Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wednesday Woo-Woo ~ Astral Projection

I've always thought the name given to this experience/phenomenon is a wee bit misleading. It leads one to think it means projecting one's self or one's consciousness into the stars. What astral projection seems to me to be is a kind of manipulation, involuntary or forced, of brain function (putting explanation at its most simple, or crude). A person feels, in this state, that they have left their physical body and can move around outside of it- sometimes at long distance from it. Never having experienced this, however, I'm not best fitted to describe it. There's lots of related information on-line - some highly suspect. Wikipedia has a good page covering most aspects.

Two names come up frequently in articles on astral projection - also called "out of body experiences" (OBE for short): Sylvan Muldoon and Robert Monroe. Both claimed to be experts on the subject, both have written or collaborated with another to write books on the topic. Monroe founded an institute devoted to research into out of body experiences.

As nobody else seems to have looked into the natal charts of these two - I will , just out of curiosity to see whether anything significant emerges.

There's a problem though, I can't find exact birth places for either. Muldoon was born in "the midwest" - I've used Chicago Illinois; Monroe's birthplace is given variously as Virginia, Kentucky or Indiana. I've used Lexington, Kentucky, where he is said to have grown up. Using these locations will at least throw up planetary positions, and as there's no information on times of birth, the ascendant and Moon position can't be accurate anyway.

Sylvan Muldoon was born on 18 February 1903

Sun and 3 personal planets in Aquarius, a strongly mentally oriented individual. Moon more than likely in Scorpio - intuitive/psychic indication.

Robert Monroe born on 30 October 1915

Monroe had Sun in Scorpio as well as a Grand Trine in Water signs linking Venus, Jupiter and Saturn - all indications of intuitive and/or psychic potential.

What I see as linking the two men though are planets conjunct the same Fixed Star. The star in question is Tejat Prior which sits in the early degrees of Cancer, though is actually in the constellation of Gemini. Muldoon had Neptune conjunct Tejat Prior, Monroe had Pluto conjunct the same Fixed Star. In both cases the respective natal planets are also linked to natal Sun via harmonious trine.

C.E.O. Carter wrote that the presence of this Fixed Star in an early degree of astrological Cancer would impart a definite Mercurial value to that degree. In traditional astrology Tejat is interpreted as meaning pride and over confidence, though I tend to take these ancient interpretations with a pinch of salt. As both these 'astral travellers' had a planet close to Tejat Prior, with its Mercurial indications, makes me wonder whether this is in any way linked to the ability to project one's consciousness - an exercise which must surely be linked strongly to Mercurial traits. Both men had natal Mercury in an Air (mental focus) sign: Aquarius and Libra; this places even more emphasis on mental orientation.


Unknown said...

I have a friend who is heavily into meditation and says she can journey through the Astral plane. I learned some meditation techniques from her but baulked at the strictures about becoming a vegan and giving up things in my life that I enjoy. Why do some of these so call spiritual practices always involve sacrifice or restrictions on just pure enjoyment? Maybe wearing a hairshirt just doesn't suit me!

She is also a fine example of how a vegan diet can undermine health as she suffers from a lot of diet related issues including oestoporosis from lack of calcium. She also won't take medicines prescribed by her GP for her heart as she believes that they don't understand that she can do it better holistically and it "interferes with her meditation". Considering that she has had a series of mini strokes I find this attitude which she has picked up from this group very scary. Another member of her group is a GP and has had 3 strokes which also seem to be related to the regime. So even a medical practitioner can be taken in by this or really should know better. Is it worth putting your life at risk to "journey through the astral"?

Also the group she is part of has aspects of a cult that I am uncomfortable with. The leader can't be contacted by anyone outside of the group and he has a couple of "gatekeepers" who control access to him. I dropped her off near his house once and only found out later that that was on their instruction. I wasn't allowed to see where he lived in case I came into "unofficial" contact with him. Not impressed with people I have never met deciding for me who I can meet or where I can go. Needless to say I didn't join.

Was even more thankful when I helped her with her tax return which involved checking her bank statements for interest payments and I realised that she was paying him £43 a month out of her state pension. She complains about her limited income but supports him.

Like religion it exists on the back of others. Parasitical if you ask me.

Rant over! Need tea and a chocolate bourbon biscuit to calm down. No astral travelling for me then ;-)

gian paul said...

At the risk of "becoming invasive" - the French say one has to work the iron while it is hot - I can comment the following about "astral travel":

First, Rossa is entirely right with what she says. Enjoy your chocolates!

In my grandfather's house (5-600 years old, 3-feet thick walls) there was an opening in the sealing of the living room. Nicely carved in wood and it had a gliding cap.

I was told that when somebody in the house died, near the oven, at least in winter it's getting very cold there, that cap had to be opened "for the soul to be able to freely float away". I believed it but also forgot.

Until some 30 years later a good friend of mine died in the hospital in Lausanne. I rushed there as his wife had called me in. She had left me alone in the room when he visibly entered his final moments. I thought to call his wife back (she had gone to have some coffee), but I was "retained" from doing so.

Some perception difficult to explain, but reminding me of that opening in my grandfather's ceiling, kept me very attentive.

I sensed that my friend, already unconscious, had a serious struggle to "liberate himself from his body". In a mental effort (that's the best I can describe it), I "took some imagined scissors" with the help of which "I cut some sort of cord" between his chest and belly. That done, I sensed that something "floated away" and my friend had died. Finally, it felt, as I could sense sort of a relief for his now dead body!

Having never had myself any conscious "floating experience" - and like your friend Rossa do not wish to have one, also preferring chocolate - I nevertheless can imagine that what happened with my friend, may happen to living people, and on purpose.

At the risk probably of not being able to correctly return into their body. They then may just make it to the mad-house...

PS. On your previous blog, T. you mentioned "repeated coincidences" being as good as proof. Of course, they are, but that's for the "initiated". No skeptic will buy that as he would cease being that.

Twilight said...

Rossa ~~~ Thanks for the input - very interesting! It almost seems that deprivation of various kinds can assist in bringing on this mental dysfunction (I call it that because really that is how I see it). Humans can train their bodies to do all manner of peculiar things, so training the mind is likely to be an extension of that I guess.

The lazy way could be to take LSD, magic mushrooms etc.

Whether what they call the astral plane is anything other than a backstreet or hidden cavern of the mind is anybody's guess.

Once that cult thing takes a hold on a person I see only sad ends.
It's a pity your friend is so taken up with it all, you must worry about her.

Twilight said...

gian paul ~~~ Invasive? Not at all my friend. I keep wondering whether you'd like to do a guest post or two sometime? I know you said you have internet difficulty in your area, so I could post the odd piece for you here -with pleasure. Will pass on an e-mail address if you wish.

The out of body thing at point of death may well be connected to the astral projection phenomenon - seems likely. Your experience could point that way. But we can't ever be sure exactly what is going on at that point, at the last breath etc. as the brain closes down. Is it reaching the distant area that astral travellers strive to reach perhaps?

I've never been present at the actual moment of death for any of my long gone loved ones. In fact it always seemed to me that they waited until I wasn't there to depart. after I'd sat for hours and days waiting, probably willing them not to leave me. This gets very emotional for me - so best leave it at that.

Unknown said...

Your comments Gian Paul are very interesting as my friend says she has met the "spirit" of her dead friend on the Astral Plane, he recognised her and they had a conversation.

I was in the house with her when he died in 2006 though we didn't hear anything. We believe he had a heart attack while sleeping upstairs.

For someone who says she has a spiritual connection it was interesting to see that she didn't pick up that, while we were talking downstairs, he died in the room above us. Neither of us saw or felt anything.

That is not to say I don't believe that a "soul or spirit" can go on. I read a book recently written by some Macmillan nurses and all of the stories were about what happens as people come to the end of their lives and they will often wait until they are alone, T, as they don't want their loves ones to be frightened. Strangely the book was very uplifting and it was the same friend who lent it to me when I thought my Dad may die last year.

I think that deprivation is common amongst the devotees of certain strict religious practices like the Tibetan Monks for example and some of the hermits and other holy men in India. They may be able to "travel" through a dimension most of us will know nothing of in the so called real world. But it is the fact that to do so they must become almost dead from starvation that is a discipline I for one do not want to take part in.

gian paul said...

Thanks, T, for your generous offer. I indeed do have internet problems here, depending on a modem and then my computer is constantly linked to some brokers, often "crossing wires", I guess. I am an addict to following the markets. That's why also, I like to blog, in the more quiet moments; but even more so when there is a feeling like "flying on the carpet" - modern version, that is.

Your suggestion that the "other side" may be a "hidden cavern within" is fascinating and corresponds entirely to things one can read in some of the Gnostic Evangeliums, notably that of Thomas.

Conferring to the death of my friend once more, the experience I had then, left me with the certainty that some energy/magnetic field exited his body. Whether that was his "soul" I do not know. The ancients distinguished between ANIMA and ANIMUS. Anima being more the "animal soul" - in my understanding, akin to some energy.

It's worth investigating for the curious and also for those who enjoy the luxury to be able to "figure out things".

Twilight said...

Rossa ~~~ Good points about deprivation....when reading it I suddenly thought about that really stupid practice we occasionally read about (usually involving celebs) where they deprive themselves of air by a kind of hanging/choking to achieve some kind of sexual put it delicately. David Carradine was one such case, and Michael Hutchence, pop star, another.
In a way this is similar - trying to go beyond what standard body or mind action can achieve, via deprivation.


As to souls and spirits, I'll "take the 5th" on that one, because I really don't have any clear idea about it. I wish I did. I'm always keen to hear what others have to say on the topic though.

Twilight said...

gian paul ~~~ I'll leave you an e mail address at the end of this comment - if you decide to use it at some point I'll reply from my regular e-address which I reist publishing here to avoid spammy overloads.

I can appreciate the feeling that some electro-magnetic element might leave the body at death, it seems very logical that it would, once the brain comes to a halt.

Gnostic Evangeliums are a bit out of my range, but if they indicate the existence of a cavern within, I wonder how they arrived at that conclusion, so long ago.

We could write all kinds of sci-fi tales on this! ;-)


Anonymous said...

Thanks, T. At the risk of leaving an impression of making some propaganda, here 2 quotes from the Ev. of Thomas (I translate from the French):

1) Jesus said: The Kingdom is within you and without you.

2) Asked when the Kingdom will come, he replied: It will not come when it is expected. It's neither here nor there. It's all over the place and right now - but humans are blind and don't see it.

This is as close as it can get to Greek Pantheism. Or some astrological notion that all is connected with everything and therefore under the regimen of who created the Universe.

To which I would add that probably the Universe was not created once and then left on it's own. It's in constant process of being created. That is if linear time or a similar not proven notion is correct.

I can imagine that in a dimension not understandable to humans, time is non-linear, i.e. that there is no distinction of past-present-future. The latter distinction being a simple device for "lesser beings" to be able to live, evolve and understand.

The idea of a "life after life" is possibly nothing more than a projection of such human three-dimensional thinking.

The Chinese Tao Te King is quite rich in allusions to such "unimaginable reality". And it can only be by means of allusion as the mind fatally works in a three-dimensional and limited fashion. The famous Koans in Zen work the same way.

What in astrology is observed as being cyclical, may be part of an ascending spiral. But as I say "ascending", I introduce a linear, vertical but nevertheless linear time element which may not exist in reality. That then leads to a one-dimensional concept. However, the Sufis who are so-to-say the champions in that line of investigation, admonish "not to spell it out".

PS. Will test your link in the next few days. Ciao

Wisewebwoman said...

What rich read this has been T! I learn so much from you and your readers!
As to that 'hole in the ceiling' I have one too in what used to be the big old kitchen, now a family room, right by the stove. And guess what? It was to let the heat upstairs to warm the upstairs. Ha!
As to Rossa and her bourbons, that is a biscuit I can't get here and I had this instant craving once I read the words. Another Ha!
Astral projection - often related to extreme fasting with hallucinatory results. Encouraged by a lot of cults. Including (in my childhood) Catholicity which certainly induced fainting from me, a child, on more than one occasion, in the church.
As an adult, and not fasting, I've had some rather strange experiences where I felt I was in another place but that could have been the intensity of desire.
I do keep an open mind, however.

gian paul said...

Thanks,WWW, - it could well be that my grandfather had pulled a leg on me with that whole in the ceiling and that it mainly served to let the heat go upstairs in his house as well!

I though prefer the story of letting the souls "escape". And sometimes fiction precedes reality...

Twilight said...

gian paul ~~~ Thanks for the further input. I've come to the conclusion, eventually, that these matters are far beyond what humans are capable of understanding. Theories put forward, over many centuries, have been evidence of humans trying to make sense of what they experience.

In my view Jesus did exist and was a teacher, in many ways similar to Martin Luther King Jnr. He too was trying to make sense of things and passing on his concusions to the masses. He might have been right.....or not. We'll never know.
The main part of his message - the one that really matters "Love one another" is paramount and the only way humanity can save itself. The rest... don't know.

But it is always interesting to read what others feel about these mysteries.

Twilight said...

WWW ~~~ Glad you found it interesting. I do too. I also licked my lips at Rossa's mention of bourbon biscuits. I loved them and they are not available in the USA either.

Fasting for reasons other than losing weight - and even then it's risky, is a fool's pastime in my opinion. Anything "discovered" while in that weird state brought on by deprivation is not going to be worth much in the real world.

Unknown said...

Hey Twilight and WWW. If you can let me know how to contact you I will send you Bourbon biscuits and any other biscuits you so desire.

Do you remember Figgy Duffs (Fig Rolls) and how about Garibaldi biscuits which we used to call squashed fly biscuits as children.

Jaffa cakes aren't as good as they used to be and of course there is the old tea time favourites Rich Tea or Chocolate Digestives.

Or there are chocolate fingers, those pink wafer biscuits, jammie dodgers, custard creams, you name it they're still out there somewhere.....mmmmmmm!

Twilight said...

Rossa~~~ Oh what a kind thought -much appreciated. After thinking about Bourbons this afternoon I tracked down a couple of US websites where British foods can be had, and voila! Bourbon biscuits (Crawfords). So, as I'm going to be sending for some Heinz Salad Creme and some mint sauce shortly, I'll add some bickies to the order.

I remember all of those you mention - and with affection.
Gypsy Creams were good too, and the original Penguins - but they deteriorated.

Chocolate digestives are bliss - dark or milk. I have managed to get those at a British shop in Oklahoma City once or twice. Ordinary Digestives are lovely too.
and Marie, and Arrowroot - I used to love the semi-sweet varieties, especially when not feeling well -comfort bickies.

They just don't do biscuits properly (here they're cookies) in the USA. Or chocolate.

Remember chocolate Kunzle Cakes. mmmmmm?!!!!

Thanks again for the offer - if my current plan doesn't work out....I'll be back with an order. ;-)

Wisewebwoman said...

Oh thank you Rossa, I get a lot of the good ones here (thank you thank you Tunnocks!)but Bourbons, alas not at all. I will do what T has done and go online and if unsuccesful will get hold of you, my new dealer.