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This book, which covers Visions and hallucinations, explains what causes them and summarises how many hallucinations have been caused by each event or activity. It also provides specific help with questions people have asked us, such as ‘Is my medication giving me hallucinations?’.

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Observations placeholder

Flying round the garden



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

Going Home – Colm Keane
Kevin Hill who lives in County Kerry

 'When I was young, about 13 or 14, it started happening. Invariably I would be lying in bed, wanting to go to sleep but I wouldn't be able to. I would start to shudder. This shuddering, or vibration, was entirely within my brain or mind and didn't extend to my entire body. It was like as if my spirit was vibrating in order to exit my body. It was pointless resisting it and it occurred always of its own volition.

My bedroom was in a bungalow on the outskirts of London. The window looked out over the back garden. The room was decorated blue and I was in a single bed. It was a smallish bedroom and my parents' bedroom was next door, with an interconnecting door. They'd probably be in the living-room when this would be occurring. It would usually be dark. I'd be lying on the bed, wanting to go to sleep when this shuddering thing would start.

My person, or whatever it was, would then come out of my body and go up to the ceiling. I'd turn around and look down at myself. The real me was the one up above although I was looking down at a functioning, breathing body. But the body below was bereft of any spirit because I was the spirit. The first time it happened to me it was very upsetting. I thought I had died but I hadn't. Instead, after seconds rather than minutes, I was suddenly sucked back down again and re-entered the body.

This happened time and time again. I was very frightened the first time it happened and I was probably quite frightened the second time, but as it progressed I got quite used to it. Sometimes it was a nuisance because really what I wanted to do was go to sleep and I was unable to. Initially I tried to resist it but it was hard to resist. It was insisting on happening. I became so confident that I could eventually move further away from my body. I could fly out the window. The window would be closed. I'd be able to go out through it. I'd fly around the back garden, which I did on a few occasions. I would be travelling at a medium speed although I could have varied the speed according to what I wanted. It was a long garden and there was a river down at the end of it. It was probably close on 200 feet long. But it was short enough, in relative terms, so that I only needed to travel at medium pace. I'd fly down to the end of the garden, where there was a conker tree. I'd be flying horizontal to the ground, face downwards. I wouldn’t be that high up, just a few feet above the ground, not as high as the conker tree. I could put my head up and look around. Ironically I was always frightened of heights.

I'd come to the shallow river and I'd be able to fly up and down over it. I could feel the wind and hear the river rippling. I could see and hear the water. I could smell the water too. All my senses were available to me. I'd have a perspective that I never had of the river before. That was intriguing. I might do this for 30 seconds or a minute and then I'd fly back in the window. I would fly over the bed and I'd be looking down at myself lying there. Within a couple of seconds I'd be back into the body again. There was no pain at all - I was just back in. I'd then roll over and go to sleep, sometimes grateful that it was over. It was all quite enjoyable and a lot of fun. I felt I could go anywhere. I could do it at will. I felt I could fly anywhere in the world but there was always this nervousness inside me that if my body was moved I wouldn’t be able to get back in again. I had the worry that if my mother came into the room and moved me that I might not be able to return. I was tempted to fly off to wherever but I didn't because I was too afraid, so I would only do it for a short time.

These experiences went on for maybe a year or two years and then they just ceased. They never happened again in my adult life, yet they were so vivid that I remember them clearly nearly 50 years later. I told a friend at school, who reckoned that he had a similar, although not identical, experience. I think he only had it once. I also told one or two people during my lifetime but I'm inclined not to because people might think you are bonkers. And I never told my parents. I wouldn’t have dreamt of it.

The source of the experience

Ordinary person

Concepts, symbols and science items


Science Items

Activities and commonsteps



Being a child