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Observations placeholder

MacLaine, Shirley - Going out of body on a long silver cord



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

Out on a Limb – Shirley MacLaine

I was silent. I wanted to think. I wanted not to think. I wanted, above all, to rest. I breathed deeply. A kind of bile rose to my throat.

I stared at the flickering candle.

My head felt light. I physically felt a kind of tunnel open in my mind. It grew like a cavern of clear space that was open and free of jumble. It didn’t feel like thought. It felt actually physical.

The flame of the candle slowly melted into the space in my mind.

Once again I felt myself become the flame. I had no arms, no legs, no body, no physical form. I became the--space in my mind. I felt myself flow into the space, fill it, and float off, rising out of my body until I began to soar. I was aware that my body remained in the water. I looked down and saw it. David stood next to it.

My spirit or mind or soul, or whatever it was, climbed higher into space. Right through the ceiling of the pool house and upward over the twilight river I literally felt I was flying. . .no, flying wasn't the right word. . . it was more gentle than that. . . wafting seemed to describe it best. . . wafting higher and higher until I could see the mountains and the landscape below me and I recognized what I had seen during the day. And attached to my spirit was a thin, thin silver cord that remained stretched though attached to my body in the pool of water.

I wasn't in a dream. No, I was conscious of everything, it seemed. I was even conscious that I didn't want to soar too high. I was conscious that I didn't want to soar too far away from my body.

I definitely felt connected. What was certain to me was that I felt two forms. . . my body form below and my spirit form that soared. I was in two places at once, and I accepted it completely.

 I was aware, as I soared, of vibrational energy around me. I couldn’t see it, but I felt a new sense of "sensing" it. It felt like a new dimension of perception, somehow, that had nothing to do with hearing or seeing or smelling or tasting or touching. I couldn't describe it to myself. I knew it was there-physically-yet I knew my body was below me. Was this what all those people interviewed by Elizabeth Kubler-Ross had experienced? Had my spiritual energy separated itself from the physical form? Was I floating as my soul?

I was consciously aware of my questions as I soared freely above the Earth. I was so conscious of what I felt that in those moments I understood how irrelevant my physical body was. I was experiencing the separation, I guess. Experiencing the two entities-and very much more besides.

I watched the silver cord attached to my body. I had read about the silver cord in metaphysical literature. It glistened in the air. It felt limitless in length. . . totally elastic, always attached to my body. My sight came from some kind of spiritual eye. It wasn't like seeing with real eyes. I soared higher and wondered how far the cord would stretch without snapping. The moment I thought about hesitation, my soaring stopped. I stopped my flight, consciously, in space. I didn't want to go any higher.

As it was I could see the curvature of the Earth, and darkness on the other side of the globe. The space surrounding my spirit was soothing and gentle and pure. I began to perceive waves of energy connections and undulating thought energy patterns. The silver cord wasn’t taut or stretched. It only floated gently. I directed myself downward, back to my body. Slowly- I descended. Slowly. . .-down, down . .. gently through the space I wafted back to earth. The energy vibrations subsided , . . the rolling sensation of the undulating thought waves disappeared above me and with a soft fusion of contact that felt like a puff, I melded back into my body.

My body felt comfortable, familiar, but it also felt restricting and cumbersome and limiting. . . I was glad to be back, but knew that I would want to go out again. The silver cord melded into the flickering candle-light and I shook myself free of the concentration and looked over at David who was smiling. I didn’t really understand what -had happened. I tried to explain it to David.

“I know," he said. "See how realization is a physical act?" he said. "What you realized was your soul and your soul left your body. That's all." But he was clearly delighted.

"You mean I was astrally projecting just then?" I asked.

"Sure," he said. "I was doing that this morning right here while you were off walking. I take trips all over the place I save on fuel costs,'' he grinned-. "In the astral world you can go anywhere you feel like, meet all kinds of other souls too. It's just that when you return to your body and wake up you often don’t remember where you've been. Something like dreaming."

"So is that what -happens when you die; your soul just rises out of your body and floats and soars into the astral world?"

"Sure," said David, "except you’re only dead if your silver cord snaps. The cord snaps and breaks off when the body can no longer sustain the life force. It’s really very simple. I can’t tell you specifically how it is to die, but I can tell you that the principle is the same as astral projection, only there’s no body to return to.”

The source of the experience

MacLaine, Shirley

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