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Observations placeholder

Swann, Ingo - Out of body over Central Park



Type of Spiritual Experience


He describes himself here in the third person as though he was watching himself …..

A description of the experience

From Ingo Swann – to Kiss the Earth Goodbye

His head was pasted with several electrodes, and he was sat in the dull yellow room awaiting the moment when all would be in order and the experiment could proceed.

As usual, he felt somewhat foolish. He was about to try the impossible once more. Over his head by several feet, up near the ceiling, a small platform hung suspended. On that platform, out of sight, were the targets.

The subject was imprisoned in the chair in which he sat, the electrodes on his head feeding through the wall behind him into the EEG equipment clacking away in the next cubicle. If he moved his head very far, he would disconnect from the machine.

He was supposed to try to float out of his body, and wafting upward, attempt to view what was on the platform.

…. To escape the inane yellow, of the room, he shifted his awareness outside the building, to the elegant and misty grey of a New York winter afternoon. It was January 12th 1972, approximately 3 p.m.

With his other awareness he could barely perceive the dark canyon of buildings forming West seventy third Street. He noticed a brilliance flowing from Central Park, where the light was apparently bouncing on trees and openness, emanating into the street somewhat like a mist of silent molecular bubbles.

His awareness flashed momentarily up through the overcast and smog. There he perceived the sun, brilliant, already sinking in the west. The sky above the clouds was a pale blue almost a shimmering silver shen

A familiar sense of freedom ran through his consciousness, a sense of freedom - from when? Or from where?

Sounds in the building pulled his consciousness back to somewhere in the proximity of his head. He was bored with waiting. He lit a cigar, sniffing the delicious aroma, a smell that probably was an acrid stench to others.

Then everything was suddenly ready. The machinery was functioning properly. Now it was all right for him to "float" up and view the target.  Without extinguishing his cigar, holding it lightly between two fingers, he tried consciously to locate the target up at the ceiling. It involved only a moment's slight shift of attention, a feat about as difficult as shifting thoughts.

His "seeing" seemed to flux in and out of the visible light spectrum. From blackness through red, suddenly a brilliant white. There it was briefly he saw what lay on the platform. As usual it was divided into two parts, and as usual, with his paranormal perception having anything but 20/20 vision. He could barely make it out.

Definitely an unfamiliar form. But it was long and black, lying on something red, almost circular in form.  On the other half of the target was what appeared to be a circular arrangement, almost like a bull's-eye, a real "target." Could it be? Could the experimenters have put something as simple as that, as contrasted to the esoteric designs they usually thought up, designs one had to ponder carefully even when viewing them with real eyes? Yes, he decided, it was a bull's-eye.

 This perceptive awareness had suffered itself to be pinpointed for a brief moment. Now suddenly it expanded again to encompass much more: voices in other parts of the building, someone climbing the stairs in the corridor outside the laboratory, slush flooding through some plumbing, the noises of New York sonorously roaring outside the building.

Puffing a fresh cloud of blue-white cigar smoke, the subject took a clipboard awaiting him and sketched out what he had seen "up there." And then the experiment was over.  It had taken just sixty seconds from start to finish.

The source of the experience

Swann, Ingo

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