The OBE Case histories of Dr Sandor Brent - 01 Using Guided imagery
Type of Spiritual Experience
Sandor Brent, a developmental psychologist by training, designed his techniques as an adjunct to more conventional sensitivity training. Originally working with several experimental workshops at Wayne State University in Detroit, Brent began experimenting with imagery exercises .. as a way to help people learn control over their mental experiences. This training included having the students construct an imaginary trip into outer space. Brent soon found that after being guided through the voyage, some of his subjects reported experiences very similar to classical OBEs and near-death encounters. This discovery led the psychologist to reformulate his exercises specifically as a formal OBE induction technique, although his program is basically designed for group and not individual use.
A description of the experience
David Scott Rogo - Leaving the Body: A Complete Guide to Astral Projection
Brent conducted this experiment ...at Wayne State University while preparing his protocol for formal publication. The session was held in an upper-story classroom with 45 students participating. Over one-half of them were between 19 and 23 years old, and the majority were psychology majors. Most were naive to the system, and only a relative few had ever gone through any sort of "altered states of consciousness" induction procedure.
Well over half the participants claimed no familiarity with the OBE.
Brent took the entire class, who were asked to sit in typical classroom chairs, on an imaginary OBE voyage to outer space and back. At the conclusion of the session, he passed out questionnaires asking the students whether they had left the body, to what degree they felt separated, whether they found the experience pleasant, and what background they had in exploring altered states of consciousness.
His results were fairly impressive.
Twelve volunteers claimed that they had been able to get "part way through the body," while five others reported full OBEs. A large number (18) explained that they did not feel as if they had actively left the body, but had indeed experienced themselves way out in space. The majority of the respondents found the guided imagery enjoyable. Those who were able to merge deepest with the experience of being out-of-body consistently rated the experience as more pleasant than those who had a more superficial response.
Some of the experiential reports Brent collected also read like fairly typical OBEs.
"The most vivid moment," writes one student, "was that in which I 'stood' behind myself and viewed the silent class. The feeling of soaring through space was difficult to achieve, but my imagination was at its height when I was asked to float into nothingness. Returning to my body was not difficult, but I felt a positive relief at my consciousness again being seated within my body."
So reminiscent of the experiences of the great historical astral projectors was the response of one psychology major who wrote,
"Amazing . . . I have never put my body on like a glove before."
Or another who exclaimed,
"l really didn't want to come back."