June 13, 2010

How to have Out of the Body Experience: William Buhlman OBE workshop, Italy

William Buhlman is one of the best known names in the world of OBEs (Out of Body Experiences). He's a pioneer in the field, and good at teaching the skill to others. So, to be at one of his workshops was fantastic - it allowed me to ask all the questions I wanted directly to the man himself. He doesn't often come to the UK- last time was six years ago - and he has no immediately plans to come here in the near future. He does however go to Italy, saying he resonates particularly with Rome, and possible past lives there. This workshop was at Le Querce Bianche near Treviso. .

Buhlman utilizes hypnosis to maximum effect, achieving a very deep level of relaxation, bordering sleep. This assists people to move smoothly into altered states of mind- the fertile platform for triggering OBES. His workshop activates all the ideas contained in his books '
Adventures Beyond the Body' and 'Secrets of the Soul' "are probably the most accesible accounts of non-physical experience available to date. Millions of people have had OBEs and NDEs ( Near Death Experiences) but a good number of people misinterpret their meaning.

What's good about these books is that they are not just based on his personal experience
though 'Adventures' is drawn from his own OBE journals, but they rest on massive research. The number of people responding to Buhlman's OBE survey has now topped 20,ooo! Respondees come from all over the world; the results showing that OBEs are a universal phenomena, irrespective of age, gender, class, religion or belief system.

On a personal level Buhlman shines. He's modest and committed- a great teacher who manages to make complex ideas simple without triviaizing their depth. Lucid and grounded, he stands tall and fit at age 60, and speaks straight from the heart, obviously passionate about his subject.

What you learn from his is that the biggest barrier to exploring beyond the body is our own fear. Developing a strong, flexible mindset, he believes, is probably the most important factor in achieving successful OBEs, allowing the mind to then open up to weird and wonderful inner dimensions. A good out of the body explorer is:

  • courageous
  • adventurous
  • fearless
  • open
  • goal-oriented
  • objective in recording experiences thoroughly

The tendency of some people during OBE practice is to be fearful that what's happening to them isn't 'normal.' Buhlman was great at calming such fears and clarifying that ' There are NO RULES -----Except to keep away from your body once you're out.' Anything goes because we are individuals and one OBE size definitely does not fit all. Different experiences just add to the richness and variety of OBEs. Letting go of emotional baggage, giving up analyzing, and dissolving fearful thinking can have benefits in any area of life, but when confronting the great mysteries of life beyond death, these actions have increased impact. It frees up energy to be able to shift dimensions more freely.

Most are afraid they won't be able to reconnect with their bodies, but to Buhlman, this is what keeps people trapped. They need to 'break the mould'. He has this amazing sense of courage to explore. He never fears alien entities, or malicious spirits, or possessions, as he says 'we are the most powerful creators in the universe.' It is our own minds that create the fears and phantoms in the first place. It is important to recognise this, and it is up to us to just take command. This kind of talk has made him an inspiration. He's working at the frontiers of consciousness, an explorer who challenges all the received and conventional notions of what is supposed to happen when we die.

He used his own hemi-sync style music to lead us into trance states, bordering sleep. Several key techniques were then introduced, including one from the Golden Dawn, and an ancient Peruvian Shaman Fire Ceremony where objects symbolizing habits were burned in solemn silence.

Over lunch, I talked to him about the few advanced I'd made with Todd Rout's workshops; also at discovering Jurgen Ziewe, author of Multi Dimensional Man who says that OBEs can be accessed through meditation. I said I'd used a lot of OBE techniques for a while, but still could not tell whether I was really out of body or not. Buhlman's view was characteristically direct: in workshops there is always an 'aura overlap', which could act as interference, so it was better to be in the secluded, individualized cabins at the Munroe Institute. He jested with me that in a difficult case like mine, I might need to be 'hit out with a hammer'. If so, Buhlman was definitely the hammer I needed- I could easily imagine him blowing things out of the water.

Paradoxically, being 'out' whether slipping out, or being knocked- Buhlman reminded us is a misunderstanding of the nature of OBEs. There is no 'out in terms of the higher consciousness- just as there is no 'up' or 'down' or linear time. The higher self is beyond such categories and measurements required by the physical dimension self. An OBE (a term that seems to have stuck) is really more of a transition of consciousness 'inwards' into layers of being. Going 'out' can be a useful, but largely metaphorical way of understanding this shift away from the physical body we are all so attached to.

Buhlman also said that in that workshop room, several -possibly hundreds- of spirits were listening in, to gain what knowledge they could to know what to do about the after death state. I did not even notice until someone who had photos of hundreds of orbs floating about like mushroom clouds at Ankor Wat, Cambodia, pointed out that there was one in my photo of the workshop room. I was astonished to see it there. The jury is still out on what causes orbs- dust specs and refracted light effects or wandering, nosy spirits?- but they certainly have a strange way of appearing sometimes, but not others, as if they are choosy.

People came forward with various odd experiences, and Buhlman took time to answer them all, so people went away satisfied- the workshop was a success, although with hard work ahead. If there is one motto, I'll take away from the weekend, it is 'Just Surrender' to the experience- it's all there waiting for you.

Kieron Devlin

June 12, 2010

It Wasn't

I found an old poem the other day, ' It Wasn't' written in the eighties, so long buried, like looking down an old well at a reflection of myself I'm no longer familiar with. I had almost forgotten that poetry was my first and most important muse in those days. It was only later I started to write stories and essays. It is strange reading this again, like something that needs dusting off, before it fades away permanently. The person about whom it was written died in 2001 of AIDS related illnesses. I even remember designing this little Logo for the Oscars.

It wasn't

It wasn't the fact that you were wearing

soaked plimsolls in a muddy patch, and split

blades of grass were sticking to your turnups,

that made me grin; no, it just wasn't that.

My head had already turned with fever

at your smile; so Cheshire cat-like, giddy

with those allusions to my damp presence,

eliciting from the saturated,

rained-off past, the present tense response that

showers in summer are just what I need.

No, it wasn't that the waitress put two

sugars in my tea, when I distinctly

asked for coffee anyway, that made me

gulp it down. It was the count-to-ten,

instant adrenalin rush, seeing you

follow, when I paused, stalling, just to watch

you, detaching from your group of friends and

me, finding the grass so so interesting,

miles away from the old conversations

we had left behind, to say our hellos.

It wasn't even that our umbrellas

formed a rainbow canopy, a beam that

pierced through plum clouds and stopped me in my tracks,

which rendered clean the message: at all costs,

we must meet up, no matter when or where.

Some other lesson, barely remembered,

circle of events, careless matching, came

back in the crowd of men crushing in the

marquee, escaping the rain, drinking to

oblivion, with no trace of smile fever.

It was more a coincidence of past

doubt and present impulse that clinched it all,

counselling restraint; a hell of a bore

against well-aimed lips, targeting romance

at a loveless inner vacuum. We said,

"Hello", and the game was fast in motion.

What next? Not avoiding, not plunging on,

no safe solutions. Let's arrange a day,

and see what happens. Arousal began

already when you asked,

"What's your number?"

Kieron Devlin

From 'Take Any Train'.

© Copyright of this poem remains with
the poet: please do not download or republish
without permission.