Understanding Astral Projection

By George A. Boyd ©2008

The term astral projection is used in a variety of New Age, Occult and other spiritual groups to denote the phenomenon of the astral body separating from the physical body and traveling in the physical universe, or in the Astral Universe that lies beyond that. As we study this phenomenon, we see there are eight major states of projection; only some of them affect the astral body and produce the astral projection. These eight states are shown below:

  1. Attentional projection – You move your attention progressively through a series of focal points in the conscious or unconscious bands of the mind. This method is used in Raja Yoga. In this practice, the astral body does not move.
  2. Passive astral projection – The astral body moves out of confluence with the physical body due to the influence of a psychotropic medication, anesthetic, or hallucinogen; or during delirium or coma. In this case, you do you will or intend for your astral body to move, but it disengages due to exogenous or endogenous influences upon the physical-etheric matrix.
  3. Intentional astral projection – You command your astral body according to your suggestion, often to carry out a specific task of viewing (e.g., remote viewing) or listening (e.g., telepathic communion with a guide).
  4. Conjoined astral projection – this type of projection occurs when the astral body moves out of conjunction with the physical body while your attention is held within it. This gives rise to the classic out-of-body-experience (OOBE), where you are “in” your astral body, looking down at your physical body from above. You can passively induce an OOBE with drugs, or you can actively train your attention using relaxation with suggestion in self-hypnosis. Some contend that exposure to brain entrainment equipment or specially designed music can also produce an OOBE.

In an OOBE, you have little control over where your astral body goes—this type of astral projection gives rise to dream-like experiences. The dream-like nature of these experiences has led some people who have studied astral projection to speculate that the astral body separates from the physical body during the dream state and wanders.

  1. Guided astral projection – The suggestion of another person using hypnosis or “guided meditation” guides you into states of astral projection. Through suggestion, you are led to visit a physical location such as a beach or forest. You might receive a suggestion to visit an earlier time in the present life or in a past life (past life regression). You might be asked to interact with an unconscious personality element, a symbol or an archetype, or to encounter your spirit of your Higher Self. In this type of projection, you give permission for another person to guide your astral body, who guides your astral body and attention to accomplish a specific therapeutic or insightive purpose.
  2. Direct projection – In this method, you place your attention on the attentional principle. When attention is united with the attentional principle, the attentional principle travels upward out of its ground state in the pituitary center of the Subconscious mind into higher states of consciousness. The astral body assembles around the attentional principle during its ascension and rises with it. It will travel with the attentional principle, until it reaches the top of the Psychic Realm; here the astral body is dropped into its origin. This is an advanced practice of Raja Yoga.
  3. Projection of the spirit – in this method, your spirit opens the channels of the Nada. In these meditations, you place your attention upon the spirit, as it journeys upward in the Nadamic current. Here you become aware of an astral body that encapsulates your spirit; this form is dropped at a particular location on the Path.
  4. Command projection – In this type, you use a higher octave of your will in the Superconscious mind to command your astral body to carry out a specific task. These command centers include the center of Magical Will, which is activated by Occult initiates on the Lower Astral Plane; the Psychic Will, used by psychic guides; the Solar Angelic octave of will, empowered by Ascended Masters and their disciples; and the Cosmic octave of will, which Yogi Preceptors and their disciples stir into activity to perform miraculous powers (siddhis).

It is important for the aspirant to identify each of these types of projection. We teach types (1), (6) and (7) in the Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the Accelerated Meditation Program. We also use type (5), guided astral projection, during our training of a technique for self-hypnosis in the Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the Accelerated Meditation Program.

Through your study of projection, you will ultimately gain complete control over your astral body; you may then use it as readily as you do your physical body. Once you achieve this mastery, your astral body will become a valuable tool for your Soul’s Great Work and you will be able to utilize all eight forms of projection.

Ways People Experience the Astral Body

By George A. Boyd © 2017

Across the Seven Rays, there are seven alternate ways for interfacing with the astral body. These are briefly described below:

1st Ray – You interface with the astral body via the deep body awareness center. You access your astral body through relaxation and suggestion. Hypnosis and autohypnosis use this type. Mudrashram® teaches a technique for autohypnosis in its intermediate courses, the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course Meditation and the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program.

2nd Ray – You interface with the astral body during dreaming, rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. This access point is through the heart center of the vehicle below waking awareness, where attention resides during dreaming sleep. Those who use this method frequently keep dream journals, and commonly undergo training in lucid dreaming. Schools of psychotherapy that analyze dreams and that ask people to remember and monitor their dreams adopt these methods.

3rd Ray – You interface with the astral body through the etheric switchboard of the Metaconscious mind. Volition directs the astral body to give suggestion to the physical body for healing or to give information about the what the body is experiencing, to visualize ideas and alternative scenarios, to trace issues back through your life narrative and personal unconscious, or to personify subpersonalities or dramatic characters. Your Metaconscious mind operates this practical form of utilizing the astral body.

4th Ray – You interface with the astral body through the solar plexus brain. This pathway promotes conscious astral projection experiences. Occult and psychic schools that train people in psychic skills—such as healing, channeling, and doing readings and remote viewing—employ this pathway. Psychoactive drug use passively awakens this pathway.

5th Ray – You interface with the astral body through the medulla center of the system of chakras in the Subconscious mind. When your attention travels through this portal, you study the operation of the astral body, examine how its senses and movement work, and experiment with using intention to control it. You activate this body when you move your attentional principle out of its ground state in the pituitary center of the Subconscious mind—on any of the Seven Ray tracks—and it directly responds to suggestions and commands that your intention anchors. The direct projection technique that we teach in our intermediate courses awakens the astral body in this manner.

6th Ray – You interface with the astral body though your spirit—you experience the astral body in this perspective as a covering over your spirit that you drop when you reach a certain level on the Nadamic Path. Meditation schools that emphasize Nada Yoga practice, particularly the traditions anchored on the first through fifth Transcendental Paths view the astral body in this fashion.

7th Ray – You interface with the astral body through your attentional principle—you perceive your astral body through this viewpoint as a covering over your attentional principle that it drops at the top of the Psychic Realm. When you operate through this view, you can activate a variety of inner abilities and do readings through astral body, both through contemplating the chakras within it and through viewing different bands of the mind and the Planes of the Continuum. Schools that train in metavisional sight exploit this approach. We train our advanced students in Mudrashram® how to access the visioning abilities available through this perspective in our “Another Look at Inner Vision” series.

Mudrashram® trains its students in several of these methods that access the astral body in our intermediate classes. We teach a First Ray autohypnosis technique. We tap the Third Ray perspective when we introduce our evocative Rainbow Technique. We show you the direct projection method of Raja Yoga, which is a Fifth Ray technique.

In the Mudrashram® Advanced Course in Meditation, we introduce our students to the coverings over the spirit in our Advanced Nada Yoga module, which examines the Sixth Ray perspective. We also train our students in the Seventh Ray approach in our advanced webinar series, which students that complete the advanced course can study.

We generally steer aspirants away from the Fourth Ray solar plexus pathway. While your attention can readily enter the astral body through this pathway, it commonly has little control over your experience—either where the astral body travels or whom it encounters. Psychoactive drug use shares this pathway, and similarly, triggers a passive astral projection experience.

There is some risk in adopting passive astral travel methods. You sometimes can encounter malevolent entities in the inner Planes—particularly on the Lower Astral Plane—who may attempt to take over your physical body (possession) or inflict emotional torment and severe mental confusion (psychic attack). The “bad trips” that those who ingest psychedelic drugs report are examples of these types of experiences.

These experiences leave you shaken and traumatized. We suggest it is better to avoid them through only using a controlled astral travel method, such as the Fifth Ray, direct projection method.

The Third Ray will-governed approach, and the Seventh Ray visioning activation approach are also safe meditation practices, as they keep the astral body under the control of volition, or the intention and suggestion of the attentional principle.

The spirit’s ability to make use of its astral covering in the Sixth Ray perspective is similarly under the control of its conative principle—which we call, the wish. This wish-activated interface with its astral covering does not involve the spirit passively wandering through the dimensional worlds on the Nadamic Path.

The First Ray approach of self-hypnosis and hetero-hypnosis is likewise generally safe, as your astral body will respond to your—or your hypnotist’s—suggestion, provided that neither of you lead the astral body into areas of the unconscious mind or the astral Planes where it might encounter negative entities that are beyond your ability to control.

The Second Ray dream methods, since a therapist supervises them, generally do not lead to problems; if you do have nightmares or other dysphoric dream experiences, they can be readily debriefed and deconstructed to promote your understanding and integration of them. Since most lucid dreaming methods attempt to get the subject in dreams—your attentional principle—to wake up and control the experience, these methods should also not get you into trouble.

We encourage you to become familiar with all seven interfaces with your astral body, so that you may understand this vehicle that you inhabit during the states of dreaming, hypnosis, and meditation, and when you perform psychic readings. If you endeavor to explore the solar plexus pathway of passive astral projection, we encourage you to only do so in a guided meditation that a Light bearer supervises, so you can travel under protection, and safely enter the current of the Astral Light without being waylaid during your journey.