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Randolph N's Experience

Experience description:   

Went to a TM introductory class of about 30 people.  A trainer gave us some background and mentioned that if any one started to have an OOB experience, to try to avoid all that for now since we were all new to TM.  I didn't pay much attention.  I had some knowledge of Zen from my own reading, but no meditation experience.  

The trainer privately gave each of us a mantra.  My wife was with me.  I don't recall my mantra.  We meditated in a lotus or modified lotus position.  I think I was in a full (though unrefined) lotus.  Eyes were closed.  I can't recall if I was saying the mantra out loud or whether we were saying it to ourselves.  After we began meditating, trying to clear our minds, I became very peaceful and gradually became aware that I was surrounded by a large clear ball that had a distinct golden hue and at the same time my body and the ball floated off the ground to the upper left.  The ball reminded me of a giant soap bubble, not a solid glass-like ball.  It was big enough to surround me with a little clearance around me so I was comfortable, but no room for anything else.  It was firm yet flexible, supported my body without distortion to the shape, and the color was particularly strikingly golden.  I felt warm, glowing in sort of a sunshine, and protected, yet very alert and cognizant that I was meditating yet could see out of the bubble, able to look around, and attuned to the experience.  I was aware that I was having a very special experience.  I am not spiritual in any way, and did not feel this was religious in nature, but more like it was an experience that I was one of the least likely people to have.  My personality is analytical, rational, not given to such an unusual experience. 

While the experience was going on, I felt that I had accomplished it so easily that I had a special skill or ability to drift into the state of mind necessary to have an OOB experience.  I felt that so strongly, that weirdly, I never took another TM class, almost never meditated again in the succeeding decades.  Never tried to reach that mental state again.  It's as if I did it once, I can do it at will and therefore don't need to do it again.  Rationally, I seriously doubt this is true, but the experience was so memorable that I can't shake the confidence that I can do it again if I wanted.  I don't know how long I was in the meditative state, but I think the trainer wanted to keep the experience to about 20 minutes and when he started to bring everyone back, he began talking softly and I then moved my golden ball back to where I'd been sitting.  I think I felt as though I was about 8 or 10 feet into the air and about the same distance to the left of where my body was physically sitting.  At this late date, I can't recall what I was able to see during the experience, I think I was more conscious of the comfortable feeling, calmness, happiness, even blissfulness, and the golden hue and the unusual nature of the experience than I was aware of what I was looking at.  I recall that I felt more optimistic about the relationship between my spouse and myself.  I think at the time, I was more conscious of what I was looking at and the thoughts I had, but can't recall them now.  The only negative feeling I had was a little degree of anxiety that I might not be able to resume my physical body, that I'd gone too far and had no one to guide me through the process of returning to my body.  I consciously decided to not let that slight insecurity disturb me too much, and continued with my experience, but I did retain that awareness that I would have to resume my physical form and not just remain in this state of mind.  When I was ready to end the experience, I gradually did so, and when I'd moved the ball to my physical form, and one body merged with the other, the ball disappeared and I became "conscious" again, emerging from the meditative state.  The trainer asked if anyone had an OOB experience and I said I had.  I think one or two others also said they did as well, but I'm not certain on that point.

Any associated medications or substances with the potential to affect the experience? No     

Was the kind of experience difficult to express in words?          No     

At the time of this experience, was there an associated life threatening event?          No     

What was your level of consciousness and alertness during the experience?            High

            Was the experience dream like in any way?  I had more control in my experience than I do when dreaming.

Did you experience a separation of your consciousness from your body?          Yes    My body in my experience was identical to my physical form.  I just floated away from my physical body.

What emotions did you feel during the experience?          Comfort, peacefulness, though not sedated.

Did you hear any unusual sounds or noises?          Not that I recall.

LOCATION DESCRIPTION:  Did you recognize any familiar locations or any locations from familiar religious teachings or encounter any locations inhabited by incredible or amazing creatures?        No     

Did you see a light?         Yes    The light enveloped me in the form of a golden ball.  Not a distant light.

Did you meet or see any other beings?         No     

Did you experiment while out of the body or in another, altered state? No     

Did you observe or hear anything regarding people or events during your experience that could be verified later?         No     

Did you notice how your 5 senses were working, and if so, how were they different?     Yes    vision was no different, hearing was probably diminished significantly, no smells in this environment, no sense of touch since I wasn't physically touching with my hands, but I was still aware I was sitting, no opportunity to consider sense of taste.

Did you have any sense of altered space or time?  Yes    Time felt slowed though things were happening and moving.

Did you have a sense of knowing, special knowledge, universal order and/or purpose?     Yes    Hard to recall, but knowing that of all people, I could have an OBE made me feel as though there was something special to be experienced in life that I'd not considered yet and that others could experience.

Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure?           No      I imposed my own barrier beyond which I elected not to go because my experience with meditation and OBE was so very limited.  But I didn't feel as though I limited my experience in any significant way.

Did you become aware of future events?      No     

Were you involved in or aware of a decision regarding your return to the body?          Yes    I consciously elected to return to my body when I felt the trainer was expecting us to begin to conclude our meditation.

Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience that you did not have prior to the experience?           No     

Did you have any changes of attitudes or beliefs following the experience?          Yes    It certainly broadened my belief in the range of experiences we could enjoy, but the feelings were generally short-lived and I was over it within a day or so.  I still enjoy recalling the experience because it made me feel somewhat unique and that I had a special ability that others didn't.  It also made me feel that my narrow view of what the human mind was capable of could be broadened.

How has the experience affected your relationships? Daily life? Religious practices? Career choices?       It initially made me feel more loving toward my wife, made me want to resolve the issues we had, but that feeling gradually went away.  For a while, I saw the world with a little more beauty, but that diminished as well.  No effect on me spiritually.  I didn't regard this as a religious experience.

Has your life changed specifically as a result of your experience?       No     

Have you shared this experience with others?        Yes    Briefly with my current wife.  She was intrigued but sharing it had no impact on our lives.

What emotions did you experience following your experience?  Calmness, happiness, blissfulness, desire to resolve personal problems, curiosity about the experience, confidence that my limited view of what the mind was capable of was in fact limited, but that I had an ability to rise to a higher level of consciousness.

What was the best and worst part of your experience?    The happiness I felt at knowing I was having a unique experience. 

A very slight feeling of anxiety to be experiencing this without any prior training in how to handle it or how to control it.

Is there anything else you would like to add concerning the experience?          No.

Following the experience, have you had any other events in your life, medications or substances which reproduced any part of the experience?          Uncertain     I recently had an OBE due to a medical emergency, but the experience was completely different from the above.

Did the questions asked and information you provided accurately and comprehensively describe your experience?           Yes