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An Interview with Graham Nicholls

1. Your new book is titled, Navigating the Out-of-Body Experience. What inspired you to write about the topic?

I have been having out-of-body experiences (OBEs) since the age of twelve; the first few lasted just a few seconds and were spontaneous, but inspired an interest in me to learn what this state of awareness was and whether it could be induced intentionally. This led me to begin reading on the subject, and at the age of fourteen I had my first self-initiated OBE after around sixth months of practice. From that point on I started to realise that certain things would signal the most conducive conditions for leaving the body. I made detailed notes in my diaries of what was happening to me, and even then could see I was charting territory that few others had. I knew I would one day write a practical guide on the subject—but one unlike any other. At the time I probably didn’t realise that my book would be probably the most scientific on the subject, or that it would use such a personalised approach and would move beyond the visualisation methods that dominate the genre, but I could already sense that I was walking a different path to the ones I’d read about. When I wrote my first book, Avenues of the Human Spirit, I wanted to share something of the journey I’d been on, and how it had transformed me on a personal and spiritual level. But I knew this was not enough; I wanted others to be able to explore those areas of human consciousness for themselves, and maybe avoid some of the common pitfalls. That is why I wrote Navigating the Out-of-Body Experience.

2. How exactly would you define an out-of-body experience, or OBE?

A full out of body experience usually involves our sense of "self" being totally separate from the physical body in the form of a double or "traveling awareness." There are semi-OBE states, but the full OBE feels more real than anything we ordinarily understand—it is another sense of reality altogether. It seems that these things may be on a kind of continuum of consciousness that starts with clairvoyance or remote viewing, and moves up to the level in which we don’t identify our physical body as "us" any longer. This is characteristic of the type of OBE that people describe in a Near-Death Experience (NDE). In the NDE we hear descriptions of being in everyday reality, but also some kind of spiritual or expanded reality. This is much the same with the OBE; sometimes you will find yourself in this reality, at other times on a more consciousness-based or non-physical level.

3. Are there any benefits to experiencing an OBE?

In short, the total transformation of our consciousness and understanding of the world. This may sound like a grand statement, but if I consider the impact that OBEs have had on my life I would say that I have experienced a oneness or interconnection between all life, I have learned so much about my own motivations and limits, I have improved my health, I have even become happier and at peace within myself. The OBE can lead to a spiritual awakening through direct experience of the non-physical. The OBE can even dissolve our fear of death. On a more everyday level, it can afford us a sense of real freedom to travel and explore anywhere, it can increase our psychic abilities, and my own experiences suggest that you can even see the future through an OBE.

4. I’ve never had such an experience. Would experiencing out-of-body travel be difficult for me (or others that have never done so) to achieve?

As with any skill, it takes practice and perseverance to develop with OBEs, but I have devoted many years to developing technology and practices that will allow most people to reach the out-of-body experience. The biggest factors that stop people having consistent OBEs are fear, apathy, and a limiting belief system. In my book I explore each of these and offer ways to overcome them through exercises that draw on hypnosis, parapsychology, and positive affirmations. If you inverse the factors that hold people back, you also get the factors that lead to success, which are: positivity and confidence, drive and motivation, and an open mind. If you learn these factors or they are already present, then with the right techniques for you (which I have a questionnaire in the book to identify) you will have an extremely high chance of success.

5. What do you most hope your readers will gain from Navigating the Out-of-Body Experience?

I hope that they will find something unique, a book that does not make assumptions as much as is possible with such a subject. A book that is based on many years of research and observation of what actually works best when inducing these experiences. And a book that draws from parapsychology and even engages with the skeptics and naysayers in what I hope is a fair and honest way. Overall, though, the most important thing is I hope that my book will show you how to leave your body without fear or limitation and reach the heights of human potential.

6. Any advice for those hoping to have an out-of-body experience?

I would say that the key thing when learning to leave the body is trust in yourself and go with the process. Many people get caught up in trying too hard. Having an OBE is more of a shift in perception—or in our understanding about ourselves—than anything about one particular trick or technique. It is easy to see having an OBE almost in a mechanistic way, which is a real mistake. Anything that breaks down our usual sense of where the self is located can result in an OBE. The approaches in my book combine elements to help you achieve that shift in consciousness; they all aim to help you pay attention to your own subtle changes and achieve an awareness that will open you to psychic perception as well as a wider spiritual sense of things.

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About Graham Nicholls

Graham Nicholls (London, England) has had hundreds of out-of-body experiences and is a world-recognized expert on the subject. An experienced speaker on many areas of spirituality, art, and psychical research, he has ...

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