Astral travel is when your spiritual body temporarily leaves your physical body, yet both bodies always remain connected via the silver cord. It's very important that you learn how to do this consciously because the majority of you are doing this every night without knowing it. At night when our physical body sleeps the majority of individuals unconsciously leave their actual physical body and travel throughout the night to far-off places within the many astral planes or this 3rd dimensional plane. As the majority of people are unaware of this very natural process, religious beliefs or otherwise, we immediately wake up and think it's all just been a dream or nightmare depending on your night's travels.
I previously mentioned that the majority of individuals astral travel at night, yet this means there are many people who cannot. They cannot because they suffer from constipation that is the world's most common ailment. Having your internal system blocked by malnourishment causes the spiritual astral body to be "locked" within the physical, so at night it cannot get released as it should. You are what you eat to which is a proven medical fact! Read Diets & Fasting to learn how to overcome this common ailment. For many obesity is just as bad, if not worse than constipation.
Your physical body is not the real you, it's just a "shell" to enable the real you, your spiritual body, to be on this planet to learn the many lessons you came here to study. If you train how to consciously astral travel you will be able to see the real world and life beyond Earth for what it really is. Things are definitely not as they appear whilst living within the physical. Many true aspects of life cannot be understood or appreciated until you are outside of the physical.
For example, being within any of the astral planes you can read any language regardless what that language was originally written in, you can undergo a huge variety of experiences which cannot be translated in Earthly terms as they are beyond 3rd dimensional terminology. You can visit any building on this planet, hear and see everything only if your motives are pure, as within the astral plane three dimensional locks, doors or walls do not pose any obstacles. However before you think it would be great to see others in their birthday suit, think again! Only those with pure intentions can hear and see everything but those with idle curiosity or alterative motives cannot, it's a universal law. You may be able to break physical laws whilst on this planet, but you cannot break universal laws regardless of who you are!
Within many of his books Dr. Rampa explains in a variety of ways how to get started in learning conscious astral travelling. Aastral travelling is as natural as breathing. It's also known as OBE or "out of body experience", NDE or "near death experience " and a variety of other names but astral travel is the correct terminology becuase the next realm beyind Earth are the Astral planes. Within the book titled You Forever Dr. Rampa explains in detail the whole process and required steps. Another book titled The Thirteenth Candle chapter eleven, page 149, also covers in more detail the whole process. The main key to success is to "visualise" yourself actually leaving your body and seeing the silver cord which connects the two bodies.
You have to go in for visualisation, and visualisation is not imagination. Imagination is something which can be indulged in on the imaginary basis only. No amount of imagination, for instance, would enable you to jump over a thirty-story building. You might be able to do it in your imagination and then you would be something like Superman; wouldn't you? But such a jump over a thirty-story building is beyond the laws of physical nature, so it is imagination only, and many people waste time imagining that which is completely impossible. Visualization, on the contrary, is something which is entirely possible because it is entirely in keeping with normal physical laws. These laws are universal laws.
So how do you know if you are astral travelling or just dreaming? simple, remember that the silver cord is ALWAYS visible, colours are more VIBRANT and you can see clearly even in the very DARKEST of rooms as your own Aura provides all the required light. When you are in the astral world you will see more colours, hear more sounds that you can perceive within the physical, and finally you can see your own physical body. Actually seeing your own physical body can be a shock and this can send the astral body straight back into the physical. If this happens sleep and try again another night. Remember there is NOTHING that can harm you whilst within the astral plane, the silver cord CANNOT be broken as only so-called death itself can do that, and you CANNOT be possessed whilst astral travelling. Your only worry is fear itself and what actually is fear? It’s simply a lack of understanding as you don't fear that which you understand; or do you? Fear and reason are the brakes that will stop you from consciously astral travelling, so learn to control your fear and thoughts.
Astral travel is natural and part of every living person's birthright, no matter whether it be an animal, a plant, a fish, a human, or even a bird, every living creatures astral travels. How quickly can you do it consciously? Well that depends on you and you alone. The majority of untrained people fall asleep during the process, which is very annoying indeed, as you must leave the physical body before it goes to sleep to remember your travels!
You must be open-minded and believe you can do it else it's pointless trying to go any further. If you believe that you can astral travel whilst also visualising yourself astral travelling, then you will succeed one day. There are numerous other websites that try and explain astral travel by bizarre methods, or by using strange naming conventions that can confuse you further. Some also state that you must call upon this or that God or being and demand they give you the power, but you get nothing if you demand anything!
Such websites should be avoided at all costs as they give metaphysics a really bad name by talking utter nonsense and will mislead you. Sadly metaphysics from a Western point of view doesn't seem to be acceptable unless it's been glorified beyond belief. Many people cannot accept that they already have the power within themselves and all this false glorification that's portrayed is not required, and NEVER WILL BE!
The above image is the Astral body leaving the physical, showing the two joined together by the silver cord.
Some people have mentioned that when astral travelling or having an out of body experience they find themselves moving though a tunnel (the colour of the tunnel is irrelevant) with a bright light at the far end. This is most excellent news as that is the way home, back to the real astral home. If you ever get the chance to do this then it's very strongly advisable to spend some time in the astral home, Remember everything you see and do, as then when your time on Earth is done you will know the way home without any delays. Within the astral plane you move by thought alone which is much faster than the speed of light. All communications are by telepathy as once within the astral planes your telepathic abilities are restored automatically.
Here is a simple Astral Travel prayer which you can recite every night as you are trying to learn.
On "such-and-such" a day I am going to travel in the astral world, and I am going to remain fully aware of all that which I do, and be fully aware of all that which I see. I shall remember all this and recall it fully when I am again in my body. I shall do this without fail.
"Such-and-such" a day should be a date, say three to six month's into the future, you decide. The prayer should be repeated just before you sleep and clearly repeated three times. Sit with bare feet together with toes and heels touching, then clasp your hands together so that your fingers of each hand interlock, and so that your hands and feet each form a closed circle. Then call your subconscious by its name and then say your prayer, repeating it three times in your normal voice, don't whisper and there is no need to shout. Then one day you will find yourself consciously astral travelling and you will return back to your physical remembering everything.
There are no special secrets to astral travelling, no club to join, no fee's to pay, it just needs your confidence and belief. It just needs the firm knowledge that you are going to do astral travelling whilst you are fully awake. The best way to start about it is not to imagine that you are out of the body, but to visualise that you are out of your body. Visualise yourself leaving your physical body, visualise yourself gradually inching out and floating inches above the recumbent physical body. Actually visualise yourself doing it, actually form the strong thoughts that you are doing it, and sooner or later you will do it. You will find, with the greatest amazement, that you are floating there looking down upon a padded, whitish-green or what ever coloured fleshy body. Probably it will have its mouth open, probably it will be snoring away because when you are out of the physical it doesn't matter at all if your body goes to sleep. Because if you get out while the body is awake you will remember the whole experience.
Many fail because they either fear the unknown, they're overtired when they try, or more commonly they have little to no patience. The Americans are the worse because their culture demands that everything is instant and nothing ever is, not even co-called instant coffee as you still have to wait for the kettle to boil, etc. Like learning anything in life it takes time, dedication and lots of patience. Read "Beyond the Tenth" page 38.
Due to today’s hectic lifestyle many cannot visualise themselves floating above their bed, as you would be when astral travelling, this is because there is too much visual input in their lives. For example television and films so that their ability has diminished greatly. Therefore this suggestion may help you overcome that small problem.
Get a partner or friend to photograph you as you would normally sleep, it must be as you would normally sleep, either naked or with pyjamas, under the covers or on top. Take the picture from either above the bed, or at the bottom of the bed, to emulate exactly the two most common positions you would be in when within the astral. Draw the curtains for ambient lighting and don't use a flash unless it's very defused. Every night before going to sleep spend a few minutes looking at that photograph, keep the image of the photograph firmly in your mind so soon enough you will find yourself floating in the same position as per the photograph, looking down upon your physical body; and then the fun really starts.
Remember never to panic even if you do get a few swaying sensations trying because that's very normal, you cannot be hurt, you can always get back into the physical once you are out. When you have finally got out of the physical, rest awhile. Just keep still, you don't need to feel panic nor triumph, just rest peaceably for a few moments. Then, if you think you can stand the shock, depending on what sort of a body you've got gaze down on the thing you've just left. It looks all lopsided, it looks either lumpy and heavy or skinny and boney, or it looks an untidy mess. Well, aren't you glad to get away from it for the time being?
Some people have dreams. Now frequently the dreams are rationalisations of what actually happened. The person is a doubter to start with and just would not believe the possibility of astral travel, and so as a solution to what would be a difficult problem the subconscious of the doubter conjures up a fantastic image or dream that is truly stranger than anything that could happen in real life. Dreams, then, are either the rationalisation of an astral experience or the mindless wandering thoughts of a body of which the astral form is far, far away, so far that no check is being kept on the mental processes of the sleeping form.
Nightmares are purely self-inflicted as it’s where your own fear is controlling your thoughts. To overcome this you must learn to control your fear by learning to control your thoughts. Thought is parent to the action, if you think of a thing that is the first step in doing that thing, and some thoughts are very disharmonious spiritually.
One final note, it is absolutely essential that before a person can astral travel consciously and under full control, they must get rid of gross lusts and carnal desires they may have. These gross lusts and carnal desires will prevent anyone from succeeding because the spiritual path is not carnal. This doesn't apply to couples who are in love and have sex because true love with pure sex only strenghtens and elevates one, whereas satifying carnal lusts prevents us from elevating ourselves.