The Out-of-Body Experience: Fact or Fantasy?

Simone de La Tour

According to Dr. Waldo Vieira, President of the International Institute of Projectiology and Conscientiology (IIPC) based in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, each person has a second, non-physical body that can experience other realities. He considers this to be not a fantasy, hallucination or pathological state of mind, but a simple fact of reality.

His research findings show that through spontaneous physiological processes we leave the physical body to replenish our energetic system. While in the non-physical dimension the great majority remain unaware, without lucidity, while some are able to control their own dreams. Others, in the minority, relate having had experiences as intense and clear as those in the ordinary waking state. There are many cases of individuals who say they have encountered personalities that have lost their physical body. These entities are reported to have even made observations regarding the present, past or future.

Dr. Vieira feels that the capacity to access other dimensions and expand natural capacities is inherent in all individuals and should not be considered a miracle or an otherworldly wonder. Through the techniques and training offered by the Institute, he finds that the individual can learn to provoke and control the out-of-body experience (astral projection). It is considered unnecessary to depend on equipment, objects or other persons to transcend physical reality. Thus, one can maturely confront conditions which he or she will encounter sooner or later. He feels that fear of death and the unknown need not be obstacles to personal growth, but, rather, that these issues can be overcome now on an individual basis.

In workshops conducted by the Institute, a great percentage of participants have had some kind of experience, ranging from general sensations to full out-of-body experiences (OBEs). Many individuals report having realized significant benefits in the areas of health, life success and spiritual development. Students of the IIPC's seminar program have reported being able to resolve personal issues related to their current life as well as past lives through the use of OBEs.

Some participants have already had OBEs but are incapable of repeating the experience. Others have never had an OBE and want to learn to provoke and control the phenomenon. Dr. Vieira notes that many individuals say that they are misunderstood by society because they sense "things" that others do not. They may, for example, experience their body being completely rigid, being unable to move or speak--a phenomenon known as the cataleptic state. This condition is considered to not always signal an organic dysfunction. Apparently, many times this and other physical sensations could indicate that one is outside the physical body. Following are some examples of students' experiences during the IIPC's program.

A couple of years ago a student of the Institute in Brazil mentioned that she was afraid of going to sleep because she commonly felt strange sensations whenever she went to bed. Not understanding her situation, she sought the help of various health practitioners and finally could only bear the thought of sleep while under the influence of the strong medication she was constantly taking. She now recognizes that she had been experiencing typical sensations due to the separation of the physical and non-physical body.

Recently a student in New York who has undergone a number of types of therapy over many years but was unsuccessful in resolving a painful muscular spasm in his back. He reported that during his participation in one of the IIPC's out-of-body workshops, he experienced sensations like fingers probing this problem area. He says that he no longer feels back pain and is able to move his body in ways that were never possible before.

One individual who participated in the IIPC program in Florida was excited to find out that the experiences that had set him apart from others all of his life were due to his enhanced sensitivity and paranormal capacities. He also shared that he had never completed grieving over the loss of his twin sister and was able to do so when he met her face to face during an OBE.

The non-physical reality is being sampled more and more by individuals and scientific investigation. There are institutions throughout the world that are researching paranormal phenomena which have, until fairly recently, remained the domain of religion.

Dr. Vieira thinks that it is time to consider the human being as more than a sophisticated machine. He feels it is necessary to replace the mechanistic, Newtonian paradigm with a new expanded paradigm that considers the existence of an indefinable intelligent agent that organizes physical matter but is more than the physical body, something even beyond energy.

Simone de La Tour is the director of IIPC's New York office and a faculty member of the International Institute of Projectiology and Conscientiology.