A number of years ago I was taking part in one of the online courses Belsebuub ran. The course itself had been really helpful with focusing deeper on the practices, and I got a lot of motivation from the feedback and advice other people were giving.
One week, we were looking further into doing reality checks as a method for astral projection. We were given two techniques to explore, to either pull our finger and see if it stretched, or to take a small jump and see if we could float.
I had been trying the techniques for a while, but to be honest, my efforts had been fairly lacklustre and not much seemed to be happening. I felt it was down to me to try to turn things around though, so I decided to really try to implement the method more, especially one night where I decided to just go all out with it. I had had a bit of a busy day, but I wanted the day to go differently than the rest of the week before it. I decided to go for a walk just before heading home for the evening, trying to be as aware of the present moment as I could and to do the reality check practices.
An Awareness Walk through Familiar Places
I walked around my home town as everything was starting to quieten. I tried to really see the environment I was in, the old cathedral whose grounds I passed through, the clouds, stars and occasional people who came my way. I tried to use the things I saw as triggers for questions – was it really normal for me to be there? Were the things around me symbols?
Sometimes, when a feeling of awareness could be sustained for some time, a really natural, questioning feeling arose. It was almost as if there was a perceptible magic in the air and I really wasn’t sure whether it was actually a dream or not. This was harder to maintain though, and a lot of the time I found myself feeling quite certain it was the waking world.
I wandered familiar tracks, passing by places I’d seen throughout my whole life. Seeing them brought up a sense of familiarity that – to my mind – made it seem like it was the physical world. But how many of my dreams had happened in these places too? I felt like it was worth checking to be sure.
What motivated me most of all to keep going was simply the sheer amount of times I’ve been in dreams, and regardless of whether around me was bizzare or mundane, I’ve accepted it as real and never questioned it.
I continued to try the reality checks for some time before eventually making my way home. I spoke to my family for a little bit, and despite some reluctance from my night-owl self, I decided to have an early night to see if I could reach the astral.
Something out of Place
During the night, I found myself walking with two friends just outside a local shopping centre. Everything seemed very normal – it was a nice day and the three of us were walking towards somewhere we often spent a lot of time in. It hit me though after a moment that something was a bit odd. I knew both of the people, but I realised I hadn’t actually seen them for some time. It had probably been over 2 years by that stage since we had regularly hung out together.
I was still very doubtful about being in a dream – everything was so similar to the life I lived, but this one detail seemed strange. I almost felt guilty for questioning the situation, and not expecting anything at all to happen, I decided to pull my finger.
To my astonishment it stretched like rubber – and the whole scene suddenly melted away. I was back in my bedroom, but not physically. There was a special vibrancy and feeling to the environment, but my subconscious interfered with the experience and I fell back into a dream.
I was now in the house of an old friend, with a group of people celebrating his birthday. It was a small gathering and I mingled with the crowd, but again it struck me that apart from my friend, I’d never seen any of the other people there before in my life.
Thoughts crept up trying to rationalise the situation (as I often find they do in even the most bizzare dreams). I started thinking that they were just friends of his I’d never met before. It seemed strange to me though that I wouldn’t know a single person, even as being a ‘friend of a friend’.
It seemed even stranger that no one else from that ‘core group’ of us would be at his birthday. I was still pretty doubtful, but I pulled my finger to test if it was another dream. Once again, everything melted away and I was back in my bedroom fully conscious of being out of my body.
The night that followed had many lessons to it, some of which became a big impetus for changing things in my daily life. The dreams I had that night each had a special vibe to them, where it felt like I was being helped to question the reality of what was happening within them, something which I’m still very grateful for.