Hi. I haven’t been successful with moving out of body following this course, which is disappointing. However, the meditation exercises are great! When I perform them, I go into trance properly. My physical body just feels leaden and I don’t have the slightest motivation to move, yet my mind is alert. It is though I have put my body to sleep…which I guess is the point!
Anyway, if it helps I picture the cloud starting off above my head (I visualise it just being comfortably wider than my body when sitting). I visualise the cloud EXTENDING downwards over my head, shoulders, body etc. rather than the whole cloud moving down. When it reaches my feet, I then visualise that I am sat in a cocoon of relaxing light.
After practicing the above a few times, the performance of this preparatory meditation for me is quite quick (maybe 15 seconds 'ish). If I am aware of any tension in any area afterwards I simply direct the relaxing energy to that area. I think it is a good preparatory meditation just to get into the ‘first level’ of relaxation necessary for true meditation. It is not so important that you clearly visualise in your minds eye the light, but that you know it is there because you have created it and that you feel its effects.
Once I am relaxed, I then focus on breathing in the light from the cloud all around me for a few minutes…imaging that my internal organs and even my blood cells and bones are relaxing.
I then perform the river meditation, which really descends me another level into meditation. I visualise the river as a wide, rapidly moving current (going from right to left), taking up the whole of my vision and as though I am looking directly down upon it. However, again, I find the importance is not so much to visualise the current, but(of course, with your eyes closed) to get a sense of the current rushing by from right to left the height of my body (sitting down). I know that any thought, sound or sensation that I become aware of must immediately be caught by the current and carried off far away to the left into the distance. I notice that my body becomes quite heavy and numb during this.
After 3-5 minutes of the above, I begin to visualise a pendulum swinging from side to side. It is important to visualise the pendulum as best you can. Whenever the image starts to disappear and reappear, or other thought invade your mind, just calmly bring your attention back to the pendulum. Know that with every swing you are going deeper into trance. This exercise really does ‘finish me off’ as far as going into trance. My body and limbs feel totally heavy and numb after this and I move onto the chakra cleansing and opening exercises (energy raising, basically).
It is interesting that once you have experienced the ‘body asleep/mind awake’ state achievable through the above exercises, that even if you shake yourself out of it for a few moments, as soon as you settle back into your posture and close your eyes again, you immediately go heavy and numb again (back into trance)…the same as if you are asleep but something stirs you out of it for a few moments, as soon as shut your eyes again you immediately descend back into sleep.