My first experience of being in a trance
While recalling the many times I have gone into spontaneous and involuntary state of trance, it suddenly dawned on me that the first time this happened in 1975 also involved an out-of-body experience or astral projection, which at that time I knew nothing about.
But, as the world-famous American parapsychologist and psychic researcher Dr. Stanley Krippner of Saybrook University in San Francisco told me, “You should never use the word ‘trance’ unless you define it,” because there is no universally accepted meaning of it.
By “trance” I refer to that mental state or condition in which I am completely focused within and yet aware of what’s going on around me, where I lose control of my physical body and become mentally passive and receptive to information from outside myself. During such a state, my body completely becomes limp and I fall to the ground usually very slowly and gently.
Medical science considers such a condition an ailment called “sleep paralysis,” because it happens usually upon waking up from sleep and you find yourself unable to move your body or make a sound with your voice. It may last from a few seconds to several minutes.
But going into a state of trance is neither an ailment nor sleep paralysis. It is a natural state experienced usually by mystics, psychics and sensitives with no ill effects afterward. I found out that there are so many different types of trance states or altered states of consciousness from the simple meditative state to coma.
My first experience in going into trance took place in 1975 while attending a seminar of Inner Peace Movement conducted by an American named Betina Loman. I went there, along with a dozen other individuals, out of curiosity. That was the first time such a seminar was held in the Philippines. It was supposed to teach people how to sense human energy, introduce them to their angels or spirit guides and develop intuition.
One exercise involved determining the direction of the movement of the hands of the people around a seated person with his eyes closed. The persons standing around him were to move their hands slowly in one direction at a time at a distance of over one foot away from the seated person’s body.
The first two male subjects who sat on the chair felt completely nothing. In fact, one of them asked me softly in Tagalog, “What is this nonsense we got ourselves into?” I told him, “Never mind, we are already here. We might as well make the most of it.”
I was the third to sit on the chair at the center while the rest stood about two feet around me. Surprisingly, with eyes closed, I could distinctly feel some sort of force or energy going in the direction where their hands were going, although they were moving them very slowly at a distance of almost two feet away from my body.
As they moved their hands, I would announce, “Now your hands are moving from left to right. Now from right to left, now from up to down.” I felt nothing unusual or uncomfortable, in fact, it was even pleasant. But when their hands moved from my buttocks upward, I felt a strange sensation at the pit of my stomach. As they continued the upward motion of their hands, I felt as though there was something in my stomach moving up also. For every upward movement of their hands, that thing or sensation moved up, too. It was getting quite uncomfortable for me, so I began shouting for them to stop, but I didn’t know no sound was coming out from me. So they continued to make the upward sweep of their hands.
The feeling was the same as if I was going to throw up. The thing kept going up and when it reached my mouth I vomited or threw up, not food or anything solid, but air. It was as if I vomited out only air.
And immediately afterward, I felt my body become cataleptic, I mean, it became stiff and my limbs and hands stretched out. Shortly after that, I felt my body become limp and I slumped on the chair with my head resting on my right shoulder. All the while, my eyes were closed.
Then the most unusual thing I’ve ever experienced happened. I was in the ceiling looking down at my physical body sitting on a chair with my eyes still closed. What I couldn’t understand was how I could clearly and distinctly see the face of Betina Loman standing behind me. I looked around and saw everybody as dark shadows, except my wife and Betina Loman. They both appeared normal and solid but the rest were just shadows or silhouettes. And when I focused my mind on them, I could read their thoughts. I knew what everybody was thinking. There was fear in their hearts and feeling of helplessness and shock.
Next week: “What it feels like to be out of the body”
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