Saturday, August 22, 2009

Celia Green's book on OBEs

The first book I looked at was "Out-of-the-body experiences" by Celia Green. It is the Proceedings of the Institute of Psychophysical Research Volume 2. Isbn 0900076011, and was published in 1968.

My notes are as follows:

This book contains the results of a study conducted in 1966. Two questionnaires were sent to about 400 persons who responded to a media appeal. 326 replied to the first and 251 to the second. Gender wise, 68% were female and 32 % male.

It should be noted that OBEs are referred to as 'ecsomatic' experiences in this work.


"We define an 'ecsomatic experience' as one in which the objects of perception are apparently organized in such a way that the observer seems to himself to be observing them from a point of view which is not coincidental with his physical body." p 17.

Ecsomatic experiences occur in a number of situations; while apparently asleep; under anaesthesia; while walking; while sitting alone or in company.

12% of 'single" cases occurred while asleep. 32.4% of 'single' cases while anaesthetised or unconscious.

60.9% of subjects reported only one experience - i.e. a "single' case.

Ages - "...are reported as occurring at almost all ages, although they are less frequently reported later in life." p 23.

Duration - "...the majority of 'single' cases last no more than a matter of minutes." p 24.

"The psychological circumstances which precede ecsomatic experiences, particularly 'single' ecsomatic experiences, are frequently characterised by the presence of some identifiable form of stress." p 25.

"Thus subjects who are deaf or have poor eyesight may find themselves 'hearing' and 'seeing' clearly, in their ecsomatic experiences." p 32.

800% of subjects of single cases report they appeared to be 'a disembodied consciousness." p 34.

"Many subjects comment on their feelings of well-being and reality, in their new position apart from their physical body..." p 39.

"Eighty-one per cent of the subjects of 'single' ecsomatic cases stated that, while they were apparently out of their bodies, they seemed to see their physical bodies from outside. " p42.

"Subjects may find themselves behind, beside or above their physical body, but very rarely report having viewed their physical body from a position below it." p 46.

(To be continued)

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