There are obstacles in the art of astral projection and it requires great work to develop the skill-set - learning to still the mind, building the astral body, clearing the gravity well of your own psychic astral larvae, separating delusion and imagination from genuine astral experience, and perhaps the most challenging obstacle of all, navigating your way past the various entities that maintain our planetary interdict - accusing angels, time-cops, whatever you want to call them. They keep us psychically imprisoned on Earth possibly for our own good because we have the curse of violence or possibly because they are farming our pain - either way we are cell-mates of consciousness.
As most of us know space travel is time travel and the two arts are inextricably mixed in astral projection - when one penetrates the cell membrane of their own mind and accesses the bloodstream of time it is possible to go anywhere or anywhen.
The most interesting astral experience I ever had was achieved by using a mesh of Hebrew letters across my astral vision. I meditated until I was seeing the astral light and then I engraved a mesh of letters over it, the membrane parted and I stepped, fully dressed in fine robes into the late 16th century. I crossed the Charles Bridge to the Tower on the Old Town side, climbed the stairs, furious, and demanded to see Queen Elizabeth (who I somehow knew was there). I was stopped at the top of the stairs by a group of butterfly beings (about 4ft tall) who informed me, in Butterfly, that I could not see the Queen. I replied, still quite furious and in Butterfly, ''don't you know who I am?'' at which point I was kicked off the astral plane. My partner at the time in the next room heard me speaking in Butterfly so it wasn't just in my head.
When I was remembering this the other day I also remembered an astral projection early in my career as a magician where I projected to the Moon - there were very tall spindle like Towers, and thin bridges across chasms. I entered one of the towers, flying through one of the top most windows, and inside there was a viscous black gel which I became stuck in, before I was surrounded by Butterfly beings, who could operate in the gel as if it wasn't there. After getting stuck I was kicked off.
During a systematic conjuring of the Archangels in 2002, I experienced Uriel as a moth-man like entity who gave me information regarding an interesting use of the Tree of Life* and then, after doing what he said he took me through my fireplace and into an alternate negative universe which at the time I associated with Daath - the hidden/invisible Sefira. There I met my anti-self also immersed in black viscous gel.
|GUARDING THE GATES OF HELL IS TAKING ITS TOLL|
As I have worked more and more with Archangel Raziel, it seems that we can work out and exercise our astral bodies in what is the astral equivalent of the Earth's atmosphere without any bother - its like the prison yard - but if we attempt to project to the planetary spheres or through time we are going to encounter police. The texts speak of this whether it be the Hekhalot texts of ascending the celestial palaces and defeating/charming the accusing angels with the use of divine names or making your way past Gnostic planetary archons.
I see so few accounts of astral experiences and so much of the desire-fulfillment brand of summoning magic that I wonder if the art is dying off. Do newcomers to the Western Mysteries realise how important these skills are in developing their full capacity as a being or do they think our tradition is now simply about building strange attractors or conjuring spirits to - get that job, pull that girl, make that money?
Astral projection is one of the most amazing experiences you can have as a magician not only is it more vivid and exhilarating than real life, but you are going to encounter genuine entities on their turf who if they don't kick you off are going to have unbelievable things to teach you, and you are partially reclaiming your heritage as a being of consciousness not one that is imprisoned in matter.
*If using Golden Dawn planetary correspondences, which I no longer do, rotate the Sefirot in your mind according to the ratio of the orbital spin of the planets they are associated with i.e. rotate Netzach the opposite way to the other Sefirot and at a much slower rate, etc.