(Robert Monroe was one of the most widely respected authorities in the field of astral projection. )
Relax the body. According to Monroe, "the ability to relax is the first prerequisite, perhaps even the first step itself" to having an OBE (out of body experience). This includes both the physical and mental relaxation. Monroe does not suggest a method of attaining this relaxation, although Progressive Muscle relaxation, coupled with deep breathing exercises (inhale 1, exhale 2, inhale 3.... until 50 or 100) work well.
Enter the state bordering sleep, the 'hypnagogic' state. Once again, Monroe doesn't recommend any specific method of doing this.
One way is to hold your forearm up, while keeping your upper arm on the bed, or ground. As you start to fall asleep, your arm will fall, and you will awaken again. With practice, you can learn to control the hypnagogic state without using your arm.
Another method is to concentrate on an object. When other images start to enter your thoughts, you have entered the hypnagogic state. Passively watch these images. This will also help you maintain this state of near-sleep. Monroe calls this state of near sleep "condition A."
Deepen the hypnagogic state. Begin to clear your mind. Observe your field of vision through your closed eyes. Do nothing more for a while, simply look through your closed eyelids at the blackness in front of you. After a while, you may notice light patterns, these are simply neural discharges. They have no specific effect, so ignore them. When they cease, you have entered what Monroe calls Condition B. From here, continue into a deeper state of relaxation, which Monroe calls Condition C. This is a state of such relaxation that you lose all awareness of the body and sensory stimulation. You feel like you are in a void in which your only source of stimulation will be your own thoughts.
If you have voluntarily induced Condition C, you are in an ideal state for leaving your body. If so, Monroe calls that state Condition D, and suggests that the ideal time to reach it is in the morning or after a short nap.
Enter a state of Vibration. This is the most important part of the technique, and the most vaguely described. Many projectors have noted these vibrations at the onset of projection, experienced as a mild tingling, or like electrical pulses throughout the body. Their cause is a mystery, but some speculate that they may be a side effect of the astral body trying to leave the physical one. To enter the vibrational state, Monroe offers the following directions:
1. Remove all jewelry or other items that might be touching your skin.
2. Darken the room so that no light can be seen through your eyelids, but do not shut out all light.
3. Lie down with your body along a north-south axis, with your head pointed toward magnetic north.
4. Loosen all clothing, but keep covered so that you are slightly warmer than might normally be comfortable.
5. Be sure you are in a location where, and at a time when, there will be absolutely no noise to disturb you.
6. Enter a state of relaxation
7. Give yourself the mental suggestion that you will remember all that occurs during the upcoming session that will be beneficial to your well-being. Repeat this five times.
8. Proceed to breath through your half-open mouth.
9. As you breath, concentrate on the void in front of you.
10. Select a point a foot away from your forehead, then change your point of mental reference to six feet.
11. Turn the point 90 degrees upward by drawing an imaginary line parallel to your body axis up and above your head. Focus there and reach out for the vibrations at that point and bring them back into your body.
Even if you don't know what these vibrations are, you will know when you have achieved contact with them.
Learn to control the vibrational state. Practice controlling them by mentally pushing them into your head, down to your toes, making them surge throughout your entire body, and producing vibrational waves from head to foot. To produce this wave effect, concentrate of the vibrations and mentally push a wave out of your head and guide it down your body. Practice this until you can induce these waves on command. Once you have control of the vibrational state, you are ready to leave the body.
Begin with a partial separation. The key here is thought control. Keep your mind firmly focused on the idea of leaving the body. Do not let it wander. Stray thought might cause you to lose control of the state. Now, having entered the vibrational state, begin exploring the OBE by releasing a hand or a foot of the "second body". Monroe suggests that you extend a limb until it comes in contact with a familiar object, such as a wall near your bed. Then push it through the object. Return the limb by placing it back into coincidence with the physical one, decrease the vibrational rate, and then terminate the experiment. Lie quietly until you have fully returned to normal. This exercise will prepare you for full separation.
Disassociate yourself from the body. Monroe suggests two methods for this.
One method is to lift out of the body. To do this, think about getting lighter and lighter after entering this vibrational state. Think about how nice it would be to float upward. Keep this thought in mind at all costs and let no extraneous thoughts interrupt it. An OBE will occur naturally at this point.
Another method is the "Rotation method" or "roll-out" technique. When you have achieved the vibrational state, try to roll over as if you were turning over in bed. Do not attempt to roll over physically. Try to twist your body from the top and virtually roll over into your second body right out of your physical self.
At this point, you will be out of the body but next to it. Think of floating upward, and you should find yourself floating above the body.
Monroe suggests you begin with the lift-out method, but argues that both are equally efficacious.
~from Maat's Book of Shadows