Would you like to have a word with your long-departed
mother? How about experiencing a hug from your deceased grandfather?
The world's foremost expert on the near-death
experience and the afterlife says he did just that, and you can too, simply by using a
mirror and following the easy guidelines offered by Dr. Raymond Moody below. Moody's
technique involves gazing into a large mirror, an ancient technique to receive
visions. For example, the great seer Nostradamus used this method to see into the
future. Here is Dr. Moody's method:
(1) Get into a serene
state of mind by eliminating caffeine and dairy products the day before your
encounter. Eat simply, such as only fruit and vegetables.
(2) Go to the quietest
part of your home. Leave your wristwatch and all jewelry off. Wear only loose,
comfortable clothing. It is important to find a comfortable place where you can
truly relax. Unplug clocks and phones in that room so as not to be disturbed.
The goal is to ease the transition into an altered state of awareness. Posture is
important. Sit in a comfortable chair that will support the back of your head, even
if you are deeply relaxed. Place a large mirror in front of your chair and arrange
it so that you can gaze into it without having to hold your eyes at an uncomfortable
(3) Create a mood by
soothing yourself with beauty for about 15 minutes by looking or listening to works of
art. Art alone is enough to induce altered states in many people. Soft music
can go far to stimulate awareness.
(4) Gather photographs
and personal items of your departed loved one around you. Touch them and remember
your loved ones fondly. It is important to imprint that person firmly in your
mind. Doing so shouldn't be too difficult. A family album filled with great
memories stirs up the conscious as well as the unconscious mind. Family films and
videos do the same thing. Some people use articles of clothing associated with the
person. Such items include fishing poles, woodworking tools, chess sets, pipes,
glasses, old letters, and so on. Anything associated with that person is an
effective way of bringing up memories and feelings.
(5) In the twilight of
the day, light a candle and place it behind you. Dim light from behind usually works
the best, although you will have to experiment until you get the lighting just
right. The twilight hours is a time that seems to better inspire altered states in
many people. Later, when you become more proficient, you will find that mirror
gazing is possible even in bright lights.
(6) The technique
of mirror gazing itself is remarkably easy. Seated comfortably, relax and gaze into the
clear depth of the mirror without trying to see anything. Some compare this to
looking off into the distance. Properly relaxed, your arms will feel very heavy and
the tips of your fingers will tingle as though charged slightly by electricity.
tingling feeling almost always signals the beginning of the hypnagogic state (altered
(7) The mirror will
most likely become cloudy now. Some people report an image that resembles the sky
on a cloudy day. Others say that the mirror becomes darker. Whatever the case,
this change in the clarity of the mirror signals you that the visions are about to appear.
(8) Do not direct the
experience at first or pose particular questions when the visions appear. It is best
to first watch them unfold passively. Just let the images flow. Attempting to
guide the images decrease the likelihood that one will see images in the mirror.
After you have become more adept at mirror gazing, putting specific questions into your
mind before entering the trance state can be very helpful, especially if your
object is self-exploration or self-understanding. Attempting to direct images after
they have begun will usually cause them to fade away. Why this happens Dr. Moody is
not sure, but his guess is that conscious thought brings you out of the hypnagogic state
of mind where these images occur.
How long do the images last? Usually
less than a minute, especially for those unable to stay relaxed. Some of Dr. Moody's
subjects have been able to maintain images for as long as ten minutes on their first
attempt. The more proficient you become at mirror gazing, the longer you will see
images in the mirror.
Sometimes you may see nothing yet hear the
departed person talk or feel his or her touch. Some may experience all the
sensations of a given person, or location, without actually seeing anything.
Sometimes, like Nostradamus, you may have the sensation of passing into the mirror, or the
images may actually come out to be with you. Whatever the case, it will be obvious when
the visionary experience starts and when it is over.
Dr. Moody recommends that you record the
experience immediately after the session as you would a dream. Write it down in as
much detail as possible. Careful record keeping will help you know what to expect
the next time you mirror gaze. It will also show differences between sessions and
will eventually let you know how to get the most out of your mirror-gazing experience. Recording your experiences will also help you remember them as they really were.
If the visions do not occur during a session,
then it is necessary to consider some of the possible factors involved. The most
common reason for failing to see anything is trying too hard. People sometimes
report that the visions miraculously begin after they give up, or at least after they
entertain thoughts of doing so. Distractions are another common reason that visions
fail to take place. These can include outside noise and physical discomfort.
Perhaps the room is too hot or too cold, or maybe it is just too noisy. Distractions
also take place in the form of diet. Some people simply cannot have visionary
experiences after eating a heavy meal, though a light one is recommended since it elevates
your blood sugar and keeps you from focusing on your hunger.
Dr. Moody also emphasizes that exercise is an
important component of relaxation. Most people are far more relaxed after even
gentle exercise and have lower blood pressure and a slower heart rate to prove it.
If you are having difficulty relaxing, or letting your mind wander while mirror gazing, it
might be due to a lack of exercise.
Some people even use meditation and consider
the visions an interesting by-product.
"There should be no fear of death, for the death of the body is but a gentle passing to a much freer life." -
Copyright 2007 Near-Death
Experiences & the Afterlife