- out-of-body experience
- (OBE or OOBE)Also known as out-of-the-body experience. In biomedicine, both terms are used to denote atypeof" autoscopic phenomenon that may occur either during sleep or wakefulness, involving a sensation of being outside and above one's physical body (referred to as disembodiment). The experience is typically accompanied by " autoscopy, which in OBE involves the visual perception of one's physical body from a place outside of one's actual body. Contrary to auto-scopic doubles perceived in "heautoscopy, which tend to appear diaphanous, the physical body perceived in OBE tends to appear as solid and to cast a shadow. When instances of OBE and heautoscopy are experienced in rapid alternation, they are referred to as " double consciousness. It has been claimed that the lifetime prevalence of OBE may lie around 10%. OBE may be accompanied by other hallucinations or "illusions, such as "auditory hallucinations and "body pho-tism. Pathophysiologically, OBE is associated primarily with aberrant neurophysiological activity at the temporo-parieto-occipital junction. It has been claimed by the group headed by the American-Canadian neuropsychologist Michael A. Persinger (b. 1945) that OBE can be evoked experimentally with the aid of a " Koren helmet. In parapsychology, OBE tends to be attributed to true exteriorization of the self, the soul, or any other 'ethereal' part of the body. An example of such exteriorization is astral projection, a condition in which the so-called astral body is thought to part from the physical body, and to undertake a tour of the physical plane, thus allowing for the proper physical distance to render autoscopy possible. According to the American parapsychologist Raymond A. Moody, Jr. (b. 1944), OBE is also a common characteristic of "near-death experiences (NDEs). Synonyms for OBE found in the parapsychological literature include astral projection, ecsomatic experience, 'ecstasy with looking back at oneself', exterior-ization of sensibility, excursion of the ego, hallucination of physical duality, pseudoheautoscopy, syndrome of floating experience, and visuovestibular splitting of the somatosensory body image.ReferencesBlanke, O., Landis, T., Spinelli, L., Seeck, M. (2004). Out-of-body experience and autoscopy ofneurological origin. Brain, 127, 243-258. Brugger, P., Regard, M., Landis, Th. (1997). Illusory reduplication of one's own body: Phenomenology and classification of auto-scopic phenomena. Cognitive Neuropsychiatry, 2, 19-38.Moody, R.A. (1975). Life after life. New York, NY: Bantam Books.
Dictionary of Hallucinations. J.D. Blom. 2010.