"...know and remember, that you are more than your physical body."

— Robert Monroe, author, teacher, researcher, explorer

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Robert Monroe: The Explorer of the Out-of-Body Experience

by Scott Mowry


The late Robert Allan Monroe (1915-1995) was a man of an extraordinary vision and a relenteless curiousity. He lived his amazing life as if he were on a single-minded quest to unlock the long held secrets of who and what we really are, as human beings.

He arrived at the overwhelming conclusion that we are more than our physical bodies. Much more, as he was to discover –– time and time again.

Robert Monroe was easily, one of the world's leading pioneers in the study of human consciousness, dreams, remote viewing and expanding awareness.

He virtually invented the term "out-of-body experience", a phrase that has become common place for the understanding and the explanation of the many realms of consciousness.

As far back as 1958 and at the age of 42, Mr. Monroe began to experiment with sleep-learning, and he experienced an unusual sensation that was commonly referred to during that time period as an "astral projection". However, he felt uncomfortable with that terminology and re-named this process as an out-of-body experience or "OBE". He concluded that this term was much more graphic and to the point.

He described an OBE as consciously leaving his body, yet being able to observe it from above as it lay in the bed below him.

"An out-of-body experience is state of being, a state of awareness, a state of action… separate and apart from the physical body," Mr. Monroe explained. "This separateness can be two inches or 2,000 miles, or more. You can think, act and perceive in this state, much as you do physically, with a few exceptions."

At first, he found these experiences frightening and alarming, and sought medical treatment to deal with the trauma he suffered. Eventually, through practice, he learned to surrender to the process and became adept at controlling and mastering it.

As his comfort level grew, Mr. Monroe began to seriously dedicate himself to understanding the out-of-body experience and the deeper layers of human consciousness. Leaving behind a thriving position as an advertising executive, he created a laboratory on his own property to further investigate these mysterious phenomenons.

Ultimately, he documented all of his research into his first book, "Journeys Out of the Body," published in 1971, which became an international best seller and still remains in print to this day.

He made many important discoveries during this time period. He concluded that approximately 25% of the human population throughout the world has an out-of-body experience take place that they are aware of, at least once during their lifetime.

Sensing an opportunity and market before him, Mr. Monroe, and a growing group of fellow researchers, began to work on methods of inducing and controlling this and other forms of consciousness in a permanent laboratory setting. This research led to the development of a noninvasive and easy to use audio-guidance technology known as hemispheric synchronization or Hemi-Sync®.

In 1974, the original research group was expanded to become The Monroe Institute®, an organization dedicated to conducting seminars in the control and exploration of human consciousness. A year later, Mr. Monroe was issued the first of three patents for the Hemi-Sync® method of altering brain states through sound.

Hemi-Sync® was the end result of doing exploration and research into practical methods of accelerated learning through expanded forms of consciousness. One of the outcomes of his work was a method and technique for inducing relaxation and sleep.

The technique employs a system of audio pulses that create a frequency following response in the human brain. This technique made it possible for the average person to maintain specific stages of sleep for any depth or duration, as well as, to experience out of body situations and to go into other realms of existence.

One of the main aspects of the Institute's work was to create its Gateway Voyage program, a training course that used binaural soundtracks to facilitate exploration and replication of specific altered states of consciousness known as Focus levels.

The Gateway Voyage is available to this day in two distinct forms; 1) a six-day intensive of exercises using custom-designed sound booths (CHEC units) and including lectures (the Gateway Voyage proper), and 2) a more compact version that comes as set of six CDs, known as the Gateway Experience audio course.

Mr. Monroe authored two additional books, "Far Journeys" in 1985 and "Ultimate Journey" in 1994, both of which remain in print. Yet another recommended book about his life is "The Journey of Robert Monroe", authored by Ronald Russell.

The Monroe Institute (TMI), located in Faber, Virginia, remains to this day, a non-profit education and research foundation "devoted to the exploration of human consciousness".

It continues to be a thriving and vital organization that draws explorers and visitors from around the world for lectures, workshops, training seminars and a variety of special events.

Throughout his incredible lifetime, Robert Monroe's mantra he was often heard to say was, "know and remember, that you are more than your physical body." He would prove the truth of this statement nearly every day of his remarkable life.

On April 17, 1995, Mr. Monroe took his final out-of-body experience, leaving this Earthly plane and a lifetime of valuable research, information and field study behind. His work lives on in the enormously successful Monroe Institute®, the Hemi-Sync® line, the Gateway Voyage®, the Gateway Experience® and many other Monroe Products.

A visit to the Monroe Institue is a highly recommended one for those who wish to learn more about the pioneering work of the Robert Monroe and the great legacy of his explorations into the great mysteries of human consciousness.

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