I wanted to share this article with you that I read a short while back, written by Fred, the administrator of Explorations in Consciousness.
I was always unsure about the state of mind known as Focus 10, and it helped me IMMENSELY in recognizing that I was, indeed, getting to that state… and getting there rather easily.
I’ll put the first bit here just to wet your appetite.
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The concept of phasing
For those unfamiliar with the focus levels a little background is in order. The story goes back to Robert A. Monroe, who began to experience involuntary Out of Body Experiences (OBE) in 1957. These early experiences have been documented in his first book “Journeys out of the body” (Monroe, 1971). It was also during this time that Monroe discovered that sound patterns could induce certain states of consciousness, which eventually led to the creation of the Monroe Institute and patented sound technology called Hemi-Sync.
While the early experiences of Monroe were often characterized by a sensation of leaving the body his development took a different turn in later years. Monroe discovered the “quick-switch”, which allowed him to move from one “location” to another in an instant by stretching or reaching out with his consciousness. Eventually, this led Monroe to consider the “second body” to be no more than “local traffic”–mere habit due to the physical experience (Atwater, 2001). Thus, the implicit philosophical background behind ‘phasing’ is that there is no such thing as “leaving the body”, since consciousness is never really ‘in the body’ to begin with. Rather, all experiences which constitute things such as “trance”, “hypnosis”, “altered states”, “meditation”, “OBEs”, and “astral projections” are simply variations on the same theme where consciousness is focused in different ways and in different degrees away from the physical.
The term phasing is a metaphor derived from physics, which conceptualizes consciousness as a waveform that can either be aligned or non-aligned with physical reality. For example, when we are 100% phased into the physical were are considered perfectly aligned with normal physical input and waking reality. In Monroe speak, this is called C-1 consciousness or primary phasing. As consciousness moves further away from the physical (and the senses) consciousness is said to phase into other “focus levels”. The first of these is focus 10 – the state of mind awake/body asleep.
Achieving the focus 10 state is facilitated by tapes or CD’s, which utilize binaural beats to influence brain wave patterns in the person listening to them. These tapes are sold as part of a set of tapes/CDs called The Gateway Experience by the Monroe Institute. In particular, the set of tapes (Wave I) of the Gateway Experience is geared towards establishing the focus 10 state, while subsequent series (Wave II to VI) gradually increase the phase shift away from the physical. These focus levels have been described as follows (Monroe, 1994, p. 248):
Focus 10: Mind Awake/Body Asleep
Focus 12: A state of expanded awareness
Focus 15: State of no time
Focus 21: The edge of time/space where it is possible to contact other energy systems.
It is important to realize these focus levels are merely arbitrary numbers and signposts to identify the state of consciousness one is in. In case you’re wondering, there is no focus 14 or focus 16. However, beyond focus 21, several other focus levels have been identified further removed from the physical, and which involve among other systems the perception of belief system territories (” astral planes”). Thus, The Gateway Experience is meant as a platform from which to explore further on your own. For more information, I suggest you visit the website at the Monroe Institute at www.monroeinstitute.org.
It’s a long read… but a very worthwhile one, in my opinion.
I hope this article helps you as much as it helped me.