Just quickly I saw a mountain when in the clouds, then at the top of that was the city. But how does that differ from pondering about the pyramids and then dreaming/astral projecting you are there? If you think that was projecting I still don't understand how you think its different.
Yes lucid you are aware but you are also aware in an obe. So they are the same in that regard. And I wouldn't say the quality is much different at all. I've done it many times(well had that typical obe experience) and I find the quality the same. The only difference I tend to find is that its generally darker when moving around my house because the lights are off. But that doesn't mean its not my mind creating that scene(how would anyone know for sure?). So the only thing that people use to separate them is the sensation of leaving the body, seeing the body and being in your house. And all of this the mind can create. The vibrations and sounds I think are just because your body is numb from being close to sleep(so drifting into dreaming).
I noticed you typed 'mostly' in regards to nothing happening during astral when sitting on a sofa, so anotherwords sometimes something does happen(so I'm not sure how you can use that as a way to say its different). Also I'm not sure what you mean exactly where you say you have never had a dream(lucid or not) where you are left to your own devices. Left to your own devices means.. " If someone is left to their own devices, they are not controlled and can do what they want."
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And lucid dreaming is exactly being left to your own devices. You are not controlled and can do whatever you want. And you cant use an environment(so the bedroom) as a way to say one is not scenario driven. If someone is expecting to leave the body then the mind can easily create that 'experience' especially if someone has read about what the experience is supposed to feel like.
By "left to my own devices" I don't mean just lucidity. I mean not involved in some scenerio. Dreams, for me, even lucid ones, always carry a story. I'm a zombie fighter, a dragon is in a storm after us, or some other plotline etc etc. To me these are clearly not OBEs lucid or not. Mental mechanations Mabey, training perhaps.. Never in a dream am I just there and can walk down the street or just sit on the grass. Of course some OBEs something does happen but it's not like a plot driven story.
Vibrations and noises. Vibrations, again for me, are not simply going numb. They can be powerful waves of sensation ( energy?) pulsing through the body. I'm not sure how that can be related to going numb. Even in the milder forms it's a deep vibration in my chest. Nothing like novacaine or sitting on your arm to long.
The "real time world" is probably some sort of shadow world mirroring this one. I have seen it change enough ( though it could just be me) to know that it's not exactly this one, but at the same time I have had enough verifying experiences to realize there is a solid connection.
Some people want to call everything happening that is not physical a dream or hallucination. I can't do that. For me OBEs do not follow the pattern of dreams. There is a clear difference.
Yes the mind can create a "dream" where one leaves the body. But I have had enough people come to me with spontaneous OBEs that have never even considered the possibility or done any real reading on the subject. I was one of them. Then there are the myriad of problems people encounter. Getting their head stuck in while their body floats out, one leg is still stuck in or the hip won't separate. These are not always people trying to do this, some are just people who have the experience and jump online to find out what the hell is happening and inevitably end up finding us here on UM. There is a commonality to these experiences outside of reading or studying about them that simply cannot be defined as suggestion. I have seen way to much to consider that possibility. Possibly a shared quirk of conciousness because we are all humans with similar brains, but even that is hard to swollow given its pointedly out of body theme. I mean honestly why would some random mom frantically jump on the internet because she felt like her body floated out but her head got stuck in and she has never heard of such a thing, thereby joining the ranks of many others. Dream... Mabey ❔❔❔❔❔maby aliens 👽