Yes, it is time for another beginner witchcraft book review… thing. I have an embarrassingly large to be read pile of books, about half of which are witchcraft/paganism/occult books, and I am trying to plow through as many as I can while I’m stuck in my house.
The latest book is Soul Flight: Astral Projection & The Magical Universe by Donald Tyson. I have had this book for a couple of years now, and figured it was time to finally read it. It is especially relevant because I have never, in the several years of my practice, done astral projection. I had a very basic understanding of what it was and what it was used for, but that was it.
As someone with little to no understanding of astral project, this book was phenomenal! It is split into two parts, the first being an overview of astral project, its history, and it’s uses in different traditions, and the second part being entirely theory and practice. Tyson uses a great variety of sources to back up his points and does not spare the details when it comes to both the history and practice of astral projection.
In the first section, Tyson goes over the extensive history of astral projection. My favorite part of this section of the book is that he breaks it up into periods of beliefs in which astral projection is involved. He associates the land of the fey in the earlier periods of civilization, the witch trials, religious phenomena, as well as alien abduction and military ventures into parapsychology all with astral projection. His assertion that all of these different beliefs and practices throughout human history have actually been traveling into the astral world. As someone who absolutely loves to find cross cultural connections throughout history with modern beliefs and practices, this idea was fascinating! Not only that, but Tyson’s continued reference to how perceptions make up reality was beautifully done and helped tie the themes of the book together.
The second half of the book is all theory, method, and practice. Tyson starts the first few chapters of the section with different practices that have been used throughout history to achieve astral projection in a consistent way. He goes over ritual and tools that can be used such as tarot cards, runes, pathworking, and symbols to trigger desired cognitive responses. Another important aspect to the practice section is that he goes over the different aspects of the astral world including guides, different types of spirits and entities, as well as the proper etiquette and protection techniques to follow when astral traveling.
I am still training and practicing for astral projection, so I can’t speak to the effectiveness of the actual ritual and method Tyson describes, but he does keep it general enough that it is easy to personalize and adapt to your own preferences for astral projection. I love that he also emphasizes that our experiences and perceptions are all unique, so our experience with astral project will be different than anyone else’s and it’s important to go with what feels right and develop a method that works for you.
For anyone interested in getting into astral projection, I think Soul Flight is a perfect first step to gain a better understanding of its history and practice. This is a great resource for anyone wanting to do spirit work as well, or who might be looking into traditional witchcraft and occult practices. Check it out and let me know what you think!