I think some clarification needs to be made hear. Occult means that which is hidden not that which is demonic, magical and evil. People are either evil or good, it's a choice one makes as an individual. Astral projection is no more dark than lucid dreaming or meditation. i have studied the occult, comparitive religion , etc ,since a young child, and have never been involved in anything dark. Lucid dreaming and Astral Projection are often claimed to be related , but the relationship is greatly exaggerated. In lucid dreaming the Astal Body or Body of Light is slightly out of sync with the physical which results in what could be termed a dislocation of consciousness enabling dreaming. Dreams are a product of the subconscoius mind reviewing the experiences of the day, the past week events etc, and looking for possible solutions to problems which it prompts the conscious mind to " awaken " to. The subconscious mind however is visual and communicates via symbols ( many of which have personal meaning to the individual ) ,so the messages are not always understood. The main point is that the dreamer is in their very own, private mental space, but the Astral body is still in direct contact with the physical. Astral projection occurs when the body itself is asleep . the Body of Light may then seperate from the physical body completely and enter the Astral Plane. The Astral Plane has different levels or " layers " like an onion skin. The highest plane accessable to children and the pure in heart is " Heaven ", then there is " Paradise " . There are varying degrees of " Mental Planes " which are accessable via affinity. Affinity is the key here because these planes are vibrational . Like attracts like. These planes for the sake of convenience can be sub-divided into two main categories. Higher Astral Plane and Lower Astral Plane. One feeds the other. Creation originates from a series of Divine Emanations - the Astral emanations establishing eventually the world of form or " concrete reality ". Therefore, the Astral Plane needs a contact point with the physical - the lower astral Plane which is the exact same as the real world but more malleable, and does not conform to normal scientific laws. This is the part of the Astral Plane that is accessable to everyone. Hope this helps.