Out of Body Experience
Out of Body Experience or OBE is a common psychological phenomena that many people experience at some point in their life. People often describe this in relation to near death experiences or when unconscious. They describe the sensation of floating above their body and watching their body as though they were completely detached from it. They describe a feeling of floating above the action, watching what is going on around them. Researchers use the term OBE in place of more belief centered terms such as astral-projection or spirit-walking.
The sensation is often associated with Near-Death-Experiences and by paranormal believers as the 'soul' or 'essence' of a person being freed from their earthy body. It is often used as evidence for the existence of a soul or for an afterlife, however for neuroscientists, the sensation is an internal manifestation within the patients mind and can be induced by drugs, lack of sleep, brain injuries and oxygen starvation, amongst other brain influences.
Tests have been done using things like objects hidden on high shelves, but despite claims to the contrary, no good evidence has ever been demonstrated for the belief that the patient's conscious awareness somehow can separate from the physical body. Their sensations are almost certainly a creation of a dream-like state that they may remember on waking.