The reason why I never cottoned on, is because the true experience of becoming the Focus-15 state, is an incredibly more profound sense of reality than the somewhat puny objective notion of “no time”....
.... But these states, such as Focus 12, are not something we experience... they are something we become.
You do not experience the state, you BECOME it, and in this sentence lies the key difference between objective and subjective reality.
I go in spurts on when I visit the forum, so I apologize for missing this thread earlier. I have written once before that so many of your experiences resonate with my own. I had to smile as I read this post of yours. The first time I experienced this, I had no idea what I was doing. I wasn't trying phasing (never heard of it at that point). I also wasn't trying for OBE or anything else. I was wide awake and sitting lotus style. I was attempting to simply practice/work with my visualization/sense skills.
I have my own 'place' that I go to mentally which appears to work similarly to what you call your 'mental rundown'. I don't see everything vividly as if it were real, but as you've described so often, I sense it more than see it externally. I perceive general things, but I see, feel, smell, etc what I call glimpses of things around me. As opposed to visually seeing everything as external objects.
One day while working with my senses/visualization I was flying around the sky with an eagle I had created for my scene. At one point we were high in the air and it took off in a nose dive towards the water below. I followed it, parallel with it. But then I noticed that my perception began switching back and forth. One second I was me watching the eagle. The other second I was the eagle. As that happened I noticed it immediately and that resulted in my switching back to my parallel view. Intrigued I let go again and simple allowed things to happen. Again I was the eagle. I had a long beak, sharp claws huge wings. I could feel everything distinctley as 'me'. It was the neatest sensation.
Several sessions later I had a similar experience with a tree. For some reason, I was having trouble hearing a nearby being, I simply walked towards a tree and stepped into it. Immediately I became the tree. I recognized the experience and consciously worked on holding the experience. I think the ego tends to try and analyze everything that happens and it can't. So you end up in this battle between analyzing and categorizing an experience versus simply experiencing the experience. So I would fluctuate every few seconds between being inside the tree and looking out and actually being the tree. I had leaves, branches and roots. And the cool dirt felt really neat on my roots!
I'm only familiar with Monro and Focus levels through this board. And I've read about your 4 areas of consciousness model as well. So if I'm correct in my understanding of them, what I was experiencing was somewhere in F12-F15 of Monroe model and 2oC in your model. Is that correct? It would make sense, because I didn't perceive myself very deep or distant in relation to my physical awareness. Normally during what I call my 'true astral experiences' (for lack of better words) I have no sense of physical reality at all.
Within these states, for example, you can become a musical chord, or you can become a kaleidoscope of colour. What mean is, you are not standing there seeing a kaleidoscope of colour, you BECOME it. Likewise, with sound, you don’t just stand there hearing sound, you BECOME the actual sound, you travel along the wave and your whole sense of being reverberates with it throughout multiple dimensions. Words simply cannot explain the sheer intensity of the beauty of these experiences. The feelings are profoundly intense and ecstatic to the point where you feel like every fibre of your being is dancing, singing, and revelling in the unexplainably intense and exquisite joy of the experience.
I must admit that this is one of my most profound experiences. I'm not sure I would classify this as being in the altered state that you describe here, because at the time I was fully aware of my physical body. I was simply sitting and listening to some chant music, although I wasn't chanting with it. I like the piece for the musical tones and pitches it includes. It literally resonates with me. About half way through the piece I began feeling parts of my physical body resonate with the notes. The interesting thing was that different parts would resonate to different notes. And the parts would vibrate exactly like strings on an instrument. As I allowed this to happen and enjoyed it. I then began to perceive colors. The notes were becoming not only sound, but colors. Different notes would create different colors and I could feel the notes and see the colors. It was indescribable. Of course, before I could continue to see what else would happen, the piece was over.
Anyways, I just thought I would share some specific examples of what you've described, as I hadn't seen any examples given to further elaborate your points.