Whether or not astral projection is dangerous is somewhat of an enigma. Because there is not much science even supporting its existence, to determine whether or not it’s safe is difficult. The information surrounding this is shaky at best and superstition at worst.
The are two schools of thought surrounding the risks of astral travel and most revolve around the occult. Most agree that the physiological risks to astral projection are minor as you are physically not doing all that much. Much of the perceived risk is both psychological and spiritual.
As mentioned, very little formal studies have been done regarding out of body experiences so there are many schools of thought that exist on its psychological implications. Some seem to think that experimenting with astral projection holds similar risks to experimenting with psychedelics. It risks making you go crazy. I actually had a friend ask me last week if I was concerned about possibly loosing my mind with my deepening experimentation. I had never really thought about it but as it relates to meditation, astral projection and lucid dreaming because the processes are so natural. My beleif has always been that these are natural human skills that lay dormant because of cultural conditioning. I’m just deactivating my psychic muscle (if you want to call it that).
As an aside on psychedelics, studies have shown that much of the risks associating psychedelics to mental illness lie in genetic predisposition. There is a certain portion of our population who are at higher risk to developes condition such as Schizophrenia or other delusional disorders and the consumption of psychedelics has shown to trigger it or induce its onset. It has shown to activate existing dormant mental conditions at times. There are cases on the other hand it mental conditions being triggered with heroic doses. There are risks when consuming entheogens.
Some believe that the simple act of altering consciousness can lead to delusions. It’s thought that perceptional differentiation becomes vague with deeper experimentation. Consuming a substance and naturally inducing altered states is where the variance in risks lie. Yes you are altering your conciousness but doing it naturally is actually healthy. The human brain works on many frequencies for a reason. If one was not ready to experience a state of mind than their mind would not allow for the experience. Plain and simple, you can only induce what you believe is possible so shattering your entire life paradigm overnight is likely not going to happen.
Questionned more than the psychological implications are the spiritual risks of astral travel. Most orthodox religion views astral projection as intrinsically evil. It is said to be a dogma to trap the mind of non-believers. This view on its own seems dogmatic because it discourages exploration and self understanding. It sounds like fear rhetoric to me.
Another concern is that because your astral body is leaving your physical body, this leaves your physical body susseptible to demonic possession. Because you leave your body, another entity hijacks it. Many more experienced travellers have experienced this and according to Robert Bruce (leading authority) this just is not possible. He stipulates that when you astral project, your etheric body is not leaving your physical body but projecting a double of itself. It’s just your perception that changes focus from individual to universal.
People have fears as it relate to extradementional entities in general. Can they be hurt outside their body. Can their astral body be attacked by negative forces or spirits. It is said that ones silver cord (the link connecting your spiritual and physical bodies) cannot be severed but when looking at astral travel objectively, these are legit concerns because anyone who has taken to serious practice has felt or seen foreign energies and entities.
Your body is a meat vehicle being driven by your self. Your self is your true indentity and can exist without you biological vehicle. What links the two is your silver cord. It is said that when your silver cord is servered, your body dies. Common beleif is that no outside spiritual force can sever your silver cord making the risks of spiritual attacks relatively low. Stories of spiritual attacks do exist on the other hand. This is why some psychic self defence is important. If not for the possibility that something really scary and weird happen but for you own confidence and sanity.
You need to approach astral projection with a brave curiosity so to explore this, you need to equip yourself. Having some basic self defence it the only prudent way to take on this practice. It will help reduce fear at the very least which is half the battle.