Lange has recently returned from a tour of duty with an oil exploration and pipeline company in the Near East. He had been incarcerated in an Arab jail for a number of months under almost inhumane conditions. Wrongly.|
While in the Arabian jail, to preserve his sanity, Lange had developed the ability to induce OOBE's. He didn't understand what was happening to him, he thought they were merely hallucinations.
The setting is the Gulf Coast of Mississippi in the late 1980's when the U.S. oil giants had pulled out of the Arabian Gulf area. He was now back in the States looking for a job.
Rhyme, a lovely young woman, is the ward and 'strong right arm' of George Westwood, an entrepreneur involved with the development of a fabulous new technology that turns out to be a system of communication with other time frames.
Rhyme hires Lange and is attracted to him in spite of the differences in their ages. She is a student of the occult and lays the Tarot cards about Lange. They promise her 'Happiness and Joy'.
Rhyme seduces Lange and decides he is her soul mate. She had been striving for OOBE's for a number of years, unsuccessfully.
She learns that Lange can achieve these conditions. They work on it together, very successfully.
On their first 'real journey' they manage a trip into the far future where they are put in touch with a team of doctors who assist them in rejuvenating Lange so he eventually becomes the same age as Rhyme.
On their next attempt they visit an 'Orientation Platform' in the Astral World where they meet with Rhyme's grandmother, Cynthia, who, before her death, had been a major factor in Rhyme's early life. Rhyme's mother had died at childbirth.
Lange introduces Rhyme to his best friend, Roddy McPhail and Roddy's wife, Lottie. Roddy goes to work with Lange at the laboratory.
Lange moves in with Rhyme. There are a number of excursions into the Astral realms. On two they are given rides in a UFO. The first of these is an excursion into the adjoining territories of 'Athe'. On another occasion they take a friend along and they are given a tour of the two lover levels. The 'Orientation' is on the 'third level'.
Lange and Rhyme move in with George, who is a bachelor with a housekeeper, Katrina, whom Rhyme considers her best friend.
They do get married at the end of this book and leave for a short honeymoon in New Orleans. This is where 'Book Two' begins.
This story adheres strictly to the "Hermetic Tradition." There is a rather complete explanation of these tenets and the story does not deviate for their principles.
Also included are seven treatises, the result of a number of meditations by Lange, and by Rhyme, independently and together.
We have here a pretty good guide to achieving the same results (OOBE's) by your own efforts, if you care to try these tenets and the story does not deviate for their principles.