It was 1982 or 83, I cannot remember. I was a child and much time has gone by since that time. I have talked about this experience many times. I am glad to do it here.
I was 7 or 8 years old. I, my mom, and sister went for a hike in a place where there was a river, but I don't know the name of the place. At some point, I crossed the river, leaping from one rock to another as children do. I slipped and instinctively I grabbed a rock. My grip was not steady and I could not hold for long. Water was not covering my head, so I could breathe normally.
After a few seconds, I found myself out of this dimension. I was no longer there. What I could 'see' was a canvas. But 'see' is a wrong term because it wasn't with my eyes. It was as if I were watching a television or watching in a movie hall. I saw a few meaningful scenes from my brief life were being showed. I remembered a birthday party. I cannot tell how long the life review lasted. Over there time did not exist, just like this world did not exist, and I was neither scared nor glad. I was watching my life movie without emotions, as if it were totally normal. I could hear no voices or else.
Suddenly, I felt something pulling my arm, and my mind came back to the river and to my body. My sister, realizing I was in danger, was helping me. I don't know how long it took. I haven't the slightest idea. I believe, trying to rebuild the situation, no longer than a minute but maybe 30 seconds. The relevant thing, in my opinion, was that at that time I could not have, and I hadn't had any kind of conditioning. I did not know about near death experiences, just like I didn't know about religion and such. I have never been with my head under water, and I did not bump my head. I just slipped and I was holding not to be carried away by the stream. Maybe, hadn't my sister noticed me, or hadn't she helped me timely, in a short time I would have lost my strength and I would have died, drowning after bumping my head. This is the explanation I gave myself as an adult. I didn't mention it to my sister or my mother, but I have a very vivid recollection of a 'hike' outside time and space, and of that 'film' of my brief life, aseptically viewed and with no emotion. Reading as an adult about other persons' experiences, I think mine was different, because of my age and because I had a near death experience before being even hurt. It was as if I was at a crossroad, a life-death one, of my path. Other times, in my life, I had incidents, but it never occurred to me of having an experience like that one.
Date NDE Occurred: 1983
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Drowning. Other: perfettamente integro ma a rischio di vita
I was holding onto a rock, in the middle of a river, but with my head outside water. Yet, considering my age and my weak body, yes, I was in danger for my life in case I had lost my grip.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Neither pleasant NOR distressing
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? No
I lost awareness of my body
How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal everyday consciousness and alertness? More consciousness and alertness than normal Difficult to explain. Although I could not see my surroundings and my body, I felt very alert and aware.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? If by awareness we mean aware of oneself, I certainly was, despite in that time and space, without time and space, such question had no meaning.
Were your thoughts speeded up? Faster than usual
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
I was flung into a place where such concepts had no sense.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? No
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. During the experience, I felt and lived a situation completely new to me, because of my age back then.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Itâ€™s difficult. During the experience, I could hear, but not with my ears...it was as if I could see and hear with my soul.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? No
Did you see any beings in your experience? I sensed their presence
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No
The experience included: Void
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? No
Did you see an unearthly light? Yes Like a movie. Images of myself. This was nothing earthly.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm A space-less and timeless dimension, consequently devoid of problems.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Peace, no other feeling.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Relief or calmness
Did you have a feeling of joy? No
Did you feel a sense of harmony or unity with the universe? I felt united or one with the world
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe Although in an emotionless experience, I felt I was a part of a 'whole'.
The experience included: Life review
Did scenes from your past come back to you? I remembered many past events Like in a movie, images of my life.
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
Did you come to a border or point of no return? No
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What importance did you place on your religious/spiritual life prior to your experience? Unknown
What was your religion prior to your experience? Do not know. come bimbo non avevo ancora nessuna idea o opinione, ne preconcetto.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes Earlier, I had no ideas about that.
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? Other or several faiths Credo in una dimensione individuale della spiitualità. Diffido delle sovrastrutture, a cominciare dalle religioni di massa, seppur mi incuriosiscono.
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was entirely not consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience I had no experience; I was a small child at the time. Really, I had no ideas about this.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I began wondering about the meaning of life and death.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? No
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I sensed their presence
Did you encounter or become aware of any beings who previously lived on earth who are described by name in religions (for example: Jesus, Muhammad, Buddha, etc.)? No
During your experience, did you gain information about premortal existence? Yes Era chiaro che era tutto già accadut. non lo so come lo sapessi, ma lo sapevo.
During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? Yes I must say yes always regarding this awareness of myself and of the whole, which was permeating me.
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? Unknown
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? No
Do you believe in the existence of God after your experience? God definitely exists
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? Uncertain Special and ordinary at once. Or special because ordinary. In that condition, it was as if I knew it was all normal, as a natural mechanism, but not because of this less important, although normal.
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Unknown
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Yes
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? Unknown
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Yes. No one told me anything, but I knew perfectly, within myself, like an awareness, that the vision of my life was a closing page, but only of a book.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? Unknown
Do you fear death after your experience? I do not fear death
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Unknown
Were you fearful living your life after your experience? Slightly fearful in living my earthly life
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Unknown
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant after your experience? Are meaningful and significant
Did you gain information about how to live our lives? No
During your experience, did you gain information about life's difficulties, challenges and hardships? No
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Unknown
During your experience, did you gain information about love? No
Were you compassionate after your experience? Moderately compassionate toward others
What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? My life prior to the experience was virtually none. What a 7 or 8 years old kid may have. This event, undoubtedly, brought me closer to certain themes and provided me with a certainty: it's not all here.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Uncertain I don't know whether it influenced the making of my character, but I think so.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes It is as if there is a dimension without either space or time, but only awareness and calmness. The mind is free in an astonishing world. It's not easy to put into words, not at all.
How accurately do you remember the experience in comparison to other life events that occurred around the time of the experience? I remember the experience more accurately than other life events that occurred around the time of the experience. It's a crystal clear recollection, although I was only 7 or 8 years old.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? No
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? There is a place and a time, which are neither time nor a place, of pure peace and awareness. All our earthly dramas, real or supposed, vanish in an instant.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I spoke with a few persons, two or three, and after many years. A friend of mine was skeptic and supplied me with an implausible scientific explanation, which bothered me. A friend, who was mentally more open, believed me and listened to me with great interest.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real It was as real as I waking up in the morning was, and breathing was.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real. A crystal clear recollection. I'm not crazy. I am firmly grounded in reality. I know what happened and what I felt.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? It's strange I did not die and yet I lived it. Why? Isn't destiny written? Can there be variations or changes? I insist that the peculiar character was that I was so young, and the total absence of pre-conceptions that could justify a pre-formed vision in my brain or in my knowledge. It was a very beautiful experience, which gave me serenity to face my life, aware of a continuation.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? No, thank you.