I woke up from a nap on the couch, stood up, and walked to the restroom. I could feel my heart beating, but didn't think anything of it. I've had heart palpitations my whole life, so this was nothing out of the ordinary. After I used the restroom and was about to walk out, I felt my heart beating fast again and then it happened. My heart started beating fast, and then slowed down to half a normal tempo. And then, nothing. I had just enough time to think; ‘This isn't good,’ and then everything went black. My heart had stopped. I was dead before I hit the floor. I don't even remember falling—everything was just gone. I remember there was sort of a darkness all around. I was moving forward through the darkness, but don't know if I was floating or walking. There was some kind of ‘light’ ahead, but it wasn't like any kind of light I can describe. It was light but it didn't seem to make anything around it brighter. I felt like I was approaching a cliff. Difficult to explain how there could be a cliff, since there seemed to be no ‘ground.’ Ahead of me were… people? I couldn't see them but felt them ahead of me, past the cliff. The ‘light’ was out in front of them, so I could only make out forms, like silhouettes. There were many of them, like a crowd that was shoulder to shoulder. I remembered something about my grandmother, who passed in 1999. I don't know if she was there or if maybe I was looking for her. As I was on the cliff, still heading toward the group, I came to understand that the group was trying to tell me to go back. I didn't make a conscious effort or decision to go back, but I remember the group getting further and further away from me. I then began to sense my body again, as if I were in two places at once. The darkness was starting to fade, and I felt I was returning to my body. I awoke with difficulty and found myself lying on the floor. I was unable to move and my breathing was labored. The longer I lay on the floor, the further away the darkness became. I noticed that I had a headache and realized I must have hit the back of my head on the wall when I fell. I rested on the floor an indefinite amount of time and finally worked up enough strength to crawl to the telephone and call an ambulance. The paramedics arrived to find me on the floor, hyperventilating, with blood pressure fluctuating wildly from extremely high to unreadably low, and my heart in fibrillation. I was taken to the hospital, and after about two to three hours, my heart began to beat regularly. I stayed in the hospital under observation for two days.
Date NDE Occurred: August 2008
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Other Heart fibrillation.
My heart stopped and then restarted in arrhythmia.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Neither pleasant NOR distressing
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? Normal consciousness and alertness
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? I'm not sure.
Were your thoughts speeded up? No
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? No
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. I didn't notice any difference.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I didn't notice any difference.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
The experience included: Tunnel
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Uncertain I was in darkness, and I was moving toward a kind of light.
The experience included: Presence of deceased persons
Did you see any beings in your experience? I sensed their presence
The experience included: Void
The experience included: Darkness
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? A light clearly of mystical or other-worldly origin
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm Darkness surrounded me. I moved forward but was unsure if I was walking or floating. I was moving toward a light, but the light didn't illuminate anything.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I never thought about it. I don't remember what I felt.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? No
Did you have a feeling of joy? No
Did you feel a sense of harmony or unity with the universe? No
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? No
Did scenes from your past come back to you? No
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Yes The boundary felt more like a cliff. But it was the people that were trying to tell me to go back, not the cliff.
Did you come to a border or point of no return? I came to a barrier that I was not permitted to cross; or was sent back against my will
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What importance did you place on your religious/spiritual life prior to your experience? Not important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Do not know Raised Methodist. Not religious at time of event.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? No
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Not important to me
What is your religion now? Do not know
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was both consistent and not consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience You need another option. This had no effect on my beliefs. There was no religious or spiritual impact.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? No
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? I encountered a definite being, or a voice clearly of mystical or unearthly origin Not only one. Many, many people were there. ‘Hear’ isn't really the right word, either. I could hear them, but not like normal hearing. I heard them ‘in my head’ is the best way I can describe it.
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? No
During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? No
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? God probably does not exist
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 probably does not exist
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? No
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are possibly meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? No
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? I was uncertain if an afterlife exists
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife probably exists Yes I felt like the cliff was a "point of no return" and the people were trying to push me back. I didn't make a choice to return. Something pushed or pulled me backward.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I moderately feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? Unknown
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Moderately fearful in living my earthly life
Were you fearful living your life after your experience? Moderately fearful in living my earthly life
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant after your experience? Are possibly 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? Moderately compassionate toward others
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? No changes in my life
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No
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 as accurately as other life events that occurred around the time of the experience
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? No
Have you ever shared this experience with others? No
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes I had heard stories and seen television shows about it, but I had done no real research or had any special interest in it.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No
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