I was admitted to the hospital around September 1969. Remember, no NDEs had been published then and not much was really known about religions then.
Doctors from all over the world came to see if they could find out what was wrong with me. My neurologist had spread it out that I was a unique case. At first I wished he hadn't because it made me feel so stupid and helpless because I thought I couldn't do anything. I didn't want to die. At the end of the week a nurse told me, I had to take a bath. She brought me into the tub in the bathroom. She left the room while I washed my hair and body. Suddenly I saw what looked like a brain that was cut in half. I knew it was my head. I saw a spot in the center of the brain. As I went back to my bed, I thought repeatedly that since it was in the center of my brain I was going to die, but I wasn't afraid. When I got back in my bed, I asked myself, 'Why not?' Suddenly, I heard a man's voice, 'Because you trust me.' I looked around and saw no one. I knew that I had heard God's voice. Then I lay down and fell asleep.
About a week later, I thought I had fallen asleep. My eyes were open and it appeared like I was being sucked up in a black vacuum cleaner. I couldn't move or breathe. I was afraid. Then I was in a grey misty area; and there I could breathe and move. I felt somewhat relaxed, but I didn't recognize anything. Suddenly I felt a hand on my left shoulder. I turned around and saw my Grandmother. (She had died about a month or two before I went in the hospital.) I asked her where we were, and she pointed behind me. When I turned around, I saw a large white mansion. I walked towards it, continuously thinking I was going to get in trouble because it had to be a very rich, important person's house and I didn't even have permission to be there.
I continued walking closer and noticed the dark green grass that was mowed to the most perfect level. There were numerous flowers and bushes arranged in many different ways around it. That's when I saw a white staircase that went up to the second floor of a very white mansion. I stood there staring at it. I remember thinking it was so fantastic; it reminded me of Zeus' mansion with all of the white pillars around it. I told myself that Zeus was just pretend, but it seemed to me that a God would have such a beautiful place. The light came out of the right side, walking along a walkway that went to the stairway. When the bright light reached the stairway, it began descending down towards me. It stopped ten to twelve steps before me. It called out my name, in front of me it was sort of a TV showing my life. I was standing before It, and It said, 'Come Cindy, follow me.'
That was when I could speak again. I said 'No, because if I go up there I will have to stay. I would be a crying angel sitting on a cloud and playing a harp. That would ruin your reputation.' He turned around and laughed. He then asked me, 'Why, because most people just follow me.' I told Him of my grandmother's death, and that if I was pronounced dead, I knew that my father would have a heart attack and die. My mother would then go crazy and be put in an institution. My three brothers and sister would be put in different homes. I didn't want that for my family.
He laughed some more and said He understood, but He would bring me back two more times so I could know what I was giving up then.
The second time we were walking in a beautiful mountain with so many gorgeous flowers, plants and animals. He told me that I didn't have to be afraid of the animals because He had made them as well as me. So many of them were funny, and others just talked. When we had walked down the path, quite a bit we were walking by a farm. A woman walked out and gave us a loaf of twelve-grain bread that was fresh out of her oven. We thanked her and began eating the bread. He said that it was His favorite type of bread. We walked further and we began going a little lower again. We went inside a small cabin to talk with a woman who was sweeping her floor. We sat down and she brought each of us a glass of apple juice. She said her son was down by the creek fishing, and her husband and his friends were hunting. As we were walking down further I mentioned that I had not thought anyone would have a gun, let alone kill anything in heaven. He laughed and said Cindy's Heaven is made of whatever makes her soul happy and comfortable.
When we reached the bottom of the mountain, I could see a city in the distance. I could only tell you to look in the book of Revelation and you could see it there.
The third time I noticed I was in a beautiful cabin in the mountains, and it was mine. There was a fireplace that had a picture above it, a bearskin rug on the floor, a kettle of vegetable soup brewing above the flames, and tomato soup in a refrigerator. I had made some quilts that were over the beds and chairs, as well as some rugs I had made that were also on the floors and walls. He arrived and we ate. I played some on a flute that I had. He took me to the edge of the mountain and we looked at the view. He said that when I came to heaven I could go anywhere I wanted, including any ocean or universe. I told Him then that I would love it if we could go into a canoe and he could take me for a ride down. Suddenly, we were in the canoe and going down. I just kept looking at how beautiful it was. We then walked towards the mountain we had first come down on. We were walking along the wall of the New Jerusalem. I looked down at my right side. I was astounded because I could finally see His left hand holding my right.
At that time, He told me I could ask Him seven questions and He would have to answer them. I said really? He said that's one. I then said, 'You mean if I ask you something but don't mean it you will count it?' He said that's two. I then started thinking. I knew in the Bible it says ask and you will receive, but you must beware of how you word it. I asked Him if I would be alive through my high school graduation. He laughed and said, Cindy you know you will now, it just won't be as easy as you would want it. Then I asked him if I would be able to get married and have children. He said, 'Most definitely, but you will have many trials and tribulations down there.' I knew I had asked Him four questions, but they were all selfish and I knew that I should ask something that could help all people. I then asked Him one that all of us kids were asking, and we heard a lot of grownups asking.
'I know you love me and all life, but if you really love all of us continuously without end, then how can You send people to hell throughout eternity?' He said, 'Cindy I do love all life without end. Some people chose to go to hell, I have already forgiven them; but they must forgive themselves.'
Suddenly I heard angelic voices warning that it was late and I had to hurry back. I asked him if I would ever see Him again, And He said 'Always.'
NDERF: I emailed the contributor with several questions. Here are her responses:
I asked seven questions. One I left out was how could He forgive a murder/rapist? He said that there is good in all people. You just have to look really hard in some people, then you can forgive them and still love them. I asked if there is just one religion that will make it into heaven? He said all who believe and have faith, even those who don't outwardly think they do. It depends on their hearts.
The being as you called Him was God. I was very much awake. When I got back down to the hospital bed, I said Hi to the nurse who jumped back and had wide eyes at that time. She was quite startled and said she had been with me for forty-five minutes testing blood pressure (0/0), heartbeat was zero, no breathing. She was about to return to the desk and call the doctors to pronounce me dead. I laugh so much when I remember that particular time. She blamed it on a date she went on the night before; she drank a whole bottle of wine and was up later than usual on a work night.
Date NDE Occurred: 10/12/69
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes I had a Pinealoma 'Life threatening event, but not clinical death'
I was in the hospital for almost a month, and the doctors finally found a Pinealoma in the middle of my brain. All said I should have died at birth three or four years old.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Mixed
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes
I clearly left my body and existed outside it
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 When I had asked the second question.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? When I had asked the second question.
Were your thoughts speeded up? Incredibly fast
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? Yes, and the facts have been checked out
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes Did explain.
The experience included: Presence of deceased persons
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes Explained above.
The experience included: Light
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? A light clearly of mystical or other-worldly origin
Did you see an unearthly light? Yes Extremely bright white.
The experience included: A landscape or city
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm did above
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Shame, love, humor, curiosity, awe.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Incredible peace or pleasantness
Did you have a feeling of joy? incredible joy
Did you feel a sense of harmony or unity with the universe? I felt united or one with the world
The experience included: Special Knowledge
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe
Did scenes from your past come back to you? My past flashed before me, out of my control Did above, very short.
Did scenes from the future come to you? Scenes from the world's future Did above.
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 was your religion prior to your experience? Conservative/fundamentalist Catholic
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? No Not really.
What is your religion now? Liberal 'non-denomination, but very deep faith'
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? No Not really.
The experience included: Presence of unearthly beings
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
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I actually saw them
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? No
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? No
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes At first the people I told called me a liar, or a dreamer. I was afraid to tell them again for a long time. I did tell others.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Uncertain
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? Yes, explained above.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes The first two times my sister called me a liar and mother called me a dreamer non-family members believed me and rejoiced with me.
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 I can't deny it.
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? Yes My heavenly Daddy gives me many opportunities, but the result is always up to me.
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? Sometimes I think I'm ready to go to my eternal homes, but then I change my mind again.