I was twenty-three years young, vacationing with girlfriends in Florida. Beautiful white sand on a beach that stretched as far as the eye could see. My friends were sunning themselves while I splashed in the sea - it was soothing, wonderful! I was caught in an undertow and tried to swim against it. I'm not an experienced swimmer. Too far out to see the beach, I panicked and tried to swim harder and became very fatigued. There wasn't a soul out there that I could see. I had thoughts of dying all alone - what a shame since I hadn't really lived yet. I was unsure of time and direction.
Suddenly I could no longer feel my body, which was weird, since I had been shivering with fear and cold just moments before. I was only aware of an exquisite sense of warmth and peace and the brightest, most golden-white glow enveloped me. Then it felt as if I travelled through a sort of tunnel, and I viewed what looked like brief film clips of my life up to my present age. I could even see expressions on the faces of family members. Next, a man sailing a small boat asked me, 'What seems to be the problem?' And I replied that I was not able to swim to shore. I do not remember getting in his boat, nor do I recall sailing to shore.
My memory is only that of waking up on the beach surrounded by the lifeguard and onlookers. I recall being in an ambulance and the paramedic slapping my face, encouraging me to stay awake. I felt bereft! All I wanted was to find that beautiful warm and serene place again and never have to leave it. Some months later, I became interested in the metaphysical. I read about the mystery schools and other religions and philosophies. I was curious about things I never thought to question before.
Date NDE Occurred: 1974
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes near drowning Life threatening event, but not clinical death
Near drowning - caught in an undertow.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Positive
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Yes I had no physical form - instead I was all consciousness, experiencing something unusual. Did not feel like a dream state either. Most perplexing!
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? Aware of the experience, but couldn't feel physical sensations.
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
Felt like I had been gone for hours, but my friends didn't say they missed me!
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. All was strangely quiet.
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes It was a sense of travelling or flying or moving through a darkened tunnel.
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Uncertain A young man appeared in a small sailboat - had no idea where he came from.
The experience included: Light
Did you see an unearthly light? Yes So incredibly golden-white - as if I travelled to the sun without the heat.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? No
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Serenity, comfort, joy, acceptance, peace, love.
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? No
The experience included: Life review
Did scenes from your past come back to you? My past flashed before me, out of my control A very fast succession of film clips from my life - family members I took for granted who are important to me now.
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? No
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 I wanted to get into the boat that appeared seemingly out of nowhere.
God, Spiritual and Religion:
What is your religion now? Liberal
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes No longer feared death; open to different religions and cultures; more universal love.
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes No basis of comparison.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Yes Automatic writing, guidance, can sometimes read other people's thoughts, healing.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? All the above listed could be described as the best - there was no 'worst part.'
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes They think of it as an interesting story. I don't know if this story has influenced anyone.
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? Wish I could experience it again!