I was very unhappy in my family and social life, a gay teenager brought up in a very restrictive and rigidly conservative family where most of my needs for safety and care were not being met. I had gone away to college the previous year which meant leaving the only support system I had known and relying on myself, although I had very few self-care skills. I felt utterly exposed, in danger, and disconnected from myself. I was devoid of any hope of living a fulfilling life. I decided to end the pain of that by taking two bottles of sleeping pills, which I did in the woods above our house that summer on a day when no one was to be home.
A few hours later, after apparently stumbling around the woods in a drug psychosis and at some point vomiting up much of the dissolved pills, I went back into the house, thinking it hadn't worked, and fell asleep on my bed until my sister came home from work and found me that evening. I awoke briefly when the paramedics came for me, one of whom I knew from my summer job, and later woke up in the hospital psychiatric ward.
Sometime during the unconscious part of that ordeal, I felt myself, just my consciousness, flying in a straight direction at an incredible speed, but I didn't smack into anything. It was through a definite tunnel, but there were no apparent physical walls to the tunnel, yet it contained my path toward the One. This seemed to go on for an enormous but immeasurable amount of time and in terms of experiencing it as travel through 'physical' space; I must have gone for an indescribable distance. The velocity was beyond anything possible in the physical realm.
Toward 'arrival', I saw I was approaching a formidably bright light Source and the tremendous speed gradually and without rush slowed to a stop. There before me was a human-shaped Figure from which the Light was emanating. The Light had a tangible quality to it, like some exquisite and viscous liquid Energy - it was radiating and pulsating continuously outward and I simply was bathed in its delicious, nourishment. The Being of Light looked like an outline shape of a fit, adult human form, neither male nor female, although its energy felt like a warmth and strength that I associate with male energy in this life; but I recognize that it can exist in women too.
Being in Its Presence felt so good; like peace, and like calm, and like home, and like belonging, and like safety and wellness. I could have stayed there forever and my contact with the Being of Light was somehow outside of time, although there was communication that I barely recall now: somehow, with Words that had no Sound, I understood that it wasn't time for me to be there, not yet. There was no sense of rushing my departure - it wasn't within time as I understand that here - but at some point I reverse-flew back through the tunnel with no walls and I guess landed back inside my physical body, where I awoke in the hospital.
I was still depressed with my life's circumstances but had an irrevocable sense of connection to the Divine Light Being that gave me a calm stability. I still wanted to die for a long time, and sometimes still do, as is associated with challenging life circumstances. Although I am rarely consciously aware of it, I still continuously yearn to be back in the Presence of the Light Being and its Radiance. I feel ashamed for not loving this physical plane more; I do find pleasures here, but they are like nothing, like cellophane wrappers to be discarded in contrast to the humbling Majesty of the Light Being. I wish I were more contented to be here, it makes me have a hard time relating to most people, frankly.
I'm not sure how, but I know that that experience has contributed to my work as a teacher and healer, the foundation of which was already in place for years before my NDE. I have always had a talent and leaning toward helping to support and empower people on their paths, but I now consider it a way of being that feels like home. Surface, day to day stuff, is very flat and mundane for me almost always, and I crave to rejoin the Light.
Date NDE Occurred: 'July 26, 1977'
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Suicide attempt deliberate sleeping pill overdose 'Life threatening event, but not clinical death'
I took two bottles of sleeping pills trying to kill myself (severe depression).
How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful
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 As above.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? The whole time from flying through the tunnel to the Presence of the Light Being and it waned when I was leaving again flying away from the Light Being.
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
Unrushed and immeasurable sense of time.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Higher clarity and potency of vision.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Strangely, there wasn't much sound, it was more like inner-hearing without sound, but somehow I knew that I was hearing the delicious silence with precise and powerful clarity.
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 you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Yes See main narrative.
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 See main narrative.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm
the tunnel was certainly distinctive, and the arrival place before the Being of Light was beautiful because of the Being of Light, Who was all I noticed... there was nothing else there and there didn't need to be.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Joy, peace, happiness, confusion, stress, fear.
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 Not in the specific sense of events, just in a wholeness and settled clarity about the feel of what had happened in my life, where I was, and my relationship to the Light Being somehow underlying everything else on the surface. I did not go through a series of life events; just the feeling or contact with the entirety of my life and it's unfolding. That one is hard to describe.
Did scenes from the future come to you? Scenes from the world's future
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? Liberal
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes Pagan, earth/nature-centered, focused on creativity and raising/moving power and energy. I still get lots of great stuff from major world religions such as Christianity (which I was raised in) Buddhism or Hinduism, but energy and Light are my 'religion'.
What is your religion now? Liberal
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes Pagan, earth/nature-centered, focused on creativity and raising/moving power and energy. I still get lots of great stuff from major world religions such as Christianity (which I was raised in) Buddhism or Hinduism, but energy and Light are my 'religion'.
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? Yes Both Universal Order and purpose, got knowledge that it wasn't my time yet and I was going back. It wasn't a choice though, or I would have stayed there.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I gravitate toward people who are actively spiritual and about substantial connection and meaning. I have a hard time with chitchat and interactions that I read as inauthentic or meaningless. I prefer the company of animals, people with profound mental retardation, natural environments, and only people of normative mental development who can be and are 'real' with me.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No
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? Being in the presence of the Light Being. And being separated from It.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes A few days, briefly to my Mom. Many years till I really came to grips with it within myself, it's meaning for me, and only occasionally really connecting with others on this.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No I heard and read about them many years later, including common elements such as the tunnel and the Light, etc. and was shocked.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real The timelessness, meaning, and the clarity led me to an absolute conclusion that my NDE was and is more real than simple physical day to day existence in this body.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real Since the memory has faded over the roughly thirty-two years since I went there, the meaning and the feelings it evokes when I do recall what I am able to re-embody me to its reality. For instance, today a big experience with a member of my biological family evoked unexpectedly the memory and hunger to reunite with the Light Being, and I cried hot deep tears several times today, including once while answering these questions.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? Uncertain Only in very minor, remnant forms, such as breath-work practices, exercise/embodiment, at times sexual connection and activity, being in nature, etc. but nothing achieves even a fraction of one percent of the experience I had.
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? Thanks for your interest in this and for asking about what I experienced and it's meaning to me. I need connection around it. I often feel despair in the absence of the Light, and I want to explore new ways to hold in my consciousness a current experience of connectedness with the Light, here and now, before I go back to it at the end of this incarnation, which is where hope lives for me.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? As a certified Learning Specialist, I really liked that you asked both open ended 'tell us about your experience' questions and also point by point clarifying questions. Thanks for allowing me this opportunity for expression and connection.
I wish you well with your learning.