There was light, but I could see no source of light. It was a light shade of gray and the atmosphere was clear, not cloudy. I noticed no borders or partitions. I did not feel weightless, nor did I feel the pull of gravity. I could see no other shapes or forms, yet I did not feel alone. I felt neither great joy nor great sadness. I did feel great peace. It was the kind of peace God talks about in the Bible or the Hindu and Buddhists refer to in reference to Nibbana. The only way to reach this state is to remove all thought from the brain. In this altered state of consciousness, I saw everything in a different light. All the brainwashing from school and television vanished. It was like I could sense some source of energy, there are no words to describe it. Trying to describe the feeling would be like trying to describe a sunrise over the Grand Canyon to someone who has been blind all of their life. There was also no sense of time nor space. When I came back to the real world, I was disappointed.
This was my second NDE, the first occuring 03-04-1978 at the age of 19, resulting in me going to college and pharmacy school. I always considered myself very fortunate to be able to help others while making a living. Over the years, my wife and I have taken in in the neighborhood of twenty stray dogs and three cats.
Date NDE Occurred: 08/07/2014
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Surgery-related. Life threatening event, but not clinical death.
Hyponatremia Na+ level 105
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? More consciousness and alertness than normal. I do not remember 14 hours prior to arriving at the hospital at 11:30 pm. I was in ICU for 72 hours until my sodium level got to 120. There were IV lines in both arms with up to eleven bags running simultaneously every six hours.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? There was no sense of time, but my level of consciousness seemed to remain consistent throughout the experience.
Were your thoughts speeded up? No
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning.
Time and space lost all meaning.
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. I was unconscious for at least twelve hours prior to my experience, probably longer.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I was unconcious for at least twelve hours prior to my experience, probably longer.
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? No
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? No
Did you see an unearthly light? No
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm. The place I was at was unearthly yes; mystical, possibly. I remember light gray with no defined source of light. There was no forms or beings, not even shadows present. I did sense a type of indescribable energy that put me at great peace and made look at everything in a new light, even after I came back. Most words with two syllables or more, I had a hard time recalling initially. It was about seven to ten days before I was able to start speaking in complete sentences again. I still have a hard time with word recall. And, my wife says I am a totally different person.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Peace
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Incredible peace or pleasantness
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. There are no words. Maybe, 'I was blind, and now I see!' But even that does not approach what I felt.
Did scenes from your past come back to you? No
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? Greatly important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Christian- Protestant Na
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? No
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? Christian- Protestant
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. I do not know that I had any preconceived ideas about what death would be like. Based on this experience, and what I have read about the experience of others, I think death will be like life, in that it will be different for everyone. I think it will make a great difference whether your heart or your brain stops functioning first. I know my heart was still beating.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes. I will just leave it at 'yes' and not go into detail.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? No
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? No
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? Yes I felt like I was connected to everything.
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? God definitely exists
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? Yes The energy I felt, the peace, the knowledge, it is proof enough for me of the existence of God.
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? Yes I have no fear of death now.
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Yes To help each other, to love each other, to waste as little as we can and preserve as much of our planet as we can. To treat people and animals like you want to be treated and to disregard people who try to use religeon, nationality, or patriotism to lead you towards anger, hatred, and war. Let God be the judge of who is right or wrong.
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? An afterlife definitely exists
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists. Yes The energy I felt, the peace, the knowledge, the comfort, I would have stayed given the option.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I greatly feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? I do not fear death
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Not fearful in living my earthly life
Were you fearful living your life after your experience? Not fearful in living my earthly life
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are meaningful and significant
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? Uncertain Uncertain
During your experience, did you gain information about life's difficulties, challenges and hardships? No
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Greatly compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Yes That is our purpose, to love each other and to help each other
Were you compassionate after your experience? Greatly compassionate toward others
What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? Large changes in my life. I feel more comfortable with death, it's like we became friends.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes My wife says I am not the same person. The first time I woke up into a relatively conscious state, I knew, everything would be different from now on, and it has been.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes I kept a diary that I started after going to a regular room. I would get emotional writing it then. It is hard for me to describe. Not because of the NDE but due to the 96 hours leading up to it and the difficulties since. When we left the hospital, my wife was driving and cut the volume down on the music. There was a music stick in with twelve hours of music on it. When I turned the volume up the song that was starting to play from the very first note was 'Knockin' On Heaven's Door' by Bob Dylan and The Band from 'Before The Flood.' The version of the song was also meaningful to me. I had tears pouring out of my eyes the rest of the way home and almost every time I hear it since. It is like God was still talking to me.
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. I kept a diary, but most of my experience seems to stand out most of the time. I have had memory issues since this ordeal. There are some outstanding events I can remember for the most part most of the time. There are other events that I can remember when something triggers their memory, but they fade back out sometimes after a few hours, sometimes after a day or two. I can usually remember what I did yesterday and most of what I did the day before. The third day out starts to get hazy, and usually the fourth day out there is almost nothing. And then there are the memories that just went away, which in an average week with my wife we encounter three to four times.
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? The feeling of peace, the sense of energy that kept me from feeling alone.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I shared it with my wife as soon as I was able to speak again, which was about seven days later. I think it scared her and she still acts like she feels uncomfortable discussing it. She felt uncomfortable about the surgery I had to start with, this happened on the third trip back to the hospital due to complications. I was unconscious and when I came to, I could not identify who she was or her relationship to me. At the time, I had known her for 29 years and we had been married for 21 years. So it was a vary scary deal for her, probably more so than me.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes March 4,1978, I was grazed on the head by 40 ft 4000 lb steel beam that bounced one time and cut two fingertips off my left hand. It took approximately sixty stitches to see the corner of my head up. My skull was like if you took a hammer and hit a windshield, you would have a big depression where the hammer actually hit, but then you would have five or six cracks radiating out from that central depression for anywhere from three to six inches.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real. I did not have enough brain functionality to dream. If you look at my bloodwork, my body was about to shut down. All of my electrolytes
were off, my osmolalit, first taken on the second blood draw was 2.15, normal is 3.9, this is what causes the flow of electrons that make your heart beat. When a person gets this close to death, your brain loses the ability to form new images, so no dreaming.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real. Because it affected the way I think and act now, 30 months later. Dreams do not have that kind of effect.
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? I would tell everyone that deep down in their heart, they know what is right and what is wrong. Let that feeling be the driving force in the way you live your life and the way you teach your children. Do not take anything at face value. If you see reports that might alter the way you think, before you trust that report, look at who put it out and who paid for it to be put out.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? It has been relatively thorough.