Experience Description

I had been taken to an ambulance after struggling to breathe for quite a while. It was getting impossible to breathe and I knew I was dying. As I stopped breathing, I expected everything to go black. But suddenly, I was in a place of incredible light. This was not the sort of light we are used to on earth. There were wonderful patterns and golden lights enveloped me. At the same time, I was enveloped in the most incredible knowledge of unconditional and benevolent love.

Then everything did go black until I woke up in hospital after being on a ventilator for two days.

Background Information:

Gender: Female

Date NDE Occurred: February 2003

NDE Elements:

At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? No Illness Kidney failure Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function)

How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful

Did you feel separated from your body? Yes 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 As above.

At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? In real time, I don't know - but just after I had stopped breathing I think.

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 I seemed aware that my experience was out of time and place.

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 didn't have normal vision - being clinically dead, I was aware that what I was 'seeing' was not using my normal vision.

Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I was not aware of any particular sound.

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? Uncertain I seemed to be enclosed in this scintillating light - uncertain whether or not it could be described as tunnel like.

Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them

Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? Uncertain The love that was being showered on me seemed to come from an intelligence or being - nothing or no one I could know or name. Divine?

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 As previously described, it was an intense, golden patterned or scintillating light.

Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm The light and presence could be described as another level or dimension.

The experience included: Strong emotional tone

What emotions did you feel during the experience? Incredible awe and gratitude that I could be loved so universally and unconditionally - that such benevolence was possible. Makes me think of the George Herbert poem 'Love bade me enter...'

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

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 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? Moderate 'None, but practice meditation, spiritual beliefs'

Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes I take my meditation and practice more seriously.

What is your religion now? Moderate As above

Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I take my meditation and practice more seriously.

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? Uncertain I came to know that this love was given universally and all the time to us. And that it was so all encompassing as to be probably beyond our ability to comprehend or believe it.

Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I try to be, and hope I am, more loving myself as a human being. I have confidence that 'death is not the end'.

After the NDE:

Was the experience difficult to express in words? Uncertain The nature of the feelings evoked are difficult to express.

Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Uncertain Most times, if you could call it a special gift, I have a different understanding of what happens when our body dies.

Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? I understood that there was a 'universal intelligence' or God or something (!) That was, one could say, Love itself.

Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I shared it with a few people close to me a few days after I was out of intensive care and able to do so. I have had differing reactions - some people think it was brain activity, some have been very comforted or encouraged by my experience.

Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes I had read some NDEs previously, but was only aware that I had not come across one at that time that was very similar to mine.

What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real I have never had any reason to doubt that it was real - I don't believe my brain is able to conjure such a feeling.

What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real My view of the experience has never changed. It was real.

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 have read of some religious and some psychedelic experiences which seemed very close to my experience.

Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? I am slightly surprised that you don't ask for validation of 'clinical death' by the hospital involved.