As my attacker raised his weapon above my head I knew it was the end. I thought of calling out to God for help, but I was aware that because I had been questioning God's very existence, it didn't seem right to call out for help in a moment of fear.
At that moment, I lost all sense of being there in my body in that room with that person. I was traveling through a great black void, like outer space, at a tremendous speed. I had no sense of body, just the essence of my being hurling through this velvety void. In the very far distance, I could see a single speck of light, like a very bright star. There was no other light in this void. I was speeding towards that light through the deep blackness of this void. This blackness was enfolding me, comforting me, offering me complete safety as I hurled through it. I knew that the light I was speeding towards contained every good, beautiful and pure thing. I had nothing to fear, I was safe and cared for. The light, although it looked only like a star in the night sky, was beautiful and I knew that was where I belonged and longed to be.
Then suddenly, I was back in the room and the person was still standing there with the raised weapon. I looked up at him and reached my arm out to touch him. I could not see his face because he wore a nylon stocking over his head and it was very dark. He turned and rushed out of the room and out of the house. The police later found the weapon in the bushes by the front door. The man was never found or identified.
Date NDE Occurred: 12-23-74
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Criminal attack 'Life threatening event, but not clinical death'
Someone had broken into my house while I was sleeping. This person assaulted me, and had a weapon in hand and was about to use it on me. There was no way I could have survived assault with this weapon. In the moment before my experience, I knew I was about to die; more surely than I have ever known anything.
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 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? While I was speeding through the blackness. I don't know how long this actually lasted. Logically it seems like it would have been only a second or two.
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
There was no sense of time. The black space around me was infinite. There was no other destination, no other possible place to go except towards the one point of light.
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. Again, I can't compare the two. There was nothing to see except the point of light. There was no sound.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. There was no 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? No
Did you see any beings in your experience? I actually saw them
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No
The experience included: Void
The experience included: Darkness
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 A single point of light like a bright star in a deep black velvety sky.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm I didn't actually get to the light, but I was speeding towards it and I knew it was beautiful and perfect.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I was safe, I was loved, there was immense hope in the light, all goodness and all perfection was in the light. I was peaceful while also being blissfully alive.
Did you have a feeling of peace or pleasantness? Incredible peace or pleasantness
Did you have a feeling of joy? Happiness
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 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 'I was brought up in a conservative fundamentalist Christian environment and had determined that was not how I felt or believed. I was in a transitional state where I could not believe in Christianity as it had been presented to me, and wanted to explore my spirituality on my own terms.'
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain Since I was in a transitional state anyway, it is hard to know what my beliefs would have been if this had not happened. I feel that this experience was necessary for me so that I could explore other ways of thinking about my spirituality, without fear.
What is your religion now? Liberal 'I am very open minded about spirituality. I know that love, forgiveness and peace are more important than any given belief. I embrace the mystery of the spiritual experience.'
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Uncertain Since I was in a transitional state anyway, it is hard to know what my beliefs would have been if this had not happened. I feel that this experience was necessary for me so that I could explore other ways of thinking about my spirituality, without fear.
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 The special knowledge was just that that point of light contained all goodness and perfection.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Uncertain I was very young when this happened. I did not tell my family about my experience because I was afraid they would tell me it was God's punishment that I got attacked and that my feelings of peace were just Satan at work to pull me further away from God (yes, my family really thinks this way). So it is hard to say what my relationships with my family would have been if this had not happened.
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? Uncertain I had a very intense Ouija Board experience several years later in which the piece I was holding moved very quickly from letter to letter and we couldn't follow it, but wrote down several pages of letters. Then we figured out the individual words and a story emerged about me in a previous life with a historical figure and we were able to verify many facts about this figure (I was the daughter of a well-known painter). The person who was 'speaking' through the board was a man who was in love with me and was trying to reach out to me, but in a controlling and desperate way. I felt threatened and have not ever used the board since.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? I no longer had to fear death. However, for many years I had nightmares about being attacked and for many years I felt a sort of creeping fear at twilight because I was afraid of someone breaking in and attacking me. I was afraid of the physical attack, but not of death itself. I don't know if I would have had the courage to expand my spiritual beliefs beyond fundamentalist Christianity if this had not happened to me. I might have been too afraid that if I was wrong, I would go to hell. Now I know there is no hell.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I shared it within a few months after it occurred, and over subsequent years with a handful of people. People have seemed to believe me, and have seemed a bit amazed. I don't know if my story has influenced anyone or not.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Uncertain I don't really think I knew much about any of it. I was just beginning to think about the reality of heaven and hell and to try to figure out what I believed about God at this time in my life. Later I began reading about NDEs.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real My mystical experience was very intermingled with my physical experience. I had nightmares and was afraid of the dark. I was very cold and shivery. I felt much anger towards this man who had attacked me. I still wondered at times about life after death, but the certainty that it was all going to be okay grew over time and became a part of who I am.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real At times I wonder if my experience was a neural or chemical event that occurred in my brain, or if it truly was a glimpse of the afterlife. Truly, it doesn't matter much to me. If the brain generates chemicals that create a sense of peace and a vision of light before death, or if the light is truly real and my consciousness will continue in some form after death, either way it's fine with me. I know that it will all be okay and that there is nothing to fear.
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 feel this is a somewhat unique experience in that my body was not actually compromised when it happened. It was a BELIEF that I was going to die, not an actual physical event such as heart failure etc.
I just want to stress that my experience was as definite and real as any experience could be, and my sense of calm and peace and safety during that experience is one I can still vividly recall and relive.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? I don't think so. Good site.