I was at the dentist office for him to pull the first two jaw teeth on both sides of my mouth. Some kind of inhalant was used to put me under. The dentist came into the room and was joking about the dental assistant's sex life. I thought that was very inappropriate. I was in the semi-conscious state when he put a clamp in my mouth to keep it open. As he talked to his assistant, I could feel myself sinking deeper and deeper into sedation. I could feel him trying to pull the first tooth as he twisted and pulled on the tooth. When the first tooth snapped, I sank deeper and deeper into unconsciousness.
I sensed a buzzing sensation in my ears. My jaws tightened up and kept wrenching as though trying to close. As my jaw tried to shut, I could feel my jaws popping with their contractions. The sequence of events is still a little off, but my consciousness sank deeper and deeper into my body.
I thought my consciousness was in my chest because I saw a light in the distance, which I thought was my eyes. I sensed a rush as I went to the light. I found myself standing in front of a misty gray wall that was in front of me in all directions. Instinctively, I moved into the veil and I could feel it as it passed off the back of my ears and head. When I got there, an entity took me by the hand and stated over and over, ‘It's all over, don't worry, you're home!’
I looked over my shoulder and it was as though I was on the moon or somewhere else other than earth. I saw the blue-white sphere in the distance. I turned and looked back ahead of me and there was a soft yellow light in the distance. The floor looked like tile because of the light reflected from it. There was a man standing over to my right but he never said anything or moved during the experience. A feeling of love and peace came over me. In the background, I kept hearing the entity reassuring me that all was o.k. and that I was home.
At one point, it was as though a veil was lifted from my mind and suddenly I knew about everything. I thought, ‘I just forgot while I was there.’ I looked back again and there was a giant circle and in that circle were smaller circles. In the smaller circles were the faces of all the people in my life. Looking at these people involved a rush of experiences that I had with each of them. I also noted that the large circle wasn't but about a third full of the smaller ones.
I looked back toward the light and thought about my children who were ages 3 and 4 at the time. Then the thought came over me that my children would be o.k. and would take care of themselves and that they would be there soon. ‘Soon’ in the sense of a different kind of time over there. Still in the background, the entity was continuing to repeat to me that it was o.k. and I was home. I turned and started walking toward the light in total peace with my decision to cross over and go home.
Then, I felt myself sucked backward and back through the veil. I don't recall the sequence here but at some point, I was floating in the corner on the ceiling of the back room of the dentist’s office. I saw my dentist, his assistant and two other couples having a drink. A green hue dimly lit the room. The six people were sitting in three love seats. There was a dark coffee table in the centers with ashtrays on the table. I saw two lamps at each end of the main love seat.
A confusing part of the experience, that scared and confused me, was a visit that I had with the entity. We were going into a town that had a dark red tint to everything. We walked down a road and went into a building. Again, I was scared and never figured out why I was there. The next thing I knew, I awoke in a room by myself and the assistant didn't come to check on me for almost half an hour.
Up to that time, I had no knowledge of NDEs or any understanding of what just happened to me. I had already stepped away from religion three years before the NDE, so it really played no role in the experience. It wasn't until I saw a movie in 1983 titled ‘Resurrection’ that I realized what I had was an NDE. Since then, I volunteer with hospice and spend time talking to people who are dying. I try to talk to all my clients to make sure they know this life is not the end. I think it keeps me close to death and sorrow.
I've been a researcher for many years and about 10 years ago, I posted an expanded version of the NDE on a website. If you are interested, here it is:
NDE in Dentist Chair.
In May of 1978, I went to my family dentist to have a couple teeth extracted. What started out as a simple procedure, ended as a life changing experience.
A few years earlier, I quit a good factory job to go to Bible college with plans to become a minister. The plans ended early and I found myself without money or a job. My wife was pregnant with our first child and we were without health insurance. I tried to get my old job back but the factory was laying off and there were no other jobs to be found. With limited options, I decided to join the army. After two (2) years in the army at the age of 23 and a father of 2 beautiful children, I was honorably discharged.
By May of 1978, I was in my second job since being discharged and my life was in turmoil. My wife and I were separated and I was filled with guilt over leaving my children. At this point in my life, I had lost all faith in God and had no real religious beliefs.
Soon after starting that job, I went to a dentist to have a couple teeth pulled. The dentist's office was in a small house that had been converted into an office. From what I could see, the house only had a waiting room and a couple of patient rooms.
I was a little nervous when I arrived at the office. I never had any teeth pulled and I had never been anesthetized with laughing gas. The dental assistant took me into a room and she told me to sit in this old green dental chair. The chair looked like it was 50 years old. She loosened my clothes and wrapped a cloth around my face as she tried to assure me that everything was going to be ok. She then declined the chair and placed a mask over my nose. She told me to take in deep breaths as she turned on the gas. As I breathed in, I could feel my body start to go numb and my eyes became very heavy. I tried to keep my eyes open and stay awake as long as possible. Finally, my eyes just couldn't stay open any longer and they slowly closed as I started to sink into heavy sedation.
When the dentist came into the room, I was still aware of what was going on around me. Even though I could hear him talking to his assistant, I couldn't open my eyes and I couldn't feel anything he was doing. He started joking with his assistant about her boyfriend and their sex life, which I thought that was inappropriate. I wondered what they would think if they knew I could hear everything they were saying.
I felt the dentist open my mouth wide and put some kind of clamp inside to keep it open. I could tell he was giving me a couple of shots but it didn't hurt. He put some cotton or gauze in my mouth and I assumed it to absorb the blood after pulling my teeth. Then I felt him stick an instrument in my mouth and begin prying and pulling on the first tooth. I was aware of everything he was doing but it didn't hurt at all, thank God! I felt my head pulled up and down as he pried and twisted on the first tooth. Suddenly I heard a loud snap and the first tooth was out.
During the time he was working on the first tooth, I continued to sink deeper and deeper within myself. I don't remember the extraction of the second tooth and I vaguely remember the sequence of events after that.
I felt my jaw muscles begin to contract and I could hear a buzzing sound that vacillated with each contraction. I remember wondering why my jaws were contracting and what was causing the noise. I continued to drift, as I sank deeper and deeper. I thought my consciousness must have been way down in my chest because I could see a light far away and I thought I was looking at the light coming into my eyes. I felt myself rush toward the light and suddenly I found myself in another room of the house. I was in the corner of a room, looking down at the dentist, his assistant and two other couples as they sat there drinking and laughing. They didn't seem to notice me as I watched them. The room was a light beige or light green with two couches, a chair and two lamps. I could not understand why they were drinking and socializing when they had patients in the office.
The next thing I knew, I found myself standing in front of this great, misty gray wall. I looked all around and the wall was the only thing I could see. On instinct I guess, I stepped into and through the wall. It felt like a cool, misty like veil as it slid past my face from the tip of my nose to the back of my ears. Once the veil slid off the back of my ears, I was on the other side.
I was standing in the shadows and I could see a light in the distance. The floor looked like it was made of a polished tile because I could see a soft reflection of the light. I also saw people walking around in the shadows. One man in particular was off to my right and just seemed to be waiting there with no apparent intent to go toward the light. He was facing the wall and was watching me. It seemed like he was waiting for someone else to come through. I couldn't forget him because he wore a hat that was popular back in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Just like the one my grandfather wore when he died in 1963. I sensed others milling around but everyone was in the shadows and I could not make out any other details.
Someone took my left hand and said, 'it's all over, you're home, don't worry about anything, it's all over, you're home.' I didn't recognize the person but I've always thought it was a woman. She just kept repeating that I was home and not to worry about anything.
A feeling of extreme peace and joy came over me as I began to realize I was home again. I was where I belonged and I was not interested in returning. Then my mind cleared and finally I understood everything I had ever wondered about. All the mysteries of the world were right there in my mind. Not that I asked about anything or that she told me anything, I just remembered! I just thought, 'oh well, I just forgot everything while I was there.'
I turned and looked behind me and saw a large circle and in that circle, were smaller circles. However, the smaller circles did not fill all the space inside the larger circle. I later decided that was an indication there would be more people in my life before I leave this earth. In the smaller circles were all the faces of all the people that had been in my life. I looked at each face in each circle and sensed a rush of emotions and experiences with each.
My friend kept telling me over and over not to worry about anything and that I was home. I looked around again and it was as though I was standing on the moon looking back down at the earth. I could see scattered white clouds covering the deep blue waters of earth. It was very beautiful and I felt very peaceful and happy.
However, around this time I realized I had wasted my time while I was here. I don't remember why I felt that way but it was a strong feeling. Even so, I was still glad to be home!
I have always been a very protective person when it comes to the ones I love, especially my children. But at this time, I wasn't concerned about anyone. I knew they were ok and they would all be with me soon. But soon didn't seem to be a time, just that I knew they were coming after their journey. Wherever I was, I was home and where I belonged.
I turned and started walking with my friend toward the light and toward my home. However, after only a few steps toward the light, I felt myself being sucked backwards, out of the hand of my friend and back through the wall. The next thing I knew, I woke up in the dentist chair, alone and confused. The dentist never said anything about what happened that day and I never asked. I knew something profound happened that day, but at that time I didn't know how profound!
Fifteen months after the experience, my wife and I divorced. We have always maintained a good relationship and worked together for the kids' sake.
Since the experience, I've learned to appreciate every aspect of life and not to fear death. I have to admit I fear the process and the pain associated with death, but not death itself. Nothing from my prior religious beliefs could explain to me what I went through. A large portion of my life since that time has been spent searching. Searching for my purpose and to make sure I don't waste the rest of my life. I've always encouraged my kids have an open mind about God and life and to make sure that they don't let anyone tell them what to think.
The things that were important to me before the experience were not so significant anymore. I no longer cared about physical possessions or the need to pretend to be something that I wasn't. Now I think more of who I am and how I could be helping other people.
For years, I didn't share this experience with anyone. I was afraid of what people would think. Now I tell anyone who will listen! It wasn't until five years after the experience that I realized I had a near death experience. I had no prior knowledge about near death experiences, but after that, I started searching and reading. One evening in 1983, I watched a movie that was based on a true story, titled 'Resurrection.'
The movie was about a woman who died and came back to life to share what she experienced. She was riding with her husband on a winding road along the coast of California when the car went out of control and over a cliff. Her husband was killed and she was critically injured. She was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead on the operating table for about 7 minutes. Then she suddenly started breathing again and she was revived. The movie portrayed her experience during that 7 minutes in great detail. As I sat and watched her go through the tunnel and to the other side, it was like reliving my own experience 5 years earlier. I was really excited! It was as though someone made a movie of what I saw and experienced.
Today, I work in a good job, earning a fair wage and I do help people in my job. But it's not the kind of help that I really want to provide. For a couple of years, I volunteered with hospice. I talked to patients, family members or anyone else who would listen to what I experienced. I knew where the patients are going and I wanted to help ease their fears as well as those of the families.
My future will continue to consist of searching. I am still an average person with the normal problems in everyday life and I'm not perfect by any means. However, I've been given one of the greatest gifts of life! To know there is life after this earth and nothing that happens here is ever as significant as we think. I know I have to take advantage of this extended opportunity to learn, grow, share and serve.
Date NDE Occurred: May of 1979
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Uncertain Other: The dentist did not say anything to me about any problems. But, when I awoke, I was in a room alone.
The dentist did not say anything to me about any problems. But, when I awoke, I was in a room alone. The dentist did not say anything to me and I didn't ask. Later in life, I had other brushes with death without NDEs but found that I have a condition called Malignant Hyperthermia (MH). MH is a reaction to certain anesthetics and inhalants and causes the body to become rigid including jaw muscles, body temperature to rise while typically results in death. My reaction at the time of the NDE was classic for MH.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Both pleasant AND distressing
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? No
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 I just knew more while I was there and I knew the answer to every question I'd ever asked. It was as though my eyes were wide open for the first time.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? While on the other side.
Were your thoughts speeded up? Faster than usual
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
Time as we know it seemed to change over there. Their concept of time appeared to be that it was happening faster than here. Again, when I thought of my children and determined they would be ok and would be there soon, meant something longer to me.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? More vivid than usual
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. It just changed my outlook totally. I don't look at religion the same way anymore.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. I know I was hearing the dentist and his assistant, at least at first. The remaining experience included communication without anything being said.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
The experience included: Tunnel
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 As I said before, I was communicating with one while at least one other wearing a 50’s style of hat and standing off to the side. I actually saw them.
The experience included: Darkness
The experience included: Unearthly light
Did you see, or feel surrounded by, a brilliant light? No
Did you see an unearthly light? Yes It wasn't a light but it wasn't a body either. It just was.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm Going through the veil and then talking to someone, while another person was off to the side.
The experience included: Hellish imagery
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Happiness, peace and love.
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 or purpose
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe As I said before, it was as though a veil was lifted from my mind and everything I'd ever wondered about was right there. I just thought I forgot about them while I was there.
The experience included: Life review
Did scenes from your past come back to you? I remembered many past events I remembered many past events.
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
The experience included: Boundary
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Yes The gray misty veil.
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? Not important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Do not know I had been very religious as a Christian (church of Christ) until 3 years earlier (1976).
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes What happened to me, I was totally unprepared for the finite-ness on earth but the infinite-ness in the other place. I have a higher respect of all living things.
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? Do not know Not a Christian or in any organized religion. After the experience, I could not find any belief system that incorporated NDEs.
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was entirely not consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience What happened to me, I was totally unprepared for the finiteness on earth but the infiniteness in the other place.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes Used to be, I would feel fearful to tell anyone for fear they would laugh. Now I don't care what others think.
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 Again, we communicated but not like we do here. Also, the entity was saying things to me the entire time I was on the other side. I actually saw them.
Did you see deceased or religious spirits? I actually saw them
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 And that it does exists in all of us.
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? I was uncertain if God exists
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? Yes It led me to believe that we are all part of a supreme being or God, and when we return to join him again, the body sis left here to decay.
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 While I was there but when I returned to my body, I just forgot again.
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Unknown
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? Yes Yes, while I was there but when I returned to my body, I just forgot again..
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? I was uncertain if an afterlife exists
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists No
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I moderately feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? I do not fear death
Were you fearful living your life prior to your experience? Unknown
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? Unknown
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? No
During your experience, did you gain information about life's difficulties, challenges and hardships? No
Were you compassionate prior to your experience? Slightly compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Yes Overwhelming love and peace.
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 Large changes in my life
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I've moved around in my life so each friendship or relationship changed or ended as I moved.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes At first I had no idea what just happened. I just knew it was significant. I had no knowledge of NDEs or what some of the experience meant.
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 remember the experience more accurately than other life events that occurred around the time of the experience
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 peacefulness feeling of love and acceptance. Most of all that I was home.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes 3 years. Reactions were very suspect. My daughter is very open-minded about non-religious events and my experience has led to her having a very open mind.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was probably real I just knew something significant happened to me but I had no frame of reference at the time.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real It was a blessing. Just to see where I'll be going at that time.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No I wish it would.