I was 19 at the time of my 'near death' experience, which resulted from a fainting episode from receiving multiple injections of medication. I was a seaman in the US Navy at the time of the experience. I had fallen off a large pier fender used to keep ships from slamming into the side of the pier. Because I had fallen into the dirty harbor water, I was required to get multiple booster shots to prevent any possible infections or diseases from occurring. In the medical bay after receiving my shots, I felt very lightheaded and knew that I was going to pass out from a self-induced panic attack. I had previously fainted once before in my life after a panic attack caused by smoking too much weed, so I knew exactly what the experience of fainting felt like. I wasn't afraid to faint, in fact I kind of looked forward to it because I knew that I would wake up in a minute or two more relaxed than my present state, so my body just kind of wanted to get it over with. I remember explicitly telling the corpsman, who was a friend of mine, that I was going to faint and that he shouldn't freak out if I pass out on him. Right after I told him that, it was lights out. I remember waking up in an absolutely beautiful green field of grass. When I awoke, I was laying on my back looking up into the sky. The experience of 'waking up' in this field of grass seemed entirely normal and natural, as if I had always been there and simply woke up from a nap. The sky was a picture perfect day, clear and blue with a radiant sun. As I raised my head up from the ground to look around, I saw my deceased dog from my childhood bounding towards me. I remember exclaiming her name at the top of my lungs as I saw her bounding towards me. It was overwhelmingly wonderful. I felt completely at peace and totally happy. I was so excited to see her again, and I did not question the experience at the time. It was as if she had never died and she had always been waiting for me to wake up from my nap in the grass. The thought 'why is my dead dog here?' never occurred to me. The thought 'where am I and why am I laying in this field of grass?' never occurred to me. Everything was simply as it was supposed to be. BAM! I awoke to screaming chaos and a wicked burning sensation in my nose. The corpsman was leaning over me screaming my name at the top of his lungs telling me to wake up and had placed smelling salts under my nose. His face was just a few inches from mine. The experience of waking up was earth shattering. Imagine that you are sitting at your computer, reading this article, the next moment you are in a hospital emergency room, with no idea how you got there, and some guy is screaming in your face. I was terrified out of my mind, and I remember lunging at the corpsman exclaiming, 'God help me!' For I thought I had died. Mind you, I didn't think I had 'died' in this world; rather, I was alive in the other world and awaking here again was like I was waking to hell. It took me a minute to get my bearings again and calm down. Then it all came back to me; that I had passed out after getting those shots. But while I was in that place with my dog, I was totally disconnected from this reality and did not remember anything about how I got there. It was as if I had always been there. The experience was very brief, but VERY real. An entire reality was just as real as our world is now. There was not a single aspect of that experience which did not feel real. Later I came to find out that such 'near death' experiences are common in fighter pilots who experience high-G induced fainting, so I thought I would share my own experience with fainting here. It is interesting to note that I have only had one other supernatural experience in my life, and that too involved my deceased dog. The first experience I had was back when I was around 13 or so. My dog was terminally sick with cancer and needed to be put down. I happened to pick up the phone when the vet clinic called my parents with the bad news, so I listened in to the conversation. After listening for a bit, I spoke up and told them I had heard the conversation and that I agreed the best course of action was to euthanize her. That has probably been the saddest experience of my life so far. I was crushed, and I remember locking myself in my room and crying about it for hours. I didn't want to go to the clinic to see her pass because I knew I wouldn't be able to deal with it without breaking down. I was so unbelievably sad it is hard to put into words. Eventually I passed out asleep from being so emotionally drained. As I slept, I had the most lucid dream experience I've ever had. In the dream, I saw my dog run up to me as I stood in the driveway of my house. She stopped just short of me, and then she turned her head to look behind her at gardens behind our house where she loved to play and explore. She wasn't supposed to play there, but she did anyways. I remember telling her that it was OK for her to go there now, and that she should go and have fun. With that, she ran off bounding toward the gardens. At this point, I awoke. I remember I felt really bad because I had not spent as much time with her as I should have. I felt like now that she was dead, I had taken her affection for granted while she was alive. But the vision relieved me of some of that guilt, since it made me feel like she still loved me anyways and that she understood why I had acted the way I did towards her. It was if she came back to tell me she was happy now, and that I shouldn't feel sad now that she had gone. She just wanted to say goodbye and make sure that I would be OK without her.
Date NDE Occurred: 1995
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? No. healthy Other healthy
How do you consider the content of your experience? Entirely pleasant
Did you feel separated from your body? No
How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal everyday consciousness and alertness? Normal consciousness and alertness
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? The entire experience was lucid and real.
Were your thoughts speeded up? Incredibly fast
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? No
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. Same
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Same
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? Yes I saw my dead dog.
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? No
The experience included: A landscape or city
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? Some unfamiliar and strange place A field of green grass, sunshine, and rolling hills that was as real as any here on Earth.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Very happy, very peaceful, very content. No fear or anxiety was present during the period where I was unconscious.
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
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? No
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? 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? Slightly important to me
What was your religion prior to your experience? Other or several faiths Raised as a Lutheran, but wasn't particularly dedicated to the religion. I was and am more of a spiritual person that doesn't believe in a God as described by the Bible.
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? No
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Moderately important to me
What is your religion now? Unaffiliated- Agnostic
Did your experience include features consistent with your earthly beliefs? Content that was entirely consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your experience I suppose the experience was consistent with my belief structure at the time.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Uncertain The experience seems to have reinforced my beliefs in consciousness existing as a fundamental entity of the universe, rather than as a product of brain activity. Whereby the brain acts as a receiver and processor of consciousness, not a creator of consciousness.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? No
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? No
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? No
Do you believe in the existence of God after your experience? I am uncertain if God exists
Concerning our Earthly lives other than Religion:
During your experience, did you gain special knowledge or information about your purpose? No
Did you believe that our earthly lives are meaningful and significant prior to your experience? Are probably meaningful and significant
During your experience, did you gain information about the meaning of life? No
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 probably exists Yes Yes, I saw my dead dog.
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I greatly feared death
Do you fear death after your experience? I moderately 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 after your experience? Are probably 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? Moderately compassionate toward others
During your experience, did you gain information about love? No
Were you compassionate after your experience? Moderately compassionate toward others
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? No
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? No
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
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? No
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes It's been a long time and I never really told anyone about it until recently. I wasn't really concerned with how people would react; I just didn't think it was particularly significant given that I didn't really 'die'.
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 definitely real
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? Yes See narrative above. The experience with my deceased dog during a dream.
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? I remember the experience more accurately than other life events that occurred around the time of the experience.
© 2014 NDERF, Jody Long & Jeffrey Long, MD. All Rights Reserved.