I was sixteen years old. There were many of us staying the weekend at the summer home of a friend. It was a large estate with expansive grounds including a point that jutted out into the lake. This point held sheer drop-offs into the lake, approximately sixty feet. My friend challenged me to a race to the edge of one of these sheer drops on tractors. We choose our rides and off we went. (I think he won) But he stopped and I mistakenly pedaled the clutch instead of the brake and away I went.
At that instant, I saw nothing, yet I saw everything. I saw bright lights, felt intense euphoria, and I could see everything and everyone I had ever known.
I felt helpless and could not steer (and I don't mean the tractor) and unable to get back and comfort my family and friends who were devastated by my tragic accident - well, actually, stupidity. So much in so short a time that it would take to plunge that distance.
I was overwhelmed with feelings like I had never felt before. I then remember standing in water and looking around and asking myself if this is heaven? Because it looked like the bottom of the cliff I had just gone over, and I was disappointed since I had just been to a better place. So, there it is. I went over the cliff and landed on my head on an enormous rock the size of a car. I don't remember hitting. I stood in the water draped in blood and looked up to see my friend looking down at me in disbelief! I for the most part kept this to myself for the better part of my life. Who would believe it anyway? When the property owner was informed many years later, she was astounded that I lived. But the tractor was a shambles and her daughter said that she jumped off just in the nick of time. We were not allowed on the tractors.
Date NDE Occurred: Summer of 1969
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident 'Life threatening event, but not clinical death'
Free fall with tractor over a cliff.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Wonderful
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? Uncertain
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 During the actual fall.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? During the actual fall.
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
How can an entire life flash by in what was probably only seconds?
Were your senses more vivid than usual? Incredibly more vivid
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 Just seemed like I was directionless but moving forward and everywhere. Looked like I was heading somewhere but, didn't get there.
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: 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 Many bright flashes with a central and encompassing overall light that I seemed to gravitate to.
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? No It was undefined an intangible.
The experience included: Strong emotional tone
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Peace, serenity, euphoria, helpless.
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
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? Everything about the universe
The experience included: Life review
Did scenes from your past come back to you? My past flashed before me, out of my control Completely. I took from this event comfort in knowing there is nothing to fear in death. It is a good thing, comforting and welcome and the real pain is left to those who have not seen or experienced or can understand. As I was being pulled or led, if you will, I was helpless that I was unable to get back to them, to comfort those left behind that were so upset with my passing and the terrible accident. I felt supremely knowing and sad for the ones I left. I could not ease their pain and I wanted to. If only they could have felt what I was, they would have been happy I was where I was.
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? Conservative/fundamentalist Raised Catholic
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain I have many unanswered questions. I felt the answers were near at the event, but I did not get there.
What is your religion now? Liberal 'Raised Catholic, but I am not a good Catholic.'
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Uncertain I have many unanswered questions. I felt the answers were near at the event, but I did not get there.
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 I believe myself to have special knowledge because of what I experienced, saw and felt. In terms of purpose, I guess only time will tell. I sense that when I die, I will return to that very place. I am waiting and have no fear.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? No
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes Unlike previous, past or current experiences. Words seem totally inadequate.
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? Disappointed initially when I realized I was still here. It is not like I was having a bad life prior to this. It was fantastic in every way it could be for a sixteen year old. Relatively speaking, I was fortunate with loads of friends, health, good looks, athletic, fun and well-rounded. I should add 'stupid' also in hindsight!
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I shared it years later. Some were intrigued, some dismissive, some look at you like your crazy.
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 Because it was witnessed and there is no doubt I should have been killed. I was told later that a grounds keeper had accidently done similar and was killed years earlier. And I have never questioned what I know to have experienced.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real I have no doubt what I felt and to this day forty years later, I still recall clearly.
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? No.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? No. Well done.