We were having a family picnic at the lake. My cousin (older male by a few years) and I walked to the lake. He found a wooden matchbox that I wanted to see but he wouldn't let me have it and threw it into the lake. I jumped in after it, the water was over my head, and I could not swim. He ran back to the picnic area for help. My father and uncle pulled me out and attempted CPR even though they weren't trained to do CPR. Eventually I was revived and taken to the hospital where I spent a couple of days in observation. After going in the lake, I found myself surrounded by vague images that I couldn't make out but they were in front of a bright light that was coming from all directions. There was a feeling of great love coming from all of them with an overwhelming feeling of love surrounding and behind them. The love I felt seemed to be the love of a grandmother, coming from each of them. After experiencing this feeling of love for a while, I was told it wasn't my time and I needed to go back but they would see me again in the future. When I came to, I was in my uncle's car with him driving and my father holding me in the passenger seat. I blacked out again and didn't come to for a couple of days.
Date NDE Occurred: 1960
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Accident. Drowning. CPR given Clinical death (cessation of breathing or heart function or brain function)
I fell into a lake and was a near drowning. The estimated time without breathing was 5 minutes.
How do you consider the content of your experience? Entirely pleasant
The experience included: Out of body experience
Did you feel separated from your body? No
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? Normal consciousness and alertness I was 4 at the time, so this is difficult to compare. I checked normal level just because I'm not sure if it was more, the same, or less.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? I don't think I can differentiate the level of my alertness or consciousness throughout the experience.
Were your thoughts speeded up? No
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
I really had no idea about time. It seemed that a lot was happening at the same time.
Were your senses more vivid than usual? No
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. My vision seemed hazier than in real life. I couldn't make out any details.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. It seemed like I could hear, differentiate, and comprehend multiple voices at the same time.
Did you seem to be aware of things going on elsewhere? No
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 There was nobody that I recognized but I felt they all knew me.
The experience included: Unearthly 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 I was surrounded by light, but it was so bright that it caused pain, it just made it difficult to visualize those souls around me.
The experience included: A landscape or city
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm I felt I was surrounded by souls and there was no ground that I was on and there was light and love infused throughout.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? No fear whatsoever, just great love. I really didn't want to leave and go back.
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 Everything seemed to make sense to me at that time but once I returned, I didn't have the understanding anymore. I've always felt a certainty that it will make sense again when I return.
Did scenes from your past come back to you? No
The experience included: Awareness of the future
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? Unknown
What was your religion prior to your experience? Christian- Protestant
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Uncertain Again, it's hard to say how it changed me. One thing I'd say is I often feel that the earth's religions don't quite get it right but I can't offer anything definitive. It's just a vague feeling that each is wrong. It feels like portions of each religion were put in place to try to prove their religion is more accurate than the others. What I KNOW is that love and understanding are the most important things for beings on earth. It seems like too many religions want to say they are the one true religion and their followers are willing to die and kill others in those beliefs. To me, this is absolutely wrong.
What importance do you place on your religious/spiritual life after your experience? Greatly important to me
What is your religion now? Christian- Protestant
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 was 4, I had no beliefs at that time.
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Uncertain I was 4 years old so I really have few memories prior to this experience.
The experience included: Presence of unearthly beings
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? I heard a voice I could not identify I heard a voice I could not identify
I heard or felt many, many voices that were unearthly.
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 I encountered many beings who I felt previously were on earth but I couldn't identify them.
During your experience, did you gain information about premortal existence? No
During your experience, did you gain information about universal connection or oneness? Yes I was aware of a oneness, a connection with God and all the other souls but also individuality.
Did you believe in the existence of God prior to your experience? Unknown
During your experience, did you gain information about the existence of God? Yes I was aware that God exists and is love.
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? No
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 During the experience, I understood the purpose of life but lost that memory upon return. At least that is what I've always felt since.
Did you believe in an afterlife prior to your experience? Unknown
Do you believe in an afterlife after your experience? An afterlife definitely exists Yes I felt with certainty that all the souls I met were previously on earth and also that life continues after death. While there, I understood why I was on earth and what came after but once I returned, that understanding was lost. The only thing that remain
Did you fear death prior to your experience? I did not fear death
Do you fear death after your experience? I do not 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 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? Unknown
During your experience, did you gain information about love? Yes Love was everywhere. It permeated the afterlife. It was incredible.
Were you compassionate after your experience? Greatly compassionate toward others
What life changes occurred in your life after your experience? Unknown I was 4 years old so I really have few memories prior to this experience.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Uncertain Uncertain It's hard to say what my relationships would have been like. I'm sure it changed how my parents raised me. I know we didn't regularly attend church prior to this event and became regulars afterward.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes I've never told anyone about it. It seems so unreal but has had a profound effect on my life, although I don't really have anything else to compare my life to. I've seen lots of movies about near death experiences and none really seemed to ring true until I saw the movie 'Afterlife' which was far closer to what I remembered than anything I'd ever seen regarding the 'experience'.
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
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? The entire experience is meaningful but no part is more or less meaningful.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? No
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 not real At 4 years old, the experience seemed unreal.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real The experience is with me all the time. It is part of my life, my beliefs of God and the afterlife. I know there is a purpose to life, although I realize that I don't understand what it is. It is probably beyond my understanding.
I've read about experiences of young children and understand that the vocabulary and mental resources of a 4-year-old limit my memories. I will probably never fully understand what occurred to me.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No
© 2014 NDERF, Jody Long & Jeffrey Long, MD. All Rights Reserved.