I remember having an incredibly powerful fear of death before my surgery - a fear which vanished after my experience and has never returned. I had the nurses pray for me right before the surgery. I found myself in the presence of a heavenly light, which I was not allowed to enter, but only barely touch and observe. When it touched me, I was bathed in ethereal music. I not only heard this music, I became a part of it. There was life in the music - God was there. It flowed through me and me through it. There was more ecstasy in the music than any one single human could tolerate. I knew at that point that the music we play here on earth is simply a reflection of this 'source'. I felt more 'awake' than I had ever felt, as if this earthly life was but a dream and true consciousness happens after death. I know I was shown a landscape of something incredibly beautiful and that I was led by a being who told me to 'forget' what I had seen (presumably so I wouldn't want to die too soon).I remember everything happened at once, as if there were no time-line. When the light touched me, I knew that it was the great 'oneness.' All knowledge and experience of every human-plus was in that light.After the experience, I was so full of joy and ecstasy, that I saw life in everything. Even inanimate objects seemed to 'breathe'. I came away with an enormous appetite for creating music. I wrote some forty songs afterwards (I had never written songs before).My religious views changed after that as well. I realized that all religions (no exceptions) are man-made and extremely narrow in their views. Indeed, I saw the truth for the first time ever in extreme clarity.
Date NDE Occurred: 'June, 2000'
At the time of your experience, was there an associated life-threatening event? Yes Illness. Surgery-related 'Life threatening event, but not clinical death'
I had emergency gall bladder extraction. The gall bladder had over three hundred stones, and was gangrenous and necrotic. The surgeon came out and told my wife that I was very sick and may not make it through surgery. I was in the hospital for a week afterwards.
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 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 As above.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? The entire experience happened during the surgery (which lasted four hours). I was unconscious the whole time. I cannot give a specific timeline for the experience, since the whole thing seemed to happen 'at once'.
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
Everything happened without time (simultaneously).
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. As I said, my experience was in the spirit. No physical senses were used.
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 I don't have a memory of passing through the classic 'tunnel'. It may have happened that way, but I have no memory of it.
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 My only memory was of some type of angelic guide. It told me to 'forget' right at the end of the experience.
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
The experience included: A landscape or city
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm Some sort of otherworldly landscape that I was told to forget.
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Great joy, ecstasy, and enlightenment.
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
Did scenes from your past come back to you? My past flashed before me, out of my control I did not have a classic life review.
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? Moderate Non-practicing Christian
Have your religious practices changed since your experience? Yes I can barely tolerate religious dogma, especially when someone adamantly claims to have the answers because they got them from the 'book'.
What is your religion now? Moderate Mystic Christian
Did you have a change in your values and beliefs because of your experience? Yes I can barely tolerate religious dogma, especially when someone adamantly claims to have the answers because they got them from the 'book'.
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
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 When I was touched by the light, I knew that it was the great 'oneness.' All knowledge and experience of every human-plus was in that light.
After the experience, I was so full of joy and ecstasy, that I saw life in everything. Even inanimate objects seemed to 'breathe.' I came away with an enormous appetite for creating music. I wrote some forty songs afterwards (I had never written songs before).
My religious views changed after that as well. I realized that all religions (no exceptions) are man-made and extremely narrow in their views. Indeed, I saw the truth for the first time ever in extreme clarity.
In this life, we are responsible for taking care of our bodies, taking care of each other, and developing the gifts we are given.
Have your relationships changed specifically because of your experience? Yes I appreciate people more. I am more tolerant of people who have strong religious views (unless they feel like people who don't believe the way they do need to die), and I am not as upset when people pass on, because I know where they go and that they go on.
After the NDE:
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes I believe, since I was out of body, that I didn't take my brain with me (i.e. the experience wasn't recorded in my brain). The memory is a 'spirit' memory.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? Yes I became much more creative, especially musically.
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? Probably the music and origins of music was the most significant. Also, the taking away of my morbid fear of death.
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes I shared the experience with my wife and family right after surgery (same day). They are very spiritual people, so I shared freely, which they all took to heart.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes I had heard of such things from other people. I do not believe that knowledge influenced my experience. I didn't see anything I expected to see, but I can always tell if someone else had a 'real' experience, as there are usually similar circumstances to mine.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened? Experience was definitely real The inner knowledge, the creative gift.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience now? Experience was definitely real Even though the memory of it has faded somewhat (it has been nearly ten years) I still think about it, still have the songs I wrote, and every time someone shares their experience, I am reminded of mine.
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? Yes Meditation puts me back in touch with the oneness that I experienced.
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? I believe there is a change coming to this physical realm, but I couldn't tell you what it is.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? This was a very thorough questionnaire. The prompts gave me an opportunity to relate my experience accurately.
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