The woman, I knew very well, my mothers best friend. As she spoke, my heart beat faster and faster as I hung on to every word she said. She spoke of angels without wings, she spoke of complete serenity and calm, she spoke of a long dark tunnel. Joan spoke of her NDE, her Near Death Experience and what’s on the other side. I could feel that those of us in the room wanted to know more, that thirst for knowledge of death, what happens when we die.
I was interested to find out more about NDE’s (Near Death Experiences), not only by my natural curiosity and my talking with Joan, but also wanting to increase my comfort level. What happened to my grandmothers when they died? What did my best friend experience when she died? What will happen to me when I die? My research on the subject of NDE’s yielded so much information that I quickly realized that I can’t cover this topic in detail but I do want to share with you the major features of NDE’s that I find were not only extremely interesting, but were consistent in every article and book I have read.
The advances in medical technology have enabled doctors to, at times, bring people who have been at the brink of death, back. Because of this so many NDE’s can be documented today. Not everybody who has been clinically dead, and have come back, have had a Near Death Experience yet, it has been estimated that some 8 million Americans have had NDE’s, and a great number of these are children. There were common experiences that adults and children had, who experienced a Near Death Experience, that are difficult to dispute.
The first was that the individual had memories of Leaving Their Body, which was much like having an out-of-body experience and then seeing their body from above. During this time they remember hearing others pronounce them dead. They realize that the physical form they were in while alive is gone, and they also realize that their sexual identity doesn’t exist anymore…they just are! The person quickly finds that they are beginning a rapid travel through something most akin to a Long Dark Tunnel. Some described it as a dark cave, a dark well or a long valley. During the travel through the long dark tunnel there is a very Loud noise as if you were speeding in a car through a tunnel with the windows rolled down. At the end of the tunnel or cave is a very Bright Light or more correctly a Being of Light that has an indescribable brilliance. It is this Being of Light that engulfs the person with love, warmth, kindness and presence and proceeds to take the person on a Review of his or her life. Not only does the person see this review of their life, but they also feel what they felt at the time it was occurring. This life review was an evaluation of their life that this Being of Light provides. All of this happens very rapidly, but they remember it all.
Raymond Moody, who wrote the book “Life After Life” and is considered an authority on Near Death Experiences, interviewed 50 people who had a NDE. Those that had seen this “Being of Light” and felt the enormous love and strength emanating from it, did not want to go back. The feeling of serenity and acceptance was so overwhelming…whatever was back here was inconsequential.
Most all people who have a near death experience report seeing those they had known during their life that had already died. One woman said she had seen a very young boy dressed in blue and white and she immediately knew that this was her brother that had died. The interesting point about this was she had never realized she had even had a brother until this time. When she “came back” she told her father what she had seen and her father, in disbelief, then explained to her that her brother had died 47 years earlier at the age of 2 of a childhood disease, 1 year before she was born. The clothes she described were the clothes he died in.
Many have Companions during their journey. At times it is people that they had known during their life, sometimes it is what many described as angels. These angels never had wings..they just knew they were angels. Even young children who had NDE’s said “there were angels without wings”.
Most people have a hard time expressing or describing what actually occurred while glimpsing the other side because it was unlike anything they could compare it to here. “It was a three-dimensional experience that was so profound yet indescribable” one man said. Many said that during their NDE they were given the gift of all knowledge, you suddenly know the answers to everything. Knowledge was available all around. As one woman said ” for a moment it was like communication wasn’t necessary. I thought whatever I wanted to know could be known.”
Normal people have Near Death Experiences…non-religious, religious,Buddhists, Mormons etc., young and old. The consistent features I’ve described appear over and over. When my mother’s friend Joan spoke about her experience she did say the thing that effected her more than anything was the fact that she no longer is afraid to die. Near Death Experience – is it physiological? Is it a hallucination? Is it a mystical experience? Is it real? What is on the other side?