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Near-Death Experience of Space, Time, and Consciousness

Jack H. Hiler, Ph.D., J.D., is the author of the book, Near-Death Experience of Space, Time, and Consciousness: How the World Was Created and Functions (2019) and the author of a series of papers in the Journal of Consciousness Exploration & Research (2019). Based on many thousands of out-of-body experiences associated with the near-death experience, and correspondence of the experience to principles from Relativity Theory and quantum mechanics, the nature of existence and the role of consciousness are analyzed and a theory is proposed. This theory hypothesizes that there is a universal field of consciousness in which the individual consciousness (spirit and soul) functions both in life and in eternity, before and after an Earth life. Whereas standard science holds that the material reality we observe is fundamental, and regards consciousness as an epiphenomenon or unreal, Dr. Hiller’s theory proposed here explains why consciousness is fundamental, and supports the material reality we normally perceive.

Dr. Hiller has an unusual breadth of knowledge across psychology, math, computers, and physics. He started out as a bench level scientist in the Department of the Army, after having earned his Ph.D., and having served as a private in the Marines, and in the Army as an officer with a Captain’s rank. Dr. Hiller was eventually promoted from GS 13, 14, and 15 to super grade as the Director of the Army Research Institute (ARI) Training Systems R&D Lab, and as Associate Director of ARI which he ran from 1986-96. At the time, the Training lab was the world’s largest with around 120 in-house Ph.D.s and a comparable number working on supporting contracts. The ARI has drastically shrunk over the years. In 1996, Dr. Hiller was promoted to the Director for Human Systems Integration (HSI) in the Pentagon where he had policy and budget review oversight for all human related research and studies, along with another super grade position with protocol of a two-star General. Dr. Hiller retired from the Department of the Army in 1998. In 1999, Dr. Hiller went to work for Northrop Grumman Corp as a senior scientist and was promoted after a few months to Division Chief Scientist with about 1,500 computer programmers and many Ph.Ds in information sciences, electronics engineering, math, and physics. After a few years, Dr. Hiller was honored as Distinguished Technical Fellow. Dr. Hiller retired in 2010. The following is an overview of Dr. Hiller’s book, Near-Death Experience of Space, Time, and Consciousness: How the World Was Created and Functions, his Frozen Time Theory (FTT), and his recent NDE research.

Table of Contents

  1. Frozen Time Theory (FTT)
  2. Universal Consciousness Underlies All of Reality: a Tripartite Domain Theory
  3. Possible Enablers and Barriers to Dimensional Perception
  4. Analysis of the Differential Perception of Time in the Second and Third Domains
  5. Definitions of Now
  6. An Absolute Limitation to the Rational Analysis of Experience, Consciousness, and World Origin: the Principle of Interior Unknowability
  7. Review of Carlo Rovelli’s Book: The Order of Time
  8. A Postulate Set Governing Existential Knowledge
  9. What is Consciousness?
  10. A Theory of Knowledge: The Transcendental and the Mundane

1. Frozen Time Theory (FTT)

Frozen Time Theory (FTT) reports discovery of a reliable, but surprising, feature of the out-of-body experience (OBE) reports associated with traumatic near-death experiences (NDE). At the instant of a severe trauma, such as a heart attack or violent vehicle collision, the suffering individuals report being puzzled about what has happened, as they are suddenly viewing their environment from a different perspective. Typically, they are now located above their body, so that they no longer see through their eyes, but see from a different location. There was no apparent transition in consciousness or conscious perception to cue separation of consciousness from their body leading to their confusion over what had just happened. The lack of any distinctive transition for consciousness and conscious perception from the normal bodily state to consciousness and conscious perception during the OBE strongly implies that it is not the brain itself that is generating conscious experience. They also then start to notice that the nature of their sight has changed, as they can see through objects, can focus to the atomic level or out to the cosmos, and see in 360 degrees. Individuals who have been born blind also report experiencing this remarkable manner of perception. Realization develops that they have been effectively knocked dead, but still remain conscious.

A striking feature of OBE perception is that all entities observed exhibit consciousness, not only relatives and friends who have passed, and angels, but rocks, grass, flowers, trees, animals — even water. This experience is consistent with the ancient philosophy of panpsychism.

One of the great mysteries remaining for the psychology, neurology, and philosophy of perception is termed the issue of qualia, i.e., how can we perceive different qualities such as vision with different colors, sounds, and fragrances, but do so without the brain exhibiting differential structures for processing information after the senses have transduced energies to electrochemical energies in neurons. In the frontal lobes, where we believe perception is present, no differential structures or processes are found there corresponding to the differential qualities of perception. The FTT hypothesizes that the consciousness experienced during the OBE exists in a field or domain of consciousness in which individual entities share their existence without boundaries. Thus, FTT hypothesizes that perception during normal perception for the body and brain occurs not in the brain itself, but in the consciousness (soul) that had been attached to the normal body. The differential qualities of perception are dependent on how the field of consciousness functions, not on the brain producing the qualities of perception we experience.

One of the most interesting features of the OBE is the feeling that time no longer runs, and during the OBE it is reported that they have simultaneously viewed past scenes, their current environment, and future scenes. In addition, all entities viewed, including their own “body,” glow with the appearance of being made of light. The FTT relates the absence of time running, i.e., frozen time, with the formulation of Special Relativity that photons do not experience time. Thus, FTT hypothesizes that time during the OBE translates to a fourth spatial dimension, such that the past, present, and future correspond to differing locations in the domain of consciousness.

2. Universal Consciousness Underlies All of Reality: a Tripartite Domain Theory

In the FTT, I had accepted from the NDE reports that there existed two realities, our normal domain of reality associated with the paradigm of materialism, and an alternative domain of experience characterized as a field of consciousness in which all entities experienced appeared to be made of light, and time did not run.

An obvious question was about how these two domains might be related. Were they causally independent of each other, even if somehow correlated across time, or might they even be causally linked? Based on the NDE reports and the curious phenomenon of quantum entanglement, what Einstein spoofed about as “spooky action at a distance,” I inferred that our material reality was connected to the domain of consciousness. The NDE reports reliably stated that all thought of movement was capable of instantaneity, so if entangled particles existed in the domain of consciousness as well as the material domain, their instant communication would be accounted for.

Another question was about the possibility for a third domain. Was there anything that might have preceded the material and consciousness domains? The hypothesis that seemed best was that there initially existed a domain of pure consciousness in which nothing else existed, not light, not space, not time. This initial domain might be termed, in common with most religions, as God. This speculation is in fact consistent with the Old Testament according to which all that existed at first was God alone. God’s first act of creation was light. After light, He created the firmament, or material world. Thus, a tripartite domain theory was formed that is consistent with NDE reporting and the Old Testament. The relationships among the three domains are shown by the Venn diagram below. God is represented as Domain 1; the world of consciousness which includes light is the 2nd Domain; and the physical world we occupy is Domain 3.

3. Possible Enablers and Barriers to Dimensional Perception

The FTT and Tripartite domain papers acknowledge that our ordinary perception in our material domain separates time as an abstraction with space having three extended spatial dimensions. But in the second domain, as defined to be filled with consciousness and entities made of light, it was hypothesized that time also exists as an extended spatial dimension, so that different times in the material domain would correspond to different locations — without time running. This paper analyzes why common sense regards time in the material domain to have a different character than space. The analysis keys off of Edward Abbott’s clever Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions satire. It is argued that, while common sense regards space as perceptible, but time is regarded as an imperceptible abstract concept only, when time is termed “duration,” perception of time and space are equally abstract, and equally perceptible for the objects of sense-perception in the material domain.

4. Analysis of the Differential Perception of Time in the Second and Third Domains

This paper analyzes how perception of time progression (i.e., time is perceived to run) occurs in the material 3rd Domain, but does not occur in the 2nd Domain of consciousness to which the 3rd Domain is connected. The argument is made that perception of time depends on the domain being experienced.

5. Definitions of Now

In philosophy and psychology, some argue that only “now” exists, the past has forever gone, and the future is yet to be. Given the importance of “now,” alternative definitions are presented and discussed.

6. An Absolute Limitation to the Rational Analysis of Experience, Consciousness, and World Origin: the Principle of Interior Unknowability

After working for approximately a decade to produce a defensible theory for how the world came to be, I realized that I had made zero progress. I questioned why that effort was entirely futile, and came to an interesting conclusion — the question itself implied an observational framework external to a Creation event, but scientists could never in principle locate externally as “privileged observers” to be able to see what happened. Thus, a new postulate for the metaphysics of creation was defined. This postulate was termed the Principle of Interior Unknowability (PIU). It was argued that the PIU stands on two legs of support. The first leg is an analogy posed about fishes born in a fish tank having no opportunity ever to locate outside of their tank. From their interior location in the tank, they (or scientists in the material world) would never be able to learn where it came from or how it was made; the same argument applies if the world were instead conceptualized to be infinite with no boundaries. The second leg is a conjectured analogy with Kurt Godel’s Theorem of Undecidability, developed while he was working on his Incompleteness Theorems. This leg of the argument for the PIU reasons that postulates, axioms or assumptions based on internal observations of our world, applied to mathematically model its creation, are susceptible to creating a paradox (historically known as the Liars Paradox) by self-reference. To escape the potential for producing a valueless or misleading paradox, information would have to be gathered external to a system to be used for modeling its creation. Nevertheless, as pointed out by my friend Neil Siegel, a great deal of scientifically valid and useful information may indeed be acquired within the material world, despite the barrier to knowledge acquisition about creation postulated by the PIU.

7. Review of Carlo Rovelli’s Book: The Order of Time

Loop quantum gravity physicist Carlo Rovelli published an entertaining book that explained his preference for denying the utility of a time variable in physics, and even in psychology. This book review identifies points of agreement, but notably points of disagreement.

8. A Postulate Set Governing Existential Knowledge

In an earlier chapter, 6., the Principle of Interior Unknowability (PIU) was defined as a postulate which excluded any possibility for scientists to observe the conditions of the origin of the world, or to be able to infer from information collected within our material world how the world was constructed with any certainty, or “where it might have come from.” In this chapter, three additional Postulates are defined. One of these concerns the nature of existential reality, and states there are two domains for knowledge exploration: (1) the material domain in which we normally perceive the world, and (2) the domain of consciousness that underlies consciousness and conscious perception that may become available during the NDE/OBE or by meditation. This is the Postulate Governing Existence (PGE). The PGE defines the consciousness domain as fundamental. The third postulate is the Postulate Governing Knowledge (PGK) which defines knowledge to be incorporated in consciousness. As was also explained in Chapter 2 on Universal Consciousness, all individual entities possess consciousness, and “”knowledge” is information incorporated into their consciousness. The fourth postulate affirms DescartesMind-Body Dualism that mind and brain ordinarily communicate, despite being different in kind. This is the Postulate for Mind-Body Dualism (PMBD).The set of four postulates governs the nature of Existential Knowledge (EK). With the EK as a set theoretic foundation, the potential for extra-sensory phenomena is explainable. We may summarize that the nature of any and all knowledge about existence, EK, is a function of PIU, PGE, PGK, and PMBD.

9. What is Consciousness?

A brief historical review of the concept of consciousness is provided from the perspectives of philosophy, psychology, and neurology. The weaknesses in traditional analyses of the nature of consciousness are explained, followed by a synthesis of consciousness (with mind and soul) based on the previous eight chapters. The 2nd Domain of consciousness is recognized as the foundation for how the 3rd Domain of materialism functions. It was concluded that the reality of what consciousness is and how it is known denies any useful ability to define it by reference to objectively observable experience, so it must be regarded as an indefinable, primitive term.

10. A Theory of Knowledge: The Transcendental and the Mundane

Knowledge is analyzed to fit two main classifications: (1) the Transcendental idealized forms as described by Plato, and (2) the mundane experiences generated by the body/brain living in the material world. Knowledge of each of the two types is examined for how it is acquired (from the 2nd Domain) or learned by sense-perception experienced in the 3rd Domain. Knowledge learned through life in the 3rd Domain is unreliable because of imperfections in our sense-perception mechanisms, and because memory storage and retrieval are prone to intervening learning distortions and aging processes. By contrast, knowledge acquired directly from or while in the 2nd Domain is perfectly accurate and not subjected to any aging process because time does not run in the 2nd Domain.

11. Conclusions

Overall, the text argues that Creation and “consciousness” fundamentally exist beyond the boundaries of conventionally acquirable scientific knowledge. The specific arguments employed made use of analogy and the Liar’s Paradox to support an out-of-bounds conclusion defined by the Principle of Interior Unknowability (PIU), and appear to be novel for the metaphysics literature. The NDE reports demonstrate a high degree of perceptual consistency for the OBE experience, such as time no longer perceived as running, all entities perceived to be made of light, and actions driven by thought perceived as instantaneous; all of these perceptions were found to be consistent with Relativity Theory and quantum mechanics. A theoretical foundation was laid for the reality of paranormal phenomena. It was found from the review of over 4,000 NDE reports available on the NDERF.org and IANDS.org web sites that the NDEs were dominated by experiencing the light and love of a God Creator, even for those who were agnostic or atheist before their NDE. Based on these NDE reports and the neo-Platonic concept of Transcendental knowledge having been provided to the human conscience, a proposed code of conduct was included in the Annex. The quest to develop knowledge about Creation and consciousness ends in a conclusion that, by our being immersed in them, they are not ever directly observable by us as material beings. However, conventional science is plagued by those who either seek to deny their existence, or instead seek to scientifically describe and explain them, whereas the PIU shows that both of such opposing perspectives are wrong.

12. Dr. Hiller’s Near-Death Experience Study

On February 3, 2020, Dr. Hiller completed an NDE study involving an analysis of the most recently archived NDE reports (62 total) on NDERF.org to develop a sample frequency estimate for experiencing God, Jesus, and other major religious figures. As a side note, when Dr. Hiller discusses OBE reports, he tends to report the experience as “experience” instead of as “perception.” He states the reason for this distinction flows from how he proposed to solve the issue of “qualia” in perception, following Eben Alexander‘s reporting about his OBE as experiencing everything as his being a part of everything, as opposed to how we look at things as separated observers in this material domain to achieve perception.

A Frequency Analysis for a Sample of NDE Reports

An analysis of the most recently archived NDE reports (62 total) on NDERF.org at was performed to develop a sample frequency estimate for experiencing God, Jesus, and other major religious figures. Nine categories of information were defined for coding as representing an experience or not:

  1. Agnostic, atheist, New Age, or nothing before the NDE
  2. Christian affiliation
  3. Non Christian to include Muslim, Jewish, and Buddhist
  4. Experience of a mystical light
  5. Experiencing God as a huge zone of light that enveloped the spirit
  6. Experiencing God as a being with personality
  7. Experiencing Jesus as a personality
  8. No experience of light or a deity, just an OBE
  9. A hellish experience.

Results

Unfortunately for “purely clean” scoring, these categories proved not to be mutually exclusive, as multiple elements were reported for the experience; for example, in one report there was a mystical light at first, then it developed into a huge zone of brilliant light recognized as God, and then Jesus was also experienced, so 4., 5., and 7. were scored.

One unanticipated finding was a glaring disproportion of NDEs for those who did not profess belief in God. According to a 2017 USA research estimate by Pew reported by The Atlantic 63% definitely believe in God regardless of religious affiliation, leaving 37% who do not or are uncertain. A recent academic study estimated that 26% of Americans do not believe in God. So, it’s fair to set 37% as a baseline estimate of the agnostic/atheist percentage. In this sample of 62 NDE reports, 56% were agnostic or atheist or not willing to commit to belief in God (category 1). A test to estimate if 56% is statistically significantly different from 37% (using 26% would have produced a higher level of statistical significance) yielded a Z value (2.6) which is significant for a reliable difference at a probability of less than .009, which is a stronger result than the .05 level generally used to decide if there were a reliable difference. Thus, it appears that NDEs are more frequent for those who did not already have belief in God, implying that they were getting a wake-up call for a life course correction.

There were four Muslims in this sample. Two experienced only a mystical light, and the other two had an OBE without an experience of God. Muhammad was not experienced.

There was one Buddhist and his experience was in category 5 of immersion in a huge zone of light that produced “incredible joy.” He did not see any image of Buddha, but decided it was apt to label this light as Buddha.

Jesus was reported to have been experienced by 13% (including one by the only Jewish respondent), while God was experienced (from categories 5 and 6) by 29%, with two experiences as personal. There were two hellish experiences reported.

One striking result was the dominance of category 4, the experience of mystical light in which they were immersed by 63% of the reports. I interpret this as support for the Tripartite Domain theory (see Near-Death Experience of Space, Time, and Consciousness) theorizing that the 2nd Domain (which is Heaven) is a universal field of consciousness functioning as a medium for light, with all entities existing in this Domain manifesting as forms of light.

Conclusion

This pilot study appears to warrant further research to increase the sample size and scope of investigation about the perceptions and implications for deities occurring in near-death, spiritually transformative, and out-of-body experiences.

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Dr. Richard Eby’s NDE and the Second Coming of Christ

Dr. Richard E. Eby, D.O., F.A.C.O.O.G., D.Ed., Ph.D. (1912-2002) was a nationally recognized osteopathic physician, gynecologist, professor and surgeon with a very successful practice. In 1972, Dr. Eby accidentally fell from his three-story apartment landing head-first resulting in a profound NDE. While experiencing the wonders of paradise, Dr. Eby met Jesus Christ in all his glory and had a long conversation with him. Jesus told Dr. Eby that he must enter a ministry of healing others; and that he would be alive when Jesus’ Second Coming occurs. However, Dr. Eby died in 2002 and apparently the Second Coming has not occurred. With Eby’s prophecy an apparent failure, skeptics and fundamentalists Christians alike labeled Dr. Eby a “false prophet” and questioned his entire NDE. This article presents my arguments why Eby is not a false prophet, nor is his prophecy a failure, and includes a detailed account of his amazing NDE testimony.

Table of Contents

  1. An Overview of Dr. Richard Eby’s NDE and ADC with Jesus
  2. Why Dr. Eby’s Testimony About the Second Coming of Christ May Be True
  3. Dr. Eby’s NDE and His Long Conversation With Jesus
  4. A Detailed Description of Dr. Eby’s Spirit Body
  5. A Detailed Description of the Heaven Dr. Eby Experienced
  6. Dr. Eby Returns to His Physical Body

1. An Overview of Dr. Richard Eby’s NDE and ADC with Jesus

In 1972, Dr. Eby was leaning against a railing at a Chicago apartment building when the support gave way, plunging him three stories, landing headfirst. As his mortally injured body was loaded into an ambulance, Eby had a near-death experience of “the most exquisite place entirely without shadows.” Fascinated with his ethereal, white-robed body, he was able to give the most detailed description of the spirit body this webmaster, Kevin Williams, has ever read – including the observation of having no genitals which is an observation a professional gynecologist would be concerned about. His description of heaven as an luminescent realm with indescribable music, beauty and exotic fragrances is also one of the most detailed descriptions of heaven I have come across. While experiencing the grandeur of paradise, Eby met Jesus Christ in all his glory and had one of the longest conversations with him I am aware of. In this article, you can read the transcript of their conversation and his NDE excerpted from Dr. Eby’s book, Caught Up Into Paradise. Eby’s NDE ends with him hearing his wife calling out for him to return. Eby opened his eyes to excruciating pain and found himself laying in a hospital bed. From a glowing cloud floating above him, Jesus told Eby he must now enter a ministry of healing others.

Fully recovered, Dr. Eby toured Israel in 1977 and had the opportunity to visit Lazarus’s tomb. While in the depths of the illuminated tomb with a group of other people, the lights inside the tomb mysteriously failed. During the following chaos, Jesus appeared to Eby again, stating that, whereas Eby had seen heaven, Eby would now see hell. Jesus gave him the following commission: “You must be able to tell them. They can choose between heaven or hell, but tell them that I died to close hell and open heaven just for them.”

With that, Dr. Eby was suddenly transported to hell; and, for the next two minutes, he endured the horrors of hell with its cold, rot, and isolation. As a result of this startling visitation, Eby traveled the world with his wife Maybelle, proclaiming God’s grace and healing power. In 1978, Eby closed his medical practice in order to follow his full-time ministry calling. His after-death communication (ADC) with Jesus in Lazarus’ tomb is recounted in Eby’s follow up book, Jesus Told Me to Tell Them I Am Coming. Further miracles are recounted in this book which also details Eby’s national exposure from his appearances on the Trinity Broadcasting Network, and the attention generated by the miracles – both physical and spiritual – accompanying his encounters with the sick.

As mentioned previously, Eby’s NDE is also unique in one more important point. During his conversation with Jesus, Eby was told he would be alive when the Second Coming of Christ occurs. But on December, 26, 2002, Eby died from a protracted illness of which he tried to stay alive as long as he could. Apparently, neither the Rapture nor the Second Coming has occurred. With Eby’s prophecy an apparent failure, skeptics and fundamentalists Christians alike concluded Eby to be a false prophet; and therefore, put his entire NDE into question. But I, the webmaster of this site, do not agree with this assessment as you will find in this article. It is quite possible Jesus has already returned through reincarnation and is alive today. There is strong Biblical and extra-Biblical evidence of Jesus teaching reincarnation as the real interpretation of bodily rebirth known as the “Resurrection of the Dead.” Jesus often preached in parables to hide their higher spiritual meaning from the uninitiated. There is also evidence of the Bible having several levels of interpretation. With this in mind, we should evaluate Dr. Eby’s testimony with an open mind and understand the possibility that God works in mysterious ways.

2. Why Dr. Eby’s Testimony About the Second Coming of Christ May Be True

If we accept subjective NDE testimonies such as Eby’s at face value, we can conclude that the second coming of Jesus has already occurred. Otherwise, Eby’s testimony would be a false testimony showing Jesus speaking a falsehood in an NDE. However, I have a strong reasons to believe Eby’s testimony was not false and that Jesus has returned – not by appearing in the clouds as described in the highly symbolic Book of Revelation and gospels suggest – but by means of reincarnation. It seems obvious to me that Jesus would enter into this world the same way he did the last time, through human birth. This reaction to this idea among certain Christians is one of hostility. Because it suggests the reality of reincarnation rather than resurrection. It shouldn’t be thought strange that Christ would return this way, after all, reincarnation was a widely held belief in Jesus’ day, even among Christians and Jesus himself. I have no doubt that Jesus told Eby that he would return before his passing and I have no doubt that it happened just as Jesus said it would. Some Christians will just have to accept that Jesus is here already just as he told Eby. It shouldn’t be difficult for a Christian to believe “reincarnation” to be the correct interpretation of “resurrection.” There is strong Biblical proof that the early Christians and Jesus taught reincarnation. There also exists a history of reincarnation beliefs among the early Christians. The true meaning of “resurrection”, as believed by many early Christians, is not the same as the widely-held meaning as it exists today.

For these reasons, there should be no reason at all to believe Eby’s testimony about Jesus is false.

Eby’s NDE is unusual in another aspect in that he uses much of his own religious bias to describe his experience. Jody Long, an researcher with NDERF, points out the following fact: “One of the near-death experience truths is that each person integrates their near-death experience into their own pre-existing belief system.” This important truth must be kept in the back of one’s mind when reading these different accounts.

The following is his testimony concerning his encounter with Jesus from his book Caught Up To Paradise.

3. Dr. Eby’s NDE and His Long Conversation With Jesus

I gasped! Suddenly in a new body in a new place with new life, I was ecstatically joyful: no pain, no tears, no sorrow, no memory. Nothing but incomprehensible peace and infilling love. All was perfection. I stood awestruck in a new weightless body, translucent and floating. Total love enveloped and perfused me! What peace!

Then THE VOICE: unmistakably sovereign, majestic, divine! None other can ever compare. It seemed to originate within my head, speaking from me, yet to me. With the authority of God, it thundered across a great valley in which I had just landed: “Dick, you’re dead!”

The voice of my Creator was speaking! It explained how I had gotten to heaven in timeless speed; and above all it established an intimacy between us which is called divine love. I was his child, Dick! Never had I been more excited. Truly I was in heaven’s paradise, in Jesus, with his mind in me. We were as one!

I invite each reader to share with me the following descriptions of how Jesus spoke with me in paradise, in hell, on Earth, and through his book. He specifically commanded me to tell such things, saying:

“These are the last days before I return for my body of believers. I am coming for them soon!”

He explained that he would be giving some of his children (when “available”) many documenting evidences to validate his prophecies.

“I need eyewitnesses of my glory and truth now. You are but one. Go, tell them, tell them, tell them! There is but little while until I come for my body of believers.”

Everything was bathed in shadowless light, with a baptism of love. Then it hit me! I WAS AT HOME! MY REAL HOME! I BELONGED HERE where the presence of Jesus enfolded me.

I was momentarily speechless with the ecstasy of it all! Then I realized that Jesus’ voice had declared me “dead.” Yet I was totally alive. He really had meant that only the former body and its imperfect mind were dead. A glance down the gorgeous length of my valley ended my silence: I heard my self shout: “Jesus, where am I?”

Instantly, before I could complete my query, that same voice in a tone of gentle thunder echoed within my head: “Didn’t you read my book?”

He was speaking to me (in fact, in me) with a speed greater than lightning, and in a language of sweet purity unlike anything that an earthly tongue could utter. I gasped again. I had HIS MIND, impossible as it seemed! Every word clearly meant exactly what was being said. We seemed to have a joint mind: I would ask, and he would answer. The speed of this communication in such a MIND is hard to describe in human terms. Perchance I can now liken it to a printed page on which the questions being typed have the answers typed upon them, line upon line, at the same time, instantly.

Jesus began his answer: “If you had read my book you would have known all the answers. Before I ever told my disciples to preach my good news, I promised never to leave nor forsake them. As I sat outside the temple I disclosed my impending death and my return to glory as being necessary for their ministry. Then I would transfer my power to them by sending my Holy Spirit into them from Pentecost onward. He would take my place in and among them on Earth as another Comforter! I gave them a certain promise:

“I am going to prepare a place for you. I will come again and receive you unto myself, that where I am there may ye be also.

“I had already explained to my followers that my Father had made them one in me, as I was one in the Father. That makes us inseparable, as ONE.”

Jesus paused as though the next thought on his mind pained him greatly.

“My son,” he resumed, “as it is written in my book, on the next day I was arrested, tried, and crucified for claiming identity with Jehovah. At my right hung a dying thief who stopped ridiculing me when he noted the sign over my head: ‘KING OF THE JEWS’ He believed it when he looked into my eyes, and called over to me: ‘Master, remember thou me when you come into your glory!’

“My book tells you that I immediately promised him: ‘This day shalt thou be with me in paradise!’

“The thief heard me before the centurions broke his legs so he would die immediately! My beloved disciple, John, also heard me as he stood near my bleeding feet. I then asked him to take my mother home with him because he could explain what I had said to her and the disciples.

“I gave up my spirit to my Father as soon as I announced to the crowd, ‘It is finished!’ Then I was free to prepare paradise for that repentant thief in heaven. This is my home here in the third heaven with my saints. You are in paradise this day!”

Jesus had answered my first question! I had instantly sensed that I was in heaven upon arrival there, but now I knew which part this was! I had so much more to ask about this new home.

To be talking with the Creator of the universe, mind to mind, in this paradise, was unspeakably exciting. Questions flooded through my new mind.

“But Jesus,” I blurted out, “Tell me your definition of paradise. It is obvious that I am in heaven with you because everything is so perfect. Tell me more!”

As he replied, his regal voice seemed to bubble over with excitement and joy and love. I sensed his pleasure at having a child of his come home this day: “My child, didn’t you read my book? I was so careful to explain that I would prepare for each of you in the heavenly places, an abode with me. I even arranged for my disciples to watch me ascend into the heavens, enfolded in my Shekinah glory cloud. I assigned two angels to meet them there outside of Bethany to reassure them that I would return in like manner. And I will do so!

“Later I allowed my chosen lad, Stephen, to see me seated at the right hand of my Father in heaven, just to prove to his executioners that I was there, alive! Saul had ordered the stoning. He was holding Stephen’s clothes. It shocked him to hear Stephen shout with ecstasy at seeing me. You see, I had plans for Saul that would require me to blind him with my light and later be stoned to death at Lystra so I could catch him up to this third heaven and show him the unspeakable glories of heaven. He would be instantly persuaded from then on that absolutely nothing could ever separate him from our love. After he saw paradise, I told him to write about it, and I changed his name to Paul.”

As Jesus talked, I became increasingly startled. The speed of his “heaven-language” was incredible yet totally clear within my head. At the same instant he was obviously replacing the needed memories which death of my original brain tissue had erased. Later, as we walked and talked that day I discovered that he also placed upon my new mind the very questions which I should ask! Only by asking him the proper question could he give the needed answer!

After he returned me to life on Earth I checked his book to find confirmation of this truth: sure enough, there it is: Jesus’ earthly brother, James, had written to us: “Ye ask and receive not because ye ask amiss.” Also, St. Paul nailed down the fact by writing: “We know not what we should pray for as we ought … but the Spirit itself makes intercession for us.” What a lesson for us on Earth! For us the Spirit prays, and for us Jesus looks upon the heart to find our true need!

“Now, my Son, to answer your question: Paradise is a holding tank for the souls who have accepted me as their savior simply by faith in my having laid down my life to redeem them from the curse of sin. I prepared a new place for each of them, as I had promised. It is one of my gifts of mercy and grace, that their joy may be full! Here they become one with me, completing the talents which I gave each one so that each can function as a distinct member in my body.

“Paradise is also my heavenly school for perfecting the saints. You must be taught how to become priests and kings in my kingdom so as to teach others to worship My Father in spirit and in truth. I am your teacher renewing your mind to comprehend the greatness of our unsearchable riches of grace and mercy and love for all.”

He paused from his exciting explanation to let me gasp.

Another query burst from my mind to his: “Do you mean, Jesus, that each of your children in paradise has a separate place just for his particular enjoyment?”

Jesus replied: “Yes, my son! Didn’t you read in my book that I would go to prepare a PLACE – not a commune, nor a kibbutz; not a tenement nor a tract house? It would be a place fit for providing the abundant joys and fulfilled dreams and talents of each child, as a new creature, My joint heir! Each person is unlike any other, except that I am in each one, perfecting, teaching, sanctifying. Each of their abodes reflects the perfection of the purposes and promises for which I prepare my people and places!

“I know my sheep, just as they know my voice. I made them. Heaven is so large that I have unlimited space for each one’s paradise, a place of his own. This is just a tiny portion of heaven. I have limitless plans. I think of paradise as my sheepfold; I am its gate!

“This is your paradise. It is what you could not fashion for yourself, so I did it for you. That was my promise. It is your temporary abode for now!”

I was stunned with excitement. This huge valley of celestial beauty was mine? The perfection of its forests, flowers, meadows and mountains was awesome.

But even so, the presence of Jesus in and about me was more important right now. I must ask another question that sudden formed.

Surely this great valley (among whose meadows of flowers I found myself standing) looked to be permanent. Yet Jesus had stated that it was a temporary abode, a holding tank! Four-pedaled flowers with their golden throats extended up into my legs, apparently as oblivious of my presence, as I was insensitive to theirs. Nothing seemed at all temporary.

In amazement I asked: “Jesus, what is temporary about this place, my paradise? It seems timeless to me!”

Jesus replied: “Didn’t you read my book, son? My Father’s plans are even greater for you than this. I explained that he is preparing a body of new creatures, which I have called members. This is the place where the souls of you who die before that BODY is completed are being assembled. Each member has an assignment to perform once I join him to me, the Head. Each day more members are being added as my earthly children surrender themselves into my arms. One of these days my body of true believers will be completed to my Father’s satisfaction.”

He paused as though the joy of that thought had overwhelmed him for the moment.

“My Father assures me that the time is yet a little while, but very little. Soon he will call those already in paradise to surround me as we descend from this third heaven to the first heaven around the Earth. The souls of all my saints will be instantly clothed in their new resurrection bodies, as will the living saints on Earth who rise to us in the glory cloud! At the sounding trumpet they all receive new bodies and rise to meet us in the air. We return as my body to my throne room with the Father. Now do you understand why I called this place a temporary abiding place? Do you grasp what it will mean to be one with me and the Father in your incorruptible bodies? My book states that I assumed mankind’s sin so you ‘might be made the righteousness of God’ in me!”

I can clearly recall how Jesus’ voice paused at this moment. He was savoring an anticipation too intense and private to be revealed. Was he pre-living that moment at which he would enjoy the victory which his Father would give him as the eternal reward for his own long-suffering? His own sting of death would be swallowed up, and he would be the omniscient Head of a completed and compliant body for whom he had shed his blood on a terrible cross. He would reign as KING of the Jews after these days of grace. Then his thoughts returned to me.

“My son, when that time has come, my Father will call to me. The applause of the heavenly hosts will be deafening; they too have been awaiting that day, ever since they announced my birth to the shepherds at Bethlehem so long ago. Scoffers will gaze with fear and wonder as my angelic hosts watch me fulfill my promise to my earthly body of believers at my soon return to Earth.

“My book records the many signs which will precede my coming for my family. I tried to explain those events to my disciples, very carefully. I promised them that I was leaving my Holy Spirit as a comforter to instruct them as they studied my word, and to tell them of the things to come. I want my children to be informed about our plans in advance. I want them to be filled with my joy. After all, they are mine: I created them and bought them back from satanic slavery. I told them that I would come for them so that we could be together forever. My Father wants them all to believe Me.”

His lightening-fast discourse ceased. I surveyed my paradise and this new body that floated!

I glanced at my wrist to note the time, since there was no sun in the sky. My wrist had no watch on it, nor was there any telltale evidence of a watchband. In fact, the whole arm and body was of a beautiful, glowing, semi-transparent material without mar or scar. I gasped to realize that this was ME! (I would ask Jesus more about it later.) A strange sense of timelessness gripped me. It was simply awesome!

I exclaimed: “Jesus, what happened to time, it seems to have vanished!”

His disbelief at such a silly question in paradise was evident in his voice as he replied with loving restraint: “My child, the book tells you clearly that all things seen or unseen, felt or unfelt, are my creations. Without me nothing was made that was made. Originally there was nothing at all but the everlasting God in whom I am the Creator. That included what is known as ‘time’ in the universe of the firmament. Remember? I named myself the ‘Alpha and Omega,’ the beginning and completion of all things. Remember? I took my beloved John to heaven one day to foresee the fulfillments of my promises. He was so overwhelmed at seeing me that I had to introduce myself again as the ‘Amen, the Faithful, True Witness,’ and the beginning Creator of the creations of God! I had taken him ahead in ‘earthly time’ to the ‘day of the Lord’, the time of my victory over the works of Satan. We exist here in that timelessness, the eternity of God, the kind of life that does not perish! It is our gift of love, ‘eternal life!'”

The simplicity of his explanation left me shaken. All that I could think was, “Of course!” Jesus had quietly restated that only the most high God could create anything. Neither an idol nor a man could do so! For every reason conceivable, no one less than God could make a universe without raw materials or divine intelligence. History and common sense prove that especially ‘eternity’ itself!

Expanding love and praise exploded within me as I sensed the immensity of the person who was talking to me so gently.

“You are wonderful, Jesus. You do not think or act or promise in terms of ‘time’, do you? Therefore your thoughts are unlimited. You can see all things as having happened already, even before they occur. That is how you can plan all events and creations to work together for the good of Your BODY and the glory of you, our Head! Even this paradise you made for me was prepared before I would arrive, wasn’t it? You planned and planted all these fantastic trees, flowers, and grasses in my valley in advance of my coming here today, didn’t you?”

As if wreathed in smiles at my comprehension, he replied:

“Verily, my son! That is why I am the Truth, since no one but God could be. I am showing you now that what I said in my book about death and paradise, and even about my promise of you and me being together as one in eternity, is the truth. I and my word are one also. Again I emphasize that I have written only truth in my book. I have begged my people ‘to ask and seek and knock’ as evidence of their earnest search for my everlasting love. So few ever do. Even my disciples failed to ask. I had to chide them by stating, ‘Ye have not because ye ask not!’

“I even made it very simple for them by promising if any two would agree upon a request, I would answer. I already had prepared the right answer in advance; by faith they were to accept it. That is how my Father, our Spirit and I have arranged for all things to work together for those who love us. I told them to abide in me so that whatsoever they would seek would be our will to give.”

Then Jesus paused as though disappointed in something.

“Oh that my children on Earth would believe me! Oh that they would trust my word, and would talk with me! I gave them the model of how to pray; it is childlike because it is the expression of confidence. ‘Our Father,!’ He is the hallowed God, the only God who can help; the only God who loves them and listens. I told them to request that ‘his kingdom come and his will be done on Earth.'”

That means now. Their mouths speak it but their hearts doubt it. How can he answer if they do not worship in spirit and in truth?

“My gift is eternal life which has to start on Earth where they need its cleansing power, and where we need our good news of salvation accepted. Oh that my people would start their lives with me there so they could live abundantly and not perish! Why do they want to wait and wait until it is too late?”

His voice seemed to drift off into a fog of sadness. I sensed that he was reliving a Gethsemane of agony where he had foreseen a world of people rejecting his way to share their lives with him. It had made him bleed!

He had explained about timelessness, so it now seemed a good “time” to inspect this paradise of mine a bit more closely. Nothing so grand could be imagined as a “walk” with Jesus who could answer the swarms of questions forming in my new mind.

“What a view! What a place Jesus had prepared!”

I hung stock-still suspended in weightlessness a few feet above the flowered meadow. The ecstatic release from gravity in this new body was part of the permeating peace which surrounded me. Without time, I had no need to hurry.

Music surrounded me. It came from all directions. Its harmonic beauty unlike earthly vocal or instrumental sounds was totally undistorted. It flowed unobtrusively like a glassy river, quietly worshipful, excitingly edifying, and totally comforting. It provided a reassuring type of comfort much like a protective blanket that whispered peace and love. I had never sensed anything like it. Perhaps “angelic” would describe it.

This music was “sounding” within my head, not from an eardrum. Obviously it was not airborne. Most unusual to me was the absence of any “beat.” Then I realized that without “time” this heavenly music could have no beat which is a measure of time! I was hearing harmonic perfection, undistorted by any interposed medium between me and its source, as heard mind-to-mind. I could wait no longer to ask: “Jesus, tell me about this wondrous music all about me. Who is the composer? How is it made? From whence does it come? It is gorgeous!”

I was not disappointed when he began his answer by again asking me: “Didn’t you read my book? Repeatedly it exhorts my children to praise me with music from strings, trumpets, timbrels and voices. It is and was the prime communication of worship and praise and thanksgiving. Since I am the Creator, I am the composer of heaven’s music which you are hearing.”

Music became the resulting harmony from all of our creations, both of matter and energy. All resonated in unison with us. The elementary form was of and from and in ourselves. I might explain it as a triad of sub-electronic energy particles with and around which We constructed everything in our universe. The wave-forms we called light; whereas the material-forms we called dust of the Earth and water and air. Out of these, and into these, we created animals and birds and fishes and vegetable life to support them. Over these we created a mankind to supervise them as our appointed custodians made in our special image to act for us on Earth!

Jesus hesitated as I tried to capture the immensity of his explanations.

“You must understand, my son, that original creation mirrored the composition and perfection of Person-God. All creation vibrated in unison with us! There was total accord and harmony everywhere as the whole creation was resonating with and in God!

“Each separate thing or being thus carried out an appointed task in our scheme for the universe. A heaven-form of music resulted as even the stars sang in their appointed circuits. Here in paradise you are hearing these melodious vibrations directly upon your new mind, undistorted. On Earth you heard distorted sounds through the air waves. Throughout heaven the music flows from my throne, uninterrupted, undefiled, and peace-giving.”

Jesus paused again.

“My book tells of the time when Lucifer’s rebellion in heaven changed some things. He sought to usurp my Father’s throne, assume his position as the most high God, and to rule the universe. For that blasphemy Lucifer was cast from heaven to Earth; in fact, I saw him fall as a bolt of lightning! In a tantrum of hate and rage over being deposed so fast he and his fallen angels disfigured our perfect Earth. It became void and uninhabitable. For punishment befitting his enemy of God, Lucifer was given a new name, Satan, since he was the self-appointed ‘adversary’ of the Almighty. Anything that God had made, Satan would attempt to destroy from then on. As Lucifer he had been created the highest angel about the throne, one of his assignments and talents being the chief musician in charge of worship and music. In his rebellious anger he set about destroying harmony on and in the Earth from then on. That is why the Earth where he operates now is out of harmony with God’s other creations. In my book we call this disharmony ‘sin’, because it defies God’s will that even the heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament show his handiwork.

“But be of good cheer, my son. The Father has permitted me to overcome Satan’s world system of sin, and to destroy the works of Satan, and to re-establish righteousness in the hearts of my friends. Eventually in his chosen time he will restore all creation as it once was, in him!”

It was clear enough that God’s “heaven-music” was ever-present as a permeating reminder of the purity and power in its Creator. As God’s methods of communication are headlined by music, even so is Satan’s method of distorting its language to deceive through his “rock”! Jesus had clearly implied already that one of his final missions would be to destroy the very “works of the devil” which include all music that fails to honor the Lord. Messiah promised to destroy any disharmonies which Satan uses to lure and deceive innocent children into the pits of hell!

The music around me suddenly seemed louder. I rushed to a nearby tree and grasped its trunk to my ear: it was “singing.” I lifted my right elbow to my head; it too emitted the same joyous, beatless melody. Excitedly I stopped to pick some flowers, and found them already in my hand. They too were “playing” the tune.

This bouquet in my hand made me gasp in wonderment for two reasons: it was so suddenly there in my hand without my having as yet picked it, and it was so exceedingly beautiful! I had merely thought about a bouquet, and there it was, ready for my inspection.

I was now gazing at stamens and pistils and calyces of transparent gold. Lengthwise through them I could see down into their stems. It was my first moment to see an example of heaven’s liquid transparent gold? Such a thrill to share its beauty!

Then I noted the stems which filled my palm! Soft as velvet, and devoid of moisture, yet so alive! The pure-white petals, four to each flower, were identical, flawless, and picture-perfect. They seemed to be internally energized since all were emitting light of appropriate color.

I blurted out (mind-to-mind): “Jesus, I do not understand. I just decided to pick some flowers. They are already in my hand. I can see transparent golden centers, and their stems are waterless. I also sense that I am speaking with You through a new mind, with which I receive immediate answers!”

Jesus replied: “My son,” came the reply, “you are discovering how my mind works. Here in paradise I have given you a portion of my MIND with which we communicate. You just discovered one of its properties: a thought in heaven instantly becomes an act or a fact. DIDN’T YOU READ MY BOOK? In it I told my children that ‘ye have the Mind of Christ’ when you are in me. On Earth they too seldom use it. Here in paradise it is the only mind. The earthly mind died with the carnal body; it was an enmity to me! Flesh and blood can not inherit the kingdom of God; only a righteous mind is present in heaven.

“Here I speak mind-to-mind in my heaven-language. My word immediately performs my will. It is truth! To create, I think, and it is done. Of course, Satan has no power to interfere in this heaven.

“I hung the stars in space to tell of my protection and promises. When I wanted an earthly family to fellowship with me, I thought of God’s image, and it became a man who would live with life-flowing blood. I thought of animals, fish and birds: there they were, ready to eat the foods which I had carefully prepared for them that day. Even now, when I wish to bless my people, the power of my thought provides and transmits my blessings anywhere I send them.

“My book tells mankind that my thoughts are not as his are: his are vanity and evil and against Me. They come from the mind of unsaved man. There is no power in such thinking. To me it is an abomination.

“Because I am the righteousness of God, My thoughts are precious and unlimited. Just as this paradise is far above the Earth, so my thoughts are of peace and of goodwill toward men. My power sheds my love on them!

“When I created something new, I did not need evolution! I AM THE WORD. I am all that my Father needed to form, all that is seen from things not seen! Satan detests me and everything I created, so he used a theory intended to blaspheme my power: a lie and deception. He still does. There is no truth in him anyway. He knows better: he was among the first and highest creations, but he fell through his overwhelming pride to an eventual eternity in hell which was prepared for the punishment of him and his worshippers.

“My son, your mind in paradise works with the power of mind. I give that very special privilege to all the children of God!”

Jesus changed the subject: “You were amazed at the gold in the flowers. I enjoyed watching you discover that heavenly things are of a material unlike the dust of the Earth. Our gold is pure and transparent and eternal. My light shines through it. I created it that way as a gift to my Father! It bespeaks his perfection.”

Jesus hastened to explain more. “You were wondering about those ‘dry’ stems. My book would have told you that because of sin. Satan lied and did deceive Eve, and then Adam, into sinning against their Creator-God. In heaven, which includes paradise, there are no gases such as hydrogen and oxygen from which I made water on Earth. On Earth it is essential to maintain life. It is a substitute for what we have here, LIVING WATER! Earthly water has become polluted. Living water is always pure. It flows from my throne. One drop can last for eternity. Remember? I told the woman at the well that she should ask of me a drop of that living water. She was so excited that she sent a crowd of her friends running to meet me!

“Earth’s water has been so dirtied by man that I will someday have to destroy all of it, and remake the old Earth with a new one without even a sea!

“My son, you know that everything in all of heaven is sustained by MY LIVING WATER. Your flowers are one example which I let you discover so that you would ask me for an answer. Your flowers are watered from my throne through my Spirit. You noted the absence of any fallen leaves. My living water prevents leaves from dying; it does not evaporate! All forms of life here is maintained by my light and my living water. Both are pure and eternal. I told you in my book about these leaves: they are for the healing of the nations! And I told you that I would be the light of heaven, and no curse can exist in my light!

“At the time of creation, we ordered each life form to multiply ‘after its own kind,’ including new mankind. We made them male and female so that their union in procreation would mirror the bond of loving unity which exists between the Father in heaven and his family on Earth. That is my Father’s greatest love! He even had me shed my blood and die in order to re-establish that relationship as an eternal gift!

“My son, the time is coming when Satan will be bound in a bottomless pit for a thousand years awaiting his banishment into eternal punishment in a lake of fire! His reign of terror on the Earth will have ended. No longer will he be allowed to corrupt the minds and families of man. His worldwide rule over the nations will have been suddenly ended. I will rule instead! As I told you in my book, with Satan gone I will create a new heaven and Earth and a new city, Jerusalem. My peace and grace will abound (instead of every kind of sin and hate as have existed on Earth since Babylon because man chose to worship the devil). The whole universe will then be set free to worship the righteous God.”

Five years after this conversation with me, Jesus re-appeared to me in Lazarus’ tomb with an amazing command: “Go tell them what I explained to you in paradise when I let you die for a while!” [1]

[1] Note: This was a mystical experience Dr. Eby had while on tour in Israel while he was inside of Lazarus’ tomb.

I have been attempting to speak and write words ever since of that fantastic moment, but no human language is at all adequate. However, I pray that some words here have been meaningful to someone. Jesus promised that he would see to that! (This is his story too.)

4. A Detailed Description of Dr. Eby’s Spirit Body

Suddenly, as the risen Lord paused in his explanation of future glories in a righteous universe, I realized that the new body I had in this paradise had not once signaled its presence to my mind. I had been oblivious of its existence while Jesus was talking. And yet it was “me”, and vitally alive. This raised another question.

These events in paradise had occurred with such lightning-like speed that I had not inspected my totally comfortable new body. It was unbelievable, as was everything else up there!

I was recognizable as “me.” My shape, size, and appearance would indicate that I had been changed suddenly into an unmarred, unscarred, weightless “me.” This was Dick Eby in some new form! My amazement grew with each part that I inspected. Never had I seen anything like it. Was I “in” a new body, or was I “the” new body? I could not tell.”

To this day I do not know; neither did St. Paul who sagely described his similar experiences as “unutterable,” not knowing whether he was “in or out of the body.” He said that it was “celestial.”

Its material fascinated me. Obviously of a substance peculiar to heaven, it was modestly glowing, transparent to the direct gaze, yet semi-solid at times. Looking down at my feet, I was shocked to see myself not touching the solid ground, although I had felt a thud when I had suddenly arrived there. I hung gracefully above the lush grasses of this meadow. I noted stemmed flowers with glowing white petals standing quietly within my legs up to the kneecaps. I saw no muscles nor nerves, no vessels nor bones, just that homogeneous glass-like “spirit-matter”! Obviously these flowers ignored my presence, just as I did not feel theirs. Reflexly, I feared lest I had damaged these heavenly flowers by landing upon them; I would lift my right leg off them. Before finishing my thought, the leg was raised, and the flowers remained motionless and perfect. I gasped. My thought had lifted the leg as it was being simultaneously “processed.”

I heard myself think: “That’s exciting; I will lower my leg back over the flowers and see what happens.”

Nothing was felt; not a petal moved within my leg. It was amazing.

The ecstasy of being “free indeed” in a new place and a new body made me feel like a spirited calf loosed from a stall. I decided to run around my paradise and learn more about it and me. At the thought, I was running without touching the ground. Although my legs were in motion, my speed changed with my thoughts. I came to a tree and passed throughout it without feeling anything. I kicked my feet through the grasses, bushes, and bed of flowers; nothing was disturbed. They simply passed through my legs with no resistance. I was rapidly learning that a “spirit body” and this heavenly vegetation are not of any earthly substance.

I stopped running to inspect my own body more closely. It was homogeneous. As I gazed through it I was surprised to see no organs. It apparently functioned without members of differing secretions and excretions! It was immediately logical to me that in heaven there is no need for a body to ingest, digest, transform, reform, nor to “process” foods or waste! In heaven there is no polluted water nor air nor chemical to attack the spirit body. There is not even an unclean thought to be rejected!

This new spirit body had no restrictions imposed by an outer or inner environment of solids, gases, or waste. What excitement! I was enjoying dashing effortlessly around the huge valley floor of flowering meadows, and up the mountainsides to the stately, symmetrical “cedars of Lebanon” (as my mind was silently naming them).

I tried to cast my shadow across the underlying fields as I swooped along. Everything was so brightly lit. It seemed abnormal not to see shadows so I flailed my arms: nothing. The light of heaven was coming from no one source, but was emitted everywhere in appropriate colors. Each bit of vegetation seemed to contain a light source of its own. So did I.

Reflexly I raised my arms in thanks and adoration for my Lord’s love in showing me heaven’s wonders which were mysteries to me. As I bowed my head, I noted a glowing pure-white gown which somehow I had not seen when I looked through it in search of organs! I was awed by its total weightlessness and silky softness. My raised arms had parted its overlapping folds for the moment, revealing me as a neuter (i.e. no sex organs)! This came as a shock, although I had not felt surprise at the absence of defects or scars. This alteration was so unexpected!

“Lord Jesus, why am I now a neuter? I was a man.”

Jesus replied: “Yes, Dick, you were always a man, a child of God who returned our love by telling others of the good news about me. Remember? You read in my book the very first order I gave to Adam and Eve? ‘Be fruitful and multiply!’ I told them to replenish the Earth, not heaven. Again I told the Sadducees (who did not believe in a resurrection) that they ‘knew not the scriptures’ when they speculated about wives in heaven. I explained that after the resurrection all would be like angels who do not marry nor raise families. Everything in heaven is created or re-created into perfection! It is all in my book. None other is truth!

“In fact, everything that my children need to know about how God thinks and works and judges and rewards, either before or after the cross, is already in my book. That is why I commanded mankind to ‘engrave my words upon their hearts,’ and to pass them along from generation to generation. I wanted everyone to hear and know just who I AM, the Messiah, their one hope of salvation, their most high God.”

I checked my body again: truly celestial! Its senses were too keen to describe.

Weightless, painless, instantly responsive. Comfortable and totally peaceful. Unaware of any disharmony elsewhere. Thinking with the mind of Christ. Sensing that I was IN him somehow.

He had said so clearly: “I and the Father are one.”

He had prayed so fervently: “… that they all may be one, as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee; that they may be also one in us!,” the Father declared it done!”

5. A Detailed Description of the Heaven Dr. Eby Experienced

The very contemplation of experiencing this fulfillment of being in paradise with the risen Jesus was unutterable. To know that I, in this spirit body, was actually in some glorious sense in him for eternity staggered even the imagination of my new mind. It was so obvious that Dick Eby had not of himself merited any such glory.

Events in paradise were occurring unbelievable fast. Thoughts and actions there seemingly vie with each other to be completed instantly. The environment of heaven with its timelessness, weightlessness, and lack of all earthly confusion and stress results in a type of “joy” unattainable in this world system. I simply stood (floated) quietly, peacefully, entranced in an experience which only a living, loving God could have arranged for his followers!

Jesus all this time seemed to be a component of myself, of my spirit body and of my mind. He must have been amused at my near-delirious joy while inspecting the place he had prepared for my pleasure.

“My son, you seem to be enjoying the freedoms of heaven! You looked surprised especially over your spirit body which is so different from your former one. That is one reason that I had allowed it to die so that I could reveal to you another truth which my book contains. You now know that my book is true when I promise complete healing as part of salvaging my sheep from sin. I had to prepare an incorruptible body to replace the fleshly one that had been cursed ever since Adam disobeyed me in the garden.

“In order not to break my own verdict, I had to sentence Adam’s seed to ‘surely die’ because he followed Satan’s advice. I had to leave the seeds of death in his flesh. My book says that I can and will mend man’s body when it will result in glory to my Father; but I do not give ‘divine’ health to the carnal body: only to the spirit or resurrection form. Death of the dust-body (not the human spirit) is still a divine decree. Only through rebirth of the spirit in a new creation (which will transform man completely) can an incorruptible body be attained, fit for eternal existence in and with me! I made that fact so clear by dying and arising in my new body! I was the example. I told my disciples that they would follow me in that newness of life. A few understood finally, after seeing me ascend to heaven!

“My Father empowered me to act as ‘a quickening Spirit’ in order to raise the dead, in body and spirit. Remember? I told that secret to Mary and Martha: ‘I am the resurrection and the life!’ Then I demonstrated how my Father had given power to me (for his purpose) when needed. They watched, and they believed! YOU are here now because I passed you from death unto life!”

Already this paradise of marvels had supplied enough wonders! Any earthly dreams about “heavenly mansions” had been corrected and surpassed. No memories of Earth remained with me except the ones which Jesus was obviously implanting in my new mind in order to understand what he had to tell me. His mind-to-mind conversation from within me was unbelievable precise as to meaning, and as fast as lightning. What a teacher!

I just stood still, surveying the peace-filled valley, quiet except for the background music that flowed through and around everything. The brilliant light of heaven filled the “sky” without hurting the eyes of my “spirit body.” No sense of fatigue or need for sleep existed in this body. There was no “time”, no “daylight” savings! No hurry, hurry.

Then I noticed something amazingly delightful: I was bathed in a delicate perfume, totally “heavenly!” I had been smelling it all along, but was too excited to stop and sniff its absolute loveliness. It seemed to permeate the landscape and me. I imagined that whatever it was, it was certainly fit only for a king!

“Jesus,” I exclaimed, “What is this perfume? Do angels use it? Where does it come from?”

Silence. I repeated the query. Still no answer. Perhaps the Lord would answer later? (He did! But not in heaven).

Hearing no answer, I turned my gaze toward the far end of my valley. Again I gasped at its grandeur. Tall rolling hills stretched into the distant sky, skirted at their feet with green meadows trimmed in white and gold flowers. My mind was reminding me of Jesus’ comment about “lilies of the field” whose adornment surpassed the elegance of Solomon.

I was peacefully examining a cluster of intriguingly lovely lilies (kind unknown to me) when an unexpected strangeness suddenly seemed to crush me.

(I had been enjoying my paradise all this time; the reality of being “at home” had become a normal situation which can best be described as an immersion into total peace, unending and perfect!)

It was as though a subtle “change in plans” had now occurred: my perfect peace seemed to “crack.” An unexplained restlessness crept into me, and a memory formed in my mind for the first time: Where is Maybelle, my loving, lovely wife on Earth? We were so close that she must have died too. She must be up here in her very own paradise. I must find her and take her a bouquet of these lovely flowers. She would so enjoy them. Where do I find her? I feel so lonesome.

6. Dr. Eby Returns to His Physical Body

I looked away from the flowers at my feet, just as a narrow path suddenly parted the lush grass, as if a rushing blade had mowed a strip from my feet to the far end of the valley. Just as suddenly we both were running along (but just above) this pathway. I shouted to Jesus: “What is happening? Where am I headed? Why do I suddenly remember my Maybelle? I must find her!”

Jesus replied: “My son, fear not! You remembered about her because I put it upon your mind that she was part of you. I wanted you to understand why my Father and I made marriage something very special. I wrote in my book a warning: ‘Let no man put asunder what God has united!’ We were planning the earthly family to be as close-knit as is our heavenly family, like a mirror-image!”

Just then I noted that our speed along the path was rapidly accelerating, and that a curve to the right was visible far ahead where the path disappeared into a pass.

“You are feeling ‘incomplete’ all at once because your other half is ‘missing’. We made the two of you one! I want you to experience something right now in paradise with me which you could not sense elsewhere! I am letting you feel ‘intense hurt’, the hurt of lonesomeness, such as I have felt from being separated from my earthly people for so long! Remember? I told Adam that it is not good to be alone as a man! Since he was made in our image, the same applies to God.

“We chose a family once: We espoused Israel and Judah as the wife of Jehovah. She and we would walk and work together to bring down the idol worship of Satan’s nations who rejected their Creator.

“But our wife Israel chased after other gods, and played the whore and ‘slept’ with Satan. Jehovah (who includes me) had to obey his own laws, so we gave her a bill of divorcement. We had to chasten her until she would repent: otherwise we would be breaking our own rules! Since then she has not yet repented, and is still wandering like lost sheep.

“I am lonesome for my people to come home to me. I even came to Earth to win them back, but they said ‘Away with him! Crucify him!’ I left them a promise that I still love them. After all I even died for them. I promised that I would restore my divorcee and would wash her filthy rags of whoredom white as snow. I would make her my new bride adorned in a pure white wedding gown with jewels. As a wedding present I would reestablish her nation on Earth to be a blessing once again (instead of the stumbling stone). I must be her king on David’s throne! And soon!

“The Father and I have felt so neglected all these centuries without the love we sought to enjoy with our family. Can you now imagine how we hurt as I await my body and my Father waits to remarry a penitent wife as our new bride? I am letting you feel that sense of separation!”

Only the rush of our speed could have turned my attention away from Jesus’ profound statements. The bend in the path was approaching in the distance, so Jesus hastened to finish his lesson in marriage:

“My son, the most important earthly gift meant to reflect the inseparable bond of love which unites us with our sheep in our fold! We become ONE with them, just as we intend marriage to make one out of two on Earth! That is what happens when a man and his mate let us put them together. I said so in my book which is my love-letter to our family on Earth.

“Oh that my people would turn back now to God! My Father is unwilling that any should perish, but very few listen to us. Their eyes and ears are sealed over by sins which they enjoy. It simply makes our search for the lost ones all the more intense! I have prepared and promised them unsearchable riches in our presence; in fact everything that I have received from the Father I have willed over to them, jointly! I want my body of believers completed very soon, so that the bride can be united in us at the marriage table! I am their lamb. If only my people would call on me, I could answer them now! Do you sense my loneliness? I am ready; why must they tarry?”

I was about to respond when the pathway above which was speeding took a sharp right turn into a narrow valley. As I swooped between its foothills I gasped at a familiar voice that echoed from somewhere far ahead:

“Dick, were are you? Follow my voice. I need you!”

Like a bolt of lightning-speed I was suddenly being shot forward. Her voice became louder and louder. I was being sucked forward as if by a huge vacuum and then, into total blackness and blankness! No voice, no nothing. I had been sent out of paradise. Why?

I would learn later. Plans had been changed! Maybelle had been frantically praying for a miracle: and Jesus had answered!

In God’s planning, my time in paradise had fulfilled what he wanted to accomplish for me there. He had left Maybelle on Earth to accomplish for her another purpose!

It would take many months for us to be shown how the horror of her day of widowhood (with its blood, sirens, and questionings, and waiting, and shocking hopeless reports) could possibly be “to the glory of God!” The numbing sudden loss of her loved one had initially erased from her mind the details which require immediate answers at such a time of accident. So she prayed:

“Help me, Jesus! I don’t know what to do!”

And then it happened.

[Dr. Richard Eby’s NDE ends here.]

Categories
Articles Science

Religious Interpretations of Near-Death Experiences

Dr. David San Filippo is a licensed mental health counselor, a certified disability management specialist, and a certified cognitive behavioral specialist who has been working in human services for more than 25 years. His counseling and consulting service specializes in helping adults overcome issues related to personal development, trauma, grief, and vocational rehabilitation. His intellectual properties company deals with human and artificial intelligence by combining the collective knowledge of human intelligence and dynamics with modern computer technology to produce software products designed to enhance people’s personal and work lives. His educational products consist of the workshops and seminars that Dr. San Filippo offers for human growth and development. His website contains a library section which is an outstanding resource for general research in human science in the areas of philosophy, psychology, sociology and theology.

Table of Contents

  1. Abstract
  2. Introduction
  3. Near-Death Experiences
  4. The Phenomenology of the Near-Death Experience
  5. Models of Near-Death Experiences
  6. Transpersonal and Reductionist Theories Concerning Near-Death Experiences
  7. Out-of-Body Experiences
  8. Children and Near-Death Experiences
  9. Attitudinal and Personality Changes Following Near-Death Experiences
  10. Religious Beliefs Concerning Death, Afterlife, and Near-Death Experiences
  11. Agnostics and Atheists
  12. Buddhism and Hinduism
  13. Islam
  14. Judaism
  15. Christianity
  16. Mormonism
  17. Conclusion
  18. References

1. Abstract

Interpretations of near-death experiences are influenced by religious and psychosocial teachings about death and afterlife beliefs. Different religious beliefs have resulted in the formation of numerous religious groups who have fostered their own interpretations of death, afterlife, and the immediate transition period between life and afterlife. This essay provides an overview of reductionist theories and for the plausibility of transpersonal theories of near-death experiences. The essay then provides an overview of the human consciousness of what seems to be life after death, religious beliefs concerning death and afterlife, and interpretations of near-death experiences by different religious groups. This essay contends that religious interpretations combined with the contemporary work on near-death experiences and the arguments against reductionism provide grounds for the plausibility of the transpersonal theories concerning near-death experiences.

2. Introduction

A near-death experience is a conscious experience in which the individual experiences a sense of being detached from the physical world during the process of physiological dying. Individuals may experience their own physiological dyings and deaths and at the same time become aware of their disembodied existences in an altered state where they may experience a sense of peace, a separation of consciousness from the body, entering darkness, seeing a light, meeting spiritual entities, having a panoramic life review, and a sense of judging their lives (Moody, 1975; Morse, 1990, Ring, 1980). Near-death experiencers are generally positively affected by their experiences and their confrontation with death seems to give more meaning to the individual’s life (Kalish, 1981). Near-death experiences could be considered “transpersonal” experiences due to their nature of transcending the usual “personal” physical and mental realms of human consciousness. Transpersonal experiences are those incidents that are of the highest or ultimate human potential and beyond the ego or personal self (Lajoie & Shapiro, 1992, p. 90).

In order to evaluate near-death experiences effectively, it is necessary to have an understanding of personal beliefs concerning life after death. According to Kellehear & Irwin (1990), the interpretation of the near-death experience may be related to the social conditioning and beliefs of the experiencer, such as interpreting the experience in relationship to the experiencer’s religious beliefs concerning life after death.

Numerous surveys have documented that the majority of people in the United States believe in life after death (Kalish, 1981; Kellehear & Irwin, 1990; Klenow & Bolin, 1989, Rodabough, 1985). Psychologist Charles Tart (1991), in his article, “Altered States of Consciousness and the Possibility of Survival of Death“, discusses his belief that humans regain some type of consciousness after death. He states:

“The direct experience of existing and experiencing in some form that seems partially or fully independent of the physical body is relatively common in various altered states of consciousness, and this kind of experience constitutes the most direct knowledge of survival an individual may have” (p. 37).

Past-life researcher Brian Weiss (1988) reports there are experiences of what seems to be life after death, as reported by many of his subjects, and that the different experiences and concepts of the subject’s lifetime, involving religion and death, can influence the individual’s understanding of death and afterlife.

Religions involve group practices of similar religious beliefs. An individual’s personal religious beliefs are experienced within the individual’s consciousness and may be related to others through various religious practices. Through social participation individual beliefs may be formed and heightened. Religious beliefs may both provide explanations for unexplained phenomena and communicate the essence of human transpersonal experiences.

Interpretations of near-death experiences can be influenced by religious beliefs in life after death. The effects of religious diversity may not only influence the interpretations of near-death experiences but also may account for some of the differences in the descriptions of encounters with incorporeal entities, the setting of the experience, and in the activities reported during the experience. Religious beliefs can provide references to explain the “difficult to explain” experiences associated with a near-death experience (Foos-Graber, 1989; Kubler-Ross, 1991; Moody, 1975, 1977, 1988; Ring, 1980, 1982). Most reported near-death experiences appear to support many philosophical and religious theories of what is anticipated in life after death such as communion with incorporeal beings and the existence of afterlife polar planes of good and bad, heaven and hell.

It is the intention of this essay to provide a review of the near-death experience phenomenon and the beliefs in life after death of some religious denominations who have reported near-death experiences, as well as their interpretations of these experiences. The essay will conclude that these religious interpretations, combined with contemporary near-death research, and arguments against reductionist interpretations provide grounds for the plausibility of transpersonal theories concerning near-death experiences.

3. Near-Death Experiences

Near-death experiences appear to be a universal phenomena that has been reported for centuries. A near-death encounter is defined as an event in which the individual could very easily die or be killed, or may have already been considered clinically dead, but nonetheless survives, and continue his or her physical life (Moody, 1977, p.124). Reports of near-death experiences date back to the Ice Age. There are cave paintings, in France and Spain, depicting possible after life scenes that are similar to reported scenes related to near-death experiences (Zaleski, 1987). Plato’s Republic presents the story of a near-death experience of a Greek soldier named Er. In this account, the soldier is killed in battle and his body is placed on a funeral pyre. Just before he is to be cremated, he awakens and tells a story of leaving his body and traveling with others to a place where they were all to be judged (Plato, 1928). Historical figures such as Carl Jung, Thomas Edison, and Ernest Hemingway have also reported their own near-death experiences (Jung, 1961; Moody, 1977, Zaleski, 1987). Modern researchers, such as Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Raymond Moody, Kenneth Ring, and Melvin Morse, have provided modern accounts of near-death experiences. Through their research, they have been able to provide phenomenological evidence regarding these experiences as altered states of consciousness, and qualitatively demonstrated that the great similarities between the different reports of these experiences are not a result of chance or accident.

According to a 1991 Gallup Poll estimate, 13 million Americans, 5% of the population, reported they have had a near-death experience (Greyson, 1992). Research has demonstrated that near-death experiences are no more likely to affect the devoutly religious than the agnostic or atheist. Near-death experiences can be experienced by anyone (Moody, 1975, 1977, 1980, Morse, 1990; Ring, 1980, 1985). According to Talbot (1991), near-death experiences appear to have no relationship to “a person’s age, sex, marital status, race, religion and/or spiritual beliefs, social class, educational level, income, frequency of church attendance, size of home community, or area of residence” (p. 240).

Near-death experiences have been recorded in folklore, religious, and social writings throughout the world. Reports have been recorded from societies such as Native American, Tibet, Japan, Melanesia, Micronesia, Egypt, China, India, Africa, Australia, Europe, and the United States (Greyson, 1992; Mauro, 1992). According to Ring (1980), there does not appear to be any relationship between, on one hand, an individual’s spirituality and religious practices, and on the other hand, the likelihood of experiencing a near-death experience or the depth of the ensuing experience.

4. The Phenomenology of the Near-Death Experience

Near-death experiencer consistently report similar experiences. According to Talbot (1991), “One of the most interesting aspects of the ND phenomenon is the consistency one finds from experience to experience” (p. 240). Although most near-death experiencers may not experience all of the traits associated with near-death experiences or in the same order, experiencers consistently report similar experiences. The following is a constructed description of the content of a near-death experience representing most of the major traits:

At the onset of the near-death experience, the individual may experience a sense of being dead, and surprise at being dead, yet will remain peaceful and have no feelings of pain. Following the peaceful awareness of being dead, the experiencer may have an out-of-body experience, a perception of separating from the physical body and moving away from the deceased body. The individual may experience a sense of moving through a tunnel, during the stage of entering into the darkness. As the individual passes through the tunnel, there may be an awareness of a bright light towards the end of the tunnel. While experiencing the consciousness of the light, ethereal forms recognizable by the experiencer may be seen in the light. In the later part of the near-death experience, the individual may sense he or she is rising rapidly towards the light into what he or she may consider heaven or another plane of consciousness. During this ascension, the experiencer may encounter a Being of Light reported to be either God, another spiritual deity, or an energy form recognized by non-theists. The encounter with the Being of Light engulfs the experiencer with a sense of unconditional love emanating from the Being. During this encounter, the near-death experiencer may become conscious of having a total panoramic review of his or her life and may experience a sense of self-judgment when observing his or her life events in review. The judgment is not by the Being of Light but is a personal judgment by the experiencer. Throughout each of the stages, and particularly in the latter stages of the near-death experience, the individual may be reluctant to return to his or her former life.

Although most near-death reports are positive, in that they are pleasurable experiences, there are some reports of negative or “hellish” type experiences. The reports of negative near-death experiences appear to be rare. Of all the reported near-death experiences, a 1982 Gallup poll estimated that less than 1% are considered to be negative, hellish, and frightening experiences. The negative near-death experiences are reported to contain similar traits as positive experiences but are associated with a sense of extreme fear, panic or anger, a sense of helplessness, and possible visions of demonic creatures (Moody, 1988, p.25, 27; Staff, 1992 p. 1-2; Horacek, 1992, p. 3).

Many individuals who have experienced a near-death experience claim a fuller understanding of their religious or spiritual insights and their impact on their lives (Moody, 1988; Peay, 1991; Ring, 1985). They report feeling closer to God after their near-death experience. Ring (1980) comments:

“The way in which post-incident religiousness reveals itself among core experiencers is primarily in terms of an inward sense of religion: They feel closer to God, are more prayerful, are less concerned with organized religion and formal ritual, and express a sense of religious tolerance and religious universalism. It isn’t clear that their belief in God per se grows stronger, although it is clear their religious feeling does. Following their incident, they are significantly more inclined then non-experiencers to be convinced there is life after death” (p.173).

The effect of this spiritual awakening on the experiencer is a more positive attitude towards life, a lack of fear of dying, and a sense of service towards others (Moody, 1977, 1980, 1988; Ring, 1980, 1985).

5. Models of Near-Death Experiences

The phenomenology of the near-death experience can be described by reporting the various stages of the experience, the characteristics or traits of the experience – which occur during various stages of the experience, by the constellations or related conscious experiences associated with near-death experiences, or by the experiential grouping of stages, traits, or constellations of the experiences. Experiencers may experience some or all of these stages, traits, consciousness, and types. The stages of near-death experiences relate to the experiencer’s sense of progression towards a destination. The traits are associated with a sense of consciousness or knowledge concerning the activities within the near-death experience. Noyes and Slymen (1978-79) and Sabom (1977) further categorize the stages and traits of near-death experiencers into constellations and group types to analyze further the phenomenology of the near-death experience. The statistical analysis of the data presented in the Ring (1980, 1985), Evergreen (Lindley, 1981), and Noyes and Slymen (1978-79) studies, and the research of Sabom (1977) demonstrate the consistency of these models of classification of near-death experiences.

Kenneth Ring (1980) has devised a model of the stages of near-death experiences recognized by near-death experiencers. The stages are:

Stages of the Near-Death Experience

  1. A sense of peace at the time of death.
  2. A sense of separation from the body.
  3. A sense of entering into darkness.
  4. Seeing a bright light.
  5. A sense of entering the light

Raymond Moody (1988), identifies nine distinguishing qualities, characteristics or traits that have been associated with near-death experiences and may be perceived within the stages of the near-death experiences identified by the Ring study. The Moody defined near-death experience traits are:

Distinguishing Qualities and Characteristics of the NDE

  1. A sense of being dead.
  2. A sense of peace and painlessness.
  3. A sense of separation from the physical body.
  4. The sense of passing through a tunnel.
  5. A sense of an encounter with recognizable ethereal entities, such as family, friends, angels or religious personages. These spirits may appear to be enveloped in light.
  6. A sense of rising rapidly into the heavens.
  7. A sense of an encounter with a Being of Light which emanates unconditional love. This being has been described as God or Allah.
  8. An experience of a panoramic, total life review and sense of self-judgment about one’s life while bathed in the unconditional love of the Being of Light.
  9. A sense of reluctance to return to the world of the living.
  10. A sense of a compression or absence of time and sensing no restrictions of space but a freedom to go where the experiencer chooses.

According to a study performed by Noyes and Slymen (1978-79), near-death experiences can be classified further into three consciousness constellations of the type of event: (1) mystical, (2) depersonalized, and (3) hyperalert. The mystical type includes a sense of harmony and unity, color or visions, and a feeling of great understanding. Depersonalization relates to the loss of emotion, detachment from the physical body, and an altered sense of the passage of time. The hyperalert constellation refers to the experiencer’s sense that his or her thoughts are sharply defined, vivid, and accelerated.

Sabom (1977) also has divided near-death experiencers into three experiential group types: (1) autoscopic, (2) transcendental, and (3) mixed experiences. The autoscopic experiencers include the individuals who have experienced the sense of leaving their bodies, having out-of-body experiences. The transcendental group include individuals who have a sense of entering into a “spiritual realm”. In the mixed experiences, the near-death experiencer may experience a mixture of autoscopic and transcendental experiences (Moody, 1988). Regardless of the methodology used to classify near-death experiences, the anecdotal nature of the near-death reports are similar and consistent between experiencers (Moody, 1977, 1988; Morse, 1990; Ring, 1980, 1985).

6. Transpersonal and Reductionist Theories Concerning Near-Death Experiences

Near-death researchers Moody (1975, 1977, 1988), Morse (1990), and Ring (1980, 1985) suggest that near-death experiences are related to a state of consciousness, separate from the physical body, which occurs at the time of death. Near-death researchers have collected hundreds of phenomenological descriptions of individual near-death experiences and have statistically correlated the occurrences of the stages and traits associated with these experience. The consistency of near-death experience reports provide support for the theories that these experiences are not a result of hallucinations or mental dysfunctions. Individuals, regardless, of age, race, religion, or national origin have reported similar experiences during a near-death episode. The chi-square method of statistical analysis has been used by near-death researchers to determine if the similarity of events reported during the near-death experience, by experiencer, are a result of chance or are to be expected elements of the near-death experience (Morse, 1990, Ring, 1980, 1985). The chi-square method is a non-parametric statistical test used to determine the statistical significance of the difference between the frequencies of reported outcomes with the expected frequencies of outcomes. In other words, did the events reported in near-death experiences happen by chance or can the events anticipated (Borg & Gall, 1989). The statistical significance of near-death research provides that the similarity in the reports of near-death experiencer do not happen as a result of chance but are consistent phenomena of the near-death experiencers (Morse, 1990; Ring, 1980, 1985, Rodabough, 1985; Sabom & Kreutziger, 1977).

Some theologians, medical practitioners, and psychologists do not believe near-death experiences are paranormal experiences. According to Moody (1988), some theological, medical, and psychological theorists attempt to explain near-death experiences as physical or mental phenomena that has more to do with brain and neurological-biological dysfunctions associated with the dying process.

Researchers such as Sagan (1979) and Siegel (1981) attempt to debunk the near-death experience by stating it is a result of a chemical reaction within the brain during the dying process. They postulate that as the eyes deteriorate following death they produce the bright light reported to be seen during the near-death experience. The tunnel effect and a sensation of being out-of-body is believed to be caused by the chemical reactions in the body during the death process (Moody, 1988, p.178). According to researcher Ronald Siegel (1981), “The descriptions given by dying persons are virtually identical to descriptions given by persons experiencing hallucinations, drug-induced or otherwise,” (p. 65). Carl Sagan (1979) states that some of the near-death experiences can be associated with “a wiring defect in the human neuroanatomy that under certain conditions always leads to the same illusion of astral projection/out-of-body experience,” (p. 47). According to Moody (1988) and Morse (1990), some researchers attempt to explain near-death experiences as the mind’s defense against the fear of dying, that the mind creates positive images of an afterlife in order to control the fear of dying.

Many near-death researchers regard three consistently repeated reports as providing credibility for the transpersonal theories that near-death experiences are the expression of an altered state of consciousness separate from the physical or mental realm of human existence having a profound impact on the experiencer’s life. These reports thus are crucial to cite in responding to the theorists who attempt to debunk the near-death experience as a transpersonal phenomenon. These three factors reported are:

Reports That Provide Credibility for the Transpersonal Theory of the NDE

  1. Consistent reports of out-of-body experiences of individuals who sense they separate from their physical body during the near-death experience and can observe their body and surroundings from a detached position.
  2. The consistent reports of near-death experiences of children are similar to those experiences reported by adults.
  3. The attitudinal and personality changes of the near-death experiencers following their experience (Moody, 1988; Morse, 1990; Ring, 1980, 1985).

The following discussion of out-of-body experiences, children’s near-death experiences, and the post-experience attitudinal and personality changes of near-death experiencers, suggest reasons why the reductionist or debunking theories are implausible.

7. Out-of-Body Experiences

During an out-of-body experience, experiencers report leaving their physical body and viewing their body and other activity from a detached, uninvolved perspective. Upon recovery from the near-death experience, many experiencers recall details of medical procedures being performed on them that they had no prior knowledge of the technique. Some experiencers report traveling to other locations, other than the place where the body may be lying “dead.” The out-of-body experiencer is then able to report things he or she may have seen during the out-of-body experience, and there is no other logical explanation for the source of this knowledge (Eadie, 1992; Moody, 1988; Morse, 1990; Ring, 1980, 1985; Ritchie, 1978; Zaleski, 1987). An example of this experience is a story told by a very near-sighted woman. During her out-of-body experience, she reports that she was first lying on an operating table with the anesthesia machine behind her head. She then became aware that she had detached from her body and was able to see, without difficulty, the equipment identification numbers on the anesthesia machine. These numbers were out of her normal visual range and behind her body’s head. She then floated up to the top of the room and noted how the top of the light fixtures were dirty. After her recovery from her near-death experience, she returned to the operating room and was able to ascertain that the numbers she had seen on the machine were correct and that the light fixtures were in need of cleaning (Ring, 1985, p. 42-43). This experience supports the belief that near-death experiences involve separation from the physical body and mind.

Studying the out-of-body phenomenon leads to doubt about the beliefs of those who attempt to debunk the theory that near-death experiences are transpersonal experiences transcending the physical and mental realm of human consciousness. The knowledge the experiencer gains during the out-of-body experience, in most cases, could not have been learned by any other method other than by a consciousness detached from the physical body (Moody, 1988; Morse, 1990; Ring, 1980, 1985). The ability of experiencers to report things and events they had no prior knowledge of provides for the plausibility that the out-of-body experience is a transpersonal event and not a psychological response to dying.

8. Children and Near-Death Experiences

Young children have reported having near-death experiences. Their reports are similar to adult near-death experiences even though they may not have had time to be enculturated with the same socio-religious beliefs regarding death as adults, or developed a fear of death through their psychological development. Children report having out-of-body experiences, passing through a tunnel, and encountering spiritual forms during their near-death experiences. Of interest are the reports of children who meet spiritual entities that are later identified as deceased relatives whom the child could not have known prior to his or her near-death experience (Moody, 1975, 1988, Morse, 1990).

The accounts of young children’s near-death experiences suggest the unlikeliness of the debunking theory that near-death experiences are the mind’s psychological defense towards dying. Children who have not had time to learn of their mortality do not usually fear dying. According to Frank (1982) and Anthony (1967) children, until between the age of five and seven, consider death to be reversible and generally do not have a fear of dying. They, therefore, do not have a need to create an afterlife experience, such as is experienced in a near-death experience, in order to overcome a fear of dying (Moody, 1988; Morse, 1990). Furthermore, following near-death experiences, children share similar after-effects of the experience as adult experiencers. They grow to have a sense of purpose and direction in their lives, and as they mature, do not develop a fear of dying (Morse, 1990).

9. Attitudinal and Personality Changes Following Near-Death Experiences

According to Wilson (1987), the real importance of the near-death experience is in the after-effects it has on the life of the experiencer. The usual psychological and spiritual after-effects of a near-death experience consist of changes in personality and values and an attitudinal change towards religion and death. There is a heightened sense of appreciation of life, especially of the world of nature and of other people. The near-death experiencer achieves a sense of understanding of what is important to him or her in life and strives to live in accordance with his or her understanding of what is meaningful. Consistently reported after-effects of near-death experiences are the lack of fear of death, an attitude of unconditional love and service towards others, and the desire to seek knowledge (Kalish, 1981, Moody, 1977, 1988; Peay, 1991; Ring, 1980).

According to Ring (1985), many near-death experiences act as a catalyst to a spiritual awakening for the experiencer:

“What is noteworthy … is the particular form this spiritual development takes in many NDErs – i.e., the real significance of the NDE here may not be simply that it promotes spiritual growth as much as the kind of spiritual growth it promotes” (p. 144).

This awakening appears to move the experiencer toward what Ring (1985) calls a “universalistically spiritual orientation” (p. 145). He defines universalistically spiritual orientation as consisting of:

Definition of Universalistic Spiritual Orientation

  1. A tendency to characterize oneself as spiritual rather than religious, per se.
  2. A feeling of being inwardly close to God.
  3. A de-emphasis of the formal aspects of religious life and worship.
  4. A conviction that there is life after death, regardless of religious belief.
  5. An openness to the doctrine of reincarnation (and a general sympathy towards eastern religions).
  6. A belief in the essential underlying unity of all religions.
  7. A desire for a universal religion embracing all humanity (p. 146).

The long-term positive effects the near-death experience has on the experiencer’s life gives evidence for supporting a plausible argument for the transpersonal nature of the near-death experience. This aspect of the near-death experience has not been addressed by reductionist theories in the literature reviewed. The profundity of the after-effects of a near-death experience on the experiencer’s life have not been able to be achieved through pharmacological or psychological methods. Most of the sensory nature of the near-death experience can be induced through drugs or hallucinations but the positive change in the individual’s personality and attitudes do not appear to be capable of replication (Moody, 1988; Morse, 1990; Ring, 1985). Ring (1980) reports these after-effects appear to remain with the individual for the remainder of his or her mortal life.

In the first part of this essay, I have reviewed some of the contemporary near-death research and some of the arguments against the plausibility of the reductionist theories and for the plausibility to transpersonal theories explaining near-death experiences. In the following part of this essay, religious beliefs concerning death, afterlife, and near-death experiences will be discussed. This discussion will provide commentary regarding the similarities between different religious beliefs and experiences concerning death, as well as between religious interpretations of near-death experiences.

10. Religious Beliefs Concerning Death, Afterlife, and Near-Death Experiences

Polls and studies support the assumption that the majority of people believe death is not the end of one’s existence but rather a transition from one life to another (Gallup & Castelli, 1989; Kellehear & Irwin, 1990; Klenow & Bolin, 1989). Different religions have provided belief structures supporting the religious and social needs of practitioners. Rituals and sacred writings support the various religious interpretations of what death is and what it will be like in the afterlife. However, even with the differences in religious beliefs, there are similarities between many different religious groups regarding afterlife beliefs. One similarity among religious groups is the belief in an afterlife following physical death. Another similarity is the presence of “the two polar images of life after death – the abode of the righteous, heaven or paradise, and the place for the wicked, or hell” (Grof & Grof, 1980, p. 13). These polar images are also recognized by many near-death experiencers.

According to Hick (1980), a belief in the immortality of the spirit has been present in most religions for centuries. The belief in a life after death is one of the oldest concepts of human history (DeSpelder & Strickland, 1983). Proving the immortality of the human soul has been the objective of many philosophers, theologians, and scientists. Freud (1961) stated:

“Our own death is indeed unimaginable, and whenever we make an attempt to imagine it we can perceive that we really survive as spectators.”

Hence the psychoanalytic school could venture on the assertion that, at bottom, no one believes in his own death. Or to put it in another way, in the unconscious everyone is convinced of his or her own immortality (p. 154). Many beliefs in life after death have concerned a non-physical transition into a serene spiritual world with encounters of other deceased people and possible religious figures. There may be a judgment or accounting of one’s life with a final disposition of the individual spirit following the period of judgment or personal assessment.

Near-death experiences and the reports of a consciousness of life after death have been provided by members of Buddhist, Hindu, Islam, Jewish, Christian, and Mormon religions, among others. Agnostics and atheists also have reported near-death experiences even with their predisposed lack of belief in anything greater than personal self and this life. The following are brief commentaries regarding the beliefs concerning death, afterlife, and near-death experiences within these religious and irreligious frameworks.

11. Agnostics and Atheists

Agnostics believe it is impossible to know whether there is a God or life after death. Atheists believe there is no God and no life after death and that death is the cessation of the existence of the individual.

Agnostics and atheists have reported having near-death experiences. These experiences are similar to the reports of individuals who have professed a spiritual belief prior to their near-death experience (Moody, 1977; Rawlings, 1978; Ring, 1985). Agnostics and atheists report achieving an altered state of consciousness in which they have experienced some or all of the traits Moody attributes to a near-death experience. Most agnostics and atheists interpret their near-death experiences as a glimpse of life after death (Rawlings,1978; Ring, 1985). Prior to the near-death experience, they did not believe in life after death. As a result of the experience, most agnostic and atheist experiencers eventually move toward a more spiritually guided life with a new found belief in life after death (Rawlings, 1978; Ring, 1985, p. 151). Maurice Rawlings (1978) reported he did not know of any agnostic or atheist individual from his research who, after experiencing a near-death experience, remained convinced of there being no God, no life after death, or nothing else beyond the material existence.

12. Buddhism and Hinduism

Buddhists believe that upon death, there is rebirth to another life. Death is accepted as inevitable and not feared. The believer’s actions in this life will determine his or her level of rebirth. Karma is the force created by the actions of the individual – the effects of actions. Good karma, which is achieved by compassionate actions in this life, leads to a higher existence in the next life. Nirvana is reached by achieving an understanding of the nature of reality. This must be discovered through the experiences of other dimensions of human consciousness (Klein, 1991, p. 103).

According to Buddhist cosmology, numerous, hierarchically arranged heavens exist along with eight hot and cold hells. The individual spirit exists in one of these realms, based upon the karma created in the previous life, until reborn into another life. This cycle continues until the enlightenment of nirvana is achieved (Klein, 1991).

According to Swami Adiswarananda (1991), in the Hindu religion, death comes as a break in the continued events of life and brings about a change in the form in which the spirit resides. Hindus believe the afterlife is a passage of time in a heaven or hell, dependent upon the karma built up in life. The judgment about one’s life is based upon the karma the individual created in his or her past lives. The rebirth of the spirit into the next life, through the transmigration of the soul, is determined by the developed karma and the individual’s last thoughts in the present life. An individual’s search for eternal happiness and immortality results in the rebirth of the spirit in different bodies until the spirit learns that happiness and immortality are not a result of the fulfillment of desires but are attained when all desires and needs are no longer important (Adiswarananda, 1991; Elb, 1906). According to some Hindus, the various religious faiths are “different paths to reach one and the same goal – union with God as ultimate Reality” (Johnson & McGee, 1991).

There are reports of Chinese Buddhists having near-death experiences (Kellehear, Heaven, Gao, 1990). Becker (1981) suggests that near-death experiences may have been responsible for part of the development of Pure Land Buddhism in China. A Hindu report of a near-death experience relates how the experiencer entered into heaven on the back of a cow (Ferris, 1991).

According to Mauro (1992):

“East Indians [Hindus] sometimes see heaven as a giant bureaucracy, and frequently report being sent back because of clerical errors,” whereas Japanese experiencers report seeing symbolic images, such as “long, dark rivers and beautiful flowers” (p. 57).

During the near-death experience, the Buddhist experiencers have reported seeing the personage of Buddha, and Hindu experiencers report seeing Krishna (Rawlings, 1978; Ring, 1980; Talbot, 1991). The difference in Buddhist and Hindu reports of near-death experiences is predominately associated with the afterlife setting and the personages the experiencer reports encountering.

Buddhist and Hindu near-death experiencers may report different interpretations of the specifics of their experiences; however, the experiences are consistent with other stages, traits, constellations, and group types reported by near-death experiencers in other cultures and religions. Some members of the Buddhist and Hindu religions interpret near-death experiences as providing afterlife visions similar to visions ascribed to some Eastern religious experiences associated with death and afterlife. Becker (1984) comments “that ancient Japanese Buddhist meditative and deathbed visions closely parallel modern American near-death and deathbed visions” (p. 51). The Tibetan Book of the Dead (1973) describes the Bardo, the three stages of the transitionary “disembodied state” following death. In the first stage, the departed have visions of the “Blinding Clear Light of Pure Reality.” In the second stage, the departed encounter a succession of “deities.” In the third stage the departed is judged based upon past deeds by the “Dharma Raja, King and Judge of the Dead” (Grof & Grof, 1980). These stages are similar in content to other reported near-death experiences from other religions and cultures. These similarities include a movement through levels – such as passing through a tunnel, visions of pure light, meeting incorporeal beings, powers of astral projections or out-of-body-experience, and a judgment about one’s life (Becker, 1985).

13. Islam

Death, in the Islamic faith, is the cessation of biological life and the resting of the spirit, in the grave, until the Judgment Day. Some Muslims believe “good souls” see visions of God, and the wicked see the hell awaiting them. From the time of death to the time of judgment, Muslims believe the spirit remains in a state of “dreamless sleep,” with the exception of possible visions of eternity (Galloway, 1991; Johnson & McGee, 1991).

Faith in an afterlife is based upon the belief in the oneness of God and the belief in a day of resurrection and judgment for all regardless of religious belief. At that time, the spirit will be judged based upon its deeds in life, and allowed either to enter into Paradise and be with God, be thrown into the Fire for a period of purgation, or condemned to everlasting punishment in the Fire. Most Muslims believe that non-Muslims can reach Paradise only after a period of purgation (Johnson & McGee, 1991; Smith, J. 1991).

Muslims have reported having near-death experiences (Flynn, 1986; Rawlings, 1978). Muslim near-death experiencers report seeing and meeting recognizable spirits (Flynn, 1986; Rawlings, 1978). This conforms with the Islamic tradition that the souls of the faithful, in paradise, welcome the “incoming souls” and with other reports of visions of people awaiting the newly deceased (Holck, 1980; Moody, 1975, 1977; Morse, 1990; Ring, 1985). In Muslim near-death experiences, the Being of Light is identified as Allah, whereas in other religions the light might be identified as God (Ring, 1985).

Some Muslims interpret the near-death experience as a possible glimpse into life after death due to the similarity of the experience with the religious visions of Muhammad and their expectations of life after death (Ring, 1985; Zaleski, 1987). An Islamic myth describes Muhammad’s “Night Journey” as his experience of passing through the realms of the afterlife where he encounters spirits who have died, has a vision of heaven and hell, and communes with Allah (Couliano, 1991; Grof & Grof, 1980, Zaleski, 1987).

14. Judaism

The Jewish religion generally emphasizes the current life, and not life after death. Although Judaism recognizes that the life of the spirit does not end at the point of bodily death, it is the Jew’s responsibility to focus on a meaningful life and not speculate on life after death. According to Elb (1906), the Jewish Bible states that actions taken in the present life will reward the righteous and chastise the wicked. It does not specifically address the concept of an afterlife. Even though the Jewish Bible does not directly address immortality, traditional Jews believe immortality will bring the resurrection of the body and soul, followed by the judgment of the worth of their lives by God. The Reformed Jew believes resurrection involves only the soul. Jews believe they live and die only once (Ponn, 1991).

Since there is no discussion, in the Jewish Bible, of afterlife, there is no official Jewish religious opinion regarding life after death. However, according to Ponn (1991), many Jews believe human souls will be held accountable before God for what has been accomplished in the current life. After death, many Jews believe they will be reunited with family members in heaven. Their belief in God’s caring nature disavows a sadistic punishment in hell. Entrance into heaven is accomplished by righteous living and repentance. Heaven is considered a place where anxiety and pain is ended (Galloway, 1991; Johnson & McGee, 1991).

There have been a number of reported near-death experiences by members of the Jewish faith. Barbara Harris, a practicing Jew, reports having had several near-death experiences since 1975. Harris and Bascom’s (1990) book, Full Circle: The Near-Death Experience and Beyond, is a narrative of Harris’ near-death experiences. Jewish people who had a near-death experience relate similar observations and experiences as the experiences of other religious-spiritual believers. During the near-death experience, individuals report being in the presence of the Being of Light and judging their own lives (Harris & Bascom, 1990). This experience is similar to the Jewish belief that what is important in life is the attending to the responsibilities of living a meaningful, productive life. Many near-death experiencers report being met by family members. These reports are consistent with the Jewish belief that after death they will be reunited with family members in heaven (Galloway, 1991; Johnson & McGee, 1991; Moody, 1975, 1977, 1980; Ring, 1980, 1985).

15. Christianity

Modern Christians are united in their belief that Jesus is the son of God and that there is an afterlife. Upon death, Christians believe they come before God and are judged. According to Smith (1991), “Following death, human life is fully translated into the supernatural domain” (p. 355). Fundamentalists and conservatives interpret the Holy Bible (1952) literally and believe there is a specific heaven and hell and only Christians are admitted to heaven. All others are condemned to hell. Other Christians interpret Biblical scripture more symbolically, taking into consideration the language and culture of the time when the Bible was written. Heaven and hell are viewed as a “condition,” such as happiness or peace, rather than a specific place. Regardless of whether the afterlife beliefs are interpreted conservatively or liberally, the Christian believes he or she dies only once and, after death, the spirit is judged and then exists in an afterlife for eternity (Galloway, 1991; Johnson & McGee, 1991). “It is appointed for men to die once, and after that comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).

Near-death experiences appear to be familiar paranormal occurrences to Christians. Bechtel, Chen, Pierce, & Walker (1992) reported that 98% of the clergy they surveyed were familiar with near-death phenomena and that almost half of them have counseled parishioners who had a near-death experience. As with other religious interpretations of the near-death experience, Christians also report encounters with religious beings such as Jesus, Mary, or angels (Flynn, 1986, Moody, 1977, 1988; Morse, 1990, Ring, 1980, 1985). Experiencers report similar out-of-body experiences, meeting recognizable spiritual entities, movement toward a bright light, and a sense of being in the presence of an energy of “unconditional love” while the experiencer judges his or her life (Moody, 1975, Morse, 1990).

Some Christians refute the near-death experience as being a demonic deception. They believe the entire near-death experience is a trick of Satan to pull believers from the teachings of Christianity and lead them into sin (Harpur, 1992). Other Christians interpret the near-death experience as a glimpse of an after death state that may exist prior to the afterlife judgment by God. Near-death experiences and experiences similar to the altered state of the near-death experiences are recorded in the Holy Bible (1952). These experiences are not reported as being evil or sinful. The scripture writers have recorded visions of bright lights, life reviews, the presence of the unconditional love of God, and visions of heaven and hell from Biblical individuals who have been close to death (Morse, 1990; Rawlings, 1978). In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, 2 Corinthians 12:1-10, Paul records a “vision” he had. This vision resembles the content of a near-death experience. It involved Paul being “taken up to heaven for a visit” and “hear[ing] things so astounding that they are beyond man’s power to describe or put in words.” Near-death experiencers consistently report the difficulty of verbalizing what they experience. The effect of this experience, on Paul, was a personal confirmation and assurance of his work (Hunter, 1985; Living Bible, 1971).

According to Flynn (1986), to many experiencers:

“The near-death experience affirms the uniqueness and centrality and indispensability of Christ, but in a universalistic way that does not negate or diminish the value of other religious traditions…[It will] break through sectarian and other barriers and shine a laser beam of Light on the true essence and meaning of Christ for all people” (p. 80).

Ring (1985) supports Flynn’s comments, in his conclusions regarding the universalistically spiritual orientation of experiencers following near-death experiences. He found that following a near-death experience, the Christian experiencer “gravitated towards a religious world view that may incorporate and yet transcend the traditional Christian perspective” (p. 147).

16. Mormonism

Death in the Mormon religion is not considered to be the end of existence of the individual but the beginning of a new existence as the same person. Mormons believe they have always lived and will always live as the same individual, “never as someone else or in another life-form” (Eyre, 1991, p. 139). Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints are saddened by the death of a loved one but are comforted in the belief that upon death the spirit is united with God in a spirit world, continuing to progress in knowledge, and await the coming of other family members, the resurrection of the physical body, and the final judgment. A belief in an afterlife is an essential part of the faith of the members of the Church of the Latter-day Saints.

In Mormonism, only “sons of perdition” – former believers who betray the church – are destined for eternal punishment. All others are assured at least an entry into a lesser Paradise, called the “telestial kingdom,” where one spends eternity apart from God. The most faithful attain the “celestial kingdom,” where they commune directly with God and eventually may themselves become gods and populate new universes with their own spiritual offspring. The Mormon Church is the only church that has a “safety net.” Any spirit that has not heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ in life will, before Judgment Day, will be given a chance in Paradise to hear it, and if the spirit accepts the teachings, it will receive equal blessings from God (Staff, 1992, p. 74).

The judgment reported by Mormon near-death experiencers is essentially a self-judgment. This self-judgment is similar to the reported life reviews and self-judgment reported in near-death experiences. Experiencers report seeing a panoramic review of their entire life and then judge their own actions while awash in the “unconditional love” of the Being of Light. After the judgment, the spirit dwells with others most like it (Eyre, 1991). As with many other religious groups, Mormon near-death experiencers consistently report meeting with deceased family members, and being in the presence of a being of light which they call God. However, some Mormon near-death experiencers report two events that appears to be uncommon with non-Mormon experiencers. They report they are requested to do something in the world, when they return to life, by the personage(s) they encounter during their experience. They also report receiving religious and other types of instructions from the “other world” beings (Lundahl, 1982).

According to Lundahl (1982), members of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints report a high number of near-death experiences per capita of their religion. The high number of reported near-death experiences is probably due to the social values of the Latter-day Saints which encourages individuals to share their near-death experiences much more openly than most other social groups (p.166). Mormons interpret near-death experiences to be part of their religious beliefs and a glimpse of life after death.

17. Conclusion

In this essay I have discussed the contemporary work on near-death experiences and some of the arguments against the plausibility of reductionist theories and for the plausibility of transpersonal theories of near-death experiences. I have also provided an overview of the human consciousness of life after death, religious beliefs concerning death and afterlife, and interpretations of near-death experiences by different religious groups. I believe the consistency between numerous reports of near-death experiences, regardless of religious beliefs, and the similarity of the near-death experiences to reported religious experiences, provide plausible arguments for the transpersonal theories of this experience.

Throughout history Buddhists and Hindus, Muslims, Jews, Christians, and Mormons have all reported having near-death experiences. These experiences are similar to some of the visions or journeys into the afterlife described in some of the sacred texts of their religions. The descriptions of the near-death experiences by members of these religious groups are believed, by many, to be a glimpse into life after death, and appear to be consistent with each religious group’s interpretation of the afterlife. However, there are some religious leaders who do not believe the experiencer has been indisputably dead and returned to life when he or she reports having a near-death experience. These leaders interpret these experiences as being pre-death visions of a transitory state prior to the individual’s final death and judgment.

Due to the subjective nature of near-death experiences there can be no conclusive proof that these experiences provide visions of life after death: however, the reports of out-of-body experiences, the near-death experiences of children, and the notable changes in the near-death experiencer’s life following his or her experience support the possibility of the validity of this theory (Moody, 1988; Morse, 1990; Ring, 1985). Because of the transpersonal nature of near-death experiences, it is sometimes reported that it is difficult to describe the experience in words. Near-death experiencers report there are no appropriate words to accurately describe their near-death experiences. They therefore interpret the experience using words, phrases, and metaphors reflecting their religious-cultural backgrounds and experiences.

The near-death experiences of individuals of various beliefs are consistent with many religious beliefs concerning life after death and do not compromise the foundations of their religious traditions. The descriptions of the mystical, depersonalization, and hyperalert constellations of near-death experiences and the autoscopic and transcendental grouping of these experiences appear to closely relate to the levels of heightened sense of consciousness associated with some religious rituals. However, the shift from an organized religious practice to a universalistically spiritual orientation may have an effect on the religious practices of some experiencers. Many choose to practice their new sense of universal spirituality within their earlier religions; however, many near-death experiencers move toward a religion more congruent with their new found knowledge, or choose to practice their spirituality through irreligious rituals and practices.

According to Ring (1985) many near-death experiencers attempt to incorporate their new sense of spirituality into their lives. This removes some of the limits of religious parochialism. To many experiencers it becomes less important to be a member of a specific religious group than to practice a more spiritual life not based upon specific religious doctrine. However, some experiencers chose to remain or become active in an organized religion in order to practice their new spirituality. It is therefore important for there to be an openness by religious groups towards individuals who report near-death experiences and not condemnation of the phenomenon as religious heresy.

18. References

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Categories
Research Conclusions Science

Told “You’re Not Ready” and the Near-Death Experience

At some point in every near-death experience, the person returns to life. Otherwise, the person’s body would die and their soul would remain on the Other Side. In such a case, instead of an NDE, the person would experience death. But some people are given a choice as to whether or not to return. For example, they might be asked, “Are you ready?” Some people return because of a desire to finish their earthly mission. Once they return to life, they may say that God permitted them to return because their life’s work or mission was not complete. Such people may also say that returning to life was their choice. This choice to return may have been permitted because it stemmed from some sense of responsibility for others such as a mother’s desire to raise their children. On the other hand, some people are not given the choice to stay in heaven or return to life. After receiving a “taste” of heavenly bliss, experiencers may be told that they must return and therefore are forced to return to life. They may try to resist having to return. They may even beg to not be sent back. They may argue. But all attempts to resist are futile and the experiencer returns to life often bitterly disappointed. Some people are told of a specific task they must accomplish such as building meditation centers, starting an organization or writing a book.

Sometimes the experiencer returns to life instantaneously. Sometimes their return coincides with attempts to resuscitate their body such as with a electrical shock to the heart. Some people report of being pushed or forced back into their body. Some people return automatically for no apparent reason. But experiencers usually return from death convinced of a mission they must complete – a job they must perform for the greater good of humanity.

The experiencer may be given a reason why the must return. Usually, they are told by some heavenly being something like, “It is not your time” or “You are not ready” or “Your mission is not fulfilled” or “Your purpose is not complete” or “Your life is not finished” or “There has been a mistake” or “You must go back” or some variation of these. Such messages received by experiencers begs the following questions: Isn’t it strange that so many people are being told basically the same thing? Why are do many people report being given virtually the same message? If NDEs are just hallucinations, as so many skeptics claim, how can so many people be hallucinating the same message? If NDEs are just hallucinations, then aren’t they “mass hallucinations?” Given the fact that so many people are given this somewhat cryptic message, doesn’t this prove an objectivity to the NDE which cannot be explained by brain chemicals? In other words, suppose a large percentage of people are told something just as cryptic such as “Where’s the beef?” or some variation of this. Doesn’t this show that such messages are not a product of the brain? For many people, including myself, the answer is an obvious “yes.”

This article focuses on the aspect of the NDE where the experiencer learns that they must return to life.

Table of Contents

  1. Being Told “It Is Not Your Time”
  2. Being Told “You’re Not Ready To Die”
  3. Insights on Being Ready To Die
  4. Being Told “Your Mission Is Not Fulfilled”
  5. Being Told “Your Work on Earth Is Not Complete”
  6. Being Told “Your Life Is Not Yet Finished”
  7. Being Told “It Is Not Your Time To Die”
  8. Being Told “There Has Been A Mistake”
  9. Being Told “You Must Go Back”

1. Being Told “It Is Not Your Time”

After reading so many NDE testimonies on how experiencers are told that they must go back and return to life, one might wonder “Why must they return? Do they have a choice?” The best answer I have ever found to this question appeared In the NDE documentary video entitled Shadows (YouTube video) which is one of the best NDE documentaries I have ever seen. One of the experiencers in the video is named Cindy Massey and she describes a heart-wrenching conversation she had with Jesus on why she had to return to life. It is obviously very difficult for Cindy to recount this conversation with others. The following is the verbatim transcript of her recounting her conversation with Jesus.

Cindy: “I want to come home now.”
Jesus: “No, you can’t.”
Cindy: “But I don’t want to stay there anymore. I don’t like it.”
Jesus: “I know that.”
Cindy: “Well, I just want to come home. They are very mean down there. I don’t like it.”
Jesus: “I grieve for you and what they’ve done to you. And I grieve for what they do to each other. I grieve deeply. I hurt for you and for all of you. You have to go back. You have to return.”
Cindy: “Why?”
Jesus: “Because you promised me.”
Cindy: “But I can do it another time and another place.”
Jesus: “There is no other time. There is no other place. You must do it this time. You promised.”
Cindy: “Well, you don’t understand.” Cindy states that when see looked into Jesus’ eyes, she knew he did.
Jesus: “You promised me, child, it would be this time. You must return but I promise you I will be back when it is time for you to go.”
Cindy: “I don’t know what I am supposed to do.”
Jesus: “You’ll know. You’ll know when it’s time and you’ll know what to do.'” (Cindy Massey)

Betty Eadie wrote: “Gently, he (Jesus) opened his arms and let me stand back far enough to look into his eyes, and he said, ‘Your death was premature, it is not yet your time.’ No words ever spoken have penetrated me more than these. Until then, I had felt no purpose in life; I had simply ambled along looking for love and goodness but never really knowing if my actions were right. Now, within his works, I felt a mission, a purpose; I didn’t know what it was, but I knew that my life on Earth had not been meaningless. It was not yet my time. My time would come when my mission, my purpose, my meaning in this life was accomplished. I had a reason for existing on Earth. But even though I understood this, my spirit rebelled. Did this mean I would have to go back? I said to him, ‘No, I can never leave you now. He understood what I meant, and his love and acceptance for me never wavered. My thoughts raced on: ‘Is this Jesus, God, the being I feared all my life? He is nothing like what I had thought. He is filled with love.'” (Betty Eadie)

Victor Borras wrote: “And it seemed that I heard this voice from heaven speak to me and say, ‘Well done my son.’ Upon hearing this, I then believed that I had been carried to heaven or before the Almighty God. I was so filled with LOVE and JOY. I was content and NEVER wanted to go back to Earth, ever. But I again heard these words, ‘It is not your time – for you have much fruits to bring to me.’ But I did not want to return back to this Earth. Suddenly I felt myself back on my bed and the cloud had left.” (Victor Borras)

Jeanne Ciampa wrote: “I saw Jesus on the cross taking his last breath. I saw my body in a heap on the ground. I was above. There seemed to be no differentiation of time. It was all one. And then I felt his pain and loneliness as he took his last breath and he said without using words, ‘It is not your time to go’ and BAM I was back in my body wrenching in pain strapped to a board bleeding all over.” (Jeanne Ciampa)

Jean Harmon wrote: “I left the room of heat, noise, and pain and lay upon a bed in this cool blue mist and my ‘uncle’ came in and spoke to me. We spoke telepathically for hours which in real time must have been a very short time and when he rose from my bedside to go I came up out of my body to join him with peace and joy only to be told – No! ‘But I want to go with you, I want to go home!’ I cried. And again he said with such kindness – ‘No, Jesus sent me to tell you, now is not your time.’ When I mentally shrugged and gave up (who was I to deny Jesus) everything came back … the pain, the smells, the heat, the noise and I wept.” (Jean Harmon)

M.L. Gordon wrote: “Now I’ve always told Linda that when I get to heaven, the first thing I want to do is walk the dusty road that Christ walked. As I stood with my hand on the gate, I looked off toward the right, and there was my dusty road. I couldn’t believe it. I could see it right there, just as I always pictured it. I started to turn the lever to open the gate when I heard this voice saying, ‘M.L., go back. It’s not your time.’ I said, ‘But I don’t want to go back!’ And all of the sudden I heard Linda’s voice calling me, saying, ‘M.L., I love you, and I need you.’ ‘Please don’t do this to me,’ I pleaded. ‘Let me go.’ Then there was another voice, coming from beyond the fence saying, ‘No son, it’s time for you to go back.’ And Linda’s daddy said the same thing, ‘Not yet. Linda still needs you.’ I started moving back in the tunnel. It was so black!” (M.L. Gordon)

Robert Coleman wrote: “Two elderly women came. I recognized them as both my grandmothers. They had died some five or six years previously. My father’s mother looked quiet and solemn. My mother’s mother was pleased to see me but, at the gate-keeper’s bidding, was quite firm in her tone. I had to promise solemnly not to try to return. I agreed. ‘Once more, I stood in front of the great dark disk again. As the stars and shapes slowly revolved, a deep voice said slowly, ‘Your time has not yet come.’ Then, once again I was in the long tunnel, feeling the wind against my cheek as I looked away and saw the long wall rushing past me. I awoke prostrate on the floor … I got up and walked thoughtfully across to my bed and sat quietly on it for the remainder of that evening, quietly reflecting on the experience. Echoing in my mind were the faces and voices of the disappointed young people, the revolving disc and the Voice, ‘Your time has not yet come.’ Twelve years later, my young son and daughter were playing one evening and it was time for me to put them to bed. My son turned and looked at me, smiling; my daughter sighed. In the golden twilight I recognized his look and her sigh immediately. They were two of the young people I had seen in my near-death experience.” (Robert Coleman)

Beth Hammond wrote: “I heard a voice say, ‘Be not afraid child. It is not your time. You are not through on Earth. Everything has a purpose and you will have to complete yours before you return. Mankind is doing things the wrong way. Go back and teach humankind that LOVE is what is important. Love one another justly. Help those who cannot help themselves. Teach one another compassion, undying love and respect. My creatures on Earth, large and small, are here for a purpose. They know everything here on Earth. They know everything from the beginning of time till the end of time. They have no fear of death. Mankind needs to learn from my creatures. They are here to teach us what is important in life. If you have no love and respect for my creatures whom you have seen. How can you respect me and love me whom you have not seen? Go back and tell the four corners of the Earth what is truly important, not which religion. You are but the pure in heart. There will be many wars, poverty, storms upon storms to rage the Earth, but will man ever listen? My child go back and tell.’ I awoke gasping for air – screaming for someone to come to me. My daughter said to mom, ‘The air is on 70 degrees. It is cold in here.’ She sped up the ceiling fan a notch.” (Beth Hammond)

Karen Floyd wrote: “Then I saw my Grandmother who had died 15 years earlier of a long and cruel illness and that I had loved very much. She had gangrene in one leg and had to have it amputated. At the time of her death, her illness had really taken a toll on her appearance. But when I saw her she looked radiant. She looked about 35 years old, healthy and had both of her legs! I was SO happy to see her and I wanted to stay with her. I asked her if she was OK and she told me she was fine and then told me I had to go back. She told me, ‘It is not your time. You have many things to do.’ And with that I was slammed back into my body – back was the pain and I felt sad.” (Karen Floyd)

William Harris wrote: “Life here pales in comparison to what awaits us. But I was told, ‘It is not your time!’ … and like a rebellious child I rebuked this and wanted to remain in this realm of ‘completeness’ but found that it was an effort in vain … and I can recall returning to my body like a hand in a glove and bouncing on the floor beneath my hospital bed and up back into my body.” (William Harris)

William Petersen wrote: “I could hear the doctors working on me, saying that they had lost my vital signs. I was on the “All That Jazz” escalator with a long tunnel and a lot of white light. Then I specifically remember a dominant male voice saying, ‘It’s not your time. Get off the escalator. You’ve got shit to do.’ I came to, and got sewed up.” (William Petersen)

Grace wrote: “And I said to him, ‘You must wonder what I’ve been doing, or you must sometimes feel angry with me.’ And he said, ‘No. Here, what goes on in the world has no meaning.’ He said, ‘We’re here to care for you, we’re here to take you on.’ And then there was a sense of drawing back, and I panicked and said, ‘Dad, I don’t want to go!’ He said, ‘You have to go, it’s not your time yet, you must go back. You’re going to have a son, and you’ll have to bring this boy up, bring him up yourself.’ Then Dad told me my marriage was going to break up. (We’d only been married just a year!) And I remember saying, ‘Dad, I don’t want that to happen. I always thought that when I got married, it wouldn’t happen.’ It was a very intense feeling. I said, ‘Dad, I don’t want to go – I want to stay with you. Let me stay with you.’ I was most distressed, I didn’t want to go back. He sent me back.” (Grace)

Vicki Umipeg’s NDE: Immediately, she [Vicki Umipeg] recognizes this Being to be Jesus. He greets her tenderly, while she conveys her excitement to him about her newfound omniscience and her joy at being there with him. Telepathically, he communicates to her, ‘Isn’t it wonderful? Everything is beautiful here, and it fits together. And you’ll find that. But you can’t stay here now. It’s not your time to be here yet and you have to go back.’ Vicki reacts, understandably enough, with extreme disappointment and protests vehemently. ‘No, I want to stay with you.’ But the Being reassures her that she will come back, but for now, she ‘has to go back and learn and teach more about loving and forgiving.’ Still resistant, however, Vicki then learns she also needs to go back to have her children. With that, Vicki, who was then childless but who ‘desperately wanted’ to have children (and who has since given birth to three) becomes almost eager to return and finally consents. However, before Vicki can leave, the Being says to her, in these exact words, ‘But first, watch this.’ And what Vicki then sees is ‘everything from my birth’ in a complete panoramic review of her life, and as she watches, the being gently comments to help her understand the significance of her actions and their repercussions. The last thing Vicki remembers, once the life review has been completed, are the words, ‘You have to leave now.'” (Vicki Umipeg)

Janet wrote: “And the light communicated with words. He said, ‘You’ll now believe in me.’ He also said, ‘I made you a woman, I created you. I know everything about you and I’m now going to send you back, because it’s not your time to come over. You still have your life’s work to do.’ I felt very humble, very much in awe of such love. I could hardly believe that someone could love me so much. At that time I remember asking what my life’s work was, and I was told, ‘You’ll not know at this time but you will be shown.’ And I think I was still asking questions like, ‘When? (laughing) I was always saying, ‘When?’ I was also told to come back and tell my husband and children what had happened. I was to share it with them. I think it was about then that I regained consciousness. I don’t recall coming back. Strangely enough, I only recall waking up a day and a half later, and by that time I was back in the ward.” (Janet)

Patty wrote: “I saw an angel pass me. I was ready go to the light. Suddenly, the voices said, ‘It is not your time. Go back. I’ve got work for you to do.’ I went back. (Patty)

Anne Horne wrote: “I looked forward and saw a lighted tunnel and at the entrance were many people. They saw me coming and alerted the person in charge. This person came floating up to me. He reached me in an instant. I immediately knew him as ‘Uncle.’ I remember thinking, ‘I don’t have an uncle who looks like him.’ He was dressed in khaki pants, a white shirt and a tan sweater vest. He carried a clipboard. I thought, ‘How odd.’ He had floated just a bit in front of my path blocking me from going further. Then he telepathically said, ‘It is not your time.’ In the same manner I told him, ‘I am going home!’ (It was sort of like saying, ‘What are you talking about?’) Seeing how I willed to go forward, he talked to ‘others’ who were somewhere else. They told him to show me something. Then he came up beside me and we both looked down onto the Earth. All over the U.S. and some other countries, there were groups of people, some three, some one person, some many people, etc, at work doing what looked like triage work of mending hearts by putting their hands over the hearts of others. It seemed at times they would roll them into what looked like caves. Once they were healed, they would be wheeled out again and set on their way. Most of the healings worked but some failed. They were working so fast to get as many healed as possible. They also wore white. I asked if they were nurses? ‘No,’ he said. I said almost in disbelief, ‘But there are only thousands of them!’ And then he said, ‘That is all we need.’ They would tip the balance. What they did was all that was necessary to do to accomplish what needed to be done. Then I saw this whole group of people become one consciousness because of something ‘they’ on the Other Side had activated within them. They became ONE. At that moment, ‘they’ were able to send a bolt of pure light into the world through their bodies. It entered through their backs, behind their hearts, and exited through their chest and out into the world and into every nook and cranny of the world. Then the fog of shadows and fear rolled back and a new age of Heaven on Earth came. It wasn’t going to last forever, but it would for many thousands of years. Everything would be different. I looked at him and he said, ‘We need you there.’ Then I remembered it was my ‘contract’ to be there and to do my part. It was my husband’s part to send me over to see this and experience what I was seeing. It was just a role for which he had no bad intentions. It was up to me to remember and not play a victim. With that, I found myself back in my body but there still were no sounds.” (Anne Horne)

“I didn’t feel like I knew anything; yet, there was a place in me that knew everything. I asked Wills if I could stay. He said, ‘It’s not your time yet. There’s been a mistake. You have to go back.'” (Laurelynn Martin)

Satwant Pasricha’s NDE research in India: “The Hindu near-death experiences profiled here are typical of the cases studied in India by researchers Satwant Pasricha and Ian Stevenson. The subject does not view his or her physical body, as do many subjects of western near-death experience cases. Instead the subject is taken in hand by ‘messengers’ and brought before a man or woman who is often described as having a book or papers that he or she consults. A mistake is discovered. The wrong person has been ‘sent for,’ and this person is then brought back by the messengers to his or her terrestrial life; or the subject is ‘pushed down’ and revives. The error supposedly made is often a slight one, as a person of the same given name but a different caste, or someone living in a different but nearby village, should have died and been brought instead of the subject of the near-death experience. In six of their cases, the informants said that another ‘correct’ person (corresponding to the subject’s information from the ‘next world’) did, in fact, die at about the time the subject revived; but the researchers did not verify those deaths. In contrast, subjects of western near-death experiences usually give no reason (in psychological terms) for their recovery; if they do give one they may say that they revived because they decided to return of their own accord, often because of love for living members of their family. Sometimes they are ‘sent back’ by deceased persons who tell them ‘their time has not yet come.’ Indian subjects sometimes report meeting relatives and friends in the ‘other realm’ in which they find themselves, but these persons have nothing to do or say about the prematurity of the subject’s death and a need for him or her to continue living. The idea of prematurity of death, or ‘your time has not yet come,’ occurs in the cases of both cultures; but the persons involved in sending the NDEr ‘back to life’ differ.” (Satwant Pasricha’s NDE research in India)

2. Being Told “You’re Not Ready To Die”

Randy Gehlng ran to his grandfather and felt his strong arms close around him. Grandpa Hansen had been a farmer all of his life in Minnesota. He had died, still a powerful man, when Randy was six. Randy asked his beloved grandfather if he would now be living with him in heaven. “One day,” Grandpa Hansen told him. “But not just yet.” When Randy questioned his grandfather, he told him that he still had things to learn on Earth. “You nearly bought the farm this time, Randy-boy,” Grandpa Hansen said with a chuckle. “But you aren’t ready to cash in your chips yet.” Aero seemed puzzled. “But it seemed to me that I was doing the right thing. The word that I received indicated that now was Randy’s time to return home.” Grandpa Hansen shrugged. “I was told to meet you at the bridge and tell you to take him back home. He’s got some lessons that he hasn’t learned yet – and lots of work that he hasn’t even started to fulfill.” (Randy Gehling)

Dr. Kenneth Ring’s NDE research: A diabetic Mexican woman who speaks no English (Steve is fluent in Spanish) and who, Steve ascertained, was completely unfamiliar with NDEs before her own experience. Here is her story: “Prior to her experience, she had lost the ability to see. Diabetes had taken away her retina, and her heart wasn’t supplying enough circulation to her brain to allow her to speak. She was in very poor shape. They prepared her for surgery. Open-heart surgery on a diabetic woman of sixty-seven is full of risk. The doctors went outside to discuss their strategy. While they were conferring, she saw the wall open up and a brilliant light pour out. A bearded man in white stepped up beside her. He was made of white light. ‘You’re not ready to follow me yet … you’re not prepared. I’m going to give you back your eyesight. You’ll need it to finish your life. And I’m going to heal the heart valve, so you can speak again. You still have a few more things to do. Your grandchildren need you to teach them.’ According to the woman’s account, he placed his hand on her chest, and her eyesight returned. [Later] she sat in a wheel chair, serene, full of confidence, and smiling. Her legs were gone, but her eyes were clear, and she was happy in a calm way. Her cardiologist later told her, ‘Something has happened to change you body. We don’t have an explanation for it. I personally ascribe it to be the will of God. You can go home now. We did nothing.'” (Dr. Kenneth Ring’s NDE research)

Clara wrote: “He led me up through what seemed like a tunnel. I seemed to be walking, but my feet didn’t touch a floor. Suddenly I heard what sounded like a city-sized playground full of kids, laughing and playing. Hearing them calmed me. Another man came to meet us. I didn’t see him either. He asked the one leading me who I was, then he went away. When he returned he told the man with me that I had to go back, that they weren’t ready for me yet.” (Clara)

Dr. Raymond Moody’s NDE research: “At first, when the light came, I wasn’t sure what was happening, but then, it asked, it kind of asked me if I was ready to die. It was like talking to a person, but a person wasn’t there. The light’s what was talking to me, but in a voice. Now, I think that the voice that was talking to me actually realized that I wasn’t ready to die. You know, it was just kind of testing me more than anything else. Yet, from the moment the light spoke to me, I felt really good – secure and loved. The love which came from it is just unimaginable, indescribable. It was a fun person to be with! And it had a sense of humor, too – definitely!” (Dr. Raymond Moody’s NDE research)

3. Insights on Being Ready To Die

Christian Andreason wrote: “There is such tremendous LOVE, PEACE and JOY there that you can think of no other place you would rather be. There is no way to really describe the high Heavens. It has to be experienced by the individual. And all individuals will have this experience when they are ready and it is time for them … Contrary to what many of us were taught in our various religions, ‘Heaven’ is not a reward for good behavior, it is a ‘higher plane of existence’ that awaits those who ready themselves to enter. The only way to enter through the door … is to hold the key of Love.” (Christian Andreason)

“The first city was like first grade. People stayed there until they were ready to go to the next city – your eternal progression, from city to city.” (Cecil)

Jan Price wrote: “Since your arrival here, you have been escorted through several different realms; there are many more, and nothing is restricted. Each person is free to experience fully, and the only governor is the state of the conscious mind. Deeply held beliefs are what come into visible expression here, just as they do on the dimension from which you have just come. Not everyone will have the same experience, for truly we create our own. However, subtle energies gently press on closed, restrictive minds, and like the rosebud’s petals, they slowly open and expand and are soon willing to accept greater understanding. Then they are ready to move from their limited concept of life to the eternal adventure, for there is ever more to know, to do, to be.” (Jan Price)

P.M.H. Atwater wrote: “We stay in heaven (and there are many divisions to this vibratory level) for however long best serves our development. There is a sense of benefit here, as if one has found one’s true home and all is well (what some people call ‘recess,’ or a time of rewards). In heaven, we have the opportunity to assess our progress as a soul, to evaluate pros and cons and outcomes, to remember all truths including that of our real identity. We experience the glory of love and the power of forgiveness. This is not an end point, but, rather, the realization of our purpose in creation’s story, how we fit, and what possibilities for future growth and learning exist. We do not leave until we are ready for our next advancement either in the world of form or beyond it.” (P.M.H. Atwater)

David Oakford wrote: “I thanked this loving being for explaining and showing me what he did. He told me that there was more for him to show me if I was ready to experience it. I told him I was ready. I did not know why I was chosen but I was not about to question why. It just seemed small to me then.” (David Oakford)

Betty Bethards wrote: “Some people may want to hang around their old surroundings on Earth rather than go on to discover for themselves the beauty and wisdom which is offered to them on the other side. This may take a long time, but they are coaxed along slowly. Nothing is forced on a soul, neither attitudes nor understandings. This is why we are always counseled here on Earth never to force our beliefs on another person until one is ready to hear them. The free choice of every individual should be acknowledged … On the other side you see things with a clearer, more objective nature, but you are not given total knowledge because you would not understand it or be ready to use it, any more than while you are here on Earth. We are given knowledge only as we are ready to receive it, whether we are in or out of the body … As you are ready, and as you choose, you will be shown your past lives. If you do not believe in reincarnation it may take a long time before you are able to deal with this. Eventually, you must learn to understand yourself in a continuity of growth over many lifetimes.” (Betty Bethards)

Christian Andreason wrote: “When your time comes … and the Light, the tunnel, Christ or your departed Loved ones come for you to take you home … go with them and go to Heaven! That is where you really belong! Just know that when you Love God or Christ … you will just naturally sense of feel where you need to go in Heaven and arrive in that place automatically.” (Christian Andreason)

Josiane Antonette wrote: “There is much, much work for you. You have to go back and tell them. Life is a precious gift. Each moment is filled with great opportunities. Don’t waste your time on Earth. Spread love and understanding. We will always be with you guiding you, protecting you, awaiting the time when we will be reunited when your work on Earth is over.” (Josiane Antonette)

Kevin Williams wrote: “The NDEr may then receive a telepathic message, ‘It is not yet your time’ or ‘Your mission is not completed’ or ‘You are not ready to die‘ or some variant of this. The decision to return may be voluntary or involuntary. If voluntary, it is usually associated with unfinished responsibilities. (Kevin Williams)

We progress at our own rate to reach the light. If you do things that take you away from the light, then you are perpetuating your time here.” (Dr. Kenneth Ring)

P.M.H. Atwater wrote: “Concerning the transcendent experience (i.e., expansive revelations, alternate realities): Exposure to otherworldly dimensions and scenes beyond the individual’s frame of reference; sometimes includes revelations of greater truths. Seldom personal in content. Usually experienced by those who are ready for a mind-stretching challenge and/or individuals who are more apt to utilize (to whatever degree) the truths that are revealed to them. Incident rate: 2% with child experiencers, 18% with adult experiencers.” (P.M.H. Atwater)

4. Being Told “Your Mission Is Not Fulfilled”

“During this NDE I was ‘told’ I had to come back (from there) because I had a mission.” (Darren Corlett)

Betty Eadie wrote: “Now, within his words, I felt a mission, a purpose; I didn’t know what it was, but I knew that my life on Earth had not been meaningless. It was not yet my time. My time would come when my mission, my purpose, my meaning in this life was accomplished. I had a reason for existing on Earth. But even though I understood this, my spirit rebelled. Did this mean I would have to go back?” (Betty Eadie)

RaNelle Wallace wrote: “‘It’s not just your children, RaNelle. You have things to do – things that aren’t finished yet.’ ‘No, I’m better off here. I don’t want to go through all that.’ I pointed to my body. ‘I refuse. I want to stay here.’ I sensed my grandmother’s awareness that time was growing short. ‘You must go,’ she said. ‘Your mission isn’t complete.’ (RaNelle Wallace)

5. Being Told “Your Work on Earth Is Not Complete”

Eventually realizing he was in heaven, Matthew Dovel, a child with no religious training, stood in the presence of Jesus and immediately understood that his work on Earth was not complete. (Matthew Dovel)

6. Being Told “Your Life Is Not Yet Finished”

Alise wrote: “However, I did not want to come back but I was told that my life had not finished and that I must. I argued and lost. So I reluctantly came back and got into my body and woke up.” (Alise)

Palden Jenkins wrote: “In the inner world, Michael and I were walking hand in hand towards the Pearly Gates. It really was the Pearly Gates! I never knew the Pearly Gates actually existed, but they did – at least, in my experience. The wise guardian of the gate came. He welcomed us and addressed Paul (Mike had changed his name to Paul) in connection with joining the ‘Children of God.’ This wise being said some things to Paul such as, ‘Off you go. Go in through the gates.’ I was about to follow and he said, ‘Stop! You’re not finished yet.’ (Palden Jenkins)

David Oakford wrote: “These Beings knew what I was thinking and I had to tell them I felt I could have done a better job on Gaia. I knew what I had come to Gaia to accomplish and was well on my way to doing that but I knew I was not finished yet. They agreed and told me that I still had many things to do and that I may want to go back and do them. I was told it was understood how difficult it would be for me but it was necessary for the universe for me to finish. They said it may be wise to go back and live my life how I had originally planned it. They said I had set lofty goals for my life on Gaia and the events in my life were achieving the goals I had set. They said I originally came to Gaia to learn and share with others using the gifts I have accumulated over several lifetimes. They said I am needed on Gaia to help souls bring themselves and Gaia back to harmony. They said I have great potential to affect other souls, to help them grow and Gaia is the best place to do that. I was told the events I had experienced thus far were preparing me to make a large contribution to the universe and my experiences were not to be considered personal attacks in any way. I did not want to accept it. I wanted to stay. I told them that. I told them I was tired and wanted to stay because life on Gaia is hard and unforgiving. I felt going back would be dangerous for the universe because I was not advanced enough in my spiritual evolution. They said that was precisely why it would be in my best interest to go back to Gaia. They said I was more advanced than I give myself credit for. They said it was possible for me to stay but I would need to finish my work on Gaia sooner or later. The type of work I was destined for can only be done on Gaia. I could stay if chose to but I would only be prolonging the completion of what I needed to do for this universe. They explained the fastest way to finish my work would be to go back to Gaia as soon as possible.” (David Oakford)

7. Being Told “It Is Not Your Time To Die”

Laurelynn Martin wrote: “I didn’t feel like I knew anything; yet, there was a place in me that knew everything. I asked Wills if I could stay. He said, ‘It’s not your time yet. There’s been a mistake. You have to go back.'” (Laurelynn Martin)

Beth Hammond wrote: “I heard a voice say, ‘Be not afraid child. It is not your time. You are not through on Earth. Everything has a purpose and you will have to complete yours before you return… My creatures on Earth, large and small, are here for a purpose.'” (Beth Hammond)

Vicki Umipeg’s NDE: “Telepathically, he communicates to her. ‘Isn’t it wonderful? Everything is beautiful here, and it fits together. And you’ll find that. But you can’t stay here now. It’s not your time to be here yet and you have to go back.’ Vicki reacts, understandably enough, with extreme disappointment and protests vehemently. ‘No, I want to stay with you.’ But the being reassures her that she will come back, but for now, she ‘has to go back and learn and teach more about loving and forgiving.'” (Vicki Umipeg)

Grace wrote: “And then there was a sense of drawing back, and I panicked and said, ‘Dad, I don’t want to go!’ He said, ‘You have to go, it’s not your time yet, you must go back. You’re going to have a son, and you’ll have to bring this boy up, bring him up yourself.’ Then Dad told me my marriage was going to break up. (We’d only been married just a year!) And I remember saying, ‘Dad, I don’t want that to happen. I always thought that when I got married, it wouldn’t happen.’ It was a very intense feeling. I said, ‘Dad, I don’t want to go – I want to stay with you. Let me stay with you.’ I was most distressed, I didn’t want to go back. He sent me back. He told me that he would be there, he would be there again for me.” (Grace)

Victor Borras wrote: “Upon hearing this, I then believed that I had been carried to heaven or before the Almighty God. I was so filled with LOVE and JOY. I was content and NEVER wanted to go back to Earth, ever. But I again heard these words, ‘It is not your time for you have much fruits to bring to me.’ But I did not want to return back to this Earth. Suddenly I felt myself back on my bed and the cloud had left.” (Victor Borras)

M.L. Gordon wrote: “I started to turn the lever to open the gate when I heard this voice saying, ‘M.L., go back. It’s not your time.’ I said, ‘But I don’t want to go back!’ And all of the sudden I heard Linda’s voice calling me, saying ‘M.L., I love you, and I need you.’ ‘Please don’t do this to me,’ I pleaded. ‘Let me go.’ Then there was another voice, coming from beyond the fence saying, ‘No son, it’s time for you to go back.’ And Linda’s daddy said the same thing, ‘Not yet. Linda still needs you.'” (M.L. Gordon)

Jean Harmon wrote: “We spoke telepathically for hours which in real time must have been a very short time and when he rose from my bedside to go I came up out of my body to join him with peace and joy only to be told – No! ‘But I want to go with you, I want to go home!’ I cried. And again he said with such kindness – ‘No, Jesus sent me to tell you, now is not your time.’ When I mentally shrugged and gave up (who was I to deny Jesus) everything came back……the pain, the smells, the heat, the noise and I wept.” (Jean Harmon)

8. Being Told “There Has Been A Mistake”

Laurelynn Martin wrote: “He kept saying, ‘All is known. You have simply forgotten.’ I didn’t feel like I knew anything; yet, there was a place in me that knew everything. I asked Wills if I could stay. He said, ‘It’s not your time yet. There’s been a mistake. You have to go back.'” (Laurelynn Martin)

“I was totally aware that God was there but I was also aware that it was a mistake I was there and He fixed it very quickly.” (Kathleen Young)

9. Being Told “You Must Go Back”

Liz Dale’s NDE research: “At that moment I asked God, ‘What do you want me to do?’ And the answer that came to me was that I had to go back into my physical body in order to complete certain goals that had already been set into motion.” (Liz Dale’s NDE research)

Lynn wrote: “The light spoke and it said, ‘Lynn, it is not time for you yet. Go back, child.’ I put my hand up to touch the top of the light. I knew then that I had touched the face of God. I told God that I loved him, and I wanted to stay with him. Again the light said, ‘Lynn, go back. It is not time for you. You have work to do for me. Go back.'” (Lynn)

M.L. Gordon wrote: “I started to turn the lever to open the gate when I heard this voice saying, ‘M.L., go back. It’s not your time.‘ I said, ‘But I don’t want to go back!’ And all of the sudden I heard Linda’s voice calling me, saying, ‘M.L., I love you, and I need you.'” (M.L. Gordon)

Categories
Research Conclusions Science

War, Evil and the Near-Death Experience

War exists everywhere in nature. The world is a literal combat zone where the survival of the fittest is law. Viruses invade our bodies and antibodies kill them. We are constantly at war against insects destroying our crops and invade our homes. Because we, as humans, are at the top of the food chain, we slaughter all kinds of plants and animals for food and clothes. Law enforcement is fighting a war against crime and drugs. The federal government declared war on poverty and illiteracy. At times, our country declares war against other countries which threaten our national interests. Hurricanes, earthquakes, and other natural catastrophes unmercifully kills multitudes of people and destroys billions of dollars worth of property. Some day in the future, the world will be in danger of being destroyed by a killer asteroid or comet. Ultimately, the whole universe might end the same way it began – with a violent explosion of unimaginable destruction. This article deals with the problem of “evil” viewed through the prism of NDE research.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. God’s big bomb
  3. The war for the survival of the fittest
  4. Natural born killers
  5. The planet of the apes
  6. Holy war? Smart bombs? Friendly fire? Military intelligence?
  7. The war against death
  8. Learning from war
  9. The armies of heaven
  10. No pain, no gain
  11. The meek will inherit the earth?
  12. Give me liberty or give me death
  13. The perfect love of Adolf Hitler
  14. The perfect teacher Adolf Hitler
  15. The perfect lessons from Adolf Hitler
  16. Apocalypse now
  17. The enemy within
  18. War is hell
  19. Farewell to arms

1. Introduction

In New York City, terrorists flew airplanes into the Twin Towers and killed thousands of innocent people in the name of religion. What should our response be to this? Should we love our enemies – the terrorists – and pray for them in the hope that more of them don’t do it again? Or should we kill them all to prevent them from ever killing our children? In the light of the NDE and unconditional love, should we kill our enemies or should we love them? This is not an easy question for us to answer. Fortunately, we can find some answers by analyzing history, nature, and science in light of the NDE. For sure, what the terrorists did to their victims, they did to themselves and to God. In the West, this dilemma is called the “Problem of Evil“. Why do evil things happen to good people? In the East, it’s the same problem framed differently: the “Problem of Suffering.” Why do good people suffer bad things. This article will attempt to solve these problems.

2. God’s big bomb

NDE testimonies describe an incredibly violent act by God resulted in the creation of the universe and all the acts of violence that followed. An infinitely massive explosion unleashed by God led to unimaginable chaos, destruction and fireballs of incredible proportions. After eons of time, the chaos began to subside and harmony began – the heavenly bodies were born.

“I saw that the Big Bang is only one of an infinite number of Big Bangs creating Universes endlessly and simultaneously. The only images that even come close in human terms would be those created by supercomputers using fractal geometry equations.” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

3. The war for the survival of the fittest

From the very beginning, the survival of the fittest became the struggle for life through domination, submission, killing, and being killed. The evolution of all living things came about through war and aggression. The fight or flight mechanism within animals and humans is a critical component of evolution. Animals and humans kill plants and animals for survival. This is not a moral decision, but a matter of life and death. According to Edgar Cayce, a man who had many out-of-body sojourns, revealed how the human body descended from apes, the human mind was created with the stars, and the human spirit existed before the universe began as the Biblical “fallen angels” who became “imprisoned” in bodies of flesh when the “Sons of God” mated with the “daughters of men” as mentioned in Genesis 6:1-3:

A way became available for souls to enter the earth and experience it as part of their evolutionary – reincarnation cycle. Of the physical forms already existing on earth, a species of anthropoid ape most nearly approached the necessary pattern. Souls descended on these apes – hovering above and about them rather than inhabiting them – and influenced them to move toward a different goal from the simple one they had been pursuing. They came down out of the trees, built fires, made tools, lived in communities, and began to communicate with each other. Eventually they lost their animal look, shed bodily hair, and took on refinements of manner and habit. The evolution of the human body occurred partly through the soul’s influence on the endocrine glands until the ape-man was a three-dimensional objectification of the soul that hovered above it. Then the soul fully descended into the body and earth had a new inhabitant: the homo sapien. (Edgar Cayce)

4. Natural born killers

Evolution and reincarnation has put humans at the top of the food chain. Humans succeeded in conquering the animal kingdom and ruling the planet through violence and killing. Science is beginning to understand how humans are genetically natural born killers. Medical researchers have discovered how people born with dysfunctional frontal cortexes of the brain are highly prone to be serial killers. In our courts of law, criminal defense attorneys have used the criminal defense of “my brain made me kill.” FBI profilers know young, white men are more prone to be serial killers. NDE testimonies show how people chose their disabilities and many other aspects of life before they are born. For example, the Greek philosopher Plato, in his account of the near-death experience of a soldier named Er, wrote how Er observed the reincarnation process where souls must decide their destiny or “fate” before incarnating:

“One of these fates casts before the crowd to be reincarnated a number of earthly destinies from which they may choose to be, for example, a tyrant, an animal, an artist, or, as Odysseus carefully chose, an ordinary citizen who minds his own business.” (Plato)

5. The planet of the apes

The history of humanity is the history of warfare. Modern civilization is the product of a tremendous number of devastating wars and man’s inhumanity to man. History teaches us how humanity in general learns little from history. However, NDE testimonies show how some people are learning from history by traveling back into time during their life review to experience the entire history of the world. Perhaps the reason such near-death experiencers journey through history is to teach us the lessons of history. There is no doubt that many great spiritual insights are being learned from NDEs. One such time traveler was George Rodonaia:

“I went back and lived in the minds of Jesus and his disciples. I heard their conversations, experienced eating, passing wine, smells, tastes – yet I had no body. I was pure consciousness. If I didn’t understand what was happening, an explanation would come. But no teacher spoke. I explored the Roman Empire, Babylon, the times of Noah and Abraham. Any era you can name, I went there.” (George Rodonaia)

6. Holy war? Smart bombs? Friendly fire? Military intelligence?

In modern times, humans became capable of completely destroying the world and everyone in it with weapons of mass destruction. NDE experiencers reveal how war exists, not only in the physical realm, but in the spirit realm as well in the form of hell. The inner nature of man responsible for committing atrocities against others becomes manifested in spirit realms.

“I had always thought of hell, when I thought of it at all, as a fiery place somewhere beneath the earth where evil people like Hitler would burn forever. But what if one level of hell existed right here on the surface – unseen and unsuspected by the living people occupying the same space.” (Dr. George Ritchie)

7. The war against death

Today, doctors are beginning to win the war against death. Modern medical technology can now be used by doctors to literally bring people back from death. From this war against death comes the NDE which has yielded much spiritual insights.

During her NDE, Laura experienced a heated battle between the doctors who were trying to save her and the angels who were trying to bring her over to spirit. During the struggle, an angel finally said, “They’re stronger than we are,” and she was sucked back into her body. (Laura)

8. Learning from war

While it is true that love is always the best teacher, war can also result in divine revelations for the learning and soul growth of humanity. Near-death insights reveal how our greatest mistakes can be our greatest teachers.

The oldest near-death account ever recorded in western civilization was the result of war. Plato described the NDE of a soldier who was killed in battle and who came back to life on his funeral pyre. Er was told he must be a messenger to humanity to tell them of the other world. (Plato)

Lynn saw soldiers who died during the Vietnam War hiding in the near-death tunnel. They were afraid to come into the light or who were disoriented about where they were. Lynn was told there was no need to worry about them because a guide would eventually help them along. (Lynn)

Ned Dougherty once lived an unspiritual and hedonistic life. While trying to murder his business partner, Ned had a heart attack and an NDE. He saw the light of God and felt God’s embrace and love – a love greater than any love he had ever known. Spiritual beings began cheering him and conveying their loving encouragement and support. They cheered: “You are doing wonderfully. We are here to support you. Continue to do good work, and we will help you. You are part of us, and we are part of you. We stand ready to come to your aid when you need us, and you will. Call us. Beckon us. We will flock to you when the time comes!” Ned was confused by all the attention because there wasn’t anything wonderful about the way he had conducted his life. He thought, “How can I be doing wonderfully? I almost killed someone tonight. Could I be justified in what I tried to do?” Ned’s deceased friend appears and says, “You were spiritually rescued from a negative event that was taking place in your life.” (Ned Dougherty)

After a man’s son was murdered, it angered him so much he decided to kill the person responsible. One day, the spirit of his son appeared to him and said, “No hatred, no anger, Dad,” and he repeated it, “No hatred, no anger.” This amazing spiritual experience changed his heart so much he no longer felt the anger and hatred. He even began to feel sorry for the man who murdered his son because he will have to live every waking minute of his life knowing he is a murderer. (Bill Guggenheim)

During the Apostle Paul‘s NDE, he witnessed the judgment and punishment of a soul who murdered three people. Paul saw angels whipping the murderer. The soul wonders what sin he has committed. The “gatekeeper” brings forth three of his murder victims. The soul was then cast down to the world to be reincarnated. (Apocalypse of Paul)

A woman consulted Edgar Cayce on a critical health matter. She was about to undergo a very risky surgery and came to Cayce to get a reading from him on whether or not she should have the surgery done. Cayce went into a self-induced trance allowing him to have an out-of-body NDE to read the woman’s “Book of Life” record in heaven. Upon returning to his body, Cayce advised the woman to have the surgery and that it would be a complete success. He explained the surgeons who were to perform the surgery were once Inquisitors in a past life who tortured and killed her because of her religious beliefs. By going ahead with the surgery, she would be allowing the surgeons to pay a karmic debt they owed her. Because of this advice, the woman underwent the surgery. It was successful just as Cayce foretold. (Edgar Cayce)

9. The armies of heaven

Some near-death testimonies describe the unseen spiritual warfare occurring all around us and the warring angels involved. These angels are often described as extensions of God’s desire to bring peace to the world.

“God is in the process of recruiting an army in which God will shake the world. Working through his soldiers, God will produce great miracles that will shake the established hierarchy of organized religion.” (Rev. Howard Pittman)

“The archangels Michael and Gabriel are two gigantic, magnificent and mighty beings dressed in brilliant garb. Michael’s role is to choose souls to be soldiers for God. Gabriel teaches souls the ways of the soldier for God.” (Lou Famoso)

According to the archangel Michael, God’s army of angels is visiting us with a life force of energy, a spiritual energy radiated by the Creator to all humankind. (Ned Dougherty)

“I was told that the war between darkness and light upon the earth has grown so intense that if we are not continually seeking light, the darkness will consume us and we will be lost. I was not told when it would happen, but I understood that the earth is being prepared for the second coming of Christ.” (Angie Fenimore)

Souls preparing themselves for birth are like battle-hardened veterans girding themselves for combat.” (Dr. Michael Newton)

During her NDE, Kerry Kirk witnessed a battle between a Being of Light and a force of darkness during which the dark force was defeated. (Kerry Kirk)

“Everything in the spirit realm is controlled by the all-pervading vibration of God. This divine vibration controls all thoughts by destroying negative thoughts and allowing only good thoughts of love and happiness.” (Arthur Yensen)

10. No pain, no gain.

Near-death testimonies reveal how God’s love for us is not a passive love that would sit by and watch humanity destroy the world and themselves. The evidence shows that although God does not want people to kill each other, but God permits it for a higher purpose. Such evidence shows God’s love can be a tough love.

“God does not wish to see us suffer. Our adversities are of our own creation. Just as a parent punishes a child in order to correct it, so the laws of God prove immovable when we try to resist them. The more we struggle to resist, the more hopelessly do we entangle ourselves at the mental or physical or material or emotional level, and sometimes on all four levels simultaneously.” (Edgar Cayce)

“God’s overriding desire is to purify the darkness of our souls, irrespective of the suffering it puts us through to achieve that end. If we learn to accept our situations in life, instead of fighting it, then our suffering is greatly minimized.” (Daniel Rosenblit)

“All the suffering in our lives is actually for our own good. Out of the most tragic of circumstances springs human growth.” (Angie Fenimore)

Howard Storm was given the following insights from beings of light after his life review when he was fearful of returning to life and afraid he would make mistakes again:

Mistakes are an acceptable part of being human. We are here to make all the mistakes we want because it is through our mistakes that we learn. As long as we try to do what we know to be right, we will be on the right path. If we make a mistake, we should fully recognize it as a mistake, then put it behind us and simply try not to make the same mistake again. The important thing is to try our best, keep our standards of goodness and truth, and not compromise them to win people’s approval. God loves us just the way we are, mistakes and all. When we make a mistake, we should ask for forgiveness. After that, it would be an insult if we don’t accept that we are forgiven. We shouldn’t continue going around with a sense of guilt, and we should try not to repeat our mistakes. We should learn from our mistakes. God wants us to do what we want to do. That means making choices – and there isn’t necessarily any right choice. There are a spectrum of possibilities, and we should make the best choice from those possibilities. If we do that, we will receive help from the Other Side.” (Howard Storm)

“Our suffering is not a cross from God for us to bear. It is a challenge to help us grow and stay compassionate.” (Lynn)

“Life is supposed to be hard. We can’t skip over the hard parts. We must earn what we receive.” (Angie Fenimore)

An acceptance of suffering as a needed lesson can bring instantaneous healing.” (Edgar Cayce)

The Bible is very clear how human suffering is necessary to attain spiritual perfection in this world and in hell.

The scriptures show God giving us suffering in order to create character and perseverance, and to cause us to rely more on him and not in our own strength (or weakness). Suffering should never be viewed as a curse from God, but rather a blessing in disguise. The same should be viewed of the suffering in hell. It is God’s will for us to suffer in this world and in hell in order to bring about spiritual perfection. The following scriptures prove it:

Bible: “In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author [Jesus] of their salvation perfect through suffering.” (Hebrews 2:10)

Bible: “Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him [the Messiah] and cause him to suffer.” (Isaiah 53:10)

Bible: “For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for him.” (Philippians 1:29)

Bible: “For this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you follow in his steps.” (1 Peter 2:21)

Bible:To keep from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you,’ for my power is made perfect in weakness, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:7-10)

Bible: “We rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance.” (Romans 5:3)

Bible: “Brothers, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” (James 5:10-11)

Bible: “As he [Jesus] went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the work of God may be displayed in his life.'” (John 9:1-3)

Bible: “For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation, if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort… But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.” (2 Corinthians 1:5, 9)

Bible: “These (sufferings) have come so that your faith — of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire — may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor…” (1 Peter 1:7)

Bible: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted … Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:3-4; 10)

We can conclude from the verses above that the reason for suffering in this world is for purposes of purification and education. It is a small step to attribute the same reasons to the sufferings in hell. Using this attribution, it is easy to conclude that universal salvation is the goal and the reason for the suffering in hell and in this world.

It should be noted at this point that the concept of purgatory did not originate with the early Church. It came directly from Jewish sources as discussed in the Torah, the Talmud and other Jewish texts. In these texts, hell is called “Gehinnom” (in Yiddish, “Gehenna“) and it is a place of intense punishment and cleansing. This place is also known as “Sheol” and other names. Gehennom takes its name from the Valley of Hennom, where pagans once sacrificed children.

One line of Jewish thought argues that after death the soul has to be purified before it can go on the rest of its journey. The amount of time needed for purification depends on how the soul dealt with life. One Jewish tradition mentions a soul needing a maximum of 11 months for purification, which is why, when a parent dies, the kaddish (memorial prayer) is recited for 11 months.

From all that has been presented thus far from the Bible, from NDEs, from extra-Biblical references, from Jewish tradition, from early Christian tradition, and from common sense, one can conclude the following: God has a plan to save everyone in hell and eventually everyone will go to heaven. Can man continue forever to defy his Creator? Common sense tells us the answer is “no.” Common sense tells us a God of infinite in love and mercy would be willing and able to save those in hell. Any other view is dishonoring to God.

11. The meek will inherit the earth?

Jesus said the meek will inherit the Earth (Matthew 5:5). The question arises concerning the identity of the meek and the identity of the strong? Are the so-called strong actually weak? Are the so-called weak actually strong? Near-death insights reveal how people who appear to be very physically weak are often very spiritually strong and how these people chose to assume their physical weaknesses before they were born for the purpose of advancing the spiritual growth of themselves and others.

“There are many divine rewards from struggling and overcoming a handicap from birth.” (Mary Ellen)

“The mentally retarded are special people who know much more than they are able to express. They are actually more spiritually advanced and come to earth to teach the rest of us.” (Sandra Rogers)

Life is a cycle leading humanity toward perfection. Most people have this secret revealed to them when they die, but handicapped children often know this and endure their problems without complaining because they know that their burdens will pass. Some of these children have even been given the challenge of teaching the rest of us how to love.” (Dr. Frank Oski)

“Hardships are necessary for the growth of our soul.” (Sandra Rogers)

Some people have an NDE because of losing a battle against a fatal disease. During their NDE, while they are out-of-body, a Being of Light has miraculously destroyed the fatal disease that destroyed their body. They return to their body and return cured. This shows God actually does destroy diseases in NDEs – possibly as a testimony of the supremacy of the spirit over the body. (Anecdotal evidence of NDE healings)

A firefighter lost a battle against a fire he was fighting. During his NDE, he was told if he chose to return, he would miraculously not suffer the ill affects from the fire. He was told this would happen so that: “God’s power over the elements would be made manifest.” (John Hernandez)

Sarah Powell was beaten to death by an intruder in her home resulting in an NDE. In heaven, she was told by her guardian angel that she was brought to heaven to rest and gain the courage and energy to go on and finish her mission. (Sarah Powell)

12. Give me liberty or give me death

The evidence from NDE testimonies show how free will is one of God’s greatest gifts given to humanity. This means we are free to war and kill each other at will. Although God’s gift has led us to war and murder, free will is the only vehicle which permits us to truly love God and others. A robot with no free will can only do what it is programmed to do and has no choice to do otherwise. It is clear God does not want robots to love. Perhaps divine love is something which cannot programmed and can only be attained through trial and error. Perhaps this explains all the injustices existing in the world.

“War exists in the world because humans come here and make free choices to learn and evolve. Unfortunately, this creates a mess and war is a part of that mess. But the same free choice principle is instrumental in cleaning it up.” (David Oakford)

“All the misery that happens in this world is our fault. God gave us the tools to live by including free will. It is our free will that is responsible for war and hatred.” (Berkley Carter Mills)

“Some scientific discoveries were divine gifts that humanity perverted to use for war.” (Howard Storm)

“Humanity’s general inability to believe that life is everlasting is responsible for millions of people being killed by war. Human life has been held very cheaply. But humans are progressing up the spiral of evolution to a place where we know that there is no problem, no pain, no ill, no disharmony in the entire universe that will eventually not be made into harmony.” (Margaret Tweddell)

13. The perfect love of Adolf Hitler

It’s hard to comprehend how one man can have such a horrible impact on the world. But Adolf Hitler was responsible for unleashing a global war and Holocaust never before witnessed in history. We think of Hitler as the personification of evil, the devil incarnate, a monster of hideous proportions, and we assume he is now burning in hell for eternity. We believe we are incapable of doing what Hitler did and we’re mystified how anyone could do such things. For these reasons, we practically deny his humanity and demonize him. But this is one of the characteristics that makes Hitler so horrifying – he was a human being. He certainly knew love. He obviously loved his mother. Millions of Germans loved him. But the question concerning Hitler’s Holocaust is not, “Where was God?” but “Where was man?” So we cannot blame God for such actions, even though NDE testimonies reveal all human beings are a part of God:

These NDE testimonies reveal how every human being is a part of God with the “spark” of divinity within:

“Within every human being is perfect love. That is our core – this love, this perfection, this God-ness.” (Jayne Smith)

“God is within us and we are an inseparable part of God. We are perfect love as a creation of God. We and God are one – Creator and created.” (Linda Stewart)

“We must stop trying to become God because God is becoming us.. We are the human part of God.. God is expanding through us.. God is exploring Self through us in an infinite Dance of Life by every way imaginable, in an ongoing exploration through every one of us, through every piece of hair on our head, through every leaf on every tree, through every atom.” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

“We were conceived in love spiritually, and love is the center of our beings. It is the energy of our souls, the spark of our divine nature. Being made of love, we cleave to it and seek it in all that we do. When we do not have it, or when we have lost it, we grieve. Its presence or absence colors our every action. It is life. It is happiness. It is salvation itself.” (Betty Eadie)

Try to imagine what Hitler’s life review must have been like. In the light of complete love and understanding, Hitler would suddenly realize his higher nature to be perfect love. He would then become every victim of his atrocities and feel all their spiritual pain. He would see perfectly how all his thoughts and actions had a profound impact on the world, indeed, the entire universe. He would see all his monumental errors, and learned monumental lessons from his life review. One might even wonder if Hitler learned more from his life review than any other human being. We can only speculate how horrible the negative aspects of his life review must have been. It may have been too unbearable for one man to endure. He may not have withstood the negative side of his life review before seeing the positive side of his life review.

14. The perfect teacher Adolf Hitler

From big mistakes come big lessons; and it is clear that Hitler made very big mistakes leading to big lessons – not just for himself – but for all of humanity. It should be clear to us how God permitted Hitler to make these mistakes for the purpose of instructing humanity. Near-death testimonies reveal how God loves everyone unconditionally including Hitler. So we too must love Hitler unconditionally although not what he has done. We know God’s infinite mercy extends even to him and that someday Hitler will join the choir in heaven just like the rest of us.

The following NDE testimonies reveal God allows big mistakes to occur for the sake of learning big lessons:

“Everyone goes to the same place. This includes Billy Graham, Hitler, and Jeffery Dahmer.” (Mac Wright)

“Mistakes are an acceptable part of being human. We are to make all the mistakes we want. It is how we learn.” (Howard Storm)

“There really is no sin as it is known in the world. The only thing that has any meaning in the spirit world is what we think. The very core of our being is perfect love and light.” (Jayne Smith)

“There is no evil in any human soul. It is the lack of love that distorts people. We are designed by God to self-correct, just like the rest of the universe. No one is lost because everyone is already saved.” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

“I’m sure that I asked the question that had been plaguing me since childhood about the sufferings of my (Jewish) people. I do remember this: There was a reason for everything that happened, no matter how awful it appeared in the physical realm. And within myself, as I was given the answer, my own awakening mind now responded in the same manner: ‘Of course,’ I would think, ‘I already know that. How could I ever have forgotten!'” (Beverly Brodsky)

From these NDE insights, we should conclude that Hitler was not an “evil” man per se; any more than an insane man is who kills and eats a child. This is because evil does not exist — only spiritual ignorance exists. There should be no doubt that Hitler was very spiritually ignorant. He was so spiritually ignorant, we might even consider him uniquely “challenged” spiritually. It’s possible Hitler’s spiritual deficit was the result of a dysfunctional frontal cortex of his brain. Who is to say? Viewing Hitler as severely handicapped (who but “by the grace of God goes us”) makes it easier to love him unconditionally. How can we blame someone with a severe disability? It is much easier to sympathize with them.

15. The perfect lessons From Adolf Hitler

Assuming Hitler was able to enter into the Light immediately after his death, and assuming he was able to endure the tremendous negative impact of his life review and not flee into darkness because of it, he would have seen whatever positive impact he may have had on the world. A person’s life review reveals both the positive and negative impacts of a person’s life from God’s perspective. The positive impact resulting from Hitler’s atrocities would certainly include lessons which God gives to humanity for the purpose of “higher” instruction. Perhaps just one example of a positive impact from Hitler’s atrocities is how, never before in history, have so many people turned to heaven at the same time.

Hitler was probably unaware of how his homicidal actions would ultimately result in having an opposite effect of uniting the world toward a new heightened level of spiritual awareness. His atrocities have taught humanity in a very fierce way how such things must never be allowed to happen again. The world now has enough nuclear weapons to destroy the earth and thus far, another world war has not happened. A higher reality of “mutually assured destruction” has helped prevent a nuclear world war. Mutually assured destruction is similar to the principle of karma and “eye for an eye”: should any county be dumb enough to launch nuclear weapons, the result would only be their own destruction. In fact, World War II resulted in the creation of the United Nations. The following are other lessons to be drawn:

“Hitler was the catalyst that led to the development of the atom bomb, another factor that brought a new level of spiritual awareness to humanity. We now have the ability to destroy the planet many times over and everyone in it. This helped bring humanity together to prevent this from happening. The full extent of the horror of war is now realized. One act of aggression can now result in the complete oblivion of earth. Ironically, the atom bomb is actually contributing to the deterrence of complete oblivion.” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

“Hitler gave humanity a yardstick for which to measure the extent of the need for people to change for the better. The spiritual darkness that Hitler unleashed into the world greatly increased the need for spiritual light. Unbridled bigotry, hatred, and spiritual ignorance on such a massive scale are greater threats to the world than ever known before. Spiritual ignorance now has the power to bring humanity to the very brink of extinction.” (Kevin Williams)

“The legacy of Hitler demonstrates the folly of appeasing murderous dictators. It is too costly to allow them to threaten the world with impunity. Their murderous intent must be nipped in the bud early on before it takes a devastating world war to stop it. As stated earlier, God does not desire war but God will allow it to happen for the purpose of instruction leading to perfection.” (Kevin Williams)

“Hitler’s attempt to rule the world ultimately led to a shift in the balance of the world’s power. Colonialism dissolved all around the world and people began to be free to govern themselves. America became the Arsenal of Democracy to counter the threat of political oppression that breeds dictators such as Hitler. The legacy of Hitler and World War II is ultimately resulting in the victory of democracy all over the world.” (Kevin Williams)

“The NDE principle of how our greatest mistakes become our greatest lessons can certainly be applied to Hitler. Hitler and Nazism was such a colossal mistake that it resulted in a colossal lesson. A similar situation on the other side of the spectrum can be made concerning Jesus. The colossal mistake of executing Jesus led to an even greater good – the proliferation of his teachings.” (Kevin Williams)

“Humanity is designed to self-correct itself.” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

16. Apocalypse now

Near-death experiencers are given glimpses of the future. They see into a future as it would exist if current trends and probabilities continue. Near-death testimonies reveal the earth to be a single organism for which every human being is a part. We are not only God’s human awareness, we are the earth’s human awareness. Our wars and transgressions not only cause us to suffer; but they also cause the earth to suffer as well.

“The earth has terrible wounds on her body. She is gasping for breath and calling out to God and to her children to stop the killing and hatefulness. The world is dying and praying for all of us to help her to heal and regenerate.” (Dr. Liz Dale’s research)

“Humans have fallen away from living in balance with nature. Great damage will be inflicted on the earth before this harmonic balance is finally restored.” (David Oakford)

“Humans are out of harmony with the world and all its creatures, including our own brothers and sisters, with whom we are constantly at war.” (Norman Paulsen)

“Humanity is in the final moments before Jesus returns. The earth is being prepared for this event. The war between the forces of light and the forces of darkness are growing so intense on earth that humanity is in danger of being consumed by the forces of darkness.” (Angie Fenimore)

“He who understands nature walks close with God.” (Edgar Cayce)

17. The enemy within

Near-death testimonies reveal how everyone has within them a divine nature and an animal nature which wars against each other. At a higher divine level of consciousness (spirit), everyone is connected and there is no separation between things. This “Universal Consciousness” connecting us all is what people refer to as “God.” But our lower animal nature tends to believe in a delusion that somehow we are separate from other people and God and that we are not connected. This creates a spiritual struggle within us between our lower nature and our higher nature. (Edgar Cayce)

The Biblical “war in heaven” between God and “the devil” is a symbolic religious description of this real spiritual struggle within all humans between our lower animal nature and our higher spirit nature. Our higher self – our spirit – is one with (or “a part of” but also “is”) the “Universal Consciousness” which people think of as “God.” The lower self is symbolized as “the beast within” which Jesus taught to put to death by “taking up our cross” and following him in practicing unconditional love through self-sacrifice, self-deprecation, and self-denial in devotion to others. By “crucifying the flesh,” we allow our higher selves to manifest itself more and our lower unevolved animal nature to recede. The nature of the beast within humanity is manifested as self-gratification, self-indulgence, self-centeredness, selfishness, self-consciousness, self-importance, self-righteousness, self-delusion, self-condemnation, self, self, SELF (the “ego,” the “false god,” “Satan“) This spiritual condition of a “conscious self” deluding itself into thinking it is separate from the “Conscious Whole” is what the Bible symbolically refers to as the “fall” of spirit in man at the “Garden of Eden” – or the “fall” of one third of the “angels” from heaven (both Biblical analogies refer to the same spiritual event). (Edgar Cayce)

This struggle between our animal nature and our divine nature ultimately created a gulf in our consciousness which must be overcome. Self is the greatest enemy you will ever have to face. This desire for self constantly wars against our higher self – the Whole. The collective human desire for self and materialism (symbolically described in the Bible as “Babylon”) is the source of every war and atrocity committed by human beings. Only the painful processes of “crucifying self” and the “purification” of the earth will restore everything to its original glory. For humans to fully evolve from their animal nature and overcome self, it is not enough to merely believe in these things or know about them. It must be experienced and put into practice. The higher self – the spirit – must be brought into conscious awareness. (Edgar Cayce)

It is not enough to merely focus on the cross of Jesus and the divinity within him. Jesus taught people to “take up their own crosses” and follow his example and way. A person whose higher self has overcome his lower self will then become spiritually “awakened” and a spiritual “resurrection” will take place. The person will then begin to manifest the human-divine unity that Jesus, Buddha, and other avatars did. Once our spirit “comes alive” in our conscious mind through the spiritual practice of unconditional love for others, we become liberated from the cycle of evolution and rebirth. This process of spiritual awakening within an individual and within humanity at large is described in the Book of Revelation in dream symbols – the language of the soul. The liberation of humanity is when the “devil” (the delusion of separation and self-will) is then “cast into the abyss” (self-will is suppressed from consciousness by the divine will). The result will be “heaven on earth” (divine awareness within humanity). So, in conclusion, this describes in a nutshell the entire story of human evolution. It is the story of the struggle of the human spirit in overcoming the animal flesh. It is the Bible story, from Genesis to Revelation, concerning the fall and rise of the human spirit. It is paradise lost and paradise found again. The rest of the Bible is mostly commentary. (Edgar Cayce)

“The struggle between our higher and lower selves grows until finally the destructive elements are completely overcome.” (Betty Bethards)

“Humans are educated at a higher level by spirit beings who bring us into heaven. We grow and increase, and grow and increase, and shed the concerns, desires, and base animal stuff that we have been fighting much of our life. Bodily appetites melt away. It is no longer a struggle to fight them. We become who we truly are, which is part of the divine.” (Howard Storm)

“God’s love looks at all of us throughout the eyes of eternity. God’s overriding desire is to purify the darkness of our souls, irrespective of the suffering God has to put us through to achieve that end. However, it will greatly minimize our suffering if we learn to accept instead of fighting against our situation in life. (Daniel Rosenblit)

“Jesus knew he had to die on the cross to fulfill his mission. His mission was to demonstrate to humanity how to practice unconditional love through self-sacrifice in devotion to others and by overcoming self so that our divine nature can be manifested.” (Edgar Cayce)

18. War is hell

Since war is so prevalent in this world, it should be no surprise that there exists a spirit realm where the human desire to kill can be fully expressed. At death, a person’s inner nature is expressed outwardly in the spirit realm. People take their inner hellish natures with them after death. The result is what people refer to as “hell”.

“Hell is a great battlefield where thoughts are not private and where hordes of angry souls are locked in fights to the death where no death is possible. They are locked into destructive habits of mind, emotion, hatred, lust, addictions, and thought-patterns which cannot be satisfied. Angry souls have been observed arguing over some religious point and trying to kill those who do not agree with them.” (Dr. George Ritchie)

“Hell is a psychological condition which represents the hellish inner thoughts and desires within some souls. Here they become uninhibited and their hellish condition is fully manifested. No demons are there to inflict punishment. Each soul acts out their own anger and hatred by warring and tormenting others.” (Emanuel Swedenborg)

“Hell is a state where a wild orgy of frenzied taunting, screaming and fighting occurs. These souls are completely ignorant of any higher spiritual realities. They are a mob driven by unbridled cruelty and passions.” (Howard Storm)

“Murderers in hell do not see a devil. Instead they see visions of their own face distorted by hatred, greed, anger, and other defeating emotions. Souls such as these will stay in torment for a long, long time, until they believe themselves to be totally lost. At this point, they may at last cry out to God to rescue them. This wail of despair is heard by God and they are rescued. They are then given opportunities to make amends through the process of reincarnation.” (Ruth Montgomery)

19. Farewell to arms

Although the world has a long history of war and murder, near-death accounts reveal that someday all war will end and heaven will be established on earth. This will happen when humanity learns its lessons, renounces war, and changes for the better.

“There will be no nuclear war in the world because God loves the world.” (Howard Storm)

“If humanity changes for the better, a horrible world war will be averted.” (Dannion Brinkley)

“Out of all the wars that humans tried to create, God allowed only a few, to bring people to their senses and to stop them.” (Howard Storm)

“If people turn more to spirituality and less to materiality, these wars will not happen.” (Ned Dougherty)

“God is going to rescind some of humanity’s free will in favor of more divine control over human events in order to bring peace and harmony to the world.” (Howard Storm)

“Man will prey on man until man will pray for man.” (Lou Famoso)

Categories
Research Conclusions Science

The Void and the Near-Death Experience

Many near-death testimonies involve the experiencer entering a realm commonly known in metaphysical literature as “the Void.” This article discusses the nature of this realm to give the reader a good understanding of its purpose and how to deal with it after death. The general consensus among near-death testimonies is that the Void is a realm of complete and profound darkness – empty of everything except for the thought and emotional patterns of those who enter it. The Void is a perfect place for experiencers to examine themselves, contemplate their recent earth experience, and decide where they want to go next. For some experiencers, the Void is a beautiful and heavenly realm because, in the absence of all else, they are able to perfectly see the love and light within themselves. For other experiencers, the Void is a terrifying, confusing, horrible hell because, in the absence of everything, they are temporarily unable to see the love and light within themselves. For this reason, the Void also acts as a heavenly “Time Out” where the experiencer is forced to look within themselves. There is no judgment in the Void except the possibility of self-condemnation – a harsher form of self-understanding. The Void has also been understood as a process of “ego death” where the “mask” of the personality is dissolved to allow the individuality of the soul to be experienced in relation to the Whole that is God. For these reasons and more, this article may be the most important article you may read on this website.

Table of Contents

  1. Summary of insights concerning the Void
  2. The nature of the Void
  3. Love does not exist in the Void
  4. Light does not exist in the Void
  5. Beings of light near the Void
  6. Religious traditions and the Void
  7. Profound experiences of the Void
  8. The reasons for the existence of the Void
    a. Self-reflection
    b. Decision-making
    c. Purification
  9. How to escape from the Void
    a. Love sets you free from the Void
    b. The light sets you free from the Void
    c. Your faith sets you free from the Void
    d. Beings of Light set you free from the Void
    e. Reincarnation sets you free from the Void

1. Summary of insights concerning the Void

Some near-death experiencers travel very quickly through the Void by means of the tunnel and on to higher realms. Other experiencers, particularly those who have developed a strong attraction for some earthly desire may instead enter a lower realm called the earthbound realm in a vain attempt to re-enter earth. But many near-death experiencers, as you will see, enter the Void immediately after death. From there, they may then enter the tunnel toward the light in the next heavenly realm. Other experiencers remain in the Void for one reason or another until they are ready to leave it.

For some souls, the time spent in the Void may feel like only a moment. For others, it may seem like eternity. This is because the nature of the Void is for contemplation. Once the soul is ready, the light appears and the tunnel takes them into higher realms. For souls who either refuse the light or have spent a lifetime ignoring the light within themselves, it may take what seems like an “eternity” before they are ready to move on. The problem for some souls is they prefer darkness rather than the light for one reason or another. For some of these souls, their only hope is reincarnation. This is because it is not possible for any soul to be confined in the earthbound and Void realms forever. God is infinitely merciful and would never abandon anyone to their own spiritual agony for too long; however, God allows souls to remain there only as long as it suits their spiritual growth.

The Void is not punishment. It is the perfect place for all souls to see themselves and to purge themselves from all illusions. For those souls who are too self-absorbed in their own misery to see the light, there are a multitude of Beings of Light nearby to help them when they freely chose to seek them. The nature of love and light is such that it cannot be forced upon people who don’t want it. Choosing love and light over darkness is the key to being freed from the Void. The moment the choice is made, the light and tunnel appears and the soul is drawn into higher realms.

2. The nature of the Void

As mentioned earlier, nothing exists in the Void except your own thought and emotional patterns. Within this dark emptiness, ego is stripped away

The following is P.M.H. Atwater‘s explanation of the nature of the Void:

“My dining room below was slowly but surely merging into another kind of space coming down from a source past my ceiling. These two spaces or dimensions of space were merging into each other, but I was not moving. I did not change position in any way. I was where I was, but the world around me was changing and shifting and becoming something else. My dining room faded from sight as this new space became more visible and more real. It was like nothing I had ever seen before. It encompassed me. The new space was both totally bright and totally dark at the same time yet without shape, form, sound, color, mass, or movement. It was aglow but there was no light source. It was dark but there was no darkness. Somehow within this strange environment was the presence of all shapes, all forms, all sound, all color, all mass, and all movement. Everything that ever was, is, or will be was there, yet there was nothing there at all. It was everything and it was nothing, yet within it was a feeling, a pulse, a sensation of energy “winking” off and on — a sparkling potential which “shimmered,” just as Jell-O does before it responds to touch. I called it “The Void” for lack of a better term or idea. It was comfortable enough, so within its crammed nothingness I proceeded with my experiments (At this point, Atwater experiments in the Void by creating images, such as a house, with her mind. She is then visited by deceased relatives and Jesus. Afterward, she finds herself back in the Void). I was now alone in this non-place and there was nothing. For the first time I looked upon myself to see what possible form or shape I might have, and to my surprise and joy I had no shape or form at all. I was naught but a sparkle of pure consciousness, the tiniest, most minuscule spark of light imaginable. And that is all I was. I was content that way, without ego or identity, pure, whole, and uncomplicated. Within that nothingness I had become, I simply existed, ecstatic in perfect bliss and peace, like perfection itself and perfect love. Everywhere around me were sparkles like myself, billions and trillions of them, winking and blinking like on / off lights, pulsating from some unknown source. I would have existed in that state of bliss forever had an irritation not made itself known, like an old sore deep within me; then energy waves burst forth from that deep old sore, and with them came the life of Phyllis, playing itself out from birth to death. (At this point, Atwater experiences a life review) (P.M.H. Atwater)

The rest of this section will focus on important characteristics of the Void such as:

(a) There is no love there.
(b) There is no light there.
(c) Beings of light are nearby to help tormented souls.
(d) Religious references to the Void.
(e) Profound examples of people who experienced the Void.

3. Love does not exist in the Void

The only love that exists in the Void is the love you bring into it. The Void itself has no love or light and because of this, the only way to leave the Void and enter the higher realms is by choosing love. The moment love is desired, the light appears as if summoned. Most near-death accounts describe very brief encounters with the Void, if any at all. It is probably true that most people choose love over darkness, much like most people choose to remain out of prison. God does not force anyone out of the Void. The way to heaven must be earned through cultivating and bearing the fruits of love and light. This is the key to getting out of the Void and into heaven. The following near-death accounts describe the loveless nature of the Void.

“While in second heaven (the Void) Howard Pittman felt an overwhelming oppressive feeling and wondered what was causing it. He was told that it is because there is no love there.” (Rev. Howard Pittman)

“In the Void, your only source of stimulation will be your own thoughts.” (Robert Monroe)

An interesting thing that Mellen-Thomas Benedict learned while in the Void was that God was not there. God is here on earth. That’s what it is all about. Humanity‘s constant search for God outside of this world doesn’t need to happen. Everything is here. We are God’s exploration of God through us. People are so busy trying to become God that they ought to realize that we are already God and God is becoming us. That’s what it is really about. (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

4. Light does not exist in the Void

Light and love is God. Because of this, God’s influence in the Void is limited because darkness rules in the Void. In the same manner, the influence of darkness (spiritual ignorance) on earth is limited because light rules on earth. And light cannot be forced upon people. But once light/love is chosen by the soul, the soul’s stay in the Void is ended. The problem is that many souls have not realized divine love and light within themselves while on earth. This makes it difficult to leave the Void.

The following description of the second stage after death by Emanuel Swedenborg is a remarkable description of the Void:

“Immediately following death, there is a period of self-discovery in which the social masks worn on earth dissolve away and the true self is revealed. Each soul then shapes their own situation to correspond with their real inner nature. The second stage after death is where people learn the inward things that belong to their mind and their true selves. Everyone is directed into this stage after death because it is the actual state of the spirit. If a soul was inwardly involved in goodness while in the physical world, they will behave rationally and wisely at this stage. If a soul was inwardly involved in evil while in the physical world, they will behave senselessly and crazily. Once their outward matters are taken away from them, their madness is unveiled. People who are thinking about divine matters while they are active on earth are in touch with angels of heaven. It is a life of love, a life of behaving honestly and fairly in every task, that leads to a heavenly life. This life is not hard.” (Emanuel Swedenborg)

The following is a description of the Void from the revelations of Edgar Cayce who referred to the Void as outer darkness – a term that can be found in the Bible.

“After death, we may enter a region that is Void of love, life, and light, Void of everything. For some, this region is approximately their wish come true. Here they are truly alone with themselves. For some souls, this is a pain that is unbearable. In the absence of truth, love, gentleness, and kindness, some souls fill the Void with an irrational and unbelievable amount of pain and fear. It is so dark in the realm of outer darkness that the darkness hurts and panic grips them without knowing why. There are various degrees of darkness to this realm, and it is darker and denser at the center than at its outer fringes. The closer we are to the outer edges, the more interaction there is with others in the realm. The closer to the center, the darker and more painful is the solitude. Those who find themselves in outer darkness cannot travel across this dimension. They must grow through the levels of this realm. After death, one may find themselves in a particular degree of darkness that most closely corresponds to the degree of the absence of love in one’s life. Outer darkness is not a punishment. It is a region which operates lawfully for the benefit of those who are there. This region is not a realm which was created for any soul to experience, but one which came about as a consequence of the negative activity of souls in creation. So great has been the desire for self, so monumental across time and space has been the selfishness of some of God’s creatures, that this realm is the creation or manifestation of their own collective activities. Outer darkness and the reality with which it is associated were created and are held in place by collective self-interest. (Edgar Cayce)

5. Beings of light near the Void

Near-death accounts involve the experiencer observing Beings of Light near the Void ready to help, or helping, souls in the Void. Souls in the Void are unaware that Beings of Light are all around them, until they decide they need God’s help.

Asher Elmekiess was in a place where darkness was everywhere. Yet there were sparkles all around like little stars. It was a place of so much love, peace and joy. Asher did not want to move or come back from there. (Asher Elmekiess)

“There are souls called the shining ones who dedicate themselves to going into this dark realm and bringing spiritual light. The souls who are dedicated to this work of rehabilitation are clothed in protective garments so that they are not harmed or pierced by the dagger-like thoughts of hatred which those in the dark realms are throwing out. The shining ones are not allowed to go and talk to these people, but they stand nearby and call to them through thought – prayer, if you like. The moment the souls in this dark area respond in a positive way, the ones who have come to help are able to bring them out into a less dense, foggy world and eventually out into the realm of light.” (Margaret Tweddell)

6. Religious traditions and the Void

The Void is known by many religious traditions by many different names. Some of them are: purgatory, hell, outer darkness, prison, Gehennom, Sheol, pit, abyss, an-nar, and Preta-Loka. The following is a brief description of some of these traditions.

“[During deep meditation] I lost all sense of individualness and only after attempting to regain a sense of myself did I realize that I had lost individual consciousness … It was as if my consciousness turned off a gravitational force that somehow maintained selfness, allowing my mind to slip into an infinite vacuum much like the difference between a contained planetary atmosphere and infinite, airless outer space. I assume this is what the Eastern seekers mean by entering the Void.” (John Van Auken)

“[During deep meditation] I immediately found myself in a beautiful place, right next to the Light and Presence of God, where we are all living traces of His movement, yet still Him in essence. We are ourselves, yet also Him. I could feel it! All unique, but still Him. We all were open both to God and to connecting with each other, and there was nothing else except this! This was prior to inner and outer worlds, prior to space and time, prior to existence itself! This is the place where there are no limits, where peace is not yet disturbed, where surrender is natural, and where our life is wholly our relatedness to each other and to God.” (Stuart Dean)

The Tibetan Buddhist Book of the Dead teaches that once awareness is freed from the body, it creates its own reality as one would experience in a dream. The Clear Light of the Ultimate Reality appears and the deceased must embrace this supreme experience not in a selfish and egoistic way but rather with love and compassion for everyone. The deceased must then realize that his own self is one with this light in order to attain Nirvana. If the deceased responds with fear, it is still not liberated and will descend into the second phase [the Void] where peaceful deities appear. If liberation is not attained at this time, then the peaceful deities turn into wrathful deities. It is important in this realm to recognize the Void-ness of all these beings as a projection of their own mind. (Tibetan Buddhism)

The writers of the New Testament referred to the Void more than they did heaven. Here is just one of these references:

Bible: “This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.” (John 3:19-21)

7. Profound experiences of the Void

There are many very interesting near-death accounts that involve an extended experience in the Void. From such accounts, much information concerning the Void can be gleaned. The following profound near-death experiences with the Void are the best I have come across.

Guenter Wagner’s Void experience is too long to summarize here. His Void experience is one of my personal favorites.

Other excellent Void experiences come from: • Mellen-Thomas BenedictNancy Evans BushRaNelle Wallace.

Other, less in depth, Void experiences come from: • Don BrubakerRev. Kenneth HaginDr. George RodonaiaThomas SawyerAngie Fenimore

8. The reasons for the existence of the Void

a. Self-reflection

Examining your inner spiritual nature is an important part of soul growth and there is no better place to do this than in the Void. Those who have learned to ignore their inner spiritual nature have the most difficulty in the Void because they have the most to learn. This is why it is important to examine your inner spirituality on earth before you get to the Void. In fact, that is one of the important reasons why we come to earth in the first place.

Lynnclaire Dennis entered a vacuum, a sacred space that was exceedingly real and where her grief disappeared. The love within her saved her from oblivion. (Lynnclaire Dennis)

“All you may know of heaven or hell is within your own self.” (Edgar Cayce)

b. Decision-making

The ultimate purpose of the Void is for us to look perfectly within ourselves. If a person looks deep enough within themselves, they will find the light that can bring them from the darkness. The problem is that many people choose not to do this for one reason or another. The following near-death accounts involve making decisions in the Void.

c. Purification

The suffering that souls experience in the Void serves a purpose for good. Many religious traditions teach that God gives us suffering in order to create character, perseverance, and to cause us to rely more on God and not in our own strength (or weakness). Suffering should never be viewed as a curse from God, but rather a blessing in disguise. It is God’s will for us to suffer in this world and in the Void in order to bring forth goodness. In fact, this is the symbolism behind the crucifixion of Jesus.

Betty Bethards learned that the Void is a realm of total darkness where we must confront the fears we have built within our own minds. As soon as we are able to meet them directly, to face them, they dissipate. It provides the opportunity for people to confront and move beyond the negativity they have created. Souls do not enter the Void unless they need to experience it for their growth. Hell is a level of consciousness which can be experienced in or out of the body. It is a lonely place where one is not allowed to be in communication with anyone other than one’s own negativity. (Betty Bethards)

The type of near-death experience that PMH Atwater categorizes as the initial experience, involves elements such as a loving nothingness, the living dark, a friendly voice, or a brief out-of-body episode. Unpleasant or hell-like experiences involve inner cleansing and self-confrontation. (P.M.H. Atwater)

“Upon death, most souls go through a heavenly process before entering into heaven. Some souls, instead of experiencing the tunnel and bright light upon death, find themselves in an abyss of empty, joyless, nothingness for a brief period of time.” (Sylvia Browne)

9. How to escape from the Void

Escaping from the Void is very easy for some souls and difficult for others. Various near-death accounts provide a wealth of information on how to escape from the Void. Here is a list of them:

a. Love sets you free from the Void.
b. The light sets you free from the Void.
c. Your faith sets you free from the Void.
d. Beings of Light set you free from the Void.
e. Reincarnation sets you free from the Void.

The following information is a more detailed discussion of these ways to escape from the Void:

a. Love sets you free from the Void

The Void is a spiritual dimension that exists within us. During our lives, we may fill this Void with many things such as: love, hatred, happiness, sadness, knowledge, ignorance, family, just to name a few. And when we die, we actually step into this spiritual dimension we have filled. Whatever we fill the Void within us with, at death, we enter into it. Perhaps this is one good reason why the most important aspect of our missions in life have to do with love. Realizing, filling and cultivating divine love within our Void and sharing this love with others during our life will create a heavenly paradise that will be manifested in death. The following near-death insights deal with love and its relationship to the Void.

“After death, many people find themselves in the Void. The way out of the Void is simple. You must think of love. Those who you love might show up to tell you to go back to your body or to think of love. To recognize love as a reality is the key to getting out of the Void.” (Brian Krebs)

Lynnclaire Dennis’ love redeemed her from oblivion. We only have to remember to make love real. (Lynnclaire Dennis)

“Ignorance of the need to seek spiritual growth may keep some souls in the Void for a long period of time.” (Nora Spurgin)

“Those in the dark realm can progress, but their progress is limited. The key is love.” (RaNelle Wallace)

“To protect yourself from the unspiritual souls in the darkness, whether on earth or in the Void, chose to focus on love.” (David Oakford)

Joni Maggi was in a dark outer space and feeling total bliss. It was there she learned that the universe is upheld by love. (Joni Maggi)

b. Light sets you free from the Void

While some people describe leaving the Void through love, others describe leaving the Void through light. They are both describing the same thing and the same God. One near-death experiencer put it so nicely, “God is the light that loves.”

Laurelynn Martin floated up through blackness where there existed no fear, no pain, and no misunderstandings. There was also a sense of well-being. She was enveloped by total bliss in an atmosphere of unconditional love and acceptance. The darkness was warm and soft, a blanket of velvety love, stretching endlessly. The freedom of total peace was intensified beyond any ecstatic feeling she had ever felt on earth. In the distance, a glorious white, golden light beckoned her forward. (Laurelynn Martin)

Ray Meir was in a very dark, vast, peaceful area. It was much like floating through outer space and total darkness. He felt extremely peaceful and very comfortable. Ahead he could see an extremely bright light attracting him. He felt a great love emanating from the light and he moved toward the light much like a child walking to its father. (Ray Meir)

Barbara Springer entered a black space where there existed no light; but she wasn’t frightened at all. The space was totally comfortable. Ahead of her she noticed a bright light. (Barbara Springer)

Darlene Holman approached the blackness. Then see saw a light in the distance with souls around the edge of it. (Darlene Holman)

Hal was in the darkness and could neither see nor feel himself nor anything else. He wondered if the blackness was all there was and if he’d have to make do with his memories and imagination until they ran out. He was absorbed in thought when a faint glimmer of light appeared; but it quickly vanished. He tried to summon the light and another brief burst of light appeared. He wondered if he could attract its attention. The light appeared again and the nearer it came, the brighter it was. In the light, he could dimly see himself. The light grew very bright and he tried to look away. It was so bright that he feared its intensity. He yelled for it to stop and the light replied, “I will not harm you.” (Hal)

c. Faith sets you free from the Void

By reflecting on positive thoughts instead of negative thoughts, and feeling the love and light within yourself, you will be able to progress from the Void. The following information demonstrates how faith can set you free.

George Rodonaia was surrounded by a profound darkness which shocked and horrified him. He wondered why he was in darkness and what he was supposed to do. He realized that because he could still think, this meant he still existed. Then he reasoned that since he existed, he should think only positive thoughts. He wondered how to define what is positive in the darkness. When he thought of light, he was instantly in the light. (Rev. George Rodonaia)

“As soon as we are able to confront our fears directly, to face them, they dissipate.” (Betty Bethards)

Mrs. Walters tumbled in the blackness and felt frightened because she didn’t know where she was going. She thought, “I have to get back inside my body.” Immediately, she was back inside her body without knowing how. (Mrs. Walters)

d. Beings of light set you free from the Void

Beings of Light are near and ready to help anyone in the Void out of their predicament. All it takes is but a desire or a cry for help, no matter how large or small the desire. Some experiencers, such as Linda Stewart, didn’t belong in the Void at all and were automatically rescued from the Void. The following is a summary of her rescue from the Void.

Linda Stewart was irresistibly draw toward a vast, endless black Void or black hole. Gradually, she felt herself sinking into it. It appeared that she would simply disappear into the dark nothingness. As her new awareness waned, she yielded to the heaviness overtaking her as darkness filled her mind. Her vision became obscured as she began to merge into the blackness. Offering no resistance, she released her hold on any remaining shred of consciousness and personal identity. As she felt the last of herself disappearing into nothingness, she was suddenly buffeted by a powerful, energetic force that swooped beneath and lifted her, carrying her upward. She was barely conscious. Her only awareness was the sensation of rising. Vast distances seemed to fly by her and the higher she rose, the more her head cleared. She felt peaceful and loved immeasurably. She knew that she was in the arms of a Being who cherished her with perfect love. This Being was Jesus and he carried her from the Void into a new reality. (Linda Stewart)

“Higher beings know what to do to help a soul in the Void advance themselves if they so choose to do so.” (David Oakford)

e. Reincarnation sets you free from the Void

God never abandons anyone to the Void or anywhere. Those who are either unwilling or ignorant about entering the light may have only one choice and that is to return to earth through reincarnation. Again, this is not punishment; it is a way for such souls to return to the earth-school for more lessons and learn how to progress.

“For some souls, the only hope out of the Void is through reincarnation.” (Arthur Yensen)

Categories
Research Conclusions Science

The Tunnel and the Near-Death Experience

One skeptical theory used to explain the near-death phenomenon has nothing to do with death at all. It states that NDEs are actually memories of birth. A baby being born leaves the womb to travel down a tunnel towards a light, and what waits for it in the light is usually a great deal of love and warmth. According to the theory, what happens at near-death is only a stored memory of what happened when life began.

However, there are many arguments against this theory: a baby being born does not exactly float at high speed down a tunnel, but is buffeted along with difficulty by its mother’s contractions. And how does this model explain the meeting with friends and relatives who have died? The Being of Light is supposed to be the midwife or the doctor who rules the delivery room – but many babies are born without a midwife or doctor present, or perhaps with many people present. On a purely practical level, a baby’s nervous system is not sufficiently developed to allow it to assimilate and store memories of the birth process. Those who argue in favor of this theory say the feelings of peace and bliss are a memory of the peace of the womb when all physical needs were met by the mother and there were no stresses and strains. But why should this be any more likely than the feelings of peace and bliss are relief from the pain of illness and injury at the point of death? Being born is often not a pleasant experience for babies which leaves them crying in agony. In contrast, NDEs are more often described as the most pleasurable experience a person can have. The birth process is not pleasant. The following information will show you how the NDE tunnel is an experience like none other.

Table of Contents

  1. Insights Into the NDE Tunnel Experience
  2. Brief Encounters With the NDE Tunnel
  3. Extraordinary NDE Tunnel Experiences
  4. Edgar Cayce’s Extraordinary NDE Tunnel Experiences
  5. Skeptic Susan Blackmore on the NDE Tunnel

1. Insights Into the NDE Tunnel Experience

One of the nine elements that generally occur during NDEs is the tunnel experience. This involves being drawn into darkness through a tunnel, at an extremely high speed, until reaching a realm of radiant golden-white light. Also, although they sometimes report feeling scared, they do not sense that they were on the way to hell or that they fell into it. Instead of a tunnel, some people report rising suddenly into the heavens and seeing the earth and the celestial sphere as they would be seen by astronauts in space. Once on the other side of the tunnel, or after they have risen into the heavens, the dying meet people who glow with an inner light. Often they find that friends and relatives who have already died are there to greet them. (Dr. Raymond Moody)

Jan Price did not go through a tunnel during her NDE and a spirit guide explained to her why this wasn’t so: “You have wondered why you did not enter through the tunnel you have heard so much about. It is true that many experience their first awareness of this reality in that way, but when you separated from the body, you were immediately aware of the Light. You have been here before for brief periods and knew the way, so it was not necessary to travel through that corridor of mind known as the tunnel.” (Jan Price).

By analyzing a large number of NDE accounts on this website, a map of the various paths to heaven can be created. Here are the paths I have found:

a. The journey from the earth to the earthbound realm.
b. The journey from the earth to the Void.
c. The journey from the earth to the Void and then to heaven. (by means of the tunnel)
d. The journey from the earth to heaven. (by means of the tunnel)
e. The journey from the earth to the earthbound realm, then to the Void, then to heaven.
f. The journey from the earth to the Void, then through the tunnel to a heavenly receiving station in heaven. (Kevin Williams)

In his book, Life At Death, Dr. Kenneth Ring analyzed the near-death experiences of 24 people who attempted suicide. Among them, no one reported the tunnel phenomenon. (Dr. Kenneth Ring)

Webmaster’s Note: Many near-death experiencers by attempted suicide have found themselves in a gray or foggy area on the outer edges of the Void where such people reside until they make an important decision. Because my analysis suggests the main way out of the Void is through the tunnel, then this analysis from Dr. Ring supports my research conclusion that suicide experiencers have not gone through the tunnel because they have not yet made the decision which would take them through the tunnel and into higher spirit realms. (Kevin Williams)

“In the tunnel connecting this world with the next, humans as well as animals travel through the tunnel.” (Sharon Wood)

“The tunnel in the NDE is the pathway to God.” (Brian Krebs)

“The tunnel is a porthole to the place where all souls go if they choose.” (David Oakford)

In 45 Hindu near-death accounts, Pasricha and Stevenson found no evidence of a tunnel experience which is frequently found in western accounts of the near-death experience. However, another near-death researcher, Susan Blackmore, has reported accounts of a tunnel experience in her research of 8 Hindu near-death experiencers. (Hindu NDEs)

Robert Monroe: “Going from a waking state or semi-waking state into an amorphous state is usually the most dramatic kind of spiritual travel experience. In one type of amorphous transition, the traveler suddenly senses a powerful vibration or sound and is caught up in that energy. This is sometimes accompanied by a feeling of being drawn or propelled by this vibration at tremendous speed through a dark space. This experience seems very similar to the descriptions of the tunnel associated with near-death experience. Numerous people who came very close to death (no heartbeat or respiration) have near-death experiences where they have described different types of sounds or vibrations which propelled them at seemingly great speed through a dark tunnel or corridor.” (Robert Monroe)

“It’s not quite the same, because when you astral project, you don’t have to go through the white light, or a tunnel. When you project, you usually go right where you would like to go, right away.” (Jerry Gross)

“The dark tunnel is described in many ways, such as being like a cave, a well, an enclosure, a funnel, a vacuum, a void, a sewer, a valley, or a cylinder.” (Dr. Raymond Moody)

Dr. Ronald Siegel is the distinguished expert in psychopharmacolgy at UCLA. He is one of the leading experts in the field of hallucinogens and an ardent skeptic of the afterlife hypothesis. Dr. Siegel explains his theory of what causes the famous tunnel perspective in NDEs: “This is probably due to the stimulation of the central nervous system that mimics the effects of light on the retina. It can also occur when the electrical activity in the brain is altered in such a way that the threshold for perception of phosphenes (electrical activity in the visual system) is lowered, and bright lights are seen in otherwise dark surroundings. This point can create a tunnel perspective.” (Dr. Ronald Siegel)

“The way to escape the void is to choose love and light over the darkness. Once this happens, the light appears and the tunnel takes you toward the light and into heaven for further instruction.” (Kevin Williams)

Kevin Williams continues: “One fact about the differing perceptions that people have can be demonstrated when several witnesses observe the same event, such as an automobile accident, and the witnesses’ testimonies are not the same. One particular NDE example I have read illustrates the differing perceptions that experiencers can have of the same event. This particular example involves the tunnel experience. Most people describe their experience of traveling through the tunnel as a very beautiful and pleasant experience. However, one particular person (I cannot remember the name or the documentary) went through the tunnel kicking, screaming, and trying to grab the edges of the tunnel to prevent from going through it. This particular person was completely horrified by the tunnel experience. This is also a good illustration of how one person’s heaven can be another person’s hell. Beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder.” (Kevin Williams)

2. Brief Encounters With the NDE Tunnel

“As I looked up, there was a tunnel – a light – an opening. It was glowing. Around that opening were many people milling around.” (Anne Horne)

While Warmack was in a coma in the hospital when he became aware of something “in the back of me, like a beam of light, brighter than the sun, brighter than any light I had ever seen.” He traveled through a tunnel and felt that he was traveling back in time. (Gregory Warmack)

“Suddenly I was standing alone in a room with large, heavy doors leading into other rooms. Someone came to me. I didn’t see him; I only heard his voice. He led me up through what seemed like a tunnel. I seemed to be walking, but my feet didn’t touch a floor.” (Clara)

“I was spinning sideways somehow through this tunnel. At first it was very dark, then it seemed like there was these streaks. I was falling but I wasn’t. I was traveling. That’s maybe more the word. There was this big white light at the end of it. I kind of came out into this.” (Paul Carr)

“For a while, I watched on as the nurses and doctors worked quickly to revive me. Then, I lost interest and my attention turned towards a long dark tunnel. At the end of the tunnel was a very bright light and I floated to the opening. Once inside, I moved with what seemed to be an extraordinary and effortless speed, and finally reached the light.” (Nadia McCaffrey)

“I asked to see the rest of the universe; beyond our solar system, beyond all human illusion. The light then told me that I could go with the Stream. I did, and was carried through the light at the end of the tunnel. I felt and heard a series of very soft sonic booms. What a rush!” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

“I remember closing my eyes. I am in this long dark tunnel. It is so cold and so dark. I have never been in a place so cold as this tunnel. I was traveling at the speed of light. As I neared the end of the tunnel, I saw the most brilliant yellow light coming toward me. I was beginning to feel warm. The nearer the light got, the warmer I felt.” (Beth Hammond)

“Then I began to float upwards and I realized I was having to make a decision. It was almost a physical two-way pull. There seemed to be no ceiling above me, just a black hole into which I was being compelled by a very strong force. It seemed as if I was to make a decision as to which way I would choose to go – up into the tunnel or back into my body.” (Caroline Sharp)

“I saw a pinpoint of light in the distance. The black mass around me began to take on more of the shape of a tunnel, and I felt myself traveling through it at an even greater speed, rushing toward the light. I was instinctively attracted to it, although again, I felt that others might not. As I approached it, I noticed the figure of a man standing in it, with the light radiating all around him”. (Betty Eadie)

“I asked God how could I possibly return back down the tunnel and back into my hospital bed. He spoke and said, ‘Son, tilt your head, now feel the liquid drain from your eye. Now open your eye and see.’ And I was immediately back in my physical body.” (Ian McCormack)

“Upon death, most people go through a heavenly process before entering into heaven. Evil people, instead of experiencing the tunnel and bright light upon death, are sent through what Sylvia calls the left door and enter into an abyss of empty, joyless, nothingness for a brief period of time … Most people, who go through the heavenly process, go through a tunnel and towards the light of God.” (Sylvia Browne)

Right then, she said she felt herself being sucked away into a tunnel at a fast pace. Then she was flying so fast through this dark tunnel. She then stopped midstream in it and was in this dark tunnel. She never saw a light at all. She heard this voice say to her, “If I let you go back what will you do with your life?” She responded back to this voice, “I will dedicate my life to you.” She knew this overpowering, loving presence was GOD himself asking her this question. She never saw him – only heard him. He then showed her pictures of her future helping others and other things like a movie screen showing her future. Then she felt this swoosh back through the tunnel and back into her body. (Lisa Marie)

In 1982, while a Fellow for the National Cancer Institute, Dr. Melvin Morse was working in a clinic in Pocatello, Idaho. He was called to revive a young girl who nearly died in a community swimming pool. She had had no heart beat for 19 minutes, yet completely recovered. She was able to recount many details of her own resuscitation, and then said that she was taken down a brick lined tunnel to a heavenly place. When Dr. Morse showed his obvious skepticism, she patted him shyly on the hand and said, “Don’t worry, Dr. Morse, heaven is fun!.” (Dr. Melvin Morse)

Marilyn Gibson wrote: “Suddenly, I found myself in another dimension. A glowing golden tunnel appeared in front of me. Far, far into the tunnel, almost as if at its distant opening, stood a man dressed in a splendid golden robe … The Master continued his invitation, but he was so far away. I wanted to fly to him. I knew that this was possible; it was simply a matter of making the decision … Exiting my body would be an easy choice. I would float through this glorious tunnel and seek the answers the Master had to offer. Yet, just as I slipped into the tunnel something pulled me back. While I was surrendering to the marvelous force that had come to claim me, the hospital staff had worked to pull me out of my coma with massive doses of cortisone. I remember nothing after the tunnel experience until three days later.” (Marilyn Gibson)

“Then I remember a very powerful force pulling me towards a serene, very beautiful realm, a higher realm. I traveled very slowly along a tunnel toward a bright light, and I could feel an overwhelming sense of warmth and peace and whiteness. I wanted to walk into the whiteness, which was so tranquil and happy. It was like stepping into a vacuum, there was nothing tangible, no scenery to look at, but a tremendous feeling of being somewhere, like nirvana. I felt okay, as though this was where I was meant to be, as if I had arrived home, and I was at ease with myself for the first time in a long time.” (Helen)

“Then I found myself in what appeared to be a large tunnel with a small white light at the other end. I was moving toward this light pretty fast. I was surrounded by a feeling of absolute peace and what I can only describe as unconditional love. It felt wonderful to be there. As I moved towards the light, I was aware of two presences near to me. They were telling me by thought alone that it was not my time. I had to go back. We were communicating just by thoughts back and forth to each other. I knew these presences knew me, but I did not know them. I had never met them before. Then I was moving quickly back down through the tunnel and into my body.” (Enigma)

“I started to move toward the light. The way I moved, the physics, was completely different than it is here on earth. It was something I had never felt before and never felt since. It was a whole different sensation of motion. I obviously wasn’t walking or skipping or crawling. I was not floating. I was flowing. I was flowing toward the light. I was accelerating and I knew I was accelerating, but then again, I didn’t really feel the acceleration. I just knew I was accelerating toward the light. Again, the physics was different – the physics of motion of time, space, travel. It was completely different in that tunnel, than it is here on earth. I came out into the light and when I came out into the light, I realized that I was in heaven.” (Barbara Springer)

“I then remember traveling a long distance upward toward the light. I believe that I was moving very fast, but this entire realm seemed to be outside of time. Finally, I reached my destination. It was only when I emerged from the other end that I realized that I was no longer accompanied by the being who had brought me there. But I wasn’t alone. There, before me, was the living presence of the light … My mind was naked; in fact, I became pure mind. The ethereal body which I had traveled in through the tunnel seemed to be no more.” (Beverly Brodsky)

“I then felt myself moving off very fast, exceedingly fast, into what seemed like outer space. I always felt that it was the fact of going so fast that gave me the sense of being in a tunnel. And I was going toward a very bright light. As I was traveling along I could see different-colored lights, and then I got stopped, just stopped before I got to the light.” (Janet)

“As a massive field of energy began to form in the sky directly in front of me, I heard a loud, grinding mechanical noise as the mass of energy shaped itself into a cylinder funneling upwards. It seemed as if the darkness of the sky turned into liquid as the mass of energy curled like an ocean wave and formed a perfect tunnel that stretched into the heavens. As I stared into the large and imposing tunnel of energy, a shimmering, luminescent-blue field of energy began to float down the tunnel toward me. As it rapidly approached, I watched the luminescent-blue field mass into a form and begin to materialize into an image of a human being. As the image composed itself, I found myself face to face with an old friend.” (Ned Dougherty)

“A dot of light appeared far off in front of me. It was just a pinpoint, a tiny speck in the distance, but its brilliance distinguished it from all other lights around me and I instinctively pressed towards it. Emanating from it was a love and hope and peace that my soul hungered for. I wanted, I needed this brilliant, radiant light. The black tube took the shape of a tunnel now, opening up as I neared its end. The light burst forth before me, filling everything with brightness, and I was coming upon it impossibly fast. ‘Oh, my gosh,’ I thought, ‘It’s brighter than the sun. It’ll blind me! It’ll kill me!'” (RaNelle Wallace)

“A tunnel was forming, opening like the eye of a hurricane and coming toward me. I actually didn’t move at all; the tunnel came to me. There was the sound of chimes as the tunnel spiraled toward and then around me. Soon there was nothing to be seen – no crying Sandy, no ambulance attendants trying to jump-start my dead body, no desperate chatter with the hospital over the radio – only a tunnel that engulfed me completely and the intensely beautiful sound of seven chimes ringing in rhythmic succession. I looked ahead into the darkness. There was a light up there, and I began to move toward it as quickly as possible. I was moving without legs at a high rate of speed. Ahead the light became brighter and brighter until it overtook the darkness and left me standing in a paradise of brilliant light.” (Dannion Brinkley)

Randy Gehling approached a dark tunnel. When he held back and said that he was afraid to go into the darkness, the angel smiled and told them that this was the only way that they could get to their destination. “I could see a bright light at the far end of the tunnel, so I said, ‘All right, as long as you don’t let go of my hand!’ She laughed and said, ‘I told you that I would never leave your side. I have been with you ever since you were born. In fact, I was there at your mother’s side when you were born. I am your guardian angel.'” Randy asked her what her name was. “We don’t have names in the manner that you mean,” she said, “but if it makes you feel better to call me something, you may call me, Areo (ah-ree-o).” The tunnel did not prove to be such a terrible ordeal after all. Randy and Areo seemed to whoosh through it quickly. (Randy Gehling)

Lynn wrote: “Suddenly, I had to move on, so I floated into the waiting room, where my parents were. My father had his head buried in my mother’s lap. He was kneeling at her feet, his arms wrapped around her waist, and he was sobbing. My mother was stroking his head, whispering to him. This scene shocked me, as my father was not prone to showing emotions. Once I realize they would be fine, I felt myself pulled into a horizontal tunnel. The ride through the tunnel was like nothing else. I remember thinking, ‘So this is death.’ The tunnel was dark, and every once in a while something that looking like lightning would flash across my path. These flashes were brilliant in color and didn’t scare me. At the end of the tunnel was a bright light. From the light came two dogs of mine. One was a collie named Mimi who had died three years previously from an infection, and the other was a boxer named Sam who had died two years before after being hit by a car.” (Lynn)

3. Extraordinary NDE Tunnel Experiences

Thomas Sawyer‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “In this capacity, though, I was looking at absolute nothingness or darkness but my eyes were not straining. I had the desire to look around inquisitively. What is this place? Where am I? Well, again instantaneously, this darkness took the shape of a tunnel. It was perfectly level, however slightly ambiguous in that it was straight before me and it was cloud-like. It was very vast, as opposed to small and confining, and was anywhere from a thousand feet to a thousand miles wide. That didn’t matter to me but I want to give you some reference point. I was very comfortable and inquisitive. It was cylindrical. If you took a tornado and stretched it out straight, it would be similar to that, without the houses and the doors floating around inside. It absolutely extended to infinity. This measurement of infinity was the first empirical knowledge that I had within my near-death experience. Simultaneously with the awareness of this tunnel, I had a feeling of forward motion; it was very comfortable, it was very usual. Moving through this tunnel there was an acceleration. There was not any wind vibration, nor any noise. There was no motion sickness or anything like that. It was like floating within a vacuum. I saw that I was increasing speed, but there were no g-forces of the kind you would naturally experience in accelerating movement. I went faster and faster through the tunnel. The next empirical knowledge I had was that I had attained at least the speed of light or conceivably faster. Whisking through the tunnel at this speed, I had the depth perception, the visual perception of the tunnel whisking past me (or I through the tunnel). The next thing is that way, way off in the distance to infinity there appeared this little speck of light. That light was very special; it was the first identifiable object that I was able to focus on, to realize that it was nothing like what I’d seen before. It was extremely bright. This speck of light was brighter than something that would immediately blind you. It was brighter than a million billion carbon arcs, or welder’s torches, anything you can possibly compare it to. It was the brightest thing I’d ever seen in my life. There was a tremendous eager anticipation because this was the first thing that wasn’t blurry or ambiguous. The appearance of this light way off at the end of the tunnel brought me a sense of great love and a feeling of camaraderie. That was something extraordinary, greater than anything that I’d experienced during my thirty-three years of life. It was utter beauty.

Thomas Sawyer continues: “The light was way off in the distance and got larger as I got closer to it. I was eager to get closer to the light. I was still Thomas Sawyer, with all of my personality and characteristics, yet here I was, separate from the light by just a spatial measurement of visual connotation. Now being at the end of the tunnel and standing before the light, it seemed that it covered the entire vista before me. It was more beautiful than I’ve tried to describe, because I could use all the superlatives, and then I’d have to say: but it was more. I had never experienced anything that divine. It was white, possibly, blue-white, but certainly white. It was paradoxically absolutely everything. It included Thomas Sawyer. It included the tunnel that was behind me. It included the entire universe that I was ever aware of. It was absolutely, positively, everything. It was also absolutely the most beautiful thing that I’ve ever seen, that I’ve ever been near or experienced. The light I am describing is whatever most people would describe as God. That’s the description. It meant the same to me as the word God. It was in fact the light of Jesus Christ. From the onset of this rather super-conscious state of the darkness of the tunnel, there was something that was totally missing, and that was what we call time. There’s no such thing as time in heaven! The chronology of my accident is as I told you: there was the darkness, I was moving through the tunnel, and there was a light at the end of the tunnel. There was then a confrontation with the light at the end of the tunnel whatever more. That’s the chronology in that order … I know that I experienced a total life review, but I have never been able to fit it properly into any of that basic chronology. It had to have happened from the center of the tunnel or the movement within the tunnel, prior to what I call the confrontation with the light … What happened when I went through the tunnel? Did I see the face of Jesus Christ? Yes, I did. But the most important thing that I have been able to say is probably the aspect of total knowledge … At first it just seemed like a foggy grayness about me. As the speed of my upward and outward movement increased, the enclosing fog seemed to have a bright ending at the distance. I remember at the early moments of moving ahead through this enclosure a brightness to my left where I could see through the cloud-like tunnel. Beyond the walls of my tunnel was a shimmering, glowing light …My tunnel structure thinned along the sides but the light ahead was beckoning me. I was intensely attracted to reaching the light. As the sides of the tunnel became clearer, the light ahead became brighter and closer as my speed increased.” (Thomas Sawyer)

Rev. Howard Pittman‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “Suddenly we came to a most beautiful place. I know that I’ve already reported how terrible that second heaven was, so you can imagine how surprising it was to find anything beautiful over there. God would not allow me to retain the memory of why this place was so beautiful. I do remember that it was the most beautiful place I’d ever seen. This place looked like a tunnel, a roadway, a valley or some sort of highway. It had a most brilliant light all its own and was completely surrounded with an invisible shield. I knew that the invisible shield was the protection of the Holy Spirit. Walking in this tunnel, or along that roadway, or valley, or whatever, was what appeared to be human beings. I asked my escort who they were. He told me, ‘They are saints going home.’ These were the departed spirits of Christians who had died on earth and they were going home. Each of these saints was accompanied by at least one guardian angel and some had a whole host of angels with them. I wondered why some saints were accompanied by only one angel and others had many. I was watching as the saints passed through the way that all saints must take to go home. Here it was, the passageway from earth to the third heaven. Instead of allowing me to enter, the angel stationed me before the gates, slightly to one side. He instructed me to stay there and watch as the saints were permitted to enter into heaven. As the saints were allowed into heaven, I noticed a strange thing. They were permitted to enter only one at a time. No two were permitted to enter those gates at the same time. I wondered about this but it was never explained to me. When the last of the fifty saints had entered into the third heaven, I started to enter but my escort stopped me. He told me that if I entered I could not come out and that I would have to stay there until the Father brought me back. The angels told me that all who enter the third heaven must remain there until brought back to this physical world by Christ himself. When the angel said I could not enter unless I stayed.” (Rev. Howard Pittman)

Dr. Dianne Morrissey‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “As soon as I saw that the silver cord was attached to my physical body, my spirit body was thrust into a dark tunnel. I moved through it with great speed, traveling faster than I could have imagined possible. Although the tunnel was filled with an all consuming darkness, I felt peaceful and unafraid … When I came to the end of the darkness, I stepped into a new dimension. Here, I could sense the presence of a loving spirit, sent – I knew – to God to greet me. Then, I was back at the site of my physical body. Back and forth I traveled through the tunnel, several times in succession, moving from the Other Side to my electrocuted physical body and back again. Each time I emerged from the tunnel, I was met by a radiant angelic being who stood before me, smiling. The being had no wings, and I sense it was female. She was everything I’d ever dreamed an angel would be. As she moved toward me, I walked to meet her … Suddenly, my spirit body was back in tunnel. Again, when I emerged from the tunnel, the angelic being was waiting for me … I was suddenly thrust forward through the tunnel, and when I looked down, I was aghast to see my physical body below me … What mattered to me was the light. I wanted the light. I was again thrust forward through the tunnel. The angelic being was still there, waiting for me to truly decide about my life, waiting for me to decide about death, waiting for me to decide about my future … For some reason, however, the angelic being sent me into the tunnel again, back and forth through many tunnels. I wondered why. I still wanted to ‘touch,’ but I wanted the light – both desires tugging at my spirit … I finally found myself back in my house … Suddenly, I was rushing through the tunnel again. When I emerged, I was up near the ceiling in the den, looking down at my physical body below me. Then, without warning, I was thrust swiftly back into my body.” (Dr. Dianne Morrissey)

Virginia Rivers‘ NDE Tunnel Experience: From Dr. Kenneth Ring‘s wonderful book, Lessons From The Light: “Immediately the blackness began to erupt into a myriad of stars and I felt as if I were at the center of the universe with a complete panoramic view in all directions. The next instant I began to feel a forward surge of movement. The stars seemed to fly past me so rapidly that they formed a tunnel around me. I began to sense awareness, knowledge. The farther forward I was propelled the more knowledge I received. My mind felt like a sponge, growing and expanding in size with each addition. The knowledge came in single words and in whole idea blocks. I just seemed to be able to understand everything as it was being soaked up or absorbed. I could feel my mind expanding and absorbing and each new piece of information somehow seemed to belong. It was as if I had known already but forgotten or mislaid it, as if it were waiting here for me to pick it up on my way by. I kept growing with knowledge, evolving, expanding and thirsting for more. It was amazing, like being a child again and experiencing something brand new and beautiful, a wonderful new playground. As each second passed, there was more to learn, answers to questions, meanings and definitions, philosophies and reasons, histories, mysteries, and so much more, all pouring into my mind. I remember thinking, ‘I knew that, I know I did. Where has it all been?’ The stars began to change shapes before my eyes. They began to dance and deliberately draw themselves into intricate designs and colors which I had never seen before. They moved and swayed to a kind of rhythm or music with a quality and beauty I had never heard and yet … remembered. A melody that humans could not possibly have composed, yet was so totally familiar and in complete harmony with the very core of my being. As if it were the rhythm of my existence, the reason for my being. The extravagance of imagery and coloration pulsed in splendid unison with the magnificent ensemble. I felt completely at peace, tranquilized by the vision and the melodic drone. I could have stayed in this place for eternity with this pulse of love and beauty beating throughout my soul. The love poured into me from all corners of the universe. I was still being propelled forward at what seemed great speed. Yet I was able to observe all that I passed as if I were standing still. Each passing second I was absorbing more and more knowledge. No one spoke to me, nor did I hear voices in my head. The knowledge just seemed to BE and with each new awareness came a familiarity. A tiny pin point of light appeared far in front of me at the other end of my kaleidoscopic tunnel. The light grew larger and larger as I was soaring closer and closer to it, until finally I had arrived at my destination.” (Virginia Rivers)

Pam Reynolds’ NDE Tunnel Experience: “There was a sensation like being pulled, but not against your will. I was going on my own accord because I wanted to go. I have different metaphors to try to explain this. It was like the Wizard of Oz – being taken up in a tornado vortex, only you’re not spinning around like you’ve got vertigo. You’re very focused and you have a place to go. The feeling was like going up in an elevator real fast. And there was a sensation, but it wasn’t a bodily, physical sensation. It was like a tunnel but it wasn’t a tunnel. At some point very early in the tunnel vortex I became aware of my grandmother calling me. But I didn’t hear her call me with my ears … It was a clearer hearing than with my ears. I trust that sense more than I trust my own ears. The feeling was that she wanted me to come to her, so I continued with no fear down the shaft. It’s a dark shaft that I went through, and at the very end there was this very little tiny pinpoint of light that kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger. The light was incredibly bright, like sitting in the middle of a light bulb … My grandmother didn’t take me back through the tunnel, or even send me back or ask me to go. She just looked up at me. I expected to go with her, but it was communicated to me that she just didn’t think she would do that. My uncle said he would do it. He’s the one who took me back through the end of the tunnel. Everything was fine. I did want to go … It was communicated to me that it was like jumping into a swimming pool. No problem, just jump right into the swimming pool. I didn’t want to, but I guess I was late or something because he [the uncle] pushed me. I felt a definite repelling and at the same time a pulling from the body. The body was pulling and the tunnel was pushing …It was like diving into a pool of ice water … It hurt!” (Pam Reynolds)

Plato‘s NDE Account of the Solder Named Er and His Tunnel Experience: “When his soul went forth from his body he journeyed with a great company and that they came to a mysterious region where there were two openings side by side in the earth, and above and over against them in the heaven two others, and that judges were sitting between these, and that after every judgment they bade the righteous journey to the right and upward through the heaven with tokens attached to them in front of the judgment passed upon them, and the unjust to take the road to the left and downward, they too wearing behind signs of all that had befallen them, and that when he himself drew near they told him that he must be the messenger to humanity to tell them of that other world, and they charged him to give ear and to observe everything in the place … From the other tunnels came souls preparing for reincarnation on earth. From above came souls happily reporting delights and visions of a beauty beyond words. From below came souls lamenting and wailing over a thousand years of dreadful sufferings, where people were repaid manifold for any earthly suffering they had caused.” (Plato)

Diego Valencia‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “Suddenly, my mind was allowed to rest in a quiet place in order to further ascend through a translucent tunnel with a light that seemed rather a yellowish opacity. Then I saw many beings, some ascending, some descending. Two of them were known to me on the earth realm and I had not seen them for more than 20 years. I also met people unknown to me then, whom I met many years later in their bodies on the earth realm. I asked one of the two persons I did know, what he was doing there, and he told me he had had a very serious health problem, and almost died, but the health problem had already been solved by the doctors. This is the reason he was going back to his body. Nevertheless, another friend who was a friend of my family for many years, was leaving the earth realm in a definite way, so was I told. Then came some guides to take the friend who had been ill, back to earth through a tubular shape in descent. I also observed other tubular shapes through which other souls were ascending, and among them, the lady known to me and my family whose body had died. I inquired if the lady could go back but they said her time was over and that she had definitely left her body. I felt the energy of the lady perturbed, because she was confused since she did not know she was dead, but I avoided meeting her. In that moment my guides smiled. A different lap started in which the path was transparent, silent and compliant. I felt the pleasure of having my conscience in total calm, together with the tender but distant company of the guides and other entities which I could not see. Suddenly I saw another path where all the dead members of my family appeared, among them my father.” (Diego Valencia)

Robert Coleman‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “I was being propelled across a vast distance. I dare not look straight ahead, but I remember looking at the wall flashing past me as I sped along some kind of tunnel. Then, at the other end of this journey, I felt a most beautifully reassuring sense of calm. I looked down at myself in my new form. I had taken on a golden glow. I did not need to walk. I floated. Everything about me was love, goodness and warmth. Suddenly, I felt as if I had been given access to the total knowledge of the universe. I stared at a huge dark wheel containing stars and other celestial bodies that slowly revolved. A deep voice spoke slowly, but I could not make out what it was saying. I was at some kind of entrance … I had to promise solemnly not to try to return. I agreed. Once more, I stood in front of the great dark disk again. As the stars and shapes slowly revolved, a deep voice said slowly, ‘Your time has not yet come.’ I felt all the wisdom that I had suddenly gained was being forced out from me. I knew I could not take this knowledge back with me, but was concerned that I might lose what limited intelligence I already had before I died. Then, once again I was in the long tunnel, feeling the wind against my cheek as I looked away and saw the long wall rushing past me.” (Robert Coleman)

Webmaster’s Note: The great dark disk may be the entrance to the tunnel. Other experiencers have seen the tunnel in the same kind of thing in their NDEs. (Kevin Williams)

Reinee Pasarow‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “At this point I became aware that there was a light calling me from somewhere else and I entered what people speak of as the tunnel. I will speak of it as that although I did not quite perceive it as a tunnel. It was a transition place where I became aware of other beings who seemed to be rather disoriented, rather confused and lost and some of these beings were moving through to their home. I simply wanted to go home. I moved through this place and I became aware that I was not moving like we move physically. When we move physically we have an intent, we have a goal, and we move step by step to that goal. But what moved me through this place was love. It was the love of God and the love all things sacred and all things beautiful and all things just. I could go on and on and on but this was what propelled me on. It was my connection and my affection for God. As I came to the end of this place, I wondered if I would be alone, and just like that I was with my uncle …” [After her life review, the Being of Light told her, “It was not time for her to enter that world.” She then described returning to her physical body.] “I was catapulted back down what I perceived to be a tunnel. This time it was down a rainbow tunnel of light, sound and vibrational frequency of love. With a terribly hard crash, I became aware of the scene I had left earlier – the fire trucks, and now an ambulance. There were men who were picking up my body and loading it into the ambulance. I was in a state of complete grief. I felt that I had become Eve and was cast out of the garden of Eden. As I was descending down this tunnel, my heart was already attached to my home beyond. I was begging not to leave. I crashed down into this realm of existence and was suddenly confused by time and space … I was being propelled across a vast distance. I dare not look straight ahead, but I remember looking at the wall flashing past me as I sped along some kind of tunnel. Then, at the other end of this journey, I felt a most beautifully reassuring sense of calm. (Reinee PasarowWatch her video on YouTube)

Lou Famoso‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “I entered what I thought looked like the Holland tunnel without the cars and traffic and the ability to see what looked like light at its end. It was dark but not black. The path was slightly illuminated from what I thought to be the sunlight shining from the other end. As I was being drawn toward the lighted end of the tunnel, I carefully looked around, even squinting to see into the darker recesses. I passed what I thought to be very religious men doing what they would do when praying to their GODS. They were all dressed in their finest garbs, robes, togas, head dresses, loin cloths and the like. Most of them were off to the sides of the tunnel, but one of them, that I seemed to float right over, looked oriental with a long grayish Fu Man Chu, sitting there in the middle of the tunnel with his hands clasped and his feet crossed … When I floated past the monk just below me, I thought he could actually see me because it appeared like he began to smile a smile of passage. All the other religious men were mumbling sounds of prayer and were moving their arms about as if making gestures of a blessing. I wasn’t sure if they were blessing me or the tunnel. I noticed none of them were actually standing or sitting in the tunnel but appeared to be levitated. I wanted to stop and speak with some of them, maybe ask a few questions like who they were and how long have they been here, but I was being whisked away toward the light. I saw wisps of smoke I believed to be incense. It came from all portions of the great tunnel from one end to the other. I could see and smell, but I had yet to have the sensation of touch since my feet were never touching the tunnels floor. I seemed to be traveling squarely in the center as I drifted toward the end. The closer I got to the end of the tunnel, the brighter things got, and as I neared the end, it was like coming face to face with a huge canvas that was just recently blazed in the brightest white of whites. An empty canvas, ready to be painted upon and I awaited that painting … The being told me that should I ever have questions of the heart or mind, he will answer them if I only look within myself, for that is where he will dwell. From this time forward I need only think it to be so, and it will be so, for I would forever know the truth … I asked how I would know and before I received an answer I was being whisked away through that darkened tunnel like a dust bunny in a vacuum, with about as much control as a runaway freight train. A loving voice was telling me I must go back today. (Lou Famoso)

Gilles Bedard‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “In the blink of an eye, my vision expanded and I went into a place like a cosmos where there were 12 people standing in a half-circle. They were all pure white lights and they had no faces. Beyond them was a tunnel. I wasn’t afraid. I somehow knew these people although they weren’t family or people I could recognize. It was as if they were waiting for me. I asked them what was happening, and they told me, ‘You are not going to die. You are going back to earth. You have something to do.’ I asked them what it was, and as soon as I asked it was as if I knew the answer. They said I would know what I had to do when the time came. At that moment, I could sense the future and I realized I had the choice to do what I wanted to do. I felt pure peace. What I remembered most is the music I heard when I was out of my body. It was fascinating. It was hard to tell how long the experience lasted. It could have been five seconds or half an hour. When I came back into my body, it felt very small. But it was OK. I felt calm, very warm. When I came to, around 5 a.m., I felt ready for a party. It was as if nothing had happened to me. I didn’t remember the experience at that time. But a month after I left the hospital, I had another one. During the night, I had a sensation of falling into a tunnel. Going into it, I knew I was about to die, but just before arriving at the end of the tunnel, I woke up. It was not a dream. It was real. And it was then that I remembered the earlier experience.” (Gilles Bedard)

Don Brubaker‘s NDE Tunnel Experience: “There was a sudden whoosh, and I saw a large glowing red ball approaching me, almost like the light on the front of a train. In that instant, as the red ball rushed toward me, I knew terror like never before. As it approached, I realized that it was really a large, eerie red eye. It stopped when it got close to me, and then began traveling alongside me through the tunnel. I could hardly stand to look at it, its gaze was so piercing. It felt like it was looking right into my mind, into my very soul. Still I was plunging into the depths of this horrible tunnel. I glanced at the walls of the tunnel, walls of deep black whirring past me like video footage on fast forward. Yes, I was still there, still falling millions of miles into some terrible pit. And yet, there I was, lying death-like on a hospital bed. I could see myself there, and it panicked me all the more. The eye – suddenly I realized that I was seeing the hospital room through the red eye. It was absurd to me that I hadn’t realized this before – and yet I could hardly process my thoughts. It was all too bizarre. Panic started building in my mind as it began to dawn on me where I was, suspended in this dank tube. As the red eye glowered at me, the thoughts began to arrange themselves, coalescing slowly. Suddenly, the idea was undeniable. I was in hell. The realization swept over me like an ocean wave, unstoppable though I tried desperately to dismiss it. Hell! I didn’t even believe in hell! And here I was? This was it? I had only the briefest moment to react to the thought when a deep, comfortable voice echoed through the tunnel.” (Don Brubaker)

Lynnclaire Dennis‘ NDE Tunnel Experience: “It was then that I saw the tunnel and knew with absolute assurance that I was on my way home, certain that the home I had long yearned for was in the light at the other end of this passageway. As I was standing alone with my grandmother, she told me that I must make this part of the journey alone. Filled with peace, I knew I would see her again on the other side. I was ready, and without hesitation took my first step into the corridor that led toward the light, crossing an intersection that connected now with forever … Once I was inside the tunnel it was as if someone at the other end was calling my name, drawing me forward. I knew that this passageway was taking me to the top of the mountain, leading me home into the light. I was overjoyed to be going to the summit, as all my life I had wanted to climb to the top of Mt. Rainier. I had never made the attempt, believing that I would try and fail, or that I would die trying. I moved effortless into the passage. Soon I knew I would be able to fly. Fly? The light was getting brighter and warmer as I moved through the tunnel. The MUSIC, the celestial symphony, continued to fill the air with a psalm of Oneness, played on unseen instruments of peace. I arrived at the pinnacle and, standing at the entrance to the light, took a single step, leaving my right footprint imbedded in Eternity. I entered a sacred space a place where I knew I had returned to my most essential nature, where I felt wholly and consciously united with all things and Source, where a soothing balm of peace was poured on my spirit by an unseen hand, an emollient so rich in love that to this day I cannot fully absorb or comprehend it.” (Lynnclaire Dennis)

4. Edgar Cayce’s Extraordinary NDE Tunnel Experiences

Edgar Cayce was a man who, over the span of his lifetime (1877-1945), had more out-of-body journeys into the afterlife than anyone ever documented. Cayce (pronounced “Kay-see”) learned that when he was put in a special form of self-hypnotic trance, he could leave his body and journey into the afterlife realms. Cayce made over 14,000 otherworldly journeys in his life and the information he gained from these journeys has astounded people all over the world.

Edgar Cayce‘s NDE Tunnel Experiences: “I see myself as a tiny dot out of my physical body, which lies inert before me. I find myself oppressed by darkness and there is a feeling of terrific loneliness. Suddenly, I am conscious of a white beam of light, knowing that I must follow it or be lost. As I move along this path of light I gradually become conscious of various levels upon which there is movement. Upon the first levels there are vague, horrible shapes, grotesque forms such as one sees in nightmares. Passing on, there begins to appear on either side misshapen forms of human beings with some part of the body magnified. Again there is change and I become conscious of gray-hooded forms moving downward. Gradually, these become lighter in color. Then the direction changes and these forms move upward and the color of the robes grows rapidly lighter. Next, there begins to appear on either side vague outlines of houses, walls, trees, etc., but everything is motionless. As I pass on, there is more light and movement in what appear to be normal cities and towns. With the growth of movement I become conscious of sounds, at first indistinct rumblings, then music, laughter, and singing of birds. There is more and more light, the colors become very beautiful, and there is the sound of wonderful music. The houses are left behind; ahead there is only a blending of sound and color. Quite suddenly I come upon a Hall of Records. It is a hall without walls, without ceiling, but I am conscious of seeing an old man who hands me a large book, a record of the individual for whom I seek information.” (Edgar Cayce)

On another occasion, Cayce’s tunnel experience was described this way: Cayce felt himself to be a bubble traveling through water to arrive at the place where he always got the information. (Edgar Cayce)

On yet another occasion, Cayce’s tunnel experience was described this way: “Cayce went up and up through a very large column, passing by all the horrible things without coming in contact personally with them, and came out where there was the house of records. Cayce stated that as he ascended the column, there would be beings on either side of him calling out to him for help or trying to get his attention. Cayce knew that any deviation from the column and the beam of light would mean he would not be able to return to his body. It, the column, wound around on a wheel like the Rotarians have. Cayce mentioned that he felt very secure traveling that way.” (Edgar Cayce)

Kevin Williams’ Analysis of Cayce’s NDE Tunnel Experiences: “Edgar Cayce did not experience clinical or brain death, but he was able to control his mind to travel consciously through the identical process of the near-death state. This can be done by anyone, according to Cayce, if the “proper attunement” is made. Cayce also mentions that this is done by everyone when they fall asleep and enter the realm of dreams, only it is done subconsciously not consciously. The same is true for death. Cayce’s experience reveals more aspects about the nature of the tunnel so often described in near-death experiences and more about the structure of the afterlife. One of the afterlife levels that Cayce observed while in the tunnel appears to be like our own except it is motionless. In my opinion, this motionless afterlife level is the physical realm. While Cayce journeys through the tunnel and the eternal now, time on earth stands still. This principle can even be found in Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. The afterlife level Cayce sees where human beings appear with some body part magnified has been described in the Tibetan Book of the Dead and other religious traditions as being hell. It is a place where a particular desire has been overemphasized while in physical life. The level where hooded monk-like beings appear has also been described by many other near-death experiencers such as Dr. George Ritchie and Betty Eadie. Cayce was able to describe very accurately some of the various levels of the afterlife that appear in near-death accounts.” (Kevin Williams)

5. Skeptic Susan Blackmore on the NDE Tunnel

One of the most dedicated skeptical researchers of near-death experiences is Susan Blackmore, a senior lecturer in psychology at the University of the West of England, a parapsychologist, and Zen Buddhist. She is also one of the few researchers who have actually had an out-of-body experience. During her first year at Oxford, Blackmore had an OBE after several hours on the Ouija board while stoned on hashish. The experience also occurred during a period of her life when sleep deprivation was common for her. She describes herself as having been in “a fairly peculiar state of mind” when she had the OBE. Despite her experience, she continues to believe it was all merely part of her hallucination experience. As a former heavy marijuana and hashish user, I (Kevin Williams) can tell you that Blackmore’s OBE is not an example of marijuana or hashish intoxication. Rather, it is more like an OBE triggered by a more “harder” hallucinogen such as LSD or ketamine. The following is a brief description of Susan Blackmore’s OBE / NDE-like experience, and responses from a critic I received by email which I thought to be interesting. You can read Blackmore’s full OBE account here.

Susan Blackmore‘s OBE Tunnel Experience: Susan Blackmore traveled down a tunnel of trees toward a light, floated on the ceiling and observed her body below, saw a silver cord connecting her floating astral body, floated out of a building in England and crossed the ocean to New York. After hovering around New York, Blackmore floated back to her room in England where she became very small and entered her body’s toes. Then she grew very big, as big as a planet at first, and then she filled the solar system and finally she became as large as the universe. Despite her experience, Blackmore believes the tunnel is caused by oxygen starvation, which causes certain cells in the brain, inhibitory cells, to die first, the excitable ones taking longer. (Susan Blackmore)

Blackmore discusses drugs including her own experience: “Under conditions of extreme tiredness and smoking hashish I had an NDE-type experience complete with the tunnel and light, out-of-body travels, expansion and contraction of size, timelessness, a mystical experience and the decision to return…”

Critic of Blackmore’s Dying Brain Theory: “Blackmore uses her drug-induced experiences as the basis for her conclusions. I shall argue that Blackmore’s confusion on the subject of NDEs is the result of her own drug-induced confusion — which is not an uncommon occurrence.”

Blackmore: [Concerning NDErs passing through a tunnel of mental energy] “There are many serious problems with such a theory. If the other worlds are a part of this world then they cannot really account for the afterlife.”

Critic: “Such a conclusion proves false when we consider the reports of NDErs. They not only see ethereal energy patterns, they see this world, the world of operating rooms and other mundane settings.”

Blackmore: “Something should be seen leaving the body and going into the tunnel. The tunnel itself would be present in physical space and we should be able to measure it or in some way detect its presence.”

Critic: “Yes, and that’s why those skilled at observing the subtle energy that surrounds the spirit are able to perceive such things.”

Blackmore: “Still we should not reject such theories out of hand just because they seem senseless. It is better to apply some criteria to them and see how they fare. Is this theory specific? No, not at all. The tunnels described are all different in precise form and this theory can say nothing about what forms they should or should not take.”

Critic: “Blackmore again looks at content, not underlying phenomena. The structure of specific tunnels is not in question, as has been stated, they are mental constructs, mental or ethereal energy patterns. As such they take many malleable forms. Blackmore fails to understand such mental energy is NOT confined to a brain, but rather is patterned energy that makes up a mind, not a brain.”

Categories
Research Conclusions Science

Time and the Near-Death Experience

What is time? Is it a measure of the movement of the sun across the sky? Is it a ratio of numbers on a clock that represents change from one state to another? Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity proved that time is subjective to a person’s own relative position of reference. Einstein’s theory even allows for time travel which is an aspect of many reported near-death experiences. The following is a brief introduction of all the insights concerning time from near-death experiencers profiled on this website.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction to Time After Death
  2. Time as Experienced by Those Having an NDE
  3. NDE References to Time Travel
  4. More NDE References to Time
  5. John Star’s Extraordinary NDE Concerning Time

1. Introduction to Time After Death

After death when we enter the spirit realm, it feels as though we were there just a moment ago. Our time on earth seems like only a brief instance. Time in the spirit realm does not exist. By getting rid of the illusion of time from our minds, we have the power to expand our consciousness. We will realize that we are already living in timelessness right now. This means a person can remain in heaven for eternity if they desire before deciding whether to return for another earth life. In the spirit realm, if we desire, we can travel instantaneously from the beginning of earth history to the end. We have the power to grow forever. We are powerful spiritual beings.

2. Time as Experienced by Those Having an NDE

“The fact of a pre-earth life crystallized in my mind, and I saw that death was actually a “rebirth” into a greater life … that stretched forward and backward through time.” (Betty Eadie)

Jan Price wrote: “Time’s measurement on the physical plane is based on the vibration rate of cesium atoms, which was approved by international agreement in 1964. On the Other Side, time is simply the sequence of activity recorded in consciousness. And since our awareness is on a higher frequency in that world, progression (what we see happening) is greatly accelerated. In some situations it would seem to be at the speed of light. In his book ‘Return from Tomorrow,’ George Ritchie, M.D., writes about his life review during a near-death experience: ‘There were other scenes, hundreds, thousands, all illuminated by that searing Light, in an existence where time seemed to have ceased. It would have taken weeks of ordinary time even to glance at so many events, and yet I had no sense of minutes passing.’ The specified lengths of time that we on Earth call seconds, minutes, hours, days, and so forth do not apply over there. The Bible’s definition of God’s time (the plane of heaven) is that one thousand years equals one day – a remarkable extension of third-dimensional time. I was out of my body for close to four minutes. If we agree with the Bible equation, that would be about three years on the higher plane. That seems like an awfully long time for my particular experience; maybe I just didn’t adjust to ‘heavenly time’ the way others have. For example, in the book Intra Muros by NDE experiencer Rebecca Ruter Springer says: ‘Days lengthened into weeks, and weeks into months, and these in turn crept into years, and the duties and joys of heaven grew clearer and dearer with each passing hour.” (Jan Price)

“It does not matter that we leave family and friends behind because time becomes irrelevant. It is certain that once we enter the spirit realm, it will be just a blink of the eye before they join us.” (Mac Wright)

“Before we’re born, we have to take an oath that we will pretend time and space are real so we can come here and advance our spirit. If you don’t promise, you can’t be born.” (Jeanie Dicus)

“Space and time are illusions that hold us to the physical realm; in the spirit realm, all is present simultaneously.” (Beverly Brodsky)

“Time did not make any sense. Time did not seem to apply. It seemed irrelevant. It was unattached to anything, the way I was. Time is only relevant when it is relative to the normal orderly sequential aspects of life. So I was there for a moment or for eternity. I cannot say but it felt like a very long time to me.” (Grace Bubulka)

“During an NDE, you can’t tell if you were in that light for a minute of a day or a hundred years.” (Jayne Smith)

“Earthly time has no meaning in the spirit realm. There is no concept of before or after. Everything – past, present, future – exists simultaneously.” (Kimberly Clark-Sharp)

“From the onset of this rather superconscious state of the darkness of the tunnel, there was something that was totally missing, and that was what we call time. There’s no such thing as time in heaven! As I thought of and formulated a desire or a question, it would already have been recognized, acknowledged, and therefore answered. And the dialogue that took place, took place in no time. It didn’t require a fifteen-minute duration in time; it simply happened.” (Thomas Sawyer)

3. NDE References to Time Travel

Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity allows for the possibility of time travel. During an NDE, some people have reported traveling back in time and some have reported traveling into the future.

Don Brubaker’s Time Travel Near-Death Experience:

Christ says to Don Brubaker, “Don, do you want to stay or go back?”

“I want to go back,” I answered immediately, knowing I made the right choice.

Jesus smiles. “You have chosen well. Go. I am with you,” Jesus says gently.

Everything changes again, as if someone has turned a page in a book. I see myself in the midst of a huge crowd. It’s not a modern crowd. They are dressed in the clothes of Bible times. I look down at myself. So am I.
The crowd seems to be jeering at me. Why? Then I see more: I help a man, someone who has been brutally whipped and abused. The crowd is upset because I am offering assistance. But the beaten man has eyes that burn with love and compassion.

How could anyone want to hurt this man? I lift the man off of the dusty road to his feet.

The man turns, and from somewhere he lifts a huge wooden cross to his back. The man begins moving toward a hill. The hill is called Golgotha. With each new moment, I realize more and more clearly what I am seeing. These people are going to crucify Christ.

I follow, stunned, I watch in horror as Jesus is nailed to the cross, the spikes pounded through his wrists and the sensitive insteps of his feet. I watch helpless as the cross is propped up and dropped into position with an ugly thud. I cover my face with my hands.

If only others could see what I’ve seen. The world would get on its knees … The world would be at peace. (Don Brubaker)

George Rodonaia wrote: “Everything in this experience merged together, so it is difficult for me to put an exact sequence to events. Time as I had known it came to a halt; past, present, and future were somehow fused together for me in the timeless unity of life … I could be anywhere instantly, really there … I felt it necessary to learn about the Bible and philosophy. You want, you receive. Think and it comes to you. So I participated, I went back and lived in the minds of Jesus and his disciples. I heard their conversations, experienced eating, passing wine, smells, tastes – yet I had no body. I was pure consciousness. If I didn’t understand what was happening, an explanation would come. But no teacher spoke. I explored the Roman Empire, Babylon, the times of Noah and Abraham. Any era you can name, I went there.” (Dr. George Rodonaia)

The light replied, “Let us go back in time, as far back as possible, and tell me how far back we should go”. I was thinking for some time. Eventually I blurted out, “Stone Age?” I did not have much time to think about all this, because, all of a sudden, I saw human beings back on earth. I was looking down on a group of people, men and women, who were dressed in furs, sitting around campfire. (Guenter Wagner)

“The box opened to reveal what appeared to be a tiny television picture of a world event that was yet to happen. As I watched, I felt myself drawn right into the picture, where I was able to live the event. This happened twelve times, and twelve times I stood in the midst of many events that would shake the world in the future.” (Dannion Brinkley)

4. More NDE References to Time

Going through the tunnel during an NDE means traveling through the various afterlife realms. One of the realms that you can see on either side of the tunnel, is an outline of houses, walls, trees, etc., but everything is motionless. As you travel further up the tunnel, you can see more light and movement in what appear to be normal cities and towns. (Edgar Cayce)

Webmaster’s note: Cayce didn’t mention it, but the motionless realm he saw, I believe, is the physical realm. If it is, then it shows how time stands still in the physical realm when entering the spirit realm.

“An expansion of consciousness can be achieved through meditation. With this expansion comes the realization that we are in eternity now.” (Edgar Cayce)

“There is no time and space in the spiritual world. If one is in the highest realms, love reigns. And where there is love, there is happiness. Where there is happiness, there is no awareness of time. Therefore, there is no time as we know it there. In the lower realms, because people are very unhappy, time seems to drag forever. There is space, but it is a reflection of the qualities of the people who live there. Where love reigns, there is no distance between people.” (Nora Spurgin)

Harvey Green wrote: “The occupants in outer darkness are there for various lengths of time. It is peculiar to discuss length of residence by a measure which does not exist in that dimension. For most of us it is very difficult to relate to a timeless condition, so the use of finite terms helps us to better understand. Some residents feel they have been in outer darkness for weeks or months, others for eons. No doubt all are correct in their assessment of length of time spent in this realm. In a reality of pain and torment, even a moment can seem like an eternity and there is no way to judge length of stay until after one has long departed. Some souls have occupied outer darkness for what we would measure as hundreds, even thousands of years. But it is more likely that most stay for a considerably shorter period. It is not possible for souls to be forever confined to outer darkness, since in such a case there would be no hope of redemption.” (Harvey Green)

“In the void during an NDE, there is a profound stillness, beyond all silence. You can see or perceive FOREVER, beyond Infinity, in pre-creation, before the Big Bang, in the Eye of Creation. It is like toughing the Face of God and being at one with Absolute Life and Consciousness. You can experience all of creation generating itself. It is without beginning and without end. You realize the Big Bang is only one of an infinite number of Big Bangs creating Universes endlessly and simultaneously. The only images that even come close in human terms would be those created by supercomputers using fractal geometry equations. You learn that you are an immortal being and a part of a natural living system that recycles itself endlessly.” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

P.M.H. Atwater wrote: “Time and space exists only in the physical realm. When you leave the physical realm, you leave such constraints. Existence there is never ending and ongoing, forever and ever eternal. The only true movement is without the distortion of time and space. It is expansion and contraction, as if the existence that exists were capable of breathing. What appears as a progression, a time-line of starts and stops and ever-changing variations, is but an overleaf, an illusion, that helps us to focus on whatever realm we currently inhabit so that we will accomplish what we set out to do (or at least have an opportunity to), and not be distracted by The Truth that under-girds reality. Using radio as an analogy, dying to this physical realm and entering a spirit realm is comparable to having lived all your life at a certain radio frequency when all of a sudden someone or something comes along and flips the dial. That flip shifts you to different frequency. The original frequency where you once existed is still there. It did not change. Everything is still just the same as it was. Only you changed, only you speeded up to allow entry into the next radio frequency on the dial. You then fit into your particular spot on the dial by your speed of vibration. You cannot coexist forever where you do not belong. (P.M.H. Atwater)

“When you die, you enter eternity. It feels like you were always there, and you will always be there. You realize that existence on earth is only just a brief instant.” (Dr. Kenneth Ring)

“After death, you can literally travel at the speed of light and see all of the people on earth simultaneously in one moment. You can see people in all manner of activity instantaneously. You can see people praying in mosques and temples, synagogues, and churches. You can see people individually expressing their own silent prayers. You can see indigenous tribes in all different parts of the world drumming and chanting. You can see God sending multitudes of angels to earth to assist in answering all of the countless, millions of prayers being offered up at that single moment.” (Dr. Liz Dale)

“When you die, everything stops and you enter eternity. It is like finally getting to the nanosecond, where time stops. Like a watch, our body stops at that time. Yet our spirit and consciousness continue to live on in a dimension beyond sequential time. We go beyond nanoseconds into a space-time measurement we cannot know here on earth. It is the eternal now where past, present, and future are all merged into one. Eternity is the present, the now that never ends.” (Dr. Gerard Landry)

“After death, you can go through the end of time all the way back through the beginning of time, then back into the present time where you started. It lasted forever, and was over in an instant. It is a paradox.” (Dee Rohe)

“After death, you can view one afterlife realm as if it was first grade. People stay there until they were ready to go to the next afterlife realm. This is the eternal progression, from one realm to the next.” (Cecil)

“The sense of timelessness after death makes you feel unaware of how long things last, but it can feel like a long time – maybe days or maybe weeks.” (Howard Storm)

“Everything in the spirit realm is kept in place by an all pervading Master-Vibration which prevents aging. Things don’t get dirty or wear out. Everything looks so bright and new. You can then understand how heaven is eternal.” (Arthur Yensen)

“In the spirit realm, travel takes no time at all. Any experience can seem like eons. But that same experience also seems like seconds.” (Dr. George Ritchie)

“In the spirit realm, It can take eons of time as we understand it before some people go into the light. It depends on the person. You’re in control. You hold the reins. Those who’ve come through those darker levels have said that they’ve had to face themselves and realize that if they don’t shape up, in other words, learn more about themselves, they’re not getting anywhere.” (George Anderson)

“Space and time are illusions that hold us to this physical realm. In the spirit realm, all is present simultaneously.” (Beverly Brodsky)

“After death, each person shapes their own eternity to correspond with their real inner nature. Some are taught by their friends about the state of eternal life.” (Emanuel Swedenborg)

“One experience in the spirit realm can feel like forever. Time no longer seems to apply and seems irrelevant. Time is only relevant when it is relative to the normal orderly sequential aspects of life. The experience can feel like a moment and an eternity. You realize that you are eternal and indestructible. You realize that you have always been, that you always will be, and there was no way you could ever be lost. It is impossible to fall into a crack in the universe somewhere and never be heard from again. You are utterly safe and always have been forever and ever.” (Jayne Smith)

“Life is about having experiences forever and ever and ever. As we bring this awareness permanently into our consciousness, our connection with God will be there and not somewhere in our unconscious. We will be consciously aware of who we are all the time.” (Jayne Smith)

“The experience lasted for hours or eons and now it seems that eons passed in only moments.” (Virginia Rivers)

“We wandered in this beautiful place for what seemed an eternity.” (Karen Schaeffer)

“The experience was a few seconds, but it seemed like an eternity.” (Rev. Kenneth Hagin)

“In the spirit realm, time and space becomes nothing more than attenuated wisps of human invention. Both were webs of light created in my consciousness.” (Lynnclaire Dennis)

“The human spirit is eternal and we are not alone in the cosmic scheme of things.” (Brad Steiger)

“In the spirit realm, people don’t talk about time. They talk about opportunity. People don’t think about time because it is not measured off in days and nights and months and years.” (Margaret Tweddell)

“Our souls are immortal and eternal.” (Sandra Rogers)

“Many events of eternity can pass through you. You can bathe in them and become them. They can be infused into your soul.” (RaNelle Wallace)

“We are intricately connected to all that exists throughout eternity.” (Jan Price)

“On the other side, one event follows another just like on earth. But looking at it another way, time on the other side doesn’t pass at all because there is not enough change to make the passage of time evident. From another viewpoint, time in the afterlife stands still because it is always now. The past and future are of equal length because there never was a beginning and never can be an end. This flexibility of time on the other side can be compared to the earth experience when a person is enjoying themselves and time just seems to fly by. But another person having the same experience but who is absolutely miserable, time can seem to last forever. As Einstein discovered, time is a factor that is relative to a person’s own experience.” (Kevin Williams)

“I glanced at my wrist to note the time, since there was no sun in the sky. My wrist had no watch on it, nor was there any telltale evidence of a watchband … A strange sense of timelessness gripped me. It was simply awesome! … We exist here in that timelessness, the eternity of God, the kind of life that does not perish! It is our gift of love, eternal life!” (Dr. Richard Eby)

“There is an overall awareness of the earth’s future as it will be in six weeks, six months, or perhaps two years ahead. It is like being in an airplane looking down, and you can get a prevision of what is going to happen, due to being able to see things in broader perspective. However, there is not a complete vision of the entire future of earth. But there are souls in the spirit realm who, through much tribulation and service, have been permitted to see the earth’s future in a more extended way.” (Margaret Tweddell)

“Time is not linear. Energy moves in a continuum and if we would consider the past as a time passed we would release pain from the body. We get stuck because we stay in the past, instead of realizing that we have passed!” (Lynnclaire Dennis)

5. John Star’s Extraordinary NDE Concerning Time

One day, without any warning, John Star found himself face to face with the fact that life in this world is terminal. He was swimming in Lake Michigan about half a mile offshore when he got in trouble. He was swimming free style, like he had done at swimming competitions, when he turned his head to breathe and inhaled water from an oncoming wave. His lungs were full of water when he wondered if he could swim half a mile at top speed without breathing. He tried. What resulted was an extraordinary near-death experience and a miraculous return to life. Here is the account of his near-death experience.

“I had only gone a few yards when my head began to buzz and I felt dizzy. A few yards more and I heard a loud snap. Suddenly the world was calm and clear. I could see the shoreline, still in the distance and noticed the sun shining overhead. It seemed brighter than usual. When I looked down I got the surprise of my life. There was my body, still swimming toward shore, moving as straight and smooth as a motor boat. I watched for a while, indifferent to the plight of my body. I was far more concerned with trying to figure out where I was.

“I noticed a light coming from somewhere behind me. It was a peculiar light. It had feeling. When I turned to see where this light was coming from, it would remain behind me. Somehow though, I managed to get turned around so I could look right into the light.

“The light was delicious. I soaked it up like a dry sponge soaks up water. I felt like I had been sealed up in a vacuum packed jar for as long as I could remember. Now the jar was opened and the pressure was gone. I could breathe again. I could feel energy flowing into me, loosening and softening parts of my being that I did not even know I had. My whole being thrilled with well-being and joy. A feeling that I had known before, though I could not remember where or when.

“Time itself seemed to be softening. For as long as I could remember, the minutes, days and years of my life seemed to be fixed, like the markings on a steel ruler. Now, the measuring stick of time was becoming soft and flexible. It would stretch and shrink, like a rubber band. I could return to events of my past, examining them with greater clarity and detail than when they had originally happened, lingering there for what seemed like hours. But then, when I would return to where I was, it seemed like no time at all had gone by. Back and forth I went. Deep into episodes of my personal history, and then back into the light.

“Time could also be contracted, I found. Centuries would condense into seconds. Millenniums would shrink into moments. The entire civilization that I was part of passed by in the blink of an eye.

“‘Look at that,’ I marveled. ‘The whole civilization is no more permanent and no more important that a patch of wild flowers! It’s so simple from here, and so beautiful. Whether it is a patch of wild flowers or a mighty civilization, the process is the same. It is only life, trying out different shapes and then returning from where it came.’

“I was being pulled into the light. Or was it that the world and the life that I knew was receding, the life that I had come to assume was the only life there is. All of my certainties and all of my doubts, all of my pride and all of my guilt, all of my pleasures and all of my fears, were all fading away. All that remained was the light and the awesome feeling of well-being that the light contained. It felt like I was waking up, like I had been in a deep sleep, dreaming an intense and detailed dream when somebody came into the room and turned on the lights. Now I was waking up and the dream was fading away.

“As my sleepy eyes slowly became adjusted to the brilliant radiance, I could make out shapes in the light. There were people there! People that I knew and loved. The place was completely familiar, as though I had been there just a few moments before.

“‘Did you have a nice rest?’ one of my friends asked.

“My other friends broke out into roaring laughter. They were making a joke. They all knew what a grueling ordeal such ventures into the material world can be. They had all made such ventures themselves, many times before. I joined in the laughter. How good it felt to laugh so freely. How strange, to be so open, and yet it was all so familiar. I was totally alive again – an aliveness that was beyond beginning and ending – an aliveness that was eternal.

“The world that I had entered was now as solid and real as the world that I had left behind, but the light was still visible. It was a living light. It had vitality and feeling. It was focused in every living thing just as the sun can be focused to a point with a magnifying glass. There were colors, too, not only the colors that I had known on Earth but many octaves of color. Surrounding all my friends and every other living thing was color, arranged in intricate geometrical patterns, each pattern unique, every pattern original. Permeating the colors and patterns was sound, countless octaves of sound. It was as though the colors could be heard. It reminded me of bagpipes. Filling the entire region were the droning sounds. Octave upon octave of invigorating, vitalizing sound. It was very subtle, practically imperceptible but immense, it seemed to reach to infinity. Superimposed on this vast life-giving hum was the melody, which was created by the individual sound of every living thing. Light and sound, color and geometrical patterns were all combined into a totality of harmonic perfection.

“It seemed like years had gone by. There was no way to tell, though, whether it had been minutes, hours or years. Where I was now, be-ing was the only reality. Be-ing, which was inseparable from the moment, inseparable from the eternal NOW, inseparable from the life that was in all other beings. Even though this place was as solid and real as the world I left behind, time and space was not an obstacle.

“To an animal, a closed door is an insurmountable obstacle. They do not have the faculties necessary to overcome such a barrier. In the world that I had left behind, time and space were just such an insurmountable obstacle. I did not have the faculties necessary to overcome such a barrier. Now I was free, like an animal that had learned how to work a doorknob. I could go in and out of worlds without getting stuck. I could stay inside as long as I wanted. I could become acquainted with people that lived there and get to know their particular customs and their curious opinions, conclusions and beliefs. Then I could leave that world and return to a world without end – a place where there were no opinions, conclusions, or beliefs. It was a place where there was only be-ing, a place of awesome beauty and joy, a place of total harmonic perfection.

“Images of my former life began to flicker in my mind. Fleeting images at first, but now they were growing stronger and clearer. Visions of people who were dear to me that I had left behind. Visions of things I wanted to see and things I had wanted to do. From somewhere deep within my being, a powerful voice welled up:

“You have seen enough of eternity. It’s not time yet for you to stay. Return now to the Land of Shadows where the mortal creatures play and be a puff of dust in the wind without being blown away.”

Whoooshshsssss, whoooshshsssss.

“I raised my head to see what was making that sound. It was tiny wavelets breaking along the edge of a mirror-still lake, rattling the small pebbles that lined the shore. I was laying in the sand on the shore of Lake Michigan, just a few inches from the water. I felt good, like I just had the best rest that I had ever had.” (John Star)

Categories
Research Conclusions Science

The Temple of Knowledge and the Near-Death Experience

One remarkable aspect of many near-death accounts is a visit to a heavenly structure that resembles a temple or a library. This structure has different names, such as: the Temple of Knowledge, the Temple of Wisdom, the heavenly Hall of Records, or simply a library. The following are examples of near-death accounts that involve this heavenly structure.

Table of Contents

  1. Near-death temple experiences
  2. Ruth Montgomery’s metaphysical insights about the heavenly temple
  3. Other metaphysical insights about the heavenly temple
  4. Ancient Egyptian references of a heavenly temple
  5. Christian references of a heavenly temple

1. Near-death temple experiences

Dr. George Ritchie’s NDE Temple Experience: “I began to perceive a whole new realm! Enormous buildings stood in a beautiful sunny park that reminded me somewhat of a well-planned university. As we entered one of the buildings and doorways, the air was so hushed that I was actually startled to see people in the passageway. I could not tell if they were men or women, old or young, for all were covered from head to foot in loose-flowing hooded cloaks which made me think vaguely of monks. But the atmosphere of the place was not at all as I imagined a monastery. It was more like some tremendous study center, humming with the excitement of great discovery. Everyone we passed in the wide halls and on the curving staircases seemed caught up in some all-engrossing activity; not many words were exchanged among them. And yet I sensed no unfriendliness between these beings, rather an aloofness of total concentration. Whatever else these people might be, they appeared utterly and supremely self-forgetful – absorbed in some vast purpose beyond themselves. Through open doors I glimpsed at enormous rooms filled with complex equipment. In several of the rooms hooded figures bent over intricate charts and diagrams, or sat at the controls of elaborate consoles flickering with lights. Somehow I felt that some vast experiment was being pursued, perhaps dozens and dozens of such experiments. And something more … In spite of his obvious delight in the beings around us, I sensed that even this was not the ultimate, that he had far greater things to show me if only I could see.

“And so I followed him into other buildings of this domain of thought. We entered a studio where music of a complexity I couldn’t begin to follow was being composed and performed. There were complicated rhythms, tones not on a scale I knew. ‘Why,’ I found myself thinking. ‘Bach is only the beginning!’

“Next we walked through a library the size of the whole University of Richmond. I gazed into rooms lined floor to ceiling with documents on parchment, clay, leather, metal, paper. ‘Here,’ the thought occurred to me, ‘are assembled the important books of the universe.’ Immediately I knew this was impossible. How could books be written somewhere beyond the Earth! But the thought persisted, although my mind rejected it. ‘The key works of the universe,’ the phrase kept recurring as we roamed the domed reading rooms crowded with silent scholars. Then abruptly, at the door to one of the smaller rooms, almost an annex: ‘Here is the central thought of this Earth.’

“‘Is this heaven, Lord Jesus?’ I ventured. The calm, the brightness, they were surely heaven-like! So was the absence of self, of clamoring ego. ‘When these people were on Earth did they grow beyond selfish desires?’ ‘They grew, and they have kept on growing.'” (Dr. George Ritchie)

Dr. Allen Kellehear’s NDE Temple Experience Research: Dr. Kellehear published an interesting near-death account where a person sees Albert Einstein in heaven operating a computer in a heavenly library. This account has similarities to George Ritchie‘s heavenly temple/library accounts described in this article. Here is an excerpt of the account from Dr. Kellehear’s book Experiences Near Death:

“This time we were audience to a choir of angels singing. Angels were totally outside my reality at the time, yet somehow I knew these beautiful beings to be angelic. They sang the most lovely and extraordinary music I had ever heard. They were identical, each equally beautiful. When their song was over, one of their number came forward to greet me. She was exquisite and I was mightily attracted, but I then realized my admiration could only be expressed in a wholly nonphysical manner, as to a little child. I was embarrassed by my error, but it did not matter. All was forgiven in this wonderful place.

“Instantly we arrived in an art gallery. It contained the work of the great masters of all time and all places. The display was both classical and modern. Some of the great works seemed familiar. Others were unlike anything I had ever seen, indescribable. The beauty and form of the sculpture and paintings on display were beyond words. A lifetime could be spent in this place, but to see everything I needed to see during this visit, we must move on.

“Next we materialized in a computer room. It was a place of great activity, yet peace prevailed. None of the stress of business was present, but prodigious work was accomplished. The people seemed familiar to me, like old friends. This was confusing, because I knew there to be present those who lived on Earth still, and those who had passed on. Some of them I knew by name, others by reputation; and all had time for me, to teach me if ever I need help understanding. One of them was Albert Einstein, whom I had always admired greatly but distantly, and this great man took time away from his duties to encourage me. He asked me if I would care to operate the computer, which was very complex and beautiful and designed to guide the path of destinies. I was flattered, but felt incompetent and unsure of myself in the presence of such greatness. I told him I would like to try, but I was afraid of making a mistake. He laughed greatly, and reassured me, saying that error was not possible in this place. Encouraged, I seemed instinctively to know how to operate this unusual machine, and waved my hand in a pattern over the large keyboard, rather like playing a piano without touching the keys. I knew instantly the task had been performed perfectly, and it had somehow been of great benefit to someone. I was suffused with the joy of a job well done. I would gladly spend eternity here at this rewarding work if only for the tremendous feeling of well-being I had experienced as a result.

“We continued our tour and arrived at a library. It was a vast old traditional building, containing all of the wisdom of the ages, everything ever said or written. Room upon room, shelf upon shelf of books stretched away as far as the eye could see. By that time I had growing doubt I was destined to stay in this mysterious yet familiar place, even though I knew in my heart it was home. I had the uncomfortable feeling I must return soon to resume my life. My guide, for by now I thought of him as such, told me I must study and learn from the infinite array of wisdom before us. I was dismayed, and said there was no way I was capable of such a task. I was told to simply make a beginning, to do the best I could, and that would always be good enough. There was plenty of time.” (Dr. Allen Kellehear’s Research)

Hal’s Temple Experience: “I was snapped back to the task at hand – the life review. It was judgment to be sure, but more like fact-finding than fault-finding. The only condemnation was me regretting some of my mistakes. Then the movie stopped abruptly. The end of my life had been reached. The Being of Light was surprised and I felt it. There was something missing. [The Being of Light then takes Hal to a heavenly library to find out why his life review suddenly stopped.] With no movement at all, we were now at a large library. The one who had been doing my life review was no longer a ball of light but now a hooded and robed figure. And still inscrutable. ‘Look what I found out there,’ it said to the library staff. One of the clerks went to large bead rack, much like an abacus, and began calculating. One clerk wore a short robe with a classic Greek pattern decorating the lower edge. His robe had a hood, as did the robes of all the others. I concluded that his hood was not for warmth and asked my guide. The guide confirmed my observation, the hoods were not for warmth. When I pushed to know the purpose of the hoods I was informed that I would know when it was time to have that information. I sensed that my guide disapproved of the non-traditional attire, but had no cause to criticize as the work done by that individual was always excellent. Another clerk observed the placement of the beads on the top row and thought, ‘Oh, no! The Old section.'” That was clay tablets to be moved and sorted through. A moment later, two of the beads in the top row were moved again. It would be in the section written on hides stretched over wooden frames. Much easier to sort through. When the calculation finished, we set off through the stacks counting rows as we went. I observed stacked sheets of papyrus, then scrolls. Then came rows with stacked wooden frames. We passed these quickly and came to a row with hides stretched over sticks. A clerk was now counting bays, then shelves, then hides. One hide was selected and pulled from the stack. Another clerk carefully counted the entries until he found the right one. The writing was like none I’d seen before. It reminded me a bit of Hebrew and runic writing. I couldn’t read it. But I could read the mind of my guide! Hah! Blocked. I tried to read it through one of the clerks. Frustrated again. I tried to memorize the shapes of the letters but was frustrated there as well. My guide informed me that I wasn’t supposed to know what the entry said. I asked what was I allowed to know? I was informed that the entry described my life. It was hardly larger than a business card.” From this information, the Being of Light made the decision to return Hal to his body. (Hal)

Betty Eadie’s Temple Experience: “I was taken to a large room similar to a library. As I looked around it seemed to be a repository of knowledge, but I couldn’t see any books. Then I noticed ideas coming into my mind, knowledge filling me on subjects that I had not thought about for some time – or in some cases not at all. Then I realized that this was a library of the mind. By simply reflecting on a topic, as I had earlier in Christ’s presence, all knowledge on that topic came to me. I could learn about anybody in history – or even in the spirit world – in full detail. (Betty Eadie)

Edgar Cayce’s Temple Experience: “As I pass on [through the tunnel], there is more light and movement in what appear to be normal cities and towns. With the growth of movement I become conscious of sounds, at first indistinct rumblings, then music, laughter, and singing of birds. There is more and more light, the colors become very beautiful, and there is the sound of wonderful music. The houses are left behind; ahead there is only a blending of sound and color. Quite suddenly I come upon a Hall of Records. It is a hall without walls, without ceiling, but I am conscious of seeing an old man who hands me a large book (which he calls the ‘Book of Life‘), a record of the individual for whom I seek information.” (Edgar Cayce)

Carl Jung’s Temple Experience: “Something new entered my field of vision. A short distance away I saw in space a tremendous dark block of stone, like a meteorite. It was about the size of my house, or even bigger. It was floating in space, and I myself was floating in space. An entrance led into a small antechamber. To the right of the entrance, a black Hindu sat silently in lotus posture upon a stone bench. He wore a white gown, and I knew that he expected me. Two steps led up to this antechamber, and inside, on the left, was the gate to the temple … As I approached the steps leading up to the entrance into the rock, a strange thing happened: I had the feeling that everything was being sloughed away; everything I aimed at or wished for or thought, the whole phantasmagoria of earthly existence, fell away or was stripped from me – an extremely painful process… Something else engaged my attention: as I approached the temple I had the certainty that I was about to enter an illuminated room and would meet there all those people to whom I belong in reality. There I would at last understand – this too was a certainty – what historical nexus I or my life fitted into. I would know what had been before me, why I had come into being, and where my life was flowing. My life as I lived it had often seemed to me like a story that has no beginning and end. I had the feeling that I was a historical fragment, an excerpt for which the preceding and succeeding text was missing. My life seemed to have been snipped out of a long chain of events, and many questions had remained unanswered. Why had it taken this course? Why had I brought these particular assumptions with me? What had I made of them? What will follow? I felt sure that I would receive an answer to all the questions as soon as I entered the rock temple. There I would meet the people who knew the answer to my question about what had been before and what would come after.” [Jung learns he must return to his body.] “I was profoundly disappointed, for now it all seemed to have been for nothing. The painful process of defoliation had been in vain, and I was not to be allowed to enter the temple, to join the people in whose company I belonged.” (Carl Jung)

Jan Price’s Temple Experience: “Quickly we approached a structure of supernal beauty. It was vast, of the purest white, and somewhat Grecian in architecture. Paths led into the structure from all directions, and I observed many people coming and going. Over the archway through which we entered the structure, I saw the words TEMPLE OF KNOWLEDGE and felt a gentle power drawing me into itself. There were pillars of varying heights, becoming higher and higher toward the center. Turning back to the interior of the temple, I saw that creative activities were taking place in different areas. There were a number of individuals sitting at easels painting, and I saw one man playing a flute-like instrument that emitted the sweetest of sounds. Farther on, dancers moved with ethereal grace, performing with a lightness impossible to the physical human form. As I watched in utter delight, I became aware that the musical background for this visual feast came from what I would call a celestial choir – an orchestra of voices creating heavenly music for the dance. This Music of the Spheres was indeed singing the praises of the Creator. A little tug from Maggi reminded me that there was more here in the temple to investigate. Moving in toward the center, it was quieter, and the gentle power that I had felt earlier was stronger. Here were individuals, wise ones, it seems, stationed at intervals and waiting to assist those who chose to approach them. (Jan Price)

Dannion Brinkley’s Temple Experience: “Like wingless birds, we swept into a city of cathedrals. These cathedrals were made entirely of a crystalline substance that glowed with a light that shone powerfully from within. I was awestruck. This place had a power that seemed to pulsate through the air. I knew that I was in a place of learning. I wasn’t there to witness my life or to see what value it had had, I was there to be instructed. When we entered the structure, the Being of Light was with me no more. I looked around for him and saw no one. Rows of benches were lined up across the room, and that radiant light made everything glow and feel like love. I sat on one of the benches and looked around the room for my spiritual guide.” [Dannion then encounters thirteen Beings of Light.] “Now more than ever I knew that this was a place of learning. I would be steeped in knowledge, taught in a way that I had never been taught before. There would be no books and no memorization. In the presence of these Beings of Light, I would become knowledge and know everything that was important to know. I could ask any question and know the answer. It was like being a drop of water bathed in the knowledge of the ocean, or a beam of light knowing what all light knows.” [Dannion is then given prophetic visions of the future before he returns to his body.] (Dannion Brinkley)

Karen Brannon’s Temple Experience: “I was in a library in an ethereal temple or atrium, similar to ancient Greek or Roman villas. Everything was airy and light. I had the impression that there were other souls studying in the next room. I gathered all this information instantaneous. While I was getting the information of the library and school at the temple, I was aware of a very tall Master or Spiritual Guide with long white robe, and long white hair and beard.” (Karen Brannon)

J.A.’s Temple Experience: “Suddenly we got into a place that looked like a room or a church or a temple, the only thing was that it was shining brighter than the sun. I can’t remember what happened after we entered the light, but when I came back I became a different person.” (J.A.)

Alan McDougall’s Temple Experience: “At first I was taken up through the tunnel into a place of learning [library] into the glorious light at the one end of this almost infinite tunnel. While in the light I experienced great feelings of elation, love and peace. Here I was shown great events that were to come to planet Earth, sometime in the future. There was a being with me all the time that I could not see, but hear. It spoke with a male voice. I believed it/he was what we mortals refer to as God.” (Alan McDougall)

Damien Spaulding’s Temple Experience: “I navigated around for a second or two at the speed of thought and realized in the distance there was an open library. A library in the sky without walls … In a blink of an eye, I was within the confines of this learning area and I came to the understanding that this area contained all of the answers of the universe. I was so elated! I opened myself to the knowledge gate and answers began to play through my mind like the pictures in the movie The Lawnmower Man. I saw pictures and diagrams of our entire universe being created and all the fabrics within it. I began to see wisdom and knowledge of man and spirit. I even saw Einstein’s Theory of Relativity and understood holes in the theory because true spirituality had the real answers (They were big). I began to truly understand everything and it was bliss. I wanted to take all of the knowledge I could back with me, but I knew that this knowledge was knowledge of the spirit and could not be taken back into my little material brain. I would have to stay dead and be with God in order to keep it forever and I wanted that. I was enjoying myself so greatly. I wanted to stay for a long time.” (Damien Spaulding)

2. Ruth Montgomery’s metaphysical insights about the heavenly temple

Ruth Montgomery (1913-2001), a past president of the prestigious National Press Club, began her career as a Washington DC reporter. She wrote a book about the world-renowned psychic, Jeanne Dixon, called A Gift of Prophecy. Jeanne Dixon was the psychic who warned President Kennedy not to go to Dallas on that fateful day. Her book on Jeanne Dixon was very successful and Ruth began looking further into the paranormal phenomenon. She soon discovered that she had the gift of “automatic writing” (trance typewriting) by which she could communicate with various deceased personalities. Despite all the ridicule and criticism, she was able to channel a great deal of information from the other side, specifically from her deceased friend, the famous spiritualist and medium, Arthur Ford. Ford was the psychic who successfully revealed Houdini’s secret code from the Other Side; and although there was a controversy about this, but it was never proven that Ford received Houdini’s code any other way but from the Other Side. From beyond the grave, Montgomery received startling answers to questions about life after death, such as: What happens after death? Where do we go? What is it like over there? Ruth Montgomery documented these revelations in a series of books including: The World to ComeThe World BeforeHere and Hereafter. The following is an excerpt from her book, A World Beyond where Ruth Montgomery received information concerning the heavenly temple and how it relates to various types of people after death.

a. A Murderer’s Death Experience:

“What of a murderer who deliberately kills another for his personal gain or satisfaction? This is not a pretty story. Full of hatred or vengeance, he expects to find nothing when he passes through the door called death, and for a long time that is usually what he finds – nothing. He is in a state like unto death for a goodly while, until at last something arouses him, and he wakens to find out that the hell he had every reason to expect is indeed awaiting him. It is not goblins and devils that he sees, but visions of his own face distorted by hatred, greed, malice, and other defeating emotions. He cringes from the sight, realizing that he sees himself thus, that he himself was possessed of a devil, and that except for his baser nature he would have been able unaided to cast him forth. He is appalled as he realizes that he wasted a lifetime of opportunity. Not for him is enrollment in the Temple of Wisdom or the higher school of learning.” (Ruth Montgomery)

b. A Baby’s Death Experience:

“The so-called baby returns in the spirit world and after a brief period of adjustment, is ready to begin again in the Temple of Wisdom to learn how to resume the ascent toward the ideal of oneness with God. Because he has been gone from the spirit world only briefly, he needs little re-instruction, but if he had been a physical baby for two or three years, there would be souls in the spirit world ready to help him adjust psychologically to bring him out of the baby syndrome and into adulthood again.” (Ruth Montgomery)

c. A Fundamentalist Preacher’s Death Experience:

“Let’s take the case of a man of the cloth, a Billy Sunday-type who preaches hellfire and brimstone and believes every bit of the Good Book literally. He dies, and after the first shock of discovering that God is not sitting on a throne surrounded by angels, he begins exhorting people here to repent before it is too late. He thinks that this is a very brief interlude until he adjusts, and that the rest of us are probably lost souls who lack the righteousness to advance into God’s waiting arms. His sermons here actually do draw souls who hunger for the kind of heaven that their finite minds had conceived, and they think that this Billy Sunday-type will lead them rapidly to the promised land. They throng to his sermons and shout “Amen,” while he tells them that within a very short time they will all advance into heaven with a retinue of angels playing harps. “Amen,” they shout again, and are grateful that one of their own, at last, has arrived to open the gates of the temple.

“This preacher, who we’ll call Billy, at first rants and exhorts, demanding to know of the older souls around here how he can find the way to the throne of God, because he honestly believes that it is being concealed from him in some mysterious way. At last the old souls gather around and explain to Billy that he is preaching a false doctrine; that heaven is within each man, and so is his private hell; that he has arrived, and nothing is being hidden from him. It is up to him to begin work on his own spiritual advancement, and he is retarding the progress of others by misleading them with false hopes of a promised land. For this is the promised land, and we make of it what we will through our own endeavors.

“Wiser heads, so to speak, take Billy in hand, because he is a good but misguided soul. They suggest that he attend a Temple of Wisdom for a time to have his eyes opened to the one truth; that all of us are God, and that until all have realized this basic truth, none of us will advance beyond the basic state of man.” (Ruth Montgomery)

3. Other metaphysical insights about the heavenly temple

Frederick W. H. Myers revealed from the other side that as soon as this World-School experience has been thoroughly comprehended either through reincarnation, or through the exchange of experiences with others on the Other Side the soul may proceed to dimensions beyond the reach of the material dimension. One of these dimensions is a realm where things may be created with the mind and shaped by the direct action of the imagination. Though a person may linger in this stage for indeterminable period of time, an eventual decision must be made. The soul either returns to Earth or progresses to higher dimensions. Before leaving, however, the more enterprising souls may have an opportunity to experience one of the great wonders of this dimension of consciousness a tour through some section of The Great Memory. Just as on Earth, one may go to a library and see newsreels of important Earth events of history or witness any event that occurred from the beginning of human experience. Everything that has ever happened has been recorded by the Cosmic Memory. (Frederick W. H. Myers)

According to Sylvia Browne, most people are eventually lead after death by our spirit guide to a building on the other side called the Hall of Wisdom. In a sacred room, we see our lives flash before us on a scanning machine. This device is a domed screen where our lives are placed out in three-dimensional holographic form. Once we have fully evaluated our lives, we are debriefed in an orientation process. This is when we discuss the lifetime previously lived and reviewed in the scanning machine. We meet with guides who are trained orientators who discuss ways of amending for previous mistakes. We receive help if we were unprepared for our crossing over into the spirit realm. Once a person has adjusted to the transition, they can visit a place called the Hall of Records where historical data is stored such as the records of everyone’s past lives. Another beautiful structure is the Hall of Justice where people go before a Council of Elders who are highly advanced spokespersons of God who help us decide how we are to progress further into the spirit realm. (Sylvia Browne)

Jerry Gross is an expert and instructor in out-of-body experiences. He states that in the astral realm, we can discover the history of the world, and the history of our lives. The Hall of Records contains our present lives as well as our past. In it, are recorded our accomplishments and our failures. We can meet our spiritual teachers – which the churches have termed our guardian angels – and we can ask them for advice and guidance on our problems. (Jerry Gross)

4. Ancient Egyptian references of a heavenly temple

According to the ancient Egyptian religion, at each stage of the journey after death into the afterlife the Book of the Dead would have to be consulted in order to recite the names and formulas that would follow further progress. The “Anubis” (the being who guides the soul in his journey) would provide escort to a heavenly Hall of Justice. In the court proceedings, Thoth (the god of wisdom) acts as prosecutor while forty-two divine figures sit as jurors. Using the Book of the Dead, the deceased must account for his life. (James Lewis)

5. Christian references of a heavenly temple

In the Book of Revelation in the Bible, Jesus tells the believers of the Church of Philadelphia that when they overcome the world they will never again have to leave the Temple of God in heaven:

Bible: “He who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will he leave it.” (Revelation 3:12)

According to Edgar Cayce, the interpretation of the symbolism of this Temple of God and the superconscious mind (our spirit). Here are other Biblical references to the temple:

Bible: “For you are the temple of the living God; as God has said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” (2 Corinthians 6:16)

Bible: “Jesus answered them, ‘Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.’ The Jews replied, ‘It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” But the temple he had spoken of was his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said.” (John 2:19-22)

Bible: “In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.” (Ephesians 2:21-22)

Categories
Research Conclusions Science

Telepathy and the Near-Death Experience

Telepathy is defined by Wikipedia, the world’s leading online encyclopedia, as: “from the Greek, ‘tele’ meaning ‘distant’, and ‘pathos’ meaning ‘feeling, perception, passion, affliction, experience,’ is the purported transmission of information from one person to another without using any of our known sensory channels or physical interaction. The term was coined in 1882 by the classical scholar Frederic W. H. Myers, a founder of the Society for Psychical Research, and has remained more popular than the earlier expression thought-transference.” After Wikipedia gives this definition of telepathy, it states further, “Telepathy experiments have historically been criticized for lack of proper controls and repeatability. There is no convincing evidence telepathy exists, and the topic is generally considered by the scientific community to be pseudoscience.” This statement by Wikipedia is merely an opinion from a Wikipedia editor. Wikipedia is widely known to be controlled by editors who are predominantly skeptics who are overly biased against content supporting parapsychological positions contradicting the “scientific skepticism” (or “media skepticism”) confirmation bias. Such materialist media skeptics view humans as machines and consciousness as an illusion. But as you will see, there is plenty of evidence supporting the reality of consciousness and mental telepathy. It is up to you to decide whether or not it is convincing.

Dictionary.com, the world’s leading online dictionary, defines “telepathy” as: “communication between minds by some means other than sensory perception.” After this definition, Dictionary.com gives an example of the word “telepathy” used in a sentence which also reveals their skeptical confirmation bias: “His suggestion: a ‘telepathy shield’ that would consist of a thin metal foil around the brain.'” So it is “common knowledge” among the “expert sources” on the Internet that mental telepathy is pseudoscience and those who believe in it’s reality should be wearing tin-foil hats.

With this skeptical background in mind, this article will present to you the case for mental telepathy — not only in the “waking world” — but in the dream world and the world of the dead. As a side note, extrasensory perception or ESP, also called the “sixth sense” or “second sight” according to Wikipedia, is defined as: claimed reception of information not gained through the recognized physical senses but sensed with the mind. The term was adopted by Duke University psychologist J. B. Rhine to denote psychic abilities such as intuition, telepathy, psychometry, clairaudience, and clairvoyance, and their trans-temporal operation as precognition or retrocognition.

Some evidence of NDE telepathy comes from the groundbreaking NDE book, The Self Does Not Die: Verified Paranormal Phenomena from Near-Death Experiences, by Titus Rivas, Anny Dirven, Rudolf H. Smit, Robert Mays, and Janice Holden. The authors describe how NDE-related telepathy takes one of two forms: (1) when the near-death experiencer (NDEr) perceives the mind or consciousness of someone else (living or deceased), and (2) a living person perceiving an NDEr’s NDE – a phenomenon known as shared-death experience (SDE). In both forms of NDE-related telepathy, verified “veridical” perception is involved which provides strong evidence for the survival of consciousness after death. Of the 100+ accounts of NDE veridical out-of-body perception described in the book, the authors described the several accounts involving NDE telepathy:

“To our surprise, in addition to Case 2.1 in Chapter 2 in which an NDEr had paranormal knowledge of the contents of a letter, we were able to find only three more confirmed cases in which an NDEr reported correct telepathic perceptions of another person’s mind. We did find in the literature, however, a considerable number of unconfirmed cases of this type. In other words, NDErs regularly report that, during their NDEs, they experienced telepathic contact with living people such as family members and friends.” (The Self Does Not Die)

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction to NDE Telepathy
  2. NDE Researchers on NDE Telepathy
  3. The Scientific Basis for Telepathy
    a. The U.S. Government Declares ESP Experiments as “Statistically Significant”
    b. Scientific Experiments in Consciousness and Telepathy
    c. A Physical Framework for NDE Telepathy
  4. Accounts of NDE Telepathy by Hearing Impaired People
  5. Accounts of Verified NDE Telepathy with Living People
  6. Accounts of NDE Telepathy from Various NDE Personalities
  7. Howard Storm’s Insights Into NDE Telepathy
  8. The Negative Side of NDE Telepathy
  9. Edgar Cayce on Afterlife Telepathy
  10. The Biblical Case for Telepathy
  11. Links to Scholarly Articles on NDE Telepathy

1. Introduction to NDE Telepathy

People who have had near-death experiences (NDEs) have experienced a far more instantaneous, efficient and less prone to misinterpretation type of communication while outside of their physical body than the spoken word could ever hope to achieve. Dr. Raymond Moody cited “non-verbal communication” as part of his NDE model in his groundbreaking Life After Life (1975) study followed by numerous other NDE experts and studies. NDErs have reportedly experienced “hearing” the thoughts of both the living and the deceased while out of their body. Non-verbal communication exists everywhere as the primary means of communication in these non-physical afterlife realms. The word “telepathy” is not even an adequate definition of the phenomenon. In fact, NDErs find their entire NDE encounter to be too indescribable to be expressed or described in words. The experience of NDE telepathy probably has a lot to do with this. And because telepathy is “nonverbal communication,” this makes it very difficult trying to communicate to people exactly how NDErs communicate nonverbally without words.

In many instances, the word “telepathy” is not used by NDErs themselves, but they clearly refer to a modality of non-verbal communication which is in line with common uses of the term. And there is evidence of NDErs being unable to adequately describe this “non-verbal communication” could be escaping the statistics. Daniel Bourke wrote an article, “On Non-Verbal Communications During the Near-Death Experience: Documenting the Fact and Establishing its Importance,” which was published on Greg Taylor‘s Blog the DailyGrail.com in an article entitled, “Telepathy Between the Dead,” making this case. The author’s obvious conclusion is this “non-verbal communication” is a universal phenomenon among afterlife related phenomenon.

Even after their NDE occurred, one aftereffect can be continued telepathic abilities which may or may not fade over time. Some NDErs have described NDE telepathy as hearing the thoughts of others as the other person’s voice speaking in the NDEr’s mind. Others NDErs have described it as “idea transfer” rather than “word transfer.” Other NDErs have described NDE telepathy as a “knowing” or an “awareness”. And as you will read later in this article, other NDErs have experienced NDE telepathy as receiving entire “blocks of knowledge” or the equivalent of receiving all the knowledge of the universe in “chucks.” NDE telepathy also involves “images” where communication is exchanged not with words or ideas — but with images appearing in the mind’s eye. For example, when a Howard Storm realized that Jesus could read his mind, Storm became embarrassed when he thought of a naked woman. Immediately the image appeared in Storm’s mind’s eye which Jesus saw and chuckled in a non-judgmental manner. NDE telepathy works even between beings separated by a tremendous distances and can also involve “musical notes.” In another example by Howard Storm, Jesus was observed summoning other beings to join him by producing a musical note which was “heard” telepathically from a distant “galaxy” representing a “City of Light.”

NDE studies describe the realm of the NDE as the realm where thoughts are real — where thoughts are deeds. It is a realm where you are what you think — where you create your own reality with your mind. This is because the NDE realm is the realm of the mind, soul and spirit. Not only is communication mediated by thought, but so is travel. In the NDE realm, a person only needs to have the intention to be somewhere and this is all it takes for them to be instantly there. This has been reported in numerous NDE testimonies. Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) stated how souls in heaven need only the desire to communicate with someone else and that person’s face will immediately appear before them. There is also evidence of souls in the NDE realm able to travel through a variety of afterlife realms by means of telepathic travel. This is because souls are not confined to any particular realm at any given time and can operate in more than one realm at the same time through telepathy.

NDErs who have reported being out of their body during their NDE, and have wandered around living people unseen by them, have reported hearing — not only the speech of such living people — but their thoughts as well through telepathic means. Many of these events have been verified as actually have happened — a phenomenon known as “veridical perception.” Moody (1975) described the case of a man who became blind in childhood, but who suddenly could see his surroundings accurately during his NDE. However, the patient became blind again when he returned to consciousness. The blind man accurately described his surroundings, the appearance of individuals, and the events transpired, apparently perceived in a telepathic fashion. Those apparent telepathic skills were lost when consciousness returned, and the man was again blind after his NDE was over. Even deaf NDErs have reported being aware of the thoughts and speech of living and deceased people during their NDE. Some of these deaf NDErs have experienced veridical telepathic perceptions as well. As you will see, some NDErs have even reported communicating telepathically with their deceased pets — the NDE account of Jan Price is of particular importance.

NDErs such as Sandra Rogers have described in “Lessons from the Light” her experience of telepathic communication during her NDE: “Communication in the spiritual world is telepathic. Your thoughts are answered as rapidly as your mind can send and receive them. When you die, everything you have said, thought, or done will be known by all. There are no secrets in the afterlife. Spirits with evil thoughts avoid the light because they are too ashamed to have their thoughts revealed. Spirits with like thoughts are drawn to each other in the afterlife”.

Jayne Smith described receiving “blocks of knowledge” while expanding in God’s light: “My consciousness began to expand with the bliss of it all. Suddenly there came into my field of consciousness an entire field of knowledge. It was like a whole block of knowledge that just simply came in and settled itself on me. I knew, what takes several sentences to tell, but it didn’t come in several sentences – it came all in one piece. What I knew was that I was immortal, that I was eternal, that I was indestructible, that I always had been, that I always will be, and that there was no way in this world I could ever be lost … When that block of knowledge was digested by me, as it were, another block of knowledge came in.” (Jayne Smith)

Later on in her NDE, Jayne Smith attempts to explain NDE telepathy: “I must tell you that when we talked, we did not move our mouths. I can remember that I only had to have the impulse that contained the things that I wanted to say and he would immediately be able to get that and answer me. Even though he was not moving his mouth when he talked with me, I could hear the sound of his voice in my inner ear. I know what he sounded like. It was a mental transmission, yet I could hear what he sounded like. For a long, long time, I could remember the sound of his voice.” (Jayne Smith)

NDE studies show humans are multidimensional beings having a telepathic connection between a variety of physical and non-physical dimensions of consciousness: (1) we have a physical body (and conscious mind) operating in the physical realm; (2) we have a “soul body” (subconscious mind) operating in the soul realms; and (3) we a “spirit body” (superconscious mind) operating in the spirit realms. So the physical realm turns out to be just another of the so-called “afterlife” realms in God’s hierarchy of realms. This means we are currently living in the “afterlife” right now. And this is probably why Jesus said, “The Kingdom of God is within you,” and “you are gods” — the “mystery of God in man” of God’s Spirit in human beings. NDE revelations of the future show the evolution of humanity moving toward a more telepathic society on earth; as well as, communication with higher beings of other realms in the physical and non-physical. I am convinced NDE studies will have a large role to play in this.

2. NDE Researchers on NDE Telepathy

Prominent researchers in the field of near-death studies have made it a point to note the peculiar persistence of telepathy as the primary “currency of communication”.

Raymond Moody‘s “core” near-death experience considers the telepathic aspect of the experience as being recurring enough to warrant a place in his model NDE; he writes: “…Soon other things begin to happen. Others come to meet and help him. He glimpses the spirits of relatives and friends who have already died, and a loving, warm spirit of a kind he never encountered before-a being of light-appears before him. This being asks him a question, nonverbally…” (Moody, Life After Life, p. 19.) Moody wrote how “hearing” in the spiritual state can apparently be called so only by analogy, and most say they do not really hear physical voices or sounds. Rather, they seem to pick up the thoughts of persons around them (Moody, Life After Life, p. 46.) One of Moody’s experiencers described NDE telepathy , “While I was dead, in this Void, I talked to people-and yet, I really couldn’t say that I talked to any bodily people. Yet, I had the feeling that there were people around me, and I could feel their presence, and could feel them moving, though I could never see anyone. Every now and then, I would talk with one of them. but I couldn’t see them. And whenever I wondered what was going on, I would always get a thought back from one of them” (Moody, Life After Life, p. 52.)

Dr. Kenneth Ring wrote: “A luminous figure a true psychopomp will appear to guide the individual in his journey. This figure represents what I call the archetype of the cosmic shaman. For in this role he is not merely a guide in the passive sense of escort but is, rather, a man (or woman) of knowledge. He is a being who appears to know all about the life of the individual undergoing this experience and all about the realm into which the individual has entered. And while in this realm, the NDEr will receive instantaneously and telepathically the answers to all of his questions from this being, this cosmic shaman. Knowledge will simply flood into his soul as the mysteries of life and death are finally and fully illuminated.” (Dr. Kenneth Ring)

Cardiologist Pim van Lommel writes in his seminal book Consciousness Beyond Life: “Many people report direct communication with this being (of light), as if it reads their mind and responds to the mind” (Dr. Pim Van Lommel)

Dr. Peter Fenwick believes telepathy is a major part of the NDE when he compares the experience to the deathbed vision (DBV) experience, a related phenomenon, by stating in his paper, Dying: A spiritual experience as shown by NDEs and deathbed visions: “The similarity of deathbed visions to NDEs is striking. The peace, love and light are common to both, as is the experience of a journey and an entry into a world dominated by beauty and color. The experiencing of religious figures and dead relatives together with the method of communication, a sort of mental telepathy, are also similar”. (Dr. Peter Fenwick)

In her book, Otherworld Journeys, Dr. Carol Zaleski states: “The line between outer and inner voices is especially difficult to trace in accounts which indicate that communication in the other world is telepathic” (Dr. Carol Zaleski)

NDE researcher Vince Migliore analyzed over 700 NDEs and published his statistical analysis of them in his book, A Measure of Heaven: Near-Death Experience Data Analysis, which includes his findings on NDE telepathy. According to Migliore, telepathy appears to be the preferred mode of communication in the spiritual realms. People hear voices during their NDEs, but this communication is a direct, mind-to-mind communication, and not a mechanical vibration of sound. Those who report telepathic messages often note how precise the method is compared to the use of words. There is no confusion or doubt about the concept being conveyed. Knowledge is sometimes combined with telepathy, and this appears to aid communication. Migliore cites this example from the NDERF.org: “I would ‘ask’ then would ‘know’ the answer from the golden, glowing, loving being. I had no lips to speak and no ears to hear but I heard and spoke somehow. So did it. I reveled in that complete, pure, communication. There was no possibility of misunderstandings or evasions. There were no words to confuse the issue, only the truth of learning and knowing each other between us.” (NDERF.org case 1615)

Migliore states how the thought process during NDEs is enough to ensure communication by telepathic means. Migliore cites an example from the IANDS NDE Archives: “The peace was so overwhelming and so comforting. Then a voice spoke over my left shoulder, a voice so beautiful, full of love and so deep that I will never forget that sound. He said, ‘Your time is not now. You must go back to your children. They need you.’ I said, ‘I do not want to go back’ several times over, and the voice said, ‘Your newborn baby needs a mother and your other two children need you.’ No words were spoken as it all happened telepathically. All I had to do was think about what I wanted to say.” (IANDS, There is More)

P.M.H. Atwater‘s book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Near-Death Experiences, Atwater provides a remarkable NDE which caused the NDEr, who was otherwise not considered to be telepathic or psychic, to be so because of veridical perception: “In another case, a young woman died on the operating table from injuries received in a car / truck accident, but was resuscitated. Immediately and with great animation she described meeting her father while she was dead. She said her father had told her why he had been born, and why and how he had died. He then told her why she had been born, and that she must return to the land of the living for she had not yet completed all that she must do. She was so excited about her father’s “visit” that the surgical personnel had a tough time finishing the medical procedures she needed. A gathering of relatives in the waiting room pooh-poohed her entire story when a physician told them about it, asserting that the father was quite healthy. One of them offered that he had spoken that very morning with the father on the phone. After several more unsuccessful attempts to convince the woman she was hallucinating, the doctor returned to the waiting room and insisted that the father be called. Many phone calls later, it was discovered that the father had died exactly as he had told his daughter he did five minutes before she died. No one could have known this in advance, much less the daughter.” (P.M.H. Atwater, pp.160-161)

3. The Scientific Basis for Telepathy

a. The U.S. Government Declares ESP Experiments as “Statistically Significant”

Michael Schmicker’s book, Best Evidence: An Investigative Reporter’s Three-Year Quest to Uncover the Best Scientific Evidence for ESP…Near Death Experiences, etc.,” has served as a textbook for courses at three different U.S. universities. The book gives an excellent summary of the U.S. government’s experiments in ESP, remote viewing, and telepathy:

On November 28, 1995, the Central Intelligence Agency released an official report on the Department of Defense’s remote viewing program and its achievements [CIA Link] The report commissioned by the CIA was entitled “The American Institutes for Research Review of the Department of Defense’s Star Gate Program” by Edwin C. May and evaluated both (1) the laboratory research experiments in remote viewing as well as (2) intelligence operations employing the remote viewing techniques. Two university professors were recruited to help American Institutes for Research in-house staff to evaluate the project: Dr. Jessica Utts of the University of California, Davis; and Dr. Ray Hyman of the University of Oregon (the well-known skeptic of paranormal phenomena who challenged Honorton and is closely and publicly affiliated with the skeptic group CSICOP described in Chapter 4). The American Institutes for Research final report concluded that the laboratory ESP experiments were statistically significant (PDF). For her part, program reviewer Dr. Jessica Utts agreed in her 1995 paper, “An Assessment of the Evidence for Psychic Functioning” (PDF). Utts says the experiments’ success was not due to chance, methodological flaws in the experiments, or fraud. From here on, she recommended, researchers should focus on how the phenomenon worked, not on proving whether it existed “since there is little more to be offered to anyone who does not accept the current collection of data.” Her counterpart, Dr. Ray Hyman responded with his own paper, “Evaluation of Program on Anomalous Mental Phenomena.” Hyman focused his attention on the later SAIC experiments. He agreed that the SAIC experiments were well-designed and the results not dismissible as statistical flukes, but didn’t agree that the experiments conclusively proved the reality of psychic functioning. He would admit, however “the case for psychic functioning seems better than it ever has been,” and “I do not have a ready explanation for these observed effects.” Harold Puthoff and Russell Targ‘s experiments in clairvoyance/remote viewing at the Stanford Research Institute have essentially been replicated by the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) program, further establishing the reality of this form of ESP. See the Journal of Scientific Exploration (Vol. 10, No. 1, 1996) for a fairly complete discussion of the 24-year long government sponsored remote viewing experiments at SAIC and SRI, and the subsequent official evaluation reports. It also includes the in-depth comments of former program directors Hal Puthoff and Edwin C. May, and their colleague, SRI researcher Russell Targ.

b. Scientific Experiments in Consciousness and Telepathy

The first best scientific experiments into telepathy were the ganzfeld experiments developed by Charles Honorton, William Braud, and Adrian Parker in the early 1970’s. A “ganzfeld” experiment (from the German for “entire field”) is a technique used in parapsychology which are used to test individuals for extrasensory perception (ESP) and are among the most recent in parapsychology for testing telepathy. Ganzfeld protocols are a simple and reliable means of replicating spontaneous psychic experiences in the laboratory where such protocols can be applied to eliminate normal explanations. The level of success is often sufficient to indicate that telepathy is not just a statistical anomaly but has content that is psychologically and statistically meaningful. Any chance of vulnerability to fraud and flaws were greatly reduced by the development of a computerized version of ganzfeld in 1979 by Honorton and his colleagues known as “autoganzfeld“. This technique uses a computer to control the sequences and outcomes, strictly following the requirements stipulated by critics. With the help of Dr. Daryl Bem, a widely respected social psychologist, the findings were published in a leading scientific journal, the Psychological Bulletin. It was at this time that dynamic targets in the form of short film-clips began to replace the use of static art pictures. This gave a combined result of 106 hits in 329 sessions, a hit rate of 34%, well above the chance rate of 25% — a highly significant result.

In Alexander De Foe’s book, Consciousness Beyond the Body: Evidence and Reflections, he mentioned how Dr. Dean Radin, the Senior Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, shows in some replicated studies, such as in telepathy and precognition research, the level of evidence in favor of parapsychological abilities exceeds discoveries in mainstream physics (Bem, Tressoldi, Rabeyron, & Duggan, 2014). Put simply, this means that by accepted standards within science, parapsychology or some form of non-local perception is a genuine effect. In a Journal of Near-Death Studies paper by Thomas Beck and Janet Colli entitled, “A Quantum Biomechanical Basis for Near-Death Life Reviews” (PDF), the authors provide evidence suggesting humans perceive by means of both local and non-local processes. For example, when viewing a nearby person, the eyes respond to electromagnetic waves, but the mind also seemingly responds to a non-local, instantaneous component (Mitchell, 1999). Accounts of near-death life reviews also suggest non-local perception, as they are said to be virtually instantaneous. The authors make the case for all of the such experiences providing crucial support for the theory of humans possessing the quantum biomechanical mechanisms necessary for non-local telepathic communication. They argue how Radin (1997) summarized non-local experiments across a range of phenomena including telepathy and how his statistical analyses demonstrated the viability of non-local perception. Radin is known for innovative experiments in the study of consciousness and psychic phenomena. His meta analysis of these experiments produced accumulated probabilities against chance occurrences exceeding trillions to one (Radin, 1997). He is the author of accessible books about parapsychology such as: The Conscious Universe (1997), Entangled Minds (2006) and Supernormal (2013). Radin has created a selected list of peer-reviewed journal articles concerning evidence of psychic phenomena, most published in the 21st century, which includes evidence for (a) Healing at a Distance; (b) Physiological correlations at a distance; (c) Telepathy & ESP; (d) Survival of Consciousness; (e) Precognition & Presentiment; (f ) Theory; (g) Mind-Matter Interaction, and resources.

c. A Physical Framework for NDE Telepathy

Carl Jung (1875-1961), the Swiss psychologist and NDEr who founded analytical psychology, is best known for his psychological concepts including archetypes, the collective unconscious, dream analysis, and synchronicity. His interest in philosophy and metaphysics led many to view him as a mystic. Following discussions with both Albert Einstein and Wolfgang Pauli (two founding fathers of quantum physics) Jung believed there were parallels between synchronicity and the relativity of time and its connection to consciousness. Jung was transfixed by the idea of life not being a series of random events but rather an expression of a deeper order, which he and Wolfgang Pauli referred to as “unus mundus” (Latin for “one world”) — a term referring to the concept of an underlying unified reality of the universe from which everything emerges and returns to. Jung believed this principle of an underlying “world” can express itself through synchronicity and was the basis for quantum theories such as the Many-Worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics and its corresponding Many-Minds interpretition.

The dream argument is also the basis for the cosmological “simulation hypothesis” which proposes all of reality, including the earth and the universe, is in fact an an artificial simulation, most likely a computer simulation. Of course, this hypothesis might be just another way of stating our universe is just one dimension in a multidimensional reality as quantum physics theorizes. So those materialist skeptics who argue for physical reality being the only reality must concede the mind — at least the sleeping mind — is capable of accessing images, knowledge, conversations, and worlds with little or no conscious control.

Superstring Theory proposes the existence of an additional 6 dimensions beyond our 4-dimensional reality of space-time (3 spacial dimensions of width, height, and depth, plus 1 dimension of time) plus the possibility of an 11th “Matrix dimension” in “M-Theory“. Interesting enough, neuroscientists recently discovered the brain is full of multi-dimensional geometrical structures operating in as many as 11 dimensions. Even more interesting is the fact that not only does superstring theory offer a framework for one’s consciousness to exist after death in another dimension, superstring theory is the mathematical principle behind the “holographic principle.” This principle was developed by the physicist David Bohm who theorized our universe exists as a “holographic universe” where everything is connected to everything else including our minds. Later Bohm (1980) also viewed the Quantum Hologram (QH) Theory, defined by former astronaut Edgar Mitchell (1930-2016), founder of Institute of Noetic Sciences, as providing another theoretical framework for the continuity of consciousness after death.

Neurophysiologist Karl Pribram synchronistically arrived at a holographic model of the mind and brain at the same time as David Bohm developed his holographic model of the universe. Their combined efforts yielded the holonomic brain theory which proposes a model of human cognition describing the brain as a holographic storage network. Surprisingly, these holographic models may be the basis for all mystical experiences including the NDE. These holographic models are part of a new emerging paradigm called “holism” which is the opposite of reductionism. Bohm describes a Holomovement expressed most clearly in his Wholeness and the Implicate Order on the implicate and explicate order. It is the paradigm where all natural systems – physical, biological, chemical, social, economic, etc. – and their properties, should be viewed as a whole and not the sum of its parts. A corresponding theory of quantum consciousness was developed by the joint work of theoretical physicist, Sir Roger Penrose, and anesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff. Like David Bohm and Karl Pribram before them, Penrose and Hameroff developed their theories synchronistically. Penrose approached the problem of consciousness from the view point of mathematics, while Hameroff approached it from his career in anesthesia which gave him an interest in brain structures. Quantum consciousness is the theory of an underlying consciousness connecting everyone and everything and is based upon quantum fields being interpreted as extending infinitely in space.

On January 21, 2017, a British, Canadian and Italian study provided what researchers believe is the first observational evidence of our universe existing as a vast and complex hologram.

4. Accounts of NDE Telepathy by Hearing Impaired People

In Greg Stone’s critique of Susan Blackmore’s “Dying Brain” theory, he states:

“There are several dozen recorded NDEs of individuals blind (even from birth) who had a visual NDEs (see Dr. Ken Ring‘s book “Mindsight“). Auditory NDEs among the totally deaf have been recorded. I have a NDE from an individual with no sense of smell who was able to smell flowers during their NDE. Again, skeptics cannot present a plausible alternative explanation for these types of experiences.” (Greg Stone)

Dr. Jeff and Jody Long’s NDERF.org extensive database of NDEs contains several remarkable NDEs from people with profound hearing disabilities who were, not only able to hear during their NDEs, they experienced NDE telepathic communication with deceased loved ones. The following are excerpts of these NDEs:

Brian T. was born deaf and drowned at a young age and experienced an NDE:

“I arrived at the boundary while floating my body near the boundary. I was shocked how much load was lifted off my shoulders such as many ridiculous rules or laws being imposed on us people. For the first time I realized how much bondage we had from the government or churches, it was lifted off my shoulders. And at the same time all of the light ‘Conscience of Laws’ was, I could not find the right word to describe the experience. It’s much like a hurricane drawing all energy toward eye of the storm. It’s almost the same feeling of drawing all knowledge and conscience of real-beings into my body and mind!”

“One example when I approached the boundary. No explanation was necessary for me to understand, at the age of ten, that once I crossed the boundary, I could never come back – period. I was more than thrilled to cross. I intended to cross but my ancestors over another boundary side caught my attention. They were talking in telepathy, which caught my attention. I was born profoundly DEAF and had all hearing family members, which all of them knew sign language! I could read or communicate with about twenty ancestors of others and mine through telepathic methods. It overwhelmed me. I could not believe how many people I could telepathize with simultaneously.” (Brian T.)

August is a profoundly deaf person who was surprised to hear sound during her NDE and the telepathic communication:

“Suddenly, I felt myself being pulled very swiftly through total blackness to the entrance of a churning tunnel, its walls reflecting the neon-blue color that my non-corporeal body was emitting. I still had all of my faculties and feelings. The feeling that I had was that the ties that bound me to the earthly world were cut. A low, steady droning sound filled the narrow passageway, this sound coming not from the walls but from me. As a profoundly deaf individual, hearing this sound was beautiful, since it brought comfort as would a mother’s voice for a child. Strangely enough, although I had no limbs and was flying as would a hummingbird, I was not frightened. I was merely a shimmering light…”

“Upon the sighting of the Light, i.e., energy gestalt, which stirred instinctual feelings in me that I would be at a loss to describe with words, shimmering light beings of deceased family members and friends suddenly appeared on the side of the churning passageway to enthusiastically greet me. Their abundant personalities overflowed in their glowing neon-blue and white transparent faces; communication was by telepathy. Disembodied voices greeted me, stirring my emotions as I was hearing as would a normally hearing person, and I began to see clear floating bubbles, in the walls of the dark tunnel that was becoming increasingly bright as I came closer to the shimmering white Light at the end of the passageway. The floating bubbles that moved within the wall of the tunnel were in the fashion of three-dimensional windows, or “virtual-reality” screens, and were “snap shot” moments of my life. Even in death, I did not lose my memories and feelings.” (August)

Amie B. heard beautiful music from “everywhere” though she is deaf in one ear:

“The light was golden and bright and I could hear this music that is totally indescribable. It permeated the air – came from everywhere and nowhere – and is unlike any music I’ve ever heard on earth. I could tell there was someone next to me, and then I was told I had to go back.”

In the NDERF.org questionnaire, Amie B. was asked, “Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience” to which she answered:

“Very clear hearing, the music was from EVERYWHERE, not muffled, and in my normal life I am deaf in one ear.” (Amie B.)

5. Accounts of Verified NDE Telepathy with Living People

In special cases of NDE veridical out-of-body perception, telepathic communication between an NDEr and a living person have been validated to have taken place. Such remarkable cases provide remarkable evidence supporting the survival of consciousness after death.

One of the most remarkable cases of verified NDE telepathy with living people comes from the NDE of the late George Rodonaia. In the book, The Self Does Not Die, by Titus Rivas et al, Rodonaia’s NDE is documented from P.M.H. Atwater‘s research published in her book, Beyond The Light, into Rodonaia’s extraordinary case of veridical out-of-body telepathic perception of an injured infant and of George’s wife during his NDE.

George Rodonaia (died 2004) underwent one of the most extended cases of an NDE ever recorded after being pronounced dead immediately after he was hit by a car in 1976, he was left for three days in the morgue. He did not “return to life” until a doctor began to make an incision in his abdomen as part of an autopsy procedure. The following is an excerpt of this documentation:

“When Rodonaia thought of his body, he saw it lying in the morgue. He remembered everything that had happened. He was also able to ‘see’ the thoughts and emotions of his wife, Nino, and of the people who had been involved in the accident. It was as if they had their thoughts ‘inside of him.’ He then wanted to find out the ‘truth’ of those thoughts and emotions. By expressing a longing for greater knowledge, he was confronted by mental images of existence and thus became acquainted with thousands of years of history.

“When he returned to his body in the morgue, he was drawn to a nearby hospital, where the wife of a friend had just had a baby. The newborn was constantly crying. He examined the baby, a girl. His ‘eyes’ were like X-rays that could look right through the little body. This ability enabled him to draw the conclusion that the baby had broken its hip during delivery. He spoke to her, ‘Don’t cry. Nobody understands you.’ The baby was so astonished by his presence that she immediately stopped crying. According to Rodonaia, children are able to see and hear transmaterial apparitions. The child reacted to him, he believes, because he was ‘a physical reality’ to her.

“After three days, when the autopsy of Rodonaia’s body was just getting under way, he succeeded in opening his eyes. At first, the doctors thought it was a reflex, but Rodonaia appeared to have actually come back from the dead, even though his death and his frigid condition had both been confirmed. He was in poor condition physically, but after three days, the first words he spoke were about the baby that urgently needed help. X-rays of the baby confirmed that he was right.” (The Self Does Not Die, 2016)

At one point, Atwater interviewed Rodonaia’s wife, Nino, who stated that during his NDE, Rodonaia had actually witnessed what she had seen. According to Nino, he had actually had telepathic contact with her. In an email dated July 28, 2015, Atwater wrote Rivas the following about this aspect of the case:

“George told me that as part of his near-death experience, among the many things he could do was to be able to enter the minds of all his friends and find out whether or not they were really friends. During this entry process, he also entered the mind of this wife, Nino. When he did, he both saw and heard his wife picking out his gravesite. As she stood there looking at the gravesite, in her head, she pictured several men she would consider being her next husband. She made a list for herself of their various qualities, pro and con, to decide which one would be the most suitable.

“After George revived and his tongue shrunk back to its normal size so George could talk (this took three days), George greeted his wife. He told her about the gravesite scenario. He described everything she saw there. Then he told her everything she thought about while there, the specific men she was considering to be her next husband and [the] list she was making in her mind about their various pros and cons. He was correct in every detail. This so freaked her out that she refused to have much to do with him for a year. I had no sense that this was telepathic, but real, physically real, as if George’s mind was physically inside his wife’s mind. He saw what she saw. He also saw what she thought.

“When I met Nino and both children, I asked Nino if I could talk to her about that incident at the gravesite and her list of qualities of the men she was considering marrying. She described the incident for me and that all of this was done in the privacy of her own mind. She only thought about the men and their various qualities. The list was her own. When her suddenly, newly alive, formerly dead husband talked about that personal moment at the gravesite, named the men she thought about, and then went on to ‘read’ the list back to her that she made for each man, she was utterly shocked at his accuracy and how he could even do this. This shock was felt as if an affront against her right to privacy, the intimate privacy of her own mind. I asked if it was true that she would have little or nothing to do with him for a year. She said, yes, it was true. She could not sleep in the same room with him. When I asked why, her answer was: ‘I no longer had the privacy of my own mind. This was very hard to take.'” (The Self Does Not Die, 2016)

In his 1988 book, The Light Beyond, Dr. Raymond Moody described the following remarkable case of veridical NDE perception and veridical NDE telepathic perception by a young cardiologist from South Dakota. The following is an excerpt:

“Another amazing case that says NDEs are more than just tricks of the mind was relayed to me by a doctor in South Dakota.

“Driving into the hospital one morning, he had rear-ended a car. It had been very upsetting to him. He was very worried that the people he had hit would claim neck injury and sue him for a large sum of money.

“This accident left him distraught and was very much on his mind later that morning when he rushed to the emergency room to resuscitate a person who was having a cardiac arrest.

“The next day, the man he had rescued told him a remarkable story: ‘While you were working on me, I left my body and watched you work.’

“The doctor began to ask questions about what the man had seen and was amazed at the accuracy of his description. In precise detail, he told the doctor how the instruments looked and even in what order they were used. He described the colors of the equipment, shapes, and even settings of dials on the machines.

“But what finally convinced this young cardiologist that the man’s experience was genuine was when he said, ‘Doctor, I could tell that you were worried about that accident. But there isn’t any reason to be worried about things like that. You give your time to other people. Nobody is going to hurt you.’

“Not only had this patient picked up on the physical details of his surroundings, he had also read the doctor’s mind.” (The Light Beyond, 1988)

6. Accounts of NDE Telepathy from Various NDE Personalities

NDE Telepathy with the Light

Mellen-Thomas Benedict wrote: “I asked the light, ‘What is going on here? Please, light, clarify yourself for me. I really want to know the reality of the situation.’ I cannot really say the exact words, because it was sort of telepathy. The light responded. The information transferred to me was that your beliefs shape the kind of feedback you are getting before the light. If you were a Buddhist or Catholic or Fundamentalist, you get a feedback loop of your own stuff. You have a chance to look at it and examine it, but most people do not.” (Mellen-Thomas Benedict)

Bruce Budden wrote: “The next thing I recall I was in the presence of this massive spirit. I can’t say the actual size because there was no way to gauge our sizes. I was ever so gently floating up and down in a waving motion. It seemed ever so gently, it was almost like a calming motion. I say a massive spirit because as I was facing this spirit, it enveloped my whole vision. It was a bright glowing yellowish light, which closely resembles the radiants of the sun, but it was a soft light. It was not blinding in any way. It wasn’t blinding because I didn’t have my physical eyes (nor body). I was having a conversation with this spirit in a telepathic sense. I can’t recall the conversation because in the spiritual form, the type of downloading of knowledge and insight I received is like a energetic strengthening of my spirit. It’s difficult to explain this but I hope you can understand. My spirit is the one that received the knowledge and insight, not my physical brain. The knowledge is stored in my spirit, not in my physical memory. Do you know what I mean?” (Bruce Budden)

“The Light gave me knowledge, though I heard no words. We did not communicate in English or in any other language. This was discourse clearer and easier than the clumsy medium of language. It was something like understanding math or music – nonverbal knowledge, but knowledge no less profound” (Kimberly Clark-Sharp)

NDE Telepathy with a Being of Light

Dannion Brinkley wrote: “As I gazed at the Being of Light I felt as though he was touching me. From that contact I felt a love and joy that could only be compared to the nonjudgmental compassion that a grandfather has for a grandchild. ‘Who you are is the difference that God makes,’ said the Being. ‘And that difference is love.’ There were no actual words spoken, but this thought was communicated to me through some form of telepathy To this day, I am not sure of the exact meaning of this cryptic phrase. That is what was said, however. Again I was allowed a period of reflection. How much love had I given people? How much love had I taken from them? From the review I had just had, I could see that for every good event in my life, there were twenty bad ones to weigh against it. If guilt were fat, I would have weighed five hundred pounds. As the Being of Light moved away, I felt the burden of this guilt being removed. I had felt the pain and anguish of reflection, but from that I had gained the knowledge that I could use to correct my life. I could hear the Being’s message in my head, again as if through telepathy: “Humans are powerful spiritual beings meant to create good on the Earth. This good isn’t usually accomplished in bold actions, but in singular acts of kindness between people. It’s the little things that count, because they are more spontaneous and show who you truly are.” (Dannion Brinkley)

“I was sometimes met by a being of pure light, not a human form, but pure point of light, who communicated with me mind to mind, via some form of telepathy.” (Alan McDougall)

“The love and respect I had for this being was unlike anyone I had ever known. Then he spoke to me. Not with the mouth, but through telepathy, and I understood everything clearly.” (Elizabeth)

Larry Hagman, the famous actor, had an NDE and emerged into a place of bright and diffused light where he saw a person of indeterminate sex who called out to him without speaking. In typical out-of-body and near-death fashion, the communication seemed to be telepathic, as the being informed him: “This is a glimpse of where you’ve been, where you’re going, where you are all the time.” Put into the terms of yoga psychology,: “You are That” and “That” is our true nature. Despite the deep insights he had already experienced, it was too much for Larry to fully comprehend. The person seemed to recognize this in giving him this message: “You don’t have to go any further – Having seen this is enough for now.” (Larry Hagman)

NDE Telepathy with Jesus

Derry Bresee wrote: “While in my spirit body I remember communicating telepathically, this is how I and Jesus communicated in that heavenly garden. It was so easy, it required no effort, you thought the thoughts and they were communicated. Speaking through my physical mouth is so difficult, and frustrating, and sometimes you’re misunderstood, and they get the wrong meaning of what you’re trying to say. The phrase the world uses of being soul mates is referring to the communication between two souls, spirit to spirit communication. To communicate on a spiritual level is a very profound. I believe I’ve had this spiritual gift ever since my near-death experience, and it has profoundly blesses my life as I use it. I feel this great need to communicate on a spiritual level with others, and one of the only ways I’m able to communicate in this way is through writing. I have to prepare myself mentally to be able communicate on a spiritual level. You have the time to do this as you are writing in your home, without distractions. We are what we think. I find trivial thoughts distracting, I rarely watch TV and then only if it stimulates good thoughts. I listen to different music now, and gravitate towards the ethereal.” (Derry Bresee)

Thomas Sawyer wrote: “There were such feelings of warmth and love coming from the light that it made me feel good. Now it was right before me and instantly began communicating with me. Instantaneously it emanated to me, thought-pattern to thought-pattern. And to describe it I coined the phrase: superluminal telepathic communication: a telepathic thought-pattern to thought-pattern rapport that functioned as fast as or conceivable faster than the speed of light. It was pure communication that was complete in every respect. I will do a bit of role-playing here because the communication was not in words. The light emanated to me, ‘Tom, you have to be where you are and in the condition that you are. Before you is the light. You have the opportunity to ask any series of questions. Any question that you can conceive of will be absolutely, unequivocally answered. If it’s a series of questions about something that you would require some kind of knowledgeable background to intelligently formulate your questions, you will instantly have that background.’ In other words, as I thought of and formulated a desire or a question, it would already have been recognized, acknowledged, and therefore answered. And the dialogue that took place, took place in no time. It didn’t require a fifteen-minute duration in time; it simply happened. One of the questions which I did ask was, ‘What about the Jesus stuff?’ Now that was not a singular question; it’s hard for me to describe so you can understand the way it is. ‘What about the Jesus stuff?’ is like saying, ‘Okay, all kidding aside, was Jesus of Nazareth real, was he a live person? A historical truth? Was he the son of God? Is he divine? Is he at the right hand of the Father? What about the Jesus stuff?’ I can break off here and tell you that was basically answered in the affirmative. At one point I felt as if I were a speck of light on Jesus’ shoulder, and I was able to experience full knowledge of all of his incarnations from the beginning of time.” (Thomas Sawyer)

“In the mid-1970s, Ralph Duncan was dying of leukemia. While he was hospitalized, he had an NDE during which he encountered a luminous being whom he took to be Jesus. Ralph observed that he did not look anything like the traditional images of him. Jesus’ eyes were ‘shooting fire’ and he communicated a telepathic message: ‘That’s enough, it’s dead, it’s gone.’ Ralph understood this to mean that he no longer have leukemia. Through his eyes ‘shooting fire’ and saying ‘That’s enough,’ Ralph understood this to mean in effect, ‘I’ve zapped you with enough voltage for this to cure you.’ Ralph said this is what Jesus meant when he said, ‘It’s dead, it’s gone.'” (Dr. Kenneth Ring)

NDE Telepathy with Spirit Guides

“The guides told me I was in the threshold of death. I wondered if the persons who were dying and leaving their bodies in that moment, knew where they were. The guides that accompanied me were kind, tactful and very compliant, but impenetrable when certain questions were asked, and when they did, they answered with only a smile. The communication was by telepathy and they knew instantly what I was thinking, but their answers were essential, concise and certain.” (Diego Valencia)

Mr. M wrote: “I was aware of the presence of five beings who silently busied themselves within the sacred chamber. Attired in hooded robes that were reminiscent of those worn by trappist monks, my attention was drawn to the one who stood behind the podium. In answer to the mild surprise I felt upon discovering I was not alone, he began utilizing telepathy byway of an introduction. He indicated that within the Spiritual Hierarchy, the Beings who presided over the Library of Light were known as The Council of Five. I was informed that an unprecedented Call had been sent to all sectors of Life. I was told the Leaders of Light were to convene from everywhere and every when within the Chambers of the Library. I was instructed that what once had been was to be no more, because that which is known as “darkness” was to cease and LIGHT would prevail in ALL the worlds of Creation. Looking toward the limited number of pews, I felt there needed to be lot more seating capacity if they intended to pull this caper off. In response, The Council Member began telepathically communicating the name of just one of those who would attend. Immediately a portal opened (sorta, like a holograph that was so intense it felt as if I was in both places at the same time) and I became immersed in the image of immense galaxies that spiraled in space and, comprising millions upon millions of stars and solar systems, teamed with Life and Light. The name of the spiritual leader of this galaxy was inexplicably long and as each word was pronounced I’d see an associated pictographic accomplishment … and the accomplishments embodied a character whose caliber was Creator Level. As His name continued to unfold, I witnessed the depth of His achievements and realized the unimaginable scope of His evolvement. Further, I came to learn their were Others like Him who were sovereign in their own limitless galaxies and they were the ONES who would be gathering in the Library of Light. They are the Heavenly Hosts of the Legions of Light.” (Mr. M)

NDE Telepathy with Angels

“The farther up I went, the brighter the Light became. Two cherubs appeared, one on either side of me, and we slowly drifted to the corner of the ceiling. We communicated through mental telepathy, which is faster and more efficient than mere words. They told me they were Escort Angels and had come to take me Home. (Donna Gatti)

NDE Telepathy with a “Presence”

“I must add here that this ‘communication’ I sense with this ‘presence’ during death is not in the sense of material auditory speech, but rather different, almost as if it is from mind to mind, or telepathic, if you prefer.” (Jack Ward)

“There was other entities out there. I can sense them, but I never saw them. I never saw squat. I didn’t see anything. I just sensed all this. And when I say ‘speak,’ I am sure it was more of a telepathic thing than it was moving the mouth.” (Paul Carr)

NDE Telepathy with Miscellaneous Beings

Telepathy with Earthbound Souls: “There may be earthbound spirits of low vibrations, whom we may regard as devils because they annoy us through mental telepathy. These demons tune in on us through our low vibrations of hate, fear and greed. They can be tuned out with unselfish love, or if necessary be chased away by the stronger spirit of Jesus Christ.” (Arthur Yensen)

Telepathy with a “Pearly Gatekeeper”: “I was being propelled across a vast distance. I dare not look straight ahead, but I remember looking at the wall flashing past me as I sped along some kind of tunnel. Then, at the other end of this journey, I felt a most beautifully reassuring sense of calm. I looked down at myself in my new form. I had taken on a golden glow. I did not need to walk. I floated. Everything about me was love, goodness and warmth. Suddenly, I felt as if I had been given access to the total knowledge of the universe. I stared at a huge dark wheel containing stars and other celestial bodies that slowly revolved. A deep voice spoke slowly, but I could not make out what it was saying. I was at some kind of entrance. A man stood with authority at the gate. He had black, tight curls and his face seemed somehow familiar. ‘You weren’t expected,’ he said. His lips did not move. Our conversation was entirely telepathic. ‘Well, I’m here now,’ I replied, a little surprised that my lips did not need to move either.'” (Robert Coleman)

Telepathy with a Mischievous Soul in the Void: One woman went through a black tunnel and entered a black void of absolute nothingness. She discovered the darkness existed in every direction. She sensed an entity in the darkness with her and she asked it, “What happened?” Through telepathy, the entity replied, “You’re dead.” The entities reply was as if it enjoyed telling her this. As soon as she realized this, a clear white bright light brought her into a huge, wonderful, stadium or amphitheater where love and music emanated from it. (Pam Anderson)

7. Howard Storm’s Insights Into NDE Telepathy

Howard Storm was rescued from hell by Jesus after Storm repeated a little Sunday School song in his head. Apparently, Jesus heard Storm’s cry for help telepathically and responded. Howard Storm wrote: “The agony that I had suffered during the day was nothing compared to what I was feeling now. I knew then that this was the absolute end of my existence, and it was more horrible than anything I could possibly have imagined. Then a most unusual thing happened. I heard very clearly, once again in my own voice, something that I had learned in nursery Sunday School. It was the little song, “Jesus loves me, yes I know …” and it kept repeating. I don’t know why, but all of a sudden I wanted to believe that. Not having anything left, I wanted to cling to that thought. And I, inside, screamed, “Jesus, please save me.” That thought was screamed with every ounce of strength and feeling left in me. When I did that, I saw, off in the darkness somewhere, the tiniest little star. Not knowing what it was, I presumed it must be a comet or a meteor, because it was moving rapidly. Then I realized it was coming toward me. It was getting very bright, rapidly. When the light came near, its radiance spilled over me, and I just rose up – not with my effort – I just lifted up. Then I saw – and I saw this very plainly – I saw all my wounds, all my tears, all my brokenness, melt away. And I became whole in this radiance. What I did was to cry uncontrollably. I was crying, not out of sadness, but because I was feeling things that I had never felt before in my life. Another thing happened. Suddenly I knew a whole bunch of things. I knew things … I knew that this light, this radiance, knew me. I don’t know how to explain to you that I knew it knew me, I just did. As a matter of fact, I understood that it knew me better than my mother or father did. The luminous entity that embraced me knew me intimately and began to communicate a tremendous sense of knowledge. I knew that he knew everything about me and I was being unconditionally loved and accepted.” (Howard Storm)

Howard Storm describes his surprise in knowing his private thoughts were not so private in the NDE realm: “To my surprise, and also distress, they seemed to be capable of knowing everything I was thinking. I didn’t know whether I would be capable of controlling my thoughts and keeping anything secret. We began to engage in thought exchange, conversation that was very natural, very easy and casual. I heard their voices clearly and individually. They each had a distinct personality with a voice, but they spoke directly to my mind, not my ears. And they used normal, colloquial English. Everything I thought, they knew. They all seemed to know and understand me very well and to be completely familiar with my thoughts and my past. I didn’t feel any desire to ask for someone I had known because they all knew me. Nobody could know me any better. It also didn’t occur to me to try to identify them as uncle or grandfather. It was like going to a large gathering of relatives at Christmas and not being quite able to remember their names or who they are married to or how they are connected to you. But you do know that you are with your family. I don’t know if they were related to me or not. It felt like they were closer to me than anyone I had ever known.” (Howard Storm)

Howard Storm described his surprise, and shock, at discovering how Jesus knew everything he ever thought and did in his entire life: Howard says, “I suddenly realized he had heard what I thought because I hadn’t said anything. I couldn’t read with his mind. He was putting his words into my head in his own voice.” Howard described how he realized how this meant Jesus was also aware of his most private and embarrassing thoughts and actions. Howard thought, ‘I’m really uncomfortable with you knowing everything I’ve ever thought.” All of a sudden Howard had a very vivid image in his mind of a naked woman which was there for all to see. Jesus’ only reaction was a chuckle. Howard concluded that Jesus loved him unconditionally no matter what he thought, did or had done, and that everything was alright anyway. (Howard Storm)

Howard Storm described how NDE telepathy meant complete understanding: “My friends answered lots of questions in funny ways. They really knew the whole tone of what I asked them, even before I got the questions out. When I thought of questions in my head, they really understood them.” (Howard Storm)

Howard Storm was told of a future new world to come where communication would be telepathic: According to Storm’s sources, God wants to usher in the kingdom within the next two hundred years. In order to do so, God had rescinded some of the free will given to creatures, in favor of more divine control over human events. This new world order, according to Howard, will resemble some near-death descriptions of heaven. People will live in peace, harmony, and love. Communication will be telepathic. Travel instantaneous. And the need for clothing and shelter eliminated. (Howard Storm)

8. The Negative Side of NDE Telepathy

There are potentially serious problems with this type of telepathic communication as revealed in some NDE testimonials. I will cite two examples. One of them is from Jayne Smith and the other is from George Ritchie. The following are excerpts from their NDE testimonies.

Jayne Smith’s Insights into the Negative Side of NDE Telepathy

Jayne Smith learned how telepathically receiving “blocks of knowledge” from God was originally an ecstatic experience until it began to go sour: “My consciousness began to expand with the bliss of it all. Suddenly there came into my field of consciousness an entire field of knowledge. It was like a whole block of knowledge that just simply came in and settled itself on me. I knew, what takes several sentences to tell, but it didn’t come in several sentences – it came all in one piece. What I knew was that I was immortal, that I was eternal, that I was indestructible, that I always had been, that I always will be, and that there was no way in this world I could ever be lost … When that block of knowledge was digested by me, as it were, another block of knowledge came in. A whole field of knowledge came in to my being and what I knew then was that the universe runs according to a perfect plan … I reached the point in the rapture of it all where I thought to myself suddenly, the first thought, ‘I wonder how much more of this I can stand before I shatter?’ With that thought, the light began to recede. So, the universe will not let us shatter. We cannot take in more of this bliss and joy than we are able to handle at a time.” (Jayne Smith)

As previously mentioned, from Jayne’s testimony and others I’ve studied, I believe communication in the afterlife is through instantaneous telepathic “blocks” of information rather than by consecutive telepathic ideas. I say this because some NDEs reveal the existence of an “adjustment period” which people entering the afterlife go through where they must “shed” certain aspects of Earthly life and relearn what they forgot before being born. So this is probably the reason why people entering the afterlife (or should I say “re-entering”) find it unusual to communicate this way at first. The problem Jayne experienced was in her single thought expressing her fear about shattering. I believe she was beginning to enter this adjustment period before her Earthly fearful thought got in the way.

George Ritchie’s Insights into the Negative Side of NDE Telepathy

But an even more serious problem can be seen from George Ritchie’s NDE testimony when he describes the nature of communication in the hellish realms: “There were two other things distinctly unique about the beings of this realm. Since hypocrisy is impossible because others know your thoughts the minute you think them, they tend to group with the ones who think the same way they do. In our own realm of the existence, Earth, we have a saying, ‘Birds of a feather flock together.’ The main reason that they stick together is because it is too threatening to be with beings with whom you disagree when they know it.” (George Ritchie)

George Ritchie was shown a hell realm where people where battling each other over their hateful telepathic thoughts they hurled at one another: “At first I thought we were looking at some great battlefield. Everywhere spirits were locked in what looked like fights to the death, writhing, punching, gouging. No weapons of any sort, I saw as I looked closer, only bare hands and feet and teeth. And then I noticed that no one was apparently being injured … If I suspected that I was seeing hell, now I was sure of it. These creatures seemed locked into habits of mind and emotion, into hatred, lust, destructive thought-patterns … It was impossible to tell if the howls of frustration which reached us were actual sounds or only the transference of despairing thoughts. Indeed in this disembodied world it didn’t seem to matter. Whatever anyone thought, however fleetingly or unwillingly, was instantly apparent to all around him, more completely than words could have expressed it, faster than sound waves could have carried it. And the thoughts most frequently communicated had to do with the superior knowledge, or abilities, or background of the thinker. ‘I told you so!’ ‘I always knew!’ ‘Didn’t I warn you!’ were shrieked into the echoing air over and over … What was keeping them here? Why didn’t each one just get up and leave? I could see no reason why the person being screamed at by that man with the contorted face didn’t simply walk away. Or why that young woman didn’t put a thousand miles between herself and the other one who was so furiously beating her with insubstantial fists? They couldn’t actually hold onto their victims, any of these insanely angry beings. There were no fences. Nothing apparently prevented them from simply going off alone.”

“Unless – unless there was no alone in this realm of disembodied spirits. No private corners in a universe where there were no walls. No place that was not inhabited by other beings to whom one was totally exposed at all times. What was it going to be like, I thought with sudden panic, to live forever where my most private thoughts were not private at all? No disguising them, no covering them up, no way to pretend I was anything but what I actually was. How unbearable. Unless of course everyone around me had the same kind of thoughts – Unless there was a kind of consolation in finding others as loathsome as one’s self, even if all we could do was hurl our venom at each other. Perhaps this was the explanation for this hideous plain. Perhaps in the course of eons or of seconds, each creature here had sought out the company of others as pride and hate-filled as himself, until together they formed this society of the damned.” (George Ritchie)

As it were, apparently all auras were completely evident to those in the spiritual world; meaning that there was no concealing one’s thoughts and feelings from anybody. All were completely obvious. This had some ramifications. George Ritchie stated: “Since hypocrisy is impossible because others know your thoughts the minute you think them, they tend to group with the ones who think the same way they do. In our own plane of the existence, earth, we have a saying, “Birds of a feather flock together.” The main reason that they stick together is because it is too threatening to be with beings with whom you disagree when they know it. (George Ritchie)

Howard Storm’s Insights into the Negative Side of NDE Telepathy

Howard Storm described how NDE telepathy even decides your status in the afterlife hierarchy of NDE realms: “God will allow people to be dragged into darkness with like-minded creatures. I have told you, from my personal experience, what goes on in there. I don’t know from what I saw anymore than that, but it’s my suspicion that I only saw the tip of the iceberg. I deserved to be where I was – I was in the right place at the right time. That was the place for me, and the people I was around were perfect company for me. God allowed me to experience that, and then removed me, because he saw something redeeming in putting me through the experience. It was a way to purge me. People who are not allowed to be pulled into darkness, because of their loving nature, are attracted upwards, toward the light.” (Howard Storm)

After Howard Storm was rescued from hell, he was reluctant to enter heaven because of a phenomenon mentioned by Jesus in John 3:19-21. Howard Storm wrote: “I saw off in the distance something that looked like the picture of a galaxy, except that it was larger and there were more stars than I had seen on Earth. There was a great center of brilliance. In the center there was an enormously bright concentration. Outside the center countless millions of spheres of light were flying about entering and leaving what was a great being-ness at the center. It was off in the distance. Then I … I didn’t say it, I thought it. I said, ‘Put me back.’ What I meant by telling the light to put me back, was to put me back into the pit. I was so ashamed of who I was, and what I had been all of my life, that all I wanted to do was hide in the darkness. I didn’t want to go toward the light anymore – I did; yet I didn’t. How many times in my life had I denied and scoffed at the reality before me, and how many thousands of times had I used it as a curse. What incredible intellectual arrogance to use the name as an insult. I was afraid to go closer. I was also aware that the incredible intensity of the emanations might disintegrate what I still experienced as my intact physical body. The being who was supporting me, my friend, was aware of my fear and reluctance and shame. For the first time he spoke to my mind in a male voice and told me that if I was uncomfortable we didn’t have to go closer. So we stopped where we were, still countless miles away from the Great being.” (Howard Storm)

These NDE testimonies demonstrate how one of the most important lessons we must learn on Earth is – not just what we say and do to others – but what we think of others. Perhaps even more: our intent toward others. Only in this world can we say one thing and think or intend something else. The importance of how we think of others can be summed up by Zoroaster, the ancient Persian prophet of Zoroastrianism, whose religion has been summed up this way: “Good thoughts, good words, and good deeds.” This may be one of the important reasons why so many NDErs emphasize the importance of love in this world and the next.

9. Edgar Cayce on Afterlife Telepathy

There is a great deal of information about the afterlife in the thousands of the psychic readings given by Edgar Cayce between 1901 and 1945. He was not a medium in the ordinary sense of the word — he did not have guides nor controls. There were times when he seemed to stop on the beam of light on which he traveled to talk with those who were on other afterlife realms of consciousness. On such occasions we could hear only one side of the conversation.

Many people questioned Cayce about life after death. On one occasion he answered a specific question about communication with the deceased:

Question: “Is it possible for this body, Edgar Cayce, in this state, to communicate with anyone who has passed into the spirit world?”

Edgar Cayce: “The spirit of all that have passed from the physical plane remain about the plane until their development carry them onward or are returned for their development here, when they are in the plane of communication or remain within this sphere, any may be communicated with. There are thousands about us here at present.” (Edgar Cayce Reading 3744-2)

The following question brought further clarification on the subject:

Question: “What is meant by souls within this sphere may be communicated with by the body, Edgar Cayce, in the psychic state?”

Edgar Cayce: “Each and every soul entity, or earthly entity, passing through the earth’s plane, radiates in that plane those conditions that are radiated from the soul or spiritual entity in the individual. This then becomes the fact, the real fact, in the material world. When the body Edgar Cayce is in the psychic or subconscious condition, he is able then to reach all the subconscious minds, when directed to such subconscious minds by suggestion, whether in the material world or in the spiritual world, provided the spiritual entity has not passed entirely into [another level]. Then we only reach those radiations left in earth’s plane that are taken again when entering in earth’s plane, whether [the] entity is conscious of same or not. The consciousness of reaching that condition wherein the physical body may take up that truth known, must be reached by all.” (Edgar Cayce Reading 900-22)

People asked questions about what form people assume in the afterlife. The following excerpt clarified this question:

Edgar Cayce: “For thoughts are deeds, and are children of the relation reached between the mental and the soul, and has its relation to spirit and soul’s plane of existence, as they do in the physical or earth plane. What one thinks continually, they become; what one cherishes in their heart and mind they make a part of the pulsation of their heart, through their own blood cells, and build in their own physical, that which its spirit and soul must feed upon, and that with which it will be possessed, when it passes into the realm for which the other experiences of what it has gained here in the physical plane, must be used.” (Edgar Cayce Reading 3744-4)

Edgar Cayce: “Conditions, thoughts, activities of men in every clime are things; as thoughts are things. They make their impressions upon the skein of time and space. Thus, as they make for their activity, they become as records that may be read by those in accord or attuned to such a condition.” (Edgar Cayce Reading 3976-16).

10. The Biblical Case for Telepathy

Dr. George M. Lamsa (1892-1975) was a renowned Bible scholar, author, and lecturer. Lamsa grew up in a Syrian Aramaic culture whose customs, manner, and language were almost identical to those in the time of Jesus. The fact that his native tongue was Aramaic, full of idioms and parables unchanged since the time of Christ, contributed greatly to the accuracy of the translation of the Bible by translating the Aramaic “Peshitta” — the standard version of the Bible for churches in the Syriac tradition. According to Dr. Lamsa, forty percent of the Bible came through psychic perception in the form of dreams, visions and revelations from God. The Hebrew patriarchs relied on guidance from visions and dreams for the welfare of their tribes. The prophets acted as counselors for kings and princes. All biblical prophets were endowed with the gift of prophecy and nearly all of the predictions which have been made by the prophets have come true. In their dreams and visions they could converse directly with God.

In the Book of Job, the author states how God speaks to people through dreams:

Bible: “For God does speak — now one way, now another — though no one perceives it. In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls on people as they slumber in their beds, he may speak in their ears and terrify them with warnings.” (Job 33:14-16)

The author of the Book of Numbers also wrote of how God speaks to people in their dreams:

Bible: “Then the Lord came down in a pillar of cloud; he stood at the entrance to the tent and summoned Aaron and Miriam. When the two of them stepped forward, he said, ‘Listen to my words: ‘When there is a prophet among you, I, the Lord, reveal myself to them in visions, I speak to them in dreams.” (Numbers 12:5-6)

NDE accounts reveal communication in the afterlife is by telepathy. Thoughts and feelings cannot be hidden from others in the afterlife. In the Bible, Jesus is described having the powers of mental telepathy:

Bible: “Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, ‘Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts?'” (Matthew 9:4)

Jesus is seen in the gospels having the ability to read people’s minds using telepathy. Because Jesus was obviously a highly evolved spiritual being, we can probably assume all spirit beings have telepathic powers. Because the afterlife has been described by many experiencers as a realm of pure thought, it wouldn’t be a great leap of faith to conclude the following: People exist in the afterlife as thought forms where everyone’s thoughts are not secret. And this is what NDE accounts describe – an afterlife where people cannot hide anything from others — even their thoughts. The following is another Bible verse supporting this idea:

Bible: “Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men’s hearts.” (1 Corinthians 4:5)

To have your true inner self and thoughts revealed to everyone can be a hell for those who are mostly motivated by negative forces. But to have your true inner self and thoughts revealed to everyone can be a heaven for those who are mostly motivated positive forces. NDEs support the idea of everyone’s true inner nature being a part of God and how those who enter the afterlife actually realize their true inner nature. Those people who live a life against their divine inner self will face difficulties when they enter the spirit realm. This afterlife process is self-realization and self-judgment – not eternal damnation. During the NDE life review there is no judgment from God.

Bible: “Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son.” (John 5:22)

Bible: “As for the person who hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save it. There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words, that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day.” (John 12:47-48)

The only judgment that exists after death is self-judgment. There we enter the light of God where all is made known.

Bible: “This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.” (John 3:19-21)

The Bible verse above describes people dwelling in the dark to escape from having the light of God reveal their inner divine nature and life of ignorance – both of which are exposed to everyone in the heavenly realms.

NDErs have affirmed evil to actually be spiritual ignorance or “darkness” — the absence of light. In the Bible, light is always a reference to God and knowledge of God. Those people who lived a life of “darkness” (ignorance) will find it is incompatible with their true divine nature. This self-realization can truly be hell for such people. It is self-realization and self-judgment. The Bible verse below describes how God’s light can shine in the darkness of our hearts – even before we die.

Bible: “For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 4:6)

One particular Bible passage can be interpreted to mean the angels we judge are actually ourselves:

Bible: “Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if you are to judge the world, are you not competent to judge trivial cases? Do you not know we will judge angels?” (1 Corinthians 6:2-3)

“Angels” is a word sometimes used in the Bible to apply to humans. Here are some of them:

Bible: “See that you do not look down on one of these little ones (children). For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.” (Matthew 18:10)

Bible: “Peter knocked at the outer entrance, and a servant girl named Rhoda came to answer the door. When she recognized Peter’s voice, she was so overjoyed she ran back without opening it and exclaimed, ‘Peter is at the door!’ ‘You’re out of your mind,’ they told her. When she kept insisting that it was so, they said, ‘It must be his angel.’ (Acts 12:13-15)

Bible: “At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.” (Matthew 22:30)

Bible: “Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” (Hebrews 13:2)

The Hebrew and Judeo-Christian prophets of the Bible played an important part in the history of religion and in history in general. They shaped the destinies of great nations; and, in their dreams and visions, saw what the leaders of the world could not see.

11. Links to Scholarly Articles on NDE Telepathy

There are many excellent articles on NDE Telepathy from qualified sources. Here are some of the best I have found:

Alvarado, A. (2006). Neglected near-death phenomena (PDF). Journal of Near-Death Studies, Volume 24, Number 3, Spring 2006, pp 131-151.

Beck, T. E. & Colli, J. E. (2003). A quantum biomechanical basis for near-death life reviews (PDF). Journal of Near-Death Studies, Volume 21, Number 3, Spring 2003, pp 169-189.

Facco, E., Agrillo, C. & Greyson, B. (2015). Epistemological implications of near-death experiences and other non-ordinary mental expressions: Moving beyond the concept of altered state of consciousness (PDF). Medical Hypotheses, Volume 85, Issue 1, pp. 85-93.

Fenwick P. (2012) Can near-death experiences contribute to the debate on consciousness? (PDF). In: Moreira-Almeida A., Santana Santos F. (eds) Exploring Frontiers of the Mind-Brain Relationship. Mindfulness in Behavioral Health. Springer, New York, NY.

Greyson, B. (1983). Increase in psychic phenomena following near-death experiences (PDF). Theta, Number 11, pp. 26-29.

Greyson, B. (2008). The mystical impact of near-death experiences (PDF). Shift: At the Frontiers of Consciousness, Number 17, Dec. 2007 – Feb. 2008, pp. 8-13.

Howarth, G. & Kellehear, A. (2001). Shared near-death and related illness experiences: steps on an unscheduled journey (PDF). Journal of Near-Death Studies, Volume 20, Number 2, Winter 2001, pp. 71-85.

Kohr, R. (1983). Near-death experience, altered states, and psi sensitivity (PDF). Journal of Near-Death Studies, Volume 3, Number 2, Winter 1983, pp 157-177.

Krippner, S. & Fracasso, C. (2011). Dreams, telepathy, and various states of consciousness. NeuroQuantology, Volume 9, Number 1, pp. 385-660.

Manev, I. (2014). A hypothesis regarding the mechanism of telepathy, letter to the editor (PDF). Journal of Near-Death Studies, Volume 32, Number 4, Summer 2014, pp 241-243.

Nouri, F. M. & Holden, J. M. (2008). Electromagnetic aftereffects of near-death experiences (PDF). Journal of Near-­Death Studies, Volume 27, Number 2, Winter 2008, pp. 83-110.

Persinger, M. A., & Schaut, G. B. (1988). Geomagnetic factors in subjective telepathic, precognitive, and postmortem experiences. Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, Volume 82, Number 3, pp. 217-235.

Ring, K. & Cooper, S. (1997). Near-death and out-of-body in the blind: A study of apparent eyeless vision (PDF). Journal of Near-Death Studies, Volume 16, Number 2, Winter 1997, pp. 101-147.

Rousseau, D. (2011). Near-death experiences and the mind-body relationship: A systems-theoretical perspective (PDF). Journal of Near-­Death Studies, Volume 29, Number 3, Spring 2011, pp. 399-435.

Sutherland, C. (1989). Psychic phenomena following near-death experiences: An Australian study (PDF). Journal of Near-Death Studies, Volume 8, Number 2, Winter 1989, pp 93–102.