I was inclined to write this article when I ran across a bulletin board on the American on Line Internet service. The board was prefaced with a question concerning what constituted a Near Death Experience: "... as some scientists believe, a hallucination produced by the disruption of electrical waves in a dying brain? Either way, those who have gone through a near-death experience report that their lives are dramatically changed for the better. Have you ever had such an experience? If so, share your story by clicking below..." I am paraphrasing the prefix.
I read through a number of the postings and was amazed to find so few such experiences accounted and equally surprised to see more people asking for people who had an NDE to assure them that there was something on the other side; postings from people who had lost loved ones recently and were bereft.
I have heard all the arguments about lack of oxygen, drugs in the body and the disruption of electrical waves. I had a near death experience. Obviously these ?scientists? have not or if they have still feel a need to make sure there is a logical and scientific reason behind NDE?s. Let me pose these questions for you to ponder: If you have a dream and I have a dream what do you think the chances are that we will have the same dream or one that is as close as most NDE's? Pretty thin theory, right? Or substitute ?drugs, or oxygen or anything else for dream? and see if you think it would be possible for so many people to have such similar experiences.
On June 21, 1974 I delivered a baby boy that weighted 9 lbs. and 15 oz. and was 23 inches long. I had the child by natural delivery with no problems. I was in an army hospital in Nurnburg, Germany in a ward of many women for recovery. My husband had just gone to call the family five hours after the delivery to let them know of the birth and that all was well when suddenly I realized that with every beat of my heart my life's blood was leaving my body. I tried to reach my buzzer but could not. I frantically asked the other women if they could reach theirs. They could not. By this time I was about to lose conciseness.
I knew that I would die if I passed out because no one was checking on me. I knew that it would not take many minutes for all of my blood to pump out of me. In a last effort the primal need of survival taking over, I screamed for help. I remember sinking into total oblivion.
The next thing I remember is this strange sensation of not being connected to my body anymore. I realized that my spirit or I was looking down upon my body apparently from the ceiling. It was my body, but it was not me because I was watching. I was not alarmed. I saw a nurse run in, pull up the sheet and run out bringing back a host of people donned in hospital garb. They were beating on my stomach, injecting me, and doing all kinds of medical things to save me. Still, I was not frightened. It was strange because I knew I was not there anymore, not in that empty shell.
My next memory is of being in a darkened tunnel. It was very quiet, peaceful and there was a glorious light at the end. I wish I could express in words this total peace and harmony I felt. No fear, no worries, no concerns for the baby I had wanted so desperately and tried so hard to conceive for so long. I had no thoughts or uneasiness for anyone, just a sense of peace. Blissful, heavenly peace. I was drunk with it. Nothing I had ever felt before or after that experience has ever even come close to the happiness, the awesome feeling that something so wonderful was about to happen that I wanted more than anything to experience it in its entirety.
Surprisingly and very suddenly a voice said to me, "You have to go back." I don't recall seeing anyone. I don't know from where the voice came. I just knew I did not want to go back. Then the voice said, "You have to go back to take care of your baby." I have tried so many times to recreate this all, to try to detect whose voice spoke to me, all in vain. I think it was neither male nor female, therefore according to the Bible and my beliefs, I believe it must have been an Angel. The Bible says there are neither male nor female in Heaven.
Opening my eyes from the hospital bed I found myself looking up at all of the people working on me. I have no idea how much time had lapsed. A nurse held my hand and I questioned her, "Am I going to die?" She just laughed and said I was going to be fine. I was confused, weak and suddenly wanted to see my baby. It was 23 hours from his birth before I got to see him due to my condition. I was distrustful of the staff thinking that something was wrong with him. After all I was alive because I was sent back to ?take care of my baby?
I never told anyone about my experience until years later. When I had my near death experience, I did not know what it was and was afraid people would think I was crazy. During our stay in the hospital, I insisted that my husband go and check on that baby every few minutes. I was sent back to 'take care of my baby,' so I automatically assumed something was wrong with my baby. Looking now at my grown son, I realize how special he is. I named him Christopher and the irony of that is he does carry Christ in his heart always.
I have learned many things throughout the years since my NDE. I have another son, he needed looking after also. He is also very special, a silent hero. I am very proud to be his mother.
Within the last two years I have come to realize that some of us are chosen for these NDE's. I am not sure why but I do know that it is a gift, a gift that must be shared. I was fortunate enough to be able to help my dear Mama pass over when her sweet spirit was ready. She was afraid of everything all of her life and I believe that this was the gift that helped give her peace as she took her last breaths.
Just before Thanksgiving this year my Daddy died. Though I was not with him at the time, upon reflection, I am sure that Daddy would not want me to see him that way. He was there with Mama and he remembered the things I told her. My brother called me from the hospital the night before he died (he died early the next morning) because no one could calm him down. Without going into a lot of detail, I knew what was wrong even though he could not really speak and be understood, just a few words we could make out but he understood everything. I told him I loved him, I told him he had to calm down that he couldn't leave yet, I even asked him if he was mad at me for not being there to which I heard a resounding "No!"
I told Daddy that I was praying for him and that even though he could not pray out loud he could pray in his head, I told him it would be all right. Almost immediately I could hear his breath calm. He was scared and needed comfort and couldn't ask. God gave me a special preview with my NDE and with it came a duty. I take that very seriously.
I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that there is life after death. I know what I experienced and I know it was real. If Heaven is anything like that I long to go there. There is an excellent book entitled, To Hell and Back written by Maurice S. Rawlings, a Christian cardiologist. Being a cardiologist he had many experiences seeing people die on the operating table and witnessing their words and actions; the fortunate ones who received another chance at life. The really interesting points in his book were that there are bad experiences as well as good. Some people have gone the other way or even were almost tricked to go the wrong way.
This story is true and my very own first hand NDE. It remains fresh in my mind as though it was yesterday instead of thirty-two years ago. Words are still inadequate to describe this experience.
True Near Death Experiences
"For we know that when this tent we live in now is taken down... when we die
and leave these bodies...we will have wonderful new bodies in Heaven, homes
that will be ours for evermore, made for us by God Himself, without human hands."
II Corinthians 5:1 (Living Bible)
After being stoned to death in Lystra by the furious mob who resented his ministry and miracles, Saint Paul was snatched from his broken body up into Paradise before being replaced into the repaired frame a few minutes later. Saint Paul speaks of a visit to Heaven.
"I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven. And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. Of such an one will I glory: yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities." II Corinthians 12:2-5 (KJV).
A Scientist who had a near death experience:
Joyce Hawkes, a cell biologist with a PhD, had an accident that forever changed her life — and her view of science. She suffered a concussion from a falling window. "I think that part of me — that my spirit, my soul — left my body and went to another reality," she said. She was surprised at the experience.
"It just was not part of the paradigm in which I lived as a scientist," Hawkes recalled. "it was a big surprise to me to have this sense of something different than the body — a consciousness different than the body — and to be in this wonderfully healing, peaceful, nurturing place."
"I think what I learned was that there truly is no death, that there is a change in state from a physical form to a spirit form, and that there's nothing to fear about that passage," she said.