Ann C's Experience
As mentioned above, I was depressed and thinking about suicide (though I had no plan). I just gave up caring about anything in life, and stayed in my bed for three days. I only left bed to use the bathroom, but did not eat. The shades were drawn on my windows, the room was dark. I felt alone, despondent, empty, dead. I was certain that my life was going to end.
In desperation I read the bible (my roommate's, since I'm not Christian). The passages made sense to me for the first time in my life, as if they were layered with deeper meaning (beyond the obvious). I did a lot of crying, and prayed for help. I felt like I was dying, and these prayers were desperate. I was plagued with the question of "suffering". I asked, "If there is a God, than why is there so much suffering on this planet? What is this all about? How could a loving God create this?" Actually, these were questions that I had pondered my entire life, and the main reason why I was an atheist. I could NOT believe that a loving God would allow us to suffer. I did not want to live in this sorrowful world anymore.
The next day, my ex-boyfriend stopped by the house and FORGAVE me for something horrible I had done to him (I had cheated on him). I couldn't believe that he would forgive me, and even speak kindly to me. I broke down and cried.
Suddenly, after talking with Chris for a while on the couch in the living room, an all-consuming or overwhelming feeling of peace washed over me. I have NEVER felt a calmness and peace that was so total in my life. It was incredible, and words cannot convey how mind-blowing. And then also suddenly, but quietly, almost naturally, understanding began to dawn -- I found myself TALKING to some voice, an invisible presence, in my MIND. Or not quite in my mind, but also not out-loud (Chris couldn't hear anything). It was like some kind of telepathy. It was more effective communication than language, for it was total and beyond words -- whole concepts were somehow efficiently yet wordless communicated between this presence and I.
The presence LOVED me so completely, I was blown away, convinced that this was God. It seemed like God was talking to me! The love generated from this presence to me was unlike anything I've ever felt on this earth, even from my parents. It was complete, it seemed to fill the room. I felt cherished and held, as if I was a valuable person to this presence. It was very personal, and fulfilled what I had been looking for my entire life -- I felt completely accepted and embraced.
I also felt like this being knew me, and I knew him (yes, felt like a male presence). Felt like an old friend, someone I've always known. The voice described to be the nature of suffering, how everything is RIGHT in the world (rather, as it should be, including the sorrowful parts), and the temporary nature of our human experience. The presence said over and over again, "Everything is OK!", and in turn I told Chris with complete conviction, "Hey Chris, everything is OK! Don't you feel that too?". Chris must have thought I was acting really bizarre, for I could not stop smiling and spouting out all of the wonderful, simple truths that the presence was telling me.
At the same time, all of the "truths" related to me by the presence via telepathy sounded like facts I had always known, but somehow forgot. The voice lovingly laughed at me in a way that said, "silly child, look what you convinced yourself to be true. Remember now what really is true. See how silly you were?" It was all very loving. The presence was LAUGHING at me b/c 1)I had forgotten concepts that were so obvious, and 2)I had been living my life as if my identity as a human was real and fixed, when in fact it was all just an ILLUSION. Somehow I had forgotten that though there are intense/sorrowful dramas on this earth, our REAL natures are completely untouched by the sadness of the world. None of the stuff we believe to be important is even real! It's as if we're on this earth playing roles, following scripts -- but in actuality we're OK and not who we think we are. I "saw" internally a panorama of all the humans on earth, and how we're all caught up in our dramas, fictions of our own making! The presence laughed as if saying, "isn't it silly how you thought all of this was real? Don't you remember who you really are?". To remember all of these things again was so delightful, blissful, just the happiest discovery. I laughed at myself b/c I "remembered" what this all was truly about, who I really am, and b/c EVERYTHING IS OK!
Other parts to the experience -- I seemed to be WAY more intelligent and articulate than I am in normal life. I usually have a difficult time explaining concepts to other people, but during this experience, "truths" seemed to flood out of me in the most beautiful language. I kept telling Chris things as if I were teaching him, it just flowed out of my mouth. I was filled with peace and wisdom and love.
associated medications or substances with the potential to affect the
Was the kind of experience difficult to express in words? Yes
1)Cannot remember many of the "truths" that I realized at the time, 2)Overwhelming feelings of peace and love from some entity in my presence who communicated via telepathy (God?), 3)Complete understanding/wisdom and contentment that cannot be described, 4)Feelings of pure bliss. It felt more REAL than anything I've ever experienced -- as if I had real clarity for the first time in my life. I knew and understood so much about the nature of reality and the reason there is suffering on Earth -- I cannot remember what was so obvious in the experience. It was so intense, real and wonderful, that I can't convey any of it in words (words are too limiting).
At the time of this experience, was there an associated life threatening event? Uncertain
For the prior 3 days before this experience, I completely gave up any attachment to my existence and just wanted to die. I was waiting for death to happen. I thought about suicide, but did not have a plan. It felt as if my life was truly over. Hard to explain. Very dark place internally. FELT like "near death".
What was your level of consciousness and alertness during the experience? Very alert, and dually conscious of the outer room/Chris, and of the inner/telepathic dialogue with the loving presence.
Was the experience dream like in any way? NO! It was more real than anything I've ever experienced. I realized that my life, my ENTIRE LIFE, had felt like a dream until that moment. It was as if I had awoken. It was very real.
Did you experience a separation of your consciousness from your body? No
Did you meet or see any other beings? Yes
But it was a sensed presence, someone I felt had always been with me, who knew me intimately. He LOVED me and completely accepted everything about me, without judgment. We communicated in a way that is more efficient and quicker than language -- by whole thoughts somehow, including visual understanding. Hard to explain. It was complete. Closest description is "telepathic", though I've never had telepathic communication before & know that it included more than just thoughts...
Did you experience a review of past events in your life? No
We just discussed my perspective/outlook on life, and how silly and self-created it had been.
Did you observe or hear anything regarding people or events during your experience that could be verified later? No
Did you see or visit any beautiful or otherwise distinctive locations, levels or dimensions? No
Did you have any sense of altered space or time? Yes
Yes, there was a timeless quality about the whole thing. I cannot tell you how long this communication lasted. It was outside of time.
Did you have a sense of knowing, special knowledge, universal order and/or purpose? Yes
Explained above. Yes, I felt like EVERYTHING had it's purpose, including all of the suffering on earth. For some reason we are not supposed to remember who we really are while we're experiencing our dramas -- we are to be (temporarily) convinced that what we experience on earth in our lives is real. It's all about learning somehow. And LOVE for others is the absolute #1 most important thing, we are to be loving and forgiving. We should know that EVERYTHING IS OK and then just live our lives to the best of our ability out of that knowledge.
experience, I was CONVINCED that 1)there is a God (and I had not believed in a
God before), and 2)that God loves me completely, unreservedly, and in a huge
way (it's a PERSONAL love, completely mind-blowing).
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? No
Did you become aware of future events? No
Were you involved in or aware of a decision regarding your return to the body? My experience seemed to end naturally. I felt the love/peace/contentment for several weeks afterward. I felt like the presence was still with me, as he had always been, but there was no more telepathic communication. I kept telling myself afterwards, "I cannot forget this! I've got to remember this! I can't fall asleep again!", but knowing that the understandings would gradually fade.
Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience that you did not have prior to the experience? No
Did you have any changes of attitudes or beliefs following the experience? Yes
Atheist before the experience, CONVINCED that there is a God after the experience. Just a "knowing" now. My reasoning could have never taken me there. Also, now feel that I must look beyond what each person presents, that I must try to see the love and beauty that lies within -- no matter how the person presents themselves to the outer world -- for in truth they are loved and loving. I remind myself often that we are all caught in dramas, that in truth everything is OK (though something may not make sense to us). I try to be loving and forgiving, and recognize when I make mistakes.
organized religion/faith. Not Christian or any other religion. Just believe
that God is LOVE.
How has the experience affected your relationships? Daily life? Religious practices? Career choices? Career choice -- wanted to do something that allows me to grow spiritually as a person, to demonstrate love/compassion for others, and to tell suffering people that "everything is OK". Led me to become a nurse.
Has your life changed specifically as a result of your experience? Yes
Yes. Never suicidal/despondent since. I know that my life has purpose and meaning, that I'm here for a reason and have things to do, and that everything truly makes sense in the big picture. I live with less doubt, fear and worry.
Have you shared this experience with others? Yes
Husband. He believes AND doubts me. It's not possible to convey the intensity of the experience to another human being, so I can't make him believe just with words. Rob trusts me b/c I'm an honest/rational person, but at the same time all of this doesn't fit into his rational explanation of the world. So he remains suspended, and this is OK. I doubt most of what other people describe, too. However, I think people need to have this type of experience before they can really believe that it's possible. Make sense? Seeing (and experiencing) is believing.
told anyone else. It was very personal, and there is no reason for me to try to
convince others that it really happened.
What emotions did you experience following your experience? Bliss, love, peace, all of the same stuff. It gradually faded, over a period of weeks.
What was the best and worst part of your experience? Best -- that it happened! It has helped form the person I am today.
that it ended. That I haven't experienced anything like it since.
Is there anything else you would like to add concerning the experience? Wish everyone could have an experience like this.
Following the experience, have you had any other events in your life, medications or substances which reproduced any part of the experience? No
Alcohol creates a very hazy, dumbed-down experience. This was completely different -- it was like waking from a dream!