Elizabeth C's Experience
I was 21 and studying for my end of year exams at university. I was more than a little bit stressed, and was lying in bed worrying about how little I knew. I was wide awake at the time when I realised that my breathing had started slowing down. I concentrated on what was happening, and noticed that my breathing had stopped altogether, but this didnt bother me. I wasnt doing it consciously. My eyes were closed and my mouth was open and it seemed as if my body was able to get enough oxygen without breathing. Then I noticed my heart rate was very slow (it was normally about 75 beats) and seemed to only be about 10.
I then felt as if I was falling inside myself. This bit is very hard to explain, but I felt as if my consciousness was narrowing down into the size of an atom while it was expanding at the same time to cover a vast area. This experience made me feel light headed as I was doing two seperate things at once. I found I could concentrate on both, and the smaller I became, the larger my consciousness (for want of a better word) expanded. I realised I was exploring the link between every living thing and myself, which was a revelation in itself.
I was pushing out my thought, when I realised it had become so big it was encompassing the world. The sheer size of it was enough to be mind-blowing. I 'pushed' harder to see what would happen, and I realised I was in a space where everything started. I called it the void, and have since discovered that other people have experienced the same thing, and used the same term! I was 'floating' (not my body but it seemed to be my eyes and something wispy trailing behind me) in a vast place where everything was colourless, but it seemed like it was filled with the essence of everything, although it was empty.
I then concentrated on pushing myself outwards (while still concentrating on the tiny atom inside me) and suddenly I was shooting through space at a speed which was unbelievable. I felt I was attached to my 'atom' by a kind of thread. I felt a 'shift' and looked 'down' and saw I was moving backwards away from earth, watching it recede.
Then a soft but intense white light started forming around me from behind, and spreading around the sides of me. I looked sideways and found myself transfixed by it. I felt that it was alive and loving, and was welcoming me back home. It seemed to be a being of some kind - all knowing and all loving. I felt so uplifted and joyous, calm and unafraid. It was rapturous, and seemed to enfold me somehow.
I began to realise the reason we are put on earth and how we are all connected, and that 'God's' plan is a good one that is unfolding as it should. Although nobody spoke to me, I felt what i needed to know, and how to make my life and those around me better, just by being loving and caring.
I felt I had been given a job to do, and that I had to go back to earth to finish it. I knew that if I turned around and looked directly into the light my body would die, and my 'thread' would snap. There was never a choice to stay or go. It was as if I was given a purpose to fulfil, and the knowledge of how to go about it. So with a very heavy heart, I looked at my thread and 'travelled' back down it into my body. It was as though I was being sent from home to go back to earth.
When I got back to my body, I came 'in' with a kind of thump, that almost knocked me out of bed. I immediately took a huge gasp of air, and my heart started thumping wildly. That subsided quickly, and I was left feeling very peaceful and overawed by my experience.
Was the kind of experience difficult to express in words? Yes I found I 'knew' certain things about life and reality which i cannot describe to other people, as i would get a 'block' between my brain and my mouth. If I really try to think about the things I have found out, my brain will start thinking about ordinary things, and drown my other thoughts out. Also some experiences were indescribable, as they were more intuitive feelings and abstract knowledge rather than concrete concepts or ideas
At the time of this experience, was there an associated life threatening event? Yes I was lying in bed trying to sleep when I noticed that I had stopped breathing, and my heart rate had slowed right down. Oddly enough this wasn't alarming!
What was your level of consciousness and alertness during the experience? Although I was trying to sleep, I wasn't tired. When it started happening I was 100% conscious, and hyper-alert
Was the experience dream like in any way? No, it felt very real
Did you experience a separation of your consciousness from your body? Yes I felt like I was just 'eyes and a brain' with something trailing behind me. I had no feeling of a body at all. I was able to move by willing myself to. I moved in an undulating fashion, requiring more 'will power' to move upwards
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Alarm at first, mixed with confusion, and exhilaration whilst moving away from earth, then absolute joy and love, peace and a powerful knowing. Also a knowledge of 'truth'
Did you hear any unusual sounds or noises? I didnt hear anything at all. I was preoccupied with looking and feeling at the time though
Did you see a light? Yes Although I was travelling backwards, I could feel the light behind me, and I looked at its edges. It was vast, alive, loving and welcoming. I felt like I was going HOME! It was white, very bright and pure but not blinding.
Did you meet or see any other beings? Yes Although it was another time (when I was 20) I had an angel visit me in my bedroom. It was tall, had magnificent white wings which came about 30cm above its head, and it was wearing a white robe - although it wasnt really material, more like a a shimmer. Cant really explain. I was trying to sleep (again) and it just appeared at the foot of my bed and 'spoke' only 5 words - "Elizabeth, everything will be alright". I describe the angel as 'it' because it was not male, female or hemaphrodite, but something altogether different. I feel awful saying 'it' though, as the term seems demeaning. The angel had long white pearly straight hair, and a face which was devoid of emotion, lines or blemishes, and it spoke to me from inside my head. Strangely enough, I wasn't scared or suprised when it appeared, just focussed all of my attention on it. It wasn't until I woke the next day that I was stunned! Of course nobody believes I have had a visitation!
Did you experiment while out of the body or in another, altered state? No
Not at the time, but I have developed ways to go to the 'void' at will (although sometimes it wont happen for me!)
Did you notice how your 5 senses were working, and if so, how were they different? Uncertain I didnt have touch, taste, hearing or smell. But my eyes were working overtime - it was as if a subtle shift had happened and I was seeing in a different way
Did you have any sense of altered space or time? Yes Dimensions as we know them are very limited, I seemed to be able to ignore conventional '3 dimensional space' and experience all dimensions at once (and there are more than 3!). I am not sure about time
Did you have a sense of knowing, special knowledge, universal order and/or purpose? Yes VERY hard to explain, but to sum it all up very simplistically, there are many ways of knowing truth that cant be limited by logic or the physical senses; that EVERYTHING is as it should be, and that everything will be alright; that there is definitely life after death; and that everyone and everything is connected
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Yes I didnt cross the boundary (mine was the limit to which the 'thread' that kept me anchored on earth would let me go), but I knew if I broke the thread and looked directly into the light, I was never going back. As the saying goes - "it wasn't my time"!
Were you involved in or aware of a decision regarding your return to the body? Yes I felt like I was being shown what I could look forward to after death, and I was given knowledge to help me live a better life. I felt like I was about to go home to the light, but had a few more things to do on earth before I could return home. I felt a huge weight of responsibility and sadness, but there was never the option of remaining there. When I came back to my body i felt very peaceful and awed by what i had experienced
Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience that you did not have prior to the experience? Yes I can now see ghosts/spirits
I know when people close to me are dying
My psychic abilities have increased - especially with my friends and family
I can see auras
Did you have any changes of attitudes or beliefs following the experience? Yes I am now a very spiritual person. I believe in 'God' (for want of a better term) but do not agree with the concept of organised religion, except in the major tenents of religion (peace, love, harmony, truthfulness, etc). I also try to help others more, and find time for prayer and meditation.
How has the experience affected your relationships? Daily life? Religious practices? Career choices?
I am attending university, studying to becoming a naturopath, as this form of health care feels more natural and life enhancing than nursing.
I feel a need to be outside more now, especially in the mountains and at the beach. Art in all its forms has become very important and soothing for me. I know it sounds very 'alternative' but I have lived a very logical, analytical life which has been shattered by my experiences. Im still trying to get my head around some things which I know are better 'felt' than understood.
Has your life changed specifically as a result of your experience? Yes I feel more of a connection with the world and with living things. I am in the process of changing occupations, and now have no fear at all of death (except HOW im going to die!). I have also become more artistic, and tolerant of peoples behaviour
Have you shared this experience with others? Yes Most people dont want to listen to my experiences, and they become very uncomfortable. None of the people I have spoken to have ever had any experiences like mine, and think I am dreaming, or tell me im hallucinating, which is very upsetting for me. Some will listen, and say it's the 'devils' work, and others tell me to forget about it. The only person who was positive and excited about what I told him was into marijuana and other drugs. The reason I found this web site was because I was looking for other people who had experienced the same kind of things, to justify my sanity to myself!
What emotions did you experience following your experience? I felt very peaceful, determined, calm, energised and joyous. I also had bouts of longing to go back 'home'
What was the best and worst part of your experience? Best was being enveloped by the light and feeling so loved and secure. The worst was coming back into my body, because I really didnt want to be there anymore.
Following the experience, have you had any other events in your life, medications or substances which reproduced any part of the experience? Yes No medications or substances, but I can now meditate and go into the void. Unfortunately I havent seen the light again
Please offer any suggestions you may have to improve this questionnaire. No its very thorough, and doesn't appear to denigrate the experience in any way. Its lovely to have a way of speaking about this!