Max A's Experience
On the evening before this experience I heard about the Paris attacks. I was shocked, what is unusual for me. Usually I don't feel concerned about news. This time I told myself that this could have been me, if I had been there. The following night I was dreaming about death. I'm talking about it because this dream held sense and a large emotional load. It is completely involved in what came up afterwards. I saw my friends being enveloped by an invisible embrace and dropping dead, without any pain. I didn't feel sad for them, but I found that it was unfair, they even couldn't defend themselves.
When I woke up I took the time to
imprint this dream in my memory, as I sometimes do. When doing that, I
unintentionally evoked the feeling of death that had been in my dream. It popped
up like a presence above me and started to wrap around my body. It was slightly
scary to feel this presence tightening it's embrace. I had the impression of
sensing it's intention. A moment later it pulled very strongly and I felt myself
being snatched from my body. I didn't agree. I said to myself 'That's it, I'm
dying, it's over?'. I had the impression that it wanted to carry me on, but that
it was waiting for me to feel ready.
The thought that I wasn't stopping to exist was reassuring me, and so I let go.
Everything got black and I was taken someplace outside of the world. I wasn't on
a definite place, it was very 'meta' (metaphysical). I felt very free and
appeased, not at all alone, nor concerned about the things of my life. I had the
impression to advance in a tube with poorly defined outlines, at first slowly,
then more and more fast. As I accelerated the presence became more defined and
the outlines less dark. In the end I was projected into a large flash of white
light which was alive and magnificent. It was very powerful. In the following
moment everything came down and I found myself in my bed, my heart was beating
very hard. I used to think that this kind of experience was reserved to those
having a brush with death.
At the time of your experience was there an associated life-threatening event? No
Was the experience difficult to express in words? Yes This is something that happened to me only once, but everything seemed quite familiar and evident. I have the impression that it is something so very special, that it has to be experienced in order to understand the sensations well. Words lack strength and nuance. Or you would have to invent new words, because the existing ones do not allow to describe accurately what it is. And even then, it wouldn't be a satisfactory solution.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? When I saw the explosion of light.
How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal everyday consciousness and alertness? More consciousness and alertness than normal My emotions were very powerful and very clear, and my senses on alert. I had the impression that something important and fundamental was happening.
Please compare your vision during the experience to your everyday vision that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Before the experience I was mentally visualizing my thoughts as usual. During the experience it was rather as if being in a very clear dream. But the essence of the experience was not visual.
Please compare your hearing during the experience to your everyday hearing that you had immediately prior to the time of the experience. Before the experience I heard the noises of the street (footsteps, cars, voices of passers by). During the experience I didn't care at all about it. The moment of the bright flash gave me a strong auditory hallucination, like a muffled rumbling which was exploding suddenly.
Did you see or hear any earthly events that were occurring during a time that your consciousness / awareness was apart from your physical / earthly body? Yes
What emotions did you feel during the experience? I was happy, calm and at the same time excited. I felt deeply accepted and appreciated. I knew that everything would be fine, and that I was where I should be.
Did you pass into or through a tunnel? Yes The tunnel was not sharply defined. I entered it, not seeing where it started. I felt aspirated towards the end which was the place of a strong presence towards whom I tended. The intensity of the sensations that I had kept increasing, as I approached the end. Everything stopped with a large flash that was shaking me up.
Did you see an unearthly light? Yes It was a vague light that kept getting sharper until it exploded into a flash of white light that overwhelmed me.
Did you seem to encounter a mystical being or presence, or hear an unidentifiable voice? I encountered a definite being, or a voice clearly of mystical or unearthly origin
I wouldn't say 'encountered', as it was not a person. The presence was so very strong that I could have merged in it. I sensed it as immense, beyond time, absolutely calm and benevolent.
Did you encounter or become aware of any beings who previously lived on earth who are described by name in religions (for example: Jesus, Muhammad, Buddha, etc.)? No
Did you encounter or become aware of any deceased (or alive) beings? No
Did you become aware of past events in your life during your experience? No
Did you seem to enter some other, unearthly world? A clearly mystical or unearthly realm
I had a feeling of not being in a place, I didn't know at all 'where' I have been, the only point of reference I had, was the omnipresence of a superior intention.
Did time seem to speed up or slow down? Everything seemed to be happening at once; or time stopped or lost all meaning
There was no fixed time, at the beginning I had the impression that everything happened slowly, and things accelerated up to the very short final moment of the bright flash, but what could very well last since ever and would still be there outside of time.
Did you suddenly seem to understand everything? I wouldn't say understanding. It was a feeling of perfect evidence. As if everything could be summed up in this sensation.
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Yes
After the moment of the bright flash, everything suddenly came down. I came back without transition to my body in my normal state, even though I was turned upside down by what happened.
Did you come to a border or point of no return? No
Did scenes from the future come to you? No
During your experience, did you encounter any specific information / awareness suggesting that there either is (or is not) continued existence after earthly life (“life after death”)? Yes I had the feeling that my life had ended, that I left my body behind, but that I still existed, and I even felt more alive.
During your experience, did you encounter any specific information / awareness that God or a supreme being either does (or does not) exist? Yes The encounter with the flash of white light and the impression of being in the middle of an extraordinary presence, that knows everything, encompasses everything what exists and is radiating a feeling of peace, goodness, calm, acceptation. If a higher God exists, then this is him, I think.
During your experience, did you encounter any specific information / awareness that you either did (or did not) exist prior to this lifetime? No
During your experience, did you encounter any specific information / awareness that a mystical universal connection or unity/oneness either does (or does not) exist? No
During your experience, did you encounter any specific information / awareness regarding earthly life’s meaning or purpose? No
During your experience, did you encounter any specific information / awareness regarding earthly life’s difficulties, challenges, or hardships? No
During your experience, did you encounter any specific information / awareness regarding love? No
During your experience, did you encounter any other specific information / awareness that you have not shared in other questions that is relevant to living our earthly lives? No
Did you have a sense of knowing special knowledge or purpose? No
What occurred during your experience included: Content that was both consistent and not consistent with the beliefs you had at the time of your exp
How accurately do you remember the experience in comparison to other life events that occurred around the time of the experience? I remember the experience more accurately than other life events that occurred around the time of th A strong emotion tends to fix a memory. I have other memories that are as strong as this one, and that are absolutely not 'mystical'.
My experience directly resulted in: No changes in my life
Did you have any changes in your values or beliefs after the experience that occurred as a result of the experience? Uncertain It brings meaning, but I don't see well, how this has something to do with my concrete life.
Do you have any psychic, non-ordinary or other special gifts after your experience that you did not have before the experience? No
Are there one or several parts of your experience that are especially meaningful or significant to you? The feeling of a supernatural presence and the emotions that it caused, especially that life is continuing after death, as well as the light and what it represents. If 'God' exists, those who came to the end of the tunnel met him (and understood that religious morals are a human invention, to differentiate from the sacred).
Have you ever shared this experience with others? Yes One week. They interpreted it as my way to react about the attacks.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes When I was young I had heard about it via TV shows, later I made inquiries on the internet, I have been reading accounts, and looked to know how doctors explain NDEs. All this gave me a rather complete idea what this is about, but I really didn't expect to experience it myself.
What did you believe about the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened: Experience was probably real At the moment, I experienced it as something completely real, the immersion was total. Shortly after the experience I wanted to go back.
What do you believe about the reality of your experience at the current time: Experience was probably real I would like it to be real, but I don't exclude the possibility that it might be an illusory product of my brain. At the moment, I experienced it as something completely real, the immersion was total. If it is not real, this doesn't change anything, I think. The experience in itself is a good one.
Have your relationships changed specifically as a result of your experience? No
Have your religious beliefs/spiritual practices changed specifically as a result of your experience? No
At any time in your life, has anything ever reproduced any part of the experience? No
Is there anything else that you would like to add about your experience? I don't understand why this happened to me. People telling about a near-death experience, come close to death or at least are afflicted with an injury needing medical care. I was perfectly well. Something significant happened to me without any reason, I wonder why.
Did the questions asked and information that you provided accurately and comprehensively describe your experience? Yes I have the feeling that this questionnaire is the fruit of a complete work and is strongly based on testimonies like mine. So it is quite natural that I am finding questions, that are giving a echo to my experience, which is probably quite similar to those of many others.
What could a national organization with an interest in near death experience
(NDE) do that would be of interest to you?
about NDE experiences seems quite good, but I don't have the impression that
anybody knows why nor how this phenomenon is happening precisely. I would like
to know what is happening in the brain of a person during the NDE. This might be
because I am very interested in Neuropsychology. But if you try to refer to a
valid scientific model, experiencing NDE must be, one way or another, a
production of the brain, even if it is tempting to imagine that the soul leaves
the body and is flying towards other heavens.
Are there any other questions that we could ask to help you communicate your experience? You could improve the French translation of the questionnaire.