Optional.I was 16 when I had a NDE. It was in the mid 70's. I took a few to many careless risks and ended up having an accident.
After the accident I found myself looking down at my body on the ground from a position maybe five feet above. There was no shock or fear, it was sort of like leaving a house that you had lived in for years. As I starting noticing my surroundings, I discovered that I could perceive so much more than when I relied upon my physical senses. I was at the same location but there was so much more. What stood out most was the way everything vibrated with light.
I was then engulfed in a pure white light while still at the same position. The light was like an aura of a being who was pure peace, love, understanding, and also enlightenment itself. I remember seeing all of the events of my life almost simultaneously. I felt a great shame at many of the things that I had done that were based on selfishness, pride, greed, fear, and etc., but no condemnation from the light. I really can not seem to remember much more of the life review or the being of light, but I know that a lot more occurred. I think that I am either blocking it out because it was painful or that maybe I was not intended to remember it because it would hinder my progress.
The next thing I remember was being with a group of beings like myself with one being who was the guide or was in charge of us all. Our bodies were transparent multicolored light and we appeared to have some sort of white robe like garment. It was also made of light. The only communication that I remember was by direct thought and feeling. As soon as another being would think a thought directed towards me it would just enter my consciousness. We were all sitting in space looking back at the earth in silent meditation. There was still such a great feeling of love and peace that words can not describe, but coming from the Earth was an strong feeling of conflict. You could sense the millions of battles being fought and the lack of peace.
I was then told by the being that was acting as the group guide that I had to return. I did not want to return to the conflicts and leave the peace, but somehow I knew that I had to return. As soon as I had the thought that "yes, I have to return" it all ended.
At the time, I thought that I had to return to perform some great deed, but after almost 25 years I think that I had to return because I have so much more to learn.
It was five days after the accident that I regained consciousness.
The experience has made a tremendous difference to my life.
Below are a few comments Optional made about his NDE. I thought they were very good and should be shared.
I think that everything is based upon our deepest motives or intent. Unfortunately, we often don't realize our own real motives. In addition, sometimes we have to make some hard choices. It can get very complicated if you try to analyze every possible situation.
As with all decisions, it should be based on love, compassion, and selflessness, seeking God or whatever higher being or force you believe in for guidance.
During my NDE I experienced more love, compassion, and understanding than words could describe. I barely remember the life review but what I do remember was such shame at my selfish actions while receiving such understanding and being engulfed by such love. It seems that everything was directed toward my growth.
I also think that when we do these or other harmful acts which are not out of love we will suffer for these actions, but the suffering is not really punishment but rather it is a strong and perhaps painful lesson designed to help us grow spiritually.
What really upset me was the contrast between what love I was shown by the light and the lack of love I had shown in my life. It wasn't a comparison between myself and another person. It was more of a comparison between myself and perfection while experiencing a sort of enlightenment in the presence of a being who seemed to be love and perfection itself. But the light itself did not condemn or accuse. He didn't need too. I received only love from the being in the light. I was the one who was making the judgement so I'm sure that it was far from perfect. Our egos often get in the way.
I agree that we can not live our life in guilt for the wrongs we've done. But we also should not take harming others or our self to lightly, and we should always try to make amends unless it would do more harm than good. Like many things a balance needs to be achieved but, hopefully, the wrongs will decrease in frequency and severity as we grow in wisdom.
In life reviews you see all of your actions, you know your motives, and you see how your actions effected others, and all this while experiencing what I would call an enlightenment, and being surrounded by such a love or compassion that words can not describe. I could see someone calling this a judgement by God even though it is really you who are making the judgement. "You shall be judged as you judge others".
I would not envy the experience, just remember that their was a lot of pain and suffering also. Seek your own spiritual experiences, God is not far from any of us but we all have our own paths to walk.
Before the experience I valued life very little. A year or so before the experience I had been almost to the point of suicide many times from depression and hopelessness. I had turned to being a "tough guy" hippy involved in crimes and activities such as drug dealing, fights, and sex. I had found temporary pleasure but little joy or happiness. For a teenager, I had been through a lot.
The accident and NDE taught me the reality of the non-physical, spiritual world. It also gave me a glimpse of what real spirituality was and how much I have to learn. My whole values started to change from that point and just the memory of the NDE has provided great comfort through some very hard times. There have been many times over the years that I was caught back up in selfish ways but then something always occurs that brings me back spirituality. It's amazing the way tragedy or suffering remind us of what is really important in life.
If there is even the slightest possibility of helping another being then there is meaning in this life. And I would really be very sceptical of anyone who claimed to have learned all they could in this life. It seems to me that the very fact that they made that claim would signify that they did in fact have more to learn because this claim contains a fair amount of egotism. Perhaps this is the cause of the "pointless suffering." Our egos can be a very tricky and hard to over come. Who could honestly say "I can learn no more in life"? Even the great enlightened ones, saints, or prophets who might have been able to make that statement did not state it. They said, "who can I help" instead.
It is possible to find happiness, joy, and hope in this life even though it is impermanent and suffering maybe unavoidable. It can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel while suffering, but suffering always ends eventually. It's more than a little ironic that the suffering often produces changes in us that increase our happiness and often people are thankful for the suffering after its over due to the changes it produced in them.
There is also suffering that seems completely illogical and pointless from our perspective but we must always keep in mind that we really do not know all of the factors involved and that our perspective is limited. We may learn the reason one day. From my NDE experience I got the feeling that everything happens for a reason, but I do sometimes see suffering and have to ask "why".