Multiple NDEs.Believe me, it can happen. Especially when you live in a very hostile enviroment. I have literally experienced three of these Near Death episodes.
The first time, I was 16 years old. I had pneumonia. For weeks, I had struggled to shake off what I thought was a cold. Too poor to go to a doctor then. Finally, we were forced to get me taken into the hospital when I was so dizzy from lack of oxygen that I fell and coughed up globs of sputum and blood. I had lost more weight than I could afford. I was hanging onto life by a thread. Every bump we hit in the taxi caused extreme pain in my chest. I was entirely exhausted with the effort of trying to breath and, in turn, survive.
I got to the hospital, and the doctor was shocked at my condition. They immediately took me in for xrays. They stood me up from my wheel chair, with two techs to hold me up, for a wall chest xray. They lifted my arms so I could expand my lungs for the xray. The shock from the pain of lifting my arms, and the pull on my lungs and chest, not to mention the weeks of pain did me in right there. At first, they didn't know that I had died since my chin was resting on the chin rest of the machine.
I don't remember leaving my body. I do remember that I was free of the pain. I was FREE! I could fly. So I did just that. At first, I looked around the hospital at other folks. I could feel the suffering that they had, or did not have. I had an old woman, of whom, reached up and tried to pull me down. I got angry at her and shook her off of me. I could tell that she was desperately grabbing for me. I wanted to be free.
I felt a strong pull. Something was trying to bring me back. I fought like a madman to resist the pull. Literally refused to go back. I later realized that they had shocked my heart to get it beating again. Can't say that I found God, or had a religious experience, because I didn't. I became aware that I was in the midst of a village. I was an Indian warrior. We had just been invaded by the blue coats. I was very angry. Smoke, fire, and screaming. My village, and all that I knew was being destroyed. I had been shot three times. I knew I was to die, so I notched another arrow into my bow. I let it fly into the soldier, of whom, just slaughtered a little girl. Bleeding and dying, I notched another arrow to let loose. I felt a pressure at my chest. It appears as if my heart stopped again and they had to shock me again. I left my hosting body and floated again. Over time, which seemed very short, I visited many places. Watched people, although it appears they didn't know I was there. They were eating, sleeping, fighting, etc. In one case, I was able to confirm that my visit was real. The people, and the location were exactly as I remembered.
Suddenly, I am feeling a heat so intense that I can't figure out what happened. Am I on fire I thought. Then I opened my eyes. I was in a hospital bed burning up with fever. My poor mother sat at my side for over four whole days, as I lied there in a coma. Tubes down my throat to keep me breathing and an IV in both of my arms.
She was as exhausted as I was. Her eyes were dark, skin was as pasty as mine. She looked to old to be my mother.
I admit that I am an atheist to the core. Even with the remaining two experiences, I never had a visit to "heaven" as some would call it. Yes, my mother was a staunch believer in God. However, she allowed us, as her children, to make our own decisions as long as we made every attempt to understand our decision's foundation. Which meant that we had to at least go to a church, or churches of our choice, irregardless of religious beliefs.
In any case, the second time I died was when I was thrown out of a third story window, when I saw a crime, and I was to be murdered so as not to be able to identify them. Let me tell you that it was the most supreme pain I had ever experienced. I lasted about 20 minutes before I blissfully died. A week later, I awoke to my surprise, to find I was still alive.
The third time was when I was in a bad car accident. The force of the crash ripped my neck open to the jugular. I survived because of some quick work by a stranger. He pinched my neck wound closed with his fingers until paramedics arrived. I got to the hospital, the doctors stitched me up and I went into arrest at the ripe old age of 21. They pronounced me dead.
My brother ran into the room and shoved everyone away while he told me to wake the hell up and began doing compressions on my chest. He even called me every name in the book from what I had later heard. The staff kept trying to convince him to stop. He threatened to kill anyone who tried to stop him. They all stood back knowing he would get tired and stop. Amazingly after only a couple of minutes, he got my heart started again. To this day, he refuses to accept his heroic action. His response to it is always that if he has to suffer in this world, then he isn't going to do it alone.
Again, through all of this, I never found God, or had a religious experience. I merely "visited" with people in various places, or lived another life of some type. Throughout the three experiences, I was dead a total of one hour and four minutes. And no, I will not have this information published so I am portrayed as some kind of freak. I only tell you because I know of some others of whom do controlled experiments of which they allow themselves to die to search the "afterlife" and have a team to rescue them before they are gone too long. From my understanding, they too, do not have any religous experiences, but they are definitely different than mine. Can't offer any more than that.
My theory: Maybe when we die, we have portals of which to escape out of life. Some of us may want to be conscious of our afterlife, and some of us may not have a choice in being conscious of it. And if we are not conscious, we gravitate to a place of similar energy?