My Near Death Experience (NDE)

Words Are Inadequate to Describe My NDE

This is how it came to pass that I experienced one of my most precious, life changing experiences.

In the spring of 1988, I had another bladder infection after a series of them. I had taken antibiotics each time before and this time I was really opposed to taking them again. I felt strongly that something was very wrong with the medical treatments in the past since the infections were still repeatedly happening. This time I decided to ask my body and inner wisdom for what was needed. So I went into my deeply relaxed state; that is my own version of meditation, and I asked for guidance. Amazingly clear, strong, and definite I immediately heard, "The body knows what it needs to do. Drink water."

I was surprised at how suddenly and strongly that message came to me. That convinced me it was valid. I immediately started drinking whole glasses of water as often as I could. I also was making frequent trips to the bathroom and dozing in between trips. The burning pain during urination subsided a little with abundant water, but it did not go away. I did nothing else for three days and nights except drink water, eat a little food, nap and pee. Joan (my wife at the time) kept me supplied with quarts of water and observed my routine with curiosity but support. The pain continued at a tolerable level but did not go away. At least the pain never increased, so I assumed something was working.

I continued the routine of drinking, peeing and napping for the next three days and nights. At approximately 4 a.m. on the fourth day of this routine, I woke up, after a short nap, with a definite awareness that I was going to die! Somehow I just knew it! Strangely, this was not frightening to me but it was just a fact that I accepted in a neutral way. I asked my body again what I needed to do, as I had done nearly every time I woke up from a nap to do my drinking and peeing routine. Again I received the same message strongly and clearly: "Drink water. The body knows what it needs to do."

I continued the same routine through that morning of the fourth day: Wake up from a short nap, ask what to do, drink a full glass of water, pee, and go back and doze. About noon, I added a new step to the routine: I included vomiting after drinking the water. That was not my choice, it just started on its own and seemed to be beneficial. I kept asking the question and getting the same answer: "The body knows what it needs to do. Drink water."

By this time, my mind was getting a little foggy but I remember at some point I had the thought, "I have to throw up my childhood experiences!" And so it seems I did, at least symbolically as I leaned over the toilet and puked.

From about noon until about 4 p.m. I continued my routine and napped on the cool tile bathroom floor. I was feeling very badly, but I felt committed to this routine because the answer to my frequent question was so strong, clear and definite: "The body knows what it needs to do. Drink water."

I still remember very clearly lying on the floor with my face on the cool tile and having a thought of just letting go and surrendering to whatever was happening. I just let go and gave up! With that thought, I instantly shot out of my body like toothpaste squirting out of a tube squeezed hard! "I" left my body from between my eyes and went immediately to the bathroom ceiling and looked down at my gray and bloated body with amazement! Everything was crystal clear. The "me" was outside that body on the floor and "I" had a totally different feeling than when in the body. "I" was very detached from that body on the floor. There are no words that even come close to describing how good "I" felt! Fantastic, glorious, heavenly are words with microscopic meaning compared to how "I" truly felt!

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I Was Not Alone

Interestingly, "I" was not startled to find that "I" was not alone. "I" did not even look around to see who it was that asked me, "Are you ready to die?" The voice was female, and there are no words that can describe how beautiful and loving 'Her' voice was. I knew that whatever my answer would be, it was O.K. with Her. I took a few moments before answering as I looked forward in 'time'. It was a strange mental process that I am unable to do when I am in my body, but somehow "I" was able to look to the future at that moment. It was kind of like looking down a road where I saw enough of my 'future' to make my decision. I answered Her with a simple, "No, I have more to do."

Upon telling Her my decision, I immediately dropped back into my body on the floor like a falling rock. I remember very clearly the feeling of having to adjust and fit back into my body, like putting on a diving suit. I especially remember that all of "me" was in the body except for my left arm and hand, which were in an upward position over my head. For some unknown reason, I had to readjust this last part a little more slowly than the rest of my body. I clearly remember having the awareness of how my arm and hand felt heavy. I said to myself, "This body is really dense!"

Immediately after getting settled back in my body, I again felt the bad body feelings. I was also aware that I had done what was needed and I didn't need to do the water routine any longer. So I moaned loudly to Joan to call 911. I knew that I was in really bad shape and needed immediate help, but I was not afraid. Everything was really fuzzy as some guys arrived and took me away on a stretcher to a hospital in an ambulance with the siren screaming and radios chattering. I didn't care what they did to me because everything was so foggy, and I had a strong feeling of satisfaction and completion of my NDE experience. It seemed like a long time in the emergency room where there were a lot of people dashing around, talking excitedly and doing things to my body. After things quieted down a doctor told me my heart beat was back to normal and I was going to be alright now, but they would put me in the intensive care unit and watch me for a few days.

I didn't remember anything else until I woke up the next morning feeling great. When the doctor made his rounds after breakfast, I convinced him I was back to normal, and I was released by noon! Their conclusion was that I had washed the electrolytes out of my body with all that water. With the reduced and weak electrical activity my various systems had started shutting down. That was the medical explanation, at least.

My experience was very powerful and it definitely changed my view of my body, living, and dying. I now treat my body more like my car -- which I take very good care of with good clean fuel, regularly changing the oil, washing and polishing. Likewise, I feed my body only the best quality organic food, treat it well and get a massage a week. I am 79 years old (in 2012) and my body is running great and so is my car with much credit due to good maintenance for both. I feel like I am just driving both my car and my body on this planet and the "me" is something very separate from everything. The "me" feels very positive and powerful.

Also, I now look at my life purpose very differently. I try to make the most of every day, and I cherish every moment. I trust that if I make all my decisions and operate with truth and love, then I will be on course for fulfilling my purpose in returning to drive this body around a little longer.

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© Copyright 2000, revised 2013 by Lawrence Rodrigues, M.S., Director: EastWest Institute for Self-Understanding.
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