Almost always, a person who’s had an NDE wonders, “Why me?”
If you’ve had a great NDE, you wonder if you’re special, if you’re supposed to do something remarkable with your life, be famous, be another Mother Teresa. You may have discovered the secret of the universe, and it may be true–and you may wonder if you’re expected to go out and sell tickets so you can talk about it all the time. The safe answer to all of those is, “Probably not.” Just be a kinder, more aware version of who you are. Be the most of who you are.
But if your NDE was frightening, or terrible, or convinced you that you’re going to hell when you die, or left you feeling guilty, you’re probably wondering what’s wrong with you. Does this mean you’re damned? Kicked out of heaven? A wicked, horrible person? Are your sins that terrible–or was that a psychotic episode? Again, the safe answer is, “Probably not.” The bad news is that you’re going to have to work harder than if you’d had a beautiful NDE to figure out the real meaning of the experience in your life.
Here is a most important fact: There is NO evidence that good people get good NDEs and bad people get bad ones. Yes, what is called the “conventional wisdom”–the folklore of just about everybody–tells us that people get what they deserve. But a quick look around tells us that the real world doesn’t work that way. Babies and little children and kindly, helping, delightful people were just as likely to be killed in the recent string of tornadoes as were the drug dealers and child abusers.
What 30 years of study tell us is that nobody knows why people get the NDEs they do. Saints have had terrible experiences, hellish experiences, glimpses of nightmarish scenarios. But they were still saints. People who are generally disapproved of–whoever is on your list of “mustn’ts”–have reported NDEs full of light and love and wisdom.
So what’s the point of being good if it doesn’t make a difference in whether you get punished? And why would you be treated that way if you’re not a bad person? For one thing, because maybe it’s not about punishment. Maybe it’s about learning something you wouldn’t have otherwise. And maybe the point of being “good” is because it’s a happier, more satisfying way to live.
If you choose to, you can believe that a terrible NDE means hell. That’s not the choice I would recommend, because it means you’ll be living in fear your whole life. What I recommend is that you keep coming back here while the site fills up with information and ideas, and hopefully with sharing by other people in your situation who have found ways to get through to a better way of feeling about themselves, the world, and–if you’re religious–probably God. Stay tuned.