Out of Body by Choking
Type of Spiritual Experience
John, From County Roscommon had his experience back in 1994. He was aged 18 at the time. He met his Higher Spirit
A description of the experience
I was in a takeaway with some friends. There were four of us altogether. It was during the day. 'We were sitting down, just getting some food and stuff and laughing. I remember there were three other guys sitting at another table - they were workmen. It's all so clear in my mind, so vivid.
Suddenly I got a piece of burger caught in my throat. All my friends were still laughing but I was overwhelmed by fear and horror. I couldn't talk or communicate so I started slapping my back in the hope that they might see I had a problem and know what to do. They thought I was joking and they kept on laughing. My friend later told me that my colour changed. I was going blue from the lack of blood to my brain.
Panic was setting in. My vision was deteriorating. So was my hearing. I clambered over seats and fell onto my knees. Somebody shouted, 'Get an ambulance!' The woman behind the counter started ringing for one. Other people started shouting. The more they shouted the more panicky they sounded. When I heard them being panicky I got more panicky. I said to myself, 'This is unbelievable. I'm going to die here.'
Everything suddenly went black. I was conscious of being in a black void. It was the darkest black I had ever seen in my life. It was like liquid black, the pure absence of everything - of sound, emotion and feeling. I had no fear at all. All my fear had disappeared. I was no longer aware that I had a body. I couldn't feel my legs or arms or anything. I remember saying to myself, 'This is what it must be like to be dead.' It seemed like I was that way for a half an hour but I couldn't have been because I learned later that I was unconscious for nine-and-a-half minutes. In the distance I could see this sort of white thing. I said, 'What's that?' As I concentrated on it, it looked like a little diamond. It was really bright but you could still look at it. It was pure white, unlike anything I had ever seen. It was miles away but it stood out because I was in this black. I was concentrating on it and thinking, 'That's really beautiful.' I was saying, 'Maybe I should try and go towards it.' So I willed myself nearer to it. I wasn't aware of having any legs so the only way I could get to it was by willing myself mentally to approach it. As I got to it I felt a sort of joyous feeling. I thought, 'This feels familiar.'
I suddenly saw little photographs of things in my life. There were photos of my mum and my sisters and different things like that. It was like looking at little snapshots with no movement in them. It might be a face or an experience or a memory. There was one with my sister holding the white cat she had as a kid. There was another of me on a boat with my uncle and my dad. They were crystal clear photographs, one after the other.
I felt I was being prompted to remember my family. I could feel the emotion that was felt at the time when the various things happened. Like, when I saw the photo of my sister with the cat, I could feel the emotion that she was feeling even though I wasn't present at the time. It was very strange. At this stage I had slowed down on my approach to the light. I could look into it. It was like looking into a sun although it wouldn't hurt your eyes. Then I heard a voice. I couldn't make out if it was a man or a woman. It said, ‘you are going to be OK!' Whoever said it put their hands out to stop me from progressing further. It was like a restriction but I couldn't see anybody. The voice sounded familiar even though I hadn't heard it before.
I withdrew back from the diamond of light. I then remember waking up on the floor of the takeaway with everybody standing around me. I was literally shaking like a leaf. The piece of burger had come up on its own out of my throat. It had come out onto the floor. That must have happened when the voice said I was going to be OK. The ambulance people then came and they said I was fine.
Afterwards I had a real feeling that everything was crystal clear and that life was precious. I developed a new-found appreciation for life. I have mellowed a lot. I still have my moments but I have changed. I'm not really a religious person but, after what occurred, I believe there is something. What happened has convinced me 110 per cent that this life isn't all there is to it. There is a purpose to everything. I'd love to know what would have happened if I got to the diamond. People say that if you go there you can't come back.
I definitely think something happened that day and I was on the way out if not dead already. It's constantly on my mind. It's as vivid as if it happened yesterday although it happened a long time ago, in April1994.
The source of the experienceOrdinary person
Concepts, symbols and science items
Activities and commonsteps
From Going Home – Colm Keane