NDERF INTERVIEW (Click here if you want to go directly to the interview) - Interview with Anita M
I had cancer (Hodgkin's Lymphoma), and on this morning, I could not move. My husband rushed me to hospital, where, after doing scans, they diagnosed me with grade 4B lymphoma (the highest grade). The senior oncologist looked at my report and told my husband that it was too late, and that my organs were now shutting down. I only had 36 hours to live. However, the oncologist said he would do whatever he could but prepared my husband that I would most likely not make it, as my organs were no longer functioning. They started me on a chemotherapy drip as well as oxygen, and then they started to take tests, particularly on my organ functions, so that they could determine what drugs to use.
I was drifting in and out of consciousness during this time, and I could feel my spirit actually leaving my body. I saw and heard the conversations between my husband and the doctors taking place outside my room, about 40 feet away down a hallway. I was later able to verify this conversation to my shocked husband. Then I actually "crossed over" to another dimension, where I was engulfed in a total feeling of love. I also experienced extreme clarity of why I had the cancer, why I had come into this life in the first place, what role everyone in my family played in my life in the grand scheme of things, and generally how life works. The clarity and understanding I obtained in this state is almost indescribable. Words seem to limit the experience – I was at a place where I understood how much more there is than what we are able to conceive in our 3-dimensional world. I realized what a gift life was, and that I was surrounded by loving spiritual beings, who were always around me even when I did not know it.
The amount of love I felt was overwhelming, and from this perspective, I knew how powerful I am, and saw the amazing possibilities we as humans are capable of achieving during a physical life. I found out that my purpose now would be to live “heaven on earth” using this new understanding, and also to share this knowledge with other people. However I had the choice of whether to come back into life, or go towards death. I was made to understand that it was not my time, but I always had the choice, and if I chose death, I would not be experiencing a lot of the gifts that the rest of my life still held in store. One of the things I wanted to know was that if I chose life, would I have to come back to this sick body, because my body was very, very sick and the organs had stopped functioning. I was then made to understand that if I chose life, my body would heal very quickly. I would see a difference in not months or weeks, but days!
I was shown how illnesses start on an energetic level before they become physical. If I chose to go into life, the cancer would be gone from my energy, and my physical body would catch up very quickly. I then understood that when people have medical treatments for illnesses, it rids the illness only from their body but not from their energy so the illness returns. I realized if I went back, it would be with a very healthy energy. Then the physical body would catch up to the energetic conditions very quickly and permanently. I was given the understanding that this applies to anything, not only illnesses – physical conditions, psychological conditions, etc. I was "shown" that everything going on in our lives was dependant on this energy around us, created by us. Nothing was solid - we created our surroundings, our conditions, etc. depending where this "energy" was at. The clarity I received around how we get what we do was phenomenal! It’s all about where we are energetically. I was made to feel that I was going to see "proof" of this first hand if I returned back to my body.
I know I was drifting in and out between the two worlds, but every time I drifted into the "other side", I was shown more and more scenes. There was one which showed how my life had touched all the people in it - it was sort of like a tapestry and showed how I affected everyone's lives around me. There was another which showed my brother on a plane, having heard the news I was dying, coming to see me (this was verified to me as when I started to come round, my brother was there, having just got off a plane). I then saw a glimpse of my brother and me and somehow seemed to understand it was a previous life, where I was much older than him and was like a mother to him (in this life, he is older than me). I saw in that life I was very protective towards him. I suddenly became aware he was on the plane to come and see me, and felt "I can't do this to him - can't let him come and see me dead". Then I also saw how my husband's purpose was linked to mine, and how we had decided to come and experience this life together. If I went, he would probably follow soon after.
I was made to understand that, as tests had been taken for my organ functions (and the results were not out yet), that if I chose life, the results would show that my organs were functioning normally. If I chose death, the results would show organ failure as the cause of death, due to cancer. I was able to change the outcome of the tests by my choice!
I made my choice, and as I started to wake up (in a very confused state, as I could not at that time tell which side of the veil I was on), the doctors came rushing into the room with big smiles on their faces saying to my family “Good news – we got the results and her organs are functioning – we can’t believe it!! Her body really did seem like it had shut down!”
After that, I began to recover rapidly. The doctors had been waiting for me to become stable before doing a lymph node biopsy to track the type of cancer cells, and they could not even find a lymph node big enough to suggest cancer (upon entering the hospital my body was filled with swollen lymph nodes). They did a bone marrow biopsy, again to find the cancer activity so they could adjust the chemotherapy according to the disease, and there wasn’t any in the bone marrow. The doctors were very confused, but put it down to me suddenly responding to the chemo. Because they themselves were unable to understand what was going on, they made me undergo test after test, all of which I passed with flying colors, and clearing every test empowered me even more! I had a full body scan, and because they could not find anything, they made the radiologist repeat it again!!!!
Because of my experience, I am now sharing with everyone I know that miracles are possible in your life every day. After what I have seen, I realize that absolutely anything is possible, and that we did not come here to suffer. Life is supposed to be great, and we are very, very loved. The way I look at life has changed dramatically, and I am so glad to have been given a second chance to experience “heaven on earth”.
Was the kind of experience difficult to express in words? Yes The experience was much more than words can express. Putting words to it makes the experience smaller and more limited. What I saw, perceived, and felt, and the clarity I experienced about life, was more than anything we are able to conceive, so words have not been created to describe it.
At the time of this experience, was there an associated life threatening event? Uncertain I was dying of cancer, and the doctors had said I only had about 36 hours to live. It was at this point where I started drifting between another dimension and this one.
At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? Probably at the time when I was given the choice whether to go back.
How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal every day consciousness and alertness? More consciousness and alertness than normal
If your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience was different from your normal every day consciousness and alertness, please explain: I was going in and out of consciousness, so I was aware of both "sides". I was also aware of conversations taking place outside the room, beyond my earshot.
Did your vision differ in any way from your normal, everyday vision (in any aspect, such as clarity, field of vision, colors, brightness, depth perception degree of solidness/transparency of objects, etc.)? Yes I was aware that I was still in the room - even though to others, my eyes were closed and I was not awake, I was still able to "see" everyone in the room, and at the same time experience the other dimension, as if it existed simultaneously.
Did your hearing differ in any way from your normal, everyday hearing (in any aspect, such as clarity, ability to recognize source of sound, pitch, loudness, etc.)?
Yes I was able to hear what was being said by the doctors and my family outside the room, well out of earshot.
Did you experience a separation of your consciousness from your body? Uncertain
What emotions did you feel during the experience? Felt tremendous love, more than anything I have experienced on earth. I felt very loved, like no matter what I did, I would still be loved. I did not have to do anything to deserve it or prove myself.
Did you pass into or through a tunnel or enclosure? No
Did you see a light? No
Did you meet or see any other beings? Yes I was surrounded by many beings, including my father and my best friend who had passed on. I did not recognize the other beings, but I knew they loved me very much and were protecting me. I became aware that they were there all the time, even when I was not aware of it.
Did you experience a review of past events in your life? No
Did you observe or hear anything regarding people or events during your experience that could be verified later? Yes I saw and heard a conversation taking place between my doctor and my husband outside of my room and down a hallway. I saw my brother on a plane coming to see me. Both of these were verified, including the conversation beween my doctor and husband, which I repeated word for word.
Did you see or visit any beautiful or otherwise distinctive locations, levels or dimensions? No
Did you have any sense of altered space or time? Yes I felt I was in the other dimension a lot longer than I really was. The amount I saw and learned would have taken a lot longer in this dimension. Also, with the medical tests that were done, even though the tests were done, the results were dependant on my choice of whether to come back into life or not. That really changed my concept of time!!
Did you have a sense of knowing special knowledge, universal order and/or purpose? Yes The clarity was amazing! I understood why I had the cancer, I understood how people get what they do, and I understood that life is a gift, but we don't realize it. I understood that we are very, very loved, no matter what. We don't have to do anything to prove ourselves to god, and there is no "heaven" or "hell". I realized we create our own heaven or hell here on earth, and I learned the key ingredients for creating my own heaven on earth!
Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure? Yes I reached the point where I felt I had to make the choice whether to go back to life or onward into death. My best friend was there (who had died of cancer 2 years before) and she told me that this was as far as I could go or I would not be able to turn back. "You have come to the edge. This is as far as you can go" she said. "Now go back and live your life fully and fearlessly".
Did you become aware of future events? Yes
I was aware my body would heal very quickly, and it did. I was aware that all the tests would show phenomenal results, and they did. They found no trace of any disease on my scans, my biopsies, etc. My organs are functioning normally, my appetite came back, and I was made aware all of this would happen. It has only been 6 months since my NDE, and I am still awaiting all the other gifts that were shown to me. However, I can see my life changing in a direction where all of this is very possible. One of the things I saw was a very long life ahead of me!
Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience you did not have prior to the experience? Yes I have been much more intuitive since the experience. When I am alone, I often get the awareness of being surrounded by beings (the same beings I felt when I crossed over), and being very, very loved - that same feeling I got during the NDE.
Have you shared this experience with others? Yes Within days after it happened, as soon as I was well enough to talk, I started sharing it with my close family members - my husband, my brother (who I had seen on the plane), my mother. We were all very emotional and in tears. And the were all shocked with my account of events, the test results which I knew would be normal because I chose to come back, the conversations I "heard". Then they saw the speed of my recovery, the shock of the doctors who could no longer find any trace of cancer - it has changed my whole family. I also shared with my best friend who has been by me during this experience, and it has changed her life too. Going out and meeting people after coming out of hospital changed a lot of people, because the last they saw or heard of me, I was on my death bed! I had looked very, very sick, and could not walk or breath properly at that time. Now I looked totally healthy and normal. The first time I walked into a group gathering after coming out of hospital, everyone's jaw dropped. They looked at me as if they had seen a ghost. They could not believe how quickly I had recovered - everyone thought I was going to die! Then I shared my experience with everyone in the room, and all of them believed me because they had seen the "before" and "after". Some of them said I had changed their lives.
Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? Yes I have read about NDEs but never expected to experience one. My NDE felt completely different to anything I have read because there was no light, tunnel, no religious figure, and I did not see my whole life flash before my eyes. While I was experiencing it, I had no idea that I was experiencing an NDE or an out of body experience. It felt very normal at the time. It was only after that I realized I had slipped to another dimension.
How did you view the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened: Experience was definitely real I knew it was real because nothing else could explain the miraculous way my cancer just disappeared from my body!!! (I have the scans and medical tests to prove it)! And the charge I felt from the empowerment and the understanding - nothing else could explain the shift I felt in my way of thinking!
Were there one or several parts of the experience especially meaningful or significant to you? The whole thing was very powerful - I cannot imagine anything more empowering happening to me. However, two main things impacted me - one was being able to change the outcome of the test results. That made me realize that nothing is solid (or real). We can change anything. The second thing, even more impacting, is how my body went from being almost dead from cancer to totally healthy without a trace of illness in such a short time! It not only makes me feel that everything (including cancer) is not real (a shift in consciousness made it disappear!) but it also makes me feel very powerful, and I have a totally different understanding of life now.
How do you currently view the reality of your experience: Experience was definitely real First of all, I am enjoying the wonders of my healthy body. I haven't felt this way in a while! Secondly, I feel very "connected" in a way I never have before. Sort of "guided". I don't feel afraid of anything anymore. I know I won't die until I complete everything I came here to do. And even then, I am not afraid of death. Many, many more "coincidences" have been occurring in my life since the experience (hence the "guided" feeling). Things have been falling into my lap when I have wanted them, the right people call, I have been bumping into the right people, getting e-mails which answer questions I need answered, etc. Life has just become a lot easier, however it has only been a few months since I have been well. I am still feeling very high, and at the moment am still feeling the reality of the whole thing.
Have your relationships changed specifically as a result of your experience? Yes I have become even closer to my family, but my social circle has changed. A lot of my friends have drifted away from me, but a small handful have got closer to me than ever, and I have made a lot of new friends since this experience.
Have your religious beliefs/practices changed specifically as a result of your experience? Uncertain I was never very religious to begin with. I still don't believe in any particular religion, however this has strengthened my belief in spirituality, and my faith in the after life, and the power of our own higher self (soul).
Following the experience, have you had any other events in your life, medications or substances which reproduced any part of the experience? Yes I am able to go back to that "connected" feeling of being loved, and feeling the other beings surrounding me, particularly when I am sitting still in a quiet environment.
Did the questions asked and information you provided so far accurately and comprehensively describe your experience? Yes
In view of how remarkable this account is, I e-mailed some additional questions to Anita. Her response is below the questions.
1. You write remarkably well!!! Have you lived in any English speaking area of the world for any period of time?
2. You had Hodkin’s Lymphoma. Was this diagnosed by biopsy? How was the diagnosis made?
3. How long after the chemotherapy was started did all the lymph nodes you had go completely away?
4. The fact that the medical tests, already done, would have their outcome changed depending on your choice is remarkable. If you had chosen not to return to earth, do you have a sense when the medical tests would have changed- after your choice in earthly time, or would your choice have affected the tests at the time the blood was drawn which, in earthly time, I understand would have been before you made your choice to return to earth. Any further comments you have on this would be greatly appreciated.
5. You said “It not only makes me feel that everything (including cancer)is not real (a shift in consciousness made it disappear!) but it also makes me feel very powerful, and I have a totally different understanding of life now.” As a doctor who treats cancer, any further insights you have on this would be greatly appreciated.
6. Would the doctors who treated you be interested in communicating with me? We would all need your prior approval to share information about your medical diagnosis and treatment. If your doctors were interested in writing up your experience to publish it as a “case report” in the medical literature, I would be delighted to help in any way that I can. This could certainly increase the awareness of NDE in your country.
Thank you so much for your response, and on your compliments to my English! I attended a British private school for my entire schooling here in Hong Kong, as this used to be a British colony up until 1997. There were British schools set up specifically for the children of the British officers and most of the large corporations in Hong Kong were also run by British. After I finished school, I did some further studies in Manchester, UK, but returned to Hong Kong after I finished. I married someone here, who shared a very similar background as myself - a fellow ethnic Indian born and raised in Hong Kong, with no real attachment to our parents' native country. I have also been working here in Hong Kong.
Before I go further, I just want to share with you that your e-mail gave me goose-bumps. When I had my NDE, and I was able to see and perceive certain aspects of my future, I perceived that one of the reasons I had to go back was because I was supposed to touch and inspire people's lives. In that state, I somehow knew that I was meant to inspire thousands, maybe tens of thousands of people. But it was not clear how I was meant to do it - I just knew I was supposed to be doing something to inspire people. I specifically got the feeling that I didn't need to do anything for this to happen, I just had to be myself and enjoy life. Then recently, I had been thinking about this, and now that I am well and want to do something productive with my life, I have been trying to figure out what it is I am supposed to do that inspires others. And this morning I got your e-mail which said "Over the years, tens of thousands of people will read your experience and, I am sure, be inspired." I now understand why I was made to feel I didn't have to do anything!! I was doing it by having the NDE!!!
Regarding your questions I am sorry if the answers seem a bit long, but I want to make it as clear as possible:
About 3 and a half years ago, I had a needle biopsy on a swollen lymph gland at the base of my neck where it meets my shoulder on my left side, and the results indicated I had Hodgkin's Lymphoma. A scan then preliminary staged it at 1A at that time, however more tests still needed to be done. If I can explain some details, which I did not think was necessary in my earlier account as it had nothing to do with the NDE itself: My best friend had just died of cancer - she had a sarcoma in her chest area. The sarcoma had been removed surgically, and then she was given chemo. Her physical condition deteriorated very badly after starting the chemo, and continued to deteriorate until she died. Her family felt very strongly it was the chemo that killed her, not the cancer. I was with her through her experience, and watch her suffer through her chemo experience, which was horrific, and then watched her die. This was my friend whom I had known since grade school, and we had grown up together. When I was then subsequently diagnosed the same year she died, I was shocked, as were a lot of people in our circle of friends. I was very, very afraid of chemo, so refused treatment, and went to see a naturopath who specialized in cancer treatment. At first, the swollen lymph nodes seemed to be shrinking, and we felt the therapy was working, and I was very happy that I would not have to have chemo. But although they got smaller, they did not disappear completely. I was living in a lot of fear at that time - fear of the cancer, and fear of chemo. I cleaned up my diet, did colon therapy, and took all the pills the naturopathic doctor gave me. But around 2 years ago, the lymph nodes seemed to be growing again, and so the doctor changed my therapy, and also sent me to a herbal specialist. Again, it seemed to come under control for a little while, but around 1 year ago, I started to develop fluid in my chest area, and also my left arm became swollen. My doctor then performed a pleural effusion, and then the fluid came back and he performed the effusion several more times. During this time, my glands were getting more and more swollen, until January, 2006, when my health deteriorated dramatically in a span of 2 or 3 weeks. My breathing became more and more laboured, I was always out of breath, and I needed to carry a portable oxygen machine. I was losing weight, I could not eat, as I felt full all the time, my muscles were deteriorating to the point where I could not walk and was using a wheelchair, I had skin lesions which were oozing, and by February 2, I could not move. I could not open my eyes, get out of bed, let alone even walk. I just accepted that this was it, I was going to die, and I just completely let go. I did not feel any pain, or discomfort. I was not on any medication at that point - just a state of total release.
My husband rushed me to hospital, and I was assigned an oncologist who, after examining me, said "its too late. There is nothing I can do." My husband pleaded with her, and she then relented to assign someone else, as she felt it would be a "waste of her time", or perhaps she did not want my death on her record. She was very annoyed with my naturopathic doctor, and felt it was his responsibility to send me to the hospital earlier, and made it clear that it was "his fault" that I was going to die.
The scans showed that the lymphoma had spread throughout my body, and my organs were compromised. My feet and hands now began to swell like balloons, and my face was all swollen. The oncologist said "her organs have already shut down - she is dying of organ failure". Listening to my husband's pleas, she called another oncologist, who said to my husband "I can't promise anything, I'll see what I can do. However, the next 24 hours are critical. She is too unstable to even perform a biopsy to determine what drugs to inject. We will also begin to run the tests right away on her organ functions as all symptoms seem to indicate failure." This was the conversation that took place outside my room, some 40 feet away, and I heard and saw it, so I had obviously left my body at that time. Anyway, I then became aware of all the needles poking me, and some kind of chemo drugs went into me, but I don't know exactly what the mix was. And I was connected to an oxygen machine, a food tube, something that monitored my heart, pulse, blood pressure, etc. etc. The next morning, (after drifting between the two worlds through the night and after making my decision to come back into life) I started to feel more awake, and started to feel slightly more grounded in this world than that one, and that was when the doctors came in and said my organs were showing normal function. I was still a bit fuzzy, and said something like "oh, I thought we knew that already". My brother had arrived, having been on a plane overnight, and by that evening, I was really awake and ready to sit up. My whole family started celebrating. Within 4 days, my progress was remarkable, and I was transferred from the ICU to a normal private room. There was significant reduction in my lymph nodes within those 4 days.
Because it now looked like I was going to make it, the doctor called for a wound specialist to look at my skin lesions. When he first looked at them, he said that surgery would be needed as the skin had been "eaten away", but he would wait until I became stronger. However, my wounds healed miraculously over the weeks, and never needed surgery (one on the neck and one under the arm). About a week after coming out of ICU, they performed a bone marrow biopsy, and could not find anything, and about 10 days after that, they performed a lymph node biopsy. When I was sent for the lymph node biopsy, the radiologist could not find a lymph node big enough to even suggest cancer, however the oncologist pushed him to mark a lymph node on my body anyway which they biopsied and found nothing. Each time, I knew the test results were going to be negative. The oncologist however, wanted to run these tests so that he could determine what chemo drugs to use, but since he could not find anything, he said it is because I am responding extremely well to what he is currently using, so he will keep giving me that. I said that if the cancer seems gone, why do I have to keep having the chemo, but he insisted that, even though my recovery was remarkable, he had to be sure to give me at least the minimum number of cycles, because of the state I was in when I came in. He said he originally thought I would need a lot more cycles, but was now reducing it drastically to the minimum he ever gives which is six. I don't know why, but I did not suffer major side effects from the chemo. I was so charged by my NDE, it was as if nothing was going to get me down, and I now lost my fear of the chemo, and knew that I was going to be fine - better than fine.
In answer to question 3, the lymph nodes were visibly reduced by about 80% around 4 days after the chemo. However, the biopsy was done about 2 weeks after that, where they could not find a lymph node to even suggest cancer. They were waiting for my body to be stronger before conducting the biopsy, which is why it was not done earlier. The bone marrow biopsy was done earlier, where they did not find anything.
Question 4: This is one of the points that is so hard to express with our limited 3 dimensional language. Time seems to have a completely different meaning on that side. What I felt was that all possibilities exist simultaneously - it just depends which one you choose. Sort of like being in an elevator, where all the floors of a building exist, but you can choose which floor to get off on. So if all the future possibilities exist for me to choose from, then I assume all the past scenarios exist too. So depending which future possibility I choose, that will also determine which past automatically comes with it (I chose life, so it affected the past, choosing the appropriate test result for the organ function). I hope I am making sense. It's very clear in my thoughts, but it is hard to write. When I was being presented the choice, I actually saw a vision of my lab report which said, on the heading: Diagnosis: Organ Failure. Then on the body of the report: Death due to organ failure caused by Hodgkin's lymphoma. When I actually saw the report after coming back, the sheet of paper looked almost identical, and the heading matched word for word: Diagnosis: Organ Failure, however, the body read: There is no evidence of organ failure. I actually got goosebumps looking at that report, knowing what it could have read.
Question 5: I now know that a lot more exists than we are consciously aware of or capable of understanding. Each day, I am understanding more and more since the NDE. I am finding out that there are things I now feel I "know" or "understand", which I never did before. The best example I can think of is: imagine there is a huge warehouse, which is dark, and you live in this warehouse with one flashlight. Everything you know about this warehouse is seen through the light of this one small flashlight. Whenever you want to look for something, you may or may not find it, but it does not mean the thing does not exist. It is there, but you just haven't flashed your light on it. You can only see what your light is focused on. Then one day, someone flicks on a lightswitch, and for the first time, you can see the whole warehouse. The vastness of it is almost overwhelming, you can't see all the way to the end, and you know there is more than what you can see. But you do see how all the products are lined up on all the shelves, and you notice just how many different things there are in the warehouse which you never noticed, never even conceived having existed, yet they do, simultaneously with the things you know existed (those are the things your flashlight had been able to find). Then, even when the light switch goes back off, nothing can take away the understanding and clarity of your experience. Even though you are back to one flashlight, you now know how to look for things. You know what is possible, and you even know what to look for. You start viewing things differently, and it is from this new springboard that your experiences start to happen. And so I find that in my daily life, I am referring referring to different aspects of my experience at different times, and I am understanding things in a different way, and knowing things I did not know I knew.
I saw all people as "energy", and depending where our energy level was, that was the world we created for ourselves. The understanding I gained from this was that if cancer was not in our "energy", then it was not in our reality. If feeling good about ourselves was in our energy, then our reality would be positive. If cancer was in our energy, then even if we eradicated it with modern medicine, it would soon come back. But if we cleared it from our energy, the physical body would soon follow. None of us are as "real" or physical as we think we are. From what I saw, it looked like we are energy first, and physical is only a result of expressing our energy. And we can change our physical reality if we change our energy. (Some people have mentioned I use the term "Vibration"). For me, personally, I was made to feel that in order to keep my energy/vibration level up, I only had to live in the moment, enjoy every moment of life, and use each moment to elevate the next moment (which then elevates my future). It is in that moment of elevating your energy level that you can change your future (like my test results). It sounds very simplistic, but it felt very deep when I was experiencing the understanding of it.
Question 6: As yet, I have not told my doctors of my NDE, because they seem a little old fashioned, and I don't know how they will respond. However, I am willing to give it a try. I am seeing them on Thursday morning for a general check up, and I will broach the subject. It had occurred to me earlier to mention it to them, but the time never felt right. They had commented however, all through my stay in hospital, at how remarkable my recovery was. I will keep you informed as to how it goes with them, and as long as they agree, I have no problems with you communicating with them.
I hope I have been able to answer your questions. I am very excited about being posted on your site, especially at the thought of being on the archives of the exceptional experiences. My brother forwarded me the link to your site about 10 days ago, as he started to read up on NDEs after my experience, and I started to fill out the questionnaire immediately.
Anita M. was born in Singapore and then lived in Sri Lanka until she was 2 years old. An ethnic Sindhi woman from India, her family then moved to Hong Kong where she grew up speaking fluent Sindhi, Cantonese and English, as well as being conversant with a multitude of cultural idioms. Although a Hindu by birth, she was educated first in Catholic schools and then in private English schools in Hong Kong and later studied in England before returning to Hong Kong to take a senior management position for a French fashion company where she traveled all over the world using her multi-cultural, multilingual background in a variety of business and social settings. In December 1995, she married her husband and soulmate, Danny, who loves her unconditionally (and still does, despite her becoming a NDE freak now).
In April 2002 she was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma and after nearly 4 years of battling the disease, she was taken to the intensive care unit of her local hospital in February 2006 where she was given less than 36 hours to live. Her remarkable NDE and seeming miraculous recovery from cancer has created enormous interest and commentary on an international scale.
NDERF: Hi Anita. It's nice to talk to you again. It's only been a few months since your NDE and recovery, so I was wondering how you are feeling these days? Has media and public interest in your experience had any effect on your ability to come and go as you please?
Physically, I'm feeling really great, thanks for asking. I don’t recall having this much energy at my disposal ever before. As for the media and public interest, that’s been a lot of fun. It’s not that people recognize me straight off the bat, you know. I mean, a lot of people have heard my story, but most don’t know what I look like, because they’ve mostly either read about me on the internet, or heard about me on the radio. (I’m becoming a regular on Chinese radio!!)
It’s only when I introduce myself that people say “ohhhhh, so you’re the Anita that died!!”
Another fun aspect is that I am getting a lot of invitations to attend social as well as spiritual gatherings. What I love most is that people keep hugging me. When they meet me, they say “I was really moved by your experience. Can I have a hug?” And of course, I say “sure!” I just love that part!!
NDERF: Yes, and I can see you are becoming expert at giving cyberhugs on the forum. Now you can hug worldwide! What has been the most difficult part adjusting to 3 dimensional reality since returning from your experience?
That’s a good question. The most difficult part is not being able now to see this world in the same way as everyone else does. I don’t see things the same way as most people, nor can I process information in the same way I used to. I can’t. It feels like I have seen beyond this physical world, and I can’t go back to thinking the way I used to. Sometimes I feel misunderstood. One of my fears is of becoming lonely, should no one understand me.
NDERF: Yes, I can imagine there would be a sense of loneliness that could come with an experience that is difficult to put into language. Can you tell me more about how this way of thinking affects your physical reality?
When I was in the NDE state, it felt like I had woken up to a different reality. It felt like I had awoken from the “illusion” of life, and from that perspective, it looked like my physical life was just a culmination of my thoughts and beliefs up to that point. It felt like the whole world was just a culmination of the thoughts and beliefs of the collective. That is, the culmination of everyone’s thoughts and beliefs. It felt like nothing was actually real, but we made it real with our beliefs. I understood that even my cancer was not real, it was also part of the illusion, so if I went back to my body, I would not have the cancer any more.
And another thing is that there was this incredible understanding of how we are all interconnected. And how what I felt within me affects my whole universe. I felt one with everything. I felt a connection with every living thing. And it felt like the whole universe is within me. As far as I am concerned, if I am happy, the universe is happy. If I love myself, everyone else will love me. If I am at peace, the whole universe is peaceful. And so on.
Also, time and space feel very different in that dimension. It doesn’t feel linear, like it does here. It felt like everything was happening simultaneously. I saw what could be interpreted as past lives, I saw what was happening currently (my brother on the plane, and conversations between my family members and doctors), and I also saw the future of this life pan out. But it was as if they were all happening at once, and I was living them all at once. It felt like, only after coming back, my mind has to process it as happening in linear time, but in that dimension, it didn’t feel that way at all. And also, distance and solid walls did not stop me from seeing and hearing everything that pertained to me at that time.
So now, back into 3D life, it feels like even solid walls, distance, and time are constraints that can be overcome, just by a change of “state”.
NDERF: Wow, I can only imagine an experience like that would mess with your mind!! So can you tell me more about how the NDE has affected the way you think and process information now?
Well, first of all, my view of the world has totally blown apart. Over these months, I have had doctors telling me, over and over, that what happened to me is completely unexplainable. Medically, it should not be possible. They can't figure out where the billions of cancer cells went in just a matter of days. Medically, every way they look at it, I should have died. My organs were shut down. Either the cancer should have killed me, the drugs should have killed me, or the billions of cancer cells trying to leave, flooding my already shut down organs should have killed me.
In view of what physically happened to me, I am no longer able to see any physical disability in the same light anymore! Where, in my own mind, would I draw the line between what is "fixable" or "curable" and what is not? By what scale or logic would I draw these conclusions from? Certainly not from what is "medically" possible! I can't apply that to my life anymore. The word "impossible" has no meaning to me anymore. The boundaries of what is possible or not is very shady to me.
I look at everything in our reality, including things like illness and aging, so differently. I challenge anything that is considered “natural” or “normal”. To me now, everything feels like human construct – that is, just another product of personal and mass belief.
Having had the experience I have, it feels like nothing is real, but every single possibility exists.
I now live my life knowing that I can create my own reality based on these new truths that I have learned.
NDERF: That’s a really powerful way to live. I want to go into what you say about creating your own reality, but before I do, just while on the topic of the physical body, it sounds as if you no longer see the challenges of illness in the same way – in fact, it almost sounds like you feel “invincible”. Can you elaborate more on that?
OK, before my experience, one of my biggest fears in life was cancer, another fear was chemo (I watched 2 people die while on chemo), and also I had a myriad of other fears. It was almost as if my life was being "caged" in by my fears. My experience of life was getting smaller and smaller.
Now move forward to my NDE. This state caused a huge internal consciousness shift within me. It felt as if I had penetrated into a reality beyond my “mind” and that, living in the mind was living in the “illusion”. Words aren’t adequate to describe the state, but it felt like we constructed this world with our mind, and that was the illusion. It felt like I went beyond that. And there was a feeling of being connected to the entire universe- becoming one with everyone and everything. I was also flooded in an all encompassing, unconditionally loving, energy. It was an energy of unconditional love - an energy that does not discriminate or judge. This universal energy is there for us no matter who or what we are. I felt amazingly powerful and magnificent. It was in this very awake state that I made the decision to come back into life. It was one powerful decision to come back and experience LIFE in this body again. You see, as soon as the choice to live or die was presented to me, I KNEW that once I made the decision, NOTHING outside of myself could kill me. NOTHING. Just the fact that I was presented with the choice and that I had made the decision, made it real. And as soon as I made the decision, every single cell in my body responded to that decision, and I healed almost immediately.
The doctors continued to take tests, but could not find anything. I understood that everything that was being done after that - all the tests, biopsies, drugs, etc. etc. was being done to satisfy everyone around me, and although a lot of it was very, very painful, I KNEW that I would be fine. My higher self/soul/spirit/connection to all that is, whatever you want to call it, that part of me had decided to continue to live through this body, and nothing in this physical 3D world could affect that decision. It felt like any decision made from the real reality far outweighs anything in this mind constructed "illusion” of the 3D world.
This is that invincible feeling. The feeling that nothing outside of me can harm me.
NDERF: Do you think this feeling can be attained by others, or do you feel that it is something that can only be achieved either by an NDE or by a special few?
I strongly believe it is something that can be attained by others. I certainly don’t feel special, or chosen or anything like that, in any way. Perhaps one just needs to be at the right “place” psychologically in their physical lives for something like this to happen.
It can certainly look like this is just a random event that happened to me. But bear in mind that I had cancer for nearly 4 years. During those four years, I changed dramatically. Living with terminal cancer at a reasonably young age and watching yourself deteriorate changes you and your perspective on life. It can’t not. I feel that those years “prepped” me for exactly the type of death experience that I had. I don’t know if I would have been emotionally mature enough to handle such a shift if it happened sooner, like say, without all the emotional and psychological “clearing” that took place within me from living with the cancer for almost 4 years. I feel that I had reached a place in my life that “allowed” this shift to happen. I was already at a point in my life where I wasn’t particularly attached to any way of thinking, and had also reached the stage of letting go of desiring any specific outcome. In my opinion, getting to this point was important for me.
The NDE gave me that last “push” that I needed, to see beyond this reality. And once I saw that the body is not the real me, and that the cancer was also not “real”, I was then able to see how loved I am, and I recognized my own magnificence, and once I made the decision to live, the physical body only reflected this “new found” state.
I made the decision to come back when I realized that “heaven” is not a place, but a state.
I’m sure there are people who are at exactly the right place internally, for such a shift to take place. And they don’t have to have an NDE for this to happen. Perhaps all they need to do is to bring into their awareness of what is possible. And perhaps, just by the fact that something like this has happened to me, I can be the catalyst for such an awareness to be brought into their reality.
I believe that once people are willing to expand their minds to let in such occurrences into their own reality, it may even trigger off further inner work to allow for such a shift to happen within them. I don't believe everyone has to have something as drastic as an NDE to see such miracles occur. Perhaps just a willingness to let go of beliefs which may be holding them back.
From that state, where this life looked like an “illusion” created by collective minds and beliefs, it looked like our strong attachment to certain beliefs is what holds the illusion in place. Perhaps a willingness to look at and let go of beliefs that may be holding us back could help us to move forward faster, as a collective consciousness (perhaps a better term would be “collective unconsciousness” – because we humans do this without awareness).
NDERF: This now takes me back to a question I differed earlier. How do we create our reality?
From the perspective of the other dimension, it really felt like nothing is real, only our beliefs about them make them so. Now knowing that, I review what I believe, and only hold on to what serves to expand my life, and let go of anything that feels restricting, or doesn’t make me feel positive in any way.
I feel that once you start believing that something is possible, you start to let it into your awareness, and then it starts to become true for you. The more you believe it, the more it starts to become real for you. This is why it is so, very important to believe in positive things, rather than negative things. Whatever you believe, you will find that you are correct. The universe has a way of presenting to you exactly what you believe. If you think life is great, you are correct. If you think life is tough, you will be proved correct too.
My own personal intention is to bring to people’s awareness what our human body is capable of doing, so that they can let it into their belief system. The more people start to believe it, the more we will start to see this kind of thing happening. In other words, the more we will start to accept it into our collective minds. Then we will start to see it manifest in the physical.
For example, a miracle is only labeled such because it is an event outside of our belief system. Once we see it happen, we can start to believe it. Once we start to believe it, it can then enter into our consciousness and happen more and more often. It’s as simple as that.
NDERF: Yes, if our beliefs create our reality, then it certainly is important to believe in positive things, and things that serve us, rather than things that work against us. But how do we do that in a world that is seemingly so full of negativity?
Remember I said earlier that I felt that the Universe is within me? The external world is only a reflection of my internal world!
A lot of people say that the world is very negative, but that’s not exactly true. Look around you. EVERYTHING exists simultaneously in this universe, the positive as well as negativity. There is poverty, there is wealth, there is sickness, there is health, there is love, and there is hatred and fear, and there is happiness and there is despair, and so on. And there is NOT more negative than positive. It’s just because we choose to see the world in this way, that it feels like there is more negative. And the more we choose to see it this way, and give it our focus and energy, the more of it we draw into our lives, and create it in our own personal reality.
Remember, I believe that this reality is created by our collective unconsciousness. That’s what I felt I broke through, during my NDE. Each of us as individuals ALWAYS has the choice to choose what we want to see and believe as reality.
NDERF: So if someone’s life was not working for them, how would you suggest they turn it around?
One of the most powerful things I got from my NDE is how loved I am. Unconditionally loved. So now, I continue to love myself unconditionally. I would strongly suggest practicing unconditional self love.
Remember, I said that the universe is only a reflection of me. If I am frustrated with the way life is working for me, it is futile to change the external elements without looking at what’s going on internally. A lot of us are very negative towards ourselves. We are our own worst enemies. The first thing I would say is to stop judging yourself and stop beating yourself up for where you are in your life right now. If I am finding that I am constantly frustrated with people, and judging them, it is because that is how I am internally treating myself all the time. I am only expressing outward my own inner dialogue to myself. The more I love myself unconditionally, the easier it is for me to see beauty in this world, and beauty in others.
If I can love myself and not judge myself, and see my own perfection, then I will automatically see all these in others! And the more I love myself, the more love I will have for others. It’s not possible to love another more than you love yourself. Contrary to popular belief that it’s selfish to love yourself, this is just so not true. We cannot give what we do not have.
No matter where you are, it is only the culmination of your thoughts and beliefs up to that point. And you can change it. Remember, I reversed my cancer at the 11th hour. Even when the doctors said it was too late, it was still not too late. So the first thing is to realize that it is NEVER too late to do something, or change anything. It’s important to see the power that the present moment holds in turning our life around.
If you believe in things like “like attracts like” then the absolute best way to attract what’s best for you is to love yourself to the point where you are filled with love, and will only attract to your life everything that confirms this belief about yourself. It’s actually very simple, really.
When you realize your own magnificence, you will only attract magnificence into your life. That’s how I look at it.
NDERF: Can you tell me, how does one become unconditionally loving in a world that is not always loving?
First of all, remember that I feel that the universe is only a reflection of me. So the unconditional love is not extended out to the world (or universe), it is unconditional love that I extend inwardly, towards myself! Each day, I learn to love myself unconditionally.
Also, let me explain that there is a difference between “being loving” and “being love”.
Being loving means giving love to another whether you have any for yourself or not. It means giving what you yourself may or may not even have to give. This type of giving of love can eventually drain you, because we don¹t always have a limitless supply. And then we look to the other to replenish our pool of love, and if it is not forthcoming, we stop being loving ourselves, because we are exhausted.
Being love, on the other hand, means loving myself unconditionally so that it overflows, and anyone and everyone around me just becomes an automatic recipient of my love. The more I love myself, the more it flows out to others. It almost feels like being a vessel for love to flow through. When I am being love, I don¹t need people to behave a certain way in order for them to be a recipient of my love. They are automatically getting my love as a result of me loving myself. So to stop being love, to me, means to stop loving myself. Hence, I will not stop being love on account of another.
NDERF: So how would you suggest someone elevate their own loving energy?
I feel it’s my self-dialogue that either elevates or diminishes the energy I radiate outwards. When my inner dialogue turned against me, over time, it depleted my energy, and caused a downward spiral in my external circumstances. I was always really, really positive on the outside, effervescent, loving, etc. etc. and still my world was crumbling around me, and I was getting depleted, and sicker and sicker.
Sometimes, when we see someone who is really positive and effervescent and kind, yet their lives are crumbling around them we may think "see, this being positive thing doesn't work". But see, here's the thing. WE DON'T KNOW that person's own inner dialogue. We don¹t know what they are telling themselves, inside their own heads, day in and day out.
Remember, I am not advocating "thinking positive" in a Pollyanna-ish sort of way. "Thinking positive" can be tiring, and to some people it can mean "suppressing" the negative stuff that happens. And it ends up being more draining.
I am talking about my own mental dialogue to myself. What am I telling myself, day in and day out inside my head. I feel it¹s so very important not to have judgment and fear in my own mental dialogues to myself. When our own inner dialogue is telling us we are safe, unconditionally loved, accepted, we than radiate this energy outwards and change our external world accordingly.
I also think it is very important to see perfection in the moment. The present moment is very powerful. Each moment holds promise, and each moment can be a turning point for the rest of your life.
I am often misunderstood when I say that each moment is perfect. And that everything is perfect. People are afraid of seeing perfection in a situation that is not of their liking, thinking that seeing perfection means not changing it. To me, seeing perfection does not mean keeping the situation static. It means seeing perfection in exactly where you are in your journey right now, no matter where that may be. Seeing perfection in the moment, wherever in the journey that moment might be. That is seeing perfection.
NDERF: This is very powerful - being able to change the exterior in a very positive way, just by changing our internal world with a positive, self-loving, inner dialog. This is a very clear explanation of “The Universe is Just a Reflection of Me”. It also explains why there is so much negativity in the world. It must be a reflection of other people’s negative inner dialogs, being projected outwards. Is that what you feel?
Yes, that is exactly what I feel. You want to know the best part about feeling this positive energy about yourself? I don’t feel I even have to say anything to anyone to uplift them, but just because of my own loving self talk to myself, people around me feel my positive presence. Without even having to say anything, you will start to notice people being attracted to your positive presence, and be energized by your energy. Your positive inner dialogue helps elevate others around you even when you are not saying anything to them, just thinking positive thoughts about yourself!!!! Because energy just radiates and flows out and touches others!! This is why this self loving inner dialogue is so very important in making a better world.
Have you noticed that there are people who just seem to light up a room when they walk in? Or people you just notice, even in a crowd because they are just radiating energy? You can bet that they have a very positive and strong self image and are running some very positive internal self dialogue programs.
What are we internally telling ourselves each and every day? Are we just beating ourselves up, and judging ourselves? Are we too hard on ourselves, and are we our own worst enemy? That’s the real work!! I feel we must start by changing that inner dialogue, by loving ourselves more and more, and then, even without having to say or do anything to anyone, the whole outer world changes to reflect that inner world. I have really noticed my physical world and others around me reflecting this.
NDERF: You’ve mentioned this feeling of oneness before. The connection to everything and the all that is, which you felt while in the NDE state. Can you elaborate a little more on this feeling?
In that NDE state, I felt like I was connected to everything. I was everything, and everything was me. It’s something that is so hard to explain, because the right words just don’t exist. It felt like there is no separation, until we come into physical life and look at the world through the mind. In fact, it felt like the separation IS the mind.
There was SO much clarity in that state, but somehow, it did not feel like the clarity came from the mind. It’s as if something else was doing the understanding, and that something else was able to identify the mind as being separate, and the mind as being the cause for disconnection from the all that is. It felt like the ego and the mind were one. So in that state, which is beyond the mind, there was no ego and no attachment. And all was one. The connection was felt with EVERYTHING. There was no discrimination and no judgment against ANYONE or ANYTHING. It felt as if suffering was caused by our own mind turning against itself. It felt as if, whether we are a criminal or a cancer patient, it all stems from the same thing. It all stems from a sickness of, or separation from the mind. Or from how the mind interprets separation.
If only we knew how perfect and magnificent we are, there would be no hospitals and no prisons. It feels as if imperfection is the creation of the mind. Judgment too. EVERYTHING. As physical human beings, we need to process information through our minds. And all we perceive is separation, because that is how our minds process information. But beyond the mind, we are one, we are totally interconnected. We are actually not our mind. We are something much, much more.
Yet, when in that state, even though I felt one with everything, I still seemed to recognize myself as a separate being from the oneness, as if I had my own evolution. It was like I had this mind, which is not me, but I sort of ... had an obligation to "evolve" it as best as I could, but I was OUTSIDE of my mind looking at it. When we are in the physical, we are INSIDE our mind looking out. And the separation between all becomes more glaring and obvious.
It felt like all the problems and the issues of the world stemmed from our own, and the collective mind. It felt like the collective mind is what creates the illusion which we live in, with all its collective thoughts and beliefs.
But I believe we always have the choice to see right through this, and create differently. If I choose to do this, those around me are affected accordingly. We can live in this world, but choose not to live in the illusion that has been created by everyone else.
And speaking of “mind,” what are your thoughts on telepathy? Do you see it as mind to mind communication?
It definitely feels like something from beyond the mind, and not mind to mind. To me, it feels like it’s the connection we have with each other like I described above, the connection with the oneness, the all that is.
I feel that we connect with others when we are in touch with that universal connection. Here’s what it feels like for me. Let’s say, for the sake of argument, I am able to telepathically communicate with you. What has happened is that I have cleared my mind, and made it more transparent and become more connected to that universal oneness, and you are doing the same thing. So, you and I are sort of accessing the same pool of "oneness" info. But the reason it feels like mind to mind communication is because here in the physical, we are both communicating and connecting on the mind level. But because we are both accessing the same info at the same time from that oneness pool, and then when we use our mind to communicate with each other, we notice we have both come to the same conclusion, and then we interpret it as our minds have communicated to each other. But actually, we've both tapped into the same "oneness" pool. That’s sort of how it feels to me.
This is why I feel it is important to keep clearing the attachments of the mind, and make it more open to being connected to this oneness. And then the people who are appropriate for us, will connect with us because they will be at the same level of this clarity, and will be accessing this same oneness pool from the same level we are. People who are closed are walking around in a fog, colliding with others who are also in the same fog, and they are fumbling and struggling along with life. Whereas those with the clarity are transparent, and practically walk right through the ones in the fog. And no one can bump into them or derail them, because they are so transparent and light in their energy. That's kind of how it feels like to me.
NDERF: I’d like to go a little deeper into your life, perhaps a little into your past, your beliefs, and how you currently live your life. In your NDE you said you understood everything about why you were who you are. Can you elaborate a little more on that and your specific life situation, like your cultural upbringing and any religious beliefs you may have?
OK. I am multi cultural and multi lingual. My parents are from India, I was born in Singapore, my grand parents lived in Sri Lanka, but I grew up in Hong Kong, and I had a British education. In addition, when I started working, partly because of my linguistic skills, my work entailed my traveling all over the world.
I was born a Hindu, but am not a practicing Hindu. I went to a multi-national school and was surrounded by Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Taoists, and so on, as well as people who weren’t religious at all. Growing up in Hong Kong, religion is not a big factor in our life, because Hong Kong is very multi cultural. Spiritual beliefs just seem to be a philosophy that people weave discretely into their own lives.
I personally have no strong beliefs of any denomination, one way or another.
When I was still studying, I was very confused because I couldn't understand the glaring contradictions between the different religions (because I was exposed to many religions), nor could I understand the glaring contradictions between the religions and the sciences. I couldn't understand how we could be taught one thing in a religious studies class, about the creation of life, and then learn something completely different, about the same topic, in a Science class. I spent a lot of years searching for answers to my confusion, but never found anything satisfactory. Until I had my NDE, that is. Now I don't search anymore. I still don't know all the answers, but I don't feel the need to search anymore. I feel death taught me how to live life.
Anyway, during the NDE state, I understood the importance of my being multicultural, and I understood why I had been exposed to extremes in culture and education (a combination of Eastern and Western). It just all became so, so crystal clear to me. When I was given the choice of whether to come back or not, my initial thought was to continue to go into death, because in that state, there is no attachment to loved ones here. But immediately, it was followed by the understanding, or clarity of "I now understand! So let me go back into life and live with this new understanding!” It really felt like Heaven is a state, and not a place. It was that understanding that brought me back. At that point, I really felt that whichever direction I went, I would be taking “Heaven” with me!
Also, I seemed to have a lot of clarity around why my (absolutely wonderful) husband is who he is, and why we had come together. I understood that there was still a lot we had to do together, and that if I chose death, he would follow shortly after, as it felt like our purpose was very linked. It also sort of felt like I would be missing out on a lot of the gifts that life still held for me, as a result of who I had become up to this point in my life if I did not come back. In a way, it sort of felt like..."The work is done. The stage is set. Now just go and be". Words aren't adequate, but that's sort of it.
NDERF: In your NDE, you mentioned getting a glimpse of a previous life. Do you believe in reincarnation, and do you think it’s because of your Hindu background?
Actually, truth be told, it’s because of my Hindu background that I interpreted it that way – as a past life. But in actuality, it felt like everything else I was experiencing in that state. It was all happening simultaneously. So in actual fact, it felt like a parallel life. I also saw my future, and it all felt just as real. Past, present and future. It all felt like it was happening simultaneously.
There are certain aspects of my experience that even my own mind sometimes has trouble grasping. But hopefully it will come to me sometime in the “future”, as I expand my own thinking to encompass it. It's to do with time and space being completely different in that dimension. So, in answer to your question, I feel we have to change our concept of time, and how we understand time, to really grasp an understanding of it. It certainly didn't feel like “consecutive lives” or “consecutive events” the way we understand it here in the physical.
Even viewing my future – even though I saw my future pan out, it still felt like I had the free will not to attain it. It felt like, what I saw was an outcome of how I could expect my life to unfold, should I continue to “remember my magnificence” as I continued through life. This is harder to explain, but it felt like there were endless possibilities, but I could always attain what was the absolute best possibility for me by choosing to always “remember my magnificence”.
NDERF: Can you elaborate a little more on how you now live your life, while being able to see “beyond the illusion?”
One of the problems I have is that language is just so limited and inadequate in trying to explain what I am saying. It’s so easy to misunderstand and misinterpret the true feelings being conveyed.
First of all, to me, suffering is an illusion. And I wish there was a better word to use, because when I had cancer, and people would tell me it’s only an illusion, I would get even more frustrated. The feeling that comes is: “if it’s only an illusion, then why does it feel so real to ME???” and “So, how do I break thru the illusion??” So sometimes I hesitate to use the word illusion when others are suffering. It can cause more frustration. But right now, it is the only word I can think of to explain what it is I am trying to say.
When I was sick, I had thought that maybe the “illusion” is what we find out this realm is only after death. That is, something that can only be viewed from the other realm, and while in this realm, we are “bound” to the illusion. I thought that as long as we are in this realm, it always remains “reality” to us. I never would have believed it possible to be able to see thru the “illusion” and still be able to come back and express life in the physical. But in order to do that, and come back and live life in the physical again, I had to be prepared to view life completely differently from others. Perhaps for some people, the thought of doing that is harder. It’s easier not to come back, than to live in a world of people who don’t view life this way. Because the way the world is right now, it's just not conducive to us living or seeing life in this way.
The way I view life now, nothing exists in this world until we bring it into our consciousness/awareness. Nothing exists until we express it, either as an individual or as a collective. The more awareness we draw to something, the more real it becomes in the physical. As a collective, we are probably inadvertently creating our physical reality by default, unknowingly. But as individuals, we always have the choice to create differently than what is being created “out there”.
The problems we have right now, including a lot of the suffering we feel, is because we are not aware of this. I don’t have any universal answers as to why we are not made aware of this from birth. But it’s also quite likely that if everyone was made aware of this all at once, there would be chaos, because the world is not geared up to deal with everyone “waking up from the illusion”. In my view, the way we look at physical reality as a collective, has been “back to front” right from the start.
If I still saw the world through 3D eyes, putting physical before consciousness, then I would have to take the doctors’ words at face value when they said that it is medically not possible for billions of cancer cells to pass through the host body in such a short time without killing it. And it is also medically not possible for billions of cancer cells to just “disappear” just like that, without passing through the host body. And if I had to wait for the scientists to have proof FIRST, before I discovered that my consciousness overrides ANYTHING physical, then I would still have cancer!
NDERF: Which leads me to the question of your purpose. So would you say that your purpose now is to just be here, in the physical, and express yourself in the physical, or is there something more?
To me, the purpose is BEING. And that is different from being HERE. The focus is different. When the focus is on being here, we can get lost here. The physical world is full of "other people's version" of life. Whereas when the purpose is BEING, it means being YOU, and only subscribing to YOUR version of life (or creating your version of life). To me, it means being an expression of exactly who I am.
My purpose is to be as much me as I can be!
Before my experience, I used to pursue my purpose externally. But after my NDE, I discovered there was nothing outside of myself. And there was nothing to pursue. I just had to be, and the external would fall in to place
NDERF: Can you elaborate a little more on the difference between pursuing your purpose externally (which is what you used to do), and just “being” which is what you do now?
When we “pursue” externally, we seem to see the world as being competitive and limited, and we use external measures to judge our achievements. To me, herein lies the illusion. There is no limited supply of "beingness". We seem to measure our “beingness” by the achievement of goals. I don't, and neither do most people who are happy. My point is to shift your views. See the magnificence in your being whether you are rich, or poor, physically impaired or not, with the one you love, or not, and so on.
I am now just focused on being, and am now the creator of my life – that is, the artist of my life. I no longer sit and think about the external competition. Each of us is unique, with unique traits and talents. I only have to express my own “beingness” and “uniqueness”. A true artist doesn’t really care about whether there is anyone who can create as well as or better than he. He is too busy expressing himself, purely for the purpose of expressing. He has found something within, and is only expressing his inner beauty, and the world shares in it. The more inner beauty you uncover and express, the more the universe shares in it and reflects it back to you.
That’s the difference between “being” and “pursuing”.
NDERF: Do you think what has happened to you could be attainable by anyone?
I don't know for sure, but it sure feels like it can be. I certainly don't feel "chosen" or more special than anyone else on the planet. Do I feel I can "recreate" this state, now that I have experienced it? The answer would have to be yes. I feel like I am living my life from this state now.
In terms of others, the way I see it, each person is unique. And each of us processes information differently. Some of us are more logical, some of us are creative, some of us are more scientific, some of us rely on religion for our answers. My point is that it does not matter. We are all unique. I have a method of processing and expressing which may not be suitable to a lot of people. I am only a product of my own life situation.
However, I strongly feel that by whatever means a person processes their life’s information, it should be one that serves them, and expands them and their views of the changing world (not restricts or limits them and their life experiences).
Whatever or whoever you are, open yourself up to the possibility that perhaps life can be different if you think differently from the way you do now.
In terms of what happened to me, if it can happen to one person, why can't it happen more and more? How can we, as a mass consciousness, allow it? How can we expand ourselves to allow it?
I don't have all the answers for anyone else except me, because I only know how I process information. I am only able to process how I allow these things to happen to me.
But yet, in the state I am now, I can only see perfection in where I am, at not knowing any absolute answers and making it my own personal journey to expand myself, and experience more each day. As I express myself more and more, I feel more connected with the universe.
However, it does feel to me like an attachment to beliefs, and an unwillingness to let go of them and look at things in a new way is what is holding mass consciousness behind. But hey, that's just the way I look at things!
NDERF: Can you expand on what you mean by people’s attachments to beliefs and an unwillingness to let go of them may be holding us back as a mass consciousness.
It feels to me now that our "physical" lives have been built around things seeming to be a certain way. Bear in mind, though, that people depend on things being a certain way. Livelihoods depend on it. Our health, wellbeing and safety depend on it.
People's lives are "built" on certain beliefs and their lives work within the framework of everyone around them believing that these things are true. If everyone around you believes in something, you are inclined to believe it too, and think of it as being true. And your life evolves, as a mass consciousness, based on these seeming "truths". This way of being has been going on for a long time. It has the feel of being solid, with solid foundations. In that 4D state, it felt like, this is how we created this present physical reality - this "illusion". By everybody believing in the same things. That, in itself, makes it true for the mass consciousness.
If we, as a mass consciousness, believed in something completely different, then the world would be a culmination of that collective belief. From that perspective, it really felt like our collective belief created this "illusion" of truth.
I want to add here, though, that perhaps the way the world is structured right now, it's just not ready to know the whole truth. Humankind is not ready for the "illusion" to be shattered. Everything is held in place by everyone believing and thinking a certain way.
So if someone came along who is able to see beyond this "illusion", it is much easier for those still living within the illusion to "shoot" the messenger than to alter this "illusion". It would cause too much uncertainty and chaos. It can't be done overnight. Human collective unconsciousness is not able to come to terms with it. EVERYTHING would have to be looked at differently if people saw through the illusion overnight, and it would cause CHAOS, not peace and love (which those who see beyond the illusion are trying to bring in). Our medical systems, our judicial systems, our education systems, our religious systems would have to be COMPLETELY overhauled and re-evaluated. And it can't be done overnight.
However, those who see through the illusion, see this. And those who see this, become focused in creating a reality for themselves based on their own truths, rather than what has been created by the collective unconsciousness.
The universe is changing at the pace that it is capable of changing, that's why those who see beyond the illusion are able to see the perfection in things being "just so". The so called "strife" that goes on, the wars, the disparity between rich and poor, the contradictions in religion and sciences, this could be just a natural occurrence of a consciousness that is waking up and starting to see through this man made illusion of collective unconsciousness.
Everything is happening at a pace which is perfect for our fragile collective to handle. The way our world is right now, it is not geared up to deal with the REAL TRUTH. The collective does not yet seem fully ready to handle it. Maybe it never will be. Maybe while we are here, we are meant to deal with things at this level. However, to me, it certainly feels like this ability (to live beyond the illusion) is something that is attainable by the individual, should they choose to do so.
NDERF: If there was a message or lesson from your NDE that you wish everyone could know or understand, something that you wish you could shout out from the rooftops, what would that be?
I would want EVERYONE to know that every part of you is magnificent. Your ego. Your mind. Your intellect. Your body. Your spirit. Your soul. It’s who you are. A beautiful product of this universe’s creation. Every part of you is perfect. There is nothing to let go. Nothing to forgive. Nothing to attain. You already are everything you need to be. We make it so complicated. But it’s not.
If a religion makes you feel lesser than God, then you have either misinterpreted it, or it’s not doing a good job of teaching you the truth. If a Guru or Teacher or Master makes you feel that you are not “yet” enlightened, and still have more to “learn”, “release” or “let go of” before getting there, then they are not doing a good job of teaching you who you are, or you are misinterpreting them.
Most of our suffering stems from us feeling “less than”. We are not LESS THAN ANYTHING OR ANYONE!! We are complete!
The ONLY THING you need to learn is that you already ARE what you are seeking to attain!!
Just express your uniqueness with abandon!! That’s why you are made the way you are, and that’s why you are here in the physical world!!
NDERF: Thank you so much, Anita, for taking the time to answer these questions and for going more into depth with your story. Given all the interest your NDE is generating internationally, I think the things you have said here are extremely valuable for helping clarify the complexity of your experience. Much love to you and your family as you continue disseminating your NDE for all to hear!