Following a car crash after driving in icy conditions, a man who just gives Ronald as his name believes he encountered the afterlife. The car crash left Ronald on the brink of death, and as a result he believes he caught a glimpse of the afterlife. As he was unconscious, Ronald said he met a bearded man – someone who Ronald believes was God.
Writing on the Near Death Experience Research Foundation (NDERF), Ronald said: “Before I could come to a stop, I found my self standing before this brilliant and awesome light. There was no tunnel.
“I was standing there in a dark spot in front of this light. All I felt was pure Love. I could not move at all and could not hear or speak.
“There were three figures in front of this light. Two of the figures looked like they were talking to each other. The third one saw me and then approached.
“He had this glow around him. He had a beard and moustache. He was talking to me, but I couldn’t hear him.
“All of a sudden a figure appeared within the light. All I could make out was a shadow because of how bright the light was. He lifted up his right hand and the only words I heard was, ‘Now is not your time.’
“And puff, I was back in my body and my car in a ditch. I jumped out of the car, Praised the Lord, and prayed to get out of the ditch and make it home. The Lord helped me.
“The one thing I got out of this is that it’s not just faith any more. It’s fact that GOD does exist. The pure Love I felt in the experience is real and I can’t wait to get that back.”
Some researchers, however, have said these visions are a normal phenomenon and not necessarily a sign of an afterlife.
Dr Sam Parnia, director of critical care and resuscitation research at NYU Langone School of Medicine in New York City, told an Oz Talk: “People describe a sensation of a bright, warm, welcoming light that draws people towards it.
“They describe a sensation of experiencing their deceased relatives, almost as if they have come to welcome them.
“They often say that they didn’t want to come back in many cases, it is so comfortable and it is like a magnet that draws them that they don’t want to come back.
“A lot of people describe a sensation of separating from themselves and watching doctors and nurses working on them.”
Dr Parnia said there are scientific explanations for the reaction, and says seeing people is not evidence of the afterlife, but more likely the brain just scanning itself as a survival technique.
He said thanks to modern technology and science “death does not have to be limited to philosophy and religion, but it can be explored through science”.
He added: “They can hear things and record all conversations that are going on around them.”