Though many people believe in the finality of death, some have experienced firsthand what happens after you die. These individuals have had what are called “near-death experiences” (NDEs), which refer to a broad range of perceptual phenomena that occur in close proximity to death. Though each person’s experience is unique, there are some commonalities among NDEs that suggest that there may be life after death. Here are four of the most commonly reported aspects of NDEs.
1. Increased Sensory Perception
One of the most common reported aspects of NDEs is an increased sense of awareness and perception. Many people report having out-of-body experiences (OBEs) in which they see their bodies from above as well as their surroundings in great detail. Some have even been able to describe events that took place while they were clinically dead or unconscious, such as being able to read the time on a clock or hospital equipment. This heightened sense of awareness and perception seems to contradict the idea that we are merely our physical bodies and that consciousness ceases to exist when our bodies die.
2. Life Reviews
Many people who have had NDEs report having what is called a “life review.” This refers to a sudden and vivid recollection of all the major events from one’s life—both the good and the bad. For some, this life review is positive and gratifying, providing a sense of peace and understanding. For others, it can be quite distressing, bringing up feelings of guilt, regret, and shame. Regardless of how it is experienced, the life review provides conclusive evidence that we are more than our physical bodies since it is seemingly impossible for our conscious minds to recall every single event from our lives while we are alive—let alone while we are dead!
3. Meeting Deceased Loved Ones
Another common aspect of NDEs is meeting deceased loved ones or other beings of light. These encounters often provide comfort and reassurance to those who have had them, serving as proof that love persists beyond death and that there is indeed life after death. In some cases, these encounters with deceased loved ones have also led to revelations about one’s life purpose or destiny.
4. A Benevolent force
Finally, many people who have had NDEs report feeling a strong presence of love or light—a benevolent force that surrounds them and makes them feel safe despite being in close proximity to death. This feeling of love often fills people with a sense of peace and bliss, leading them to understand that death is not something to be feared but rather a natural part of life.
Though each person’s near-death experience is unique, there are some common themes among them that suggest that there may indeed be life after death. If you have ever wondered what happens when you die, these four characteristics of NDEs may give you some insight.