In 2009, I was brutally made to remember an NDE-type experience I had at age four and in the context of a surgical procedure. After it was brought back to my memory I struggled in making sense of it and “integrating” it. I’m fairly certain that this experience contributed to my lifelong C-PTSD, but is not its root cause. Before I digress any further: I had always wondered about NDEs and if they were all they are allegedly said to be in the literature. I had my doubts. Now this paper pretty much reconciles my doubts with my own thoughts surrounding all reports on NDEs both ancient and more recent in so far as they might be an echo to traumatic experiences made before, during and after child birth, largely referring to Stanislav Grof’s idea of “birth perinatal matrices” in four stages.
I have to say that this makes more sense than anything else I’ve been reading on the subject in years – going on five years as of today. To me, it’s a conclusive and comprehensive “stab” at reconciling post-traumatic symptoms with near death experiences and revealing their similarities as to their genesis.
If nothing else, this paper offers at least an additional view on NDEs and non-conventional states of consciousness as they occur during psychedelic experiences. Worth a read, I think. And to me a potential answer to a lot of questions I’ve been harboring. See for yourself, if so inclined.
Addendum as of January, 25th, 2020:
I revisited Dr. Bache’s eloquent and most conclusive and enticing essay. To me, he suggests a quite propelling presentation of reconciling frightening NDEs with difficult experiences undergone in LSD therapy that seeks to revisit and resolve problematic content along the perinatal matrices as devised and employed by Dr. Stanislav Grof.
I will agree that the similar nature of difficult BPM ‘material’ and frightening and distressing NDEs are quite striking and lend themselves to being perceived as somewhat related in that they may offer a perspective on the same source, i.e. unresolved material when not having completely transitioned all four stages of the perinatal matrices. I found particularly useful information in Bache’s suggestion that frightening NDEs might be reframed as incomplete NDEs altogether that got stuck prior to resolving into the transpersonal realm of one’s being and ‘ended’ in a rather devastating, utterly anguishing experience of personal annihilation, often referred to as ‘ego death’ (something, which is also predominantly known from the effects of ketamine). When viewing distressing NDEs from that perspective, I tend to ‘buy’ Dr. Bache’s argument in that one and the other – difficult BPM experiences and distressing NDEs – might be rooted in the same source, i.e. some of the fundamental experiences of the human condition.
Whewee…. only took me some years of getting into this, then setting it aside to manage the triggered anxiety, then coming back and also hearing another round of interviews on NDEs and what they might be evidence of a.s.o to somewhat ‘finally’ categorize my own experience at age four as ‘either-or’ :-), in that both approaches offer a very conclusive idea about just what the heck it was that I experienced so early into my life.
However…. the incurred damage is still prevalent, disability and incapacity still a fact, access to more efficient, more helpful therapy – like e.g. LSD therapy – nowhere in sight. I guess, I’m going to have to keep finding and pulling strings as to how to make it possible for me, where the effects of all the above have landed me in a quite frankly almost impossible and from the point of view of a rich life intolerable situation. I still need…. a small series of miracles (some of which I’ve been lucky to see manifest from my concerted, persevering efforts along with simply a grain of luck or – if you’re spiritually inclined – some help from… somewhere else than the visible realms 🙂 )