Oprah Interviews Actor/Comedian Tracy Morgan About His Near-Death Experience
Sharon Stone On Surviving Her Brain Aneurysm: ‘I Was Burned To The Ground’
July 28, 2014
George Michael Celebrates Near-Death Experience With New Single ‘White Light’
By Alan Hippleheuser
July 26, 2012
Jane Seymour On Living With An Open Heart
By Dena Ross
October 21, 2011
Near-Death Experiences of the Hollywood Rich and Famous
Larry Hagman’s Life-Enhancing Near-Death-Like Experiences
By John L. Griffin, PhD
Oprah sits down with actor/comedian Tracy Morgan to discuss the details of his near-death experience and how his outlook on life has changed after his devastating 2014 car crash. Tracy opens up about the love and support he received after the accident and how the medicine of humor helped him to make his remarkable recovery. Watch the full interview here.
Actor Clint Walker, while being interviewed for the Extraordinary TV series, shares how an inner voice has guided and protected him his whole life. He also describes a near-death experience he had that was precipitated by ignoring his inner voice.
“Clinton, who used the same surgeon as [Barbara] Walters, recalls that the physician stopped his heart for 73 minutes, standard procedure during the surgery. ‘That is kinda scary,’ he said. ‘You’re basically being kept alive by a machine.’ The former president also strikes a spiritual note, saying that at one point he saw a ‘circle of light’ and the images of Hillary, Chelsea, and other ‘people I love.'”
NDES OF THE RICH AND FAMOUS
Compiled by Matthew Dovel
Gathered from near-death.com
The near-death experiences of rich and famous people are particularly interesting. They are rolling in the money. They are known all over the world. They are often beautiful, articulate and very talented in what they do. With this in mind, why would such a person reveal to everyone that they were dead and came back to life? Money? They already got that. Fame? They are already famous. In fact, by telling everyone they came back from the dead, they may be risking their own reputation. People who reveal such things to others often become the butt of jokes or thought to be crazy. Why would anyone rich and famous subject themselves to this when it might result in lost fame and fortune? The only rational reason that such people who have nothing to gain is that it really happened to them and they want to share it with the world. The following are rich and famous people who risked it all to tell the world about their near-death experience….
Jane Seymor an actress most noted for the cult classic movie, Somewhere in Time, with actor Christopher Reeves, and the television series Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman. When Jane Seymour was 36 years of age, she had a severe case of the flu and was given an injection of penicillin. She suffered an allergic reaction which led to a near-death experience.
“I literally left my body. I had this feeling that I could see myself on the bed, with people grouped around me. I remember them all trying to resuscitate me. I was above them, in the corner of the room looking down. I saw people putting needles in me, trying to hold me down, doing things. I remember my whole life flashing before my eyes, but I wasn’t thinking about winning Emmys or anything like that. The only thing I cared about was that I wanted to live because I did not want anyone else looking after my children. I was floating up there thinking, “No, I don’t want to die. I’m not ready to leave my kids.” And that was when I said to God, “If you’re there, God, if you really exist and I survive, I will never take your name in vain again.” Although I believe that I “died” for about thirty seconds, I can remember pleading with the doctor to bring me back. I was determined I wasn’t going to die.” Then Jane suddenly found herself back in her body.
Peter Sellers the comic genius of a generation of actors. He brought brilliant characterizations to numerous films, including The Mouse That Roared (1959), Dr. Strangelove (1964), The Pink Panther (1964), and Being There (1979). He was known for his enthusiastic way of totally absorbing himself in his characters, even carrying roles offstage. He also suffered from sad moods between films. While he knew his characters thoroughly, he said that he really did not know who he was. Then Peter Sellers, the brilliant, confused actor, had a near-death experience. Seated in a Hollywood mockup of a limousine’s back seat while shooting his last great film, Being There, he told Shirley MacLaine about it. He was astonished that she did not consider him bonkers. Shirley documents their conversation in her book, Out on a Limb.
In 1964, during the first of a rapid series of eight heart attacks, when his heart stopped and he was clinically dead, he had an out-of-body experience and saw the bright, loving light. Sellers stated, “Well, I felt myself leave my body. I just floated out of my physical form and I saw them cart my body away to the hospital. I went with it … I wasn’t frightened or anything like that because I was fine; and it was my body that was in trouble.” Meanwhile, the doctor saw that Sellers was dead and began to massage his heart vigorously. Sellers stated, “I looked around myself and I saw an incredibly beautiful bright loving white light above me. I wanted to go to that white light more than anything. I’ve never wanted anything more. I know there was love, real love, on the other side of the light which was attracting me so much. It was kind and loving and I remember thinking That’s God.” Sellers’ out-of-body soul tried to elevate itself toward the light, but fell short. Sellers stated, “Then I saw a hand reach through the light. I tried to touch it, to grab onto it, to clasp it so it could sweep me up and pull me through it.” But just then his heart began beating again, and at that instant the hand’s voice said, “It’s not time. Go back and finish. It’s not time.” As the hand receded Sellers felt himself floating back down to his body, waking up bitterly disappointed.
What effect did his NDE have on Sellers? His biographer stated that “The repeated act of dying became for Peter Sellers the most important experience of his life.” (Walker, 158) Sellers himself said of death, “I’ll never fear it again.” Family and friends found him more spiritual and reflective than before. His biographer stated, “The experience of resurrection intensified Sellers’ spiritual concern and friends discerned the start of a new introspectiveness, a sense of his not “being there” in spirit, though present in body.” According to his biographer, Sellers’ wife, Britt Ekland, found it unnerving that her previously restless husband had now become so quiet. He was now “sitting still over lengthy periods, saying nothing, but staring at her with his thoughts turned inward.” Sellers returned to England for an extended convalescence, but soon reverted to old habits and bought his 84th car, an expensive Ferrari.
A couple of years before his NDE, Peter had played an earnest priest in Heavens Above, and developed a serious interest in Christianity (although he was born Jewish). During this time, and following his father’s death in 1962, Sellers was drawn to long, serious discussions about life’s meaning with a neighboring vicar in London, the Rev. John Hester, “to try to reconcile the world of plenty he inhabited with the emptiness of soul that oppressed him.” (Walker, 143) After his NDE he deepened his quest for spiritual truth, continuing his discussions with Rev. Hester, and coming close to joining the church. In later years he practiced yoga, saying once that “Yoga has given me a tranquility I wouldn’t have thought possible.” (Walker, 217) Sellers’ NDE strengthened his conviction that he was a reincarnated soul whose power of mimicry sprang from memories of past lives. But during his incarnation as Peter Sellers, at least, he felt lost. He did not know who he was and why he was on this earth. He explained to this to Shirley MacLaine this way, “I know I have lived many times before … that experience confirmed it to me, because in this lifetime I felt what it was for my soul to actually be out of my body. But ever since I came back, I don’t know why I don’t know what it is I’m supposed to do, or what I came back for.” (MacLaine, 174) Spirituality gave Sellers some peace, but did not still his restless drift. In 1977, he complained that his yoga practice did not stop his heart disease. According to his biographer, “After all, what did it do for me? I obeyed all the instructions. I said my prayers regularly. I did all the exercises for peace, tranquility, and happiness. And all that happened was that I got steadily worse.” Sellers’ NDE awakened him to a deepened spirituality, but it did not usher in a major, lasting change in his mental habits and his outlook on life. This brilliant actor still felt lost. But Peter Sellers had a final heart attack. And it was then, that it was his time to go.
Elizabeth Taylor spoke about her experience of having died on the operating table while undergoing surgery, and of passing through a tunnel towards a brilliant white light. Interviewed by Larry King on CNN’s Larry King Live, the legendary Hollywood star related how she had died for five minutes on the operating table. Ms. Taylor said that while she was clinically dead, she had encountered the spirit of Michael Todd, one of her former husbands, whom she referred to as her great love. She had wanted to stay with Todd, she said, but he had told her that she had work and life ahead of her, and he “pushed me back to my life.” Following her resuscitation, the eleven-person medical team — including doctors, nurses, etc. — witnessed Taylor’s testimonial of this event.
“I was pronounced dead once and actually saw the light. I find it very hard to talk about, actually, because it sounds so corny. It happened in the late ’50s, and I saw Mike (Todd, Taylor’s third husband, who was killed in a plane crash in 1958). When I came to, there were about 11 people in the room. I’d been gone for about five minutes — they had given me up for dead and put my death notice on the wall. I shared this with the people that were in the room next to me. Then after that I told another group of friends, and I thought, “Wow, this sounds really screwy. I think I’d better keep quiet about this.”
“For a long time I didn’t talk about it, and it’s still hard for me to talk about. But I have shared it with people with AIDS because if the moment occurs and you’re really sharing, it’s real. I am not afraid of death, because I have been there.”
In an interview with America’s AIDS magazine , Liz described her NDE again: “I went to that tunnel, saw the white light, and Mike [Todd]. I said, Oh Mike, you’re where I want to be. And he said, ‘No, Baby. You have to turn around and go back because there is something very important for you to do. You cannot give up now.’ It was Mike’s strength and love that brought me back.”
The late Robert Pastorelli was most noted for his starring role in the television series, Murphy Brown. At the age of 19, he had a car accident which caused a near-death experience that literally changed how he was living, in a very dramatic way.
“It smashed right into the driver’s door. It hit me so hard it actually knocked the shoes off my feet. My car rolled over about four times on this big highway and the next thing I knew I was in intensive care with a collapsed lung. Every one of my ribs was shattered. I had lacerations to my head and face, and my kidneys, spleen and gall bladder were all ruptured. I was a mess.
“I was in excruciating pain. Then, in the next second, there was no pain. Suddenly I realized I was out of my body. I was floating above myself, looking down at my unconscious body lying in the hospital emergency room with my eyes closed. I could see tubes down my nose and throat. I knew I was dying and I thought, “Well, this must be death.” I even saw a priest giving me the last rites. But it was the most peaceful feeling in the world. Then I saw my father starting to faint out of grief. Two nurses grabbed him and sat him down in a chair across the room.
“When I looked down and saw my father’s pain it had an effect on me. I firmly believe that at that moment I made a decision to live, not die. The next thing I knew I was waking up back in my body. Later, in the recovery room, when I was fully conscious, I told my father what had happened, his fainting and all. He was astounded.”
Basic Instinct star, Sharon Stone, has told how she had a white light experience during her brain scare. Stone says she almost died after internal bleeding caused by a tear in an artery at the base of her skull. Sharon was interviewed by Katie Couric about her journey into the afterlife.
“When it hit me I felt like I’d been shot in the head. That’s the only way I can really describe it. It hit me so hard it knocked me over on the sofa. And Phil was out of town and I called him and said, “I think I had a stroke.” But in all fairness, I’m a person who’s always saying, “I think I’ve had a stroke, I think I’ve had a heart attack, I think I’ve had a brain hemorrhage … I had a real journey with this that took me to places both here and beyond that affected me so profoundly that my life will never be the same … I get to be not afraid of dying and I get to tell other people that it’s a fabulous thing and that death is a gift. And not that you should kill yourself, but that when death comes to you, as it will, that it’s a glorious and beautiful thing. This kind of giant vortex of white light was upon me and I kind of — poof! Sort of took off into this glorious, bright, bright, bright white light and I started to see and be met by some of my friends. But it was very fast — whoosh! Suddenly, I was back. I was in my body and I was in the room.”
Sharon Stone On Surviving Her Brain Aneurysm: ‘I Was Burned To The Ground’
July 28, 2014
In 2001, actress Sharon Stone says she was knocked over with a pain was so severe, she felt as if she had been shot in the head. In her “Oprah’s Master Class” interview, Stone recalls the terrifying details of her near-death experience.
“I called my mom and I said, ‘Mom, I’m calling you from the emergency room…I’m having a brain hemorrhage,'” she says in the above clip from the episode.
Stone says the brain aneurysm changed everything for her and ushered in a dark period that ultimately gave her a new outlook on life. “I had to learn to walk, hear, write, talk, remember and everything all over again,” she says.
“I thought that I was dying for a long time, even after I came home.”
In the years that followed, her life came apart at the seams. In 2004, Stone and her husband Phil Bronstein divorced. In 2008, he was granted full custody of their son.
“There was a part of me that felt like wow, I lost so much,” Stone says. “My career was basically over, my family was over, I got divorced, my child was taken away — a lot of my identity, I thought.”
“I got down, down to it,” she says. “And when I got down to it, it’s like being a phoenix. I was burned to the ground. Because everything I had been before, I thought, ‘I’m not any of those things anymore.'”
Losing everything was like a death, she says. “But it’s not a bad thing. You know, death isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Everything got richer for me through this experience. Everything got better for me through this experience.”
“It was like starting over,” she says. “Every death is a rebirth.”
Gary Busey, once Hollywood’s bad boy, was nominated for an Oscar for the movie, The Buddy Holly Story. Busey, who fought addiction with drugs and alcohol for several years, was nicknamed Gary Abusey by his wife. Busey has had supernatural encounters in which he nearly died three or more times in his life …a drug overdose, cancer, and an accident west of Albuquerque, New Mexico. But the most tragic experience, and one that changed his life, was a motorcycle accident in 1988. Gary was going about 40-50 miles per hour riding on 750 pounds of cold steel. He was not wearing a helmet when he crashed. He was flung over the top of his cycle, head first into the curb and he cracked his skull. Busey had a NDE while he was dying on the operating table after having brain surgery. During his NDE, he was surrounded by angels. Busey stated that they didn’t appear in the form that people see on Christmas cards. The angels he saw were big balls of light that floated and carried nothing but love and warmth — and this love is unconditional.
As a result of his NDE, he recently dedicated his life to Jesus and has been a prominent speaker at many Christian Promise Keeper rallies. He is no longer the “bad boy” of Hollywood.
Larry Hagman, of Dallas and I Dream of Jeanie fame, underwent a liver transplant in 1995. Years of heavy drinking resulted in cirrhosis and cancer of the liver. He was only weeks away from certain death at the time of his liver transplant and near-death experience. Larry describes what he experienced:
“I was able to look over the edge. I got a little glimpse of what was the next step. I didn’t see a light some people see, but I had a wonderful feeling of bliss and warmth. The bottom line is love, that sounds corny, but it was just lovely, uplifting.” Read Larry Hagman’s entire experience here.
Actress Sally Kirkland has impressive film credits which include Bruce Almighty, The Sting, JFK, and Anna for which she was nominated for an Oscar as best actress. In 1966, Sally was participating in legal psychedelic experiments with doctors whereby she would have experiences of cosmic consciousness. Unfortunately, these experiences were followed by her life spinning out of control. The pain of life had just become more than she could bear. This led to a nervous breakdown and several suicide attempts. Eventually, she overdosed on Nembutal and Seconal during a suicide attempt and was found with her heart and lungs stopped. Last rites were even administered. It was during this suicide attempt that Sally had a NDE. She states, “A miracle happened, I was given a second chance and this has been a way to stay on the straight and narrow for 30 years, with the exception of a period in 1975 where I went off the track prior to ordination. When people hear the hell I went through on drugs, they listen to how to get off them.” Today, Sally is a yoga teacher and serves as an ordained minister in the Church of the Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness for the last decade, where she helps others to become drug free. When she is on stage, she uses the emotional recall of her own near-death experience as a source for bringing light to the roles she plays.
William Petersen, the star of the TV show CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, had a near-death experience which he described in an interview for Playboy magazine (March 2004, page 139).
“Years ago, doing a play in Chicago, I cut my finger in half onstage. We obviously had to stop because, well, I didn’t have a finger. By the time they got me to the ER I had lost a lot of blood and passed out. I could hear the doctors working on me, saying that they had lost my vital signs. I was on the “All That Jazz” escalator with a long tunnel and a lot of white light. Then I specifically remember a dominant male voice saying, “It’s not your time. Get off the escalator. You’ve got shit to do.” I came to, and got sewed up. Something in me changed, a sort of knowledge that somewhere on the other side, its good. For weeks, the more I talked about it, the more freaked out people got. Some of them were like, “Okay, whatever: You took too many drugs.”
By the late 1970s, Tony Bennett and his career were ailing. He had no record label, no manager, and he was performing almost exclusively in Vegas. Living in Los Angeles, he had a drug habit, a disintegrating marriage, and mounting debts. When the IRS started proceedings to take away his home, he nearly overdosed, and had a near-death experience.
“A golden light enveloped me in a warm glow,” he wrote in his autobiography. “I had the sense that I was about to embark on a very compelling journey. But suddenly I was jolted out of the vision … I knew I had to make major changes in my life.”
After this experience, Tony Bennett did make the changes he needed to make and his life and career turned around. With the help of his manager/son Danny, he decided to attempt to appeal to younger audiences with his music. Beginning with scheduled concerts at colleges and small theaters, he eventually got re-signed to Columbia Records in the mid-1980s although he hadn’t recorded an album in 11 years. Bennett also appeared on hip shows like The Simpsons and MTV’s Unplugged. His Unplugged disk won Tony Bennett a Grammy.
Donald Sutherland, who played the character, Hawkeye Piece, in the movie version of Mash, had a near-death experience when ill with meningitis in 1979.
“Suddenly the pain, fever and acute distress seemed to evaporate. I was floating above my body, surrounded by soft blue light. I began to glide down a long tunnel, away from the bed … but suddenly I found myself back in my body. The doctors told me later that I had actually died for a time.”
Eric Estrada became famous for his starring role in the television series, Chips. While filming an episode of Chips, he had a terrible motorcycle accident that led to a near-death experience.
“Suddenly I was in a long corridor with bright lights, beautiful music, and a feeling of great peace. But something seemed to be blocking my progress. A voice told me, “You’ve got to go back. You’ve a lot still to do. You’ve achieved success and stardom but you haven’t achieved personal happiness and peace of mind.” After hearing this voice, Estrada returned to his body.
Burt Reynolds, the star of Smokey and the Bandit, and many other movies, went into a coma when trying to kick a sleeping pill addiction. He stated, “I went into a coma for about eight or nine hours. At one point they tell me that the doctors brought Loni in to say goodbye to me. And I had the whole out of body experience. I heard the doctor say, “We’re losing him.” And I was going…”
Actor James Cromwell became internationally known from his role as Farmer Hoggett, the owner of a piglet in the hit movie Babe. At the age of five, James fell into the ocean which resulted in a near-death experience. Since then, James describes his whole life as a mystical event. After his NDE, James has recurring images in his dreams that are connected to previous incarnations. He states that he has memories of a past life in the days of King Arthur during the Middle Ages.
Chevy Chase became famous when he was one of the Not Ready For Prime-Time Players for Saturday Night Live. While working on the film called Modern Problems (1981), Chevy Chase was nearly killed by electrocution when a stunt went awry during the sequence in which he is wearing landing lights and dreams that he is an airplane. The current in the lights short-circuited through his arm, back, and neck muscles which caused him to lose consciousness and have a near-death experience. Now, he sees such accidents as a warning to “cut it out and save his skin.” After his experience, he went through a period of deep depression as many experiencers do when they don’t want to return from their NDE.
Lou Gossett Jr.
Accomplished actor Lou Gossett Jr., famous for his role as a drill sergeant in An Officer and a Gentleman, has had five near-death experiences. Lou’s most intriguing encounter occurred at the age of twelve. While playing baseball, he fell into a deep hole and experienced a brilliant tunnel of light. He also recalls a past incarnation as a pirate with a harem off the coast of Morocco.
Internationally renowned actor Eric Roberts has starred in more than 70 films, including the Dannion Brinkley movie, Saved by the Light. Eric has traveled all over the world encountering many colorful experiences. One of Eric’s most dramatic moments took place in Westport, Connecticut. He was driving along, became distracted by his dog, and crashed. He was hospitalized in a coma and almost died. It was this state that Eric claimed to have had a surreal out-of-body experience.
Rebecca DeMornay starred in the movie thriller, The Hand That Rocks The Cradle. When she was 7 years old, she was in Mexico City, Mexico, when she got ill from a peptic ulcer and had what she believes was a near-death experience.
“One night the doctors told my mother that there was only a fifty-fifty chance that I’d make it. I remember that I was tied to three IVs but I recall getting out of bed and looking out of the window: it was snowing. There was an old-fashioned lamppost and barefoot children were dancing around it, singing. I went back to bed and the next morning the crisis was over. In 1983 I started thinking about it: “Does it ever snow in Mexico City? Do they have these strange kind of lampposts there?” I went back to Mexico and I didn’t see those lampposts anywhere. Nor does it ever snow there.”
Rock star Ozzy Osbourne “died twice” after a bike accident which left him in a coma for eight days. The accident happened when he hit a pothole which was covered in leaves. It catapulted him over the handlebars and he tumbled down a hill with the bike landing on top of him, crushing his chest. His bodyguard rushed to his aid and gave him mouth to mouth when he twice stopped breathing. “If it wasn’t for Sam I probably wouldn’t be here. He had to bring me back to life twice.” Ozzy said. He described his confusion he had felt on gradually coming round from his coma. “I didn’t know where I was or how long I’d been there. I would drift in and out of consciousness. Other times there would be a white light shining through the darkness, but no f—king angels, no one blowing trumpets and no man in a white beard.” Ozzy, who has battled addictions to drink and drugs, said the crash finally made him “grow up.”. Ozzy stated, “You are bopping along through life and have your ups and downs, but it is amazing how two or three seconds can totally change your life.”
George Lucas is the creator of the blockbuster movie, Star Wars. Lucas is not conscious of having a near-death experience, yet he behaves as if he’d had one. As a youngster, Lucas was considered a punk, a non-achiever, romantic, unathletic, unassertive, and not studious. According to his father, he was good at only two things: cruising and hanging out. Wanting to race cars seemed to be his only ambition. Then, three days before he was to graduate from high school, without warning or advance-behavior cues, Lucas was involved in a spectacular car crash. For three days he hung between life and death and was hospitalized for two weeks more. About the crash, Lucas stated, “You can’t have that kind of experience and not feel that there must be a reason why you’re here. I realized I should be spending my time trying to figure out what that reason is and trying to fulfill it.”
George Lucas quoted in LIFE MAGAZINE’S “The Meaning of Life”
“When I was eighteen I was in an automobile accident and went through a near-death experience. I was actually taken away from the scene, presumed dead, and it wasn’t until I reached the hospital that the doctors revived my heartbeat and brought me back to life. This is the kind of experience that molds people’s beliefs. But I have found that most of my conclusions have evolved from observing life since that time. If I’ve come to know anything, it’s that these questions are as unknowable for us as they would be for a tree or for an ant.”
“Scholars who have studied myth and religion for many years and have connected all of the theories spawned over the ages about life and consciousness and who have taken away the superficial trappings, have come up with the same sensibility. They call it different things. They try to personify it and deal with it in different ways. But everybody seems to dress down the fact that life cannot be explained. The only reason for life is life. There is no why. We are. Life is beyond reason. One might think of life as a large organism, and we are but a small symbiotic part of it.”
“It is possible that on a spiritual level we are all connected in a way that continues beyond the comings and goings of various life forms. My best guess is that we share a collective spirit or life force or consciousness that encompasses and goes beyond individual life forms. There’s a part of us that connects to other humans, connects to other animals, connects to plants, connects to the planet, connects to the universe. I don’t think we can understand it through any kind of verbal, written or intellectual means. But I do believe that we all know this, even if it is on a level beyond our normal conscious thoughts.
“If we have a meaningful place in this process, it is to try to fit into a healthy, symbiotic relationship with other life force. Everybody, ultimately, is trying to reach a harmony with the other parts of the life force. And in trying to figure out what life is all about, we ultimately come down to expressions of compassion and love, helping the rest of the life force, caring about others without any conditions or expectations, without expecting to get anything in return. This is expressed in every religion, by every prophet.”
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