Dr. Karl Jansen's
Karl L. R. Jansen, M.D., Ph.D. is a Member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and is the world's leading expert on ketamine. He has studied ketamine at every level. While earning his doctorate in clinical pharmacology at the University of Oxford, he photographed the receptors to which ketamine binds in the human brain. He has published papers on his discovery of the similarities between ketamine's psychoactive effects and the near-death experience during his study of medicine in New Zealand. Dr. Jansen believes that ketamine can have potent healing powers when used as an adjunct to psychotherapy but warns of the addictive nature of ketamine. Because of this risk, he has developed new methods for the treatment of ketamine addiction. Dr. Jansen left Oxford in 1993 to train in psychiatry at the Maudsley and Bethlem Royal Hospitals. Dr. Jansen welcomes correspondence on the topic of ketamine. He can be contacted via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following is an
excerpt from Dr. Karl Jansen's book,
Ketamine: Dreams and Realities,
in which he documents a man's near-death experience that is identical to a ketamine
experience he had later. The man was interviewed after he lost his wife in a
tragic fire. The man had a NDE while trying to rescue
her. A week later, he took ketamine for the first time in his life. He
reported that his ketamine experience was nearly identical to the NDE he had a week later.
I had a NDE about 6
days before the first time I took ketamine because my then partner
died. She had a party at her flat and the flat caught
fire. I got out of the flat and thought that she was out as
well, but she'd been really drunk and she'd slipped and fallen and
pushed the room door shut. I got out and shouted, "Christ,
she's not here!" and went back up. The flat was full of
thick smoke. I thought, "Right, what you do is you get down
on the floor and crawl along the corridor." But there was
no air there. I crawled along and couldn't see anything. I
could hear her and I was trying to push open this door but I
couldn't. I was overcome with smoke, and clink!
thing it was like white light and then everything going very
fast. All these sounds and things sounding far off and very
close and far off, then whoosh! You're out of your body and
there was all this light. All this sounds really crap, like one
of those 1940s Old Testament films ... It all happened so
quickly. The next thing, it's very bright, you're out of your
body, flying through the night and there's light, there's light. Er, well, it's pitch black and there's light - that's a better way of
You go into the light and you just feel that
everybody who has ever died is there. Not heavenly choirs as
such, but there's certainly a lot of people around you and you get
waves of concern. And the next thing was swoosh! And it
was back to the everyday world very quickly. When I came back it
was so abrupt, and I was fine really - I had a very narrow
escape. Your first impression would be that you fly up in the
air but that can't be. I'd have laughed at myself ten years ago
for saying this kind of thing.
So I had an out-of-body experience
and then I got hauled out of the flat by ambulance guys who put an
oxygen mask on my face. My partner was on a life-support machine
from the Saturday until Monday, when they switched the machine
off. I had acquired the K a week previously for the party, but
didn't do it until a few days after she died. It was the first
time I had taken K.
I had the flat to myself. Everybody
was out and I sat in the front room on a big comfy chair and just took
this stuff. Within about 5 minutes I was out of my body. I
was still numb after what had happened. It was like being
outside of myself but still there. I could smell this perfume
she used to wear. I could sense her all round me. It was
like a way out and it was exactly like the out-of-body thing. It
was very upsetting and it did shake my atheism, very much so. It
made me aware of it not being the end when all this ends.
tried K again quite a number of times and the same thing happened
every time. It was like this pure consciousness. I hadn't
any shape. You could fly and you could actually travel although
you are still in the same place. You are in the place where
everybody is who has ever died. It's this big entity. It's
not like an old guy with a beard. It's this sense of energy that
everybody who has ever moved on is there together and it was like she
was looking after me. Precisely the same thing happened with the
K as happened in the (burning) flat, which to someone not expecting it
would be pretty scary. It was exactly the same.
that I would never find anybody again and why hadn't I died as well,
why hadn't I managed to get her out of that room? I thought it
was my fault, I blamed myself for ages. I had a half-hearted
idea of taking loads of pills and not waking up but what's the point
in that? I've already been to that place once and they wouldn't
have me then, so why would they have me the second time?
Concerned friends and parents made me go into counseling and therapy
and to see psychiatrists. I was put onto various things like
Prozac, but I was finding that my own "extra treatment" (the
ketamine) was doing me a lot more good because K is very
cathartic. I was doing it because it made me feel better, except
the first time when it was quite a shock. It made me feel a lot
less unhappy knowing that she was still there in one way or
another. It would have taken a lot longer for me to recover if I
hadn't taken K because it gets rid of a lot of hurt instantly ...
It's very reassuring in a way.
"What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly." -
Copyright 2007 Near-Death Experiences & the Afterlife