Justin Nobel, B.Sc., M.A., M.S. (www.justinnobel.com) is an award-winning freelance journalist who operates Digital Dying on the Internet. Justin explores death, across history and around the globe. In 2012, Justin interviewed Kevin Williams, the webmaster of this site, by phone and the following is an edited transcript of that interview. I took the liberty to expand on the questions asked of me from the first interview.
JUSTIN NOBEL: Kevin Williams runs a popular near death experience (NDE) website, www.near-death.com. “I no longer have any doubt that life goes on after death,” says Williams. Is it really possible to float above your own body? Does consciousness live on after death? Are all our brains and the entire universe just a hologram? Digital Dying recently spoke about these matters with Kevin Williams, who runs one of the web’s most popular sites on near-death experiences. What’s a near-death experience like?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: There may be succinct stages experienced such as going through a tunnel, having a homecoming with loved ones in heaven, experiencing a life review, and a marvelous encounter with a being made of divine light and love. Some people observe heavenly temples, universities, and cities of light. Some people are given visions of the future, such as, what would happen to surviving family members if the person decided to stay in the light and not to return from their NDE. Some people are shown the future of Earth based on current probabilities or they are given a great amount of spiritual knowledge in an effort to foster change on Earth. NDEs are as very dynamic – if not more dynamic – than any experience on Earth. People have described the experience as more real than any physical reality. By comparison, humans appear to be going about their business on Earth in a kind of trance while conscious awareness on the Other Side is far more developed: 360 degree vision, communication by means of telepathy, instantaneous travel, a realm where thoughts are deeds, etc. Some people have even received advanced scientific knowledge from their NDE leading to new discoveries. Some people are not able to recall the great amount of knowledge given them after their NDE, while others are allowed to retain them. People having NDEs often return saying our entire world system is upside down: the raising and teaching of children should be society’s highest priority while the pursuit of materialistic things and pleasures should be last. Some people are shown their past lives on Earth. Other people might experience time travel and “re-remember” events experienced from before they were born: forgotten knowledge. Death is just a “body problem” where we enjoy life unrestricted by a physical body. Death has been described as like taking off an old coat you have been wearing for a very long time.
JUSTIN NOBEL: What typically triggers a near death experience?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: The most transcendental ones are caused by triggers which bring people closest to physical death such as cardiac arrest. You can also experience them through mediation, hypnosis, psychedelics or even sex. I profile one woman on my website who has out-of-body experiences when she has sexual orgasms. Dreams can trigger an NDE also. Many people don’t realize this but when we dream at night we actually enter various realms of the afterlife. Every night we go back the spiritual realm – our true home – otherwise life would be intolerable. We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings having a human experience.
JUSTIN NOBLE: More insights can be found in the article “Dead But Not Dead, Fantastic But True Stories of Coming Back from the Grave.” Kevin, have you ever had a near-death experience?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: Not in this lifetime. However, when my mother was killed in an auto accident in 2001, two days later she interrupted a dream I was having. In the dream, I opened a door and ran into a room. Then lo and behold, there was my mother sitting on a couch in a kind of heavenly waiting room! The moment I saw her, I experienced a wonderful miracle – something I never experienced before or since. When I saw her, I immediately awoke – except I still in the dream! I knew I was really seeing and talking to my mother and that I was still in a dream. I later learned this phenomenon is called a lucid dream. I said to her, “Mom, you’re not dead!” She replied that she had yet to contact my younger brother. Then I woke up knowing I had just communicated with my mother from the Other Side to tell me she was still alive. I phoned my sister days later to tell her about it and discovered she had exactly the same dream on the exact same night. Her response was also the same as mine, “Mom, you’re not dead.” This phenomenon is known as a “veridical dream.” This after-death communication with my mother was my own personal validation that consciousness survives death. Before this experience, I was sure there was an afterlife based upon NDE research alone. But after this experience, I have absolutely no doubt that life goes on after death. People who have NDEs realize this also and nobody can tell them otherwise. NDE studies also show that a person does not need to have an NDE to benefit from them. Merely reading enough NDE testimonies is enough for many people to gain the same spiritual benefits NDErs do. This is one of the main reasons I built my website.
JUSTIN NOBEL: When did humans first begin having near death experiences?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: Plato was the first person in Western Civilization to describe a near-death experience in his book Republic where he describes a tale involving a soldier called Er. Er was killed in battle and was about to have his body burned on a funeral pile when he revived. The experience he described while dead is remarkably similar to modern NDE testimony. Er observed some souls descending to Earth to be reincarnated and observed other souls ascending to higher spirit realms. You might say Plato was the father of the near-death experience in the West. But hundreds of years later, Tibetan monks were reading a religious text called the Tibetan Book of the Dead which is based partly upon Tibetan NDErs called “delogs.” So it took thousands of years for scientists in the West to slowly but surely climb and overcome the mountain of ignorance reaching for the summit of enlightenment and attaining the peak of scientific understanding only to see Tibetan monks who have been sitting there for millennia.
JUSTIN NOBEL: How does the idea of God fit into a near death experience?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: The word “God” has so much “baggage” attached to it that it’s practically meaningless. But when I refer to God or divinity, I don’t mean a big Old Man on a Throne. In the physical realm, I believe divinity is best understood as “Mother Nature” or panpsychism. I believe the NDE evidence shows life itself to be divine. Mathematics is the language of God in the physical and quantum physics is the science of God. At the spiritual level, I believe the evidence shows divinity is best understood as being similar to the all-pervasive “Force” described in the movie “Star Wars.” NDE research reveals the existence of a hierarchy of afterlife realms or dimensions where souls can experience God in various degrees according to this hierarchy. The lower afterlife realms are where God is less obvious and where there is a lesser manifestation of divine light, love, and life. The higher the soul moves up this afterlife hierarchy, the more the manifestation of God become greater and more obvious. As souls, we are working our way up this hierarchy with the goal of attaining at-one-ment with the divine. I believe the evidence suggests the physical universe we currently inhabit to be roughly in the middle of this afterlife hierarchy. This means we are already in the afterlife right now; and that, as human beings, we are halfway to heaven. If this is true, then it explains why the manifestation of divine light, love, and life in this universe is not so obvious. People who have experienced divinity in higher afterlife realms by means of an NDE have described “God” on the Other Side as being like the air we breathe here on Earth. God’s presence is felt everywhere in the higher afterlife realms and is so obvious you can’t deny it. However, materialistic scientists do not accept subjective or personal experiences as proof of anything scientific even though Einstein once eloquently stated, “the only source of knowledge is experience.”
JUSTIN NOBEL: Another great article along these lines is, “How Different Religions Around the World Deal with Death.” Kevin, how does faith determine ones’ ability to have a near-death experience?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: It doesn’t matter what your belief system is to have an NDE. People from all walks of life have reported them. And when it comes to having a positive or hellish NDEs, it doesn’t seem to matter what your belief system is or how you die. What matters most on the Other Side is how you lived your life and how much have you loved others unconditionally. Love is the key because love is God. Love is the “glue” holding everything in life together: from the atom to the solar system, to the galaxy and the universe. So it doesn’t matter whether you are an atheist, a priest, a Buddhist, or even a Satanist; the only thing that matters to God is how much love you have expressed toward others. It is apparent to me from NDE studies that the “force” of love is somehow the solution to the physicists’ Grand Unifying Field Theory and the Theory of Everything. The divine power of love is the life force holding everything together and bringing all things to light. Unconditional love is the closest thing we can experience to heaven and to the divine. It is the kind of love that goes beyond the physical and is spiritual. People who have NDEs describe the love felt in the higher realms as unlike any love experienced on Earth. Love in this physical realm is more closer to erotic love than divine love. The level of divine light and love manifested in these realms depends on what afterlife realm you’re currently in. Our universe is merely one of these realms.
NDE research also reveals atheists have just as many positive NDEs than religious people. In fact, NDE research suggests a person’s belief system is not a big factor in determining whether their NDE is positive or hellish. For example, my uncle is a retired radiologist and a devoted student of astronomy and evolution. He doesn’t believe in a God at all, but I know he “worships” the “higher power” in his own way through his devotion to studying nature. And who can say he is not more religious than many practicing religionists? After all, Edgar Cayce once put it this way, “He who understands nature walks close with God.” I believe there is a lot of truth in this quote. NDE testimony overwhelmingly describes God in natural terms of light, life, and love.
JUSTIN NOBEL: What does quantum physics have to do with near-death experiences?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: As I mentioned before, mathematics is the language of God in the physical. There is also evidence that quantum physics may one day prove mathematically how non-physical consciousness survives bodily death. It is not difficult to view consciousness as an energy which can neither be created nor destroyed. Consciousness is supreme when it comes to NDE studies and quantum mechanics. There is evidence from physics, psychology, philosophy, parapsychology, and religion , , , and  suggesting consciousness is not localized in the brain and that it transcends the physical realm. There is also sufficient evidence in my mind to accept a theory of quantum mechanics where our consciousness perception of objects causes the collapse of light waves to light particles which is how we see things. The things we see “out there” are not really as solid as we perceive them. It’s kind of an illusion because all physical objects are composed of atoms consisting mostly of empty space where the nucleus and electrons are very tiny. It is the enormous energy of the atom itself which makes objects look and feel solid. Therefore, because atoms are filled mostly with energy in empty space, it is not difficult assume we are mostly composed of “spirit energy” So there’s a dual nature to reality and this duality explains why our consciousness can be separated from our physical bodies.
Consciousness is something akin to the airwaves of a radio station. You can destroy a radio but you haven’t destroyed the airwaves where the music is playing. So there appears a difference between the mind and the brain. We are not our brains. We are not merely physical beings. There is more to us than just the sum of our parts. This theory of the brain, called the “Holonomic Brain Theory” is part of an even larger concept called “Holism” and the “Holographic Principle” where the universe can be defined as having the properties of a hologram. Our brains seem to act like hologram-generators which is how we see things in our mind’s eye. And if the universe and everything in it is a hologram, this would explain why our consciousness sometimes seems to be in line with other people’s consciousness. It would also explain a plethora of paranormal phenomena such as telepathy and even NDEs and OBEs.
In the bizarre realm of quantum mechanics, two particles can become “entangled” and interact with each other – no matter how far away they are from each other – even if they are separated by billions of light years. This fact caused Einstein a lot of headaches and he referred to this phenomena as “spooky actions from a distance” because nothing can travel faster than light. Yet, because two particles can interact with each other faster than the speed of light, it suggests that two particles can be connected no matter how far apart they are. This fact supports the emerging holographic paradigm of all atoms in the universe being connected to all other atoms in the form of a hologram.
JUSTIN NOBEL: Will science someday be able to explain the afterlife with a simple equation?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: Quantum physicists have discovered the so-called “God particle” recently – also known as the Higgs boson – the elusive particle which bestows mass on all other particles. This last “piece” of the cosmic puzzle in the “Standard Model” of particle physics is a major development. The Standard Model incorporates other possible theories in physics supporting the existence of a quantum nature of consciousness. If the mind relies on some quantum mechanism, then it’s possible consciousness is not limited exclusively or localized to the brain and skull. Evidence for the existence of quantum processes in warm and “wet” biological systems are growing every year. There’s a major scientific study going on right now trying to determine whether under scientific controls patients can observe events while “outside” of their body. There’s a mountain of “circumstantial evidence” supporting this; but the problem is that this kind of evidence is considered subjective – subject to a person’s own interpretation – and science demands objective evidence. Unfortunately, the scientific method is unable to quantify conscious experience. In other words, the mind has not explained the brain fully. It’s why science is having so much trouble keeping up knowledge attained from mysticism and spirituality. It appears to me that the fields of science, psychology, philosophy and religion are quickly approaching a point of merger and neither field really likes it.
JUSTIN NOBEL: What does the future hold for humans?
KEVIN WILLIAMS: From all the evidence I have come across, someday in the future humans will evolve to such an extent they will be able to walk on water, control the weather with their minds, and possess great psychic abilities. Through the process of evolution-reincarnation, enough souls will be born into this world from the higher realms bringing with them the so-called “kingdom of God” on Earth – the “second coming” of Christ and the thousand years of peace – the final incarnation of the Hindu god Vishnu – the World to Come and the Hebrew Messiah – the arrival of the Maitreya Buddha – a close encounter of the “alien/angel” kind – whatever you want to call the coming “quantum leap” in the evolutionary progress of humanity. Souls from the lower spirit realms will not be permitted to reincarnate at this time to allow this “Golden Age” to come. After this Golden Age (of Aquarius), souls from the lower spirit realms will once again be allowed to reincarnate; and by then, the world will be in a better position to school them.
But before this Golden Age arrives, the evidence suggests there will some kind of major “catalyst” to spark major changes on Earth and humanity – some kind of global disaster – whether it be global climate, nuclear war, pole reversal, or an asteroid/comet. I believe that, at least in the Bible, the evidence tilts toward an asteroid/comet which will force people to stop killing each other and start helping one other. Many cities will disappear around the coastlines of the world, but it’s not the end of the world. It’s the end of an old paradigm and the beginning of a new paradigm where people will become much less technological and much more spiritual and closer to nature. There will be great loss of life, but it is our Mother Earth purifying herself from humanity’s transgressions upon her. Through it all, humanity will continue to evolve and reincarnate while paradise on Earth is ultimately attained. Once a person has reached their evolutionary goal on Earth and has completed their “mission from God,” the soul has earned its way to move on to higher “schools” – afterlife dimensions – in God’s gigantic “University.” You might say everyone is working their way up God’s “Corporate Ladder” – the “many abodes of our Heavenly Father” as Jesus mentioned – towards the goal of attaining with the “Godhead.” Whether this progression lasts forever, I don’t know. But we – as human beings – are constantly moving in and out of these other dimensions of reality through our dreams, meditation, daydreams, and out-of-body experiences.