In her inspirational memoir, Dying To Be Me—My Journey From Cancer, To Near Death, To True Healing, published by Hay House Inc, Anita Moorjani relates her near death experience, when she sunk into coma for 30 hours as her organs failed, at the end of her four-year-long fight against cancer. When she emerged from coma, Anita’s condition improved so rapidly that she was able to be released from the hospital within weeks . . . without a trace of cancer in her body! In this extract, she talks about her near death experience.
I reached a point where I once again strongly sensed the comforting presence of my father surrounding me, almost as if he were embracing me.
Dad, it feels like I’ve come home! I’m so glad to be here. Life is so painful! I told him.
But you’re always home, darling, he impressed upon me. You always were, and you always will be. I want you to remember that.
Even though I hadn’t always been close to my father while I was growing up, all I could feel emanating from him now was glorious, unconditional love. During my physical life with him, I’d often been frustrated by his attempts to make me conform to Indian cultural norms, such as trying to get me married young and making me feel like a misfit because I didn’t always comply. But in this realm, I became aware that without any physical restrictions or the ties of all his cultural conditioning and expectations, all he had for me was pure love.
The cultural pressures he’d put on me during life had all dropped away, because they were all only part of physical existence. None of that mattered after death; those values didn’t carry through into the afterlife. The only thing that remained was our connection and the unconditional love we had for each other. So for the first time, I actually felt cherished and safe in my father’s presence. It truly felt amazing, as though I’d finally come home!
Our communication wasn’t verbal, but a complete melding of mutual comprehension. It wasn’t just that I understood my father— it was as though I became him. I was aware that he’d been with my entire family all through the years after he’d passed. He’d been with my mother, supporting her and watching over her; and he’d also been with me through my wedding and my illness.
I became aware that the essence of my father was communicating with me more directly: Sweetheart, I want you to know that it’s not your time to come home yet. But it’s still your choice whether you want to come with me or go back into your body.
But my body is so sick, drained, and ridden with cancer! was the immediate thought that came flooding through me. Why would I want to go back to that body? It has caused nothing but suffering—not only for me, but for Mum and Danny, too! I can’t see any purpose in going back.
Not to mention that the state of unconditional love was just so blissful, I couldn’t bear the thought of returning. I wanted to stay where I was forever and ever.
What subsequently happened is incredibly hard to describe. First, it felt as though whatever I directed my awareness toward appeared before me. Second, time was completely irrelevant. It wasn’t even a factor to consider, as though it didn’t exist.
Prior to this point, doctors had conducted tests on the functioning of my organs, and their report had already been written. But in that realm, it seemed as though the outcome of those tests and the report depended on the decision I had yet to make— whether to live or continue onward into death. If I chose death, the test results would indicate organ failure. If I chose to come back into physical life, they’d show my organs beginning to function again.
At that moment, I decided that I didn’t want to return. I then became conscious of my physical body dying, and I saw the doctors speaking with my family, explaining that it was death due to organ failure. At the same time, my father communicated with me, This is as far as you can go, sweetheart. If you go any further, you cannot turn back.
I became aware of a boundary before me, although the demarcation wasn’t physical. It was more like an invisible threshold marked by a variation in energy levels. I knew that if I crossed it, there was no turning back. All my ties with the physical would be permanently severed; and as I’d seen, my family would be told that my death was the result of organ failure caused by end-stage lymphoma.
The unconditional love and acceptance was incredible, and I wanted to cross the threshold in order to continue to experience it for eternity. It was as though I was enveloped in the oneness, the pure essence of every living being and creature, without their aches, pains, dramas, and egos.
I turned my awareness toward my distraught family’s reaction to the news of my death. I saw Danny’s head buried in my lifeless chest, holding my frail hand. His body was shaking with deep and inconsolable sobs. My mother stood over me, looking white as a sheet in disbelief. And my brother, Anoop, arrived to the shock that he didn’t make it in time.
Before I became sucked into what was going on with my physical existence and my family, however, I found myself being drawn away from my emotions. Once again, I was surrounded by the reassuring feeling of a greater story unfolding. I knew that even if I chose not to go back, everything was exactly as it should be in the grand tapestry of life.
In the moment that I made the decision to go on toward death, I became aware of a new level of truth.
I discovered that since I’d realized who I really was and understood the magnificence of my true self, if I chose to go back to life, my body would heal rapidly—not in months or weeks, but in days! I knew that the doctors wouldn’t be able to find a trace of cancer if I chose to go back into my body!
How can that be? I was astounded by this revelation, and wanted to understand why.
It was then that I understood that my body is only a reflection of my internal state. If my inner self were aware of its greatness and connection with All-that-is, my body would soon reflect that and heal rapidly.
Even though I always had a choice, I also discerned that there was something more. . . . It feels as though I have a purpose of some sort yet to fulfill. But what is it? How do I go about finding it?
I perceived that I wouldn’t have to go out and search for what I was supposed to do—it would unfold before me. It involved helping lots of people—thousands, maybe tens of thousands, perhaps to share a message with them. But I wouldn’t have to pursue anything or work at figuring out how I was going to achieve that. I simply had to allow it to unfold.
To access this state of allowing, the only thing I had to do was be myself! I realized that all those years, all I ever had to do was be myself, without judgment or feeling that I was flawed. At the same time, I understood that at the core, our essence is made of pure love. We are pure love—every single one of us. How can we not be, if we come from the Whole and return to it? I knew that realizing this meant never being afraid of who we are. Therefore, being love and being our true self is one and the same thing!
As I experienced my biggest revelation, it felt like a bolt of lightning. I understood that merely by being the love I truly am, I would heal both myself and others. I’d never understood this before, yet it seemed so obvious. If we’re all One, all facets of the same Whole, which is unconditional love, then of course who we are is love! I knew that was really the only purpose of life: to be our self, live our truth, and be the love that we are.
As though to confirm my realization, I became aware of both my father and Soni communicating to me: Now that you know the truth of who you really are, go back and live your life fearlessly!