I wanted to say a little more about the ideas I mentioned in my recent poem (Driving a Human Chevy). The concept of a “human Chevy” may seem weird, but bear with me.
Over the last year, I’ve read a few hundred accounts of near-death experiences, mostly on one website in particular (Iands.org). An NDE is when a person has been declared dead for a period of time, but eventually “comes back”, generally with a story of extraordinary experiences while “dead”. Some people say NDEs are just caused by activity in the brain under the effects of drugs or lack of oxygen; however, it is common for them to occur even when monitors indicate a complete lack of electrical activity in the brain.
No two NDE reports are exactly alike, but there are similarities. In reading these stories, two things strike me as most compelling. The first is that almost all experiencers report being told that we come into this life (or are sent?) with a purpose to fulfill or something important to learn, though they usually aren’t told what that purpose is or exactly what we’re supposed to learn. Wouldn’t life be so much more meaningful -though not necessarily easier- if this was made clear to us much earlier in life? More on that later.
NDEs also seem to support the idea that there is a part of us (a soul?) that continues to exist after our physical death. From this comes my idea that during our time in this world, we are “other-worldly” aliens piloting a vehicle that happens to be in the form of a human being (or animals?).
Imagine you’re driving an army tank that is fully enclosed, no windows to the outside world at all. The only way you can perceive and interact with the outside is via electronic sensors and devices – cameras to see, microphones for hearing, intake pipes for taking on fuel and oil, exhaust pipes to …. well, you get the idea. 😉 The quality of interaction with the outside world is constrained by how well these various systems work.
It’s the same with our bodies, only our alien selves are much more tightly integrated with the vehicles we’re in. Rather than a tank, a better analogy might be the exoskeletons being developed in our medical and military laboratories. Our vehicle is so intertwined with our ‘selves’ that it’s hard to tell where one stops and the other begins. It seems to take the imminent complete failure of the earthly vehicle for a separation to occur (rather like some of us in this world who have an inordinate love for our favorite cars and trucks!).
We encounter people through the course of our lives, and we’re often tempted to stick a label on them -tall/short, fat/skinny, (un-)attractive, etc.- based on their appearance. But according to my theory (& that’s really all it is), we’re actually just commenting on what car they got stuck driving. Not everyone gets a sports car when they go to the rental shop; sometimes they get stuck with a less-than-exciting sedan. A Ferrari or a Llamborghini is quite sexy, sleek, and fast. Unfortunately, I am none of those things, so let’s just say I’m a Chevy Cavalier.
Now, about our purpose – let me just say right off that I’m clueless. Many is the time that I’ve railed in frustration at the Great Creator of the Universe (God, Allah, Zeus, whoever): “How can I accomplish my mission in this life if you won’t tell me what the HELL it is?!?” And of course, HE/SHE/IT chooses to ignore my question, since I obviously was so rude in asking.
If it’s so darned important that we remain on this earth long enough to finish our “mission”, why would it be so obscured from us? If we do indeed even have one, perhaps it’s hidden from us until we’re ready to meet the challenges inherent in carrying it out – both because we might be intimidated by its demands and because we might otherwise attempt the mission before we’re ready, virtually ensuring that we will fail.
On the other hand, it might turn out that I personally have no more important role in this existence than to serve as a catalyst to impel someone else to action, via the mysterious & awesome power of The Butterfly Effect (a very interesting idea, if you haven’t heard of it before).
Again, this whole post is mostly pure speculation on my part. Like the rest of my fellow travelers, I don’t expect to know the ultimate truth until I have my own death experience – near or final.