NHNE Near-Death Experience Network

Exploring all aspects of near-death experiences (and related phenomena).

"You should not be doing this killing. Your mission is to help others and to protect them."

This NDE is from the same paper on the NDERF site I mentioned previously, "We Are ALL Loved." It is one that will stay with you, for the war crime (as it looks to me) reported, for the horrific initial part of the NDE, for the forgiving love at the end, and for the subsequent turnaround in the man's life.

* * * * *

Back in 1969, I was in Vietnam doing my patriotic duty and teaching others how to do theirs. I was a Green Beret trainer in hand to hand combat in guerrilla warfare. I felt the caring [killing?] of enemy soldiers was like a giant video or chess game. I gave no thought at all to the fact that the enemy really had personalities, names, parents, wives, children complete with their own individual fears, goals, hopes and dreams. It just wasn’t anything I gave any thought to. They were just numbers to me. High kill numbers were good the higher the better. A conscience didn’t pay off in the military, high kill numbers did.

I was mean, tough, and macho. I could use every part of my body to kill. I was a trainer of such men as well. I’d been a bit too cocky one day and almost paid the ultimate price. I was caught off guard and was taken out by a mortar shell. I floated above my body and didn’t feel any pain.

[. . .] I felt a sucking sensation downward and was suddenly in a trench [in his NDE]. This trench was filled with blood, guts and body parts. It had a consistency of thick beef stew. To make matters worse, I saw Asian looking men, women and even little children standing on both banks of this trench. They were pointing at me screaming. They grabbed at me as I sloshed and struggled my way through the revolting smelling mess toward a distant spot of light. These people on the banks were missing parts of their faces, bodies and limbs. A mother was holding her infant, and both of them had bullet holes in their faces. Even though they were speaking Vietnamese, I could tell that they were screaming that I was in some way responsible for their condition and their deaths. They were so horribly frightening that I tried to stay focused only on the light. I felt that if I could just reach the light I would be safe. None of these dismembered people on the banks ever touched me, but I felt that I was running a gauntlet anyway.

One of the most haunting memories of this torturous journey was of a six year old thin little girl I had referred to as Miss Piglet (due to the fact that she always hung around begging for food and candy and was filthy). She showed up at our camp one day and had something concealed in a bag slung over her shoulder. She looked as if she was about to do something that she knew she should not be doing. I carefully drew a bead on her from about 50 feet away and thought, "If she pulls out anything suspicious she is history". I saw her reach into her bag and pull out something that looked like a grenade. I thought "She has a grenade in that bag and has been sent to blow up my guys!" I then blew off the top of her head with a single shot. Her brother later told some of the other guys that she had been trying to find an American who would hide a puppy that she had become attached to, and to save it from becoming part of the family dinner that evening. Several of the guys had criticized me for reacting too quickly in firing, when in fact I had only seen the head of the black puppy from a distance and thought it was a grenade. I shrugged it off in my usual manner saying "She was an unfortunate victim of war". One of the people on the banks of the river of blood and guts was this little Vietnamese girl. She was screaming at me with what was left of her face. I was horrified and filled with guilt.

After I’ve gone through what seemed like miles of this trench, I heard my deceased best friend’s voice from high school telling me that I can do it. I can make it. I knew he was giving me encouragement. The encouragement I needed to make it to the light.

My friend, Ed, had died one and a half years ago in a hunting accident. Yet here he was suddenly helping me out of the trench and hugging me warmly. I felt tremendous relief, love and acceptance. Tears of joy ran down both of our faces. "Hey man" he said, “I know that was rough. But you needed it, you were getting just a little bit too callous and that isn’t like you. It just wasn’t the Keith I knew when we played football together and hung around in high school.” I took a good look around and was in awe by the incredible beauty of the place of where we both stood. It was like a meadow like a sparkling stream running through it. The colors were much more vivid than on earth. I noticed for the first time that Ed was glowing, and I looked at my own arms and they glowed slightly too. He said to me, "you are not doing the right thing, you should not be doing this killing. Your mission is to help others and to protect them. You will learn more about your mission as you go along, but for now you need to go back. This is your home and you will return, but for now you need to go back and discover your mission in full." As soon as he said that I felt a pop and was instantly in pain and lying in a hospital bed.

[. . .] Since my Vietnam experience, I had felt a compelling protective need toward women and children. I even help out by volunteering to build shelters for abused and displaced women and their children. I have had some paranormal experiences since then but we will save that for a later time. I hope that this NDE will shed some light on your research.

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Wow. Another outstanding story. There is something about these stories that is food for the soul. Everyone should read them...

That was extremely powerful. It goes to show that how we treat each other is the only thing that matters.

When I was a soldier, we plotted and schemed about killing others...
The wars we planned are ongoing even to this day... After my NDE, 
I could see there were human.beings in all the collateral damage... We
were not heroes at all.... Killing someone would be like cutting off
my own arm as we all a part of a whole. Killing the opponent is only
half the story... but the human beings who are just at the wrong place at the wrong time...
make war an impossible game.... They should make a place where those who 
want to play war can go to play general and soldier.... Where children will
not get in the way of their fantasies.... I know when I was young, I dreamed 
of bombing the Kremlin. Perhaps some boys like me are just hard wired to
be killers.... Maybe it is okay to be that way? But they should make rules that never let 
those that don't include letting those who don't want to play war getting in the 
way of their fun. 
Let them all, those who want to play war, go and fight somewhere away
from those who don't until there are none left who do. This might take a few generations 
To do but I hope one day there will be no more war... In the the last
AGes of the world... I saw a world full of light... There were no wars... Perhaps we
are the souls who wanted the soap opera experience of living in a war torn 

Rudi, that is a fascinating idea--to have a special place where those who need to fight can "play war" without any collateral damage. I'd be interested to hear more about it.

I'd also be interested to hear more about the "world full of light" you witnessed, that you mention at the end, where there are no wars. Have you written up what you saw in detail?

Robert, the part about the earth turning bright is possibly in the last third of the interview...fast forward past the first two hours of the interview into the third hour.  I'm fairly sure that's where you'll find where Rudi said he saw the earth get brighter during his NDE.  Here is the archive recording to that show:

Interesting Rudi, glad to read your post... have come to join you and Journey.  Very glad to be here.  I will be awaitinng for your next Internet radio show.



Hi Robert,

I don't know if you will see this comment since your original post was so long ago, but this story really hit me hard. It's a more vivid description of a life review, hellish, really. And yet it didn't frighten me because I understand he had to face the darkness in order to turn it over to the light and be free of it. The constant here is infinite love and forgiveness.  I also appreciate how this story points out that when I hurt my fellow beings, I hurt myself because we are all part of the same whole. Thanks for posting it.

Just an amazing NDE, just amazing.

Thank you for sharing


I came to the same conclusions, from life review, Robert.
Ultimately, we are preparing to play on better playgrounds, but we need to
tested in fire down here before moving on. This world of war, tears and pain is not our home but rather a space to temper our souls... Why send us back, otherwise? Why do you think you were sent back? Sometimes,
even knowing what I know, I fail to what I know is the way to the light... I just wish I could live up to who I want to be but even when I was thee... Those times when I failed to be light... were just not that important... The loving parts popped out as what shined as opposed to my failures... I keep thinking we should do our best but failing... not beat ourselves up forever... I never killed anyone but I was involved in the planning and execution of wars we are in today... I remember, they said we were going to be doing a lesser evil to prevent a greater evil... But after my NDE, it was clear that their lesser evil was still evil... And not worthy of entering in... But,,, even that part of my life is not some sort of end of the line... We should not hold a grudge against others... Yes... Especially enough to kill, Mai. Or torture... But to Not even hold a grudge against ourselves... Do work on it... I read your message regularly... It is an important reminder...
There are so many other ways to be...

Lots of soldiers kill themselves, rather than move on from their killing... I have seen and met several of those former soldiers, who can hardly live in their own bodies... knowing what they have done... Even if they believe their cause was just... But in the end... They know... Since dying, I never was much for begging god to forgive me... It is wasted breath... We know we were wrong... But move on and light to the work in whatever way we can... I struggle... With not forgiving myself more than anything as it keeps me from moving on...

I hope those soldiers get the same message that you and I know... But then
don't take the old eye for an eye approach to killing themselves for
their own killing...

". . . .knowing what I know, I fail to what I know is the way to the light... I just wish I could live up to who I want to be. . . ." reminds me of the following from a fairly familiar book:

"So I find it to be a law that when I want to do good, evil lies close at hand.  For I delight in the law of God in my inmost self, but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind, making me captive. . . .  Who will rescue me. . . ?"  taken from The Epistle to the Church at Rome;  chapter 7;  verse 21-24

Saint Paul uses different God-language, but I think he is communicating a similar frustration as have you in the above excerpt from your response to Robert.

True that...

In that landmine filled book, there are some beautiful gems...

I certainly agree.  The same guy, this guy named Paul, wrote some pretty incongruent stuff.  Others, of course, did as well.


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