by Karen Frazier, Managing Editor
I don’t know how many times I’ve heard it from people. A brush with the afterlife in some form has set them on a lifetime search for answers – or changed their lives completely.
My own story, which I have recounted numerous times, set me on the path. If you read my bio for Paranormal Underground, you’ll see. It says something along the lines of “living in a haunted WWII era apartment set Karen on a lifelong search for answers” or something very similar.
It was my first recognizable brush with the afterlife. As frightening as it was at the time, (and it was spooky to have an invisible presence whispering in my ear and sitting on my bed), it was also heady. How could it be anything but? If what I encountered was indeed a ghost, the implications about what happens when we die were huge.
It took me nearly 20 years to process those initial experiences and see them for what they implied. And now, I seek them out.
Curiosity and inquiry is part of the package for me, but it isn’t the whole enchilada. There’s more to it than just wanting to know. There’s also a search for belief involved, as well as learning to trust my inner guidance and impressions. It’s all wrapped up into one tasty taco that may contain the answers to my very nature. I’m good with that.
A first brush with the afterlife can be a powerful thing. Whether you encounter a ghost, have verifiable memories of a past life or have a near-death experience, how can you ever look at the world in quite the same way again?
For me, there was before and after. And my view of the world – it changed. Almost instantaneously, although it took me years to recognize the profound changes that it had affected.
If we know for certain that our souls go on and survive our physical bodies, does it change how you feel about your place in the universe? It does for me.
I’ve seen it time after time with the people I’ve talked to.
Jeff Keene, who has recall of many past lives (read about him in our September 2008 issue), was a good guy before he started to remember. He was a firefighter who saved lives. That was before. After? His life is on an entirely different path. He is a man with a message – “Love never dies.” He is a changed man who is sharing his story and his message. He is touching lives.
Zak Bagans life changed forever because something sat on his back and then faced him down at the corner of his bed. It scared him, sure. But it changed him. It became his life’s purpose. And he’s become pretty successful at it pretty quickly.
My good friend, Etta, had a near-death experience while fighting breast cancer several years ago. It changed her profoundly. It removed any fear she had of death in a deep and meaningful way.
Look at the paintings of an artist such as Hieronymus Bosch. Little is known about Bosch, and yet looking at much of his art, one wonders at his muse. Did he come face to face with the afterlife in such a way that it sparked the fire of creativity behind such paintings as the Ascent into the Empyrian?
Coming face to face with the afterlife changes a person deeply and profoundly. It infuses them with a trust and a knowing that they didn’t have before. One experience can turn skeptics into believers. It can turn the fearful into the serene. It can turn the angry into the peaceful. It can turn sinners into saints.
As we intellectualize, attempt to explain, attempt to debunk and whack scientific terms about, the bottom line is this. For those who have come face to face with the afterlife, it doesn’t matter what we do or think. They know – and nothing can ever take that away from them.
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