My Missing 5 Minutes
(The following incident may be of value in understanding existence)
by Ray Morose
– How it began –
On 18 November, 2008, I went to the Lismore Base hospital for a popliteal aneurysm bypass in my left leg. I never made it to the operating theatre because the anesthetist that was giving me a lumber/spinal block killed me.
– Hospital discharge referral read as follows –
Unfortunately, Raymond’s operation could not be performed as pre-operatively, bupivacaine was accidentally injected intravasularly, resulting in an asystolic arrest. He was resuscitated in 5 minutes.
– What happened was –
Normally lumber/spinal blocks do not take much time. After the two injections, one simply waits until the numbness sets in to be moved into the operating theatre. I was lying on my side with the anesthetist at my back administering the injections and a male nurse was facing me on the other side. As I was watching the male nurse, he suddenly disappeared. I went from seeing him standing in front of me to what can best be described as being in an ‘awareness disconnect bubble’.
That transition occurred instantaneously. One second I was looking at the male nurse and the next second I was in this, ‘awareness disconnect bubble’. Firstly, I refer to it as a bubble, because it felt contained or restricted. Hence, the feeling of being in a bubble, but of course there was no bubble, just containment, as I could not move beyond it. My first thought was ‘shit, I’m dead’. Then I noticed the background, or what I was submerged within. The environment was of a blue/grey color and appeared to be perforated with an endless number of very small and dim or subdued sparkles: difficult to describe. Because consciousness is what I write about, my second thought was ‘can I see myself’, and of course, I could not. The thought made me aware of the absolute purity/clarity of that awareness. This is also difficult to describe, as it was the normal awareness one uses in daily life, but a more clearly defined and concentrated version of that normal awareness: experienced as being personally absolute. Meaning, it is what it is, and nothing can alter or change what it is. Naturally, I could not see myself, as my ‘self’ (awareness/consciousness) was what was seeing. Simultaneously, with that thought, I recognized that I could know; meaning that somehow, I was still connected to the mind as I could think and thinking is a biological function of the brain. Therefore, I knew I was somehow still ‘alive’, but could not do anything with that ‘aliveness’ as I was technically dead and was experiencing nothing outside my ‘awareness bubble’.
At this juncture, I notice a single row of lights, with each light being similar to the illumination that a small torch (flashlight) would produce. It began as one single light then a black space, then two lights clumped together, and then another black space, then three light clumped together and another black space. And on and on it went. I became entranced by the sequential numbering of these ‘clumped lights’ and began to follow the sequence until I got to around number 15 and then something compelled me to look back to the beginning of this row of lights. Upon turning my vision back to the beginning, I noticed a pair of translucent crossed hands moving up and down over the first of these sets of lights. I thought, ‘they are using CPR to revive me’. But then I noticed how dim the those first few sets of lights appeared as compared to the sets of lights from the 15th set onwards appeared, and I thought, ‘no, he won’t make it’ as the illumination was not very powerful as compared to the increasing illumination as the sets of lights increased. However, for some reason I was also drawn back to the beginning of those sets of lights. When I arrived at around number 5, I was absolutely certain that whoever was doing the CPR would not succeed as the closer I got to the first set, with the pair of translucent crossed hands over it, the greater the dimness density increased, creating the feeling the other direction that contained more light was a better option. But, I was still inexplicably drawn toward the first set with the moving translucent hands. Then just as I arrived at the first light, my (biological) eyes opened and became aware that I was back in the body. The first thing I did, with great effort as it felt like lead, was lift my right hand and point to a tube sticking out of my mouth. I could not talk, or did not have the energy to talk, but I really wanted that tube out of my mouth so I could breathe. My next awareness is of waking up in intensive care unit.
– Upon reflection –
This entire episode took 5 minutes, in which time CPR was continually applied, creating a ‘slow’ pulse that both kept me alive and I assume move around whatever injected pharmacological agents were used to neutralize the effects of the block that shut the heart down. Later, I began to ponder what these sequential lights meant. First, the increased illumination moving outward was greater because the number of lights were greater, making the ‘area’ around the first sets of lights appear to be dimmer. Meaning, just because the lights were greater, moving outward, does not imply ‘moving to a greater light’ as that increased illumination may impart. Secondly, the pair of moving up/down ‘translucent crossed hands’ at the beginning of the series of lights is a clue to understand what those lights mean: they where the number of compressions taking place. With each compression, a light was added to indicate its number, creating a row or series of lights. Meaning, the mind was still receiving information from the body, but that information could not be translated into understanding, because the knower of consciousness was ‘disconnected’ from the body. Therefore, the knower could not know what was occurring to the body. However, consciousness could receive information through its observer, as the observer is the visual aspect of consciousness. That is what occurred, as I witnessed the background, the lights, and the ‘translucent hands’, which is the mind visually demonstrating what it cannot explain in any other way as its knower is not present to understand those occurrences as it was locked with its ‘awareness disconnect bubble’.
– What is the meaning of this ‘awareness disconnect’?-
1- The observer-knower forms the two self-referencing aspects of consciousness (awareness) that provide the foundation for your existence, but it is the biological mind that provides all the information to make it work. This ‘little’ episode in my life has confirmed those self-referencing aspects. For all the pain (broken and cracked ribs from the CPR) and suffering it has caused it also experientially confirmed what could only be confirmed following the death of the body. I was technically dead for 5 minutes and those minutes were sufficient to experience the separated absoluteness of consciousness, confirming its indestructibility. How you appreciate or understand the terminology of ‘absoluteness’ may be different from how I experience that term. However, when the human body dies, the terminology of ‘absoluteness’ will be held in common, confirming our non-biological heritage and our commonality.
2- The ‘bubble’ that I was confined within felt contained. There was no form (body), just pure awareness as observer-knower of consciousness. The disconnected aspect of that containment is one of the more difficult aspects of this experience to define. Its ‘bubble’ felt as a temporary position, sort of holding pattern, waiting to see what would happen: to stay or move on. However, what it did expose was, when consciousness is disconnected from the body, everything in the world, and I mean everything, simply evaporates as if it never existed. There is simply no memory-connection to an earthly existence. When consciousness is disconnected from the body, apparently, all of its earthly connection memory goes. As alarming as that may appear, it is also liberating, as consciousness does appear to subliminally have access to information that ‘exposes what it is’, which allows one to be aware that one is indeed aware, which is experiencing subliminal self-awareness. That disconnected ‘bubble’ was experienced as knowing and seeing (observation) as pure awareness, or awareness of that awareness, but it was also free or liberated from all earthly connections (memory) making it exceedingly peaceful. However, as it was ‘somewhere in-between here and there’ it was also totally isolated or alone: there were no other entities and no noticeable environment other than the blue-gray background and the series of lights.
3- Attempting to describe the clarity of that isolated and/or disconnected subliminal self-awareness ‘bubble’ is also trying, as there is no earthly experience to compare it with. The clarity contains an unfettered expansive-freedom that defies comparative description. That internal vision of oneself (subliminal self-awareness) reveals a sense of absolute purity (‘stainless’ transparency), which is the core or essence of existence. Meaning, that is what we fundamentally all are. The mind is what adds spirit-value to the core-essence or detracts from it, which is a free will decision bringing individual consciousness into permanence or making it a short-term acquisition.
4- Experienced in isolation, that awareness ‘bubble’ was a little concerning and thought I would sit down have a think about it. However, the moment I had that thought, I realized I could not sit down, as there was nothing to sit down with and nothing to sit upon. The situation became quite humorous and the concern dissipated It was at this time that I was beginning to be drawn back to the first of those ‘lights’, which eventually brought me back to experiencing my body and where that body was located. It was an interesting experience that confirmed some of the aspects that I write about: not all, but most of them. The rest may have to wait until the disconnection is permanent. Until then my ‘missing 5 minutes’ will have to suffice.
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