NOTE: The following is an excerpt from Rev. John M. Kohlenberger's book, "Journey Beyond De-Light" ... to be published in 2017.
Chapter 3 – Baptism
Martin’s Baptism before her Graduation in to the Greater Light of Creation
While there are those rooted in religious orthodoxy that believe that for one’s soul to be “saved” the person must be baptized in a church, in the name of Jesus who became the Christ, this idea is contrary to a Creator that made all things and yet makes ALL things possible (Matthew 19:26). So, I am about to disclose a story of a spiritual baptism, that I believe is beyond what any church or clergyman can offer, for it was not of this world and yet contains its own truth and reality.
So, 24 hours before what I call Martine’s apocalypse and Graduation, I had an SNDE. What is an SNDE, you ask? Well I didn’t know either until about 6 months after my wife’s spiritual baptism and apocalypse, which you can read more about in the next chapters.
You may have heard of, or even if you or a friend who had, a near death experience. The acronym for this is “NDE”. But if it is shared by others, sometimes in the room at the time of a loved ones passing, or in my case just prior to my wife’s complete letting go, it is called a shared near death experience, designated by the acronym “SNDE”.
In my case, our SNDE happened about 24 hours before Martine took her final breath, as I was asleep at home. And, it came to me in the form of a vision or a dream, in the early morning hours.
It all started as I slowly became aware of what seemed to be a flashing light, or lights. Actually, this flashing had been going on for some time, but I finally realized that I was not in limbo and this flashing suddenly seemed like something that I felt I should pay attention to and investigate.
So, what was this flashing light about? The more I focused, I began to see many sources of light. Then it seemed that these were water droplets flashing light through them as they went through the air and splashed. They were splashing as the result of a small waterfall which was part of a stream. And, then, I wondered where the stream that fed this waterfall came from and as I looked up and to the left, there it was! More water flowing. And to my right, the stream flowed downward, toward a lake, with rocks and trees on its shore, and even bigger waterfalls feeding directly into it, further away!
I thought, “Wow, who would believe that flashing lights could lead to such a fantastically beautiful and peaceful scene?” And the colors were vibrant … WITH LIFE! Everything was alive! I could feel the life in everything, almost as if I was a part of it all. Not only were the trees alive, but the rocks, the dirt, and even the sky was alive. And there were mountains in the distance, also seemingly full of life. I could feel life everywhere! Not only that, but I could not only see a tree, but I could also know what was on the other side of it, almost like I could see through it and see it at the same time! This was a magical place, by anybody’s account. As I write this, I believe that some have called this the “Borderland”, between what we believe heaven to be and our earthly realities.
To my left were the large waterfalls, but to my right were some cabins. This place felt like a nice vacation villa, a good place to relax and enjoy life!
At some point, seemingly “later”, I found myself in one of the cabins, that I had seen near the lake (see my watercolor rendering of “Impressionist Border Land”). I was laying on a bed, relaxing and talking with my wife, Martine. We were both relaxed. What we said or talked about, I have no memory of at this point. But, it seems like we must have discussed our relationship together, some of the things that happened and agreed that we had each done the best we knew in every moment. Thus, there were no regrets and there was nothing to hold her back from moving on, if she wished and I could go on without her at my side physically, as we both knew that we were in each other’s hearts and thus neither of us would ever be totally alone.
SNDE Impressionist Borderland (watercolor)
Impressionist Borderland (watercolor)
About a week after my former wife’s passing, a lady that I attended a science class with told me, as we walked out the classroom door together, “They say that it’s like the Colorado River. You can diver some water, but you can’t move the whole river”. In that moment, I knew that she was giving me a message about Martine’s passing and that as a healer, I could divert some of her life force, as indicated when I touched her feet and she opened her eyes, but I could not keep her from completing her life plan, which in the end, for everybody, includes a releasing of the limiting thoughts of living in a physical world with a physical body.
Another phrase I remember from that this lady told me was, “She did not want to hold you back, nor you to hold her back”. And as we talked, it seemed to me that there are plans we have no idea of; plans for our best good and growth, and as part of aa greater plan, this event was something to help me grow in love.
As in the traditions of the early churches, Martine had to undress and be baptized, or “sealed” into a new way of life. To early Christians, Essenes and Gnostics this cleansing ceremony of baptism symbolized their liberation from their old way of life and living so that they may graduate into a new, better life of spiritual freedom. So it was that Martine undressed, in order to take a shower and put on her new clothes, or put on her new countenance so she could live a new life at a higher level! Though she was previously baptized in the Roman Catholic church, this was her real and spiritual baptism. In the old traditions, she could now receive the Eucharist. The Christian Gnostics thought of this Eucharist as receiving the “gnosis” or knowing of The Father-God, within. I shall reveal how this “gnosis” would reveal itself in a later chapter as one realizes that the One Creator God lives within each one of us, and we within Him, Her, It or Them; as Jesus did.
So, back to the SNDE. After we exchanged whatever words and feelings we needed to, Martine said, “I’ve got to take my shower now, so I can change and go”. In earthly life, this would have been quite typical of Martine, to take a shower before getting dressed to go someplace important. So, in the context of this dream or vision, everything seemed quite natural and acceptable. But, haven’t you noticed that occurrences in your dream world are much less restricted or structured than your physical life?
After coming out of her shower, Martine’s body had the shape and look of her human form (now completely healed and able to move without pain), but it was now all white; purified as she, as a soul, had now released the bonds and limitations of this physical world. She was now ready to “go” where ever it was that she needed to go! I now feel that her “shower of purification” was her spiritual baptism to release the old life, so she would be “initiated” and could move on to a new one. She was releasing this physical life, world and body, to go on to greater things; in her next grandest adventure. At this point she was about to remember (put her members back together so she could become whole, or “holy”) a fuller awareness of who she really is as a portion of Creator and creation, as she becomes more aware of the spiritual worlds that exist in higher vibrational attunements.
Yes, I believe that these greater realities are “above us”; above us in vibrational frequency, but as they are no longer physical, they are no longer of this earth, including not in the sky, above us. Thus our attunement with our dearly departed loved ones and favorite animals, is a matter of matching frequencies; which, whether you realize it or not, is the way you tune your radio or TV to get a particular program or talk to a particular person on your cell phone. This is a new awareness for our society and religions to come to, as science is just now learning to look at our universe with different frequencies, some higher and some lower, and each different view reveals something new. In my opinion, the religions need to broaden their view too, so that they may discover whole new worlds of opportunity.
I believe that this borderland that I was in at this point is somewhere between “here” and some higher view, plain or vibrational realm.
In order to become aware of this borderland, one needed to let go of expectations. And in the process you may discoverUnconditional Love
As we relax and attune to the higher vibrations of consciousness, through meditation and/or prayer, we may begin to approach an awareness of this land of transition. And with practice, we may even transcend this world based on the 4 dimensions of space and time, and venture beyond the limitations imposed by our belief in the limitations of these 4 “dimensions”.
Some call this the “fifth dimensional world”, but it seems to me, from my experiences, that in that world reality, it must be dimensionless, without any dimensions. If we added one more, we would only restrict us even more! And, what would be the point of that?
In the SNDE reality that I saw Martine in, before she completely left her body and the realities of this world, certainly had a reality, as everything I saw had shape, color and form, but as everything was alive, it seemed timeless, and so it seemed that these attributes were not any kind of restriction upon the “existence” of these lakes, trees, rocks, hills or even the cabin in which we met.
Thus, I must conclude that there are many “realities”, even in this world, for each of us contains our own. So, while yours may not be mine, they do both exist, within their own realm of truths. Once we realize this, we can choose to fight to change each other, which is what may people in this world has been doing for far too long, or we can choose to lovingly accept each other as the creations, of God-Goddess that we truly are.
And to have and make this choice, which ever one we chose, now makes us creators of our own lives!
Like in this life, each person’s afterlife, or everlasting life, journey is unique. The book of Revelations in the New Testament was written by a very scared person that apparently did not believe in a loving God. Thus, I say, a Good News “Gospel” it is not, as the word “gospel” in Greek means “good news”. But it scares a lot of people into adopting the Christian beliefs, which served the purposes of the proto-orthodox and Orthodox Church Fathers that wanted to grow the Roman Orthodox Religion and its power.
For those who are fearing what may be ahead, I will give a few brief examples of people I know or have known who were approaching "death" ... or their afterlife.
My former wife’s brother-in-law loved basketball so much that even as he lay in bed dying of cancer, he would dream of playing basketball with friends. And after his transition out of this reality, he was reported, by a world renowned medium, to be spending much of his time playing basketball. This is all possible because our souls, who we really are, re not limited to this life or physicality as we know it on this earth. We are multidimensional energy posing as human beings living live on earth.
My former wife spent her last days in hospice, in an older former Spanish style home with a view of a hedge outside the window of her bedroom. At the time it felt like this is the kind of place she would have chosen, consciously, if she could. So, the view of nature outside her window made a very natural model foe what she showed me as she was making her way out of this reality, on to her next grandest adventure, which was very much in nature, with a hedge outside her door. (see my illustrations of these situations in the next chapter)
And lastly, a hospice patient I am currently working with: when he is not participating in this reality, he has been out golfing, meeting my brother and most recently fishing. His description of having fun fishing is that the stream is just outside the building his body is laying in. The people are all friendly, “nobody fights with anybody else” and there are plenty of fish. If you want some you can just ask. He even told his wife and myself that he even threw some of the smaller fish back, as there were more where those came from, reminding me of the “loaves and fishes” story in the New Testament, which I now believe is, and thus take as, a metaphor for the abundance of spirit and creation, beyond this physical world. There are no limits! “With God ALL things are possible”.
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