The colors are beyond description, the colors here are so drab by

comparison... In this place I saw people that I knew had died.

There were no words spoken, but it was as if I knew what they

were thinking, and at the same time I knew that they knew what

I was thinking 28

5. Different Realms

In the bardo of becoming, as well as many other kinds of

visions, the mental body will see visions and signs of different

realms. A small percentage of those who have survived a neardeath

experience report visions of inner worlds, of paradises,

cities of light, with transcendental music.

One woman told Raymond Moody:

Off in the distance ... I could see a city. There were buildings—

separate buildings. They were gleaming, bright. People were

happy in there. There was sparkling water, fountains ... a city

of light I guess would be the way to say it... It was wonderful.

There was beautiful music. Everything was just glowing, wonderful

... But if I had entered into this, I think I would never have

returned... I was told that if I went there I couldn't go back ...

that the decision was mine. 29

Another person told Margot Grey:

/ seemed to find myself in what appeared to be some type of structure

or building, but there were no walls that I can remember.

There was only this all-pervading beautiful golden light... I

noticed about me many people that seemed to be walking or

milling about; they didn't even appear to walk, but seemed somehow

to glide. I didn't feel apart from them at all; one of the feelings

I remember most about them was the feeling of unity, of being

totally a part of everything around me and about me. 30

6. Hellish Visions

Not all descriptions in the near-death experience, however,

are positive, as you would expect from what we have spoken

of in the Tibetan teachings. Some people report terrifying

experiences of fear, panic, loneliness, desolation, and gloom,

vividly reminiscent of the descriptions of the bardo of becoming.

One person reported by Margot Grey spoke of being

sucked into "a vast black vortex like a whirlpool," and those

who have negative experiences tend to feel, rather like those

about to be reborn in lower realms in the bardo of becoming,

that they are traveling downward instead of upward:

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