Betty Eadie's Near-Death
Betty Eadie book
by the Light
was first published, it quickly
became a New York Times bestseller
and was the first of many "by
books published about the NDE. Eadie
followed up her bestseller with
Visit her website at
for more information about her.
Betty's NDE testimony is one of
the most detailed and most profound
testimony ever documented in my
opinion. "Embraced" was certainly
the most popular and important book
about the NDE since Raymond Moody's
ground-breaking book "Life After
Life" book was published in 1975.
The following excerpts are from
Betty Eadie's New York Times bestseller,
by the Light,
reprinted by permission.
On November 18, 1973,
Betty Eadie succumbed to complications due to a
partial-hysterectomy surgery and had a near-death
experience. Afterwards, Betty suffered with depression
so painful was her separation from the light of
love - she experienced during her moments of clinical
death. Twenty years later, after sharing her story
with family and friends, and with critically ill
cancer patients, Betty was urged to write her experience
so that a wider audience might share its beauty.
Embraced by the Light was published by a small
press out of Carson City, Nevada. Embraced
became a permanent fixture on the New York Times
Bestsellers list, spending more than a year at number
leaves her body through her chest and floats above
her bed. Three hooded monk-like beings appear whom
she identifies to be her guardian angels. They tell
her that they have been with her for "eternities"
and that she died prematurely. Concerned about her
family that she left behind, she travels in spirit
to her home to see them; but she discovers that
she cannot be seen by them. Betty then returns to
her body where her guardian angels are waiting for
[The following is in
Betty's own words.]
I saw a pinpoint of light
in the distance. The black mass around me began
to take on more of the shape of a tunnel, and I
felt myself traveling through it at an even greater
speed, rushing toward the light. I was instinctively
attracted to it, although again, I felt that others
might not be. As I approached it, I noticed the
figure of a man standing in it, with the light radiating
all around him. As I got closer the light became
brilliant - brilliant beyond any description, far
more brilliant than the sun - and I knew that no
earthly eyes in their natural state could look upon
this light without being destroyed. Only spiritual
eyes could endure it - and appreciate it. As I drew
closer I began to stand upright.
I saw that the light immediately
around him was golden, as if his whole body had
a golden halo around it, and I could see that the
golden halo burst out from around him and spread
into a brilliant, magnificent whiteness that extended
out for some distance. I felt his light blending
into mine, literally, and I felt my light being
drawn to his. It was as if there were two lamps
in a room, both shining, their light merging together.
It's hard to tell where one light ends and the other
begins; they just become one light. Although his
light was much brighter than my own, I was aware
that my light, too, illuminated us. And as our lights
merged, I felt as if I had stepped into his countenance,
and I felt an utter explosion of love.
It was the most unconditional
love I have ever felt, and as I saw his arms open
to receive me I went to him and received his complete
embrace and said over and over, "I'm home. I'm home,
I'm finally home." I felt his enormous spirit and
knew that I had always been a part of him, that
in reality I had never been away from him.
And I knew that I was
worthy to be with him, to embrace him. I knew that
he was aware of all my sins and faults, but that
they didn't matter right now. He just wanted to
hold me and share his love with me, and I wanted
to share mine with him.
There was no questioning
who he was, I knew that he was my savior, and friend,
and God. He was Jesus Christ, who had always loved
me, even when I thought he hated me. He was life
itself, love itself, and his love gave me a fullness
of joy, even to overflowing. I knew that I had known
him from the beginning, from long before my Earth
life, because my spirit remembered him.
All my life I had feared
him, and I now saw - I knew - that he was my choicest
friend. Gently, he opened his arms and let me stand
back far enough to look into his eyes, and he said,
"Your death was premature, it is not yet your time."
No words ever spoken have penetrated me more than
these. Until then, I had felt no purpose in life;
I had simply ambled along looking for love and goodness
but never really knowing if my actions were right.
Now, within his words, I felt a mission, a purpose;
I didn't know what it was, but I knew that my life
on Earth had not been meaningless.
It was not yet my time.
My time would come when
my mission, my purpose, my meaning in this life
was accomplished. I had a reason for existing on
Earth. But even though I understood this, my spirit
rebelled. Did this mean I would have to go back?
I said to him, "No, I can never leave you now."
He understood what I meant,
and his love and acceptance for me never wavered.
My thoughts raced on: "Is this Jesus, God, the being
I feared all my life? He is nothing like what I
had thought. He is filled with love."
Then questions began
coming to my mind. I wanted to know why I had died
as I had - not prematurely, but how my spirit had
come to him before the resurrection. I was still
laboring under the teachings and beliefs of my childhood.
His light now began to fill my mind, and my questions
were answered even before I fully asked them. His
light was knowledge. It had power to fill me with
all truth. As I gained confidence and let the light
flow into me, my questions came faster than I thought
possible, and they were just as quickly answered.
And the answers were absolute and complete. In my
fears, I had misinterpreted death, had expected
something that was not so. The grave was never intended
for the spirit - only for the body. I felt no judgment
for having been mistaken. There was just a feeling
that a simple, living truth had replaced my error.
I understood that he was
the son of God, though he himself was also a God,
and that he had chosen from before the creation
of the world to be our savior. I understood, or
rather, I remembered, his role as creator of the
Earth. His mission was to come into the world to
teach love. This knowledge was more like remembering.
Things were coming back to me from long before my
life on Earth, things that had been purposely blocked
from me by a "veil" of forgetfulness at my birth.
As more questions bubbled out of me, I became aware
of his sense of humor. Almost laughing, he suggested
that I slow down, that I could know all I desired.
But I wanted to know everything,
from beginning to end. My curiosity had always been
a torment to my parents and husband - and sometimes
to me - but now it was a blessing, and I was thrilled
with the freedom of learning. I was being taught
by the master teacher! My comprehension was such
that I could understand volumes in an instant. It
was as if I could look at a book and comprehend
it at a glance - as though I could just sit back
while the book revealed itself to me in every detail,
forward and backward, inside and out, every nuance
and possible suggestion.
All in an instant. As
I comprehended one thing, more questions and answers
would come to me, all building on each other, and
interacting as if all truth were intrinsically connected.
The word "omniscient" had never been more meaningful
to me. Knowledge permeated me. In a sense it became
me, and I was amazed at my ability to comprehend
the mysteries of the universe simply by reflecting
I wanted to know why there
were so many churches in the world. Why didn't God
give us only one church, one pure religion? The
answer came to me with the purest of understanding.
Each of us, I was told, is at a different level
of spiritual development and understanding. Each
person is therefore prepared for a different level
of spiritual knowledge. All religions upon the Earth
are necessary because there are people who need
what they teach. People in one religion may not
have a complete understanding of the Lord's gospel
and never will have while in that religion. But
that religion is used as a stepping stone to further
knowledge. Each church fulfills spiritual needs
that perhaps others cannot fill. No one church can
fulfill everybody's needs at every level. As an
individual raises his level of understanding about
God and his own eternal progress, he might feel
discontented with the teachings of his present church
and seek a different philosophy or religion to fill
that void. When this occurs he has reached another
level of understanding and will long for further
truth and knowledge, and for another opportunity
to grow. And at every step of the way, these new
opportunities to learn will be given.
Having received this knowledge,
I knew that we have no right to criticize any church
or religion in any way. They are all precious in
his sight. Very special people with important missions
have been placed in all countries, in all religions,
in every station of life, that they might touch
others. There is a fullness of the gospel, but most
people will not attain it here. In order to grasp
this truth, we need to listen to the Spirit and
let go of our egos.
I wanted to learn the
purpose of life on the Earth. Why are we here? As
I basked in the love of Jesus Christ, I couldn't
imagine why any spirit would voluntarily leave this
wonderful paradise and all it offered - worlds to
explore and ideas to create and knowledge to gain.
Why would anyone want to come here? In answer, I
remembered the creation of the Earth. I actually
experienced it as if it were being reenacted before
my eyes. This was important. Jesus wanted me to
internalize this knowledge. He wanted me to know
how I felt when the creation occurred. And the only
way to do that was for me to view it again and feel
what I had felt before.
All people as spirits
in the pre-mortal world took part in the creation
of the Earth. We were thrilled to be part of it.
We were with God, and we knew that he created us,
that we were his very own children. He was pleased
with our development and was filled with absolute
love for each one of us. Also, Jesus Christ was
there. I understood, to my surprise, that Jesus
was a separate being from God, with his own divine
purpose, and I knew that God was our mutual Father.
My Protestant upbringing had taught me that God
the Father and Jesus Christ were one being. As we
all assembled, the Father explained that coming
to Earth for a time would further our spiritual
growth. Each spirit who was to come to Earth assisted
in planning the conditions on Earth, including the
laws of mortality which would govern us. These included
the laws of physics as we know them, the limitations
of our bodies, and spiritual powers that we would
be able to access. We assisted God in the development
of plants and animal life that would be here. Everything
was created of spirit matter before it was created
physically - solar systems, suns, moons, stars,
planets, life upon the planets, mountains, rivers,
seas, etc. I saw this process, and then, to further
understand it, I was told by the savior that the
spirit creation could be compared to one of our
photographic prints; the spirit creation would be
like a sharp, brilliant print, and the Earth would
be like its dark negative. This Earth is only a
shadow of the beauty and glory of its spirit creation,
but it is what we needed for our growth. It was
important that I understand that we all assisted
in creating our conditions here.
Many times the creative
thoughts we have in this life are the result of
unseen inspiration. Many of our important inventions
and even technological developments were first created
in the spirit by spirit prodigies. Then individuals
on Earth received the inspiration to create these
inventions here. I understood that there is a vital,
dynamic link between the spirit world and mortality,
and that we need the spirits on the other side for
our progression. I also saw that they are very happy
to assist us in any way they can.
I saw that in the pre-mortal
world we knew about and even chose our missions
in life. I understood that our stations in life
are based upon the objectives of those missions.
Through divine knowledge we knew what many of our
tests and experiences would be, and we prepared
accordingly. We bonded with others - family members
and friends - to help us complete our missions.
We needed their help. We came as volunteers, each
eager to learn and experience all that God had created
for us. I knew that each of us who made the decision
to come here was here was a valiant spirit. Even
the least developed among us here was strong and
valiant there. We were given agency to act for ourselves
here. Our own actions determine the course of our
lives, and we can alter or redirect our lives at
any time. I understood that this was crucial; God
made the promise that he wouldn't intervene in our
lives unless we asked him. And then through his
omniscient knowledge he would help us attain our
righteous desires. We were grateful for this ability
to express our free will and to exercise its power.
This would allow each of us to obtain great joy
or to choose that which will bring us sadness. The
choice would be ours through our decisions.
I was actually relieved
to find that the Earth is not our natural home,
that we did not originate here. I was gratified
to see that the Earth is only a temporary place
for our schooling and that sin is not our true nature.
Spiritually, we are at various degrees of light
- which is knowledge - and because of our divine,
spiritual nature we are filled with the desire to
Our earthly selves, however,
are constantly in opposition to our spirits. I saw
how weak the flesh is. But it is persistent. Although
our spirit bodies are full of light, truth, and
love, they must battle constantly to overcome the
flesh, and this strengthens them. Those who are
truly developed will find a perfect harmony between
their flesh and spirits, a harmony that will bless
them with peace and give them the ability to help
As we learn to abide by
the laws of this creation, we learn how to use those
laws to our own good. We learn how to live in harmony
with the creative powers around us. God has given
us individual talents, some more and some less according
to our needs. As we use these talents, we learn
how to work with and eventually understand, the
laws and overcome the limitations of this life.
By understanding these laws we are better able to
serve those around us. Whatever we become here in
mortality is meaningless unless it is done for the
benefit of others. Our gifts and talents are given
to us to help us serve. And in serving others we
Above all, I was shown
that love is supreme. I saw that truly without love
we are nothing. We are here to help each other,
to care for each other, to understand, forgive,
and serve one another. We are here to have love
for every person born on Earth. Their earthly form
might be black, yellow, brown, handsome, ugly, thin,
fat, wealthy, poor, intelligent, or ignorant, but
we are not to judge by these appearances. Each spirit
has the capacity to be filled with love and eternal
energy. At the beginning, each possesses some degree
of light and truth that can be more fully developed.
We cannot measure these things. Only God knows the
heart of man, and only God can judge perfectly.
He knows our spirits; we see only temporary strengths
and weaknesses. Because of our own limitations,
we can seldom look into the heart of man.
I knew that anything we
do to show love is worthwhile: a smile, a word of
encouragement, a small act of sacrifice. We grow
by these actions. Not all people are lovable, but
when we find someone difficult for us to love, it
is often because they remind us of something within
ourselves that we don't like. I learned that we
must love our enemies - let go of anger, hate, envy,
bitterness, and the refusal to forgive. These things
destroy the spirit. We will have to account for
how we treat others.
Upon receiving the plan
of creation, we sang in rejoicing and were filled
with God's love. We were filled with joy as we saw
the growth we would have here on Earth and the joyous
bonds we would create with each other.
Then we watched as the
Earth was created. We watched as our spirit brothers
and sisters entered physical bodies for their turns
upon the Earth, each experiencing the pains and
joys that would help them progress. I distinctly
remember watching the American pioneers crossing
the continent and rejoicing as they endured their
difficult tasks and completed their missions. I
knew that only those who needed that experience
were placed there. I saw the angels rejoicing for
those who endured their trials and succeeded and
grieving for those who failed. I saw that some failed
because of their own weaknesses, and some failed
because of the weaknesses of others. I sensed that
many of us who were not there would not have been
up to the tasks, that we would have made lousy pioneers,
and we would have been the cause of more suffering
for others. Likewise, some of the pioneers and people
from other eras could not have endured the trials
of today. We are where we need to be.
As all of these things
came to me, I understood perfection of the plan.
I saw that we all volunteered for our positions
and stations in the world, and that each of us is
receiving more help than we know. I saw the unconditional
love of God, beyond any earthly love, radiating
from him to all his children. I saw the angels standing
near us, waiting to assist us, rejoicing in our
accomplishments and joys. But above all, I saw Christ,
the Creator and savior of the Earth, my friend,
and the closest friend any of us can have. I seemed
to melt with joy as I was held in his arms and comforted
- home at last. I would give all in my power, all
that I ever was, to be filled with that love again
- to be embraced in the arms of his eternal light.
[The rest of Betty's NDE
will be summarized here.]
Two close friends appear
to Betty whom she knew before she was born. They
embrace and go on a tour of the spirit world. They
enter a large room and see people creating heavenly
garments using heavenly looms of some kind. In another
room, she sees people working with a large computer-like
machine. They enter another room similar to a library.
It is a library of the mind. They go outdoors to
a garden where beautiful mountains and rivers can
be seen in the distance. It is a realm more beautiful
than words can describe.
Beside a waterfall, Betty
observes a magnificent rose and becomes one with
it briefly. A group of people gather around her
for a graduation party. Her guardian angels are
there and they tell her she has died prematurely
and must go back. Wanting to explore the universe,
Betty is escorted by two light beings into the vastness
of space. She travels to other worlds similar to
Earth and with intelligent beings on them. She returns
to the garden and is taken to a place where many
spirits are preparing for life on Earth.
Betty's guides show her
a drunken man lying on the sidewalk and ask her
what she sees. Betty sees only a drunk wallowing
in his own filth. Her guides show her who the man
really is. They reveal to her the man is filled
with light and love and is greatly admired in the
spirit world for being a reminder to people of the
need to help others.
shown the Earth as it appears in space. She is shown
how prayers shoot like beacon lights from the Earth.
She sees angels rushing around answering these prayers.
Betty is observing all of this while in the garden.
She is led
from the garden and into a large building before
a "Council of Elders" consisting of 12 men and Jesus.
Here, she is again told her death was premature
and she must return to Earth. Jesus shows her life
in review in the form of well-defined holograms.
Jesus comforts her when she sees the negative aspects
of her life and begins to judge herself too harshly.
life review, she is told her mission in life is
not complete and must return. Betty steadfastly
refuses. Jesus decides to reveal Betty's mission
in life with the condition that if she decides to
return to Earth, the memory of her mission will
be removed. She agrees to this and is shown her
mission. Immediately, she agrees to go back. Suddenly,
thousands of angels appear to sing her farewell.
Betty finds herself back in the hospital where it
all began. Her mission in life was completely removed
from her memory.