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Sunday, March 16, 2014

Love: The First Message (Part 1)

You are not on Earth to simply learn, but to Love.
You are on Earth to love, and to learn to love: everyone and everything. You are  meant to find and experience Joy in feeling and expressing Love to others. It is through the acts of Love and Compassion that you are brought closer to Spirit.

Love was the first thing I felt when I came to my senses Over There: it was a LOVE so big and powerful that it felt as though an intense wave of energy blasted through me. This intense, powerful feeling of love brought me to my knees. What I felt was all love, every type of love, and in a big way. It is the kind of BIG LOVE that we humans just cannot fathom inside of our limited experience. I understood that what I felt was the energy of love on a Divine scale and that only when we return to Spirit will we be able to feel and truly understand it.

The First Message wasn't necessarily about that Divine love, though. Rather, it dealt with the main reason that we are here on this planet. We are here to love everyone and everything around us. That's pretty much it. Our primary reason for being is love. To show love to others, to feel love for others, to feel and show love for our surroundings and the planet and everything on it, including ourselves.

Everything comes back to love.

More details, including my thoughts and exercises to grow your love bank, are in the book: Awakenings from the Light.

All content copyright Nancy Rynes, 2014. Please read disclaimer and Legal Notes here.

Monday, March 10, 2014

How I Saw and Experienced Heaven

While my time on the Other Side (aka, "Heaven") was brief in human terms, when I was there it felt as if weeks or months were passing. I observed an amazing amount in, at most, just a couple of human hours. The first wonderful thing that I experienced was the beauty of Heaven, both visually and in a feeling-sense.
When I was there, a landscape of gently rolling hills surrounded me. Flower-filled grassy meadows spread out on the hills around me and huge deciduous trees in full leaf, trees larger and more grand than any here on Earth, surrounded the meadows. A barest sense of a light mist, as if it were a humid summer morning, clung to the tops of the trees. The sky shown a very light blue, similar to what you might see at the ocean’s shore, with wispy clouds and a very bright but somewhat diffuse golden light. 
That was the visual. But there is more to Heaven than what we can see with our eyes. Below the surface visuals was a well of feeling fueled by love, peace, and an abiding Presence that I will call Spirit or God.
Through the landscape around me I sensed a profound feeling of peace, “rightness,” goodness, and love. The Beauty I felt really does deserve a capital “B.” It wasn’t just pleasing to the eye, there was something deeper to it, more harmonious, more blessed, more powerful. Everything felt tied together by love and peace, and the beauty of the scenes around me were the product of this unconditional love. 

While the beauty of Heaven took my breath away, the sense love completely ensnared me and made me want to stay there forever. I felt a deep sense of that love flowing through all things around me: the air, the ground below my feet, the trees, the clouds, and me. I felt the love flowing around me, flowing through me, and eventually capturing me by the heart. I felt supported by a loving Presence so powerful, yet so gentle, that I cried again. I had never experienced such unconditional love and acceptance in all of my years on the planet.

It felt as though this place were built from love and peace on a very grand, cosmic scale.

What I realized (and was later told by my Guide) was that love formed the structure or underpinnings of Heaven. Each soul might see the "landscape" differently, but all sensed and "saw" the love that formed the basis for everything in the same way. That love and peace seemed to shimmer as glimmers of light beneath the surface -- winking in and out of visual sight. It had colors and sparkle and texture. It seemed to take the form of what I saw (trees, a meadow, etc.) but at the same time it was also separate from the forms themselves.
The closest I can come to explaining what Heaven "looked" like to my feeling-senses is to point you to the work of artist Ken Elliott. His paintings come closest to capturing what I felt underlying the landscape Over There. I'll share two pieces with you here with his permission, but please check out his website ( for more examples.
"Soft Blue Progression" by artist Ken Elliott

"Soft Blue Progression," comes closest to showing you what the visuals looked like for me as well. "Yellow Wall," as well as Ken's other paintings, gives a sense of the energy or vibration of LOVE and PEACE that build everything There.

"Yellow Wall" by Ken Elloitt

Stay tuned for my next post which will explore the concept of LOVE as the First Teaching.

More details, including my thoughts, are in the book: Awakenings from the Light.

All content copyright Nancy Rynes, 2014. Please read disclaimer and Legal Notes here.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

My Time Near Death

In January of 2014, I experienced some things that promise to change my life forever. These experiences went from horribly terrifying and painful, to profoundly beautiful and soul-stirring, all within the space of a few days.

On the morning of Jan. 3, 2014, while riding my bicycle here in town, I was struck broadside by a truck. My injuries were severe -- I am still in recovery from some of them -- and by all accounts of the doctors who treated me, I shouldn't have lived.

"Most people die from injuries like yours," my surgeon and primary care physician insist.

And they were right. I shouldn't have lived. In fact I came very close to death twice during those first few days. And during those brushes with death, I had two Near-Death Experiences (NDEs) that are promising to change the way I look at life, the way I experience life, and the way I feel about the concepts of God and Spirit.

Before we go any further, let me say that I debated about putting this "out there," but I realize that it has to be right now. I feel in my heart that it's not good to hold on to this experience. At least one of my friends is soon facing the final transition and I would hope this post in some small way helps her make peace with moving on. And I hope it helps others facing a similar situation.

My first near-death experience happened when the truck initially struck me. In human time this NDE lasted just a few minutes. As I was struck, I realized that my consciousness was in two places simultaneously. One part, very scared and animal-like, was firmly inside of my broken body that was stuck on the vehicle's axle and being dragged under the truck. The other part, a very calm, dispassionate observer, hovered out in front of the truck and off to the south, watching the whole scene unfold from a distance.

This dual consciousness seemed quite normal to the observer part of me. The observer was calm about the whole thing, and I remember the feeling that this was all happening for a reason, that there was nothing to fear.

The observer-me watched as witnesses stopped, called for help, and as the paramedics arrived. When the paramedics started working on me, my two selves came back together. Once I was stabilized enough to move, they transported me to the nearest trauma hospital.
It turned out that my head and spinal injuries were so severe that I'd need surgery. My lower spine would need reconstruction, but only after the bleeding in my brain stabilized. In the meantime, the trauma team admitted me to the intensive care unit (ICU).

I pondered that initial split-consciousness experience for a few days in ICU while I awaited surgery. I had no explanation for being in two places at the same time, for experiencing the accident from two different vantage points at once. In my scientific mind I didn't know how consciousness could split apart with one traveling outside of the body. Finally, I dismissed it as just an oddity of the crash and almost dying. It wasn't important, and it most certainly wasn't "real."

Or so I thought.

Perhaps because the first experience wasn't enough to get me thinking about spiritual matters, during surgery (three days later) I was pulled right into the thick of things. I had another NDE but this one was different. Instead of simply experiencing events unfold from outside of my body, my consciousness was ultimately brought to a place unlike anything I have ever experienced.

The beauty and utter peace of the Place defies human words. I felt totally calm, loved, and whole. I also felt a deep, profound sense of LOVE permeating everything there -- big love -- as if the structure of this place was somehow made of love. It was everywhere -- there was nowhere it wasn't. I can't explain it any further than that.

I already never wanted to leave this Place.

One "Being" greeted me: a woman, although she said it was a form "she" took at that time to make it easy for me to relate to "her." She was a stranger to me, although I was somehow not a stranger to her.

She moved with me throughout the "landscape," telling me things that I and the rest of the world needed to remember. Things we'd forgotten or perhaps never learned. Reminders that would help us live a beautiful life on Earth. She said she was a spokesperson for "Everyone" in "Heaven." Somehow, she was a conduit for the information I was being given. That if I met  and communicated with everyone who wanted to speak with me, I would be overwhelmed.

It felt as though we were together for days, even weeks. The amount of information she passed on to me was staggering. I am still processing it.

But eventually she insisted it was time for me to go back to my life. The thought of that made me weep like a child. I didn't want to go back, not now, not ever. This Place was too beautiful and loving for me to want to leave.

But she insisted I had a life to live. It wasn't time for me to be here for good.

I argued up and down. Even yelled a few times. Can you imagine, arguing with a Being such as this? But I did. I argued and cried. I insisted I didn't want to go back to a broken body and all of the repercussions from this experience that awaited me. She watched me with what I felt was sadness, but she insisted that it was my time to go back.

And as I opened my mouth to argue again, I was the surgical recovery room. Confused. Weeping. Already missing that Place and the Being who I'd met there.

And no, I am no longer an atheist or agnostic, although at this point I don't want to put a label on what I am. I did have the good fortune to be shown Spirit in a way that made me realize that I can no longer deny It for myself, though. And it has opened my heart to all peoples, all faiths, and all beliefs in a way that I would not have thought possible.

I will share a small bit of the first thing she taught me. We are primarily here to Love: to practice Love, to show Love, to experience Love. Hate is not the language of Spirit, nor is fear...Love is. And it is a Love that has no conditions or strings attached. It is simply Love in all of its forms.

There will be much more to come later, more details on what I saw and learned. I was asked to share this with as many people as possible, so that is what I intend to do. That's what I promised, after all. I am not sure yet how I will get the information out...I think this blog is a good start, but I expect that some larger form of publication will be in the works too.

And Yes, this is all real. No, I didn't make up or embellish any of it. I understand that some of you will think I'm crazy or hallucinating. Some of you may find any explanation you can to deny my experiences because they feel uncomfortable to you. Some people I have known for years may choose to distance themselves from me. This could cost me much...I was an agnostic scientist until just a couple of months ago, after all.

But this is me and my life now. And I trust that this post and all that follows helps more than it hurts. That it gives people hope, that it brings people together. And it may be that this post brings new people or opportunities into my life as well.

All is as it should be :-)

Read more on How I Saw and Experienced Heaven...

More details, including my thoughts, are in the book: Awakenings from the Light.

All content copyright Nancy Rynes, 2014. Please read disclaimer and Legal Notes here.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Letting Go, Moving On

Sometimes life seems to throw us a curve ball. The breakup of a marriage, death of a parent, a traumatic accident, loss of a job - any of these can catch us by surprise and cause us to feel angry, depressed, and victimized. We might even ask "Why me, what did I do to deserve this?" It might feel as though we're wandering in a maze of darkness, loneliness, and isolation, cut off from the life we knew.

Es Siq, Jordan

Last night, a friend of mine commented on my upbeat attitude and positive outlook on life and wondered how I could maintain it. After all, he said, you deserve to feel victimized after what you went through these last couple of months. He wondered why I wasn't angry or bitter with the person who caused the injuries that almost left me paralyzed.

I'll admit that there was a time where wallowing in anger and self-pity is exactly what I'd be doing right now. But when I was 23, I met someone whose message forever changed how I looked at these tough events in our lives.

During the summer of 1989, Andrews University and the Government of Jordan hired me to be an archaeological artist on a dig just outside of Amman. My job was to draw each object found on the dig - no small task since the dig encompassed three sites, the smallest being the size of an American football field, and the timespan of the dig ran back to 3000 B.C.E.

Madaba Plains Project dig site, 1989, Amman

I had a lot of antiquities to draw but even then, I still had time to wander through Amman and soak up the culture.

Roman theater in Amman

On one of my forays into the city, I stopped at a small shop that sold ice cream and a bewildering array of confections. Jordanians love their sweets! The owner of the store, a man of about 55 to 60 years old, surprised me by striking up a conversation. Now this was very unusual for 1989 in Jordan - to have an older, married man start a conversation with a young, unmarried, foreign woman just wasn't done. But he explained that he had gone to college in the US and just wanted a chance to practice his English.

He stood about six feet tall and wore the typical jellabiya (long white linen robe) of Jordan. His face was classic Arabic - beautiful aquiline nose, lean, sharp features, dark brown eyes, and very tan, weathered skin. His build strong but lean. And he spoke flawless English.

During the course of the conversation, he let on that he was Palestinian.

Fear clutched at my belly. The late 1980s saw a lot of unrest between Palestinian terrorists and Israel, and I had no idea what this man in front of me was capable of. During the few months I'd been here, several innocent people had died in border skirmishes. The danger was real. I was here, alone, no one at the dig knew exactly where I was. My first thought was: I'm going to be a hostage. Dumb Dumb Dumb. 

I think he saw the fear on my face and reassured me that I was safe. His smile and easy, relaxed demeanor allowed me to let my guard down a little.

I gathered my courage and asked him how he felt about the terrorism, the hatred felt between  some of the Palestinians and the Israelis. I wanted to know how it had impacted him and his people, and if there was a way out of the circle of violence and anger.

He said that the violence greatly saddened him, that it was time to just let all of this anger and bitterness go and get on with the job of living in peace with each other. I asked if he really thought it was possible, to just let it go and move on with life.

He responded by telling me about himself: how in 1948, when he was a young man still living with his parents just outside of Jerusalem, American and British soldiers knocked on the door of his family's home one night. The United Nations forces were clearing out portions of what used to be Palestine to aid in the creation of the new country of Israel. He told me that the soldiers gave the family only a few hours to pack up their belongings, to leave the home they had lived in for over 350 years, and move.

They had no idea where they would go. They were now refugees.

In time, the family ended up in Amman where his father was able to start a small business. Eventually, the son studied in America but came home upon graduation and helped with the business. By all accounts, this man in front of me said he had a good life: a beautiful wife and children, a business, a home, good health, but he admitted to missing the family home he knew and loved as a child. Although, he said, no family home was worth the violence gripping his people.

I asked him if he himself was angry or bitter, if he harbored any resentment towards Americans or the British. His answer moved me to tears and has stuck with me to this day.

No, he explained, while he missed his home, what's done is done.  At first, he was angry  about losing his family's home but he quickly realized that there was no point wallowing in negativity. Doing so would ruin the life that he was living now. He preferred to focus on the wonderful things he did have.  He said that the United Nations forces were doing what they thought was right. And too, the Jewish people did deserve a home after what they'd been through...this  man's only wish was that the UN and Israel would have given the Palestinians a chance to stay and live in peace with the new government. He believed it was possible, and still believed it was possible, but he understood the situation too.

He said that happiness was a was living a life of hatred and bitterness. His preference was to live a happy, peaceful life and get along with those around him.

What I realized was that he had wandered through a maze of anger and decided to come out into the light. Once he made the choice of happiness, a beautiful life unfolded...

El Kazneh (The Treasury), Petra, Jordan

I remember this man every time I even start to feel bad about events in my life. He is right - what happens to us, happens. Often we have no control over it. But how we choose to go forward with our life is completely up to us. We can waste our time being angry or bitter, or we can let it go and embrace joy and happiness.

I don't know about you, but I choose to focus on being happy...

For more information about the exodus from Palestine, see Plan Dalet on

All text and pictures copyright Nancy Rynes, 2014. You may share links to this page, but please do not copy text or photos without my written permission.