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Archive for the ‘Hallucinations’ Category

Hallucinations are probably a lot more common than we might think, and there are all kinds of them. Not all hallucinations are unpleasant, but that doesn’t mean they’re harmless. According to the Bible, there are also such things as visions, which I would classify as extremely rare. Then there are dreams, most are which make little sense, yet some have deep underlying meanings. It can be difficult to tell one from the other.

I believe that God could sometimes use hallucinations to reveal something. I think that’s what happened the time I mixed the pills and alcohol. The drugs caused it, but God found a way to use it. God must work with us in the condition that he finds us. He strives to bring order out of chaos.¬†Hallucinations are by their nature deceptive and dangerous, such as when our driver thought the road curved to the right, when it was actually straight (ref. part 1). Anyone who seeks some sort of revelation through drugs is opening the door to deception.

Even a good dictionary doesn’t always give the actual origin of a word. Sometimes the roots of words are also multi-faceted, and those who study such things may argue over them. It could be either this, that, or the other, or it could be all of them. Webster’s gives a Latin word that means “to dream,” as the origin for “hallucinate,” but it goes farther back than that.

I’ve said before that the word “hell” probably comes from the Hebrew name for the angel (Heylel) who became Satan (see part 2 of “Hell” in my Jan. 2011 archives). Lucifer is the Latin translation of the name Heylel. “Halo” is another member of this word family. The word hallucinate contains the roots of both the Hebrew name, and its Latin translation. I believe those names imply some sort of distortion, or twist of the light, rather than simply meaning “Light Bringer.”

Satan uses hallucinations to deceive, to kill, and sometimes simply to torment. One of my sisters died of cancer in her early thirties. When I dropped by to see her a few weeks before she died, she was holding her little girl very tightly. I could see she was treasuring every moment with her. She was on pain medication pretty heavy by that time, and she was in a state of fear. She thought she had seen demons who told her they were waiting to take her soul when she died. She tried to make her husband agree that he had seen them also. He didn’t argue with her, but I saw that he didn’t know what to say. I knew how the name of Jesus helped me when I had the hallucination back in Detroit. I said to her, “You’ve asked Jesus to be your saviour, and he is. If they come back, don’t be afraid, tell them that Jesus has your soul.”

There haven’t been many people in my life who have taken me at my word as she did. When I saw her a few days later, she was ecstatic. She said, “The demons came back, but I told them that my soul belongs to Jesus, and they just vanished.” Whether what she saw was real or not, it was real to her. She died very peacefully. Mom, Dad, and her husband were with her. One moment she was there, and she was gone in the next.

In the misty state of mind between this world and the next, God only knows exactly what is real. The stories you hear of near death hallucinations often contradict each other. I believe there’s truth and revelation in some of the stories, and deception in others, just as there is in all of life. While evil (Devil) is striving to deceive us, good (God) is working to gain our trust. I didn’t immediately accept Jesus when I had the experience back in Detroit, but I began to investigate the Bible in a more sober and unbiased way.

Mom told us that as her mother was dying, she thought she saw beautiful flowers and her young son who had died a few years before. Dad’s story seems pretty unusual also. His cancer had advanced to the point that he couldn’t sleep. When he would start to fall asleep, he’d begin to smother, and awaken as he struggled to breath. Sitting in an armchair the day before he died, he rested his head against my arms, and actually slept a few minutes. I had braced my arms in such a way that I could hold his head up awhile. Dad never wanted to go anywhere without Mom, and he was very dependent upon her. Sometime that day he told Mom that Jesus had come for him, and he asked her if she was going to go with him. She told him that she wasn’t ready to go just yet, and he said, “Well when he comes back, I’m going with him.” Dad and Mom had both grown closer to the Lord before they left this world.

What is reality? We each experience a different facet of it as it turns and changes. What is the ultimate reality? Jesus is the Word. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us…” (John 1:1 and 1:14). Jesus is real, and he is reality. The world just doesn’t realize it yet.

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I hesitated to name this post as I did. I could just hear my Atheist friends saying, “Ah, that explains it,” but they need to read on. I have intended all along to write about some private experiences. That’s one of the reasons for an anonymous blog. Very few people who know me, know that I have this blog. That way I feel free to write about something personal without fear of hurting, or embarrassing someone. Most people don’t like to talk about private matters. That’s probably one of the reasons that life’s mistakes keep repeating themselves, but more about that some other time.

Mom was one of those people who remember everything, from all the birthdays, to the dates that people died. She knew that I wasn’t good at that sort of thing. She may have worked something out with the Lord to leave this world on a date I would remember. Since then I’ve thought of the 4th of July weekend as truly being Independence Day for her. I thought of it this year as I watched the fireworks display. It was a strange kind of feeling. Because of her love for people, Mom had a hard time saying no, and that lead to a lot of pain for her. She was a Christian, and now she is free from the oxygen tanks, and hardships brought upon her by other people. In my teens, I was one of those people, not that she ever stopped worrying about us.

I don’t know if my youth would have been different if she had taken a stronger stand as a Christian. Mom may have been restrained by her fear of offending us. There were other reasons also. I think my sisters and younger brother were more aware than I of what she believed. I went to church only a few times growing up, but they went more often. I think Mom would like to have gone to church, but Dad was against it. More about that some other time also. I was brainwashed by evolutionary propaganda very early in life, and wouldn’t have been able to see how anyone could believe anything else.

That’s one of the primary reasons I became disillusioned with life, and began using drugs at an early age. One thing I always knew though, was that Mom loved me. That didn’t keep me from taking the wrong road, but it helped me to turn around at a critical time. A friend of mine down the road gave me my first marijuana. I didn’t experience anything the first few times I smoked it, which isn’t that unusual. Later on, some of the pot we sometimes smoked caused hallucinations. We wondered if it was treated with some chemical or something, but we smoked it anyway.

Not everyone believes it, but marijuana alone can cause hallucinations, especially if it has high levels of THC. I was prone to see traffic signs that weren’t really there. I remember thinking that the driver was taking us up an exit ramp in the wrong direction. I plainly saw a Do Not Enter sign. This sort of thing happened multiple times. Our driver ran us into a ditch one night because he thought he saw the road curving to the right. Dangerous stuff, but it was mixing pills and alcohol that nearly cost me my life.

It may have been my idea to hitchhike to Detroit. Hitchhiking was a little safer back then, and you could survive in the cities working day-labor jobs if you wanted to. The year before, we had hitchhiked to Florida. That had been the idea of my friend (the one who gave me the marijuana). We thought we might stumble upon a decent job in Detroit. We worked some tough jobs through the weeks, and then forgot everything on the weekends.

I think we picked up some pills at a Rock concert. I took a couple along with three or four beers the next night or so. It wasn’t anything that I hadn’t done before. I didn’t know at the time that barbiturates can cause hallucinations, but I knew that too many can kill you. I learned later that I have sleep apnea, and I probably had it to a lesser degree even then. Sleep apnea, with the combined effects of alcohol and pills, could account for the reaction that I had. I just kind of drifted out, and I really think I would have died, if I had not experienced a terrible hallucination.

In my drugged state, I thought I was dying (which I probably was), and I saw the Devil standing over me laughing. At that moment, I realized clearly that I had been terribly deceived, and I don’t really know why I thought that Jesus might help me. It seemed to take all my strength to finally stutter the name of Jesus. When I did, I immediately became conscious, and my friend was standing there saying, “What’s the matter with you man? I thought you were dying.”

It’s strange that I remember the hallucination better than the events after I came out of it. I know I told him that I thought that I was dying, and that I saw the Devil. I think I said, “He was standing right where you are,” and I asked if he didn’t see him. I know that I saw a real look of fear in his eyes, when I said whatever I said. I was afraid to lay down again that night. I put on a coat, and walked up and down the street until dawn. Apparently, I had enough sense to not venture far from the apartment complex. We lived in a dangerous area.

My friend wanted to stay in Detroit longer, but I was going home, even if I had to hitch alone. I felt like I had worried Mom more than enough, and I didn’t want to add my death to the trouble she already had. Except for legitimate medicine, I stopped taking drugs after that, but I didn’t become a Christian for another six years. I took the idea of God more seriously though, and I asked a lot of questions. I was an atheist so, why did I call for Jesus? Why did the name of Jesus break the spell of the alcohol and pills?

I don’t believe that I actually saw the Devil in person. I believe instead that God allowed me to have an hallucination that would shock me back to this level of consciousness. What I saw was the image of Satan that my mind would have conjured up at that time. It wasn’t “an angel of light,” as 2nd Corinthians 11:14 describes Satan.¬†What I saw was more real than real. In the hallucination, I saw the hatred in Satan’s eyes, as he laughed at me. I can’t describe how clearly I realized my stupidity. I know that Satan was mocking me. That is real. He mocks all of us. I absolutely believe that Jesus intervened for me in that situation. I wouldn’t advise anyone to push it that far though.

I don’t know if my friend would have called for help. It would probably have been too late, and would have attracted the attention of the police. He was caught by surprise. He may actually have been standing over me laughing at first. In my mind, Satan’s image may have been superimposed over his. Sometimes hallucinations are like that. You may see something that’s actually there, but in the fragmented condition of your mind, reality is distorted, and you see it as something else.

You can always come up with an alternative explanation to fit some of the facts, but sometimes the best explanation is that things are just as they appear to be. It was Jesus that I called upon when I was in trouble. I was delivered out of that trouble, and it is Jesus that I thank.

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