At the time of my out of body experience from a dream state, I had left my job and had spent my time as a faith community worker as well as doing contract work for a research firm. I had also experienced depression that left me feeling despair. My experience must have been August or September.
I had recently discovered the album of a Baha'i artist named Shadi Toloui-Wallace and one of the songs became stuck in my head called “Free from Self”. The lyrics are from one of Baha'u'llah's quotes which says, "Oh my Servant! Free thyself from the fetters of this world and loose thy soul from the prison of self. Seize thy chance for it will come to thee no more." It was an admonition and I found the melody particularly beautiful.
I felt a heaviness in my chest before I went to sleep, and I had a sense of sadness about my service having felt insufficient. When I fell asleep, I woke to a white space that was unusually bright but not painful in any way. I heard my sister say, as I transitioned, not to worry about money, which filled with me some comfort since my ability to find full-time work had been challenging.
I moved as if floating forward and I heard the song being sung in the background. I met a human being whom I did not recognize. He had some weight on his mid-section and was probably in his mid-forties with hair that reached his shoulders. He was wearing a greyish coat, and I determined he was around 5'8”. Communication was telepathic, and I understood through an unknown but universal intelligence that this person (I don't know his name) had developed a tremendous capacity for “Empathy” while on earth. I sensed he was still living in an earthly body though, as his presence was not permanently in that space I was in either.
I also learned that people develop capacity for various attributes while on earth but that this quality was one which was particularly well-developed in him due his life circumstances. When I approached him, his gaze went right through me, and he could see and understand my emotional sadness and the pain of my past. Every cell of my body reacted to the presence of empathy and I begin to feel something change. My sense of time was off so I don't know how long this actually took. When it finished, I remember asking if there is any way I could see him again, and he didn't respond yes or no but seemed open to future communication.
When I woke up, I felt genuinely different. Something had changed, and I sensed my body had healed itself. I felt energized and had a stronger sense of purpose, and I no longer wanted to dwell on negative thoughts. This did not change and I began to reach out to a new friend who had been on my mind for a few years. We are now very close and we do have a telepathic ability between us.
When I had first become a Baha'i in 1989, I dreamed I had mounted steps in a white building and, through one of the large arched windows a mesmerizing deep turquois blue light radiated the attribute of “Unconditional Love” that had a similar transformative effect, although also very different. This 1989 event was not associated with any entity I recognized as distinct from me. It’s hard to explain, but it was immensely powerful, and the experience was exceptionally appealing and peaceful. This was the only other time I had experienced something similar, but it was also specifically shaped by aspects of my Baha'i identity.
I experienced a deep longing to return to both of these experiences. It took years for me to be able to move forward from the emotional and otherworldly experience of these events. What made the most recent experience so unique was the specific clarity that involved simultaneous communication, and the fact that cultivated attributes in souls are endowed with power (e.g., how the attribute of “Empathy” has the effect of being able to change actual physical properties of things), which left the strongest impression on me.