On many occasions, people in terribly life-threatening situations manage to prevail, virtually without the help of any others. This would appear to be the case outwardly, at least... but the very ones who might contest it could be those who actually have endured such experiences.
Some may attribute such persistence to thrive to the help of a higher power. For instance, many who have near-death experiences recount meeting their deceased friends at some spiritual gap between this world and the next, and being told either that they have a choice as to whether they remain on Earth, or enter the great beyond. Others might not have the luxury of any option, returning instead from the throes of death after being advised that their work in this world may not be complete.
But there are others who recount far more extraordinary encounters with the great beyond, in which they literally feel that they owe their lives to some presence that may have not only preserved their physical existence but that may have granted them insights into seemingly otherworldly things that may be very much of this realm.
Recently on The Gralien Report Podcast, I had my friend Jeffery Pritchett of the popular Church of Mabus radio program drop in to give an update about some of his future guests. However, as I often like to ask of the hosts who join us on the program from time to time, I was interested in hearing if Jeffery might have had any paranormal experiences throughout his life that influenced him in terms of wanting to pursue the study of strange phenomenon. Indeed, Jeffery admitted that while in his teens, he had been diagnosed with cancer, and at one time questioned whether he would make it through the ordeal that followed the diagnosis. This experience, however, had also been when, in his own words, he had "found God," and recalled lying bed, asking the creator "to heal all the world's troubles and make him a superhero." Indeed, Pritchett would recover fully from his ailment, but this wasn't all that seemed to happen.
Indeed, much like the abilities a "superhero" might have, Pritchett literally began to experience strange sensations, as well as having the occasional sightings of apparent non-human entities. "Some of them looked like snakes, while others resembled a fat little Jabba the Hut," Jeffery told our listeners, noting that even many of his family members had felt that Jeffery had begun to somehow draw strange presences toward he and his family members, some of which described having similar encounters while in Jeffery's presence. Could it actually be that while Pritchett was indeed healed, he may also have begun to harness some strange ability to perceive worlds beyond our own?
There are a number of other stories of those who have claimed to suffer near-death experiences and near-fatal illnesses, only to recover and go on to harness extraordinary abilities following their sickness. For instance, even Dr. Stephen Greer, famous advocate of UFO and extraterrestrial disclosure, also made similar claims in his book Hidden Truth, Forbidden Knowledge, chalking his recovery up to what he believed were aliens from space that had chosen to help him.
But according to some, there are more prosaic explanations that could account for at least some miraculous tales of survival. Back in April of this year, I commented on a 2008 book titled, The Third Man Factor: Surviving the Impossible, by author John Geiger. In it, Geiger recounts a number of instances of apparent survival against the extreme, where many of his cases described having been helped or accompanied by a ghostly presence. “All have escaped traumatic events only to tell strikingly similar stories of having experienced the close presence of a companion and helper,” Geiger wrote, citing instances of this phenomenon that run the gamut from prisoners during wartime, to aviators and astronauts, survivors of the September 11 terrorist attacks, and even a 1953 Himalayan encounter with one survivor who believed he "was not alone" during his mountain climbing excursion gone-wrong. I went on to speculate that this very sort of interpretation might even have had something to do with a particularly strange Yeti encounter, in which a man claimed he had been rescued by one of the gentle mountain beasts.
Bearing Geiger's "Third Man Factor" in mind, when it comes to surviving the impossible, maybe this is one instance where the expression "three is company" doesn't always apply! I would be interested in hearing whether any Mysterious Universe readers have had similar experiences where you've felt that a ghostly or otherworldly encounter may have helped you cheat death in the past... feel free to share your own comments and stories in the field provided below.