Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Did I hear God's Voice?

One night I was lying in bed awake with my eyes closed, perhaps on the verge of sleep, when I heard a loud voice say to me "The Spirit of the Lord is upon you". The voice was masculine and familiar to me but I couldn't put my finger on whose voice it was. The voice was also very loud, like someone speaking over a microphone. I was certain that it woke everyone in the house. I was frightened and I pounded on the wall to see if my mom had heard the noise. She didn't and neither did anyone one else.

When this happened I was sixteen and it was shortly after the experience I had with sleep paralysis which I describe in an earlier blog entry. I thought about this experience and believed that it was God's will that I become a great Bible teacher. I was even more motivated to learn God's word than before. I often boasted that I had heard God speak to me in an audible voice. You are probably thinking that I had illusions of grandeur and if you are, I agree with you. For reasons I won't explain, things didn't turn out as I hoped. I never did become a great Bible teacher. In fact, I backslid and abandoned Christian practice all together.

Sometime later I was reading web pages about sleep paralysis and came across information on hypnagogic and hypnopompic hallucinations. A hypnagogic hallucination is one that occurs when falling asleep. A hypnopompic hallucination is one that occurs when waking up. I have had several hypnopompic hallucinations but only one hypnagogic one. The most experienced hypnopompic hallucination I have is hearing someone call my name. Then I wake up but no one is there.

I now attribute what I heard when I was sixteen to a hypnagogic hallucination but I am not 100% sure. What do you think?


At 8:38 AM, June 12, 2008, Blogger folgsam said...

You had a hypnagogic hallucination.

100% sure.

At 12:17 PM, July 29, 2008, Anonymous whateverman said...

There've been times in my life when I've had "strange" stuff like this happen. While living in central MA, I used to hear voices, but it was more like a crowd in the distance - I couldn't detect anything intelligent, although it was creepy.

More recently, while living in Boston I would get woken up (I thought) by someone talking to me, or a noise right to my bed, etc. That was even creepier.

Sad to say, although I nursed a guilty desire for it to be supernatural, none of it displayed enough intent; I couldn't point to it and convincingly tell myself "The voices want me to {X}".

I'm always wary of cherry-picking evidence to support things that I *want* to be true. It seems to me most people lack this instinct...


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