The end of the near-death experience

(134 Posts)

I've always sat on the believer/non-believer fence.

One of my strongest beliefs in the after-life was the bafflement of scientists over near-death experiences. I would get into debates with athiests over this: "How could a person who is dead still have mental awareness to have these?!"

Well, scientific evidence has come out this week, here:
m.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23672150

I have to say, the article has really shaken me. I don't know why, because I'm sure it's not that surprising, but it's one of the things that have kept me on this side of believing in God, and now I'm feeling really confused and sad about it.

I'd like to hear from Believers (of any faith!), who can read that and tell me why it's inconsequential to them regarding their faith.

I have a fear of dying, so please be gentle if you're Athiest...reinforcing to me there is nothing after death will make me feel worse.

Thanks x

MostlyLovingLurchers Thu 29-Aug-13 12:50:46

I hope so. I think they will still have the problem that the patient may not notice the trigger objects despite having an experience. I can imagine that your attention would be elsewhere! When i had my OBE i noticed some things in great detail but was completely oblivious to some fairly major things - i couldn't have told you anything about the car that hit me for example, not until afterwards, but it didn't mean that I wasn't hit by a car. However, you would expect at least some subjects to notice the objects - if even one person did and all other explanations could be ruled out, and all scans showed that the person met the criteria for clinical death, then that would be quite profound.

MostlyLovingLurchers Thu 29-Aug-13 12:57:46

Springy - he had his pulse taken at the scene of the accident. That is not sufficient to confirm someone is clinically dead and has no brain activity.

expatinscotland Thu 29-Aug-13 13:58:21

Exactly, Mostly.

headinhands Thu 29-Aug-13 14:17:33

This is why they aren't just testing one person in one hospital. There will be lots of opportunities for the images to be seen. Iirc many OBEees do mention lots of objects they could see which I suspect is why the researchers have chosen this method because its a feature of OBEs, that is, the recalling of non consequential details.

MostlyLovingLurchers Thu 29-Aug-13 15:34:36

Apparently in a US radio interview January last year Dr Sam Parnia, who is leading the study, said the following about the results so far:

In the AWARE study, Parnia says only 10% (400 or so) actually survived their cardiac arrest. One case for sure (veridical evidence) strongly suggests consciousness continues to exist after death. He states only about 7% in his study – those people who were truly DEAD, not nearly dead – who survived could recall their actual-death-experience. And the percentage who had the OBE component – able to perceive their physical surroundings out-of-body – was much lower (about 1% according to his NPR interview). Work/the study is still continuing, and they are adapting the experiment as they learn more along the way.

However careful the methodology, I don't think it will satisfy the skeptics. Have a read of this:

www.skepticforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=54&t=19749&sid=8a9694e174c65bbb39732fc425a01344&start=40

GrimmaTheNome Thu 29-Aug-13 15:44:22

Begs the question how you define 'truly dead'.

headinhands Thu 29-Aug-13 16:13:50

If the data shows clear testable and repeatable evidence that our mind can exist outside our brain in the same way evidence shows that, say asbestos damages our lungs then it would be difficult to deny it.

MostlyLovingLurchers Thu 29-Aug-13 16:18:09

I think that is the biggest stumbling block. Brain death is defined as the irreversible loss of all functions of the brain, including the brainstem. With NDE the process is reversible, so by definition the patient cannot be brain dead. Surely?

Stripedmum Sat 31-Aug-13 08:31:11

Marking place. Want to come back later and read through everyone's responses.

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