Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Skeptical of Near-Death-Experiences

There are hundreds of articles online illustrating problems with NDE's and alternative explanations for them. But, I wanted to highlight a copy, the first of which I always have the hardest time finding when I am looking for it and the information it contains is rather unique as far as I can tell:

You have to read this article:

Even if we disregard the overwhelming evidence for the dependence of consciousness on the brain, there remains strong evidence from reports of near-death experiences themselves that NDEs are not glimpses of an afterlife. This evidence includes:

(1) discrepancies between what is seen in the out-of-body component of an NDE and what's actually happening in the physical world;

(2) bodily sensations incorporated into the NDE, either as they are or experienced as NDE imagery;

(3) encountering living persons during NDEs;

(4) the greater variety of differences than similarities between different NDEs, where specific details of NDEs generally conform to cultural expectation;

(5) the typical randomness or insignificance of the memories retrieved during those few NDEs that include a life review;

(6) NDEs where the experiencer makes a decision not to return to life by crossing a barrier or threshold viewed as a 'point of no return,' but is restored to life anyway;

(7) hallucinatory imagery in NDEs, including encounters with mythological creatures and fictional characters; and

(8) the failure of predictions in those instances in which experiencers report seeing future events during NDEs or gaining psychic abilities after them.

And here are two more good articles:

Near Death Experiences & the Medical Literature by Mark Crislip

NDEs Redux Skeptics need to reclaim, redefine & embrace Near Death Experiences by Sebastian Dieguez

OK, one last article on Out of Body Experiences


Danceattak said...


I read a lot of your stuff here and on postmo.I'm looking for a particular article that I think you wrote about moral relativism. Do you recall writing or citing an article about relativism? I'm in a philosophy class, "Ethics in Biotechnology," in which the professor claims relativism is unjustifiable logically and I remembered this fantastic article defending relativism. Let me know if you remember the article because I can't find it on your blog. if you follow up on this comment it will be emailed to me. Thanks!

Hüffenhardt said...

I think you are looking for this post of mine:

Rene NDE Researcher said...

You see what you want to see. In stead of looking for 'mistakes' and arguments to support your already made up mind, try to investigate the case of Pam Reynolds. She was clinical dead for 55min with flat EEG, but still reported an NDE during this time. She was able to describe the instruments used and conversations made during flat EEG. These observations where later verified.

And yes, the studies of veridical perceptions in NDEs show that about 70% of observations are wrong, but still you have 30% of observations that are verified by objective means. Try to explain how this is possible instead because this should be impossible.

To your last points; NDE research concludes that images and meetings within the NDE are projections as the mind of each individual interacts with the out-of-body dimension. Behind these projections, who are conditioned by culture, you still have a universal pattern of so-called "core experiences".

To date, no theory can explain the NDE phenomenon.

Rene NDE Researcher said...

...One reason that predictions and perceptions are unclear is that the Out-of-Body state is unimaginable overwhelming and "seeing" is undescribable compared to this dimension.