Near Death Experience: theoretical implications contingent upon validity of claim?

  • #51
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Zooby, apparently I support the New York Academy of Sciences and you don't. That's all I need to know. Thank you.
I support Galileo Galilei, but only up to a point. He got many things right, but also a lot of things wrong.

Just because an authority asserts something does not make it true. Every assertion has to be considered on its own merits.
 
  • #53
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I had a near death experience 40 years ago a few weeks before my 18th birthday and I can remember most of the details like it happened yesterday it was so real.It was a run of the mill experience as far as NDEs go traveling thru the tunnel seeing my life flashing by on either side,it was terrifying to start with and I was scared out of my wits,eventually I came out into this light where everything was bright without any glare and I was surrounded by exquisite bushland or garden.I had never felt so good in my life up until then, my recently deceased grandfather turned up with two other blokes that I didn't know,I said I thought you were dead and he laughed then I asked where god was and he laughed again,then the three of them had a bit of a talk amongst themselves and said that I had to go back.I said no way am I going back to that,anyway they talked me into it by saying there is something that I had to do I asked a few times but they wouldn't tell me what it was I'm supposed to do?As soon as I thought Oh yeah that sounds interesting,Bang! I was back in my hospital bed.I thought that was strange because it seemed like hours and hours to get there but an instant to return.Oh yeah there was no talking it was like mental telepathy and you could feel what was being said? For years after I tried to come to terms with how real it was,then I read a magazine about others who had exactly the same NDE experience.That was a big shock to find out it was real.I think there should be some serious research conducted into this phenomena.
 
  • #55
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Zooby, apparently I support the New York Academy of Sciences and you don't. That's all I need to know. Thank you.
I'm sorry, but this is ridiculous. He made a very specific criticism of the paper that you cited; either respond to the criticism, or don't respond at all.

Bye the way, The New York Academy of Sciences is the creme de la creme as far as research goes.
This is so simplistic an assertion that I'm tempted to conclude that you have never had any exposure to research at all.
 
  • #56
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Logical fallacy: Appeal to Authority
Could you explain precisely what you mean by this statement? It looks like an oxymoron to me.
 
  • #57
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Could you explain precisely what you mean by this statement? It looks like an oxymoron to me.
An appeal to authority is a logical fallacy in which a statement is claimed to be true simply because someone in a position of authority has asserted it to be true.
 
  • #58
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An appeal to authority is a logical fallacy in which a statement is claimed to be true simply because someone in a position of authority has asserted it to be true.
According to Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary A logical fallacy is; Any reasoning,exposition,argument,ect... contravening the canons of logic.So the statement itself is a logical fallacy and/or Oxymoron.Could you reply via PM because this has nothing to do with the subject at hand.
 
  • #60


Cool dream.
Bottom [awakening]: God's my life, stolen
hence, and left me asleep! I have had a most rare
vision. I have had a dream, past the wit of man to
say what dream it was: man is but an a**, if he go
about to expound this dream. Methought I was -- there
is no man can tell what. Methought I was -- and
methought I had -- but man is but a patched fool, if
he will offer to say what methought I had. The eye
of man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not
seen, man's hand is not able to taste, his tongue
to conceive, nor his heart to report, what my dream
was. I will get Peter Quince to write a ballad of
this dream: it shall be called Bottom's Dream,
because it hath no bottom...

- Midsummer Night's Dream Act IV Scene 1

A lit prof once explained that Shakespeare was probably quoting from a [now disused] translation of the Bible, that said, "These belong to the deep things of God: they have no bottom..."


Conrad.

PS - Bluey,

Maybe your grandpa just wanted to con you into returning to life...

!-)

C.
 
  • #61
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The skeptic in me wants to dismiss it as a lucid dream! The trouble is I was there and it happened,so I know myself that there is more to it. At face value it seems crazy that this (NDE) could happen and it would probably be near impossible for someone to get a grant for serious research into this phenomena. I cant blame anyone for thinking I'm a crank because that's what I would've thought before it happened to me.LOL
 
  • #62
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The skeptic in me wants to dismiss it as a lucid dream! The trouble is I was there and it happened,so I know myself that there is more to it. At face value it seems crazy that this (NDE) could happen and it would probably be near impossible for someone to get a grant for serious research into this phenomena. I cant blame anyone for thinking I'm a crank because that's what I would've thought before it happened to me.LOL
I had a bout of sleep paralysis with hallucinations that was unbelievably vivid. I would describe it as more real than reality the experience was so intense. It involved all my senses except taste and smell: vision, touch, balance, hearing. The hallucinations passed all tests of those senses, so to speak. They were so vivid I didn't even think to suppose they were hallucinations at the time. The only thing that tipped me off was the fact they evaporated in an instant and I could move again. Real things don't just evaporate. Regardless, in the absence of an explanation you tend to think you might have experienced the paranormal, and the thing disturbed me for a long time. It was actually years before I heard about sleep paralysis, that it was relatively common, and there was a good explanation for it.

Another case: many years ago I met a guy who told me what happened to him once when he went 4 days without sleep. He was driving down the street with his buddy when he noticed a ten foot tall rabbit sitting in a vacant lot. He had enough presence of mind left to know there was no such thing as a ten foot rabbit, and realized he was hallucinating from sleep deprivation. He pulled over and told his buddy to drive. I asked him how real the rabbit actually looked. He said it was completely real seeming and that he was sure if he went over and touched it he'd feel the fur as vividly as anything else in the vicinity.

How real an experience seems to your senses is not always a reliable indicator of how real it actually was.
 
  • #63


How real an experience seems to your senses is not always a reliable indicator of how real it actually was.
OTOH, your reason telling you something is NOT real is not always reliable, either!

Your friend saw a Pooka. I have a friend who started taking psych drugs and reported seeing a little green man tearing around on a motorcycle. She looked it up online and found that people do indeed see little green men sometimes.

Why green? I dunno. An archetype or something.

Big rabbits have been called pookas.


Conrad.
 
  • #64
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23


OTOH, your reason telling you something is NOT real is not always reliable, either!

Your friend saw a Pooka. I have a friend who started taking psych drugs and reported seeing a little green man tearing around on a motorcycle. She looked it up online and found that people do indeed see little green men sometimes.

Why green? I dunno. An archetype or something.

Big rabbits have been called pookas.

Conrad.
People in the West see little green men because little green men are a cultural icon in the West. It's the same reason that Western people see ghosts and not Djinn or Kitsune; which is the same reason that, when people in the West have profound religious experiences, those experiences will inevitably be of the Christian variety.
 
  • #65
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Big rabbits have been called pookas.
I know. I saw "Harvey" with James Stewart, too. Classifying giant rabbit hallucinations under the category "pooka" does not make giant rabbits real.

If you want to believe in things like that you'll never allow yourself to understand how the brain puts our experience of the environment around us together and how that mechanism can go wrong. We are completely dependent on our brains for every perception of everything you and I would agree is real: a rock, a tree, a car, a book. But the brain is an organ like any other organ in the body, and subject to pathologies and malfunctions. Sensory, emotional, and cognitive distortions happen. Under sensory deprivation, brain damage, drugs, disease, our brains can generate the experience of things that aren't actually present in the external environment: giant rabbits, lilliputian figures, disembodied voices, ghosts.
 
  • #66
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I don't think some of you have read my original post properly, haven't taken in what I have said,are talking from their own prejudice,or just trying to take the piss.What I mean is,thousands of other disparate people through out the world have had this experience,they are from different countries & cultures and lot of them have no way of knowing about other peoples NDEs, yet they are just about all the same?they tell the same story? I don't believe in magic the supernatural,religion,or the tooth fairy,but I do believe that someone with enough smarts and enough funding may be able to make some inroads into explaining this phenomena.
 
  • #67
Evo
Mentor
23,154
2,804


I don't think some of you have read my original post properly, haven't taken in what I have said,are talking from their own prejudice,or just trying to take the piss.What I mean is,thousands of other disparate people through out the world have had this experience,they are from different countries & cultures and lot of them have no way of knowing about other peoples NDEs, yet they are just about all the same?they tell the same story? I don't believe in magic the supernatural,religion,or the tooth fairy,but I do believe that someone with enough smarts and enough funding may be able to make some inroads into explaining this phenomena.
My understanding is that NDE's are vastly different from religion to religion and culture to culture. Not all cultures have them. Where are you getting such information that they are "just about the same everywhere" from?
 
  • #68
Dotini
Gold Member
621
231


My understanding is that NDE's are vastly different from religion to religion and culture to culture. Not all cultures have them. Where are you getting such information that they are "just about the same everywhere" from?
I have not had an NDE, so I cannot confirm them. However, in the book Evidence of the Afterlife, by Jeffrey Long, MD (Harper, 2010), there is a chapter dealing with worldwide consistency. Based on "the largest cross-cultural study of NDEs ever performed", he makes the following conclusions:

- The core of the NDE experience is the same all over the world. Whether Hindu in India, Muslim in Egypt, or Christian in the US, the core elements of out of body experience, tunnel experience, feelings of peace, beings of light, life review, reluctance to return and transformation after the NDE are all present.

- Preexisting beliefs do not significantly influence the content of the NDE regardless of the culture of the country that the NDErs live in. Children 5 and under who have received less cultural influence than adults have the same NDE content as adults. NDEs occurring under general anesthesia, where cultural influence or past experiences shouldn't matter, are basically the same as all other NDEs.

Some 250 volunteer translators were involved in the study of more than 2000 questionnaires from non-English language speaking peoples.

The chapter is a lengthy one so I won't go on any further at this time.

I'm neither an advocate for or against NDEs. I'm sure Dr Long has his detractors, and I don't want to get involved in defending him since I don't know him. The information I present here is merely FWIW - I don't know. But I'm interested.

Respectfully submitted,
Steve
 
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  • #69
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6


The core of the NDE experience is the same all over the world. Whether Hindu in India, Muslim in Egypt, or Christian in the US, the core elements of out of body experience, tunnel experience, feelings of peace, beings of light, life review, reluctance to return and transformation after the NDE are all present.

- Preexisting beliefs do not significantly influence the content of the NDE regardless of the culture of the country that the NDErs live in. Children 5 and under who have received less cultural influence than adults have the same NDE content as adults.
This is not entirely true. While the basic experience such as seeing a light or tunnel may be similar, culture and preexisting beliefs, plays a major role in these cases. People from different cultures experience their deity/god. Also People some of the cases describe meeting one of their relatives rather than a stranger.
 
  • #70
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To the extent any of the experiences are the same it simply means most human brains are the same. Visual Migraine auras are the same all over the world because all humans have pretty much the same visual cortex which gets disturbed in the same way during Cortical Spreading Depression. Hildegard of Bingan, though, thought her Migraine auras were visions of heaven. Tonic-Clonic seizures are pretty much the same all over the world, and so, if you insist, you can interpret that to mean people are seized by the same sorts of spirits all over the world, or you can interpret it to mean the human brain suffers the same kind of hypersynchronous neuronal firing all over the world. Heart attacks are the same all over the world, does this mean human hearts are all basically the same, or does it mean there are still medieval elves out there throwing elf-shot at people?
 
  • #71
Evo
Mentor
23,154
2,804


I have not had an NDE, so I cannot confirm them. However, in the book Evidence of the Afterlife, by Jeffrey Long, MD (Harper, 2010), there is a chapter dealing with worldwide consistency. Based on "the largest cross-cultural study of NDEs ever performed", he makes the following conclusions:

- The core of the NDE experience is the same all over the world. Whether Hindu in India, Muslim in Egypt, or Christian in the US, the core elements of out of body experience, tunnel experience, feelings of peace, beings of light, life review, reluctance to return and transformation after the NDE are all present.
Perhaps I should have specified how people interpret NDEs vary based on culture, even the reported incidences varies drastically. Supposedly 18% of Americans claim to have had them as opposed to only 4% in Germany. One has to wonder how many of these reports are false memories.

http://www.springerlink.com/content/g141t0356tj08841/

To the extent any of the experiences are the same it simply means most human brains are the same. Visual Migraine auras are the same all over the world because all humans have pretty much the same visual cortex which gets disturbed in the same way during Cortical Spreading Depression. Hildegard of Bingan, though, thought her Migraine auras were visions of heaven. Tonic-Clonic seizures are pretty much the same all over the world, and so, if you insist, you can interpret that to mean people are seized by the same sorts of spirits all over the world, or you can interpret it to mean the human brain suffers the same kind of hypersynchronous neuronal firing all over the world. Heart attacks are the same all over the world, does this mean human hearts are all basically the same, or does it mean there are still medieval elves out there throwing elf-shot at people?
I agree, the physical part of the "NDE" would indicate that it's related to what is happening within the brain, nothing mystical about it.
 
  • #72
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One has to wonder how many of these reports are false memories.
Yes, and my suspicion would also be that the people claiming a worldwide pattern are discarding reports that don't fit the pattern they like.

I recall seeing a Hiroshima bomb survivor interviewed on TV. After the bomb went off, she said, she saw devestation all around her, became aware her clothes had been blown off, and saw mulitated, screaming people everywhere. Then, suddenly, she saw a large, beautiful golden box sitting on the ground in front of her. She crawled toward it, climbed into it, and shut the lid. Inside she felt safe and completely blissful. The next thing she was aware of was being in a medical tent all bandaged up.

A report like that is simply not included by people who want to assert these things are the same all over the world over all cultures.
 
  • #73


Near-death experiences are hallucinations created by the brain due to hypoxia.
Why is this hypothesis more reasonable than the hypothesis that NDEs are what tehy seem to be?

It has been shown that pilots undergoing g-force stress training have similar experiences.
What relevance has this got?
 
  • #74


I am not aware that any NDE's have been scientifically proven.
Scientifically be proven to be what?

And what relevance has your statement got to do with anything whatsoever?
 
  • #75


Apparently you don't understand that the onus of proof lies with the one making the claim.
No I don't. However perhaps you could give an argument for this?

First of all how do we decide which of the various competing hypotheses are a "claim" and conversely which are "non-claims"?
 

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