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Thoughts as you approach your own death

Discussion in 'Spiritual Articles' started by spnadmin, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    Stan Goldberg
    End of Life Issues Examiner


    How do we “know” something? How do we know anything? Our primary sources usually involve written documents or the spoken word, with information ranging from ludicrously false to probably true. Yet, most of the time, even the most “objective” information has a slight personal twist to it, placing a layer between it and us. What we know in these instances is what another source has said about it.

    Our “knowing” gains more credibility if we personally have witnessed or participated in something. It’s one thing to say “I read it,” and quite another to say “I saw it.” Most of my end-of-life articles for the past eight years falls into the “I saw it,” category on issues directly relating to death and grief. What I have witnessed in the deaths of my patients and the grief of their families often bears little resemblance to what some books and academics say I should be experiencing.

    And then, there’s the type of information derived from experiences so personal that what you know reaches the level of “knowledge.” I’m often asked what people think as they approach death. Not weeks or days before, but very close to it. Until last night, I could only explain what I saw.

    I woke at midnight with an incredible pain in my abdomen. A little Pepto Bismol, I thought, and I’d be fine. But I wasn’t fine. As the intensity of the pain increased and spread, I began having difficulty breathing and almost passed out.

    “Should we go to the emergency room?” My wife, Wendy, asked. Based on my past reluctance to seek medical attention, I’m sure she expected me to say, “Let’s wait 15 minutes.”

    “No, call 911,” I said in a whisper.

    After dressing and stumbling down the stairs, I laid on the couch and for the first time ever, thought I was dying. Did I have any of the amazing revelations some teachers and authors say the dying have? No. Did I think about my life: those things I regretted doing and what I wouldn’t achieve? No. What I thought about was the pain, nothing else.

    Paramedics and firemen were in the house less than four minutes after Wendy called. Their reactions to my breathless words, gray pallor, and pained facial expression confirmed my belief that, indeed, I was dying. By the time I was in the ambulance, the pain was cyclical—a few minutes of ascending pain, a few minutes of descending pain. When the pain diminished, allowing me a window of rationality, I looked back at my life and realized my hospice patients had taught me well.

    “If I die now,” I said to myself as the paramedics attached leads to my chest, inserted an IV, and spoke to the hospital emergency staff by radio, “I haven’t left much unsaid or undone.” For eight years I have been a midwife to death and witnessed what made some deaths easier than others. I learned the importance of forgiving those who did unskillful acts against me, asking for forgiveness from those I wronged, letting go of what no longer worked, communicating heart-felt feelings, and I trying to live my life with compassion and love. If I was to die, I had cleaned my plate of those things I observed made dying difficult. I realized my hospice patients had given me more than experiences. They had conveyed a knowledge about dying that had practical consequences.

    “Is there anything I can do to make you more comfortable?” the paramedic said as the ambulance sped to the hospital.

    “Yes. Either get better shocks for the truck or have San Francisco fill it’s potholes.”

    As we laughed and bounced along the streets, my belief that I was dying diminished. After six hours and many tests, the diagnosis was uncertain: probably an ulcer created by continuously taking ibuprofen.

    We often fret and wonder how we will act in certain situations. Some have comparatively minor consequences, such as what we’ll say when something embarrassing we did is uncovered. Others are pervasive, such as how we will approach our deaths.

    I was given a dress rehearsal—one that was frightening, but also enlightening. What I experienced when I thought I was dying was a confirmation of those things I witnessed that eased my patients’ deaths:

    1. Forgiving the unskillful acts of others
    2. Letting go of what no longer works
    3. Giving unconditionally
    4. Communicating from the heart
    5. Being compassionate (if not, at least understanding)
    6. Not afraid to love
    7. Asking for forgiveness for your own unskillful words and acts.

    Every death is unique. But these seven lessons are a good starting point. Above all else, don’t wait, that pain you experience might be more serious than an ulcer.

    Stan Goldberg is author of the award-winning book Lessons for the Living: Stories of Forgiveness, Gratitude,and Courage and the End of Life.

    http://www.examiner.com/end-of-life-issues-in-san-francisco/thoughts-as-you-approach-your-own-death
     
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  3. findingmyway

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    Live in the present and not the past or future so you have no regrets is what my car accident taught me! Also never leave an argument unresolved as you never know whats going to happen.

    Thanks for posting such a wonderful article spnadmin kudihug
     
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  4. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    You are welcome. I had no idea what the reactions would be. Some people may think it is morbid. However the man who wrote the article is professionally involved in hospice and spiritual care of the dying on a daily basis.

    My own experience has been - when facing death in a very real and personal way -- which I have, it is now impossible for anyone to scare me with "the punishment of death" as some have tried. "The angel of death, the jamdoots, are coming for you, etc. etc."

    Death is not frightening. Thinking about death can be frightening. Depends on what you are thinking.
     
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  5. findingmyway

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    Death is the only reality!! We all die at some point so why be scared of something that is inevitable? Gurbani also tells us not to be afraid of death so I feel fear in death is completely irrational. I'm more afraid of bugee jumping (but have been skydiving so go figure!) ;)

    The article merely uses death as a way of showing how to live. When faced with one, it is easier to remember the other as many get too busy in expectations and emotions to really live life.

    No angel of death in gurbani so i don't think you have to worry about the existence of one. We don't live in Harry Potter's world cheerleader
     
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  6. Ishna

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    Yes, thank you spnadmin for the great article. It's good to hear the thoughts of someone who works in hospice and has also had a relatively near death experience. Got both perspectives there!

    The realisation that we will all someday die is an incrediblly motivating force.

    I think the process of dying seems scarier than actually dying.

    Gurbani tells me my wedding day is coming and I should get ready by attuning myself to Naam, living honestly, helping people and being in chardi kala (which is hard to do all the time!). Knowing that it is going to happen makes me more motivated to try and be the best I can be.

    Ishna
     
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  7. Sinister

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    scarier than death itself is the experience leading up to it.

    that is what I think people fear more, not death itself but the physical pain of pre death...when you are "circling the drain".
     
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  8. Seeker9

    Seeker9 United Kingdom
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    If it's not going off at a tangent in this thread, the concept of the "near death experience" is something I would like to discuss

    What do people think is happening here?
    Is it something to do with a combination of natural brain functions and one's one vivid imagination?
    Or is it something supernatural?

    Why do young children who are too young to have any concept of God or belief in a particular religious figurehead nonetheless have such experiences, which is evidenced by the pictures they draw afterwards?

    Clearly something has happened.......
     
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  9. findingmyway

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    Near Death Experiences Explained?

    Bright lights, angelic visions products of too much CO2 in the blood study says.

    A patient undergoes open-heart surgery (file photo).
    Photograph by LM Otero, AP

    James Owen
    for National Geographhic News
    Published April 8, 2010
    Near-death experiences are tricks of the mind triggered by an overload of carbon dioxide in the bloodstream, a new study suggests.
    Many people who have recovered from life-threatening injuries have said they experienced their lives flashing before their eyes, saw bright lights, left their bodies, or encountered angels or dead loved ones.

    In the new study, researchers investigated whether different levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide—the main blood gases—play a role in the mysterious phenomenon. The team studied 52 heart attack patients who had been admitted to three major hospitals and were eventually resuscitated. Eleven of the patients reported near-death experiences.

    During cardiac arrest and resuscitation, blood gases such as CO2 rise or fall because of the lack of circulation and breathing. "We found that in those patients who experienced the phenomenon, blood carbon-dioxide levels were significantly higher than in those who did not," said team member Zalika Klemenc-Ketis, of the University of Maribor in Slovenia.

    CO2 Only Common Factor in Near-Death Experiences
    Other factors, such a patient's sex, age, or religious beliefs—or the time it took to revive them—had no bearing on whether the patients reported near-death experiences.

    The drugs used during initial treatment—a suggested explanation for near-death experiences after heart attacks—also didn't seem to correlate with the sensations, according to the study authors.

    How carbon dioxide might actually interact with the brain to produce near-death sensations was beyond the scope of the study, so for now "the exact pathophysiological mechanism for this is not known," Klemenc-Ketis said. However, people who have inhaled excess carbon dioxide or have been at high altitudes, which can raise the blood's CO2 concentrations, have been known to have sensations similar to near-death experiences, she said.

    A Glimpse of the Afterlife?
    The study is among the first to find a direct link between carbon dioxide in the blood and near-death experiences, or NDEs, said Christopher French, a psychologist at the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit of the University of London, who was not involved in the new research. The hospital study bolsters previous lab work done in the 1950s that found "the effects of hypercarbia [abnormally high levels of CO2 in the blood] were very similar to what we would now recognise as NDEs," French said in an email.
    The research also supports the argument that anything that disinhibits the brain—damages the brain's ability to manage impulses—can produce near-death sensations, he said. Physical brain injury, drugs, and delirium have all been associated with a disinhibited state, and CO2 overload is another potential trigger.

    Still, not all scientists are convinced: "The one difficulty in arguing that CO2 is the cause is that in cardiac arrests, everybody has high CO2 but only 10 percent have NDEs," said neuropsychiatrist Peter Fenwick of the Institute of Psychiatry at Kings College London. What's more, in heart attack patients, Fenwick said, "there is no coherent cerebral activity which could support consciousness, let alone an experience with the clarity of an NDE."

    The main alternative is that near-death experiences are "evidence of consciousness becoming separated from the physical substrate of the brain, possibly even a glimpse of an afterlife," the University of London's French noted. But for him, at least, "the latest results argue strongly against such a hypothesis."

    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/04/100408-near-death-experiences-blood-carbon-dioxide/
     

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  10. Seeker9

    Seeker9 United Kingdom
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    I usually avoid links but this one has too much text:
    http://www.globalideasbank.org/natdeath/ndh3.html

    I have copied a couple of accounts from children below:

    A nine-year-old tours heaven

    I marvelled at Katie when she came into the office. She was a pretty girl with long blond hair and a shy, frightened manner. Her eyes revealed an intelligence that hadn't been dimmed by the deprivation of oxygen to the brain that always accompanies drowning. There was nothing abnormal in her walk or mannerisms. She was just another nine-year-old kid. Katie clearly remembered me. After introducing myself, she turned to her mother and said, 'That's the one with the beard. First there was this tall doctor who didn't have a beard, and then he came in.' Her statement was correct. The first into the emergency room was a tall, clean-shaven physician named Bill Longhurst.
    Katie remembered more. 'First I was in the big room, and then they moved me to a smaller room where they did X-rays on me.' She accurately noted such details as having 'a tube down my nose', which was her description of nasal intubation. Most physicians intubate orally, and that is the most common way that it is represented on television.
    She accurately described many other details of her experience. I remember being amazed at the events she recollected. Even though her eyes had been closed and she had been profoundly comatose during the entire experience, she still 'saw' what was going on.
    I asked her an open-ended question: 'What do you remember about being in the swimming pool?'
    'Do you mean when I visited the Heavenly Father,' she replied.
    Whoa, I thought. 'That's a good place to start. Tell me about meeting the Heavenly Father.'
    'I met Jesus and the Heavenly Father,' she said. Maybe it was the shocked look on my face or maybe it was shyness. But that was it for the day. She became very embarrassed and would speak no more.
    I scheduled her for another appointment the following week.
    What she told me during our next meeting changed my life. She remembered nothing about the drowning itself. Her first memory was of darkness and the feeling that she was so heavy she couldn't move. Then a tunnel opened and through that tunnel came 'Elizabeth'.
    Elizabeth was 'tall and nice' with bright, golden hair. She accompanied Katie up the tunnel, where she saw her late grandfather and met several other people. Among her 'new friends' were two young boys - 'souls waiting to be born' - named Andy and Mark,who played with her and introduced her to many people.
    At one point in the voyage, Katie was given a glimpse of her home. She was allowed to wander throughout the house, watching her brothers and sisters play with their toys in their rooms. One of her brothers was playing with a GI Joe, pushing him around the room in a jeep. One of her sisters was combing the hair of a Barbie doll and singing a popular rock song.
    Finally, Elizabeth - who seemed to be a guardian angel to Katie - took her to meet the Heavenly Father and Jesus. The Heavenly Father asked if she wanted to go home. Katie cried. She said she wanted to stay with him. Then Jesus asked her if she wanted to see her mother again. 'Yes,' she replied. Then she awoke.
    I didn't understand it. I began to investigate. I probed her family's religious beliefs. I wanted to see if she had been heavily indoctrinated with belief in guardian angels and tunnels to heaven.
    The answer from her mother was an emphatic No.
    My deepest instinct told me that nothing in Katie's experience was'taught' to her before the near drowning. Her experience was fresh, not recalled memory.
    From 'Closer to the Light' by Melvin Morse.
    Morse unearthed a number of other cases where he was convinced that the children's NDEs could not be explained by what they had previously read or heard - including this account by an 11-year-old:

    Out of the body experience of an 11-year-old

    I remember going to that hospital that day. My parents had gone into a room (the admitting office) when suddenly I heard a whooshing sound in my ears. I felt like you feel when you go over a bump in a car going real fast, and you feel your stomach drop out. I heard a buzzing sound in my ears. The next thing I knew, I was in a room, crouched in a corner of the ceiling. I could see my body below me. It was real dark, you know. I could see my body because it was lit up with a light, like there was a light bulb inside me.
    I could see the doctors and nurses working on me. My doctor was there and so was Sandy, one of the nurses. I heard Sandy say, 'I wish we didn't have to do this.'
    I heard a doctor say 'Stand back' and then he pushed a button on one of the paddles. Suddenly, I was back inside my body. One minute I was looking down at my face. I could see the tops of the doctors' heads. After he pushed that button, I was suddenly looking into a doctor's face.
    No, I have never heard of a Near-Death Experience. I don't watch TV much. If I read, I read mostly comic books. No, I didn't tell my parents about it. I don't know why not; I guess I didn't feel like talking about it. I have never heard of anybody having this happen to them. I would not tell my friends about it. They would probably think I was crazy.
    From 'Closer to the Light' by Melvin Morse.

    The overtly Christian references in the first is not what interests me..it's how both appear to be seeing things outside their body when they were physically unconscious..
    ..is there some truth here or are the physicians lying?
     
    #9 Seeker9, Oct 28, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 28, 2010
  11. Seeker9

    Seeker9 United Kingdom
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    More food for thought..
    http://www.near-death.com/hindu.htm

    Near-Death Experiences of Hindus Pasricha and Stevenson's research
    [​IMG]In 1986, researchers Satwant Pasricha and Ian Stevenson, documented 16 cases of Indian near-death experiences in the Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research (77,1 15-135). Their small sample shows, Indian and American near-death experiences resemble each other in some respects but differ in others. Subjects of Indian near-death experiences do not report seeing their own physical body during the near-death experience, although American subjects usually do. Subjects of Indian near-death experiences frequently report being taken to the after-death realm by functionaries who then discover that a mistake has been made and send the person back, whereupon he or she revives. In contrast, American subjects, if they say anything at all about why they revived, mention meeting deceased family members who told them to go back, or say they came back because of ties of love and duty with living persons or say they were told it was not their time to die.
    Many people have asked me (the webmaster) why experiences, such as Hindu near-death experiences, are so different than western ones. The reason is because everyone has their own cultural and religious background by which they see their experience. Jody Long, a near-death researcher with NDERF, has put it best. She said, "One of the near-death experience truths is that each person integrates their near-death experience into their own pre-existing belief system." This important truth must be kept in the back of one's mind when reading these different reports.
    The following Hindu near-death experiences come from Pasricha's and Stevenson's research as well as other sources on near-death experiences in India.
    Vasudev Pandey

    Vasudev Pandey was interviewed in 1975 and again in 1976. He was born in 1921 and had nearly died in his home of what he described as "paratyphoid disease" when he was about 10 years old. Vasudev had been considered dead and his body had actually been taken to the cremation ground. However, some indications of life aroused attention, and Vasudev was removed to the hospital where doctors tried to revive him, using "injections," with eventual success. He remained unconscious for 3 days and then became able to describe the following experience (as narrated to us in 1975):

    "Two persons caught me and took me with them. I felt tired after walking some distance; they started to drag me. My feet became useless. There was a man sitting up. He looked dreadful and was all black. He was not wearing any clothes. He said in a rage [to the attendants who had brought Vasudev] "I had asked you to bring Vasudev the gardener. Our garden is drying up. You have brought Vasudev the student." When I regained consciousness, Vasudev the gardener was standing in front of me [apparently in the crowd of family and servants who had gathered around the bed of the ostensibly dead Vasudev]. He was hale and hearty. People started teasing him saying, "Now it is your turn." He seemed to sleep well in the night, but the next morning he was dead."

    In reply to questions about details, Vasudev said that the "black man" had a club and used foul language. Vasudev identified him as Yamraj, the Hindu god of the dead. He said that he was "brought back" by the same two men who had taken him to Yamraj in the first place. Vasudev's mother (who had died before the time of the interview) had been a pious woman who read scriptures that included descriptions of Yamraj. Vasudev, even as a boy before his near-death experience, was quite familiar with Yamraj.

    Durga Jatav

    Durga Jatav, a man approximately 50 years old, was interviewed in November, 1979, and again 3 months later. About 30 years before, he had been ill for several weeks, suffering from what had been diagnosed as typhoid. When his body "became cold" for a couple of hours, his family thought he had died. He revived, however, and on the third day following this he told his family he had been taken to another place by 10 people. He had tried to escape, but they had then cut off his legs at the knees to prevent his escape. He was taken to a place where there were tables and chairs and 40 or 50 people sitting. He recognized no one. They looked at his "papers," saw that his name was not on their list, and said, "Why have you brought him here? Take him back." To this Durga had replied, "How can I go back? I don't have feet." He was then shown several pairs of legs, he recognized his own, and they were somehow reattached. He was then sent back with the instructions not to "stretch" (bend?) his knees so that they could mend. (Durga's older sister, who was also interviewed, corroborated his account of his apparent death and revival.)

    Durga's sister and a neighbor noticed a few days after he revived that marks had appeared on his knees; there had previously been no such marks there. These folds, or deep fissures, in the skin on the front of Durga's knees were still visible in 1979. There was no bleeding or pain in the knees other than the discomfort engendered by Durga's following the "instructions" to keep his knees in a fixed position. X-ray photographs that we had taken in 1981 showed no abnormality below the surface of the skin.

    Durga had not heard of such experiences before his own near-death experience. He did not see his physical body from some other position in space. He said that afterward the experience seemed like a dream; nevertheless, he claimed that it had strengthened his faith in God.

    One informant for this case (the headman of the village where Durga lived) said that at the time of Durga's experience another person by the same name had died in Agra (about 30 km away); however, neither Durga nor his older sister were able to confirm this statement.

    Chhajju Bania

    Chhajju Bania was interviewed in 1981, at which time he was about 40 years old. His near-death experience had occurred some 6 years earlier. He became ill with fever and his condition deteriorated until he was thought to have died, at which time his relatives began preparing his body for cremation. However, he revived, and he gave the following account of his experience as he remembered it afterward:

    "Four black messengers came and held me. I asked, "Where are you taking me?" They took me and seated me near the god. My body had become small. There was an old lady sitting there. She had a pen in her hand, and the clerks had a heap of books in front of them. I was summoned ... One of the clerks said, "We don't need Chhajju Bania (trader). We had asked for Chhajju Kumhar (potter). Push him back and bring the other man. He (meaning Chhajju Bania) has some life remaining." I asked the clerks to give me some work to do, but not to send me back. Yamraj was there sitting on a high chair with a white beard and wearing yellow clothes. He asked me, "What do you want?" I told him that I wanted to stay there. He asked me to extend my hand. I don't remember whether he gave me something or not. Then I was pushed down [and revived]."

    Chhajju mentioned that he later learned that a person called Chhajju Kumhar had died at about the same time that he (Chhajju Bania) revived. He said that his behavior had changed following his near-death experience, particularly in the direction of his becoming more honest.

    Chhajju's wife, Saroj, remembered her husband's experience, but her account of what he told her about the near-death experience differed in some details from his statement. For example, she said he had told her (about reviving) that at the place to which the four men had taken him there "was a man with a beard with lots of papers in front of him" (not an old lady). The bearded man said, "It is not his turn. Bring Chhajju Kori (a weaver)" (Not Chhajju Kumhar). Other discrepancies between the two accounts concerned unimportant details. Saroj remembered her husband telling her that he had not wanted to leave "there" and that he had been "pushed down" before he revived.

    Mangal Singh

    Mangal Singh was interviewed in March, 1983, when he was 79 years old. He described his near-death experience, which had occurred approximately 5 or 6 years earlier. Unlike most subjects who have had near-death experiences, he was not ill at the time, or did not consider himself to be so. He gave the following description of his experience:

    "I was lying down on a cot when two people came, lifted me up, and took me along. I heard a hissing sound, but I couldn't see anything. Then I came to a gate. There was grass, and the ground seemed to be sloping. A man was there, and he reprimanded the men who had brought me, "Why have you brought the wrong person? Why have you not brought the man you had been sent for?" The two men [who had brought Mangal] ran away, and the senior man said, "You go back." Suddenly I saw two big pots of boiling water, although there was no fire, no firewood, and no fireplace. Then the man pushed me with his hand and said, "You had better hurry up and go back." When he touched me, I suddenly became aware of how hot his hand was. Then I realized why the pots were boiling. The heat was coming from his hands. Suddenly I regained consciousness, and I had a severe burning sensation in my left arm."

    The area developed the appearance of a boil. Mangal showed it to a doctor who applied some ointment. The area healed within 3 days but left a residual mark on the left arm, which was examined.

    In response to questions, Mangal said that he thought that he might have been sleeping at the time of the experience, but he was not sure of this. He was unable to describe the appearance of the persons figuring in the experience. It seemed to be less visual than auditory and tactile. He did remember that the senior "official" had picked up a lathi (a heavy Indian staff) with which he intended to beat the lesser "employees" before they ran away. Another person had died in the locality at or about the time he revived, but Mangal and his family made no inquires about the suddenness of this person's death and did not even learn his name.

    An Analysis of Hindu NDEs

    The Hindu near-death experiences profiled here are typical of the cases studied in India by researchers Satwant Pasricha and Ian Stevenson. The subject does not view his or her physical body, as do many subjects of western near-death experience cases. Instead the subject is taken in hand by "messengers" and brought before a man or woman who is often described as having a book or papers that he or she consults. A mistake is discovered. The wrong person has been "sent for," and this person is then brought back by the messengers to his or her terrestrial life; or the subject is "pushed down" and revives. The error supposedly made is often a slight one, as a person of the same given name but a different caste, or someone living in a different but nearby village, should have died and been brought instead of the subject of the near-death experience. In six of their cases, the informants said that another "correct" person (corresponding to the subject's information from the "next world") did, in fact, die at about the time the subject revived; but the researchers did not verify those deaths.

    In contrast, subjects of western near-death experiences usually give no reason (in psychological terms) for their recovery; if they do give one they may say that they revived because they decided to return of their own accord, often because of love for living members of their family. Sometimes they are "sent back" by deceased persons who tell them their "time has not yet come." Indian subjects sometimes report meeting relatives and friends in the "other realm" in which they find themselves, but these persons have nothing to do or say about the prematurity of the subject's death and a need for him or her to continue living. The idea of prematurity of death, or "your time has not yet come," occurs in the cases of both cultures; but the persons involved in sending the NDEr "back to life" differ.

    All in all, researchers Pasricha and Stevenson uncovered 16 accounts of near-death experiences in India. Later research by Pasricha documented another 29 near-death experiences by people living in India.

    A comparison of Hindu near-death experiences with western accounts reveals the following:

    (1) In 45 Hindu near-death accounts, Pasrich and Stevenson found no evidence of a tunnel experience which is frequently found in western accounts of the near-death experience. However, another near-death researcher, Susan Blackmore, has reported accounts of a tunnel experience in her research of 8 Hindu near-death experiencers.

    (2) Only one account contained an out-of-body experience, which is another aspect that is frequently found in western accounts. Osis and Haraldsson did find several accounts of out-of-body experience in the Indian near-death experiences they researched.

    (3) Consistent with western accounts, some Hindu near-death accounts included a life review. However, whereas in western accounts the life review often consist of seeing a panoramic view of a person's entire life, Hindu accounts consists of having someone read the record of the dying person's life (called the "akashic record"). In Christian circles, this is equivalent to reading from the "Book of Life" as known from Christian doctrine of the resurrection. In Hindu circles, it is a traditional belief that the reading of a person's akashic record occurs immediately after death and this concept is widely believed by Hindus all over India. However, the panoramic life review, which is commonly mentioned in western accounts, does not appear in accounts from India.

    (4) As in western accounts, Hindu near-death accounts sometimes describe the meeting of religious deities and deceased loved ones.

    Near-death researchers, Karlis Osis and Erlendur Haraldsson, documented the first major accounts of near-death experiences in India. In their interviews with 704 people living in India about their near-death experiences, 64 accounts of near-death experiences came to the surface. The remaining accounts had to do with death-bed visions.
     
  12. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    http://www.near-death.com/evidence.html#a1

    NDEs occur while patients are brain dead.


    Cardiologist Michael Sabom described a near-death experience that occurred while its experiencer - a woman who was having an unusual surgical procedure for the safe excision and repair of a large basilar artery aneurysm - met all of the accepted criteria for brain death. The unusual medical procedure involved the induction of hypothermic cardiac arrest, in order to insure that the aneurysm at the base of the brain would not rupture during the operation. The patient's body temperature was lowered to 60 degrees Fahrenheit, her heartbeat and breathing ceased, her brain waves flattened, and the blood was completely drained from her head. Her electroencephalogram was totally flat (indicating no cerebral electrical activity) and auditory evoked potentials (normally elicited by clicks presented through molded earplugs that had been inserted into her ears) ceased (indicating cessation of brainstem functioning). Ordinarily - at regular body temperature - the brain cannot function without its oxygen supply for more than a few minutes. Lowering the body and brain temperature to 60 degrees F. - by chilling the blood in a bypass machine before returning it to the body and brain - however, can reduce cellular metabolism so that the brain can tolerate complete cerebral blood flow for the 45 minutes or so required for the brain operation. The patient later reported that, apparently while under these “brain death” conditions, she had a near-death experience (NDE) in which she was able to observe and hear details of objects and happenings in the operating room with accuracy. She also experienced classic components of the NDE, including a tunnel vortex, a bright light, and different figures in the light (many deceased family members, including a distant cousin of whose death she had been unaware).


    Sources:

    (a) "People Have NDEs While Brain Dead"
    http://www.near-death.com/experiences/evidence01.html

    (b)
    Sabom, M. (1998). Light and Death: One Doctor's Fascinating Account of Near-Death Experiences. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.


    (c)
    Greyson, B. (2000). Near-Death Experiences. In E. Cardena, S. J. Lynn, & S. Krippner (Eds.), Varieties of Anomalous Experience: Examining the Scientific Rvidence (pp. 315-352). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

     
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  13. Seeker9

    Seeker9 United Kingdom
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    I find the comparison between the Western and Eastern NDEs fascinating as I think there are some echoes of the relative religious beliefs in the actual NDEs people experience. So those brought up in a Christian faith see Jesus for example. Those brought up in an eastern faith with an emphasis on Karma and being judged have a different sort of experience where they appear to see an individual who might say it's the wrong person and send them back etc

    So what could be happening here?

    I like to think the first part of leaving the body and looking down on oneself etc refers to that thing we call The Soul

    The other stuff about meeting religious or other figures could be explained away by the subconscious coming into play and trying to explain things using one's own belief systems

    I was trying to Google NDEs for really young children (under 4s) but didn't find anything

    I remember watching a documentary some years ago and interestingly enough, the pictures they drew had tunnels and light and rainbows and love hearts etc but no figureheads....which would make sense as they have not yet been indoctrinated with all that religious stuff and this would tie in nicely with my theory above...

    So what do you think is actually going on here???
     
  14. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    I used to read so much about Paranormal Nde's etc.The only thing I could say is that
    No one can exactly tell What is going on.It could be in mind it could be Out of body experiance.Science can explain few cases but not all.

    BTW if you understand Hindi you can watch following dramatised presentation
    of NDE/OBE

    http://www.startv.in/video/?17_1_Introduction-to-astral-travel
     
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