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Oh my god I love death bed visions! Thank you so much for calling it to my attention. Muchas gracias!

Hi,

Found out about your blog via My Big TOE forum and linked to your blog post on VR theory in Aug '10.

It's been a while since I've perused your site but have is bookmarked in order to find your 'Why I am not a skeptic' piece which I'm still looking for.

Reason for this post is to give you a head's up in case you haven't come across Raymond Moody's work on 'Shared Death experiences'. You might find some value in it.

Thanks, RBM. You can find the "not a skeptic" essay here:

http://michaelprescott.net/skeptic.htm

I found Moody's book on SDEs pretty interesting. I mentioned some other, earlier SDEs here:

http://tinyurl.com/4zfft38

I'm afraid I couldn't get through My Big TOE, though.

It could be the case that a large percentage of deathbed visions are unpleasant. Indeed perhaps most of them are unpleasant. Read the post from emsboss and some of the posts afterwards in the following link.

http://allnurses.com/general-nursing-discussion/death-bed-visions-301825.html

I do think that NDEs and DBV's provide compelling evidence for an afterlife. But if I'm totally honest I think these unpleasant experiences are a bit problematic for the survival hypothesis.

"It could be the case that a large percentage of deathbed visions are unpleasant. Indeed perhaps most of them are unpleasant."

Why do you say "most", Ian? The books and studies I've seen say just the opposite.

"If I'm totally honest I think these unpleasant experiences are a bit problematic for the survival hypothesis."

Well, they correlate well with the fact that a certain percentage of NDErs report hellish experiences. And interestingly, experiences that begin in a nightmarish way, often become blissful as the event progresses.

What's more, people who have hellish NDE's are as convinced of survival as those who have more positive ones. And, it's my impression (though I could be wrong) that in general, they're as grateful for their experience as other NDErs.

One thing seems certain: they're eager to make lifestyle changes. :o)

Thanks for the link to the nurses' forum. Interesting thread, at least at first. Unfortunately it devolves into yet another argument with a skeptic, with the predictable back-and-forth. From what I read, it seemed as if the great majority of DBVs observed by the nurses were positive, with only a handful that were negative. I don't see any grounds for imagining that most or even very many of these experiences are unpleasant, though doubtless a few of them are.

The Emperor Augustus is said to have had a nightmarish DBV just as he was passing away. He had been calm up to that point, but suddenly cried out in terror that 40 young men were coming to carry him off. Given his many crimes, especially in the early years of his rise to power, he may have had good reason to be scared!

Negative NDEs and Death bed visions are easy to explain. If you are afraid going into it, terrified of dying and death like Howard Storm was, you are liable to initially be afraid and believe that the people who are "coming for you" are evil people. It is our own perspective that dictates how we feel (initially) about the beginings of the experience.

I have read a plethora of death bed visions and I've read about old people yelling at the angels or deceased relatives that have come to help them cross over to the other side. They are afraid of dying. Perhaps they are like some of my fundamentalist Christian friends that are afraid that they haven't been good enough to be "saved."

I however have a high degree of confidence that after we cross over, once we make contact with the Light, we are healed, and become connected to "all that is." Whatever we focus our attention on, that is what we will experience. Because the LIGHT encompasses everything.

@Art I don't think the people who have hell like experiences in NDEs and DBV's are simply having the same intrinsic experience as pleasant NDEs/DBVs but interpreting it differently. This does occur, but people also have real hell-like experiences. And possibly they are far more common than we suppose. What possible purpose do these experiences have?

Looking at this page:
http://www.nderf.org/evidence/Frightening_NDEs.htm

It states: "Consistent with the aftereffects of pleasant NDEs, Dr. Rommer found those experiencing frightening NDEs often had substantial positive life changes, including a greatly reduced fear of death. Moreover, some individuals experiencing frightening NDEs came to view the experiences as a gift, and perhaps the most important experience of their lives".

This is just bizarre! Surely such experiences would vastly increase ones fear of death, not reduce it!

Heaven is a place where thoughts are things and consciousness creates reality. Howard Storm was an atheist living in Kentucky, a bible belt state. I'm sure he was shocked finding himself outside his physical body after it died and perhaps afraid. All of sudden he thought of how self centered he had lived his life. By his own admission he was not a good person.

Storm turned his hate, jealousy, anger, rage, selfishness, disbelief into demons and had to overcome them before he could enter the Light. At the moment when he called out to the Light it appeared and reached out and rescued Howard Storm from all those demons he had stored up inside himself.

Coming from a bible belt state he most assuredly exposed to those fundamentalist pentacostal beliefs about Hell and demons. It really doesn't matter what we say we believe. Those memories are there buried and hidden in our psyche and when the time comes they can float to the top and we might have to deal with them. Belief or disbelief is irrelevant.

You remember in grade school when you were being taught? The teacher never asked if you believed her or not. You were just told this is the way it is and when the time came you had to regurgitate the information back on a test. Agreement or disagreement was irrelevant. When and if you needed the information it was there to be used.

If you don't believe in life after death I believe you might find yourself a disembodied consciousness floating in black nothingness - which is what one might expect to find if deep down inside you didn't really believe in life after death. But then you might be perplexed as to why you still have a consciousness after you die? Why are you still thinking? It might be quite perplexing.

A.J. Ayer was steeped in metaphors about the afterlife, the river Styx, etc. After his "soul" popped out of his body it used those metaphors for death and he conjured up what he thought the afterlife might be. It doesn't have to be voluntary. Buried deep down in our subconscious are all kinds of memories that are readily available to conjure up some kind of afterlife using the principal of thoughts being things and consciousness creating reality. Heaven might be a place where matter is an epiphenomena of consciousness, where consciousness is primary and matter is secondary.

And more than likely belief is irrelevant at that point.

"Surely such experiences would vastly increase ones fear of death, not reduce it!"

I read Rommer's book about hellish NDEs, "Blessing in Disguise." The idea was that these NDErs learned from their experience and became better people. As a result, they became convinced that a higher power was looking after them and giving them exactly a lesson they needed.

Drat. Meant to type "exactly THE lesson they needed." But you knew that.

OH... MY...GOD... funny (sorry I guess I have dark humor this way)
when NDE's conflict each other
http://tinyurl.com/4lujmxs

Two kids have NDE's...the first kid see's all the proper Christian stuff Jesus, John the Baptist, angels, etc etc AND has a veridical element the town folks go crazy thus proving church doctrine so on and so forth ..... but then a while later a little girl has a NDE with a veridical element only she has a more new age type of NDE completely contradicting the other NDE
Buddha, Gay people, Jesus all loving and excepting of everyone... so of course the fundy's think she must be making hers up or went to hell and got tricked! I mean somebody's got to suffer and burn or whats the point of it all??... sheesh I swear I thought I was reading the Weekly World News at first yet as far as I can tell this is a real story


(besides why cant they BOTH be correct??)
we make our own reality in a way right?
very interesting...
-Marty

That reminds me of the book 90 Minutes in Heaven, by Don Piper. Piper, a fundamentalist Christian, had a very Christian NDE, complete with "pearlescent" gates and choirs of angels singing hymns. This led him to believe that he had seen Heaven. But he still maintains that most other NDEs are false, because they are "not Biblical."

"sheesh I swear I thought I was reading the Weekly World News at first yet as far as I can tell this is a real story"

Marty, it's a joke. I just spent a little time on that site, and it's sort of an Onion impersonator. Funny article, though, and I fell for it too for the longest time.

Too bad, actually. I LIKE that 14-year-old's NDE. :o)

"But he still maintains that most other NDEs are false, because they are 'not Biblical'"

What a lucky guy he is to have had a REAL NDE as opposed to those phony ones so many other people have been subjected to. There seems to be a regular epidemic of them!

"it's sort of an Onion impersonator."

I hadn't looked at the link till now. The article starts out in a believable way, but becomes increasingly silly as it goes on. The funny thing is that the ecumenical New Age views described by the fictional teenage girl actually dovetail pretty well with the outlook of many NDErs.

"""Marty, it's a joke. I just spent a little time on that site, and it's sort of an Onion impersonator. Funny article, though, and I fell for it too for the longest time."""

DOH!! funny! I promise to pay closer attention next time! it is funny now that I look at as satire :)

''' But he still maintains that most other NDEs are false, because they are "not Biblical."'''

I guess that's why I bought into this "article" hook line and sinker! is because it seems to be a common theme amongst the Christian NDE scoffers
I should of known it was a joke when the boy talked about "Angels with wings on their backs"!
DR Melvin Morse wrote that one of the credible details with children who have had NDE's is the claim that Angels in their NDE's do NOT have wings, as one would expect provided the child was perhaps hallucinating or made up the story based on what religious social ideas he/she may have had or learned from their church or Sunday school...

-Marty

"That reminds me of the book 90 Minutes in Heaven, by Don Piper. Piper, a fundamentalist Christian, had a very Christian NDE, complete with 'pearlescent' gates and choirs of angels singing hymns. This led him to believe that he had seen Heaven. But he still maintains that most other NDEs are false, because they are 'not Biblical.'"

For what it's worth, during my one and only LSD trip (at age 15) I hallucinated extremely, multicolor patterns. Wow, just like those 1960s psychedelic posters, I mused, then noticed that, in fact, they appeared to be drawn in pen and ink then filled in with watercolor. So, the mind really does see what it expects to see.

I also saw God, by the way. He's a giant, smoky-black cone beyond normal time and space, orbited by stars, which are souls. I'm not trying to be either snide or credulous about this vision. It's what I saw, though I don't incorporate it into my (conventionally Christian) religious beliefs.

I went to church the next day and found the service incredibly vivid and moving. So, I don't know what to think. I would say that the ostensible truths presented by psychedelic experience are (probably) so much B.S., but that some elements or effects of the experience are not.

Somehow I get the feeling that this boy was coached by his father, who seemed strongly motivated to put a Christian slant on his son's NDE.

As for negative NDEs, I tend to gravitate toward the perspective of Anthony Borgia's "Life in the World Unseen." That is, what's in our heart is what we get. If we're stingy and greedy in this life, our accommodations in the Afterlife will be the same. I suppose if we act terrible and frightening to other people, we may also expect the same. Interestingly, I got a hold of book from the 1940s that was supposedly written using automatic writing. The widow was informed by her deceased husband that Borgia's book most closely described what the Afterlife was like.

I generally go by Borgia's book, too, whether or not it's the real deal it makes the most sense of anything. As far as I can tell, there are lots, and lots, of different planes. These religious folk have their own planes as well. Jehovah's Witnesses probably have a plane where a big, angry god casts people into fire all day.

When one of these guys has an NDE, they go to that particular plane... then they come back to tell the story, and think their experience was the whole deal on reality... although, it's a bit of a cosmic dog and pony show.

Anyone who has spent much time in the presence of the dying knows without doubt that there is a absolute unmistakable difference in fever- or drug-induced hallucinations and a true DBE or "deathbed vision". The difference is that the dying person experiencing the former almost always is confused, agitated, uneasy or even frightened. Spoken words are usually incoherent or unintelligible, and if more than a phrase or two, are very non-linear.

But the DBE is, to me, medically inexplicable. Moribund or even comatose patients seem to awaken. While they don't always open their eyes oftentimes they do and seem to be looking at something in the room, They sound conscious and alert to who and where they are and what is happening to them. I have never seen a DBE case where the experiencer is troubled or frightened; but instead they appear peaceful, happy, even joyous or sometimes rapturous. They report seeing family members long dead, and scenes of joy and love and rejoicing.

A DBE is a tremendously moving and humbling experience, and such an honor to witness. I feel very sorry for those whose belief in the physical is so exclusive and hidebound that it most resembles expression of the very religious faith it rejects. It is so sad that researchers, doctors and other apologists for the material won't allow themselves to see what is before their eyes in a DBE. I'm afraid they start with the scientifically unsupportable position that "only the material exists", which necessitates a finding that any evidence appearing to the contrary must have a physical and material explanation.

Sardondi that was a very nice uplifting and positive post. I am love reading about death bed visions. Thank you.

I heard a woman in church (my friend Carey) last week telling me about her mother's death bed visions. As the mother was in the process of dying she told them that "Bernie" was there. Bernie was her brother that had been dead for twenty years. I'm betting that Bernie had come to her death bed to help cross over in heaven.

Thanks, Sardondi. Very nice comment.

Good insights, Sardondi. You speak with authority—are you a doctor or nurse or do you do other work that puts you in contact with people who are dying?

Jeg elsker denne post - helt kewl! Godt gået! Jeg kommer tilbage til denne ene ...

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