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“We may just have to accept the fact that no objective proof can actually be attained in this area.”

I am glad you used the word “may” because I don’t believe we are to ever accept any fact that anything is not provable. It may not feel like it can be provable but feelings are very deceptive. Also those even those advanced spirits that come through mediums predicting the future appears to have been wrong much more than being right.

We don’t know what the future will hold for our planet. The day may come when the human species will be able to do telepathic communication with the other side or the next dimensions or plane of existence. Of course if nature continues to give us new souls this planet may just stay a seed for new soul development.

When I discovered that the Buddha’s realization that the origin of suffering was ignorance I set out on a journey to see if I could discover the origin of that ignorance. Most did not even believe that the origin of our ignorance was a valid question. Many thought when I mentioned that I was doing research into the origin of ignorance that the origin of ignorance was some kind of joke.

Well I did discover the origin of ignorance and plan on writing about it. If I had listened to Buddhist monks and Hindu monks that told me that the origin of ignorance was unknowable I would have never made this discovery.

I believe that objective proof has been established in several areas such as physical manifestations and different types of trance mediumship such as direct voice. There appears to be a very significant reason that these difference planes of existence are not able to easily communicate between these planes or dimensions.

“But those who are hoping for some slam-dunk, irrefutable, objective proof that will render all skepticism obsolete may be dreaming an impossible dream.”

What I think most are looking for is a materialist proof of an after life rather than proof that lies in the realm of consciousness. Consciousness is the essence that connects these different planes or dimensions.

To quote my favorite intelligence:

“There is however a common dimension or factor that exists and forms a connection on all planes. It is the continuous chain or thread that runs through all manifestations and beyond manifestations. It is Consciousness the underlying reality behind all appearance, the real Self within.”

"What I think most are looking for is a materialist proof of an after life rather than proof that lies in the realm of consciousness."

Yes, but proof that lies in the realm of consciousness is necessarily subjective, because consciousness is subjective.

"I believe that objective proof has been established in several areas such as physical manifestations and different types of trance mediumship such as direct voice."

Those phenomena may be objective, but the persistence of an individual's consciousness remains a matter of inference, not direct perception. It may be a very plausible inference, but it is still an inference. If we can only infer (not prove) a state of consciousness even in living people of our acquaintance, how can we expect to prove it when dealing with a materialized entity?

A related question, which I didn't deal with in the post, is what we mean by "objective." It could be argued that an objective fact is simply one that has been registered by multiple subjective perceptions. Maybe "objectivity" is more like "consensual subjectivity" ...

Deep waters indeed!

“Deep waters indeed!”

Very deep waters. It gets into something the Buddhists call knowing and a knowing beyond knowing. Knowing leaves us with doubts but a knowing beyond knowing removes all doubt. Now most people whether it be atheists or religious claim they have removed all doubts. But their actions give them away.

As the Sufi stated on the cross in about the 12th century as they were killing him for his views he kept yelling at those killing him “you don’t understand you cannot kill me” over and over. I suspect he had a knowing beyond knowing.

Now we with just a knowing status of life after death require much more so called objective evidence to remove our lingering doubts. And for most of us there will always be some level of doubt until we reach a level of a knowing beyond knowing. That knowing beyond knowing comes to us as a realization not through the intellect or objective evidence.

Scientists will try to convince you that that knowing beyond knowing comes through the intellect and scientific process but they have little understanding of consciousness and awareness. Their knowing has turned into for most of them as scientism and have no doubts scientism like atheism is a religion in almost every sense.

Again a knowing comes to us in the realm of the intellect and a knowing beyond knowing comes to us in the realm of awareness and understanding by the vehicle, awaking, process of a realization.

When Jesus or whoever said love your enemies, what did he or they know that we do not know? It appears from that statement he not only saw the ignorance in our enemies and us but he saw the underlying reality or origin of that ignorance which is innocence.

Instead we have taken that teaching and turned it into some kind of fairy airy religious statement and not practical but only in our own ignorance, which of course has its origin in our innocence. We think it is fairy airy because we lack understanding and our existing paradigm causes us to make a slur statement so it does not have to deal with or threaten our existing paradigm. Paradigms are hidden from our view.

How can we forgive, truly forgive without seeing that innocence? Also how can we have compassion without seeing that innocence? As I have experienced compassion and understanding during a “visitation” and then during that visitation a life review and experience that understanding which allows compassion; this is a thing to behold and beyond mere words.

Once we experience such compassion we begin to realize that most of what we call compassion in this world is either sympathy or empathy with a whole lot of apathy in the mix.

How can one provide objective evidence for what I experienced? This is the role of experience it allows us to see for ourselves. Those that state that all experiences are an illusion and not worthwhile understand little about the evolution of consciousness process and that we are expressions of that that is. It is the underlying reality of experiences, which are phenomena that develops the soul.

I have always maintained that we can never obtain proof of the continuity of life only evidence.

It is the accumulation of evidence which become proof to the seeker but not to anyone else.

William wrote: I believe that objective proof has been established in several areas such as physical manifestations and different types of trance mediumship such as direct voice.

You may have a belief but have you had any personal experience of direct voice or full form materialisation to back up your belief?

"At best it suggests a very strong probability of life after death, but it has not clinched the case. Why?" - Michael Prescott
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I think it's that way for a reason. Losing someone we love is the ultimate lesson in separation and if we knew 100% absolutely for certain that one day we were going to be reunited forever with that person death would lose some of it's power over us as a lesson in separation. And like I've said before, I believe that one of the main reasons why we are here to experience separation. Can't learn it there so we have to learn it here.

There is plenty of objective proof available. You just have to be dead to obtain it.

Can I throw this out there, what about slam dunk proof for annihilation?

Imagine in 100 years if / when brain mapping (who knows how this technology will evolve), allows to predict every minutiae of human behaviour in advance (therefore destroying the concept of free will), and is able to give a reasonably good account of consciousness in materialistic terms (maybe strong AI will have something to contribute). Highly sophisticated imaging of people at death shows exact pathways responsible for the common experiences, etc, etc. Could obliteration be proved? In logical terms you can't prove a negative, but maybe you can come damn close?

“You may have a belief but have you had any personal experience of direct voice or full form materialisation to back up your belief?”

I failed to communicate my thoughts so let me try again.

“We may just have to accept the fact that no objective proof can actually be attained in this area.”

“Actually, I have started to think it is probably impossible, even in principle, ever to obtain objective proof of life after death.”

These are the two statements I was referring to which I did a poor job of making this known that I believe that objective proof exists that life after death exists.

These statements state that we must accept the fact that no objective proof can actually be attained in this area and it is impossible even in principle even to obtain objective proof of life after death. Ever is close to never and we all have learned to be careful with this word never as it has caught me many times in my own errors in many of my statements in life.

I stated that I believe that objective proof has been obtained. I used the word believe not I know or I have experienced this objective proof such as direct voice or manifestations.

I believe that objective proof has been obtained and we do not have to accept the fact that no objective proof can ever be obtained. It may never be obtained for us in this life but it may be for others. It is one thing to state that no objective proof has been obtained and another to state that we will have to accept the fact that no objective proof can be attained.

“Highly sophisticated imaging of people at death shows exact pathways responsible for the common experiences, etc, etc.”


As far as I know brain mapping does not have an answer for many of the paranormal evidence that has occurred. Brain mapping may show a path but that proves nothing about the consciousness that takes that path.

You may want to focus your research on consciousness and awareness those sticky not so materialistic hard problems.

William, I'm imagining a future in which we know magnitudes more about brain functioning than we do now through exponential advances in technology. Could you come close to disproving an afterlife if all we hold dear about being ourselves is capable of being quantified in materialistic terms?

"Can I throw this out there, what about slam dunk proof for annihilation?" - Michael Duggan
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So how does this account for the connection between NDE's and the holographic universe theory and quantum physics? People who have NDE's routinely come back and describe their experiences in terms that seem to corroborate and parallel what Michael Talbot wrote about in The Holographic Universe? Saying they felt an overwhelming feeling of oneness and connectedness, that they literally felt like they were everywhere in the Universe at once, that time and space didn't seem to exist, and during the life review they felt like they actually became the other people they interacted with, thinking their thoughts and feeling their feelings, and they "saw" their former lives holographically, and that they could see in 360 degrees all at once, that they had all knowledge, and that information was instantly downloaded into their brains in a bolus of information, and that they simply thought of a thing and they were there, and that buildings seemed to be made of knowledge. All these things parallel what some physicists have written about in numerous Popular Physics books. I find it ming boggling that a housewife from Kansas or a truck driver from South Georgia might know enough about the holographic universe theory or quantum physics to say things that seem to come straight out of these books. It can't be a coincidence. Something really amazing and strange is going on here and I find that to be very evidential.

Excellent post Michael.

I think in this topic we could make some distinctions:

-Proof, in the sense of conclusive or absolute demostration, is only posible in formal sciences like logic or mathemathics.

For example, 2+2=4 is not a question of evidence, but of absolute proof: once you understand the concept of 2, the concept of "+", the concept of "4", and the inferential rules, the result is absolutely true.

-Evidence, in empirical science, is a matter of degree.

Another important qualification is that what is subject of evidence are propositions about the facts, not the facts themselves.

What is proved or not, supported by evidence or not, are our propositions about the facts, not the facts themselves.

But for the argument's sake, let us to call "facts" to the propositions about the facts.

Now the question arises, is "life after death" a fact or a theory, or both? Is that a particular proposition, or an universal one?

I think it's both, a fact and a theory, a particular proposition and an universal one.

As a fact, it cannot be proved "to others" because as Michael argues, consciousness is subjective. And subjectivity, by definition, cannot be supported empirically because it is not subject to sensory perception or experience.

But we can have a direct "personal" and "subjective" proof of it: if we survive after our death.

As a theory, it could be supported by an inference to the best explanation, exactly as we accept scientific theories.

In conclusion, absolute proof is possible only after each person's death and only subjectively.

Not absolute, but reasonably convincing evidence, is possible if the best afterlife evidence suggest the afterlife hypothesis as the best explanation.

"But those who are hoping for some slam-dunk, irrefutable, objective proof that will render all skepticism obsolete may be dreaming an impossible dream"

I think very few people will think that evidence alone will render skepticism obsolete.

Skepticism, at least of the pseudo-skeptical type, is an ideology, not a truth-seeking enterprise.

If the "skeptic" asks for absolute proof of survival to believe in it, he'll be applying a double standard, because most of the beliefs that support his ideology (materialism, naturalism, darwinism) are not based on absolute proofs either, but mostly in inferences, (questionable) assumptions about the fabric of reality, and intense animosity against the spiritual.

“William, I'm imagining a future in which we know magnitudes more about brain functioning than we do now through exponential advances in technology”

This statement reminds me of the atheist on reason project where the person stated that although they have no explanation for consciousness yet but this person was sure they would figure it all out in the 21st century. Now consciousness is one thing then we have an awareness of being aware.

I applaud learning more about brain functioning the more we can learn about the human body this will help the human species be more productive and beneficial. But when we pick a future date to prove our theory that is not science that is wishful thinking to prove a point. If we look at history predicting the future has not been that successful.

If I stated that in the 21st century that we will prove that God exists and is sitting on a golden throne the atheists would go nuts on that one but they do the same thing with their scientism based in materialism saying with new technology we will solve this hard problem in the future.

I imagine in the future that new technology we will be able to contact this other dimension closest to the physical dimension.

The key word there is imagining. Lots of religious folks do a lot of imagining like flying through tall buildings and think there will be 72 virgins waiting for them. What the mullahs don’t tell them is the virgins must remain virgin for eternity. Look but don’t touch.

“If the "skeptic" asks for absolute proof of survival to believe in it, he'll be applying a double standard, because most of the beliefs that support his ideology (materialism, naturalism, darwinism) are not based on absolute proofs either, but mostly in inferences, (questionable) assumptions about the fabric of reality, and intense animosity against the spiritual.”

Good point and well stated. Darwinism has large enough gaps in it that an aircraft carrier could sail through or is it motor through. Ultra skepticism combined with scientism is religious fundamentalism just with a different set of beliefs.

I read somewhere that both so-called proofs and evidence for Darwinism during the scopes monkey trial were later found to be invalid examples of Darwinism.

William wrote: I believe that objective proof has been obtained and we do not have to accept the fact that no objective proof can ever be obtained.

That is simply a restatement of your previous post. Have you actually had any personal evidence to support your belief?

If so, please tell me and give examples. If not, fair enough. I will accept that it is only a belief.

There are many beliefs based upon what other people have written, in books
holy or otherwise.

zetetic chick adds needed points to an otherwise perfect post...
I love reading this stuff!!

“It may never be obtained for us in this life but it may be for others. It is one thing to state that no objective proof has been obtained and another to state that we will have to accept the fact that no objective proof can be attained.”

It is one thing to state that one believes that no objective proof has been obtained and quite another to state that we will have to accept the fact that no objective proof can ever be obtained.

Can you see the difference in those two statements? It is the word ever which suggests never. We cannot state what never will occur. Have you heard of the statement never say never?

“That is simply a restatement of your previous post. Have you actually had any personal evidence to support your belief?”

I do not believe it was a reinstatement of my previous post. I believe we are failing to communicate like Paul Newman stated in a movie right before they shot him.

I have personal evidence of the paranormal nature that occurs in my life often. Just yesterday something happened that stunned me as to what occurred. I asked for some kind of proof of a certain person was coming through to me in the part few months and then something occurred that the odds of that occurring are nil to none. But the materialist of course will just state it was a accident or coincidence.

But this is not my point I am not talking about evidence or lack of evidence we cannot say we must accept as fact that no objective proof can be attained. This is not about beliefs it is about making a statement that we must accept something in the future because we cannot predict the future as to what will be fact and not fact.

When it comes to the future we cannot accept anything as fact especially what will we will attain and not attain.

I don’t know how else to explain this other than I am stating that we cannot make such a statement of what is going to occur or never to occur when it comes to knowledge or proof in the future.

Now I have all kinds of beliefs that I think will happen in the future concerning paranormal phenomena but those are beliefs and not facts. This is not a put down of the post it is an excellent post and is receiving much attention and dialog.

"We cannot state what never will occur." - William

We can, in cases involving a logical impossibility. For instance, we can say there will never be a married bachelor.

What I'm suggesting is that we can never have objective proof of the persistence of a subjective state.

We can have objective proof of the persistence of behavior that appears to be the product of, or to be correlated with, a subjective state.

But I don't see how it is logically possible to have objective proof of a subjective state per se. If it is logically impossible, it will never happen. It's not a matter of obtaining more or better evidence; it's a philosophical issue.

I do think it is possible for someone to be personally convinced of life after death, and to feel it has been proven on a personal level. Many NDErs say they have no doubt whatsoever of life after death. But their experience (which is subjective) constitutes only evidence, not proof, for the rest of us.

"I think very few people will think that evidence alone will render skepticism obsolete." - ZC

Some people do appear to be looking for blockbuster evidence that will dispel all doubt. For instance, there are those who seem to think the AWARE study of NDEs will resolve the whole issue once and for all.


I agree with MP – ultimately, all is subjective. Evidence:

ZC said: 2+2=4 is an absolute proof. I don’t agree. It’s very cold here in the UK, and I’ve just cut up two long logs. I made 2 cuts in each, and got 6 fire-sized logs. Therefore in this case, 2+2 = 6.

MP said: Married bachelors are impossible.

What happens when a man called “Bachelor” gets married?
"Bachelor" can also refer to someone holding a "bachelor's degree" from a university…and he can get married.

“But I don't see how it is logically possible to have objective proof of a subjective state per se”

This I agree with but life after death is not just a subjective state. These other dimensions also reveal phenomena for others to see and experience and therefore validate. These phenomena are not subjective.

Of course we could go deep and state that all phenomena is subject but then nothing is provable in the realm of phenomena. I suspect most people will state that the universe is proof that something we call matter exists in the universe.

Now a phenomena or a phenomenon is observable and can be as valid of proof as looking though the Hubble telescope just as seeing an entity in the astral world. We therefore cannot state that we can never have objective proof of life after death as we might be able to observe this other side or worlds with some type of new technology.

Who can predict one hundred years from now.

We cannot state what we cannot do in the future when it comes to phenomena as phenomena is observable and not just subjective. Now our interpretation of that phenomenon is subjective depending on our state of consciousness but this is another dialog I think.

I continue this dialog because many people read this blog and may read this statement and walk away thinking well we can never have proof of life after death. We don’t know in the future what we are capable of. We may come up with some new science or technology that can view thoughts and communication with the other side.

Because I believe the universe and consciousness is intelligent I suspect it is best at this stage our evolutionary process that we don’t communicate and have proof so to speak with these other dimensions. I suspect greater lessons are learned not having this proof as art writes about on here.

“I agree with MP – ultimately, all is subjective. Evidence:”

This is different then what they are saying. If one wants to state that all is subjective then nothing is provable. In this scenario then I agree that life after death can never be proven. But the statement was that proof of life after death may not ever be proven not that all phenomena cannot be proven or that all is subjective and therefore cannot be proven. And Michael used the word may which of course does not say it is impossible but may not be possible.

Trying to communicate in written word is so difficult; I am reminded when I “experienced” telepathic communication on the other side and there was what appeared to be perfect communication. Once we experience telepathic communication this written word of communication at least for me sucks.

William my original question was in response to your post: I believe that objective proof has been established in several areas such as physical manifestations and different types of trance mediumship such as direct voice.

I asked if you had any evidence to support your belief . If you haven't simply say you haven't and that will be the end of the matter. If you have I would be pleased to read it.

For the record I am not really interested in semantics or lengthy explanations which tell me nothing.

Thanks in anticipation.

“I asked if you had any evidence to support your belief . If you haven't simply say you haven't and that will be the end of the matter. If you have I would be pleased to read it.”

In this journey I have found it does no good to present evidence. It will only be discounted or stated as coincidence or whatever. As my former “guru” stated it does no good to share you pearls with others for they will only demean them.

The problem with that statement is every one thinks they have pearls to offer. So I usually don’t share personal phenomena with most but to a few close friends.

Just yesterday I had something occur that the odds of it occurring would be about nil to none.

It is my belief that life after death has been proven with phenomena such as materialistic and direct voice. But I intended to write that we cannot make the statement that life after death is ever not provable which Michael did say may not be provable.

I failed to communicate.

“For the record I am not really interested in semantics or lengthy explanations which tell me nothing.”

Wars are fought over semantics. Communication using words is troublesome at best once telepathic communication is experienced.

Below I thought I would include one of your short explanations. It is one thing when another writes a long explanation but quite another when we do. The human mind is an interesting phenomenon isn’t it?

Excellent post Michael.
“I think in this topic we could make some distinctions:
-Proof, in the sense of conclusive or absolute demostration, is only posible in formal sciences like logic or mathemathics.
For example, 2+2=4 is not a question of evidence, but of absolute proof: once you understand the concept of 2, the concept of "+", the concept of "4", and the inferential rules, the result is absolutely true.
-Evidence, in empirical science, is a matter of degree.
Another important qualification is that what is subject of evidence are propositions about the facts, not the facts themselves.
What is proved or not, supported by evidence or not, are our propositions about the facts, not the facts themselves.
But for the argument's sake, let us to call "facts" to the propositions about the facts.
Now the question arises, is "life after death" a fact or a theory, or both? Is that a particular proposition, or an universal one?
I think it's both, a fact and a theory, a particular proposition and an universal one.
As a fact, it cannot be proved "to others" because as Michael argues, consciousness is subjective. And subjectivity, by definition, cannot be supported empirically because it is not subject to sensory perception or experience.
But we can have a direct "personal" and "subjective" proof of it: if we survive after our death.
As a theory, it could be supported by an inference to the best explanation, exactly as we accept scientific theories.
In conclusion, absolute proof is possible only after each person's death and only subjectively.
Not absolute, but reasonably convincing evidence, is possible if the best afterlife evidence suggest the afterlife hypothesis as the best explanation.
"But those who are hoping for some slam-dunk, irrefutable, objective proof that will render all skepticism obsolete may be dreaming an impossible dream"
I think very few people will think that evidence alone will render skepticism obsolete.
Skepticism, at least of the pseudo-skeptical type, is an ideology, not a truth-seeking enterprise.
If the "skeptic" asks for absolute proof of survival to believe in it, he'll be applying a double standard, because most of the beliefs that support his ideology (materialism, naturalism, darwinism) are not based on absolute proofs either, but mostly in inferences, (questionable) assumptions about the fabric of reality, and intense animosity against the spiritual.”

"It’s very cold here in the UK, and I’ve just cut up two long logs. I made 2 cuts in each, and got 6 fire-sized logs. Therefore in this case, 2+2 = 6"

Very funny, Ben.

William, if you're going to quote my whole post, please give me credit for it!

;)

"For instance, there are those who seem to think the AWARE study of NDEs will resolve the whole issue once and for all."

Kris' best friend, a guy called "Keith", is one of them. According to his own public admission in this blog, a positive result in the Aware study will convince him of an afterlife.

(Just kidding Kris and Keith)

Personally, I think a positive result will confirm the afterlife hypothesis as the best explanation to many cases of NDEs. But a negative result won't refute the afterlife hypothesis in general since there are exist other kind of evidence for survival; although it would undermine that hypothesis as an explanation for NDEs in particular.

"Imagine in 100 years if / when brain mapping (who knows how this technology will evolve), allows to predict every minutiae of human behaviour in advance (therefore destroying the concept of free will), and is able to give a reasonably good account of consciousness in materialistic terms (maybe strong AI will have something to contribute)."

Michael you are missing something. Why do specific areas fire on your 'brain map'? Because YOU (which cannot be observed) WANT (a desire which also cannot be observed) to see, to remember, to think and to hear. We map the results of our desires, but never the cause of our desires or the desires themselves.
And what is being mapped? Electrical flows that are always at the same voltage. How do you reconcile the endless variation of human experience,thought and perception in every age and every language with these identical flows of electrons and the same chemical deposits. Yes, the location of these pathways are different, but the content of the pathways is not. Who translates these identical electrons and identical chemicals into the endless variety of specific memories and perceptions and thoughts that each of us have? The brain assists us in defining and recording our experience, but it does not experience our experience.

Also, free will is not so much a matter of what we do and what happens to us, but how we are able to experience these events, the context in which we hold our experience.

Just for the record

I do not hate Keith or anything. I mean if I saw him on fire I would put him out, if he had a headache I would give him medicine , think you get the idea....

About the Aware study. This is my take. Evidence has already been produced that people can have for a lack of better word " non normal" perception during NDEs. The only question is how and if the explanation of normal perception can work (personally I do not think it can).

Now the Aware Study can have three outcomes

1.) Patients see the target- Game over for the skeptics

2.) they can describe their medical operations but miss the targets. This is a distinct possibility even if it is true consciousness does leave the body. After all it is easy to miss something if you are not looking for it. I think the outcome is a tie then, but if you get a few more Pam Reynolds type cases this is going to really stretch the credibility of skeptical explanations. Keith's explanations on Reynolds are at best very very unlikely and if he our someone else had to create a few more like that then that would destroy the credibility of their position. Truth be told the Reynolds case is painful enough.

3.) No accurate descriptions of surgeries no hitting targets. This would be very hard for a paranormal explanation but we would have older studies that seem to support our view. Basically try again later.

4.) No hit targets numerous errors in surgery details. Complete victory for skeptics. This will force us to reevaluate older studies that seem to favor us.

Obviously I would love to get 1, would settle for 2. I suspect Keith wants 4, though deep down I don't think 1 would bother him either.

Well summed up Kris.

There is an excellent resource at Skeptiko.com, hosted by Alex Tsikaris. His latest podcast includes interviews with Dr Penny Sartori, who has done some excellent work in the field of veridical NDE's and Prof John Greenfield, who is an expert on EEG data, and who has stated quite categorically that a flat EEG really does equal an absence of brain activity, as opposed to materialists who claim that activity is still occuring deep down in these flat EEG cases. Have a look!

and even if activity is still happening it is like activity in a battery that is on 99 percent empty. It is hardly enough to do much of anything, much less make someone super conscious.

Thanks Michael I will!

Thanks, Michael Duggan, for pointing out the Skeptiko piece. Very interesting.

Though Prof. Greenfield is clearly not among them, some neurologists do argue that significant deep brain activity can take place even when the EEG is flat. It seems to be an unresolved issue at present.

"Irreducible Mind," by Kelly & Kelly et al., argues this way:

"The issue is not whether there is brain activity of any kind whatsoever, but whether there is brain activity of the specific form regarded by contemporary neuroscience as the necessary condition of conscious experience. Activity of this form is eminently detectable by current EEG technology, and as we have already shown, it is abolished both by adequate general anesthesia and by cardiac arrest. In cardiac arrest, even neuronal action-potentials, the ultimate physical basis for any possible coordination of neural activity between widely separated brain regions, are rapidly abolished (van Lommel, 2006). Moreover, cells in the hippocampus, the region thought to be essential for memory formation ..., are known to be especially vulnerable to the effects of anoxia (Vriens et al., 1996). In short, it is not credible to suppose that NDEs occurring under conditions of adequate general anesthesia, let alone cardiac arrest, can be accounted for in terms of some hypothetical residual capacity of the brain to process and store complex information under those conditions." (p. 419)

Not being a neurologist, I can't evaluate this argument, but there it is.

MP wrote:

"There has been a surprising amount of effort expended over more than a hundred years to scientifically establish the reality of life after death."

Personally I'd say there has been surprisingly little effort.

Also - thought you might like to check this out: "Compatibility of Contemporary Physical Theory With Personality Survival. Work in Progress, Tentative, December 18, 2009: Comments/Criticisms Solicited", by physicist Henry Stapp.

http://www-physics.lbl.gov/~stapp/Compatibility.pdf

“William, if you're going to quote my whole post, please give me credit for it!”

“For the record I am not really interested in semantics or lengthy explanations which tell me nothing.”

Just tying to make a point. As I reread my response to Michael I did not do a good job of making my point. We cannot predict the future and proof of life after death is not subjective just as the universe is not subject.

Unless of course we define all phenomena as subjective then of course all is subjective.

“The brain assists us in defining and recording our experience, but it does not experience our experience.”

Yes this is an excellent point. It gets to that hard problem called consciousness.

“Also, free will is not so much a matter of what we do and what happens to us, but how we are able to experience these events, the context in which we hold our experience.”

This is a very interesting statement could you clarify this in more detail. Thanks.

MP wrote:
"There has been a surprising amount of effort expended over more than a hundred years to scientifically establish the reality of life after death."

“Personally I'd say there has been surprisingly little effort.”

I agree this is one of if not the most important discovery’s that humankind could possible make. I think there is a whole host of mental problems that are associated with the fear of death and fear of nothingness and loss of identity.

There appears to be two sides to this little effort to do research into life after death. The materialists that refuse to do such research and the religious that rely on ancient authority and do not trust any type of science that may make their system of beliefs obsolete.

Religious paradigm: Hear no science, see no science, and speak no science or from the materialist paradigm: hear no spiritual reality, see no spiritual reality, and speak no spiritual reality.

William, Zetetic Chick's (humorous) point about giving her credit is that she is the author of the comment you quoted in full. You seem to be attributing it to Zerdini.

All those Z names can get confusing ...

As far as the "surprising amount" of research is concerned, I phrased it that way because I think most people would be surprised to learn that there has been *any* research in this area.

The afterlife could be a normal part of our every-day lives if technology expands the ability for people to talk to the "dead". Things like EVP will someday be considered an ancestor of the future's modern interdimensional communication technology.

The afterlife cannot be proven just like the existence of the surface of the moon cannot be proven without landing on it. That's just a philosophical conundrum with no solution

William: If you get confused between myself and Zetetic chick why should I take any notice of your posts?

Now can you try and answer my question with a simple and straightforward answer please.

Have you any evidence to support your belief?

If yes please state what it is. If not then say so and that will be the end of the matter.

I can't put it simpler than that.

“Have you any evidence to support your belief?”
“If yes please state what it is. If not then say so and that will be the end of the matter.”
It is not about evidence it is about the impossible dream. We cannot predict the future with any level of confidence. We don’t know what the future holds as far as what is possible and what is not possible concerning proof of life after death. We cannot say that proof of life after death is an impossible dream. Even Michael did not say it was impossible but may be impossible.

Why do you keep asking what evidence I have already stated several times that I made a mistake and confused the two points I was trying to make. It does no good to present evidence one must seek out their own evidence. If the person is not willing to seek with his or her own effort any evidence presented by another will almost always be rejected.

One point was that I believe that proof of life has been shown with physical phenomena and therefore not impossible to prove life after death. That was a belief.

The other point is that we cannot predict the future as to what can be proven and not proven. Proof of life after death is not an impossible dream. We cannot state what is impossible in the future. Technology could be invented 1000 years from now where the physical could communicate with the astral world on a daily basis. One might consider that proof.

Technology could be invented where a person could be transported to the other side for a short stay and that person would have proof. They may bring back videos or text others while there or make a phone call and say hey I am here wish you were here with me see you soon. The list is long of how proof might be attained in the future. If they take holographic equipment with them the whole world could see and experience what they see and experience in real time.

With a PhD in technology my mind wonders here to think beyond what is considered possible. Who know what is possible in the future not I.

Unless of course we consider all phenomena subjective and therefore nothing can be proven.

“I have always maintained that we can never obtain proof of the continuity of life only evidence.”

It is the term “never” in this statement that is incorrect. I maintain that we cannot state that we can never obtain proof of the continuity of life. From an early age we were taught never say never and it appears to be sound teachings. History is full of people with good intentions that have stated this or that will never happen or we can never do this or that. Or this or that will never be invented or heavier than air flight is impossible and will never happen. The list is long of people that have stated never and they were wrong.

In retrospect maybe it would have been best to let the never word slide but so many people read this blog and don’t comment and I just did not want them to think that it will always be impossible to have proof of life after death. I suspect there are very good reasons that the veil is thick between the physical and the astral worlds at this stage of our soul’s evolutionary process.

Whoops sorry Zetetic_chick I was multi tasking and screwed up on that one. Hey I did give a compliment on one of your paragraphs. I am turning all of my audiotapes into CD’s and trying to blog at the same time.

thanks for the dialog. these dialogs are always learning experiences for me.

@William

I think you make an interesting point about what the future may hold and the wisdom (or not) or predicting what may or may not be possible. There have been a number of occasions when what turned out to be perfectly valid discoveries, were initially rejected on the grounds that they were fraudulent. Some were not even examined on the basis that they were clearly impossible.

Given, for example, that there seems to be some evidence to support electronic communication with the deceased (although I have to say from what I have seen, I haven't found it persuasive), who is to say that at some point in the future, it may not prove to be a practical tool?

There is already a great deal of evidence of communication in other forms and at least one regular contributor to this forum claims to have witnessed materialisation of people who were no longer physically alive, and had countless direct conversations with those known to have passed on. I have to say I have no reason to doubt his honesty.

One might argue that we know a lot more about the world now than when telescopes, telephones and the radio were invented, however I do recall reading not that many years ago that the void between stars was completely empty and unless my understanding is incorrect, we seem to be hearing more about dark energy and dark matter and that this void is packed with fields and radiation from every part of the electromagnetic spectrum - it sounds quite a busy place for a void to me, in my ignorance.

On the matter of evidence William, I do think Zerdini's question is reasonable. You tell us your belief but have not clearly explained how you reached it. It is like reading some of the records of seances where the record gives some information then concludes "a great deal of evidence was given but was of such a personal nature as to be inappropriate to report" or some such. It is frustrating and to be honest I cannot see the point in mentioning it if you are not going to give more detail.

"Technology could be invented 1000 years from now where the physical could communicate with the astral world on a daily basis."

I've often thought that life after death wil be widely accepted as a fact (rather than an article of faith) only if some technology is developed that allows regular communication with the departed. There have even been attempts to do this. I believe Thomas Edison worked on such a device, without success. More recently, George Meeks and Bill O'Neil built a device they called the Spiricom, which is said to have worked for a while. John W. Fuller wrote a book about it, "The Ghost of 29 Megacycles," and there is a brief account, along with some audio, here:

http://www.angelsghosts.com/spiricom.html

A simplified diagram of the device, and a transcript of one session, are here:

http://www.worlditc.org/k_06_spiricom.htm

Unfortunately, there are many weaknesses in the Spiricom story. See this page:

http://www.gobeyondnow.com/quiz&ans.htm

Even if we accept the story as basically true, we can't rule out the possibility that O'Neil (who believed he had psychic abilities) was unconsciously producing the communications via some kind of PK.

This points up the problem with saying that technology might offer objective proof. A device like Spiricom, if widely available, would certainly serve as proof of a paranormal phenomenon of some kind, but it might be seen as PK or "super-psi" or access to the Akashic Records, etc. Most people might be personally persuaded to believe in life after death if they could use such a device, but strictly speaking, they still would not have found objective proof.

FYI, here's a Web page that tells you how to build your own Spiricom!

http://www.gobeyondnow.com/makeaspiricom.htm


MP said: "Though Prof. Greenfield is clearly not among them, some neurologists do argue that significant deep brain activity can take place even when the EEG is flat. It seems to be an unresolved issue at present."

I would disagree. Listening to Greenfield's podcast, he refers to extensive imaging studies that reveal hardly any activity with a flat EEG. Game Set and Match in my opinion. The real issue concerns timing, and this is where the "veridical" studies are important: Sartori, Lommel, Parnia, and the current AWARE study.

This one is for Art. I have summarized a story a bit about a woman that had an NDE from the book visits from heaven.

A woman had a horrible car accident and during that accident she left her body and while outside of her body she could hear the thoughts of those that were stuck in the traffic jam due to her accident. At one point she noticed some twinkling lights coming towards her and she felt nourished and loved. She wondered were the lights were coming from and then in an instant she was transferred to the fifth car in the line of traffic and she saw and heard a person in that car praying for the whoever that was in the accident. Before reentering her body she got the license number of the car. After her recovery she managed to track down this person’s address and personally delivered a dozen roses and told the person that she was the person the driver had been praying for.

William-

“Also, free will is not so much a matter of what we do and what happens to us, but how we are able to experience these events, the context in which we hold our experience.”

'This is a very interesting statement could you clarify this in more detail. Thanks.'

It's a big topic. Here are a few examples:

I know people in the Himalayas who have literally nothing but consider themselves to be blessed and experience every moment of their lives as something pervaded with light and wonder. And I know people here in the States who have a surfeit of things but consider themselves cursed and experience every moment of their lives as a dark and repetitive burden.

Do you feel that you are the passive and accidental recipient of an almost infinite chain of chemical and environmental and historical accidents; or do you feel that you chose this life, and you are in the situation you are in because you want to be here in this particular place surrounded by these particular people and in this particular set of relationships?

These are some transformative thoughts that can radically change the way you experience your experience without actually changing the external circumstances of your life. It is true, however, that if you hold your experience in a context so that you experience the circumstances of your life with more joy, more gratitude, more wonder and light, that your circumstances will change as the effortless result of that axis shift in your perception.

With this perspective, you still have no ultimate control over the outcome of any particular event in your life, over any particular failure or success, but SO WHAT? Whether you've failed or succeeded, the light is still shining just as brightly and you still have the ability to be conscious of it and to dwell in it.

I hope that's helpful.

Can't really agree that NDEs during flat EEG is "unsettled"... it goes against everything we know about the brain, and how it's measured by EEG. Unless someone produces some overwhelmingly solid evidence to the contrary we can assume this does not happen.

... kinda brings me back to the question about Michael's post -- where's the proof for non-survival. Historically and across cultures non-survival is the assumed paradigm. How did we get to the point of needed rock solid evidence to contradict what was a shaky assumption from the onset?

Michael Duggan,
Does the timing, ie the 'just after' or 'just before' expanation make any sense either ? It seems so weak to me,desparate even.

William,
If that report is correct, it has similarities to the Von Jankovitch NDE. Fascinating.

“Given, for example, that there seems to be some evidence to support electronic communication with the deceased (although I have to say from what I have seen, I haven't found it persuasive), who is to say that at some point in the future, it may not prove to be a practical tool?”

I could not agree more with this statement. I know someone at Noetic Sciences went to South America to check out someone claiming great things with electronic communication and came back with little or no evidence. I also have heard little that gave me enough evidence that this is a valid phenomenon, but I have heard enough that suggests to me at least that additional research needs to be done.

“You tell us your belief but have not clearly explained how you reached it.”

I attempted to show unsuccessfully that physical evidence such as manifestations and direct voice exists that moves us outside the belief that all paranormal phenomena is subjective in nature and therefore life after death is not impossible to prove. I intended to state that I believe that this kind of evidence is not just subjective but qualitative evidence witnessed and documented by many including scientists.

When I stated, “I believe” that caused people to want me to reveal my evidence for proof of survival. This was not my point and my explanation was poorly stated and therefore misinterpreted by others. These personal paranormal experiences I tend not to share as I have found over the years it does no good to reveal my own personal experiences as evidence except to a very select group of people that know me. Many people will just demean your personal experiences of the paranormal or accuse you of having hallucinations or outright fraud.

As a “guru” stated do not share your pearls with unreceptive minds for they shall demean them but as I stated almost everyone believes that their beliefs or evidence are pearls. All minds are unreceptive to a degree, some more than others, that variation thing again.

It is interesting this is coming up in my life; this week something happened that defies explanation other than a paranormal event. But this is not proof of survival only evidence. But this has nothing to do with my belief that qualitative evidence that has been achieved by direct voice or physical manifestations and would be considered proof in the realm of science. But because most of science has a very rigid materialism paradigm this kind of qualitative evidence is rejected as proof.

Also no one responded but only a knowing beyond knowing coming though a realization will give us our personal proof at this stage of human consciousness. But as you stated so well in the future we may find technology that will give people the ability to “prove” to the masses that these other dimensions. Kind of like after most people hear someone on the radio long enough they have their proof that radio waves exist and it is not magic but waves. They have enough proof of this ability to listen to a radio as they do the sun exists and will shine each day. Was that a good analogy?

“Most people might be personally persuaded to believe in life after death if they could use such a device, but strictly speaking, they still would not have found objective proof.”

Objective proof is in the eyes of the beholder as objective proof for any phenomena here or on the other side is subjective. Even the proof that the sun will shine tomorrow cannot be proved, as it may not shine due to something happening that we did not foresee. It appears that hope and faith and trust rather than just objective evidence are needed to develop the soul to be a greater and greater reflection of that that is.

This is why some state all phenomena are an illusion because phenomena are not objective proof strictly speaking. One must create an operational definition of objective proof to define what is proof and what is not proof.

William,
”If that report is correct, it has similarities to the Von Jankovitch NDE. Fascinating.”

What I have found interesting over the years of my research that people tend not to make these NDE’s up. In fact they tend to keep these experiences to themselves. Just yesterday a woman and I have known her three years revealed to me she had a near death experience when her first child was born. She kept that to herself for 30 years as she at first did not know what it was and second she figured no one would believe her.

I had something paranormal happen to me when I was 18 and I kept this to myself for 27 years and the person I finally felt comfortable to tell but he just stated the mind is powerful and could have done that event. To his credit he apologized for making that remark years later as he had had his own experiences.

"Does the timing, ie the 'just after' or 'just before' expanation make any sense either ? It seems so weak to me,desparate even."

yea, desperate :)

Still fascinated with how otherwise smart neuroscience types can fall into this logic hole... it's as if they go blind whenever the letters NDE are flashed before them.

Alex Tsakiris,
It's this damn lap top I'm using...hammering away at the keys(expanation....oh dear)

'...it's as if they go blind whenever the letters NDE are flashed before them'

It's their training...allegedly ;)

Really enjoy your show. I'd love to hear you interview Van Lommel, by the way.

It seems to me that MP’s main point here is spot-on. As a matter of fact, the position taken by this post is precisely why I haven’t contributed anything to the conversations here in several months – I’m certain that any attempt to demonstrate immortality objectively is entirely impossible. In this matter, I entirely agree with Rabindranath Tagore, who once wrote, “Some seek for the evidence of spiritual truth in the outside world. In this quest one may stumble upon ghosts or some super-sensual phenomenon of nature, but these do not lead us to spiritual truth, as new words in a dictionary do not give us literature.”

While I don’t think any amount of evaluating evidence will ever lead anyone to certainty of immortality, I do think that any given individual can arrive at certainty for themselves. They just can’t get there in the same manner that they can arrive at the certainty that 2+2 = 4.

So here’s a few thoughts, before I head back out to the river.

But what is the individual? Clearly, in this context, we mean the unique consciousness of a particular person -- the "I," or sense of self.

I’d suggest that for most of us, what we describe as the “I” is the sense of self - the aspect of ourselves that is aware, the “I am” - plus the sum total of all of our prior thoughts, feelings and experiences up to the given moment. In other words, what most of us would describe as the unique “self” is differentiated from another unique self simply as a consequence of the countless concepts that each of us has accepted as true over our lifetimes. At the same time, I’d suggest that the “self” that is identified by the characteristic of pure, unadulterated awareness itself is absolutely identical for every single one of us.

That self simply experiences, and it has no obvious attributes besides the capacity to experience - until such time as we chose to investigate exactly what that aspect of ourselves actually is. Those who do so will begin to discover that that “self” has certain, quite startling attributes - especially in the area of powerfully deep, warm feelings.

While I agree wholeheartedly that arriving at objective certainty of immortality will forever remain an impossible dream, I am just as convinced that everyone on earth can arrive at absolute certainty of their own immortality – but I do suspect that such certainty will remain elusive, unless one is willing to find enough humility to consider that perhaps their understanding of their own psychological functioning is incomplete.

To flesh the preceding statement out just a bit, it’s pretty obvious that humanity - at least in the developed world - has mastered the intellectual use of the mind. It has been a slow, cumbersome process, but we exist in an age where our investigation of the external world is nearing an apex – we’ve discovered that matter itself is actually energy, and we’ve learned to manipulate that understanding as well – and that understanding has been used to raise our standard of living, as well as to create the means to destroy humanity entirely. Both are true, but there’s nothing inherently negative about applying the intellect to existence. We wouldn’t be engaging in internet discussions without the intellectual capacity we’ve developed over the centuries.

I want to be as clear as I can that I am not suggesting that mankind should abandon the intellect. It is necessary, and very helpful for life on earth. Yet, there is another use of the mind that is rarely discussed in western society, although it is accessible to anyone, at any time. There have been plenty of discussion on this blog, as well as elsewhere, regarding the “transmission theory”, the idea that our individual minds are not to be likened to a computer, but are perhaps receivers of a larger field of consciousness. What I would suggest is that our minds are both computer and receiver – but the majority of us have learned to respect the use of our minds only in the former context, and don’t consider that we can also learn to use our minds as a receiver – right here and now. On second thought, it’s more like re-learning, since all of us were quite familiar with this use of the mind as small children.

The real issue in trying to express this is that any description of what it’s like to actually begin to use the mind as a receiver will inevitably sound very flighty and drifting to anyone who is attempting to interpret the idea by using their minds as a computer – which is the majority of us, since we have all been raised and educated within a society that is enamored with an Aristotelian approach to knowledge. The only way for anyone to genuinely understand what using the mind as a receiver is actually like it is to actually do it.

Maybe the best way to describe the use of mind as receiver is to contrast it with the use of the mind as a computer. Using the mind as a computer involves filling our minds with data and processing the information. We measure, evaluate, apply logic and arrive at a conclusion. This works great for mathematics and certain science problems, but not so great in other areas – such as human relations. The best way that I’ve found to recognize the computer use of the mind is the characteristic of effort that’s present whenever we slip into that mode. Excessive and inappropriate application of the computer mode will manifest as stress and upset eventually – but it always takes effort to maintain it.

To access the receiver mode, on the other hand, requires that we do the opposite. Instead of filling our mind, we empty it. We simply clear our heads and pay attention. When we notice thoughts coming to mind, we release them, at which point new thoughts will come to mind. In my experience, there’ll be a tendency to grab on to some passing thought and slip into the computer mode – but once we notice that we’re doing that, our minds will clear again, and other thoughts will come to mind. There’s nothing even remotely mystical about this - it’s just an ongoing, moment-to-moment process that feels entirely natural. Those who actually do this will inevitably be surprised by what occurs to them – they will begin to experience certain insights, they will realize ideas that feel very fresh and new, and there will be a sense of warm humility sort of underlying the entire process. In contrast with the computer mode, the best way I know to recognize the receiver mode has to do with the lack of effort that’s involved, as well as the warm, unconditional feelings that accompany it.

As I mentioned earlier, attempting to describe the state tends to mystify it – yet it’s not mystical at all – it’s everywhere. Athletes, musicians and artists regularly access the receiver mode, and young children tend to live there – until we teach them out of it. To use the musician as a means to contrast the two modes, when someone is learning to play an instrument, they learn the instrument in the computer mode, yet it’s impossible to actually perform at a high level outside of the receiver mode – any accomplished musician will agree that virtuoso performance is about allowing things to simply flow. It’s the same with athletes – if someone is trying to hit a baseball they’ll find it impossible to make contact. Another mundane, commonplace example has to do with operating an automobile. When we learn to drive, we do so in computer mode – here’s the accelerator, here’s the brake, here’s the steering and so on, yet once we learn to drive, we eventually do so very naturally – operating the vehicle doesn’t require tremendous effort.

I’ve little doubt that few reading this in computer mode can see any connection at all between how we happen to habitually use our minds and life after death. Still, I’d suggest that those who learn to respect their minds as a receiver as fully as they respect their minds as a computer will be very surprised at the insights they arrive at, and some may very well arrive at insights that address their own mortality - although I do suspect that actively searching for those insights will keep them at bay.

There’s another statement in MP’s main post that I’d like to address, which has also been discussed in several previous threads, which is: “. . . what do we mean by "life after death"? Ordinarily, at least in Western culture, we mean the survival of the individual as an individual. Absorption into some undifferentiated cosmic Oneness might be a kind of life after death, but it's not what we typically are talking about.”

I’d suggest that as we learn to respect our minds as a receiver, our perception of ourselves as an individual will begin to evolve. The insights that come to mind will change our take on who we are. To put that another way, the individual that we are today will expand to encompass more than it currently is. Everyone will eventually realize that they are everything they are today, plus infinitely more. It isn’t about absorption into cosmic Oneness, it’s about expansion into cosmic Oneness. I’d go so far as to suggest that there really isn’t any cosmic Oneness that’s “out there” at all, but rather that it has been “in here” all along.

I think that it’s this expansion of identity that’s everyone’s destiny - but I also think that when that actually occurs is entirely dependent upon how willing we are to explore the use of our own minds as a receiver. I also suspect that those who begin to explore the receiver side of their minds are likely to find physical death an easier process - maybe even entertaining - but that’s only a guess.

So here’s the paradox: if we really want to know - to arrive at certainty - we have to clear our heads, stop looking, forget all about it, and discover a measure of faith that wherever we find ourselves is exactly as it should be. Those who choose to do so may eventually arrive at the realization of what Tagore meant when he wrote what immediately preceded the quote at the beginning of this post:

“Spiritual life is the emancipation of consciousness. Through it we find immediate response of soul everywhere. Before we attain this life, we see men through the medium of self-interest, prejudice or classification, because of the perpetual remoteness around us which we cannot cross over. When the veil is removed, we not only see the fleeting forms of the world, but come close to its eternal being, which is ineffable beauty.”

Happy New Year, all.

William my original question was in response to your post: "I believe that objective proof has been established in several areas such as physical manifestations and different types of trance mediumship such as direct voice."

I asked if you had any evidence to support your belief. If you haven't simply say you haven't and that will be the end of the matter. If you have I would be pleased to read it.
For the record I am not really interested in semantics or lengthy explanations which tell me nothing.
Thanks in anticipation.
Zerdini

William, you replied as follows: “It is not about evidence it is about the impossible dream.” and “In this journey I have found it does no good to present evidence. It will only be discounted or stated as coincidence or whatever.” and “The problem with that statement is every one thinks they have pearls to offer. So I usually don’t share personal phenomena with most but to a few close friends.”

My question wasn’t about the impossible dream it was in response to your statement as outlined above.

What you are saying in effect is that you haven’t any evidence to support your belief in physical manifestations and direct voice.

I have had plenty of experience of direct voice having sat on a regular basis for over ten years with the renowned direct voice medium Leslie Flint and others. I have also experienced full form materialisation which I have mentioned on this blog before. I wasn’t ridiculed so why are you afraid to share your experiences of direct voice and materialisation?

I feel you have skilfully avoided answering my question so I will leave it there. Others can make up their own mind.

Zerdini,
C'mon, Sir, peace and love.

The above comment was posted by me, the 'eh' was my son messing about.

“You may have a belief but have you had any personal experience of direct voice or full form materialisation to back up your belief?”

Then you write:

“What you are saying in effect is that you haven’t any evidence to support your belief in physical manifestations and direct voice.”

Then you write and for me very revealing:

“I have had plenty of experience of direct voice having sat on a regular basis for over ten years with the renowned direct voice medium Leslie Flint and others. I have also experienced full form materialisation which I have mentioned on this blog before. I wasn’t ridiculed so why are you afraid to share your experiences of direct voice and materialisation?”

The statements “I have had plenty” and the “I have also experienced” is suspect from my point of view. Now I see why your insistence on my responding to your questions concerning evidence.

One of the ism’s I left out in my list of ism’s on a recent topic was egotism. I think if we search deep, really deep, we will find egotism running rampant in our discussions. Surely you can see how one could interpret these statements about what you have witnessed as some form of self-important or ego centered behavior. If you cannot see this then you may want to seek deeper. It is clear to me that I have much work to do in my mode of being in the world as it applies to egotism.

This is why being a witness to such phenomena may not reduce this egotism that we all have to a degree. I think one of the most difficult things we have to do in life is look into that mirror and see our own ego for what it is. I.e. very deceptive.

Could it be that such things as faith, hope, and trust work better to reduce this egoism than being a witness to physical manifestations or direct voice. It is not statistically correct to evaluate on one data point but our dialog has given me much to ponder on the importance of some aspects of spiritualism as it applies to spiritually. This is not intended to be a put down of spiritualism. It has much very much to offer. I owe a good deal of my knowledge to the advanced teachings of some spirits that have come through some mediums.

There may be a very spiritual reason that spiritualism other than the common reasons given as to why spiritualism was not that successful as a worldwide religion. Or not. But having stated this about spiritualism any time we can reduce our level of fear whatever that fear may be we can be more loving and this allows us to move in the direction of sympathy to empathy and then in the future or in these other worlds more compassionate.

I believe that being a witness to these physical phenomena does indeed affect and can reduce a level of fear as to life after death. I also believe that being a witness to these physical phenomena can be listed as objective proof of life after death from a scientific view if done using the scientific method with a qualitative design that gives documented qualitative evidence.

This has been so revealing to me this discussion as now I see much clearer why George Wright as a medium was not interested in continuing to do physical manifestations and trance voice like his mother and brother wanted him to continue to do. George sought deeply into advancing his knowledge into the mysteries of life by continuing to bring through an advanced spirit that gave to him profound teachings into the mysteries of life.

For this I thank you for this discussion very much. If the ego comments stung then just chalk it up as the ego doing its thing. It is part of the journey of the soul. My stating such a thing about your ego is my ego doing its thing until it learns as I lose interest in it.

s wood say more with his "C'mon Sir peace and love" then I did with my 675 words.

oh the lessons in life just keep coming. :-)

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