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@ Trev

I read the article (very interesting - thanks)

I find it comforting that the Creator of the Universe doesn't require our souls to inhabit our physical bodies till they start to decompose but instead allows the soul to quickly exit the body - even sometimes if death seems imminent. It would be horrendous to be conscious and trapped in a dead body waiting till it was "really dead." It seems the soul is only very loosely attached to the physical body thus allowing it to exit the body and avoid the actual dying of the cells. I reiterate - it is a great kindness.

"Felipe - you really don't want the Talbot treatment, as brain death is less likely to be temporary!" Posted by: Ben
----------------------------

Michael Talbot was a very interesting writer and his books are very readable. His books were way more interesting than "The Field" by Lynn McTaggart and many other similar books. The Holographic Universe is a fascinating books and many people who have read it enjoyed it very much.

Cardiac arrest equals death. For cardiologists it's one and the same thing.(doesn't sound right to me either but it is so)
So if you have a cardiac arrest you are dead because you have no pulse no circulation no respiratory effort, nor gag reflex etc.

Yet reading up on cardiac arrest I came across this statement:

"So a person without a heartbeat and respiration during a cardiac arrest is not necessarily dead - they are alive because artificial respiration ensures that oxygen enters the lungs, and cardiac massage ensures that oxygen is pumped to the vital organs and tissues of the body."

A good book which discusses when exactly is the moment of death is "The Romeo Error" by Lyall Watson.

The opening chapter tells of a doctor about to perform an autopsy and had just attempted to cut into the chest when the patient suddenly sat up - the doctor dropped dead!

@Art:

I find it comforting that the Creator of the Universe doesn't require our souls to inhabit our physical bodies till they start to decompose ...

I really hope you don't mean that, Art.

@Art:

It seems the soul is only very loosely attached to the physical body thus allowing it to exit the body and avoid the actual dying of the cells.

The soul/spirit body/astral body/etheric body is attached to the physical body sufficiently to allow it to temporarily exit the physical body each night otherwise you would not be able to sleep.

I find that comforting in the sense that it gives you an opportunity to experience the Spirit World so that it is not a great shock when you eventually pass over.

You have a sense of familiarity on arrival - at least that's what the spirit communicators tell us.

Some paranormal group should really create this challenge and see how many "skeptics" sign up to take it.

I'm starting to dislike all these challenges. The Randi followers on Skeptiko keep expressing how great the MDC is. They tell me the rules have been changed to make it fair now, so you can say the test is a sham and not be automatically disqualified as a participant. (Woo Hoo?)

Of course they like to ignore the fact that there really is no winning such a challenge. If someone wins the million, they would be correct in stating (as Ray Hyman already has) that one test proves nothing scientifically. If no one wins it, then they can keep saying that psi doesn't exist because no one can pass this test. Heads I win, tails you lose.

If someone wins the million, they would be correct in stating (as Ray Hyman already has) that one test proves nothing scientifically. If no one wins it, then they can keep saying that psi doesn't exist because no one can pass this test. Heads I win, tails you lose.

....which is why no medium worth their salt has the slightest interest in Randi's challenge.

"I really hope you don't mean that, Art." - Zerdini
---------------------

??? Why wouldn't I mean it? You mean you would prefer that the soul be locked into the body till it completely decomposes? There are many near death experiences where the person said they exited the body even before the crash occured. I find that comforting. It means that when the time comes my soul will quickly leave the body and not be required to stay and suffer the final throes of death. How can that not be comforting?

Well this isn't a psi test I am talking about. My test could easily be done in a safe testable way. ( obviously not using a whiskey bottle to induce consciousness)


??? Why wouldn't I mean it?

Did you read what you wrote? Why would you want to inhabit a body when it's starting to decompose?

Maybe it was badly phrased but I know what you mean.

The reason we inhabit a physical body is so that we can leave it at will if we wish.

Some people prefer to stay very close to their physical body because they believe that one day they will arise from the grave.

That's why they don't want to be cremated even though it's far more practical and hygienic but that's another story.

Zerdini,
ref-defining death
That's interesting but I stand by my previous comment which is correct I believe.

I'm disappearing for a while now(Hooray I hear from every quarter) No more comments in support of NDE's. It really is a pointless exercise. People believe what they want to believe and that's the way it will always be.
Thanks for putting up with me, Michael.
I look forward to Smit's paper in the autumn.

Cheerio Trev.

"I find it comforting that the Creator of the Universe doesn't require our souls to inhabit our physical bodies till they start to decompose."

I know what you mean - although there are some religious traditions that believe the soul clings to the body for several days after death.

Personally, I would be even more comforted if people didn't have to suffer with conditions like ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease), quadriplegia, senile dementia, and scleroderma, to name a few. But that gets us into the "problem of pain" (how a benevolent Creator can allow so much suffering), and Art's answer about "separation" is probably as good as any, and better than most.

Maybe the illusionary nature of our Universe means that after we cross over we will look back on our lives here like they were a "dream in itself?" Meaning that all the suffering and pain that we had to experience was like a dream or maybe like we view a DVD movie? Another words, while we are here we have to think it's all real so that we will feel the appropriate emotions in order to imprint the needed lessons but after we die we will look back and realize that all the horrible stuff that happened wasn't quite real? While we are here we have to believe it's real because otherwise we wouldn't feel the emotion that is needed to holistically imprint the lessons we need to learn?

excerpt from Michelle M's NDE:
"I felt an understanding about life, what it was, is. As if it was a dream in itself. It's so very hard to explain this part. I'll try, but my words limit the fullness of it. I don't have the words here, but I understood that it really didn't matter what happened in the life experience, I knew/understood that it was intense, brief, but when we were in it, it seemed like forever. I understood that whatever happened in life, I was really ok, and so were the others here."
http://www.nderf.org/michelle_m's_nde.htm

Here is what I was talking about. There is a very profound connection between emotion and memory. We have to believe everything that happens to us is "real" because othewise our souls wouldn't learn what they are supposed to learn.

"Emotion can have a powerful impact on memory. Numerous studies have shown that the most vivid autobiographical memories tend to be of emotional events,"
http://www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emotion_and_memory

From Rudolf H. Smit

Greetings to all bloggers in this thread.

Thanks for all the nice (and sometimes not so nice) posts. I have read them all, and in due course I will attempt to compose a response that will address most of them.

And sure, in the Summer Issue of the Journal of Near-Death Studies we (Titus Rivas and I) will respond to an article by Woerlee. But do realize that because of copyright reasons (in connection to the abovementioned article) I cannot go into great detail.

Right now I am busy with other matters so please give me some time. I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Best wishes - Rudolf Smit

For those interested readers, I have listed the facts of the story in the published transcipts of the interviews with TG AT THIS WEBSITE. No interpretation. Just the events / facts / experiences with reference to the page numbers in the published Dutch language transcripts.

G.M.Woerlee wrote:


For those interested readers, I have listed the facts of the story in the published transcipts of the interviews with TG AT THIS WEBSITE. No interpretation. Just the events / facts / experiences with reference to the page numbers in the published Dutch language transcripts.


Thank you for that helpful article.

Is something worrying the good Doctor ? Why the urgency ?

I don't detect any particular urgency Bernie? Could you expand on your comment ?

I must say, Paul, as an aqaintance of someone that posts on here, what an irritating git you are.

I must say, Paul, as an aqaintance of someone that posts on here, what an irritating git you are.

Posted by: bernie | August 13, 2010 at 04:36 AM

How very rude and unnecessary!

I agree with Zerdini that Bernie's comment was rude.

And, like Paul, I failed to detect any urgency in Dr. Woerlee's remark.

I just came across this quote from Thomas Jefferson and was looking for an excuse to use it:

"In truth, politeness is artificial good humor, it covers the natural want of it, and ends by rendering habitual a substitute nearly equivalent to the real virtue."

'How very rude and unnecessary' -Zerdini.

It wasn't very rude, it was ordinarily rude and it was meant to be. And I wasn't addressing you anyway, oh, Great One. Who do you think you are, anyway ?

Gerald Woerlee had already posted once on the subject and that is why in my opinion he made himself look uneasy. Does that make sense to you, oh 'great one(Z) ?'

Paul is irritating, I've come across him on other blogs. Mr 'High-Minded from Cautious Place, truly a man of few...but most precious words'....that is until he gets his nose put out of joint. And then he's gets quite animated... doesn't like it a bit.

LMAO

Bernie - "sarcasm is the lowest form of wit" - read Michael's reply and try and grasp the meaning.

Zerdini(oh great one)

Thanks for the tip.

It reveals exactly how arrogant you are(oh great one)

Pathetic!

Exactly !

Pompous, both of you.

LMAO

From Rudolf H. Smit -- more about the dentures case

A Hello to all bloggers on this site.

As promised I will now have my say on different aspects of the “dentures man” case. But this will only make sense if all participants had read my article in the Journal of Near-Death Studies. Michael Prescott has been so kind to provide a link.

First of all, I wish to thank Michael for properly representing some important details of this article in the introduction of this blog. This makes it easier for me to expand on some matters.

But, secondly, I am quite frank in admitting that I do all this with a high dose of reluctance, simply because I am truly fed up with the way this dentures man case is treated by the skeptics in general, and one skeptic in particular. For me, and all the others who worked with me in unearthing its particulars, this case is closed. All that could be said has been said and we do so in the article that will be printed in the upcoming Summer 2010 issue of the Journal of Near-Death Studies. (When I talk about “we”, I refer to myself, my co-author Titus Rivas M.A. and a few others, such as (male) Registered Cardiological nurse TG, whose role, as you will understand, has been crucial.) Yet, mainly due to the comments on this blog from that one skeptic I feel forced to again address some details of the case. But due to my being busy with other matters I will present my comments in two parts. What follows now is Part 1. Part 2 will follow at a later date.

The Year of the Incident

Okay, let me begin. Michael makes some point of the fact that in my JNDS article I do not mention the year of the incident. In a private mail he asked me about this –- as he appears to think it’s a relevant detail. Why was it left out? Was it simply an oversight?
My answer: no, it was not an oversight, I omitted it deliberately for a reason I will explain a few paragraphs later. But first a brief introduction on the motives behind my decision not to include the year of the incident.

I have been a skeptic all my adult life, but never ever a dogmatic skeptic clinging to one particular paradigm. Because due to my strong conviction that a true scientific approach deals with evidence only and not with ideology, my device has always been: I go where the evidence leads me even if I do not like the outcome. Therefore, I judge cases on their factual merits, and not whether these facts comply with the prevailing materialistic paradigm. If the facts do not comply, then so be it, but next, as true scientists, we should neither ignore the case nor dismiss it as an anomaly and tuck it away in a dark attic hoping that it will be forgotten and preferably burn down with the house.

In my naivity I thought that all skeptics would think and act like this, but I could not have been more wrong. For severaI years I have been in close contact with many skeptics in the Netherlands (I participated in their movement) but in the end I walked out on them, because I could no longer stand their sheer arrogance, their unwillingness to go beyond their safe haven called materialism, their “I am holier than thou” attitude and thus their contempt for everyone not agreeing with them. One of my experiences with them was that they only paid lip service to the idea of “open mindedness”. In reality, their closed mindedness was and is typical for pseudo-skepticism. They won't give an inch, even if the hard evidence is presented to them on a dinner plate. In such cases they tend to dismiss an entire article simply because of small and actually irrelevant details, or worse, “such things cannot be therefore they aren’t...”

So it happened when I tracked down the true facts surrounding the dentures man. In my draft article I had included the year of the incidence, but when I gave it to a critic for comment he dismissed it immediately and refused to read further solely because of the age of the incident: “So long ago? Then it cannot be a reliable account.” Something similar happened with less critical people, although their attitude was a lot milder.

It was because of this that I decided not to include the year of the incidence, thus hoping that also a critical audience would at least be prepared to read on. I assumed that a discussion afterwards would follow and then of course the year the incidence took place, 1979, would be revealed.

A different perspective

But all this ado about the year 1979 amounts to nothing when we look at the case from a different perspective.
Is it really so that memories about an event that took place long ago are by definition unreliable?
I think not since it depends on the events and the impact they have. I can take myself as an example. If someone asks me what I did on January 5, 1950, all I can say is that I must have celebrated my eighth birthday. But I cannot remember what presents I got. All I can remember is that most possibly I did not have many friends around, because already at that young age I hated birthday parties.
However, in May 1945 the Canadian army liberated the western part of the Netherlands from the nazis, and I remember clearly how I, as a toddler of three, was standing beside my mother at the outskirts of the city of Leyden and saw the tanks rolling in. Their size, their speed and tremendous roar scared the wits out of me, and I clung to my mother’s coat crying out loud, and that despite the cheers and happy laughter of the crowd that welcomed the Canadians. I can still see it before me, as if it happened yesterday.
Another example: in the summer of 1946, when I was four, a horse carriage ran over my left knee, and I can remember every detail of this whole terrible event and what followed, plus the fact that my left knee never fully recovered.
Hence, it is above all the impact of the event that counts and the impression it makes. Age is of much less relevance, whatever fuss skeptics make about it. In this regard, it is a fact that after decades NDE’rs can still remember their NDE in detail, even when their overall memory has detoriated.

The reliability of the reports

Now, consider the reports that were written about the case of the dentures man.
One long report in 1994, and the other long one 14 years later in 2008, are both based on in-depth interviews with nurse TG (the second interview being independent of the first one!). Their resemblance is truly striking: they are almost identical as for content, chronology and consistency, and... without any embellishment! ... all of this makes the case reliable. Well, no wonder, given the fact that by TG’s own account, this whole episode with patient B had made a deep and lasting impression on him. As he said: “I remember the whole episode as if it had happened yesterday.” In addition, this particular resuscitation was memorable for him, because it was the very first time that he was the nurse-in-charge. On top of that, the medic who was officially responsible for the whole procedure was a junior doctor, an assistent internist, who did not know well how to handle the procedure and relied heavily on TG's expertise. So TG felt the responsibility for a positive outcome more than ever before.

Now, returning to the two reports, of course there are small discrepancies which, however, are of little or no consequence. This makes all squabbles about the age of the case a futile and irrelevant excercise.
Even my opponent, Woerlee, admits that these interviews are reliable - if they were not, he would not have gone to such lengths to explain the whole case - in truly materialistic terms, that is...

A response to a few commentators

From Roger Knight: Just to play devil's advocate, there is one possible hole in the story. Could a different nurse have informed the patient that his dentures had been removed and also described the appearance of the nurse who removed them? It's not out of the question.
Answer: I have heard that one many times already. But it is very unlikely that something like that would have happened. What we know is that when he was moved to the Intensive Care Unit, the patient was still unconscious and that it required days for him to recover completely. Only after days he may have asked the then serving nursing staff where his dentures were. Apart from being the case that in a hospital there is a coming and going of nurses and other staff (I have experienced this myself) and quite feasibly all the time changing faces due to their various day and night shifts, apparently nobody knew, but more likely would not care simply because there were more important things to do than making lots of fuss about such a trivial thing as dentures. When we asked TG about this he told us that after the whole episode when he stayed home all sorts of thoughts had crossed his mind, but not at all the dentures. Another consideration is that the hospital in question was not a small institute, but a fairly big one giving work to many people – and then it is not uncommon that personnel know each other only superficially and would not at all times be aware who was on duty at a certain time and a certain place.

Paul said: Since this case happened 20 years ago, even if you could find the other nurse, I doubt that much weight could be given to their testimony. Even statements taken a relatively short time after an event is observed are susceptible to errors in recall.
Answer: Seen in the light of what I have explained before, I think this statement by Paul has sufficiently been dealt with.
One additionial note. Of course we have tried to track down the two other (female) nurses and the junior doctor (an assistent internist) who assisted TG. But as is so often the case: names are easier forgotten than events, and besides, due to the strict privacy laws of the Netherlands the hospital was not willing to give us names, even if they were still recorded somewhere.

Paul said: This is perhaps especially so in this case as the event in question may have held no particular significance for the nurse.

Answer: Again, it is clear that Paul’s statement does not hold. This entire event was of paramount significance to nurse TG.

End of part 1. See you later.

Hi Rudolf

Thank you for taking the time to respond so fully. I look forward to Part 2.

For the record, so you understand my personal position: I think there is sufficient evidence in general for a reasonable person to accept that NDEs occur.Not that it matters what I think, but just so you understand where I am coming from on this issue.

I can readily see from your comment that the nurse involved viewed the event as significant, both in terms of the condition of the patient and the subsequent events. That's clear.

I agree that evidence cannot be dismissed purely on the basis of its age. Where evidence is old though, the circumstances around how it was recorded, the individuals giving it and any corroboration become, you might agree, even more important. It seems to me there isn't a great deal of independent corroboration here to support TGs version of events. That does not mean he is not telling the truth or is wrong - it simply makes it more difficult for me (so what?) to accept that report as being 'very evidential' (other than to TG and the patient).

It is true that significant events definitely do leave much more of an impression on our memories than mundane activities. The issue it seems to me here is in the details of what happened. Could it not be that after such a period of time, TG believed he/she remembers the details correctly but that the actual detail is incorrect? The encounter with the patient was some days after the event as I understand it. Was there opportunity for others to mention his teeth, the nurse who resuscitated him, TG's name, when he would be on-duty next etc? It seems to me there could well have been such an opportunity. Did it happen? TG probably does remember how likely or unlikely this is but is it impossible?

I do not say this event did not happen and wasn't a true NDE. My reservations are simply, given the nature of the evidence as presented, about this being a 'very evidential example of an NDE'. I don't see it like that. I do think it is a most interesting experience, I do think it is suggestive of an NDE, particularly the patients general comments about his experience whilst in resus, however these are not reported by the patient, but by a 3rd party - again this doesn't make them wrong but, for some, introduce doubt.

Suggestive of an NDE - yes I think so. Very good evidence - I am not so sure.

Hey Rudolf,

Thanks for your work in getting the truth out.

In my experience with the SINOs (skeptics in name only), you just can't fight bad epistemology.

Theirs is a "divide and conquer" strategy in which each case, strong or weak, is dismissed, and the overall pattern of evidence is hand-waved away.

In the 1970s, my grandmother was revived by EMTs. She later was able to identify correctly EMTs or other people who worked on her. She probably had very little to no knowledge of NDEs at the time. This information comes to me through my aunt second-hand. As evidence, it is far, far, far weaker than the dentures case, but again it fits the overall pattern.

My father also had a powerful NDE or OBE while he was delirious in the hospital.

It's the pattern that counts, and more and more people are seeing it.

Thanks again!

Is it really so that memories about an event that took place long ago are by definition unreliable?

It probably depends what impact it made at the time and what evidence was recorded as it happened.

For example, I can remember exactly what I was doing on the day that 9/11 took place.

I took part in a Direct Voice seance with members of Noah Zerdin's family and two radio producers from the BBC who recorded the proceedings on their own tape recorders.

We only heard the news of 9/11 on the radio as we drove home that evening.

The resultant programme was broadcast on New Years Day, 2002.

All details were recorded on the day it happened.

On the other hand I can remember where I was when the Kennedy assassination took place (22.11.63). I can vividly reall the shock, when I heard the news, but very little else that day.

In one I was directly involved - the other simply an emotional reaction to a news item.

The day after the shooting of Lee Harvey Oswald by Jack Ruby I was present at another seance when the spirit control stated quite firmly: "The man who shot Kennedy is still alive".

I fully expected to read in the papers in the following days the confirmation of that statement but instead as time went on reports of a conspiracy grew and grew.

Post Script : Noah Zerdin was a famous Spiritualist who organised public Direct Voice seances for over 300 people in major halls in London with Direct Voice mediums Mollie Perriman and Leslie Flint.

All proceedings were recorded.

Thanks Mat and Zerdini for your comments! Most interesting!
Also thanks to Paul.
I will prepare part 2 of my contribution in the coming days.

Best wishes - Rudolf

Matt

I think you make a very good point about the pattern being important.

One or two reports of NDEs or reports of evidential sittings with mediums can probably be dismissed out of hand, without appearing completely unreasonable. However the mass of evidence supporting the reality of these phenomena is very significant and varied and to dismiss it all as false, or fraud or illusions doesn't seem reasonable to me.

Although the individual experiences vary in content and quality quite a lot, put them together and a pattern does indeed emerge.



"put them together and a pattern does indeed emerge"

A writer who was very good at putting the pieces together into a pattern was Robert Crookall, a British geologist who retired early to pursue an interest in the afterlife. His books contain numerous accounts drawn from a variety of sources, and he points out clearly (albeit in rather dry prose) where there are remarkable similarities. Though many of his accounts are anecdotal, the overall patterns are compelling. His reports also predate the popularization of NDEs by many years, yet contain many of the same features.

You're right MP,Crookall's book is a dry read but difficult to simply dismiss the amount of evidence as simply fraud, delusion or a combination of the two.

It reminded me in some ways of Wickland's "Thirty Years Among The Dead" - not a title to draw in the crowds admittedly. Similar thing in some ways perhaps - lots of well-documented (in this case) 1st-hand experiences of an extraordinary nature.

From Rudolf H. Smit

Hello dear bloggers – this is my promised second installment regarding the dentures case.

Again, I do this with great reluctance, certainly now, because for the umpteenth time I must deal with anesthesiologist Woerlee’s “explanations” of the case. Between quotes (“explanations”) because they are not explanations but, more aptly, assumptions. Over the years I have had quite some involvement with Woerlee not only on the dentures case, but also on NDE in general (in connection to his book “Mortal Minds”, which admittedly is quite readable, though advocating only materialistic views on the NDE) and on the Pam Reynolds case in particular. Initially, the exchanges with Woerlee were not unpleasant, but in the course of time these exchanges turned somewhat sour. Why? Because of his not acknowledging of, or ignoring of evidence that does not suit his ideas. But I am not going to expand on that, but rather stick to the case at hand.
Now, to get a better understanding of how the controversy between my team of researchers and him came about, first a little bit of history.

Some history

In a way I have to thank Woerlee for bringing up the dentures anecdote in the Journal of Near-Death Studies 22, 235-249, because his account was an incentive for me to delve into the case and track down (male) nurse TG. [By the way: always I mention “male” nurse because every time so often other authors have been making a she of a he. Even in his latest contribution Paul talks about a she/he – goodness Paul, please read a bit more thorough please!] . In those days I also happened to be the Editor of “Terugkeer” (= “Return”, or “Coming Back”) the quarterly journal of Merkawah Foundation which in effect is the autonomous Dutch branch of the International Association of Near-Death Studies. After we, i.e. myself and Titus Rivas, had done and published our in-depth interviews with nurse TG, I decided to ask Woerlee to prepare a lengthy comment to be published in Terugkeer. Because, although Merkawah may be a society for NDE’rs and people interested in the NDE, our Foundation does not constitute some kind of cult, as quite a number of so-called skeptics have accused us of. We are prepared to seriously consider all ideas about the NDE, whether these are materialistic or not. (Although, I have to say that for many of our NDE’rs such materialistic approaches quite often give them much emotional distress, because of the at times very disrespectful and paternalistic ways those materialistic views are expressed.)

Anyway, Woerlee was all too happy to accept my inventation and he duly delivered a long and detailed article, which was published in the Winter issue 2008 of Terugkeer. However, as is usual in a scientific debate I published in the same issue a few rejoinders, i.e. one by Titus Rivas, one by nurse TG, one by cardiologist Pim van Lommel, and a fourth one which in this matter is of less relevance because it did not focus on the medical aspects.

Well, what we were happy about is that Woerlee did not dismiss the case out of hand, something that other skeptics had been most eager to do. On the contrary, he stated that not only the account of nurse TG was reliable but also, to some astonishment of us, that it perfectly well confirmed his ideas on how the entire case had come about.

Two different versions?

But Rivas, TG , Van Lommel, and I could not agree. Because close scrutiny had revealed that Woerlee had either overlooked some important details, or had given them his own twist. In this regard, see what Woerlee wrote on his website :
“Unfortunately, TG gives two stories regarding the timing of removal of this man's dentures. In the first report, TG states that the dentures were removed after starting the Thumper (p14-15 in Autumn "Terugkeer" 2008). This is a logical time, as the Thumper would be started as soon as possible. However, in a second statement TG states that the dentures were removed after positioning the man under the Thumper, and only after the mask for artificial respiration was positioned on the man's face was the Thumper started (p8 in Winter "Terugkeer" 2008). NOTE. This later explanation makes little medical sense, as it means the patient would receive no heart massage for a while. So there is some uncertainty as to the exact time of removal of the dentures. However, I will assume the medically more logical action, that the Thumper was turned on as fast as possible, after which the man's dentures were removed.”

In all frankness, the above passages annoy me greatly! What he is saying here is that there are two versions of the same event that are contradicting each other. This is not so, far from it! Alright, in the first statement there is indeed some ambiguity, because it seems as if TG had first switched on the Thumper (i.e. the heart massage machine) and after that had removed the dentures from the patient’s mouth etc. But the second version does not at all constitute a different procedure, but a clarification and correction of the first one. Because that is what TG told the reader, hence also Woerlee, in his rejoinder. What he says here is this (first in Dutch, and next I will provide the translation):

Dutch: De heer B. werd bij binnenkomst in het ziekenhuis door ons overgenomen van het ambulancepersoneel, in bed gelegd, op z’n zij gedraaid om de hartmassagepomp in positie te brengen, weer terug op de rug. Daarna werden door mijzelf, aan het hoofdeinde van het bed staande, de voorbereidingen getroffen om het beademingsmasker te installeren waarbij dus het desbetreffende kunstgebit in de mond werd aangetroffen en meteen verwijderd. Pas toen het masker op zijn plaats was aangebracht was, pas toen dus werd de hartmassagepomp aangezet en de reanimatie dus feitelijk gecontinueerd.

Translation: At his arrival at the hospital Mr B was transferred to us by the ambulance personnel, then placed onto the bed [in the resuscitation room], turned on his side so as to bring the heart massage machine into position, and then turned on his back again. After that, while standing at the head of the bed, I made the preparations for installing the ventilation mask; that is when I found the dentures which I removed immediately. Only after the ventilation mask was on its place, thus only then the heart massage pump was switched on and hence the factual resuscitation continued.
[I have to add that before placing the ventilation mask TG also inserted a Mayo tube into the patient’s windpipe – R]

Clarifying correction

Besides coming across as a perfectly plausible procedure, this statement was a clarification and correction of the first one. But instead of accepting this statement as a clarifying correction, as he should have done, Woerlee appears to dismiss it in his later writings (on his website and elsewhere). But instead he says that it is medically more logical to accept the first of TG’s statement. That may seem more logical to him, but it did not happen, period. In an email to him, dated 1-1-2009, I made it clear to him that he was thus misrepresenting the facts. (If any of you so wish I will provide this email, together with translations from the Dutch into English).
Also, I have to point out that in the 1994 interview TG had stated that he had removed the dentures immediately after the patient had been brought in. No mentioning of first starting the heart massage machine.

But besides, if it were the first version – first switching on the machine, and after that removal of the dentures etc... or the other way around – it would not have made that much difference. Because it was more a matter of seconds than of minutes.

But Woerlee prefers to use the first version because it suits him better. He has to, because from the very beginning his purpose has been to “prove” his purely materialistic explanation that patient was B was fully conscious from the very moment the heart massage machine was switched on. Hence, according to him the patient could hear, see, feel and all that. No matter that the patient was cold as ice, had no heartbeat, did not breath, had lividity marks on his body, and.... had no pupilary reactions to bright light shone in his eyes, and so on and so forth. Woerlee appears to insist that immediately after the heart massage machine was switched on, blood circulation was immediately restored to such capacity that also physical consciousness had returned. Because as he points out: patient felt the dentures beng removed from his mouth, heard them being laid on a pulled out shelf of the crash cart, had a good view of the resusication in the very brief moments when his eye lids were opened... Will anyone blame me that I cannot buy that?

Not making sense

Quite simpy, this does not make sense. A careful reading of TG’s clarifying testimony reveals that there was absolutely no sufficient blood circulation, but only until long after the whole procedure had started. Hence there was no physical consciousness, period.

Mind you – Woerlee was not there, he did not participate in the procedure – on the contrary, at the time he lived and worked in the UK. Yet, he shoves his version of the case down our throats as medical gospel. The experience of the man who did the actual work he simply dismisses.

Quite recently we consulted TG on this, and it is no wonder that he experiences Woerlee’s behavior in this matter as intolerable and insulting. He now regrets that he ever dared to bring the case into the open. I can hardly blame him.

Second opinion

Last year I asked for a second opinion from another anesthesiologist, a man with a similar track record as Woerlee, and who also professes to be an staunch atheist, just like Woerlee. He studied all the articles on this case, and after quite some time I received his comment, the concluding sentence being (in translation): “After having listed all the points, I do not arrive at a conclusion.” In other words, he is not sure. It would have honored Woerlee if he had adopted a similar stance.

This is all I have to say as regards the views of Woerlee. You will read more in the forthcoming Journal of Near-Death Studies. But, besides, I feel no intention to go into further debate with Woerlee who recently managed to say in a forum on Skeptico.com this disdainful remark: “This book [Jeffrey Long and Paul Perry’s (2010) latest book Evidence of the Afterlife] is not science. It is simply fodder for the uncritical followers of the NDE sect” (bracketed material and italics added).

This is the end of installment 2.
There may a brief clarifying third installment be coming, as I had to prepare this one in somewhat of a hurry. My wife and I will be off for a few days, that’s why.

Rudolf, Thanks very much for taking the time to clarify things here. As an NDEr, I'm interested in how the medical community views NDEs, although truthfully nothing can take away from me what I've experienced. Sometimes I feel badly for skeptics because they say what they do out of ignorance. I wish I could pass my experience around so that others would just "know". If that were an option, I wonder if the skeptics would take me up on the offer or turn it down? I kind of think they would turn it down.

Thanks Rudolf. I realised TG was a male nurse but had already posted the last comment and it can't be edited once submitted.

Thank you, Rudolf, for that detailed report which is most helpful.

'Audi Alteram Partem' - hear both sides - should always be invoked when considering cases like this.

Rudolf,

Thanks for the great additions!

I can feel your frustration. I have argued with skeptics many a time, and it is maddening. It makes one fear for the epistemological soundness of the entire human race when such people, who brand themselves as paragons of objectivity and reason, use any low trick in the book to see things according to their worldview--no matter how strong the evidence to the contrary.

Yet, the truth will out. In my view, the afterlife is a *proven* though disputed thing, and the skeptics will soon join history's merry troupe of fools.

Cheers,

Matt

@ Matt Rouge:
"such people, who brand themselves as paragons of objectivity and reason, use any low trick in the book to see things according to their worldview ...."

My term for such low tricks is "slimy scoftic subterfuge."

Firstly, I had previously stated that I wouldn't be commenting on NDE's for quite a while, but because of the exceptional posts from R. Smit, I feel bound to make a brief return.

Rudolf,

That was a truly excellent twin post; thankyou for taking what must have been some considerable time and effort to compose it.

It now should be clear to all fair minded readers that Woerlee's purpose is not to deal honestly with the facts but rather to creatively distort them (as I have previously stated) simply in order to stamp out any threats to his precious materialist dogma.

He has done this before with his absurd attempted debunking of the Pam Reynold's case and he will attempt to do it again(for sure) when the preliminary results of the Aware study are released.

Woerlee is charming and clever and obviously a very good anaesthetist, but....is he a truly fair minded scientist, who bases his position on the facts.
No.

Thanks again, Rudolf. That was worth coming back on for.

Great posts from Matt Rouge, Sandy and Roger.

..Sandy said: "I wish I could pass my experience around so that others would just "know". If that were an option, I wonder if the skeptics would take me up on the offer or turn it down? I kind of think they would turn it down."

Hey Sandy, whether you've noticed it or not, they're probably steering clear of you already... 'fraid it might be contagious ;-)

There was a young person named Trevor,
Who said: I'd quite like to be clever,
I'd be less denser,
If I could join Mensa,
I would, if they'd ask. But they never!

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