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Riptide is a real page-turner Michael, and with authentic detail. I don't know how you find time to do all the research, read so many books and run a blog too (not to mention your financial dealings!)

Thanks, Ben!

This has nothing to do with the current post, but this case is so weird that I feel I must share it with people who are interested in strange stuff. I saw a BBC documentary called "Madness in the fast lane" the other night on Swedish TV4 when I couldn't sleep. It's about two Swedish twin sisters who for no apparent reason tried to kill themselves by running out into the heavily trafficked motorway to London two years ago. But of them survived, despite being run over, one of them more than once, but it didn't end there. There is nothing paranormal about it, but it really starts you thinking. Here is a link where the case is summarized:

http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=188280&st=0&p=3537653&hl=sabina%20and%20ursula%20eriksson&fromsearch=1&#entry3537653

At the site is also a link to the BBC documentary at youtube. Viewer discretion is advised. It has real footage from the traffic surveillance cameras of the traffic accidents and it may be very distressing.

I saw that programme, Tom, and as you rightly point out it is very distressing.

"There is nothing paranormal about it"

It is distressing, but it's not paranormal. So why on earth should we watch it?

Yes, indeed. I can't get the twin sisters out of my mind. Something very eery about them. Just consider the fact that one of the sisters was run over twice - or was it three times? - on the motorway, and despite this she had to be held down by six people to get first aid. Not to speak of her careless attitude the next day at the hospital.

Here is another link to a somewhat critical review of the documentary:

http://www.theartsdesk.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=1988:madness-in-the-fast-lane-bbc1&Itemid=27

Yes, the documentary may be justly criticized for being rather tacky and sensationalist, but the facts are what they are, and the most bizarre part was the sisters themselves and their actions.

some people are suggesting a paranormal explanation to the events surrounding the twins; demon possession.

"It is distressing, but it's not paranormal. So why on earth should we watch it?"

I already gave an answer to that: "strange stuff", and this blog is about "matters of life and death". Further, when I wrote that there is nothing paranormal about it, I was on the point of adding: "or so it seems", and between the lines I implied that there might be something paranormal about it after all.

Yes, Erich, one's thoughts can't be stopped from wandering in that direction.

"and between the lines I implied that there might be something paranormal about it after all." - Tom
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As far as I'm concerned everything is "paranormal" - meaning we can't really explain it. I think everything happens for a reason, even the bad stuff and for everything that happens there is the superficial obvious reason - and then a deeper underlying spiritual reason why it happened.

Our whole universe is Maya, an illusion, and what we see as being solid matter are the electro-magnetic bonds between the atoms and not the atoms themselves. The only reason my hand doesn't float right down through the table they are resting on is because the negative charges of the electrons in my hand are repelling the negative charges of the electrons in the table.

All physics is quantum physics and all chemistry is quantum chemistry. We don't see it but there is a deeper underlying reality we aren't privvy to because our senses aren't designed to see it.

That is the Law Of Correspondece, Art.

"As Above, so Below"

"As Within, so Without"

Michael,

I've been reading some of your essays on your website, and I just wanted to say that it's really great stuff.

It would be cool to have a post from you about your take on the current state of the publishing industry. I'm trying to get a non-fiction book published (really just starting the process), and your perspective would be valuable.

Cheers,

Matt

Thanks, Matt. Unfortunately my perspective on the current state of the publishing industry is pretty negative. This is partly because I can't get published anymore ... but I've also seen a lot of other writers with established careers suddenly become unemployed.

The situation is at its worst in fiction. Nonfiction probably offers more opportunities. But the combination of the recession, the ongoing transition to ebooks, the ineptitude of the publishing industry, and competition from many other sources of entertainment and information has led to a severe decline in book sales.

Joe Konrath's blog covers the waterfront quite well:

http://jakonrath.blogspot.com/

On the plus side, it's never been easier or cheaper to publish your own book. On the minus side, it's incredibly hard to make your book stand out from the crowd and get noticed.

A new writer with no track record probably has a better shot at getting a publishing deal than a multiply-published writer with a mixed track record. In that sense, if you haven't been published before, you may have an edge.

The main thing publishers are looking for is a way to generate buzz about the book. Someone who is good at promotion and has venues available to sell himself will have a big advantage. To take an extreme example, anyone who has his own TV show can get a book deal easily. Of course, few of us have our own shows, but even people who speak regularly at conferences or have done radio interviews, etc., have an edge over those who aren't PR-savvy. So if you can convince a publisher that you can find creative and effective ways to spread the word about your book to a large audience, it is far more likely you'll pique their interest.

Credentials help too. A self-help book has a much greater chance of being published if it's written by a licensed psychologist. Even in fiction, someone who is an actual police detective or CSI technician will be more likely to sell a police-procedural novel than someone who isn't. Readers like to think they're getting the inside story.

(They're often fooled. Readers bought Margaret Truman's crime novels because they thought they were getting an insider's perspective on life in Washington. But Ms. Truman - Harry Truman's daughter - didn't write those books. The ghostwriter was a guy who had never set foot in the White House! The same is true, even more obviously, for crime novels with a tennis theme "written" by Martina Navratilova, sci-fi novels "written" by William Shatner, etc.)

Basically, the book business is all about the sizzle, not the steak. The quality of what you've written matters to some extent, but your perceived ability to "build a brand" matters much more.

Sorry to be kind of a downer ... but hey, you asked! And sheer persistence can get you past a lot of these hurdles. After all, as long as the publishers are still in business, they have to buy something.

I agree, how do you find the time to do all those things mentioned in your last comment !

Hope I can read Riptide in due course as your early novel Manstopper !

Just wanted to add, it is a shame what is going on in the publishing industry, especially in the United States. It seems the industry just wants to hand out 7-figure advances to anyone considered a "celebrity." Meanwhile, really talented writers get ignored.

I just came across this article titled that's not an afterlife- that's a brainstorm!. Apparently a study that proves that nde's that caused by a surge of electrical brain activity when the brain runs out of oxygen. What does everyone think?

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/science/medicine/article7140165.ece

"Apparently a study that proves that nde's that caused by a surge of electrical brain activity when the brain runs out of oxygen. What does everyone think?" - Leo MacDonald
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I'm very sorry but I think you are a troll that won't answer my question. Why do people who have near death experiences routinely describe them in terms that seem to parallel, corroborate, and congruent with the holographic universe theory and quantum physics? How is that people who have never heard or read anything about the holographic universe theory oftentimes come back and describe their experience in terms that can only be called "holographic?"

Michael,

Very helpful! I RSSed Joe's blog (of course, I RSS yours too!).

I am reading a book on writing book proposals. Well written book, but it can's sugar-coat the fact that the whole process is pretty darn odious.

I really don't like ceding control to others, and I hate the whole "gatekeeper" thing, so I think I'm likely to go the self-pubbing route.

Thanks again!

Matt

"Apparently a study that proves that nde's are caused by a surge of electrical brain activity when the brain runs out of oxygen."

I don't think "proves" is the right word. "Suggests" might be more like it.

Of course even if a surge of electrical activity is correlated with an NDE, we're still left to deal with the content of the NDE. This is not just the "holographic" content, though this is apparent especially in the life review, but also content like this:

Pretty consistent reports of traveling through a tunnel or a void toward a welcoming light.

Encounters with deceased loved ones.

Paradise environments.

Buildings made of crystalline materials and described as being constructed of "pure thought."

Telepathic communication with others in the afterlife.

A Being of Light who guides the NDEr in self-judgement.

A decision to return in order to complete unfinished business on Earth.

And of course the veridical reports of activities in the ER or OR, and even of things taking place far away from the patient's location.

If the NDE is simply a hallucination, I find it odd that the hallucinations are fairly consistent, even when experienced by people with no religious beliefs and no knowledge of NDEs or spiritualism.

If the brain is a kind of filter that normally keeps us from being overwhelmed by information about the spirit world, maybe the surge of energy in the dying brain widens the filter and allows us to see further than we usually do.

Or maybe not. More study is needed. Nothing is "proved."

I'm very sorry but I think you are a troll that won't answer my question. Why do people who have near death experiences routinely describe them in terms that seem to parallel, corroborate, and congruent with the holographic universe theory and quantum physics

Simple answer - they don't. Please check http://www.iands.org/nde_index/ndes/key_facts_about_near-death_experiences.html for "verified" facts about near death experiences.

I also suspect there may be a correlation between brain surges and NDEs, however, I have to wonder, does this only occur when death is inevitable, or can it also occur when it's reversible? We can't really know for sure what's happening at that moment if it's only happening when the death process is impossible to reverse at that point, and if it also does happen to those who are literally near-death, one has to wonder why they don't always have an NDE when a surge occurs.

"Why do people who have near death experiences routinely describe them in terms that seem to parallel, corroborate, and congruent with the holographic universe theory and quantum physics." - art
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Simple answer - they don't. Please check http://www.iands.org/nde_index/ndes/key_facts_about_near-death_experiences.html for "verified" facts about near death experiences." - sbu

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??? Huh? It had nothing to do with my question. I went and read the whole article that you posted. It didn't even mention the connection between NDE's and the holographic universe theory.

There is a chapter in Dr. Ken Ring's book "Life At Death" that is all about the connection between NDEs and the holographic Universe. Dr. Melvin Morse in his book Where God Lives devotes several pages to the connection between NDEs and the holographic Universe. Dr. Oswald Harding wrote a whole book about the connection between NDEs and the holographic Universe called Near Death Experiences: A Holographic Explanation.

People who have NDE's routinely talk about overwhelming feelings of oneness and connectedness, feeling like they are everywhere in the universe at once, time and space not existing, buildings that are "made out of knowledge", 360 degree vision, seeing colors they've never seen before, hearing sounds that they haven't heard in this physical universe, and during the life review seeing their whole lives flash by in an instant (bolus of information)and feeling the emotions and feelings of the people they interacted with (the life review is a holographic experience par excellence), and how the other side will feel even more real to us than this side does, and feeling the feelings and hearing the thoughts of the people they interacted with. I find these things to be very evidential because it parallels things I've read about in popular physics books.

for example - excerpt from Mark Horton's NDE:

"I literally had the feeling that I was everywhere in the universe simultaneously." http://www.mindspring.com/~scottr/nde/markh.html

The answer is obvious. We are presently living in a holographic projection and after the body dies the soul merges back into the original holographic film from which this "physical" universe is projected from - which means that everything that is here will exist there - only the physics of that dimension will be very different than this dimension. And because a holographic projection is blurry the other side (heaven) will seem even more real to us -"realer than real" as some near death experiencers describe it - than this side does.

excerpt from: The holographic universe: When it pays to be first

"Since the volume of the spherical universe is much bigger than its outer surface, how could this be true? Hogan realized that in order to have the same number of bits inside the universe as on the boundary, the world inside must be made up of grains bigger than the Planck length. ‘Or, to put it another way, a holographic universe is blurry,’ says Hogan.

This is good news for anyone trying to probe the smallest unit of space-time. ‘Contrary to all expectations, it brings its microscopic quantum structure within reach of current experiments,’ says Hogan. So while the Planck length is too small for experiments to detect, the holographic ‘projection’ of that graininess could be much, much larger, at around 10-16 meters. ‘If you lived inside a hologram, you could tell by measuring the blurring,’ he says."

http://blogs.monografias.com/sistema-limbico-neurociencias/2010/02/19/the-holographic-universe-when-it-pays-to-be-first/

The answer is simple. The place that near death experiencers describe they went to after they died has all the attributes one might expect in the original holographic film from which our present "physical" universe derives from. After our body dies our soul merges back into the original holographic film, a place where everything, past, present, and future exists, where thoughts are things or whatever you focus your attention on you experience, where time and space don't seem to exist, and where the feelings of oneness, connectedness, and "love" seem to be overwhelming and infinite.


I am sorry to everyone here, sometimes i think that death maybe the end or that life after death is real i seem to go back and forth quite a bit lately. But now that this is a new day i argee it wouldn't explain the verdical accounts of ndes, nor blind people who see during ndes, also honestly after looking at the article more.

It looks like it doesn't explain anything at all and certainly provides no evidence that ndes are a hallucination. Because the patients didn't report any nde or obe so there was no correlation done whatsoever with that surge of brain activity that lasts about three minutes when the brain lacks oxygen. Also there are many cases where obe happen for a lot longer than 3 minutes, also the cortex of the brain needs to be working too to have complex mental functioning like what is seen in ndes.

Hi Art,

I don't see the strong connection between the holographic theory and nde's. Perhaps
nder's are getting glimpse of another parellel universe one of an infinite number of them.

I have read literally thousands of NDEs in books, on websites, etc. About 1/3 of them say things that have a very "holographic" flavor to them - referring to the connectedness and oneness they felt, etc. If you disagree with me about the connection between NDEs and the holographic universe theory then you also disagree with Dr. Ken Ring, Dr. Melvin Morse, Dr. Oswald Harding, and Dr. Edgar Mitchell.

But if you don't really understand or haven't read and studied what the implications of living in a holographic universe are then I can understand how one might not be able to see the connection between NDEs and the holographic universe theory. It's plain and obvious to me.

The problem i have with the holographic theory is it doesn't seem to make any testable predictions, also how could a person prove that were living in a holographic universe?

There are a plethora of articles on the internet, in reputable scientific journals, about the holographic nature of our universe. Everything is pointing in that direction. There is no way on this blog I can direct you to all of them. It is the sum total of the evidence, from many different directions, which gives me a high degree of confidence, that we live in some kind of strange holographic projection.

excerpt from article I posted a link to earlier:

"For many months, the GEO600 team-members had been scratching their heads over inexplicable noise that is plaguing their giant detector. Then, out of the blue, a researcher approached them with an explanation. In fact, he had even predicted the noise before he knew they were detecting it. According to Craig Hogan, a physicist at the Fermilab particle physics lab in Batavia, Illinois, GEO600 has stumbled upon the fundamental limit of space-time - the point where space-time stops behaving like the smooth continuum Einstein described and instead dissolves into ‘grains’, just as a newspaper photograph dissolves into dots as you zoom in. ‘It looks like GEO600 is being buffeted by the microscopic quantum convulsions of space-time,’ says Hogan.

If this doesn’t blow your socks off, then Hogan, who has just been appointed director of Fermilab’s Center for Particle Astrophysics, has an even bigger shock in store: ‘If the GEO600 result is what I suspect it is, then we are all living in a giant cosmic hologram.’"
http://blogs.monografias.com/sistema-limbico-neurociencias/2010/02/19/the-holographic-universe-when-it-pays-to-be-first/

excerpt from an online article in National Geographic about an interview with Dr. Brian Greene, PhD Physicist from Columbia University:

"In the final chapter of your book, you suggest that the world may be a hologram. That sounds very Matrix-like."

"It's a very speculative idea that seems to, strangely enough, naturally emerge from string theory. Basically, the fundamental laws of the universe don't really operate in the environment around us. They may operate on sort of a distant bounding surface and give rise to the familiar world that we experience in much the same way that a thin piece of plastic, when illuminated correctly—if it's a hologram—can yield a three-dimensional image.

It might be that the deep laws are more like the thin piece of plastic existing on a thin bounding surface. Everything we know might be akin to a holographic projection of those distant laws."
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/03/0326_040326_briangreene_2.html

"Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real." - Niels Bohr

Most materialist are stuck in Newtonian thinking, not realizing that quantum physics has changed everything about just how "real" our universe is. Atoms are mostly ghostly empty space, 99.9999999% empty space to be exact - and if an atom were blown up to the size of a football stadium the nucleus would be the size of a grain of rice in the middle and electrons would be little more than wispy clouds floating around the outside.

And the sub-atomic particles themselves are hardly like anything we've come to know as matter being more like eddies in a stream or river than a rock or a BB. Sub atomic particles can appear and disappear, make quantum jumps, sometimes appearing as waves and sometimes as particles, able to instantaneously with each other over vast distances, and sometimes even seeming to communicate with the people who investigate them.

The only reason my hands don't float right down through the table they are resting on is because of the negative charges of the electrons in my hand repelling the negative charges of the electrons in the table. There is very little about "matter" that is real.

quote about Dr. Ken Ring:

"In 1980 University of Connecticut psychologist Dr. Kenneth Ring proposed that near-death experiences could be explained by the holographic model. Ring, who is president of the International Association for Near-Death Studies, believes such experiences, as well as death itself, are really nothing more than the shifting of a person's consciousness from one level of the hologram of reality to another."
http://quanta-gaia.org/reviews/books/holoUniverse.html

Which is exactly what I believe.

"Apparently a study that proves that nde's are caused by a surge of electrical brain activity when the brain runs out of oxygen."

This has been over-hyped by the skeptics. Electrical surges can't explain the Gamma synchrony (a signature of well organised conscious activity), yet this is observed in these patients.

see here for a balanced overview of these findings;

http://www.quantumconsciousness.org/

Hmm, I honestly don't like using Michael's blog as a message board of sorts, but I decided to find the most relevant topic.

Someone had the balls, err, courage to post on PZ Myer's blog about evidence of survival of consciousness after death. Of course, seeing the types of people who post there, you can obviously expect that there was disagreement and immaturity. While I don't have a probably with the former, it's the latter that bothers me. I honestly want to pretend that these guys are angry teenagers, but I just face palm when I realize some of the responses are coming from adults that are in the 40 of 50-year-old range.

One of the guys called the R-101 case "opportunistic ghoulism", whatever that is supposed to mean and references cases where blinde NDE'ers have seen things as "Masturbating Without Genitalia"

The one that pretty much almost made me lose faith in humanity was when the poster pointed out all the evidence out there and someone responded

"Of course. There isn't any.

There also aren't any volumes of scientific research on invisible pink unicorns."

Hey Aftr

I finally came to realize that one should just ignore the skeptics. They might be right every now and then, the same way a broken watch is right twice a day but even if they are correct on occasion it is not through reason so much as dumb luck.

Paranormalist have better reasoning skills. There I said it. Evaluating evidence for survival is better done in house, you are much more likely to get a balanced, well thought out view that way.

I read the article about brain surges.

I think it's both sad and hilarious that the researchers think that they've finally "got it" with this discovery. It shows such a lack of understanding, if not a profound disregard, for the "facts on the ground" of NDEs.

As has been pointed out above, the brain surge can hardly explain why people have the same kinds of experiences during their NDE. If a skeptic knew *nothing* about NDEs and had to predict what kind of experiences the process of the brain dying and then being revived would create, what would they guess? Of course, they would guess what matches their worldview and, in this case, what would also match common sense. To wit, in order of likelihood:

1. Nothing. The person is unconscious and in a terrible state, so he or she would remember nothing.

2. Totally random stuff--not a coherent dream. Isn't this the best we could expect of a brain undergoing severe trauma?

3. Random nightmares, since the brain is under trauma.

4. Random pleasant dreams, since the brain is trying to comfort itself during the dying process (or the chemistry of the moment would cause this).

Not a skeptic in the world would have guessed what ended up happening, which is a *very* consistent set of experience. Even without veridical NDEs, even without the strange fact that NDErs *swear* that their experiences were real (including hard-core atheists!), even without the fact that many NDEs take place when the patient has zero brainwave--even without all these things, the researchers and skeptics in general have a lot of explaining to do.

But of course they don't bother. Once they find their "cause," they're done. Their worldview is preserved, and the issue that remains can be hand-waved away.

It is to laugh.

Thanks,

Matt

Aftr

Your dead right (sorry for the pun) about the level of debate and awareness of the evidence (or lack) on such forums. It is possible to waste a great deal of energy on them reasoning with folks who won't even discuss the facts. Sooner or later it is probably best to leave them to it. I don't really understand why it has to get so adversarial and insulting. I guess anyone is capable of being provoked, the problem with such an important topic is that the debate sometimes becomes about being the 'winner' and not uncovering the truth.

Just a couple of observations. Some of the people supporting 'paranormal' phenomena seem just as childish as some of the sceptics and equally unwilling to consider objections rationally, which is a shame.

Secondly, although it may appear that the message regarding evidence isn't being heard by,a sometimes vocal, minority of often uninformed posters - there may be a significant number of folks reading such forums with a truly open mind. Their voice is probably seldom heard on such but they are there nonetheless. I think the term is lurkers :) - they may well follow-up the evidence and reach their own conclusions.

Aftr, I agree with everyone's advice on avoiding skeptics who behave so obnoxiously. I did not believe that NDEs meant anything myself and was highly skeptical. After reading Moody's books and other material, I am now convinced there is something going on. I recently had a discussion with someone who insisted that NDEs are "only hallucinations." I explained that it's highly improbable that thousands of people all over the world from different cultures would have such a similar hallucination, but to no avail. Another interesting argument is a kind of Darwinist theory that NDEs are just "nature's way" to make death easier on us, that it's sort of an evolutionary thing to ease our passing. But what purpose would it serve in actually helping our species--if we're dying, we can't procreate anymore, so how would feeling better about dying help the species? And if it was some fantasy wish fulfillment, how many people would wish to experience a life review? They'd probably want to be golfing, or driving a Ferrari, or enjoying a gourmet dinner--not reviewing their life. I keep looking for valid arguments that show NDEs aren't "real," but so far haven't found any. Maybe I don't want to see it, but so far, it's going to take a little more to make me believe that there's nothing to NDEs.

"And if it was some fantasy wish fulfillment, how many people would wish to experience a life review?"

Especially when you consider that NDE'rs often say that their life review is, to some extent, painful. They speak of feeling the pain of people they've hurt as if it were their own. (Think of Dannion Brinkley's classic account, for example.)

Not easy to explain as wish fulfillment!

How about this evolutionary argument?

Life on earth evolved such that people and animals have spirits that live on after their bodies are did, since having an immortal spirit makes an animal happier, less fearful, and more likely to pass its DNA on to the next generation.

;)

Ad hoc arguments like that can work both ways.

Cheers,

Matt

Nice Matt. But some animals are really, really, gross- let me just say disgusting, really. C'mon dragonfly. You've had like 200 zillion years to grow something/ do something interesting. But you still keep zipping around over my pond. I mean, you're pretty good at it. I would think at this point.

Apparently, hope you like that shit. I don't know if I could handle zipping around some pond for 200 zillion years.

Is it all the same dragonfly in lots of sections? Ah.........such 'Michael Prescott' reflections.

"C'mon dragonfly. You've had like 200 zillion years to grow something/ do something interesting. But you still keep zipping around over my pond. I mean, you're pretty good at it. I would think at this point. Apparently, hope you like that shit. I don't know if I could handle zipping around some pond for 200 zillion years." - Tharpa
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They are imprinting on the collective unconscious time and space, what it's like to fly in 3 dimensions and one dimensional time, the parameters of everything they can see with their compound eyes, the flavors and smells of all the different kinds of tasty bugs they eat, the shapes and colors of all the plants, trees, flowers that surround the ponds, the large animals, birds, reptiles, dinosaurs, etc. they see, and when they are nymphs in the water they imprint everything that is going under the water, the shape of plants, animals, fish, etc.

We are spiritual beings having a physical experience - and so is every other living creature - holistically imprinting on the "soul" what it means and how it feels to be separate, what time and space looks and feels like, and what it felt like to be inside or occupy or inhabit a physical body, what it felt like to eat, mate, fly, run, walk, talk, and just live in a universe where time and space appear to be real and where one is limited inside a physical body.

excerpt from Randy Gehling's (age 10) Near Death Experience:

"She said that we would enter the light and become one with it. Before I could ask what that meant, she just gave my hand a little tug, and then we were inside the light."

"That was really cool! I kind of felt as though my body exploded - in a nice way - and became a million different atoms - and each single atom could think its own thoughts and have its own feelings. All at once I seemed to feel like I was a boy, a girl, a dog, a cat, a fish. Then I felt like I was an old man, an old woman - and then a little tiny baby."
http://near-death.com/experiences/animals04.html

The physics of "heaven" is very different than this life. The separateness and limitations that we experience in this life won't exist in the next. Because of the "holographic" nature of the spiritual universe we will feel like we are everywhere at once, connected to everything and everyone, able to change our "location" (I use that term loosely) and time and space simply by focusing our attention on it. Our consciousness won't be limited to a body - simply by "thinking" about it we will be able to know what it was like to be any creature in the entire Universe (not just the Earth), Golden Eagles, dolphins, whales, etc. And every nook and cranny, that has been imprinted and the information stored will be able to be explored simply by focusing our attention on that place. If you want to know what it is like to swim with or like a penguin you simply think about penguins.

"some animals are really, really, gross- let me just say disgusting, really. C'mon dragonfly."

Gross to us humans perhaps. And isn't that sad?

"C'mon dragonfly. You've had like 200 zillion years to grow something/ do something interesting."

Yes, and we humans have had how many millions of years to evolve, and yet we can't get beyond the racist notion that other creatures are less worthy than we.

Now THAT'S a deficiency, it seems to me.

I don't mean to come down on you, Tharpa. But I do like to stick up for God's worthiness in all the amazing biological forms he chooses to inhabit. Which is why I appreciate Art's description of the joys of being a dragonfly:

"what it's like to fly in 3 dimensions and one dimensional time, the parameters of everything they can see with their compound eyes, the flavors and smells of all the different kinds of tasty bugs they eat, the shapes and colors of all the plants, trees, flowers that surround the ponds, the large animals, birds, reptiles, dinosaurs, etc. they see, and when they are nymphs in the water they imprint everything that is going under the water, the shape of plants, animals, fish, etc."

Yes, dragonflies are beautiful, mysterious animals. I wouldn't mind being one for a while. In fact, I talked to a guy who works with plants at a kind of organic family farm here in Skane, Sweden. Really nice place, by the way. I asked him about dragonflies, because I had been thinking about a beautiful specimen I had seen. He said that they are territorial in their behaviour and like to check out everything that goes on the area. Then he said that if you go out and stand on a certain small bridge at a pond in the garden then after a while a certain green-yellow dragonfly will come and circle around you to see what kind of creature you are. Hm, I was dubious, but we did it, a friend and me, and yes, after a while it came. First it was hiding behind a small boat but soon it circled around us and then, satisfied that we weren't enemies, it returned to its ordinary chores.

What's so great about being a human being anyway? Compared to being another animal, that is. You have to work like a slave most of your life to get food and follow a lot of silly rules for your behaviour and worry constantly about life and death.

Great posts. Art, that's a wonderful description.

I have read that certain animals have a "group soul," not individual spirits as we do. I think that's conjectural at this point, but it's something to ponder.

excerpt from Michelle M's NDE:
"I remember understanding the others here.. as if the others here were a part of me too. As if all of it was just a vast expression of me. But it wasn't just me, it was .. gosh this is so hard to explain.. it was as if we were all the same. As if consciousness were like a huge being. The easiest way to explain it would be like all things are all different parts of the same body."

http://www.nderf.org/michelle_m's_nde.htm
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Dragonflies may be just as conscious as we are and every living thing may be connected to the Light. It's a holographic universe thing.

Remember on the Star Trek: The Next Generation they had a holodeck where they could program the computer to generate a whole world? Everyone in the holodeck was controlled by the computer, but they thought of themselves as being "real".

There are a lot of things I'm not entire sure of. I am suspicious though if all the separation we experience in this life doesn't happen for a reason - to teach the soul what it means and how it feels to be separate. Life seems to be one unending lesson in separation - from the moment we are born and separate from our mothers till the day we die and our deaths become a lesson in separation to the loved ones we leave behind. Divorce, losing friends, moving away, politics, religion, race, culture, language, dialects, war, I.Q., education, gender, sexual orientation, etc. The list in never ending. The ultimate lesson in separation is losing someone we love. Nothing else comes close.

I've read many articles that say that memories are tied to emotions. The more emotional the experience the more powerful and long lasting the memory it creates. The most emotional thing I've ever experienced is when my mom died when I was fifteen years old. I remember crying for three days. I can still get teary eyed thinking about it.

I could go on and on about this stuff. I've got to actually stifle myself to stop.

Continuity.....

Okay, one other thing and I'll stop. Something that I've noticed about near death experiences and death bed visions is the continuity of the experience. For instance I remember reading one death bed vision where the daughter experienced her mother leaving her body and leaving with an "angel" (or some spiritual being) the daughter said that she heard her mother say inside her head "it's as easy as walking through a door". Meaning that when you die it won't be like there will be period of time when you won't be conscious.

What I mean by that is that it's sort of like a song. We listen to individual notes but when you hear all the notes together they go to make up these beautiful recognizable songs. Our lives are sort of like that.

After we die all our memories, and who we are, leave at once, as one recognizable chunk of consciousness. We don't lose our identity, our "separateness". There is never a time when we won't be ourselves. Or as Josh Grobin says in his song, "After all, your still you."

Josh Grobin - Your Still You

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVHNHvkf0Ss

Janice Miner Holden has posted a review of Jeffrey Long's Evidence of the Afterlife on the IONS website.

http://www.noetic.org/noetic/noetic-now-issue-one-may/review/

Link no work Ronnie :(

The link worked for me, Kris.

Here is an extract from the article:

Of biggest concern is Long’s major premise: “[T]he afterlife is for all of us . . . a loving . . . realm.” First, he has generalized to “all of us” an experience that has been reported by a minority of NDErs. Of all those who have survived a close brush with death, only 10 to 30 percent later report an NDE, and 70 to 90 percent have no memory of anything. Also, despite their similarities, every NDE is unique in its contents, which defies a definitive description of “the afterlife.” In addition, the nature of consciousness during reversible, temporary death does not necessarily characterize “the afterlife” during irreversible, permanent death. Furthermore, a substantial minority of NDErs report distressing rather than “loving” experiences—a topic Long admitted was beyond the scope of his book.

Hi Zerdini,

The reason is because nde's are a under-reported phenomenon a lot of patients who have one won't talk to nurses and doctors because they be afraid of being called a liar, crazy etc.

I like to point out too in 2006 scientists were able to erase the long-term memories of rats brains for a month by injecting with a protein, called ZIP, that inactivates an enzyme thought to be essential to the continued storage of long-term memory. The probblem is with the assumption that the long-term memory is erased, however memory seems to be constrained and limited by the brain not produced by it.This delivers more evidence that the filter theory of consciousness is probably true rather than the production theory.

Hi Leo

Thank you for your comments.

The extract I posted was simply to show Kris that the link that Ronnie gave worked.

It does not necessarily reflect my view of NDE's.

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