"Life is a dream walking. Death is going home."

(Chinese Proverb)

Threshold between life and death

In 1975 an American doctor, physician and philosopher named Raymond Moody published his first book regarding near-death experiences in which he investigated reports on this mysterious subject.

His groundbreaking work enabled NDE to be taken seriously and has been the starting point for more investigations.  Moody's reports showed how people experience similar situations when they are declared dead by doctors.  People describe hearing unknown sounds and moving through a dark tunnel before they find themselves outside of their bodies.  From that point they observe doctors attempting to resuscitate the body as the person trys to comprehend this strange alteration.

Whilst outside the body people describe having new capabilities and composition from what they are used to whilst in the physical body.  Another aspect during their experience is the encounter of a being of light or spirit of a person they once knew who have arrived to welcome them.  A person then feels great comfort and warmth during this meeting point and without speaking directly as we do from mouth, they let the person know of their purpose and indicate the need to show the person their life review.

During this review people get the sense of being at a crossroads between the physical life and the afterlife.  However it quickly becomes apparent that it is not their turn to cross over and must return to the physical world.  A sense of resistance comes over the person and they relcuntanly return to their body and once they do there outlook on death changes dramatically because of their experience.

Various people have tried to explain this pheonominan ever since Moody's book came out attempting to investigate why this happens as the increasing number of people experience NDE's all over the world.  People have been studying brain activity to reveal more light on the subject which at times brings about more questions. Through research it is understood that the body can produce substances at the time of death which can give out these visions like a drug can which in turn deludes the consciouness of the brain.  Some research however has shown that the body's own producing substances are not specific enough to account for all NDE's.

One key aspect of the authenticity of NDE's are from people who are blind or disabled.  How can they possibly describe people and rooms they have never seen before.  Even children report about their operation in a very technical detail.

The net result in all this has shown how people change from being materialistic to a more spirtual life and death is no longer a frighting thought.  Another key seems to be the consciousness in the brain which is capable of leaving the body whilst remaining active in a altered state of being. 

A neurosurgeon called Dr Eben Alexander was convinced out-of-body experiences were hallucinations — until he went into a coma himself and had what he now believes was a glimpse of heaven.  This meningitis -induced coma proved to Eben that consciousness is independent of the brain, that death is a transition, and that an eternity of perfect splendor awaits us beyond the grave – complete with angels, clouds, and departed relatives, but also including butterflies and a beautiful girl in peasant dress who Eben finds out later was his departed sister.

Some scientists have come up with a theory to explain the phenomenon of NDE's.  They say such experiences happen when the quantum substances forming the soul ‘leaves’ the nervous system and enters the universe.

Dr Stuart Hameroff, of the University of Arizona, claims the essence of our souls are contained in microtubules within brain cells. These somehow dissipate into the universe if the heart stops — and return if the patient is resuscitated.