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Death is a Process not a "Moment in Time" - Thoughts on How We Define Death -

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posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 09:50 AM
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Now, I am by no means a science student and I admittedly know only basics, however after reading several articles recently, the concept and realisation that death is not a one-time event but a slow process has really raised some interesting questions in my mind.

If, as we now understand, death is a timely process, whereby our bodies shut down in phases, shouldn't there be more thought put into how we treat bodies immediately after death?

I was reading a book by P.H Atwater recently, and in it I read the following:


It didn't take long for brain death to be deemed unsuitable as a dependable criterion (to pronounce someone dead). That's because too many patients who were tested brain dead tested with biological activity up to SEVEN days afterwards, and too many of those used for organ donation showed increase in blood pressure and heart rate as organs were being removed."

P.H Atwater, The Book of Near Death Experience

What is your opinion of this statement: is there truth to it, and if there IS weight and truth to it, should scientists and health staff be reassessing our criteria for death and treatment of bodies upon declaring death?




posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 09:55 AM
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It is so interesting you posted this now. I was planning a thread about this very subject- organ donation. I have the heart on my license because I truly believed it was the right thing to do, but have found several articles detailing the process (no anesthesia, heart rate soaring when they start the cutting, brain death is very hard to determine, that people are getting rich in the process, etc) that has made me second guess my choice.

Good thread btw.



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:02 AM
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At what age is our youth and growth over and we begin the spiral of aging till our death? That is when the death process begins. Ageing is dying. If your life is not interrupted by external cause then age will eventually bring to you, what will kill you, weather it be cancer or organ death. Sickness like a plague is external cause, just like being shot, car accident etc...

I am nearly 50, well into my death spiral. Eyes failing is the most notable change, after that would be joint pain. I hear my waste elimination systems will start to become problematic in the next years. Some people lose lots of teeth too, mind slows, forgetfulness.

Decaying life can last decades for some.


edit on 11-12-2016 by Xeven because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:12 AM
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a reply to: AlmostRosey

I have been reading on the same subject for years many authors many experiences, is an incredible subject very close to my hart.

Death is a process yes, for the families and friends of the person passing away, but for the dying is just leaving behind the aging flesh and liberating the soul.



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:13 AM
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Don't be an organ donor and you won't have to worry about someone cutting you into pieces while you are still alive.

I took that off my license years ago when I found how many people make money off of organs, even if they are found to be unusable.

I believe if we had socialized medicine it would be much better, a doctor gets paid no matter who he/she works on. You will still have favoritism with this and of course, money under the table would still be a factor, but most doctors are honest, it is the system that has flaws.

If a young person dies from an accident, then most of their organs are usable, getting a heart from a sixty year old is not going to last too long. A liver from someone who abuses their body consuming junk food probably is not a good choice.

I am not against organ transplants, just that there can be a lot of inequality in who gets these organs and another thing, the medical industry needs to inform people more of what not to eat if they notice organs giving problems. It doesn't involve medications, it does not mean a person has to completely alter their diet, but epigenetic testing can help to inform someone how their enzymes work and then they could alter their diets to compensate and not get progression of an illness. WE do not need so much added chemicals in our food supply, it is getting to the point of insanity. No wonder our people are getting all weird on politics.



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:16 AM
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a reply to: Xeven

I agree with that. We start dying many years before it actually happens. Even then, it's just a physical death. I'm most interested in what we're doing during the eternity of time that follows.



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:24 AM
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a reply to: AlmostRosey

I consider death when the brain no longer functions...I guess if you body is still on life support and their ceases to be brain function than are you saying the person is still alive? Either way if you are not conscious and it is a guarantee that you will not come out of it what does it matter what you label it...your are gone at least in a spiritual sense..although one can never know that unless deemed brained dead and comes out of it a year later..and I'm not referring to a coma where their may be brain activity..Symantecs at this point

One of my fellow co-workers said it best...as soon as your born you start dying
edit on 11-12-2016 by chrismarco because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:45 AM
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the main problem with defining death as an absolute in terms of classic science is this: There is death, as in "I die" and there is science which is "YOU die."

They are two different things. Watching someone die is NOT the same thing as dying. Scientists are often the least holistic people on earth, by training, and can't seem to accept the idea that what you observe is from from YOUR point of view and that is not the same thing as what is happening from the observed point of view.

Watching a man die is not the same thing as dying yourself, they are two totally different things, entirely different, as different as they can be. So one must codify any statements by saying, "observed death..." A "brain dead" person is OBSERVED as being brain dead, but from the POV of the body one cannot say it is the same thing. There have been many "cases" where folks have said, "he's dead" and come to find out "he's alive." POV matters, and by changing the language and stopping the whole "this is it" absolute nonsense we'd learn so much more.



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:55 AM
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You actually start to die before you are born because you are a mortal being. Its only the time (lifespan) that differs. When you do pop your clogs, that's it, the only thing that lives on or is passed on is your DNA and children. Oh and other information and experience absorbed by your genes! Do what is the point of it? Well I hate to disappoint anyone but there is no real point so I guess if your life hadn't come into existence in the first place then it would really have mattered. So life and death are pretty much pointless and quite frankly a bit of a bloody waste of time! Would it have been better to not have existed and been spared a finite life with all the stress and anguish the living experience. And life being so short and very short for some, its all a bit pointless!! If the billions that have died before you could answer the question after their death. What do you think they would say?



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 10:55 AM
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a reply to: Xeven

i am 68 years old and i have none of the problems that you listed , i suggest that you change your life style .



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 11:01 AM
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I watched my Dad die last year. I listened to his very last breath. Called the nurse who came and checked for a heart beat. His heart was no longer beating. I add he was hooked up to zero machines. I am curious...how long should they have waited until they called it? Interesting post. a reply to: AlmostRosey



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 11:02 AM
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CrankyOldMan - That's an interesting and valid point. Science has its own way of measuring and determining something, and that doesn't necessarily reflect in the individual that they are observing. Dying is a very different thing to the one observing the dying, and anyway - there is only so much we can tell from science itself, when it comes to death. I think we are extremely limiting ourselves by only looking to science for answers.

In terms of death beginning after birth, as some here have mentioned, I do believe this. Our bodies slowly decay over time, we are burning energy, muscle mass, our brain cells... everything is slowly dying. However, more than anything I want to explore the idea of there being a time when a doctor or health professional stands up and says "This person is now deceased."

Because there is surely a lot of repercussions to that. As indicated in the quote from the book I mentioned in the opening comment, there are people who have been declared brain dead but later woken up. Or, people who were declared brain dead/clinically dead, but were later found to have brain activity. It is examples such as that which makes me wonder - should health care professionals and scientists be asked to look again at how we declare death, and the process we apply to bodies after death?

edit on 11-12-2016 by AlmostRosey because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 11:05 AM
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originally posted by: jk0089
I watched my Dad die last year. I listened to his very last breath. Called the nurse who came and checked for a heart beat. His heart was no longer beating. I add he was hooked up to zero machines. I am curious...how long should they have waited until they called it? Interesting post. a reply to: AlmostRosey



I am really very sorry to hear about your loss, honestly. I have had two losses in my family this year, it's tough and I know it's difficult to get through.



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 12:10 PM
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Hi, I'm a hospice nurse and previous ICU nurse. I believe I can weigh in here.

First of all, death is a process that some might say begins at conception. We are all aging continuously and, in a sense, degrading slowly. However, there is an "active" dying phase. That means one is actively dying, meaning they stop being able to communicate, their respiratory rate changes, they may become agitated or experience pain or anxiety. Most become comatose, but it appears as though they're dreaming and not totally comatose. They say that hearing is the first sense that babies acquire and the last sense that leaves us when we die. This all, of course, is in the case of a death that you see coming, such as in the case of terminal illness.

Now, legally in the U.S., hospice nurses declare death after auscultating for heart sounds after one full minute and conducting other tests, such as the "great toe press." A doctor then is notified, sometimes a coroner, and signs the death certificate. When I was in ICU, the telemetry monitors would show asystole, then I'd auscultate for heart sounds and a pulse, and then I'd have to call a physician to declare time of death. Respirations tend to cease long before the heart ceases beating, so that's not a good indicator. Also, respiratory rate can decrease to the point where it stops for long periods of time, but then it can start back up again. Likewise, brain activity has been seen after the heart stops, but it doesn't last much longer afterwards, as the brain requires oxygen (which the blood pumped by the heart supplies) in order to function and can only survive for about six minutes after the heart stops. The body should continue to be treated with respect, and we still talk to them and warn them of what we're about to do (typical nursing care, you never touch a patient without explaining what you're going to do first), and it takes a while before the funeral home comes for pick up.

Unfortunately, in the case of harvesting organs, they need to take them ASAP, so I know there are times when the heart and respirations have ceased and the six minutes are not waited to ensure complete brain death before patients are quickly wheeled to the OR to harvest. What we call "terminal weans" are done in the case of brain death and when the heart is still beating, but ventilators are necessary to keep someone alive and the family decided to take them off of the machines that are keeping them breathing. This is a more cut and dry case because the brain is already dead. Once off of the machines, one simply has to wait for the heart and respirations to cease, then it is safe to harvest organs.



posted on Dec, 11 2016 @ 04:08 PM
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It's like cutting off a lizard's tail.
Only (if you believe in a soul) the soul leaves the body, while the body itself scrambles to find its host. Eventually its awareness dies down and so do movements.

Or you can liken it to batteries being pulled out anything while it's still on.
The device try to suck up much power as it can until it's dried up



posted on Dec, 12 2016 @ 07:13 AM
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a reply to: AlmostRosey

On 4 July 2016 I died on my balcony. I remember the pain.... so bad I could not breath...family said my lips were blue (lack of oxygen) with eyes rolled back into skull with no heart beat..... I found myself in the air... flying towards the sun..... until I realize it is not the sun but something shining as bright as the sun...... then I could see this large throne.... off in the distant it already looked massive.... and the person sitting on the throne was massive but I could not see his/her face.... I could only see parts (too bright) hard to look directly at it...


woke up in the hospital......



posted on Dec, 13 2016 @ 07:26 AM
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JackieIsinlove - Thanks so much for that insight. With the kind of work you do, you probably see things in a way others never would. It was really interesting to hear your points.

DeathSlayer - Amazing encounter! Thanks for sharing. Do you mind me asking - how do you view your experience? Do you actually see it as having had a paranormal/out of body experience that confirms some kind of after life, or do you view it directly as something that happened in the mind as a result of trauma etc?



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