I. Context of experience: either A or B must be met
A. Symptoms or signs suggesting serious medical illness or injury,
or physiological crisis/accident of some kind; or,
B. Experiencer's expectation or sense of imminent death.
II. Content of experience: an intense awareness, sense, or experience
of "otherworldiness" - whether pleasant or unpleasant, strange or
ecstatic. Episode can be brief and consist of only one or two ele-
ments, or can be more involved, even lengthy, and consist of multiple
elements. Elements commonly experienced are:
* Visualizing or experiencing being apart from the physical
body, perhaps with the ability to change locations.
* Greatly enhanced cognition (thoughts very clear, rapid, and
* A darkness or light that is perceived as alive and intelli-
gent and powerful.
* Sensation of movement and/or a sense of presence (hyper
* Sudden overwhelming floods of emotion or feelings.
* Encounter with an identified deceased person or animal, or
an encounter with an apparently nonphysical entity.
* Life review (like a movie or in segments, or a reliving).
* Information can be imparted, perhaps dialogue.
III. Typical to the experience:
A. Near-death states can occur to anyone at any age, including new
borns and infants, and remain vivid and coherent lifelong (un-
less societal or family pressure weakens memory clusters - re-
pression more common with child experiencers than with teen
agers or adults).
B. Children's episodes are usually brief and encompass few elements.
The closer the child is to puberty, the greater the possibility
of longer, more complicated scenarios.
C. The pattern of psychological and physiological aftereffects seems
more dependent on the intensity of the experience, than on any
particular imagery or length of exposure to darkness or light.
D. Attitudes and feelings significant others display after the ex-
periencer revives directly influence how readily he or she can
integrate the experience. Episode content is secondary to that
initial climate of interest or disinterest.