reply to post by DestroyDestroyDestroy
Thank you very much for your response and the links!
I agree that, certainly, there can be a chemical aspect to the process of dying, and that these chemicals can cause hallucinations. I've heard of
the lab-induced hallucinations, specifically the one you provided the links on, but I don't find them as convincing as you (and a lot of other people)
do. The laboratory experiments don't produce the same profound life-changing effects as an NDE, nor the same depth or consistency of vision.
Also, I don't think the research of lab-induced NDEs is as strong or compelling what is being suggested by many. (I took out the possible offending
substance from this text and replaced it with XXX to try to keep with the rules of posting here. I hope this is OK
Strassman advanced the theory that a massive release of XXX from the pineal gland prior to death or near-death was the cause of the near-death
experience phenomenon. Only two of his test subjects reported NDE-like aural or visual hallucinations, although many reported feeling as though they
had entered a state similar to the classical NDE. His explanation for this was the possible lack of panic involved in the clinical setting and
possible dosage differences between those administered and those encountered in actual NDE cases. All subjects in the study were also very experienced
users of XXX and/or other psychedelic/entheogenic agents. Some speculators consider that if subjects without prior knowledge on the effects of XXX had
been used during the experiment, more volunteers would have reported NDE. Critics have argued that neurobiological models often fail to explain NDEs
that result from close brushes with death, where the brain does not actually suffer physical trauma, such as a near-miss automobile accident. Such
events may however have neurobiological effects caused by stress.
So only two test subjects reported anything close to an NDE, but even those weren't classical NDE experiences. They had explanations for it, but this
is far from any real evidence that NDEs are XXX-induced hallucinations.
Also, this line of debunking doesn't even touch on what I think is some of the most persuasive arguments for the NDE being more than a hallucination
-- the OBEs where people are able to see and verify things they could not otherwise see or know. The woman that saw the red shoe on the rooftop of
the hospital comes to mind, as an example. Also blind people actually having sight during and OBE - many documented cases of that phenomenon, and
also very compelling. To me, this is evidence that their consciousness was able to physically separate from the body, and the implication being that
it could "survive" outside of the body.
The problem with this evidence, though is that it tends to be anecdotal/retrospective.... such verifiable observations that occur while there is
evidence that someone is dead happen rarely. As much as I think these stories are amazing and as much as they may convince those that experience it
first hand and those who are there to verify what they person "saw" during their OBE, they are ultimately still just rare individual experiences.
They are not something that can realistically be reproduced in great numbers for a repeatable and "statistically meaningful" study. So what I
considered to be some of the most compelling evidence for life after death are really "just" rare anecdotes. Skeptics will almost always be able to
claim that someone was lying - that the NDEr as well as the hospital personal (or whomever verified what was seen and heard while the patient was
dead) were just seeking attention/fame/money.
Thanks again for the links.
I know we won't likely come to an agreement on all of this, but I respect your position and I am enjoying the
conversation. I do agree that we cannot absolutely know anything for certain right now.
edit on 23-4-2013 by VegHead because: (no reason