Insight

Scientific Evidence of Life After Death Continues to Grow

Taken together, two recent scientific studies offer powerful evidence that the soul persists after death, and that souls can be communicated with.

The first of these studies was conducted by Dr. Peter Fenwick, a consultant neuropsychiatrist at the Institute of Psychiatry in London, and Dr. Sam Parma, a clinical research fellow at Southampton Hospital. The study has been published as "A qualitative and quantitative study of the incidence, features and aetiology of near death experiences in cardiac arrest survivors" in the peer-reviewed medical journal Resuscitation 48 (2) (2001) pp. 149 - 156.

The new study concludes that subjects have almost certainly had the near-death experiences that they reported upon resuscitation after they were clinically dead and there was no electrical activity occuring in the brain. This suggests that consciousness may survive the death of the brain.

The study interviewed 63 cardiac arrests patients who recovered from apparent complete death. 56 had no recollections from their period of apparent death. Seven had memories, and four offered complex narratives of their experiences.

They described feelings of peace and joy, lost awareness of body, heightened senses, seeing a bright light, entering another world, encountering a mystical being and reaching a "point of no return."

The researchers said that the contention of skeptics that these experiences are caused by lack of oxygen to the brain were not supported by the study, because the brains of the subjects contained oxygenated blood. It was also determined that unusual combinations of drugs were not to blame, because the drugs used during resuscitation were the same in all 63 cases.

Christopher French, a reader in pyschology at Goldsmith's College, University of London, offered a skeptical viewpoint: "Near death experiences...could just be the brain trying to make sense of what is a very unusual situation."

For further information about this study, click here.

The second study, which has just been announced by the British Society for Psychical Research, suggests that some mediums may indeed be able to communicate with the dead accurately. Skeptics claim that mediums are successful because of so-called "cold reading." This is a process whereby alleged mediums make educated guesses based on questions asked of the sitter.

However, the structure of this study removed the "cold- reading" possibility by providing a control group who asked the same questions of the subjects as did the mediums.

There were two experiments. In the first, each medium spent an hour with a sitter in a laboratory setting, with a screen preventing visual contact. The sitters were not known to the mediums. Sitters were only allowed to respond to mediums' questions with "yes" or "no" answers.

The mediums produced more than 80 pieces of information about deceased relatives. They achieved an average accuracy rate of 83%, and one reached 93%.

The control involved a panel of 60 people being asked to supply the same information about the sitters as did the mediums. The average accuracy rate was only 36%, with the highest achiever reaching 54%.

Professor Gary Schwartz, who led the study for the Society of Psychical Research said, "the bottom line is that there is a class of highly skilled mediums who are doing something extraordinary."

Dr. French at Goldsmith's College commented, "this study has results that are so out of line that one would want to have a very close look at how it was done."

In June of 1998, Whitley Strieber had a remarkable conversation with a highly insightful and unsual man, which he has published in a book entitled the Key. Among the things he said was the following:

"Your dead are not off somewhere in space. Their lives and beings are intertwined with yours. They see all that passes here, but can only affect it indirectly, if they can make themselves heard in the minds of the living. However, you the living are changing now. As this change proceeds, you are better and better able to feel the presence of your dead. You will find your dead in the immediate surroundings of their lives, for the most part, clinging to what they can of their memories, attempting to preserve their selves despite the magnetic attraction of what would envelop them."

It is beginning to seem as if a big part of the change involves our empowering ourselves to gain contact with the dead through the use of scientific studies like these, which provide evidence in the context of the west's logical mind and scientific method that the soul is quite real, and that contact between the living and the dead is possible.

For further information about this study, click here.

--Uhknowncountry Staff

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