UK and US researchers are about to undertake a huge, 3-year study on near-death experiences (NDEs) in patients who have experienced cardiac arrest.

Doctors will study 1,500 of these survivors to see if they had the typical NDE, with the tunnel of light, floating above themselves and seeing doctors and nurses trying to save them, seeing friends and relatives, etc. As part of the test, the doctors are placing images on high shelves in resuscitation areas of their hospitals, where they can only be seen from above.

In BBC News, Jane Dreaper quotes Dr. Sam Parnia, who is heading up the study, as saying, “If you can demonstrate that consciousness continues after the brain switches off, it allows for the possibility that the consciousness is a separate entity. It is unlikely that we will find many cases where this happens, but we have to be open-minded.

“And if no one sees the pictures, it shows these experiences are illusions or false memories. This is a mystery that we can now subject to scientific study?What people experience during this period of cardiac arrest provides a unique window of understanding into what we are all likely to experience during the dying process.”

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