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The Day I Died - A Closer Look At Near Death Experiences 1/6
A Closer Look At Near Death Experiences (NDEs) II Corinthians 12:2-4 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago-whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of body I do ... more >>
A Closer Look At Near Death Experiences (NDEs)II Corinthians 12:2-4I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago-whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of body I do not know, God knows-such a one was caught up to the third heaven. And I know such a man-whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows-How he was caught up into paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. What is a typical Near Death Experience (NDE) in the Western Judeo-Christian world? The following is a description of a typical NDE from the Judeo-Christian world that was published in 1975 by Dr. Raymond Moody in his book 'Life After Life"A man is dying, and, as he reaches the point of greatest physical distress, he hears himself pronounced dead by his doctor. He begins to hear an uncomfortable noise, a loud ringing or buzzing, and at the same time feels himself moving very rapidly through a long dark tunnel. After this, he suddenly finds himself outside his own physical body but still in the immediate physical environment, and he sees his own body from a distance, as though he is a spectator. He watches the resuscitation attempt from this unusual vantage point and is in a state of emotional upheaval. After a while, he collects himself and becomes more accustomed to his odd condition. He notices that he still has a 'body' but one of a very different nature and with very different powers from the physical body he has left behind. Soon other things begin to happen. Others come to meet and to help him. He glimpses the spirits of relatives and friends who have already died, and a loving, warm spirit of a kind he has never encountered before 'a Being of Light' appears before him. This Being asks him a question non-verbally, to make him evaluate his life and helps him along by showing him a panoramic, instantaneous playback of the major events of his life. At some point he finds himself approaching some sort of barrier or border, apparently representing the limit between earthly life and the next life. Yet, he finds that he must go back to the earth, that the time for his death has not yet come. At this point he resists, for by now he is taken up with his experiences in the after-life and does not want to return. He is overwhelmed by intense feelings of joy, love, and peace. Despite his attitude, though, he somehow reunites with his physical body and lives. Later he tries to tell others, but he has trouble doing so. In the first place, he can find no human words adequate to describe these unearthly episodes. He also finds that others scoff, so he stops telling other people. Still, the experience affects his life profoundly, especially his views about death and its relationship to life.What are the current statistics on Near Death Experiences (NDEs)? A study (Gallup poll) estimates that 5% of all Americans or 15 million people have experienced an NDE. Almost 800 NDEs occur every day in the United States (Long, 2005). A German study (Knoblauch, 1999) indicates that 4.3% of all Germans have undergone an NDE, corresponding to 3.3 million. For France, the number of two million NDErs has been advanced. It is commonly accepted that about 20% of adults (18% van Lommel, Lancet 2001), who experience a full cardiac arrest (temporarily die) have had a NDE.
\r\nIn contrast to adults, our best research, so far, indicates that over 90% of children between the ages of 3 and 17, who experience cardiac arrest, report having a NDE (Morse 1994; Seattle Study) but their experiences differ from adults. Children have more vivid recollections and see the 'Being of Light' twice as often as adults. Children have shown a tendency to temporarily forego their childhood identities and become 'ageless and wise' beyond their years. In addition, the panoramic life review is absent in a child\'s NDE. Very young children, as soon as they are able to speak, have reported NDEs they had as infants or in the process of being born. Even infants who were delivered by caesarean section have reported having NDE's as soon as they were old enough to speak.The question that is begging an answer is, of course; 'Why the 90% to 20% difference in NDE rates for children and adults?' In my opinion, the answer seems to be fairly straight forward and direct. Children simply have not been corrupted into believing that it is impossible to live past the death of our bodies. As we grow into mature adults, we are literally bombarded with many false beliefs and outright lies; telling us that this world is all there is. We live; we die; end of story. We are told this lie over and over again. Indeed, it is against the law to teach a child in public school the truth that God created either him or her. We are assured, under the guise of scientific integrity, that evolution is the reason we are here. I have never found a hypothesis in science, such as evolution is, that has been so easily refuted by the scientific evidence that is readily available. The hypothesis of evolution is the biggest deception I know of in society. Besides being force-fed this deception of evolution as we grow up, all the little para-normal and miraculous occurrences that happen in our lives as we grow up, that are from the hand of God, are usually rationalized away as being mere coincidences or ridiculed as manifestations of superstition from an overactive imagination. Usually it is the adults in the child's life, or the members of his or her own family, that tell the child there is no deeper purpose to these coincidences in their lives. Yet contrary to popular belief, in God's world there are no meaningless coincidences in our lives. As we become adults we lose the magic and wonder inherent to being a child. As a child, we are able to believe anything is possible. I contend that our over-zealous skepticism we gain as adults is muting this magical ability and spiritually killing us as far as the preponderance of NDE's for adults is concerned. Surely, skepticism is necessary in discerning truth from deception. Yet, too much 'materialistic' skepticism can blind us to the super-natural world of God when we rationalize everything away as being mere coincidences that have no deeper meanings for us in a spiritual sense. A child has the magical ability to unquestionably believe in Santa Claus, the Easter bunny and even monsters under the bed. Yet, as we become adults, this magical ability to believe anything is possible is severely hampered as we find many things we believed as children are not true. We, with good reason, being blatantly deceived by our gullible imagination as we grew up, became more skeptical as we became adults. Yet, it seems our over-zealous skepticism threw the baby out with the bath water. God is far from the mythical figures of Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, though He is often treated as such. Contrary to popular materialistic' belief, God is indeed real; It was, indeed, God who did create us. God does, indeed, love us very much and God does, indeed, speak to everyone. Yet, our vigilant skepticism, that is naturally brought about to protect us from deception as we grow up, blinds us to the many different little ways the Spirit of God speaks to us. Though many people, who profess to be religious, will be offended if told that they are not listening to the Spirit of God speak in their lives. The truth is that probably all mortal adults suffer from varying degrees of this spiritual blindness and deafness as far as seeing and hearing the Spirit of God in their life is concerned. What we once could easily attribute to the hand of God, when we were children, is now automatically dismissed because of our over-zealous skepticism as adults.John 14:18-19 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you. A little while longer and the world will see me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also.John 5:25 Most assuredly, I say unto you the hour is coming, and now is when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live.Though skepticism surely has its place in discernment, we must be careful that we are not 'shutting God out' with too much skepticism. Some may argue that the adults dramatic drop in percentage of NDEs from the percentage of children's NDEs are for some other reasons, such as just not remembering them. Indeed, some of those other reasons may have a certain plausibility. Yet, these experiences are so profoundly life changing and real to the NDErs that do recall them that not remembering them is hardly an option that seems plausible (Rommer, 2000, pg.25). Especially since all deep NDEers say the experience was more real and dramatic than anything else they have ever experienced or witnessed in their lives. It is my firm belief that the losing of this magical ability we had as children, to believe anything is possible, is the main and primary reason for the significant drop in the percentage of Near Death Experiences from children to adults. It is the only option that makes sense in light of the evidence. The loss of this magical ability, to believe anything is possible, is the reason for our spiritual blindness and deafness to what God is saying and doing in our lives in the first place.Matthew 18:2-3 Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.The following is a NDE, of a young boy, in which the Boy questions God about many things. I found it very, very interesting and think it has an important lesson for all of us.Cecil's NDE (age eleven) My brother and I went swimming. He had a problem. I tried to get him out of the water; but in his panic, he pulled me under several times. We both drowned. He died and I came back. I can remember it all like yesterday. Just as I could no longer stay afloat, a strange sound, like ringing in my ears, started. A peaceful feeling came over me. I felt my spirit come out of my body and I went into a black void. That was a little frightening. A long way off, there was a pinprick of light. I moved toward it, slowly at first, then faster and faster, as if I were on top of a train accelerating. Then, I stopped and stepped fully into the light. I noticed everything; sky, buildings, glass emitting their own light and everything was much more colorful than what we see here. A river meandered around. On the other side was a city, and a road running through it to another city, and another city and another and another. Right in front of me but across the river were three men. They projected themselves to me. They didn't walk or fly; they projected over. I didn't recognize them; yet I knew one was Lynn Bibb. (I was named after him. He died a matter of weeks before I was born.) I knew these three men were looking out for me, like a welcoming committee, to escort me over the river to the first city. I had the feeling that if I went with them, there would be no coming back; so I hesitated. The first city was like first grade. People stayed there until they were ready to go to the next city - your eternal progression, from city to city. Behind me, and to the left was a strong light source, very brilliant and filled with love. I knew it was a person. I called it God for lack of a better term. I could not see it; I felt what seemed like a male presence. He communicated to me, not so much in words but telepathically, and he asked, "Why did you hesitate? I replied, Well, I'm kind of young to die." He chuckled. ;We have babies die.' I said, 'Well, there's some things I want to know first." He replied, 'What do you want to know?' What is death?' I asked. He said, 'Turn and look to one side.' As I did, I saw a bad car wreck. Several people had been killed. Out of some of the bodies a spirit came up to progress on. Some who did not believe it was possible stayed in their bodies and would not emerge. I asked if they could be reached and he said, 'Yes, some more quickly than others and some maybe never.' Death, then, is not believing in anything. I asked, 'What is hell?' He said, 'Turn and look again.' I saw an old woman in a rocking chair determined to sit and rock and worry about children and grandchildren and everything else. Hell is therefore a lack of wisdom and not moving on, choosing not to go any further, sitting there and doing nothing. 'How do I know right from wrong?' He replied, 'Right is helping and being kind. Wrong is not only hurting someone but not helping when you can.' We walked as I asked about the universe and reasons for everything. All of these things were shown to me. Then he wondered if I still wanted to return to the physical world. 'I do want to return." He asked, 'Why?' I said I would help my mother, whom my father had left with four children and one on the way. God kind of chuckled and asked me for the real reason. I said I would leave the earth a little better than I found it. Then you may return with some of the knowledge of the things you have learned, but the rest will be veiled for a time. Live in such a way that you will not be going back when you return here again. I woke up face down in the mud of the river bottom and was 'lifted' to the top. I threw up great amounts of water, then pulled myself out of the river only to discover my brother had died.Of course, single NDEs can hardly be accepted as conclusive scientific proof from which we can draw definite conclusions, because of the problem that the imagination of the individual may present in the interpretation of the NDE. None-the-less, there is a vast body of evidence (thousands of documented NDEs) in which we can draw overriding conclusions from in making solid scientific observations. To those who remain skeptical about the validity of these experiences, I point out that there is a vast body of PhD level evidence readily available on the internet, for anyone who has access to a computer, establishing the validity of NDEs as authentic. Recently two fascinating scientific studies into Near Death Experiences have been completed. One was completed in the Netherlands and the other in the United Kingdom. The conclusions of both these purely scientific studies confirm that human consciousness can, indeed, survive physical death, and that the mind and brain are, in fact, two different things. These two groundbreaking studies could very well force science to re-evaluate the current scientific 'materialistic' model of the mind-brain relationship. The best study of the two is the following: During 13 years, the Dutch cardiologist Pim van Lommel undertook a prospective study, including 344 consecutive cardiac patients who were successfully resuscitated after cardiac arrest, in ten Dutch hospitals. The result of this research study (published in The Lancet in 2001) indicates that 62 adult patients (18%) reported a NDE. Of these, 41 (12%) described a deep core experience. Occurrence of the experience was not associated with medication given or fear of death before cardiac arrest. In other studies, cases in which blood was extracted at the time of the NDE did not support the anoxia or hypercarbia theories. It has also been established that the drugs administered to the patients, such as pain-killers, appeared to inhibit and confuse rather than cause the NDE. The combination of all data from recent and retrospective research provides a large amount of evidence which can no longer be ignored or explained away. The fact that clear lucid experiences were reported during a time when the brain was proven to be devoid of activity (Aminoff et al., 1988, Clute and Levy 1990, de Vries et al., 1998) does not sit easily with the current materialistic belief system in science. Materialism holds that consciousness arises from the brain, so Materialism holds that we die when the brain dies. Current materialistic arguments are simply not plausible when this phenomenon is examined in the clinical area. Many different lines of evidence, other than the NDE studies themselves, establish that consciousness is indeed an independent phenomena that is capable of living past the death of our brains (The John Hopkins Study; Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) Studies). In other words, consciousness is proven with many concrete scientific evidences to be an independent and separable entity from the brain. In my view, the scientist who chooses not to believe this compelling evidence, once he has examined this compelling evidence, is not truly an unbiased scientist but merely a man stating a personal opinion.It has also now been established that the vast majority of NDEs (+95%), that occur in Judeo-Christian cultures, are positive or heaven-like in nature, but there is a significant minority of 4-5 percent that are described as being negative, distressing or hellish in nature (15% adults, 3% children; PMH Atwater) (15% adults, 1% children; Bonefant, 2001). The typical heaven-like positive 'deep core' NDE of Judeo-Christian culture is extremely interesting. The NDE never deviates from the basic Judeo/Christian belief system of a heavenly paradise with a Supreme and Omniscient Creator, Who appears in the NDEs as the 'Being of Light'. The positive deep core Judeo-Christian NDEs all talk of the 'All-Knowing Light', Jesus, Supreme Being. All references in Judeo-Christian NDEs to God/Jesus/Supreme Being are always referenced to the indescribably bright light coming from God. Overwhelming feelings of being loved by this Most High Omniscient Being of Bright Brilliant Pure Light are also mentioned in all deep Judeo-Christian NDEs. I also find it extremely interesting that this 'Bright Brilliant Pure Light' is always associated with God, however 'God' may appear to the person (whether purely as Brilliant Light or as the person of Jesus who gives off Brilliant Light. The Judeo-Christian NDErs always refer to this 'Being of Brilliant Light as alive (AS LIFE), as all knowing, as all powerful, as the source of all life, as the source of all love; in other words, as the Lord God Almighty. Every deep Judeo-Christian NDEr says the most real and dramatic event to have ever occurred at anytime in their lives was to be in the presence of 'The Being of Light'. The reports of the positive transformations in these people lives are profound and well documented. They are literally changed for life no matter how many years past the NDE they are surveyed. These people who experience The Being of Brilliant Light become much more concerned with their fellow man. They come back to this world emphasizing the need for love of all people. Many adult NDErs who have experienced The Light find it difficult to cope in this dog eat dog world until they find a job that is more oriented to Human service.1 John 1:5 This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. John 12:36 While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of light.' These things Jesus spoke, and, departed , and was hidden from them.Contrary to what was popularly believed for many years following Raymond Moody's best selling book 'Life after Life' in 1975, not all NDEs from around the world fall into the same definitive categories. Though it was, and still is, somewhat difficult to find differentiating factors of how a specific denomination of religion affects NDEs within the Judeo-Christian culture, it is now commonly known that profoundly different cultures have profoundly different NDEs. Though NDEs may be similar in their basic structure across cultures, they are vastly different in their level of pleasure to the NDEr. This is because of the differences between the cultures in prevalence of encounters with 'The Being of Light' in a heavenly paradise. The only plausible explanation that makes sense is that the underlying philosophical basis, belief system or religious underpinnings, under which the society operates, has a major impact on the types of NDEs that occur within that specific culture. Several scientific studies (Pasricha, 1986, Schorer, 1985-86; Kellehear, 1993; Murphy 1999,2001) have indicated the phenomenologies of NDEs are indeed culture bound. It should be stressed that the NDEs of foreign cultures do not compare favorably with the Judeo/Christian NDEs of the western world.In the NDE cases studied in India by researchers Satwant Pasricha and Ian Stevenson, it is common that the subject does not spiritually view his or her mortal body, as do many subjects of Judeo-Christian NDEs. The Hindu subject is 'taken' in hand by 'messengers' and brought before a 'foreboding official' who is often described as having a book or papers that he or she consults. The official discovers a mistake in the paperwork. The wrong person has been 'sent for'. The person is then brought back by the messengers to his or her terrestrial life, or the subject is "pushed down" and revives. The error supposedly made is often a slight one, as a person of the same given name, but a different caste, or someone living in a different, but nearby village, should have died and been brought instead of the subject of the near-death experience. Whereas in Judeo-Christian accounts it is never a clerical mistake by a 'foreboding official' that brought about the person's death.What is consistent in Hindu accounts with Judeo-Christian accounts is that some Hindu accounts do include a life review. However, in Judeo-Christian accounts the life review consists of seeing a panoramic view of a person's entire life while in the presence of 'The Being of Light' who fills the person with overwhelming love and forgiveness while reviewing their life. The Hindu accounts consist of having a 'foreboding official' read bits and pieces of the person's life (called the 'akashic record') and also consists of the person having deep remorse for not living a better life. No mention is ever made of the 'Being of Light' or of overwhelming love and forgiveness that comes from the 'Being of Light' in any of these Hindu 'life-review' accounts (Murphy 99). In his study of Thailand, Murphy points out that many times the 'foreboding official' reading the life review is anything but a 'Loving Being of Light'. He states many times the 'official' reading the life review, in non-western accounts, is notorious for his power to condemn people to hell. In Hindu circles, it is a traditional belief that the reading of a person's akashic record occurs immediately after death. This concept is widely believed by Hindus all over India. Though, there are a minority of somewhat pleasant NDEs for adults in the India cases, it should be noted that these 'pleasant' adult Hindu NDEs lack the stunning depth of beauty and overwhelming feelings of love and forgiveness from 'The Being of Light' that are commonly reported in the majority of Judeo-Christian NDEs. There are a few exceptions to this preponderance of negative NDES in India. I found a few very pleasant children's NDEs from India which compare favorably to Judeo-Christian NDEs. These include a reference to 'The Being of Light'. The fact that young Hindu children see 'The Light' while the Hindu adults do not see 'The Light', clearly indicates the false beliefs we gather as we become adults drastically influences adults having a negative NDE or no NDE at all. I have a feeling, as our knowledge grows, that a few of the NDEs from other cultures will have a few 'special' adults who experience 'The Light', but it seems certain this will prove to be a rare exception, instead of the norm, for any adult in a non-Judeo-Christian culture. The NDE reports from Tibet (a Buddhist country) are even more disturbing than the ones I've read from India (a Hindu country). Though there are some references to seeing light in these accounts, the Buddhist NDEr never encounters 'The Living Being of Light'. The typical Tibetan NDEr emphasizes remorse, pain, fear, disappointment and disillusionment as does the Indian experiencer. Yet, the typical Judeo-Christian NDEr emphasizes overwhelming feelings of peace, forgiveness, comfort, painlessness and love. Here are the major episodes of the Tibetan NDE as given by Lawrence Epstein in his thesis from the University of Washington.Episode 1: Generally, the NDEr (das-log's) is afflicted by an illness, and unlike the Western cases, has some time to contemplate its possible results. Although the onset of the NDE may be peaceful, it is most often characterized as painful and confusing.Episode 2: Whether or not the NDEr (das-log's) recognizes the signs of elemental dissolution as given in the 'chi-kha 'i bar-do texts, the excruciating psychic and physical pain of the experience is emphasized. The NDEr usually does not recognize he has 'died' for some time, perhaps until he has reached bar-do.Episode 3: The NDEr (das-log's) encounters the primary light, secondary lights colors and sometimes the 'dark tunnel' structure. Depending on the state of his knowledge he might recognize these signs for what they are, as he recollects the bar-do teachings. More often, he is confused and frightened by them. A partial life review may appear at this stage, emphasizing the 'das-log's remorse at not having led a better life.Episode 4: The NDEr (das-log's) hears the noises associated with the chos-nyid bar-do, such as the roaring of dragons, the shouts of yamas, or the disembodied voices of supernaturals.Episode 5: The NDEr (das-log's) systematically stresses the discomfiture, pain, disappointment, anger and disillusionment with others and with the moral worth of the world at large. The acquisition of a yid-lus and the ability to travel instantaneously are also found here.Episode 6: The NDEr, (das-log's) usually accompanied by a supernatural guide, tours bar-do, where he witnesses painful scenes and meets others known to him. They give him messages to take back to the living.Episode 7: The NDEr (das-log's) witnesses trials in and tours hell (it should be noted that the Buddhist concept of hell is of a transitional, temporary, nature, much like purgatory is in Catholic traditions) . The crimes and punishments of others are explained to him. Tortured souls also ask him to take back messages to the living asking for help in obtaining 'merit'.Episode 8: The Dharmaraja explains matters to the NDEr (das-log's), exhorting him to lead a moral life and spread the word among the quick. The NDEr is sent back by the Dharmaraja.Episode 9: The NDEr (das-log's) returns to his own body, with the same fear and revulsion with which he left it.Needless to say, this is absolutely horrifying. Thank God for the grace we have in God/Christ/Supreme Being if these accounts of Tibetan NDEs turn out to be truly as horrific as these first studies are indicating. The majority of non-Judeo-Christian NDE's that I have read about in PhD level papers and science magazines are, for the most part, deeply distressing no matter which foreign culture I have read about (Japanese, Tibetan, Indian, Chinese, African, Saudi Arabian and Melanesian). Of the few somewhat pleasant adult NDEs I have read about from profoundly different cultures they lack the stunning depth of beauty, awe inspiring descriptions of paradise and overwhelming feelings of love and forgiveness from 'The Being of Light', so commonly reported in Judeo-Christian NDEs. Except, of course, for the few children's NDEs in those foreign cultures I have read about. As a Judeo-Christian society, we should seek to conduct a major study on NDE phenomena throughout the world. It is our sacred duty as decent human beings to do our best to firmly establish the truth, so that we may warn the poor souls of any false religion how to avoid the horror. It is also apparent we should have a rigorous study sanctioned weeding out any false beliefs we may have in our own Judeo-Christian societies contributing to the minority of horrid NDEs we find in our studies, not to mention the fact that 80% of adults in Judeo Christian cultures currently have no NDEs at all. Though some complacent individuals may argue that such a study is not that important, I strongly disagree!! I find the fact that we, as a whole, are thoroughly ignorant of such an important matter as our after-life to be very, very problematic to say the least. I also find it very interesting that the deep Judeo-Christian NDErs who come back are absolutely adamant about the importance of loving others and are also adamant about having a deep, loving and 'spiritual' relationship with GOD (as opposed to just having the religious relationship with God). Every NDEr who has been in the presence of 'The Being of Light' will agree that these two following rules are the most important rules you can follow in your life. These two rules also happen to be the basis for Judeo-Christian ethics.Matthew 22:37-39Jesus said to him, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all you soul, and with all your mind. This is the First and Great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'Sometimes positive NDErs from a Judeo-Christian culture are also adamant about emphasizing we should be loving and tolerant of all religions from all other cultures. A small percentage even change religions from Christianity to what they view is a more 'spiritual' eastern religion. But then why do the hard facts of the NDE studies themselves betray this open tolerance of all religions? Do not be deceived by their ignorance for they are only searching for a deeper spiritual connection to the true God. They do not know that the true God is only found in Judeo-Christian NDE's. They are right to seek a deeper spiritual connection with God, yet they are very wrong to search through false pagan religions to find it. According to all afterlife studies I've seen it does indeed matter in what and in Whom you believe when you die! The NDEs themselves testify to this fact! It is my assertion, from the evidence that I've seen so far, that the Judeo/Christian belief system is by far the most desirable belief system one could have when facing imminent death and that a purely Eastern philosophy is one of the most dangerous philosophies one could have. Until I see conclusive and rigorous evidence that indicates otherwise, I will not apologize for saying the Eastern religions are false pagan religions that are extremely dangerous to whomever holds their beliefs while facing impending death. This may seem harsh but it is honest. John 5:24-25 Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears my word and believes in Him who sent me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.I also find it extremely interesting, the examination of the Shroud of Turin indicates that it was indeed some type of 'Super-natural Light' that scientists are not familiar with, which imprinted the image of the Man on the Shroud of Turin. Not only is the Light that made the image found to be supernatural, the image of the Man on the Shroud was imprinted on the Shroud by 'Super-natural Light' that came directly from the body itself! Yes, you read that last sentence right. The 'Supernatural Light', that had to be used to make the image of the man on the Shroud, came directly from the body itself!!!This 'Being of Bright Brilliant Pure Light' that is always referred to as God and is such a prominent feature of the Judeo-Christian NDE's and of the Judeo-Christian Bible is, by all reasonable indications and overwhelming logic, the same omniscient 'Being of Bright Brilliant Pure Light' that was responsible for the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, as evidenced by detailed scientific examination of the image of the Man on the Shroud of Turin.John 10:17-18 While he was speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him.Sources:Life after Life by Raymond MoodyA Comparative view of Tibetan and Western Near-Death Experiences by Lawrence Epstein University of WashingtonIndia Cross-cultural study by Dr. Ian Stevenson of the University of Virginia Medical School and Dr. Satwant Pasricha of the Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences in Bangalore, IndiaDr. Satwant Pasricha of the Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences in Bangalore, India, reports findings of another survey of NDEs conducted in a region of southern India. A population of 17,192 persons was surveyed and 2,207 respondents were interviewed for identification of NDE cases. Twenty-six persons were reported to have died and revived; 16 (62%) of these having had NDEs. Thus the prevalence rate of NDEs is found to be less than 1% for the general population of India. Whereas the rate in America is commonly given to be 5% for the general population.Near-Death Experiences in Thailand: Discussion of case histories By Todd Murphy, 1999: the following is an excepted passage from his paper. "NDEs manifested within certain, special, groups have been studied that reveal typical variations. Pediatric NDEs (Morse, 1985), and those of pre-literate cultures, as well as those of India (Pasricha, 1986), Africa (Morse, 1992) have all been looked at, and patterns have been discerned in each group. However, the most common approach to discussing their typical features has been to compare them to the typical Western NDE; to the pattern shown in the Ring Scale. We would suggest that the near-constant comparisons with the most frequently reported types of NDEs tends to blind researchers to the features of NDEs which are absent in these NDEs. Tunnels are rare, if not absent. The panoramic Life Review appears to be absent. Instead, our collection shows people reviewing just a few karmically-significant incidents. Perhaps they symbolize behavioral tendencies, the results of which are then experienced as determinative of their rebirths. These incidents are read out to them from a book. There is no Being of Light in these Thai NDEs, although The Buddha does appear in a symbolic form, in case #6. Yama is present during this truncated Life Review, as is the Being of Light during Western life reviews, but Yama is anything but a being of light. In popular Thai depictions, he is shown as a wrathful being, and is most often remembered in Thai culture for his power to condemn one to hell. Some of the functions of Angels and guides are also filled by Yamatoots. They guide, lead tours of hell, and are even seen to grant requests made by the experient.'The Gallup poll in 1992 was of U.S. adults, and found 5% had NDE: .05 = (number of those surveyed with a prior history of NDE)/(total number surveyed). That equates to 15 million of a population of 300 millionThe Seattle Study; Pediatrics by Dr. Melvin Morse and Kimberly Clark SharpNear-Death and Out-of-Body Experiences in a Melanesian Society by Dorothy E. CountsThere seem to be great cultural differences in beliefs about NDEs. In an Australian study, 58 percent of participants interpreted an NDE vignette as possible evidence of life after death and 15 percent thought they were dreams or hallucinations. (Kellehear & Heaven, 1989). This is in stark contrast to a Chinese study in which 58 percent believed they were dreams or hallucinations and 9 percent believed they were evidence of life after death (Kellehear, Heaven, & Gao, 1990)Several studies (Pasricha, 1986, Schorer, 1985-86) & Kellehear, 1993) Murphy 1999,2001) have indicated that the phenomenologies of NDEs is culture-bound.Researching Muslim NDEs, on the web at the NDERF home page, I find that there are only a handful of Muslim NDE experiences out of the thousands of NDE\'s they have listed on their web site. There is only one really deep Muslim NDE in which there is a reference to 'the Light'. Not surprisingly, this NDE occurred to a teenage boy. In the handful of somewhat deep adult Muslim NDEs that I have read about, the Muslim NDES never mentioned, the Light, Supreme Being, or a, Being of Light. If this holds steady for all adult Muslim NDEs, then this will fall into stark contrast to the majority of deep Judeo/Christian NDE testimonies of adults for the western world.The Light seems to be absent in Thai NDEs. So is the profound positive affect found in so many Western NDEs. The most common affect in our collection is negative. Unlike the negative affect in so many Western NDEs (cf. Greyson & Bush, 1992), that found in Thai NDEs (in all but case #11) has two recognizable causes. The first is fear of `going\'. The second is horror and fear of hell. It is worth noting that although half of our collection include seeing hell (cases 2,6,7,9,10) and being forced to witness horrific tortures, not one includes the NDEer having been subjected to these torments themselves. (Murphy 99) The Holy Bible by various Authors under the inspiration of GodGreyson and Bush (1996) classified 50 Western reports of distressing NDEs into three types:* The most common type included the same features as the pleasurable type such as an out-of-body experience and rapid movement through a tunnel or void toward a light but the NDEr, usually because of feeling out of control of what was happening, experienced the features as frightening.* The second, less common type included an acute awareness of nonexistence or of being completely alone forever in an absolute void. Sometimes the person received a totally convincing message that the real world including themselves never really existed. (note* according to one preliminary study , a similar type of this NDE may be common among the Buddhist culture in Chinese NDEs)* The third and rarest type included hellish imagery such as an ugly or foreboding landscape; demonic beings; loud, annoying noises; frightening animals; and other beings in extreme distress. Only rarely have such NDErs themselves felt personally tormented. The estimated incidence of distressing NDEs (dNDEs) for western cultures has ranged from 1% to 15% of all NDEs (Bonenfant, 2001). The results of prospective studies in which the researchers interviewed everyone who experienced cardiac arrest in one or more hospitals during a period of at least several months are noteworthy. In the four prospective studies conducted between 1984 and 2001 1, 2, 3, 4 involving a total of 130 NDErs, none reported distressing experiences. This finding seems to confirm that the experience is relatively rare in western cultures. note: Dr. Maurice Rawlings disputes this "low" number and attributes it to "suppression" in his book "To Hell and Back".