Life After Death and the Next World
The Body is just a Vessel for the Soul and the Soul is Eternal

Life After Death and the Next World
The Body is just a Vessel for the Soul and the Soul is Eternal

Skeptics will remain skeptical and believers will continue to believe. Logically what we call the 'soul' will continue long after the physical body dies.

Deepak Chopra believes that there is no beginning and ending to life. And that birth and death is the continue of 'life', one process, a perception.

The afterlife (also referred to as life after death, the Hereafter or the Next World) is the idea that consciousness or the mind continues after the death of the body occurs, by natural or supernatural means.

In many popular views, this continued existence often takes place in an immaterial or spiritual  realm. Major views on the afterlife derive from religion, esotericism  and metaphysics.

Deceased persons are usually believed to go to a specific plane of existence after death, typically believed to be determined by a god, based on their actions during physical life. In contrast, the term afterlife refers to another life in which only the "essence" of the being is preserved, and "reincarnation" is another life on Earth or possibly within the same universe.

There are two fundamentally different types of views on the afterlife:
empirical views based on observation and religious views based on faith.
  • The first type are loosely based on observations and conjecture made by humans or instruments (for example a radio or a voice recorder, which are used in electronic voice phenomena, or EVP). These observations come from reincarnation research, near death experiences, out-of-body experiences, astral projection, EVP, mediumship, various forms of photography etc.

    Academic inquiry into such phenomena can be broken down roughly into two categories: psychical research generally focuses on case studies, interviews, and field reports, while parapsychology relates to strictly laboratory research.
  • The second type are based on a form of faith, usually faith in the stories that are told by ancestors or faith in religious books like the Bible, the Qur'an, the Talmud, the Vedas, the Tripitaka etc.

Many view the NDE as the precursor to an afterlife experience, claiming that the NDE cannot be adequately explained by physiological or psychological causes, and that the phenomenon conclusively demonstrates that human consciousness can function independently of brain activity.

Many NDE-accounts seem to include elements which, according to several theorists, can only be explained by an out-of-body consciousness.

For example, Michael Sabom states that one of his contacts accurately described a surgical instrument she had not seen previously, as well as a conversation that occurred while she was under general anesthesia. In another account, from a prospective Dutch NDE study, a nurse removed the dentures of an unconscious heart attack victim, and was identified after his recovery as the one who removed them.

This surprised her, as he had been in a deep coma and undergoing cardio-pulmonary resuscitation at the time.

Life Afterlife

LIFE AFTERLIFE takes an intriguing look at the eternal question: Is there life after death?

And if so, can we communicate with the dead?

Through personal stories from everyday people who claim they've made contact with deceased friends and relatives, to self-proclaimed mediums, to philosophers and scientists who've dedicated their lives to these issues, this film examines the fact and fantasy of the last great frontier.

The documentary was produced and directed by Lisa F. Jackson. Executive producers are Linda Ellerbee and Rolfe Tessem.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta - Cheating Death

Just when you think you're dead, perhaps you're not. CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta reports.

Dr. Michael Sabom reports a case about a woman who underwent surgery for an aneurysm.

The woman reported an out-of-body experience that she claimed continued through a brief period of the absence of any EEG activity.

If true, this would seem to challenge the belief held by many that consciousness is situated entirely within the brain though most or all the experience happened before the period when there was no EEG activity.

Many individuals who experience an NDE see it as a verification of the existence of an afterlife. This includes those with agnostic/atheist inclinations before the experience. There are examples of ex-atheists, such as the Reverend Howard Storm, adopting a more spiritual viewpoint after their NDEs.

Storm's NDE may also be characterized as a distressing near-death experience. Likewise, individuals who do not experience an NDE after going into cardiac arrest frequently lose any preexisting belief in an afterlife. Both processes, like most of the psychological transformations associated with a close brush with death, take place gradually over several years.

Greyson claims that: "No one physiological or psychological model by itself explains all the common features of NDE. The paradoxical occurrence of heightened, lucid awareness and logical thought processes during a period of impaired cerebral perfusion raises particular perplexing questions for our current understanding of consciousness and its relation to brain function.

A clear sensorium and complex perceptual processes during a period of apparent clinical death challenge the concept that consciousness is localized exclusively in the brain."

Near Death Experience

Blind Woman Sees While Out of Body

Proof of the afterlife? Here you can see a woman who has been blind from birth, yet can describe seeing many things while out of her body.

How can anyone explain this away? She had no visual images saved in her brain from this lifetime, yet she can explain the afterworld with vivid detail.

A few people feel that research on NDEs occurring in the blind can be interpreted to support an argument that consciousness survives bodily death.

Dr. Kenneth Ring claims in the book Mindsight: Near-Death and Out-of-Body Experiences in the Blind that up to 80% of his sample studied reported some visual awareness during their NDE or out of body experience.

Skeptics however question the accuracy of their visual awareness, and indeed of all sensory awareness of people undergoing NDEs.

There are many religious and physiological views of near-death experiences.

The NDE is often cited as evidence for the existence of the human soul, the afterlife, and heaven and hell, ideas that appear in many religious traditions.

On the other hand, skeptical commentators view NDEs as purely neurological and chemical phenomena occurring in the brain.

From this perspective NDEs are the result of purely physiological and neurobiological mechanisms. The imagery in the experiences also varies within cultures.

There has been recent research into afterlife conceptions across cultures by religious studies scholar Dr. Gregory Shushan.

The study analyzes the afterlife beliefs of five ancient civilizations (Old and Middle Kingdom Egypt, Sumerian and Old Babylonian Mesopotamia, Vedic India, pre-Buddhist China, and pre-Columbian Mesoamerica) in light of historical and contemporary reports of near-death experiences, and shamanic afterlife "journeys".

It was found that despite numerous culture-specific differences, the nine most frequently recurring NDE elements also recur on a general structural level cross-culturally.

This suggests that the authors of these ancient religious texts were familiar with NDE or something similar (e.g. shamanic-type experiences).

Cross-cultural similarity, however, can be used to support both religious and physiological theories, for both rely on demonstrating that the phenomenon is universal. Others dispute that there are cultural similarities.
The soul is believed by many people to continue long after the physical body dies. This is a belief system for many people around the world.