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Finding a Scientific Explanation for Near-Death Experiences

It's a controversial topic especially since there are people who claim to have died, went to heaven, and lived to tell the tale but what is the truth behind these "out-of-body" or "life-after-death" experiences?

Over the last decade, Dr. Sam Parnia of NYU’s Langone School of Medicine has tracked the brain activity of thousands of subjects in the United States and Europe, charting what happens to the brain in the minutes and hours after cardiac arrest — when the heart ceases to beat. He said that following the loss of heartbeat, brain function ceases “almost instantaneously” and the body stops producing basic reflexes such as gag reflex or pupil dilation.
However, Parnia said, a surprising number of patients who have been brought back to life report having had the capacity to see or hear even after being officially declared dead. Some clinically dead patients who have been revived, he said, describe “watching doctors and nurses working… having awareness of full conversations, of visual things that were going on, that would otherwise not be known to them.”

Given this, how can we then explain what happens in somebody's brain or body when they are declared clinically dead but were able to be revived several minutes or maybe even a longer period of time later?

(Image credit: Sharon McCutcheon/Unsplash)


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Think about how much weird stuff the brain does when your daydreaming, or sleeping at night. And that's while you're still alive and healthy. So obviously the brain would do some odd stuff if it were experiencing "near death". Among other things, the human brain (in comparison to animals) creates avatars. God, Buddha, Satan, Angels - whatever you want to call it. A brain that advanced could easily make you feel like you're having an out of body experience, when you're actually not. Back in 2010 I had what you call an out of body experience. A feeling so real I felt "like my soul was leaving my body". But I can't help but wonder if it were just chemical reactions coupled with a heavy amount of fear. But I also can't disprove the soul stuff. It's tricky.
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