blinkstar.gif (494 bytes) Dee

This wasn't part of Dee's plan. People in green scrubs and masks hovered above her, moving fast like bees in those nature programs she liked to watch on Sunday nights.

 

"What were they rushing for?" she wondered? "What happened to her car?"

 

There'd been a loud noise then nothing. Dee closed her eyes to escape the madness around her. The beeping and whooshing sounds faded out.

 

There in the quiet, she noticed a river unlike any she'd ever imagined. No water, just a river of peace. She felt so calm. Beyond this extraordinary river, on the other side, Dee saw people walking together toward an amazing and indescribable light. Even though it was blindingly bright, the light didn't hurt her eyes. In fact, she couldn't get enough of it.

Suddenly, Dee heard more beeps and whooshing.

 

"She's back we've got a pulse. Let's get her up to surgery now!"

 

Dee's family was so grateful when she came out of surgery and eventually recovered. They knew they'd nearly lost her. They didn't know, though, about her near-death experience the peaceful river and the light. She'd kept it to herself, afraid of their reaction.

Professor Paul Badham of Lampeter University, who studies the philosophical implications of near death experiences, said that despite media hype, the phenomenon is quite rare. However, he says the reports of people who have had near death experiences tend to contain similar elements.

 

"It is very common for people to report going out of their body and looking down on their body," he said. "Going through a tunnel is also a common experience, as is being surrounded by light. The meeting of deceased relatives or friends is also commonly reported. People will also say that they feel they are in the presence of a spiritual reality. A Christian may interpret this as Jesus. One atheist who had an out of body experience said that he later realized that this presence was responsible for the governance of the universe."

 

Professor Badham said that the numbers of people experiencing the phenomena are rising as medicine improves and pulls more people back from the brink. He says that people who report near-death experience sometimes "see" things that would have been impossible for them to see if they had been unconscious on an operating table.

He relates the experiences of a man who, following an out-of-body experience, was later able to tell his dentist that there were two pennies on top of a cupboard in the room. Upon investigation, the pennies were found exactly where the man said they would be, although they were not visible from ground level.

A hospital on the south coast of England is currently testing the validity of near death experiences by placing unusual objects randomly around a cardiac ward. If a patient's near-death experience report includes the object and its location, weight must inevitably be added to their stories.

 

"Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve." - Max Planck, one of the founders of quantum mechanics

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