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Evidence of the Afterlife: The Science of Near-Death Experiences

Irreducible Mind: Toward a Psychology for the 21st Century

By Edward Kelly, Emily Williams Kelly
Ebook Edition 

This classic textbook bridges contemporary cognitive psychology and mainstream neuroscience with NDEs, psychophysiological influence, automatism, memory, genius, and mystical states. The authors' repudiate the conventional theory of human consciousness as a material epiphenomenon which can be explained in terms of physical brain processes and advances the mind as an entity independent of the brain or body. They advance an alternative "transmission" or "filter" theory of the mind-brain relationship supported by Frederic W. H. Myers (1843-1901) and American psychologist William James (1842–1910).

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Psychological Evidence of the Afterlife
By Kevin R. Williams, B.Sc.

Bruce GreysonChris FrenchPsychologist Chris French (on the right) has grouped theories explaining NDEs into three broad classifications that "are not distinct and independent, but instead show considerable overlap." French classifies them as transcendental theories, psychological theories, and physiological theories. French summarizes the transcendental theories by saying "the most popular interpretation is that the near-death experience (NDE) is exactly what it appears to be to the person having the experience" which is also the consensus among millions of experiencers. And according to psychiatrist Bruce Greyson (on the left), some NDE phenomena cannot be easily explained with our current knowledge of psychological models and human physiological theories. For example, it is not medically explainable how unconscious clinically dead cardiac patients accurately describe detailed actual verified events and conversations sometimes far removed from their body -- even many miles away. Read Greyson's wonderful article PDF on this subject. French summarizes the main psychological explanations to include the depersonalization model, the expectancy model, and the dissociation models. The depersonalization model suggests the NDE is a form of depersonalization -- an often disturbing view of detachment from reality within the self. The expectancy model suggests the NDE is just a construct of the mind in response to the extreme stress of being near-death. The dissociation model suggests the NDE is a form of dissociation -- an extreme response mechanism of self-withdrawal to protect individuals from extremely stressful events. There is also the birth model (championed by Carl Sagan, along with reincarnation) suggesting that NDEs are a form of reliving the pain and trauma of being born. Then there are the wide range of physiological theories of the NDE including those based upon cerebral hypoxia (a lack of oxygen in the brain); anoxia (a severe form of hypoxia); and hypercapnia (abnormal levels of carbon dioxide); the affect of endorphins and other neurotransmitters; abnormal activity in the temporal lobes; or neurobiological factors such as those put forth by psychologist Susan Blackmore and her "dying brain theory." However, all psychological and physiological models of NDEs have been falsified and refuted in scholarly, peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of Near-Death Studies (also here). The following articles describe these theories and how the transcendental theory of the NDE is the only logical theory among them all.

Psychological Evidence of the Afterlife Index
1. Archetypal Near-Death Experiences
2. After-Death Communications and Synchronicity
3. Dreams and Near-Death Experiences
4. Psychological Triggers of Near-Death Experiences
5. Psychologist Carl G. Jung's Near-Death Experience
6. Psychologist Charles Tart's Out-of-Body Experience Research
7. Psychologist Ken R. Vincent's Online Book "God Is With Us"
8. Psychologist Kenneth Ring on NDEs, UFOs, and Shamanic Initiations
9. People are Dramatically Changed By Near-Death Experiences
Scholarly Psychology NDE Papers
1. The Psychodynamics of Near-Death Experiences -- by Bruce Greyson [PDF]
2. NDEs, Cognitive Function and Psychological Outcomes of Surviving Cardiac Arrest - by Sam Parnia [PDF]
3. Near-Death Experiencer's Guide To Psychotherapy - by IANDS [PDF]
4. Implications of Near-Death Experiences for a Postmaterialist Psychology (2010) - by Bruce Greyson [PDF]
Scholarly Papers from the Journal of Near-Death Studies
1. Jung's Synchronistic Interpretation of the NDEs - by L. Stafford Betty [Web] [PDF]
2. Toward a Psychological Explanation of NDEs - by Bruce Greyson [Web] [PDF]
3. Assessing Psychologists' Knowledge and Attitudes Toward NDEs - by Barbara Walker [Web] [PDF]
4. NDEs by Suicide Attempt: Lack of Influence of Psychopathology... - by Bruce Greyson [Web] [PDF]
5. The Anatomy of a Transformation: Psychological Structure of Four NDEs - by Patti White [Web] [PDF]
6. Introducing NDE Research Findings Into Psychotherapy - by John McDonagh [Web] [PDF]
7. Adults' Reports of Psychotherapy in Integrating Childhood NDEs - by Jenny Moores [Web] [PDF]
8. Amazing Grace: The NDE as a Compensatory Gift - by Kenneth Ring [Web] [PDF]
9. Differentiating Spiritual and Psychotic Experiences - by Bruce Greyson [Web] [PDF]
10. Panoramic Memory, Affect, and Sensations of Detachment in the Dying - by Carlos Alvarado [Web] [PDF]
11. Review: Irreducible Mind: Toward a Psychology for the 21st Century - by David Presti [Web] [PDF]
12. Review: Other Lives, Other Selves: Jungian Psychotherapist Discovers Past Lives - by Ian Stevenson [Web] [PDF]
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