Researchers from the University of Southampton say they have evidence that there might be life after death. Per the article:

The largest ever medical study into near-death and out-of-body experiences has discovered that some awareness may continue even after the brain has shut down completely. It is a controversial subject which has, until recently, been treated with widespread scepticism. But scientists at the University of Southampton have spent four years examining more than 2,000 people who suffered cardiac arrests at 15 hospitals in the UK, US and Austria. And they found that nearly 40 per cent of people who survived described some kind of ‘awareness’ during the time when they were clinically dead before their hearts were restarted. One man even recalled leaving his body entirely and watching his resuscitation from the corner of the room. Despite being unconscious and ‘dead’ for three minutes, the 57-year-old social worker from Southampton, recounted the actions of the nursing staff in detail and described the sound of the machines. “We know the brain can’t function when the heart has stopped beating,” said Dr Sam Parnia, a former research fellow at Southampton University, now at the State University of New York, who led the study. “But in this case, conscious awareness appears to have continued for up to three minutes into the period when the heart wasn’t beating, even though the brain typically shuts down within 20-30 seconds after the heart has stopped. “The man described everything that had happened in the room, but importantly, he heard two bleeps from a machine that makes a noise at three minute intervals. So we could time how long the experienced lasted for….13 per cent said they had felt separated from their bodies and the same number said their sensed [senses] had been heightened….Most studies look retrospectively, 10 or 20 years ago, but the researchers went out looking for examples and used a really large sample size, so this gives the work a lot of validity….We just don’t know what is going on. We are still very much in the dark about what happens when you die and hopefully this study will help shine a scientific lens onto that.” The study was published in the journal Resuscitation. Dr Jerry Nolan, Editor-in-Chief at Resuscitation said: “Dr Parnia and his colleagues are to be congratulated on the completion of a fascinating study that will open the door to more extensive research into what happens when we die.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/11144442/First...

Views: 1036

Replies to This Discussion

"Hogwash" and "wishful thinking" fit my experiences. "Once it's gone, It's GONE." 

Don't cry for me, celebrate that I lived!

 

Sounds like proof by intimidation rather than by objective scientific study. I don't know why anyone, let alone Atheists,  would feel threatened by objective scientific studies on this matter. Atheists should not feel threatened by objective scientific studies on any matter. To repeat an earlier post: 

Objective scientific studies on this matter would involve determining that subjects whose hearts had stopped for minutes actually knew what was going on when they had no brain activity. This would be strong evidence that their minds had existed independently from their brains.

For legal reasons the subjects would have to have agreed in advance to allow brain monitoring of them when they were in dying situations.

In dying situations predetermined out of the ordinary events could be orchestrated around the subjects that they would not be likely to guess had happened based on reason. If on repeated occasions it was determined that subjects whose heart had stopped for minutes knew what was going on around them (especially from an out of body perspective such that they knew of things that they would not have been able to see from where their bodies were) when they had no brain activity then the objective conclusion could be made that there was strong evidence that the mind had existed independently from the brain.

Atheists, unlike theists. are not threatened by truly objective scientific studies. If such studies indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain they will still not point to the existence of a god. They will only mean that the mind may be sustainable from forces and particles in the physical universe that are external to animal bodies. There would be nothing supernatural about this.

As such, Atheists should easily be able to entertain objective scientific studies even if they indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain. Atheists certainly should not under any circumstances fly in the face of objective scientific studies as theists do.

Anyway, the objective scientific studies might establish that there is no evidence that the mind can exist independently from the brain.

On a completely anecdotal take, my wife died of "catastrophic brain injury" 3 years ago. She fell down a flight of stairs and landed on her head on a concrete landing. She "lasted" on life support for 57 hours. I was at her bedside virtually the entire time. I was talking to her, holding her, trying to get any kind of rise or reaction from her. Nada. Nothing. Zip. Zilch. Not one single fluttering of the eyelids, movement of the eyes, or muscular movement anywhere. (except breathing issues due to no swallowing response). Her heart was beating and she was getting plenty of oxygen. This is just observational to me, but if your brain is dead, than you are dead. I urge everyone on this site to be an organ donor like her. Later I was told that her contributions helped 5 separate people.

I am very very sorry about your wife. I truly am. However, that event should not stand in the way of science. Once again, I am truly very sorry about your wife but her unfortunate death should not stand in the way of objective scientific studies on whether the mind can exist independently from the brain.

Remember, such testing might actually, in a very credible way, establish that there is no evidence that the mind can exist independently from the brain.

Below is an earlier post I made that describes what objective scientific studies on the matter might involve: 

Objective scientific studies on this matter would involve determining that subjects whose hearts had stopped for minutes actually knew what was going on when they had no brain activity. This would be strong evidence that their minds had existed independently from their brains.

For legal reasons the subjects would have to have agreed in advance to allow brain monitoring of them when they were in dying situations.

In dying situations predetermined out of the ordinary events could be orchestrated around the subjects that they would not be likely to guess had happened based on reason. If on repeated occasions it was determined that subjects whose heart had stopped for minutes knew what was going on around them (especially from an out of body perspective such that they knew of things that they would not have been able to see from where their bodies were) when they had no brain activity then the objective conclusion could be made that there was strong evidence that the mind had existed independently from the brain.

Atheists, unlike theists. are not threatened by truly objective scientific studies. If such studies indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain they will still not point to the existence of a god. They will only mean that the mind may be sustainable from forces and particles in the physical universe that are external to animal bodies. There would be nothing supernatural about this.

As such, Atheists should easily be able to entertain objective scientific studies even if they indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain. Atheists certainly should not under any circumstances fly in the face of objective scientific studies as theists do.

Anyway, the objective scientific studies might establish that there is no evidence that the mind can exist independently from the brain.

I mentioned and shared this in the spirit of actual observation rather than study and scientific inquiry. Much of what is posted here has a degree of separation from personal experience and is more of an academic exercise. As it should be. Having actually witnessed death due to catastrophic brain injury, and obviously hoping for signs of a better outcome I just wanted this audience to know what I saw and add it to the conversation. This was not the dreaded "testimony" that drives religious apologetics. I draw no conclusions precisely because I do not have expertise in this field.

Christopher - Per my above post: 

I am very very sorry about your wife....Once again, I am truly very sorry about your wife....

I MEAN THAT SINCERELY. Beyond that I suggested what types of objective scientific studies might be used to investigate the question. Per my post:

Objective scientific studies on this matter would involve determining that subjects whose hearts had stopped for minutes actually knew what was going on when they had no brain activity. This would be strong evidence that their minds had existed independently from their brains.

For legal reasons the subjects would have to have agreed in advance to allow brain monitoring of them when they were in dying situations.

In dying situations predetermined out of the ordinary events could be orchestrated around the subjects that they would not be likely to guess had happened based on reason. If on repeated occasions it was determined that subjects whose heart had stopped for minutes knew what was going on around them (especially from an out of body perspective such that they knew of things that they would not have been able to see from where their bodies were) when they had no brain activity then the objective conclusion could be made that there was strong evidence that the mind had existed independently from the brain.

Atheists, unlike theists. are not threatened by truly objective scientific studies. If such studies indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain they will still not point to the existence of a god. They will only mean that the mind may be sustainable from forces and particles in the physical universe that are external to animal bodies. There would be nothing supernatural about this.

As such, Atheists should easily be able to entertain objective scientific studies even if they indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain. Atheists certainly should not under any circumstances fly in the face of objective scientific studies as theists do.

Anyway, the objective scientific studies might establish that there is no evidence that the mind can exist independently from the brain.

they will only mean that the brain may be sustainable from forces and particles in the physical universe that are external to animal bodies. There would be nothing supernatural about this.

That's the point, if the mind could operate without the brain, that would be supernatural. By your criteria if Jesus actually walked on water then it was perfectly natural.

Christopher, I am sorry to learn of your wife's fall and death 3 years ago. That must have been a terrible experience to go through. I applaud you and your wife for her being an organ donor. I hope you are well. 

There's definitely a virus going around Bert.

No Bert It's on the same footing as 'god does not exist'.

We have empirical evidence of mind/ brain interdependence from brain damage due to strokes and car accidents etc. 'The mind cannot function without the brain'  is a falsifiable statement. If the mind could function independent of the brain it would be observable on a daily basis in our hospitals.

The natural world we live in is the same natural world we die in, and yes, death is a showstopper.

I've always wondered about that.  What happens to a person's soul, when he gets Alzheimer's?  Is it like the soul is playing a video game with a busted controller, and the person's loved ones will get to heaven to hear his apologies for the last few years?

"I kept hitting the damned buttons, but nothing was responding!"

The mind cannot function without the brain.

Is this a falsifiable statement?

 

Bertold  - it might be a falsifiable statement if it is indeed false. That is, there are objective scientific studies that can be performed which might demonstrate it to be false. As I have posted many times in this discussion:

 

Objective scientific studies on this matter would involve determining that subjects whose hearts had stopped for minutes actually knew what was going on when they had no brain activity. This would be strong evidence that their minds had existed independently from their brains.

For legal reasons the subjects would have to have agreed in advance to allow brain monitoring of them when they were in dying situations.

In dying situations predetermined out of the ordinary events could be orchestrated around the subjects that they would not be likely to guess had happened based on reason. If on repeated occasions it was determined that subjects whose heart had stopped for minutes knew what was going on around them (especially from an out of body perspective such that they knew of things that they would not have been able to see from where their bodies were) when they had no brain activity then the objective conclusion could be made that there was strong evidence that the mind had existed independently from the brain.

Atheists, unlike theists. are not threatened by truly objective scientific studies. If such studies indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain they will still not point to the existence of a god. They will only mean that the mind may be sustainable from forces and particles in the physical universe that are external to animal bodies. There would be nothing supernatural about this.

As such, Atheists should easily be able to entertain objective scientific studies even if they indicate to a high probability that the mind can exist independently from the brain. Atheists certainly should not under any circumstances fly in the face of objective scientific studies as theists do.

Anyway, the objective scientific studies might establish that there is no evidence that the mind can exist independently from the brain.

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