After the First Death Essay - 365 Words - StudyMode

Despite accurately reporting the facts, Sabom himself has encouraged these misrepresentations. Though he informs the reader that Pam's experience began well before standstill, he reveals this incidentally, so that a careful reading of the text is required to discern the point. For instance, just after describing Pam's recollections of an operating room conversation, he notes, almost as an afterthought, that cardiac arrest definitely be needed" [emphasis mine] (Sabom, "Light" 42). He then goes on to assert that the very features of her experience which cannot be timed happened standstill. At first, Sabom only this by describing the cooling of blood leading to standstill describing the remainder of Pam's near-death experience (42-46). Then Sabom turns to a discussion of whether Pam was "really" dead during a portion of her standstill state:

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After the First Death Summary 5 May 2017 ..

It should be recognized that if these are valid objections tocounting death as an evil, they will apply to many other supposed evilsas well. The first type of objection is expressed in general form bythe common remark that what you don't know can't hurt you. It meansthat even if a man is betrayed by his friends, ridiculed behind hisback, and despised by people who tread him politely to his face, none ofit can be counted as a misfortune for him so long as he does not suffer asa result. It means that a man is not injured if his wishes are ignoredby the executor of his will, or if, after his death, the belief becomescurrent that all the literary works on which his fame rest were reallywritten by his brother, who died in Mexico at the age of 28. It seemsto me worth asking what assumptions about good and evil lead to thesedrastic restrictions.

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Two mischaracterizations of this case are particularly noteworthy, as their errors of fact greatly exaggerate the force of this NDE as evidence for survival after death. First, in their write-up of the first prospective study of NDEs, van Lommel and colleagues write:

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But is there actually strong evidence of veridical paranormal perception in Ring and Cooper's sample of blind NDErs? One reason Fox questions the significance of this study is that those known to acquire sight for the first time, or reacquire it after a very long time, have difficulty making sense of their visual sensations. He notes the case of a 52-year-man who, after receiving corneal grafts, could not visually identify a lathe that he was otherwise well-acquainted with—by touch—unless he was given the opportunity to touch it. Continually frustrated at his inability to interpret his visual sensations, he eventually took his own life a full two years after the operation (Fox 225-226). By contrast, Ring and Cooper's blind NDErs are said to have "virtually immediately [gained] the ability to perceive accurately just such things as hospitals and streetlights with virtually no difficulty whatsoever" (226). While Ring and Cooper interpret this as evidence of a previously unknown sort of synesthetic perception 'transcending' normal human vision (224), Fox points out that more mundane sources—such as learning from mass media or NDE researchers that OBEs, tunnels, and lights are to be expected during near-death crises—might more satisfactorily explain the blind NDErs' testimonies (239). Irwin notes similar possibilities:

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By implying that those who reject NDEs as evidence for survival are advocates of some pernicious scientism, Tart presumes that the very issue of contention has already been resolved: that NDEs really are evidence for survival of bodily death. But, of course, this conclusion has been established beyond a reasonable doubt; in fact, it is not even clear that the survivalist interpretation of NDEs is more likely to be true than false. Moreover, Tart fails to recognize that there are perfectly legitimate reasons for maintaining that NDEs are visions of an afterlife—reasons that I have outlined in this essay because few people who've thought about NDEs have even been aware of them.

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For those experienced in spiritual travel who were able to enter spiritual states of light, sound, and emptiness during life,the first bardo mayoffer an opportunity to enter into these areas shortly after thetime of death.