Monday, August 31, 2020

Death as Going Home

Neurosurgeon Allan J. Hamilton reports that he is able to predict when his patients are going to die. He first experienced this premonition while assisting a veterinarian with animals. “I began to notice that there seemed to be some energy or light that spread out from the animals themselves, and then completely enveloped them right before the moment of death.

“Later, as a medical student, I became aware that I could perceive a pale yellowish hue around human patients, almost like the light thrown by a candle. This glow would seem to shine from underneath the patient’s skin. Invariably, when I saw it, patients would die soon. As their impending death drew nearer, the yellow-colored light grew more tightly focused around their bodies and faces.”

While caring for Harry who had survived a heart attack, Hamilton noticed “that yellow, waxy light in his eyes, from his skin.” There were “no symptoms like chest pain or arrhythmia. I had nothing solid to go on except my premonition. I told a white lie to the charge nurse to get Harry back into the ICU. I explained, “I thought I had seen a run of ventricular tachycardia on his monitor. I had just not been quick enough to capture it on the paper strip.” With this warning, the supervising nurse immediately granted his request.

Prior to this reversal in his recovery, Harry had shared with Hamilton his near-death experience during his heart attack.

 got to tell you that there really was nothin’ scary ‘bout it. I just felt at peace, loved. I just seemed to rise up in the air, like a puffy cloud. I could see myself lying in the grass. But it wasn’t like I was scared. I just felt like I was going home, like being on furlough to see my family during the war or something. You know, something that you’re jus’ dying to do. I suppose that’s a pun or somethin’. But you get what I mean, don’t you? It was like I was lookin’ forward to it. Like I’d been lookin’ forward to it for the longest time, and now I was goin’ to finally get there, get to do it.

Harry continued, it isn’t like I wanted to die or somethin’ like that. ‘Cause I sure as hell din’t want to leave Phyllis [his wife]. But at the same time, I knew there wasn’t anything to fear ‘bout what lay beyond this life.

After his cardiac arrest, shocks to his heart, CPR, and an injection with Adrenalin failed to bring Harry back to his physical life.

Allan J. Hamilton, The Scalpel and the Soul: Encounters with Surgery, the Supernatural, and the Healing Power of Hope (Penguin, 2009).

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Nonlocal consciousness

The first photo of quantum entanglement.

Mind apart from brain and body, an out-of-body experience (OBE), illustrates nonlocal consciousness. (1) The adjective “nonlocal” doesn’t make sense, however, unless we grasp its scientific meaning. In classical physics the principle of locality refers to the assumption “that an object is influenced directly only by its immediate surroundings.” (2) Einstein referred to this as “the principle of local action.” (3) The principle of nonlocality supports the conclusion that our mind must be caused by neural activity in the brain and body. According to classical physics, we live in a local universe. All causality involves physical matter and time. The speed of light limits effects across space, so instantaneous influence between separated objects is impossible. 

Nonetheless, experiments in the twentieth century (4) have verified that the smallest particles (quanta) making up all matter (anything with both mass and volume) partner with each other in what is now described as a nonlocal universe. “Nonlocality occurs due to the phenomenon of entanglement, whereby particles that interact with each other become permanently correlated, or dependent on each other’s states and properties, to the extent that they effectively lose their individuality and in many ways behave as a single entity.” (5)


Because every observation reveals only part of the entangled whole, human interventions in nonlocal reality are accompanied by uncertainty. Measuring for “light as a particle” reveals it to be a particle, but measuring “for light as a wave” reveals it to have the properties of a wave function. This is true for all elementary particles that exchange quanta. The founder of “Copenhagen quantum theory,” Niels Bohr, described these results as complementarity and the “logic of nature.” (6) 


Physicist Paul Dirac wrote: “in direct contrast to the ideas of classical physical theory, orthodox Copenhagen quantum theory is about ‘our knowledge’. We, and in particular our mental aspects, have entered into the structure of basic physical theory.” (7) Eugene P. Wigner, a Nobel Prize winning physicist, concluded that: “consciousness is the ultimate universal reality.” (8) 


In prayer to God, you can cross the universe in a moment.

1 Peter Fenwick and Elizabeth Fenwick, The Truth in the Light: An Investigation of Over 300 Near-Death Experiences (Berkley Books, 1995), 255.



4 Experiments verifying nonlocality under different circumstances were conducted in 1972 by John Clauser and Stuart Freedman, in 1982 by Alain Aspect, and in 2000 by Nicholas Gisin and his colleagues.

5 Italics added.

6 Robert Nadeau and Menas Kafatos, The Non-Local Universe: The New Physics and Matters of the Mind (Oxford University Press, 1999), 13.

7 Henry P. Stapp, Mindful Universe: Quantum Mechanics and the Participating Observer, 2nd ed, (Springer, 2011), 13.

8 In a paper entitled “The Place of Consciousness in Modern Physics,” quoted in Thomas Campbell, My Big TOE [Theory of Everything]: A Trilogy Unifying Philosophy, Physics, and Metaphysics (Lightning Strikes Books, 2003), 780.


Friday, August 28, 2020

Consciousness Beyond Life

Dutch cardiologist Pim van Lommel in his book Consciousness Beyond Life: The Science of Near-Death Experience presents medical research verifying that: “consciousness, with memories and occasional perception, can be experienced during a period of unconsciousness ― that is, during a period when the brain shows no measurable activity and all brain functions, such as body reflexes, brain stem reflexes, and respiration, have ceased. It appears that at such a moment a lucid consciousness can be experienced independently of the brain and body."

“Many argue,” he adds, “that the loss of blood flow and a flat EEG do not exclude some activity somewhere in the brain because an EEG primarily registers the electrical activity of the cerebral cortex. In my view this argument misses the point. The issue is not whether there is some immeasurable activity somewhere but whether there is any sign of those specific forms of brain activity that, according to current neuroscience, are considered essential to experiencing consciousness. And there is no sign whatsoever of those specific forms of brain activity in the EEGs of cardiac arrest patients.”


Van Lommel reports that this “endless consciousness” during a NDE includes “nonlocal aspects of interconnectedness, such as memories from earliest childhood up until the crisis that caused the NDE and sometimes even visions of the future. It offers the chance of communication with the thoughts and feelings of people who were involved in past events or with the consciousness of deceased friends and relatives. This experience of consciousness can be coupled with a sense of unconditional love and acceptance while people can also have contact with a form of ultimate and universal knowledge and wisdom.”


To explain NDEs, he turns to quantum physics and endorses “the not yet commonly accepted interpretation that consciousness determines if and how we experience reality.” In this view “consciousness is nonlocal and the origin or foundation of everything: all matter, or physical reality, is shaped by nonlocal consciousness.” If this is the case, van Lommel concludes, “Our endless consciousness predates our birth and our body, and will survive death independently of our body in a nonlocal space where time and distance play no role.”


Pim van Lommel, Consciousness Beyond Life: The Science of the Near-Death Experience (HarperCollins, 2010), 161, 165, 247, 223, 228, and 307.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Near Death Experience Research Foundation

After years of researching near-death experiences, radiation oncologist Jeffrey Long is convinced that conscious human experience transcends brain death. Long writes that in 1998: ”I started the Near Death Experience Research Foundation and its corresponding website, One of my goals for the site was to collect as many NDEs as I could and to collect them through a questionnaire that would make it easy to separate and study their elements. At NDERF we explored all of the elements in the NDEs of more than one thousand people, examining consistency among the accounts. In reaching conclusions about these accounts, we followed a basic scientific principle: What is real is consistently seen among many different observations.”

Jeffrey Long, Evidence of the Afterlife: The Science of Near-Death Experiences (2011), 1 and 3.

Long intended the God Study “to be an objective view of the powerful experiences with God that many people report when they are at death’s door.” He analyzed responses by NDE survivors to multiple-choice questions and reviewed their responses to open-ended questions. The study considered all the responses to the NDERF questionnaire from November 11, 2011, to November 7, 2014.” In this material, the narratives clearly verify: “NDErs were usually highly confident that it really was God in their NDE.”

Before their NDE, 39 percent of the respondents believed that ‘God definitely exists.’ “At the time they shared their NDEs with NDERF, an average of twenty-two years later, 72.6 percent of the NDErs believed ‘God definitely exists.’ To put this another way, there was an 86 percent increase in those who believe God definitely exists after their NDEs.” Combining the “NDErs who currently believe that ‘God definitely exists’ with those who currently believe ‘God probably exists,’ you find that this is the belief of a whopping 81.9 percent of NDErs — compared to 64 percent for the combined group before the NDE.”

Jeffrey Long, God and the Afterlife: The Groundbreaking New Evidence for God and Near-Death Experience (2016), 35-36, and 39).

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

After-Death Communications


Hospice physician Pamela M. Kircher reports that: “While After-Death Communications (ADCs) are common during NDEs and in the last phase of life, these visitations occur under other circumstances as well. People are often ‘notified’ of a death by the deceased person. ADCs are quite common in the days or first few weeks after the death of a close relative. Most of these communications seem to have the purpose of reassuring the grieving relatives or friends.”

But sometimes a visit from a dead loved one communicates a warning. For example, “A warning from a dead mother saved another person from a car accident. As a man was driving his usual path to work, he distinctly ‘heard’ his mother (who had died two years before) tell him to take another route. Feeling a bit foolish, he did take another route. Later in the day, he heard on the news that there had been a ten-car pile-up in the fog right where he would have been that morning had he not taken the alternate route.”

“I honestly believe,” Kircher concludes, “that everything that happens in life is for a purpose that will ultimately serve our highest good and that I am responsible to look for ways to be in alignment with that highest good.”

Pamela M. Kircher, Love is the Link: A Hospice Doctor Shares Her Experience of Near-Death and Dying (Awakenings Press, 2013).

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Contact with alternative realities


Hospice physician Pamela M. Kircher writes: “After talking with hundreds of people in the past several years, I am convinced that contact with alternate realities is the rule rather than the exception. Sometimes that contact takes the form of a near-death experience. More often, however, it occurs in the normal course of a person’s life, when they are physically well.

“People in the last few days of life are also in the unique position of being in two worlds at once. While their physical world is declining, their spiritual world is becoming more active. What usually need healing are their relationships.

“Sometimes it is difficult for people to allow themselves to die because the family members are so attached to them.” This may be why, Kircher concludes: “several people in my care have died when family members stepped outside for a moment or two. It was as if, at some level, they wanted to die alone or to save the family members the experience of being present at their deaths.

Pamela M. Kircher, Love is the Link: A Hospice Doctor Shares Her Experience of Near-Death and Dying (Awakenings Press, 2013)

Monday, August 24, 2020

Spiritually Transformative Experiences

Hospice physician Pamela M. Kircher believes Near Death Experiences (NDEs) and what she describes as Spiritually Transformative Experiences (STEs) that do not involve nearly dying are very similar. From listening to many people’s stories, she concludes:

"First, and most important, is that NDEs and STEs are two avenues to the experience of being in the presence of God. One is not more important tha
n the other. They are just different paths. Each is a type of spiritual awakening. Second, it is easier for some people to dismiss their mystical experiences as just an unusual event than it is for those who have had an NDE to do so. Lastly, it is difficult to differentiate between an STE and an NDE. Sometimes the mystical experience occurs in a terminally ill patient who has weeks or months to live.

She gives two examples of STEs that seem to have similar life-altering consequences as NDEs. “Prior to the experience, the scientist was a confirmed atheist. He felt certain that when we die, all that we are returns to the earth. In his spontaneous mystical experience, he suddenly understood the Universe and knew that it is all unfolding in exactly the way that it needs to unfold for understanding to develop. He could see how everything relates to everything else and how truly beautiful and intricate it all is. When the experience was over, he was changed man."

Kircher also tells the story of a woman who “was already feeling very discouraged when someone told her she ought to kill herself because she was of no use to anyone. That evening as she was recalling the encounter, she suddenly found herself surrounded by a peaceful white light that seemed to imply she was very much worth having around. She said that the experience was very unexpected. It was a life-changing event, and she has never felt so despondent since." 

Pamela M. Kircher,  Love is the Link: A Hospice Doctor Shares Her Experience of Near-Death and Dying (Awakenings Press, 2013)

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Grace will lead us home

The Pharisee Saul was persecuting preachers of the Way of Jesus until he was struck blind as "a light from heaven flashed around him." (Acts 9:3) After a follower of the Way explained the gospel to Saul, his sight was restored and his life transformed.

Writing as an apostle to the followers of the Way in Corinth, Paul explains: "But someone will ask, 'How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come?" He answers from his own experience: "Fool! What you sow does not come to life unless it dies . . . It is sown a physical body, it is raised a spiritual body." (1 Cor. 15: 35-44)

Former slave-trader John Newton in 1772 wrote the words to "Amazing Grace" after he, too, experienced a spiritual "resurrection." The words to the first and third verses recall his personal transformation and affirm his new faith in grace and immortality.

Amazing grace, How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now I am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come,
'Tis grace has brought me safe thus far
And grace will lead me home.

Grace and peace . . . Bob Traer

Saturday, August 22, 2020

Pamela M. Kircher

Hospice physician Pamela M. Kircher describes her own near-death experience as a six-year-old child, when a leaking abscess in her throat led to meningitis.
After her mother told her she would either live or die, and then put her to bed, Kircher had what she would later describe as a near-death experience. As if telling the story of someone else, she writes:

“The next
thing the little girl experienced was suddenly, inexplicably, being in the corner of the room near the ceiling, and looking down at a little girl in the bed. She was not surprised or frightened, even though nothing in her solid Midwest background had prepared her for an out-of-body experience. She was totally without pain and in perfect  peace.

“She had the strong sense that she was surrounded by God. She did not feel like a boy or a girl or a child or an adult. She experienced the essence of herself — the soul that had existed before she came into her body and that would exist when this life was over. She felt strong and peaceful and totally connected with God.

“Looking down at the little girl in the bed, she was aware of the girl’s pain and felt compassion for her. As she further contemplated the situation, she realized that she must be that girl, and then the experience ended. “That little girl was me,” Kircher writes, “and the experience influenced the path that my life would take. Partly as a result of that experience, I have come to understand
how tiny the distance is between the world we think we inhabit and the world of the Spirit." 

Pamela M. Kircher, Love is the Link: A Hospice Doctor Shares Her Experience of Near-Death and Dying (Awakenings Press, 2013)

Gödel's reasons for an afterlife

Alexander T. Englert, “We'll meet again,” Aeon , Jan 2, 2024,