Getting Comfortable With Near Death Experiences: Out of One’s Mind or Beyond the Brain? The Challenge of Interpreting Near-Death Experiences

January 1, 2014
Dean Radin, PhD

Radin D. (2014). Getting comfortable with near death experiences. Out of one’s mind or beyond the brain? The challenge of interpreting near-death experiences. Missouri Medicine111(1), 24–28.


With one exception, near-death experiences (NDEs) may be interpreted as unusual forms of hallucinations associated with the injured or dying brain. The exception involves perceptions described from vantage points outside the body that are later confirmed to be correct and could not have been inferred. Over a century of laboratory studies have investigated whether it is possible in principle for the mind to transcend the physical boundaries of the brain. The cumulative experimental database strongly indicates that it can. It is not clear that this implies the mind is separate from the brain, but it does suggest that a comprehensive explanation for NDEs will require revisions to present scientific assumptions about the brain-mind relationship.

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