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1  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / BBC: Near-death experiences are 'electrical surge in dying brain' on: August 13, 2013, 14:55:42
What do you guys think of this theory? It seems a bit more plausible than some of the theories I have heard from scentists.

Quote
A surge of electrical activity in the brain could be responsible for the vivid experiences described by near-death survivors, scientists report.
A study carried out on dying rats found high levels of brainwaves at the point of the animals' demise.
US researchers said that in humans this could give rise to a heightened state of consciousness.
The research is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The lead author of the study, Dr Jimo Borjigin, of the University of Michigan, said: "A lot of people thought that the brain after clinical death was inactive or hypoactive, with less activity than the waking state, and we show that is definitely not the case.
"If anything, it is much more active during the dying process than even the waking state."
Consciousness
From bright white lights to out-of-body sensations and feelings of life flashing before their eyes, the experiences reported by people who have come close to death but survived are common the world over.
However, studying this in humans is a challenge, and these visions are little understood.
To find out more, scientists at the University of Michigan monitored nine rats as they were dying.
In the 30-second period after the animal's hearts stopped beating, they measured a sharp increase in high-frequency brainwaves called gamma oscillations.
These pulses are one of the neuronal features that are thought to underpin consciousness in humans, especially when they help to "link" information from different parts of the brain.
In the rats, these electrical pulses were found at even higher levels just after the cardiac arrest than when animals were awake and well.
Dr Borjigin said it was feasible that the same thing would happen in the human brain, and that an elevated level of brain activity and consciousness could give rise to near-death visions.
"This can give us a framework to begin to explain these. The fact they see light perhaps indicates the visual cortex in the brain is highly activated - and we have evidence to suggest this might be the case, because we have seen increased gamma in area of the brain that is right on top of the visual cortex," she said.
"We have seen increased coupling between the lower-frequency waves and the gamma that has been shown to be a feature of visual awareness and visual sensation."
However, she said that to confirm the findings a study would have to be carried out on humans who have experienced clinical death and have been revived.
Commenting on the research, Dr Jason Braithwaite, of the University of Birmingham, said the phenomenon appeared to be the brain's "last hurrah".
"This is a very neat demonstration of an idea that's been around for a long time: that under certain unfamiliar and confusing circumstances - like near-death - the brain becomes overstimulated and hyperexcited," he said.
Striking
"Like 'fire raging through the brain', activity can surge through brain areas involved in conscious experience, furnishing all resultant perceptions with realer-than-real feelings and emotions."
But he added: "One limitation is that we do not know when, in time, the near-death experience really occurs. Perhaps it was before patients had anaesthesia, or at some safe point during an operation long before cardiac arrest.
"However, for those instances where experiences may occur around the time of cardiac arrest - or beyond it - these new findings provide further meat to the bones of the idea that the brain drives these fascinating and striking experiences"
Dr Chris Chambers, of Cardiff University, said: "This is an interesting and well-conducted piece of research. We know precious little about brain activity during death, let alone conscious brain activity. These findings open the door to further studies in humans.
"[But] we should be extremely cautious before drawing any conclusions about human near-death experiences: it is one thing to measure brain activity in rats during cardiac arrest, and quite another to relate that to human experience."
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23672150?print=true
2  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / Quantum physics experts: Quantum substances form the soul on: October 30, 2012, 19:28:19
Quote
A near-death experience happens when quantum substances which form the soul leave the nervous system and enter the universe at large, according to a remarkable theory proposed by two eminent scientists.
According to this idea, consciousness is a program for a quantum computer in the brain which can persist in the universe even after death, explaining the perceptions of those who have near-death experiences.
Dr Stuart Hameroff, Professor Emeritus at the Departments of Anesthesiology and Psychology and the Director of the Centre of Consciousness Studies at the University of Arizona, has advanced the quasi-religious theory.
It is based on a quantum theory of consciousness he and British physicist Sir Roger Penrose have developed which holds that the essence of our soul is contained inside structures called microtubules within brain cells.
They have argued that our experience of consciousness is the result of quantum gravity effects in these microtubules, a theory which they dubbed orchestrated objective reduction (Orch-OR).
Thus it is held that our souls are more than the interaction of neurons in the brain. They are in fact constructed from the very fabric of the universe - and may have existed since the beginning of time.

The concept is similar to the Buddhist and Hindu belief that consciousness is an integral part of the universe - and indeed that it is really all there may be, a position similar to Western philosophical idealism.
With these beliefs, Dr Hameroff holds that in a near-death experience the microtubules lose their quantum state, but the information within them is not destroyed. Instead it merely leaves the body and returns to the cosmos.

Dr Hameroff told the Science Channel's Through the Wormhole documentary: 'Let's say the heart stops beating, the blood stops flowing, the microtubules lose their quantum state.
'The quantum information within the microtubules is not destroyed, it can't be destroyed, it just distributes and dissipates to the universe at large.
'If the patient is resuscitated, revived, this quantum information can go back into the microtubules and the patient says "I had a near death experience".'
He adds: 'If they're not revived, and the patient dies, it's possible that this quantum information can exist outside the body, perhaps indefinitely, as a soul.'
The Orch-OR theory has come in for heavy criticism by more empirically minded thinkers and remains controversial among the scientific community.
MIT physicist Max Tegmark is just one of the many scientists to have challenged it, in a 2000 paper that is widely cited by opponents, the Huffington Post reports.
Nevertheless, Dr Hameroff believes that research in to quantum physics is beginning to validate Orch-Or, with quantum effects recently being shown to support many important biological processes, such as smell, bird navigation and photosynthesis.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2225190/Can-quantum-physics-explain-bizarre-experiences-patients-brought-brink-death.html#ixzz2AoAso3UH

Must say I find this article great! Atleast some people are coming up with some good ideas!
3  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / Scientists believe they have come close to solving the 'Matrix' theory on: October 26, 2012, 12:37:04
Quote
Professor Silas Beane, a theoretical physicist at the University of Bonn in Germany said that his group of scientists have developed a way to test the 'simulation hypothesis'.
The idea has been debated by the greats of philosphy, from Plato to Descartes, who speculated that the world we see around us could be generated by an 'evil demon'.
The successful film franchise, The Matrix, also helped spawn the idea that what we think is our everyday life is in fact a simulation generated by an all-powerful computer.
But now more than two thousand years since Plato suggested that our senses only give us a poor reflection of objective reality, experts believe they have cracked the riddle.
Professor Beane told Radio 4's Today programme that his proposal could be the beginning of a new period of discovery.

The test would see scientists using mathetical models known as the lattice QCD approach in an attempt to recreate - on a theoretical level - a simulated reality.
To identify what these constraints would be, scientists would have to build their own simulation of the universe.
They hope to see whether such an exercise would be theoretically possible - and what the constraints on the 'evil demon' might be.
Lattice QCD is a complex approach that that looks at how particles known as quarks and gluons relate in three dimensions.
Professor Bean said: "We consider ourselves on some level universe simulators because we calculate the interactions of particles by basically replacing space and time by a grid and putting it in a box."
"In doing that we face lots of problems for instance the box and the grid size breaks Einstein's special theory of relativity so we know how to fix this in order to get physical predictions that are meaningful."
"We thought that if we make the assumption that the so-called simulators face some of the same problems that we do in terms of finite resources and so on then, if they are doing a simulation and even though their box size of course is enormous and the grid size can be very small, as long as the resources are finite then the box size will be finite, the grid size will be finite."
"And therefore at some level for instance there would be violations of Einstein's special theory of relativity."
Philosophers have cautioned that there is still some way to go before we find out whether the universe is simulated. Dr Peter Millican of Hertford College, Oxford told the programme: "There are two main issues, one is whether the speculation even makes sense and the other is supposing it makes sense whether there is any good reason to think it is plausible.
"The other problem is evidence. It seems to me that the evidence that is looked for is not that convincing."
Descartes said the evil demon that he believed controlled the universe is "as clever and deceitful as he is powerful, who has directed his entire effort to misleading me."
But he countered that his ability to think was, at least, proof enough that he was real, writing: "I think, therefore I am."
Plato said that reality may be no more than shadows in a cave but the cave dweller, having never left the cave, may not be aware of it.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/9635166/Scientists-believe-they-have-come-close-to-solving-the-Matrix-theory.html
4  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / 'A place of butterflies, joy and big puffy pink clouds': Brain surgeon obe on: October 09, 2012, 15:14:55
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2214836/It-place-clouds-big-puffy-pink-white-The-prominent-neurosurgeon-convinced-theres-heaven-body-experience.html

Lovely story wish more skeptics would get the chance to have one:D
5  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Astral Consciousness! / Re: Laxman Light and Sound Machine on: October 04, 2012, 19:27:11
just an update my Procyon arrived about a week ago I opened it and found out that the console was missing. I had to contact the manufacture and they have told me to send it back for a replacement so may be a bit longer till I get to use it Sad
6  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Re: HemiSync is evil? on: September 29, 2012, 19:43:14
To be honest people should be more worried about being brainwashed by fox news than hemi sync lol:D
7  Psychic and Paranormal / Welcome to Psychic and Paranormal! / Aliens and light speed on: September 29, 2012, 16:06:59
So I was reading an article on the Hubble and the eXtreme Deep Field image. According to the article it takes 13.7 billion years for the light from the galaxy they decided to image to get here that is just 460 million years after when the big bang is thought to of occurred. So it got me wondering maybe the reason we haven't seen any life yet is because of the fact that we are basically looking at a historic universe when we take these images.

Put it this way if we were in the galaxy that Hubble was taking the picture of then the people operating Hubble would see earth 13.7 billion years ago.  That would mean there would be no life on the planet and the planet would probably of been hostile to life at the time.

So maybe the reason we have not found life apart from our planet is because we are constantly looking at a past universe.
8  Healing / Welcome to Healing discussions! / Re: Root Canals on: September 26, 2012, 22:19:20
I've had it done it is not that bad to me it's like a filling but longer. Anyways I'd rather have it done than lose a tooth.
9  Astral Chat / Welcome to Astral Chat! / Re: The Government on: September 26, 2012, 17:19:01
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If the issue is with drugs, I would say that has to do with the drug war and drug policies, not them wanting to keep you from AP'ing. Though drugs are not the way to go to learn AP anyways. You won't gain any skills, just have a crazy uncontrolled hallucinogenic experiences. It's not the same thing.
It is more to do with the drug war and the fact that it is a multibillion dollar business which employs hundreds of thousands directly and indirectly be jails or major police operations trying to stop the drug trade even if the results as of current are debatable.

As for why the government does not release stuff about ap why should they? Why should they even take the time to research it you don't want the government to be in your business in regards to ap yet you want them to publish papers on it? There is no cover up/suppression of ap material otherwise we wouldn't have this forum and the thousands of books on it. To be honest I am guessing than 99% of those working in government have other things to worry about and/or don't believe in ap.
10  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Astral Consciousness! / Re: Laxman Light and Sound Machine on: September 26, 2012, 14:36:30
I've finally also decided to get an AVS though not the laxman I'm getting the Procyon. I'll write a review in a few days when it comes  grin. Thanks lionheart for originally suggesting that it may help me a few months ago Smiley
11  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Re: Anyone astral project regularly yet believes it's all in the mind, or use to? on: September 26, 2012, 13:10:24
We take a lot of things for granted for instance how does one know whether everyone else around them are conscious beings instead of some super smart virtual ai? So with that in mind I'll bring up something Thomas Campbell says in his book which is not to take his word as truth but to explore the non physical reality yourself.
12  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Re: Hello i want to share my mother obe story on: September 26, 2012, 13:05:36
The closest I have ever got to getting an obe was when I was sick with the flu. So yeah I think being sick does help in a way.
13  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / Brain damaged 'Patient R' challenges theories of self awareness on: September 19, 2012, 20:01:17
I found this really interesting though it's not directly related to the astral. The fact that neuroscientists pretend to know what each brain part does...They don't.
Quote
According to some theories on how self-awareness arises in the brain, Patient R, a man who suffered a severe brain injury about 30 years ago, should not possess this aspect of consciousness.
In 1980, a bout of encephalitis caused by the common herpes simplex virus damaged his brain, leaving Patient R, now 57, with amnesia and unable to live on his own.
Even so, Patient R functions quite normally, said Justin Feinstein, a clinical neuropsychologist at the University of Iowa who has worked with him. "To a layperson, to meet him for the first time, you would have no idea anything is wrong with him," Feinstein said.
Feinstein and colleagues set out to test Patient R's level of self-awareness using a battery of tools that included a mirror, photos, tickling, a lemon, an onion, a personality assessment and an interview that asked profound questions like "What do you think happens after you die?" [The Science of Death: 10 Morbid Tales]
Their conclusion — that Patient R's self-awareness is largely intact in spite of his brain injury — indicates certain regions of the brain thought crucial for self-awareness are not.
Brain anatomy
Self-awareness is a complex concept, and neuroscientists are debating from where it arises in the brain. Some have argued that certain regions in the brain play critical roles in generating self-awareness.
The regions neuroscientists have advocated include the insular cortex, thought to play a fundamental role in all aspects of self-awareness; the anterior cingulate cortex, implicated in body and emotional awareness, as well as the ability to recognize one's own face and process one's conscious experience; and the medial prefrontal cortex, linked with processing information about oneself.
Patient R's illness destroyed nearly all of these regions of his brain. Using brain-imaging techniques, Feinstein and colleagues determined that the small patches of tissue remaining appeared defective and disconnected from the rest of the brain. [Inside the Brain: A Journey Through Time]
The tests
The team breaks self-awareness down into three components: an awareness of one's body and a sense of one's ability to act; autobiographical memories and a sense of one's own traits; and an ability to reflect on one's own actions, mental state and their consequences.
The first test they gave Patient R is the mirror test. The researchers sneaked a bit of black eye shadow onto R’s nose under the pretense of brushing something off his nose. When he was later shown his reflection in the mirror, the researchers watched to see if he responded to the mark on his nose.
He was also shown photos of himself throughout his life along with photos of family, familiar people and strangers and asked whether or not he could identify himself. In unaltered photos, he was 100 percent successful in identifying himself, but he had difficulty recognizing himself in photos altered to exclude everything except his own face.
"However, he never rated a picture of another person as himself," note the researchers.
R suffers from amnesia that affects memories of some experiences that occurred before his illness, and prevents him from forming new memories since, so these results suggest he was able to maintain a concept of himself even beyond his own amnesia, Feinstein said.
In another test, R's response to being tickled by himself versus by a researcher, was recorded. Tickling can be used to test self-awareness because tickling yourself doesn't feel the same as being tickled by someone else. "R was never observed laughing or displaying jerking movements during any of the self-administered tickling trials," they write.
Researchers assessed his awareness of the amount of control he exerted over a box moving around a computer screen, and had him and family members assess his personality.
An exception
R's brain injury took away his sense of smell and taste, as well as much of his memory. R partially acknowledges his memory loss, even describing himself as a "normal person with a bad memory," However, he does not admit that he cannot smell or taste.
The researchers put this to the test by blindfolding him and then offering him an onion or lemon or odorless items and asking what he smelled. With the blindfold on, he could not smell the lemon or onion. With it off, he claimed to smell them, explaining, "I guess sight makes things easier."`
Knowing one's limitations is an aspect of self-awareness, Feinstein said.
Patient R & the origin of self-awareness
Finally, in an interview the researchers assessed his capacity for introspection, asking him questions about free will, the self, emotion and other abstract concepts.
"I think what the interview reveals is clearly somebody who is not impaired in most aspects of self-awareness," Feinstein said. "If you were asking someone who was a zombie, you wouldn't get any of these sorts of answers."
The results of the assessment are clear, he and colleagues contend: Neither the insula cortex, the anterior cingulate cortex nor the medial prefrontal cortex play crucial roles in self-awareness.
Patient R's self-awareness does, however, support the theory that sets of neurons in the brain stem may provide the foundation for consciousness and the sense of self. This part of R's brain is undamaged. The team also suggests other parts of the brain,the thalamus and the posteromedial cortex, play a role in self-awareness.
"The brain more than likely doesn't have a single region that is devoted to self awareness, but rather, the complex phenomenon likely emerges from much more distributed interactions between multiple brain regions," Feinstein said. "I think it is important to emphasize that the study of self-awareness in the brain is really in its early stages."
The research was published Thursday in the journal PLoS ONE.
http://www.foxnews.com/health/2012/08/23/brain-damaged-patient-r-challenges-theories-self-awareness/?utm_campaign=Feed:%20foxnews/health%20(Internal%20-%20Health%20-%20Text)&utm_medium=feed&utm_source=feedburner&intcmp=obinsite#ixzz26rSy9Hnt
14  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Re: No success in 6 years on: September 12, 2012, 20:06:25
Favola you like many others just want results which is the main downfall if you are just seeking to get an 'obe' you are not gonna get far. I haven't had an obe yet (been trying for 4 years) but I have probably got closer than you. Not having an OBE yet does not bother me I know if I keep working on it I will eventually have one Monroe had his first OBE in his 40's!

Instead I am grateful for what my effort has achieved in that I am less anxious (suffer from general anxiety, social anxiety and depression), I eat a healthy diet and I exercise more. All this is due to me wanting an obe therefore trying to get in a good mental and physical state to have one. Therefore trying to have an OBE has been the best decision of my life it doesn't matter that I haven't had one yet.

Most people who complain most likely lie in bed at night trying different techniques each night and giving up 20 minutes into it.
15  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Re: Transhumanism and the future of astral projection in society. on: September 08, 2012, 18:09:18
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Why do we think that we will have this technology by 2050? Because Ray Kurzweil says so? Do you realise that back in 1960 they were predicting we would have this technology by 1990?  It never appeared. It doesn't matter how fast our technology is expanding. If we start with zero knowledge about the "hard problem" it doesn't matter how quickly we expand that knowledge. It is still zero knowledge.

Kurzweil has quite an accurate track record though but it's based on his theory of exponential growth which I don't think will continue. Neither does his predictions take into account social and ethical concerns which would slow down progress. I wouldn't write him off but his predictions are quite optimistic. We'll see Smiley
16  World Cultures, Traditions and Religions / Welcome to World Cultures, Traditions and Religions! / Re: I don't know if I believe in god on: September 05, 2012, 23:19:00


The question of how the universe began, was it creation or an accident, how did everything we see before us turn out to be? Why does it exist?

If the universe came to be, because of a God then how did God come to be? Some people believe there was never a beginning and that "stuff" has always existed.

The universe could have always existed, or God could have always existed. Both of these questions I see are pretty related to one another from the standpoint of believers who consider "God" and the Universe to be identical i.e Pantheism, and this metaphorical bible verse backs it up.

Revelation 22:13 "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last."

So whether God really is a creator being or not, the "source" clearly is the beginning and the end of all things which can be an answer to both questions I suppose..
Yup that was my point either way something had to exist (I'm agnostic so I'm personally not sure if their is a god or not). Our reality either way wouldn't be an accident because even with the idea that the universe has always been there it was bound to happen. If the universe has always been infinite then every possibility will happen at some stage. Put it this way if you threw a dice of say 1 zillion numbers on it every number will come up at least once if you throw the dice infinitely.
17  World Cultures, Traditions and Religions / Welcome to World Cultures, Traditions and Religions! / Re: I don't know if I believe in god on: September 05, 2012, 22:19:19
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Where did the universe (multiverse) come from? Why is it here? Looking at Creation, it's difficult (for me) to think it's just some sort of massive accident. Maybe it is,  but it seems too incredible to think it is just here, because of some sort of spontaneous creation event. Science certainly hasn't solved the mystery of Creation, there are many different theories, including half a dozen which postulate a universe which has no beginning and no end ie it has always been here. Hmmm. Big bang type theories generally require a singularity to exist, before the big bang. Where did this come from?
Where did god come from then?
18  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Re: Does science aknowledge the etheral/astral realm? on: August 27, 2012, 17:23:24
If your talking about mainstream western science no. Mainstream Western Science can not acknowledge the Astral because the experiences are subjective. In order for something to be considered fact in Western Science it must be objective and repeatable by other people at any time.

That is where the issue lies the majority of people can't just have an obe whenever they want, the content is different for different people, There is no physical characteristics to examine. That doesn't mean the astral realm is not real it just means that science can not prove it with the tools at it's disposal and therefore does not acknowledge it.
19  Astral Chat / Welcome to Members Introductions! / Re: Hello from the United Kingdom, got some stuff to say... on: August 25, 2012, 13:21:22
I'm from the UK also! We have a nice Brit contingent on this forum Cheesy
20  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / Re: The Immortality Project: $5 million to explore the afterlife on: August 25, 2012, 13:07:27
I don't mind those skeptics in the world but I think they should realise that it works both ways they can't expect everyone just to listen to them. They should be able to objectively listen to other people's opinions without turning it into something where they just try to aggressively humiliate people with differing opinions.

In saying that I'm a skeptic just I am someone who does not exactly know what I think yet (22 so still young:D) hence why I am here trying to see if anything here resonates with my experiences.
21  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / Re: The Immortality Project: $5 million to explore the afterlife on: August 24, 2012, 21:45:38
Well I think that most of the current skeptic explanations kind of lack any proof of any kind at the end of the day we know very little about human consciousness and the brain. The thing that really disproves most skeptical views to me is the fact that people who have been blind from birth have nde's and are able to describe instruments etc around them in hospitals. Surely they wouldn't be able to even see something (produced by the brain) if they do not have a developed visual cortex.


22  Astral Chat / Welcome to News and Media! / The Immortality Project: $5 million to explore the afterlife on: August 24, 2012, 19:45:21
Could be promising and be a good kick start to help study obe's and nde's. I did find the bit about western nde's being different from eastern nde's. I always thought that they were very similar.

Source:http://www.globaltvedmonton.com/feature/6442698560/story.html
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TORONTO – What happens in your brain during an out-of-body experience? Would an afterlife be boring or would it be worthwhile to live forever? If you’ve ever pondered these questions, a California study dubbed The Immortality Project is looking for the same answers that you are, and more.

A US $5-million grant from the John Templeton Foundation has been awarded to University of California at Riverside philosopher John Martin Fischer to fund research on aspects of immortality.

Fischer is organizing competitions, selecting judges and consulting with potential (and actual) recipients of research grants, though won’t be conducting the research himself. Funding for grants will be distributed as follows: $2.5 million for scientific studies and $1.5 million for theology and philosophy projects.

Participants will consist of carefully selected top scientists, philosophers, and theologians from around the world, though proposals must be submitted in English.

The Immortality Project is officially underway, and advertising for the first competition for science research proposals will begin Sept. 1.

So what kind of ideas is Fischer expecting?

On the phone from Germany, he explained that one possibility is taking past reports of near-death experiences and comparing them across countries like the Canada, the U.S., Japan, India and Africa.

Fischer says in the West, people often report seeing a dark tunnel with a bright light at the end when describing near-death experiences, while people in Japan describe tending a garden.

He points to the fact that in most western cultures we have the saying ‘there’s a light at the end of the tunnel’ while in Japan there’s a story of how to keep in touch with loved ones as you age by buying a garden and tending it together.

“It’s pure speculation, but maybe somehow, psychologically, when there’s a tremendous threat to us and it feels like we’re about to die, we can somehow reach for that comfort zone or that idea that there’s light at the end of the tunnel.” Or a garden with friends, if you’re Japanese.

He says another possibility would be simulating so-called out-of-body experiences to test whether people can really ‘see themselves’ from different viewpoints, as is often reported.

In the realm of neuroscience, studies could test if there are features of the brain that predispose people to believe in an afterlife, or if there are scans that can reveal brain phenomena when people are having out-of-body experiences. All experiments using people would have to be approved by ethics committees.

An additional area of study is cataloguing people’s beliefs about the afterlife and finding links to their behaviour e.g. finding out if people who believe in hell are less likely to commit crimes, as some empirical studies have suggested.

In the philosophy and theology realms, the project would support sabbaticals for winners to write articles and books on topics such as whether the conceptions of heaven, hell and purgatory are philosophically defensible, or whether or not it would even be desirable to live forever.

Fischer believes the project came together now because of increasing interest among scientists in the possibility of increasing the human lifespan, but notes that we’ve always been interested in the possibility of defeating death, as evidenced by stories that began with Adam and Eve.

“Even to the present where we have this fascination with vampire literature – the vampires seek a kind of immortality by taking other people’s blood,” he says. “Throughout religion, science—the history of both Western and Eastern science—and literature, we’ve been seeking this kind of fountain of youth.”

Fischer admits that he would be surprised to find definitive answers on the various aspects of immortality, but aims to make progress on what we do know about death. He emphasizes that the primary focus isn’t just near-death experiences, and hopes that by thinking about immortality, we can learn what we value in our finite lives.

While he says he’s “not a religious believer,” he remains open-minded about the possibility of an afterlife.

“My father, who passed away recently, was a cardiologist and my brother is a cardiologist and they both treat patients who are very sick and sometimes die,” he says. “Maybe when I was young I was thinking about these issues, because I saw that my father would really try and help people, and sometimes he couldn’t, and so maybe that got me started.”
 
23  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Re: Getting Closer! on: August 23, 2012, 22:51:24
Thats easier said than done, I've never been scared of anything I've experienced but I always get so excited. I love the feeling of vibrations it's just so exhilarating! I think once I learn how not to get excited I'll get further lol:D
24  Astral Projection & Out of Body Experiences / Welcome to Out of Body Experiences! / Getting Closer! on: August 22, 2012, 20:27:16
So I had my first real (sort of) experience last night. I couldn't sleep last night I had too much on my mind so I decided to meditate instead of tossing and turning. I didn't really have any intention of having an OBE I was just trying to clear my mind and relax. After a while lying in bed I felt like my arms were out of my body I felt like I could wave my astral hands it felt so real. I then started feeling electric like shocks throughout my body and I felt a sort of pressure round my nose. Sadly I got too excited meaning that whatever I was getting close to achieving went.
 
Still it's a big improvement for me I don't think I've had an experience like that in all the years I have tried. I think I got further this time because I had no expectations of wanting to achieve an obe I was purely meditating to calm my mind and pass the time since I could not sleep.

 
25  Astral Chat / Welcome to Astral Chat! / Re: Meditating in a computer chair on: August 17, 2012, 13:14:25
You can meditate everywhere because of my anxieties I meditate a lot I do it while I am walking, I do it on my morning and afternoon train, I do it when I am trying to sleep and yes I do it while I am sitting on my computer chair. You can do it everywhere it just takes time and patience when you first start. If I am doing it on my computer chair I normally dim/switch off the screen just to make sure it doesn't distract me.
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