- Bob Ginsberg
So You Are Dead: Now What?
There are two possibilities of what happens after we die. The first scenario is nothingness. Nada. Extinguished forever. In this case there is no next, and we don’t have any idea that we are dead. Actually, we have no ideas at all. In the other scenario we die, then wake up, and have a holy shit moment when we realize that yes, we are physically dead but still exist.
The concept of surviving death is mind blowing. Imagine believing that death was the end and finding out that you were wrong. Talk about a surprise! It’s the mother-load of astonishment, something that could not happen but yet it did. Of course you might argue that religious people should not be surprised, as this is what their religion preaches to them. However, I would imagine that such people have some hope that there is life after death, but the evidence is sorely lacking, and they would be equally surprised. Logic and reason often takes precedence over blind faith.
I suspect that most of us have no real conviction that there is an afterlife, and that is why we do everything in our power to appear and feel younger in attempts to stave off the inevitable. We have plastic surgery to see a younger face in the mirror. Some inject themselves with Botox and have the fat sucked out of their bellies. Some resort to drugs in attempts to make themselves feel younger. Others exercise like fiends or go on extreme diets in desperate attempts to retard the aging process. The fear of death can be paralyzing, so simply ignoring it may be the best course of action. Perhaps the worst part of all this denial is not how we seek to change the physical stuff, but how we conduct our lives. Many resort to lying, deceit and bigotry as they trample on others. And why not? Time is short and there are no repercussions. But what if there are?
I think about the possibility of life after death a lot. Specifically, how I would react if I found myself birthed into another realm of existence after I died. I wonder if I would panic, take it in stride, or rejoice in my new surroundings. I would certainly wonder how I could exist without my physical body. After all, I lived my entire life housed in a shell that defined my essence. And yet, here I was, very much alive with my memories and personality intact. My mind survived my physical death, and now I existed as an entity of thought. Now, with thoughts as my currency, I would communicate telepathically. After all, everyone else in this new realm would be pure consciousness as well. Perhaps I would be able to manifest items that I once had in the physical realm. Maybe I could travel wherever I wanted to go by simply thinking of my destination and willing it so. Star-Trek on steroids.
There is one thing of which I am sure. After coming to the realization that my mind was intact I would seek out a way to get a message to the loved ones I left behind, which most likely would require some ingenuity and would be a challenge. I would need to send a telepathic thought transmission and hope that it was received by my intended target. However, even if my loved one heard a voice in their head, or saw me while they were dreaming, they would most likely question themselves and the experience. Perhaps a legitimate medium could act as an intermediary, or maybe I would need a medium where I was to assist on my end.
Existing after physical death is not as far- fetched as many imagine. We get hung up on the notion that we are our brains. Therefore, when our brain is no more, we cease to exist. However, research is showing that the mind (consciousness) is not the same thing as the brain and can act independently. Before scoffing at such a statement, consider telepathy (mind to mind communication). Most of us can relate an experience where we were thinking of someone with whom we have not had any communication for years, and suddenly the phone rings and it is that person. Or thoughts pop into your head from an unknown source and you later find this to be valuable information. Some have dreams where they see something happen and later awaken to find out that the event plays out just as it did in the dream. How does that happen? How can we receive the thoughts of others if we are independent unconnected entities whose consciousness is securely contained in our skulls?
Science has produced evidence of telepathy in thousands of studies and millions of trials. Experiments are not difficult to design. American parapsychologist J.B. Rhine, one of the pioneers in this area of research, in the 1930s designed a card guessing exercise using Zener cards. Each card featured one of five shapes, a star, circle, cross, rectangle and set of wavy lines. Participants were physically screened from the experimenter and asked to guess what card was coming up next as the cards were randomly shuffled and turned over, or placed in sealed envelopes. The odds of someone making the correct guess for each card would be one in five, or 20%. However, many people had the consistent ability to guess the correct cards well beyond chance.
This spawned decades of research involving telepathic phenomena, and the protocols progressed to include the use of random number generators. The collective data, which includes hundreds of thousands of trials, shows that telepathic powers cannot be attributed to chance. We also have evidence of the mind extending beyond the brain in such phenomena as remote viewing, where some people can have their mind travel to distant targets and report back what they saw. Our own CIA used such people to spy on the Russians during the Cold War. Material science has yet to explain how one’s mind can travel outside the body.
Distant healing is an example of psychokinesis, the mind affecting physical matter. Studies show that some people can use their thoughts to affect the growth of bacteria and plants, change the molecular structure of water, and promote healing of illnesses in humans. In other words, it appears that one’s thoughts, for lack of a better term, travel to and can affect other locations and organisms.
Near death experiencers, people who are clinically dead and show no brain activity, once resuscitated describe clear and lucid thinking while leaving their bodies and visiting locations outside of their bodies. In fact, there are cases where people who have been sightless from birth return to accurately describe the happenings in the operating in the room that occurred while they were dead. Such descriptions include such things as the colors of clothing people wore, the design of the equipment they saw, and who came in and exited the operating arena.
So here’s why these things are important. If our minds are not produced by and dependent on our physical brains, then life after physical death becomes plausible. The brain is truly no more after death, but our consciousness, along with our memories and personalities, simply changes location. Medical doctors and researchers have amassed an abundance of evidence in this regard from the study of the near death experiences, mediumship, deathbed visions, reincarnation and after death communications.
The next time that you fret about your own mortality, lighten up a bit. Chances are that death is not the end, but the belief that death is final is reinforced by our cultural, societal, educational, religious and mainstream science influences. I guess we will all find out soon enough.