Evolving news on the science, writing and thinking about Near Death Experiences (NDEs)

“This time next year Rodney”

We come to that time of the year again when we look back at the past year and rue the lack of new data, and look forward hoping that this year will be different. We are like the characters in the 1980s UK hit TV show, Only Fools and Horses featuring Del Boy and Rodney Trotter, who lived in a state apartment in a poor part of London and were always coming up with schemes to make themselves rich, but never succeeding. “This time next year Rodney,” Del boy would say to his younger brother, “we’ll be millionaires.” It was either this analogy I was going to use, or Groundhog Day…both fit the feeling I have about the AWARE II study despite the promising Tweet made just after New Years which stated:

“We hope to see you in 2022 as we ring in the New Year with exciting news, including updates on the AWARE II study!

This has been followed more recently by some Tweets on the study that looks into paradoxical terminal lucidity in patients with Dementia. I currently work in Dementia as a medical scientist for a Biotech with “skin in the game” so to speak. Also, I watched my father die from Dementia, so I am very interested in this study. I have spoken about this in previous posts, so won’t say any more for now.

On the promise of “updates on the AWARE II study” I am now very cautious about raising my hopes too much having experienced so much disappointment over the years. My expectations range from a statement saying they have more hospitals recruiting patients, to a paper, or conference abstract that provides more details on the different auditory experiences they reported at AHA 2019. The latter has the potential to be extremely important, although I doubt the media or wider scientific community will regard it in such a light. It is clear that Parnia does not believe that CPRIC (CPR induced consciousness) or blood flow from CPR could produce NDEs. I was not certain of this until I read the essay that he submitted to the Bigelow competition (more on that in a moment). It is possible that the update from the AWARE II study includes data from EEG and ECG matched against one or more of the reported auditory OBEs. This could be the smoking gun. Like I said, the scientific community may not accept it as such without a lot of persuasion.

The Tweet trailing “exciting news” was not just confined to the AWARE II study though. It is possible that data may be presented from AWARE III, the study looking into OBEs reported during hypothermic surgery. They recruited their first patient in August 2020, and it is possible that they have been recruiting a number each month, and if that were the case, I would fully expect to have a hit by now.

Who knows, but watch this space, or sign up directly to their Twitter feed.

On another note, I was able to read Sam Parnia’s essay over the Christmas holidays. It was a robust defense of the argument supporting NDEs and as well as going over a lot of old ground, I feel he made a lot more of the hit from AWARE I than he previously has, specifically stating that this is the only time in a clinical study that recollections from an NDE have been corroborated by attending HCPs AND that these recollections were time stamped to prove that they were from a time that the patient had no heartbeat. In some ways this made me feel a little concerned that this would be his “forever hit”, and that from his standpoint no more evidence is needed. From a proof standpoint, I somewhat agree, but then I would, it’s the wider scientific community that demands more.

He also provided a very good argument, supported by data, that CPR could not produce the lucid kind of experiences described in NDEs as CPR does not produce sufficient blood flow, and the EEG patterns associated with CPR do not correspond to consciousness. As others have noted in previous discussions, this puts to bed any doubts around CPR causing the auditory OBEs in AWARE II despite this going against the line that he put in his AHA abstract, so I look forward to any publication that goes into this further. He also discussed CPRIC which is a completely different phenomenon, and is when the patient achieves consciousness during CPR, normally as a result of brief restoration of heart beat. This kind of event is always associated with confusion and distress, and completely different from the kind of recollections that feature in an NDE.

Anyway, I will once again draw deep on my reserves of hope that we will learn of that illusive hit before too long. To me it is inevitable, and judging by the Tweets, the Parnia team also believe it is inevitable, otherwise why would they be so assertive in claiming that CA survivors can recall details from the time they were beyond the threshold of death?

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72 thoughts on ““This time next year Rodney”

  1. “This time next year Rodney”

    I suppose it has been a bit like that, Ben, down the years. And Covid well and truly stalled their efforts as well, I’m sure.

    When trying to correctly interpret the meaning of any of the snippets of information offered to us, no one wants to be later shown to be foolish or a ‘plonker’, as ‘Del Boy’ used to refer to Rodney…you’ve got it all wrong, you plonker, Rodney!

    The tweeted information is tantalising:

    “Around 10-15% of cardiac arrest survivors are able to recall experiences during the time they were biologically beyond the threshold of death. Some have described reviewing their actions and intentions toward others throughout their lives, while others have recalled details of their resuscitation.”

    This is a study on real patients in hospitals, who have objectively died (cardiac arrest) for more then 5 minutes (it surely takes 5 minutes to get to them in the room and set up the equipment and if they have returned the patient to consciousness by then, they are not recruited).

    If they do have data in which patients can recall details (whatever they may be) from their resuscitation (and I don’t say that they do, they say…or ‘someone’ has said they do anyway) in effect during a period when their brains could not have been functioning, then that has to be very significant, not withstanding someone actually seeing the laptop target.

    If it is the case (as above) then it is remarkable. But as Ben says, will it impress the as yet ‘immovable’ scientific materialists? Or will they still argue that ‘only fools and horses’ would believe it? It’s anyone’s guess…

    “No income tax, no VAT, no money back, no guarantee….”


    • Plonker is definitely one of my favourite insults of all time!

      I’m not convinced that the 10-15% refers to the AWARE II study, although it might, but yes if they had significant numbers able to recall details, that would be amazing. I think they may have been referring to the wider field, but they also have their other study that looks at characteristics of NDEs. Come to think of though, in the initial abstract, I think 4 of the 19 could recall events from during the time they were “dead”. Who knows, but the suggestion is that it should be fairly soon before we learn more.


      • @Ben

        Ben said >”I’m not convinced that the 10-15% refers to the AWARE II study, although it might”

        I’m not convinced, either, tbh. But the December tweet did say (specifically ?) that it would be information from Aware 2 they were releasing.

        The tweet >”We hope to see you in 2022 as we ring in the New Year with exciting news, including updates on the AWARE II study! ”

        Why would they say information from Aware 2 and then give us information from Aware 1 and the general field previously? And if it was from the 2019 poster, then that wouldn’t be an update, would it?

        On a lighter note, Only fools and horses was great fun, I love the word ‘plonker’ myself. Lets hope we’re not being ‘plonkers’ and the “gear” we’re being shown is genuine.


      • We can but speculate.

        I also like “muppet” and “numpty”. The English have created a great lexicon of insults for their fellow men and women.


      • @Ben

        Ben said >” I also like “muppet” and “numpty”. The English have created a great lexicon of insults for their fellow men and women.”

        Long may it continue because without insults (being allowed), the world will become a far worse place. Not only will people be angry, they’ll be unable to express their anger and forced to be nice when they don’t want to be. That’s what some idiots are effectively trying to impose on us now.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Have to agree there Tim. Although to be controversial I have to say blackadder beats only fools ad horses

        And in addition I am liking how realivity active the parnia lab is on social media. A good step


      • Close call…Blackadder was amazing, and wins for razor sharp wit, but for me the relationships in only Fools and Horses and the characters became part of the British National psyche just that bit more.Definitely a close call though, and both from an era when we had great comedy…I transitioned to US comedies after the 80s they are still my staple.

        Also Z, yes, it would appear that Parnia has handed the social media side of things over to someone who has heard of things like instagram, and who realises you need to post more than once a year! Next they will do a tiktok video while performing CPR!


  2. @Z

    Thanks, Z ! I like the Blackadder series, too ! Good robust humour, which is fast being censored or even banned altogether.

    On a more relevant note, Z, Ben, or anyone else (I don’t have a twitter account) I would like to know if this tweet from the Parnia group…

    “Around 10-15% of cardiac arrest survivors are able to recall experiences during the time they were biologically beyond the threshold of death. Some have described reviewing their actions and intentions toward others throughout their lives, while others have recalled details of their resuscitation.”

    …is referring to data from Aware 2 ? I think it probably is but I’m not certain now. If anyone could get confirmation, it would be very helpful to us all.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It could be, but equally it could be just what is generally stated about ndes nor related to the aware studies. Either could fit the statement I think.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Another Blackadder fan here.

      Liked by 1 person

    • The fact they say 10-15% rather than 12.4% or something specific like that, suggest it is just a generalised comment.


      • @Ben and Z

        Ben said >” The fact they say 10-15% rather than 12.4% or something specific like that, suggest it is just a generalised comment.”

        Okay but generalised from what source ? The Christmas tweet specifically stated that they had news from Aware 2. The 2019 poster was from Aware 2 and that included similar information (external awareness etc) so it hardly seems likely that they would ‘throw in’ some general statement just from the field at large. That doesn’t make sense.

        And yet what they have tweeted is in effect tantamount to the impossible, nothing less than scientific heresy. You can’t have (according to our science) lucid thought processes with cognition and memory formation without a brain, period.

        They may as well have tweeted that we have a found a new ‘substance’ that we can’t account for and a new ‘existence’ that we are/were not aware of. That of course sounds dramatic and ‘over the top’, but I can assure you (based on over 40 years of observing these scientists and their ‘modus operandi’) if that tweet is based on factual data that they have, then that is the case. What else could it be.

        But is it ?


  3. what means of phase III of a study? Thank you.


    • Hi Peter, not sure where the term “phase III” study was used in the post, but I did say AWARE III…which is what I am calling the third study in the AWARE series that looks at what happens to consciousness during hypothermic surgery.

      To answer your question, seeing as I work in Biotech and am very familiar with the different phases of studies, phase III studies are specific to investigating drug or other medical interventions and are usually conducted by industry as they are hideously expensive (hundreds of millions to do a proper phase III). These studies are usually conducted after the efficacy, dosing and safety of a drug has been established in the target population on a smaller scale of about 100 patients in a phase II study (phase I are usually healthy volunteer safety and dosing studies). Phase III are then usually conducted on a much larger scale and “powered” to hit statistical significance in whatever effect the drug is purported to achieve. Usually you have 2 phase III studies of identical design, one US and one international. This is a pre requisite for regulatory approval for many drugs, although in orphan diseases and some cancers, the rules are a bit more relaxed.


    • @Peter

      Ben knows his stuff so I’m not contradicting him or speaking for anyone else, but I suspect the hypothermic standstill and terminal lucidity studies are separate or parallel to the Aware study.

      Aware 3 (when that begins) surely will continue to follow cardiac arrest patients in the hospital setting (not the operating room or the hospice). Might be wrong, but anything else would be somewhat confusing.


      • Indeed Tim, using AWARE just for the studies that look at REsuscitation makes complete sense, so you are right…I was just being lazy. Yes, there will be two studies, lets come up with some names. The rules of naming studies is that you can call them anything provided that the letters of the name appear in the long title. So here is my stab at the hypothermic study:

        UNFROZEN – UNusual but Frequent Reports Of biZzarre Experiences while Not dead,but really really cold.

        Your turn for the terminal lucidity study name…


      • @Ben

        The Unfrozen study, lol !! Maybe they could get sponsorship from ‘Birds Eye’…well, maybe not, their stuff is actually frozen solid.

        Just an interesting point about the Cool Study or the Unfrozen study, as difficult as it is for some people to accept, the patients that are treated with hypothermic cardiac standstill, are in effect dead.

        They are indistinguishable from someone who is dead. Surgeons can make you dead and then bring you back.

        I “spoke” to someone who had an out of body experience during such an operation. There is zero blood flow into the brain/zero brain activity and the patients head is actually packed in ice to help preserve the cells.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Hi Tim, yes you are right about being technically dead…I make that point in my book. No heartbeat, no brain activity, but because their body is cooled the process of cell death are unable to get going to a sufficient degrees to cause lasting damage within the timeframe of the procedure.


  4. Hello, some time ago I came to an idea about interaction between a soul and our familiar physical world that would have an unfortunate consequence for Parnia’s AWARE study: even if NDEs are veridical, it would be impossible for the NDE experiencer to see the signs that Parnia installed under the ceiling where no one can see them.

    I came to this idea when thinking about the following dilemma: How can the soul interact with the physical world, including the physical body, without being detected by scientists? In other words, if the soul interacted with the body via a very weak force, it might elude the observation of scientists but its influence on the body would seem insignificant; if on the other hand the soul interacted with the body via a significantly strong force, this force should be detectable by scientists.

    By the “soul” I mean a hypothetical conscious entity that can incarnate in a physical body and survive the physical body’s death. I would expect such an entity to be made of some “stuff” that is different from the familiar physical stuff since it has eluded detection by scientists so far.

    How to resolve this dilemma? Well, there seems to be the possibility that the soul would interact significantly with the brain but it would elude detection because scientists would be unable to tell whether changes in brain activity that are measurable with contemporary brain scanning technology (fMRI, EEG) are or are not entirely caused by known particles or fields inside or outside the brain.

    Still, if the soul was constituted by unknown particles or fields, why would such particles or fields not be detected even in particle accelerators where they can be measured much more accurately than with brain scanning devices? For some reason, the soul would interact strongly with known particles in the brain (where it would be undetectable because of the complex brain processes and the limited resolution of our brain scanners) but it would interact only weakly with known particles in accelerators (where it would be undetectable because of the weakness of the interaction).

    I don’t know if this idea is viable but maybe the unknown particles that would constitute the soul normally interact only weakly with known particles (which makes them undetectable in accelerators) but their interaction with known particles in the brain is significantly amplified by resonance that can only occur between certain complex systems such as a soul and a brain (neural networks).

    That would mean that the soul can significantly interact with our familiar physical world, and thus perceive our familiar physical world, only indirectly, by resonating with a (functioning) brain which receives perceptual inputs from physical senses. But if the experiencer’s brain is incapacitated during the NDE, how can the experiencer’s soul perceive what is going on in the operating room? Well, maybe by establishing some resonance with other brains, such as those of medical staff and thus putting together a picture of what is going on. But if this is correct, the soul cannot see what the medical staff (or other people with functioning brains) don’t see. Parnia would never get a report from the patients about the signs installed under the ceiling where no one can see them. Instead, he might experiment with signs that can be perceived by the medical staff but not by the patient, for example a picture that would appear on a screen on the wall during the resuscitation efforts, and then ask the patient if he remembers seeing any picture on a screen on the wall.

    Do you know of any indications from reported NDEs that might rule out the hypothesis that the soul can perceive the familiar physical world only via a (functioning) brain?

    Liked by 1 person

    • @Tomas

      That’s a very thoughtful post. The question as to why scientists have not discovered
      a soul particle, however, doesn’t mean that “souls” can’t exist, as Sean Carroll and most other physicists would suggest. If I was being frivolous, I would make a joke of it and say the soul is made of fairy dust. But it’s not very funny.

      But even being serious, science has no idea what the soul, the self, the mind, consciousness in effect, is made of. We know it’s there (it exists) we don’t have it, we ARE it (consciousness) and without it, we wouldn’t be anything.

      When you examine a brain and it’s various tracts, even under a microscope you don’t see consciousness; you see cells, nerve cells and structural cells which all behave like any other cells in the body producing proteins etc.

      Brain surgeons cut through the jelly (protoplasm) that makes up the brain (when they have to) but even when they take away quite large areas, they don’t take away the consciousness of that person, unless they kill or maim them and in the latter case consciousness is still there, as is being seen with experiments on those that are sadly in a vegetative state or were thought to be (but that’s another matter).

      If, as in cardiac arrest patients, the brain is not functioning, or as some sceptics prefer–almost– completely dysfunctional, consciousness with lucid well structured thought processes and memory formation should not be possible, but there is now sufficient evidence (sceptics still deny it of course) to say that it is (possible) nevertheless.

      Your last paragraph could have been composed by our friend Max, who sometimes posts on here with his very novel ideas about field theory etc. They are a non starter for me personally, but that’s just my opinion, for what it’s worth (not much in the scheme of things)

      So, back to the point about what the mind/soul/self is made of. I don’t think it’s ever going to be an answerable scientific question. We ARE consciousness stuff, whatever it’s made of (you can’t get behind it– Max Planck).

      Maybe it’s fundamental in the universe or maybe it’s a ‘substance’ that originates from a dimension(s) that we haven’t (yet?) discovered but only philosophised about.


      • A materialist could say that consciousness is a property of the brain (or of some parts or processes in the brain). You can’t see consciousness when you look at the brain but that may be because looking at a brain doesn’t give you information about all properties of the brain. For example, it doesn’t give you information about what the brain tastes like. Consciousness may be one of those “hidden” properties. But if consciousness can continue after the brain stops working or disintegrates, there must also be something else that has the property of consciousness (which doesn’t rule out the possibility that consciousness may be a property of the brain itself too). We don’t know what this “something else” is but obviously it is something rather than nothing and it seems to interact with the brain to control the body and to receive perceptual inputs from bodily senses. Which raises the question of why this conscious “something” has not been detected by scientists yet.


      • @Tomas

        “why this conscious “something” has not been detected by scientists yet”

        Here’s a take on this (not my idea but agree with and have thought a bit about). You mention about detecting. To detect something in physics you need an interaction of the object with the probe, say a proton beam hitting an atom gives a deflection, inferring the existence of the atom. Your point reminded me of David Bohm’s physics comment (a consensus) about all matter (say the proton beam and the atom in our “detection test”) being only a tiny ripple on a huge energy of quite unknown complexity that really exists in space. Like a ripple on an ocean. I mean, it’s there! This physics point means how can you detect the energy on which the proton beam and the atom utterly depend. Just like two waves on the surface of the ocean hitting each other how to detect the ocean underneath which ultimately give rise to the waves.
        We see all matter as objects in space but it’s the other way round, space is the source of all matter, space is us, in us, the root of everything. It’s not contentious, Frank Wilczek (physics Nobel 2004) has also spoken of this – everything’s dependence on space.

        But if consciousness, mind or whatever we call it is also rooted in this energy then this energy must be intelligent and may be undetectable using proton beams or any other particle beam. So scientists cannot detect “this conscious “something”” (just using your words). Bohm believed this intelligent energy was the source of insight – so a truly insightful idea kind of comes out of this “other”.

        There’s a fantastic expression of this here written by him …

        And, by gosh, he brings the whole thing alive not just as some abstract physics ideas (ideas which are right of course but in a physics sense). Part quote from the link … “This suggests an invisible but pervasive energy, to which the manifest world of the finite responds. This energy, or spirit, infuses all living beings, and without it any organism must fall apart into its constituent elements. That which is truly alive in the living being is this energy or spirit, and this is never born and never dies.”

        Being bold about all this, then the detection of this “intelligent energy” can be done using our awareness to which it must be tied. I can only square this with the brain somehow “limiting” our awareness and when the brain goes there’s a kind of “subtle” body with awareness that’s left, but much greater awareness (borne out in incredibly clear and sometimes paranormal NDE accounts). Maybe we can detect this energy in dreams as well. And maybe physicists will one day catch up and detect this. I know there are physicists who strongly believe in Bohm’s points. But many physicists are religious as well, so surely must believe in this in principle but in a kind of parallel way. I guess.
        Sorry, long to read.


      • @Alan

        “Being bold about all this, then the detection of this “intelligent energy” can be done using our awareness to which it must be tied.”

        And our awareness is apparently tied to our physical body because it can influence the body and be influenced by sensory inputs from the body. So the intelligent or conscious energy seems to interact with the body and the question arises why the intelligent energy interacts with the atoms of our physical body but not with the atoms of the physicists’ measuring instruments.

        According to modern physics all matter is quantum fields and particles are local energy excitations of these fields. So for example there is an electron field or a photon field and the excitations of these fields are particles known as electrons or photons. These particles and fields interact with each other, so if the soul was a field or something like an ocean as you seemed to suggest, it shouldn’t be surprising that it can interact with known particles or fields.


      • Great discussion Tomas. In my book I very briefly allude to the attempts of theoretical physicists to understand consciousness in quantum mechanical terms. The truth though is that while I did some quantum mechanics as part of my undergraduate studies in chemistry, I do not have sufficient understanding to make a meaningful comment on the topic. My “gut feeling” is that the conscious is external to the physical system in which perceive ourselves to live in, and our bodies, and specifically our brains, are the physical constructs in this system through which our consciousness is able to experience and interact with this system. However, as I also express in my book, the reality of this so-called physical system is an illusion created by the tricks that sub atomic particles play. The real reality is the place that our consciousness comes from. This idea is echoed by so many NDEers who claim that their experiences felt more real than “real life”.

        It is really is a fascinating but mind-bending topic, and one that if you think about it too long might you drive you to go live in a cave!


      • “if the soul was a field or something like an ocean as you seemed to suggest, it shouldn’t be surprising that it can interact with known particles or fields.”

        There are the experiments by Dean Radin and colleagues on a quantum double-slit set-up where consciousness effects the system. Also micro and macro-PK effects? Such as consciousness effects (micro) on random number generators by the Princeton lab. Clear indications mind can effect the so-called physical world.

        I see it like this. If the mind can effect over a distance (considerable distances for some experiments) as these experiments imply then whatever is “in between” must have mind-like qualities otherwise you’d get no effects, kind of reaffirming Bohm’s view that space has some mind-like nature.
        If you know of the Daryl Bem experiments, they indicate a retrocausal effect as well which could be allowed in an interpretation of quantum theory.


    • Anthony on said:

      My idea in this regard (very philosophical surely) in terms of consciousness, since I became interested in these issues, is that in the first moments of death perhaps a kind of latent consciousness remains somehow connected to the brain
      Brain cells do not die instantly, it is a process that lasts a few minutes, so they may be able to generate some kind of minimal activity for a short time (perhaps related microtubules?). But I also think that at some point maybe the definitive closure will take place (Sam Parnia once said that at the moment he believes that consciousness can exist a few minutes or maybe hours after the clinical death of people, but that longer than that not known)
      I don’t think we live for eternity as some religious and paranormal lovers think. Rather I think that, making a comparison, maybe there is a still unknown force in the Universe, something like wifi signals. This still unknown field could generate consciousness in living beings and for this it would need a brain. That brain could be said to be like a radio or a computer (this has already been discussed a lot), but if that radio or computer breaks irremediably, you will not be able to access the millions of contents on the Internet. That is my idea about consciousness. I do not believe in an afterlife of landscapes, divine journeys or eternal life

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m really looking forward to the results of the aware 2 study


  6. Don’t you think that even if they find something, they just won’t be allowed to share it with the crowd? I mean, it will be absolute revolution in science, our world will certainly change. And nobody can predict how people would react. Some superior officers can decide that it’s better to hide such information. What do you think? Yes, now all these experiments don’t seem to be “dangerous” (in social way) and Mr. Parnia with his team share some information with us, but what will happen if they really find any proofs? I don’t really know… But I feel like it’s not that kind of data which they can just release for us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Alcke, I do somewhat share your conspiracy theory concerns. I once received an email from Dr Parnia that hinted at the opposition that he was up against. Academia is dominated by the materialist dogma. However, I see some hope from the field of evolutionary biology. I am not an expert on biological evolution (my expertise in that area is in Origin Of Life research, which is very different since it predates biological evolution), but I do have questions about how systems such as our brain, or things like ears and noses could evolve by a process of Darwinian evolution. Macro evolution has been openly questioned in academic meetings recently, such as the Royal Society, but this discourse has yet to filter out into the public arena.

      In the area of origin of life research, I have seen some egregious attempts to gaslight respected scientists who question the belief in the natural abiotic synthesis of biological precursors, despite there being zero evidence to support the spontaneous emergence of life, and a mountain of evidence against such theories (the subject of my book DNA: The Elephant in the lab). This academic establishment, along with the likes of the BBC, regularly push out material that works on the assumption that completely impossible processes occurred. That doesn’t stop others presenting material that challenges this current dogma, but it is jut not accepted by the establishment.

      I think where the Parnia lab will have its greatest challenge is finding a sufficiently respectable medical journal that will publish his work if it does prove beyond doubt that the consciousness is indeed a separate entity from the body. I think they might demand a very high burden of proof. He may be forced to go outside of the officially approved route and publish them in a book or something.

      We will see, but I share your concerns on this subject.


      • @Ben

        Ben said> “This academic establishment, along with the likes of the BBC, regularly push out material that works on the assumption that completely impossible processes occurred.”

        Yes, I agree, Ben they do. And yet the alternative impossible process (in their eyes) an intelligence behind the universe, is anathema to them.

        The recent tweet (10-15% etc) is obviously from data that Aware 2 has produced.
        But such data is nothing less than toxic to materialist Academia. So much so, I am wondering how they will respond or even >if< they will respond.

        The Inquisition, Stephen Novella and his supporters, will likely go after the small percentages. He/they will certainly triumphantly highlight the absence of a double blind hit and try to discount the whole study on that basis, as if accurate observations and memories reported by patients with no brain function don't count or aren't important lol 🙂

        I notice that they are now moving into the third phase of Aware, so presumably they will publish something soon?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ben,

        Origin of life? I thought that was settled back in the 1950s. Urey and Miller put together some soup, zapped it, and then amino acids, cells, trilobites, and people (sarcasm). At least that’s what all the biology textbooks still say.

        I also followed the Royal Society meeting on there big evolution meltdown, it looks like they are looking at a teleological based evolution models. It didn’t really come as a surprise to me but then again my field of engineering is known to butt heads with evolution on a not to infrequent basis.


    • Michael on said:

      I honestly don’t think the “hit” would even change that much in science. Honestly there have been studies over that last 15 to 20 years in Brazil, the UK, and the Netherlands that study scientists views on the topic of whether the mind and brain are separate entities and the results have been steadily changing since consciousness research has really taken off. All the studies show that roughly 40-60% of active scientists in all of these geographic areas are of the camp that thinks the mind and brain may be separate. This is a major increase from previous decades.

      There’s just a lot of evidence from all angles nowadays to support this. Psychedelic drug research showing that the deeper the experience, the less coordinated brain activity, paradoxical lucidity, NDE’s, theories of consciousness like Orch OR, Tononi’s IIT, and Sam Parnia’s work… it’s just a lot honestly.

      This “hit” I think would just kind of fit in with what has been slowly happening. I think honestly it’s just the hardcore materialistic scientists are just louder than others.


  7. I am wondering, have you heard of any NDE reports where the experiencer claimed that he could perceive the thoughts of other physical people (rather than just seeing or hearing things) and there was a corroboration of that?


    • @Tomas

      Tomas said > “I am wondering, have you heard of any NDE reports where the experiencer claimed that he could perceive the thoughts of other physical people (rather than just seeing or hearing things) and there was a corroboration of that?”

      Yes, many times! There are some examples in “The Self Does not die” for instance. One which springs to mind is that of Dr George Rodonaia, who amongst many remarkable events saw the thoughts of his wife who was weighing up (already choosing) who her future husband was going to be.

      He actually confronted her with this when he came back to life (later on) and she was so freaked out by it that she couldn’t live with him anymore as he knew her thoughts (the content of her mind).

      There are others which off the top of my head I can’t just bring to mind, but I know they exist (in that book and others). There are also several video accounts from German sources I’ve seen where the patient has died on the operating table and come back to inform the surgeons what they were thinking. At least if they are telling us the truth, that is, but it seems unlikely that every case is dishonest, I would have thought.

      This one from a very reliable source, Dr Tom Aufderheide, Professor of Emergency medicine in Milwaukee USA, was discussed here in 2019.

      Starts at 46.18 and he mentions the event of having his thoughts read by the patient @ 52.25

      Of course he could be lying. He could be, but I’m not sure why anyone would lie about such a thing, let alone a medical professional like (the then young) Aufderheide, who had never heard of near death experiences at the time and wouldn’t have been particularly interested in them, surely.


      • More tweets from Parnia Lab, I see.


        “Many people who are on the brink of death, or have even crossed beyond the threshold of death after their hearts stop, experience what researchers are increasingly referring to as a recalled experience of death (RED).

        A RED is a transcendent experience that follows a specific narrative: a perception of external visual awareness and separation from the body, heading to a destination, reliving a recording of life that is purposeful, meaningful, and educational, being “home” again, and being faced with a decision to return back to life.

        This leads to positive transformative changes, as evidenced by seeking greater meaning to life beyond conventional measures of social success.

        Researchers are grappling with many questions. In these moments when people’s hearts have stopped beating, and there is a severely disordered brain, or there is little to no detectable brain activity, how is it that people can lucidly recall such vivid experiences? Why do these experiences contain such consistent themes? And how does being in such an extreme state lead to profound knowledge?”

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yep, as Eduardo said in a PM to me, this and the other Tweets hardly support the idea that they do not have something more definitive in terms of data. They are ramping up the expectations…I hope they don’t disappoint!


      • Also, what’s with the RED? We have gone from NDE to ADE, to TED and now to RED! If they use this as the official label for what the rest of the world calls NDEs, then the study will fly well below the radar…maybe that is the plan…a cunning one at that:


      • @Ben

        Ben said > “Also, what’s with the RED? We have gone from NDE to ADE, to TED and now to RED! If they use this as the official label for what the rest of the world calls NDEs, then the study will fly well below the radar…maybe that is the plan…a cunning one at that:

        Lol ! Love that clip from Blackadder, hilarious ! It could well be a cunning plan to keep the ‘ship’ off the radar (removing NDE the hot button topic) Personally, I see it as an attempt to knock off the various ‘limpets’ (pseudo sceptics and mischievous perennial debunkers) from the ‘boat’, forever.

        The term NDE has been muddying the waters now far too long. Only last night I saw a series of posts from a pseudo sceptic who continued to highlight the NEAR as a clause to discount the experience.

        They didn’t really die, he stated with authority, nothing to see, move on, although the person in the video had suffered a prolonged cardiac arrest which is the same as death (first stage of) and it was nothing short of ‘miraculous’ that she survived.

        I’ve had a belly full of pseudo-sceptics, myself. If some RED ‘spray’ can finally kill these pests off, I’m all for it.

        Not genuine (true) sceptics, though, they of course are always welcome!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks. The ability od NDErs to perceive thoughts of other physical people wouldn’t prove that NDErs perceive the physical world only through the minds of other people with functioning brains but it would mean at least thaf NDErs have access to the minds of other people with functioning brains.

        I know that NDErs often say that NDEs feel somehow more real than normal experience of life. Does that also apply to the perception of the physical world during an NDE? Does an NDEr perceive the physical world more clearly, vividly or accurately than people’s normal perception of the physical world? Or does the hyper-realness of an NDE apply more to other feelings or to the perception of a spiritual realm, while the perception of the physical world is perhaps even dimmed in comparison to normal perception?


      • That’s an interesting question Tomas. My understanding is that they are able to perceive the physical more completely I.e. their sense are enhanced, they have 360 degree vision and incredibly sensitive hearing, and it would appear the ability to hear people’s thoughts. On the other side, in the spirit realm, they have these enhanced senses, but also an enhanced environment with new colours and landscapes.


      • @Ben

        What would be the purpose then of incarnating in a physical body if it doesn’t provide an enhanced perception of the physical world (or if the physical body actually provides a worse perception of the physical world than a discarnate state)? I would expect that the physical body provides something advantageous that the discarnate state doesn’t.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Why would you suppose that? From my faith, and from the accounts of NDEs it would appear that this world is a testing or training ground for souls. It is a poor reflection of the true reality, and the physical bodies in which we find ourselves are designed to interact with this “created” reality. Once we leave our bodies we’re able to perceive this created “reality” better, but still learn that the true reality which lies beyond is infinitely superior…if we get there.


      • Ben, does that mean that we can interact with physical reality more effectively via physical bodies than without them? Perception is a form of interaction.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. 😆 🤣 😂


  9. I think this tweet gently hints that we must remain patient (the 2nd one in response to the first). But it also suggests that the previous tweets are? from their research and not the field at large.

    Really appreciate these regular updates on your research. Excited for what’s next in store for Parnia labs experiments. Thanks to you and the team 👏

    @ourrestingplaceig Thanks for your support! 🙂 It’s a slow process, but we’re excited to share more of our research as well!

    It’s a slow process, but they have some interesting data.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Occurred to me The Meaning of Life has a cracking scene of relevance to all this when The Grim Reaper visits the diners who’ve just eaten the Salmon Mousse. And also takes one who didn’t eat any.
    This should be standard footage at any afterlife science conference.


  11. Bit of a update


    • Exciting!


    • Very exciting. Sounds like the publication is imminent.


      • Certainly is , Ben (and all). A quick analysis of what they’re saying (apologies if I’ve made an error anywhere)

        (nyugsum_ccrs) “Since the second phase of AWARE began, we have enrolled 570 cardiac arrest patients across 26 different hospitals worldwide.”

        So, I’m assuming (only assuming that is) that “enrolled” (as in the Instagram post) means the same as “recruited” . Last time we saw the figures, it was 465 recruited with (44) 9% of those surviving to discharge and a potential interview (again potentially with a % we don’t know, but certainly not the whole 9%)

        570 patients, say 9-10% survived (at worst) to (potentially) be interviewed, so between 51 and 57 patients could have been questioned, but the figure will be less than that.

        Then only 10-20% of those that are questioned/interviewed will have had an NDE or RED as Parnia is now terming them.

        So at best 20% of 57 = 11 patients with RED or at 10% about 6 patients with RED.
        That’s based on an assumption, though that enrolled means the same as recruited (If not then it’s more interviews)

        “If” it does, then what we have is a low number of RED’s (we know why this is) but nevertheless, that doesn’t matter in itself in a well controlled study like this, because you only need one patient to have had an experience (when their brain couldn’t have been functioning) to have something very scientifically significant!

        What they won’t have (or it’s very unlikely that they will), is anyone seeing the visual picture (the laptop target) as the percentage of out of body experiences normally reported during NDE’s would only suggest between 1 and 3 might have had one (an OBE during NDE) and then you have to assume that they actually had a chance to see it by floating up into the correct position, but who knows. Such a tiny number of potential OBE’s is never going to test it properly. Aware 3 will be boosted/refined, I would imagine?

        Although ‘sceptics’ will (no doubt) make a big issue of this, ignoring all the monumental difficulties in actually getting any data (interviewed survivors) at all (as they always do) what they have (or they appear to have?) is still very important.

        This is the first ever collection of hospital patients to be interviewed about their cardiac arrest NDE’S/RED’s with the addition of cerebral oximetry and EEG on them. That’s as good as it gets (without a hit) and any data is going to be invaluable.

        Lastly, they will have (I’m assuming) Cerebral oximetry and EEG data for ALL the 570 patients recruited into the study, even the ones that sadly died before or after their hearts were re-started, which is also very valuable data, as they will have been able to see what the state of the patient’s brains were after cardiac arrest and during CPR etc.

        Great stuff, Dr Parnia and his team ! Thanks for all your hard work !


      • I am surprised that they haven’t recruited much more than that since the AHA poster, even with COVID. Anyway, we will see…only needs one hit.


    • Thanks!


      • Ben said >” I am surprised that they haven’t recruited much more than that since the AHA poster, even with COVID. Anyway, we will see…only needs one hit.”

        True but that’s the ultimate. If they’ve got a veridical OBE (?) timed to a period of no brain activity (as monitored by a flat EEG) then that is certainly arguably (if not effectively) materialism falsified.

        However, they (sceptics) will of course dispute it as insufficient… there might have been an error somewhere etc, which is understandable for what’s at stake here, I suppose.

        Nevertheless, for some, particularly the ideologically driven (die hard materialists), it will be enough to unsettle them, for sure.


      • Absolutely. But it is not the die hard atheists that I am bothered with, it is the 90% who have been convinced by them, but who might be less convinced if there is a hit.


  12. I disagree. I think true skeptics (not those merely for the cash and the ego-boost) will never accept but most people, will. If Parnia finds real evidence, I don’t think it’ll be long before a multitude of today’s atheists and agnostics start waking up and thinking, ‘Hey, why am I still an atheist? There actual evidence now! Why be all depressed and angry, the heck with it all, I’m joining in!’

    Likely, spiritualism will get a huge boost, but perhaps not so much religion.


    • I think you are possibly right. I think a lot of people will veer towards New Age and Eastern interpretations of spirituality…it is amazing how Western corporations have already embraced many aspects of Buddhist teaching.


    • @itz
      In case Parnia found the evidence, I don’t think any religious awakening was necessary, at least I don’t link this whole thing to any religion. It would be an investigation according to science but not attached to materialism. For my part, I (and I imagine that many) would continue to be an atheist and many others agnostics.


      • I made a slight error — I meant to write that the real skeptics would “convert” to spirituality (as your average citizen) but NOT those in it for the money and fame (and pride).

        If Parnia proves NDEs/OBEs as real, over the coming decades (with more funding, research), it’ll become accepted as “science,” as “reality.” Just as the Big Bang once sounded too “religious” to the eyes and minds of many of the West’s astute scientists, so too will NDEs. They’ll fight it, but they’ll eventually lose and give in themselves (why not, after all?).

        I think the ordinary atheist citizen (which we have many these days) will turn even faster.


      • Most people don’t think for themselves and just subscribe to whatever belief/viewpoint is touted in which media they digest. Pride is a big deal, and even more potent than money once you have enough.


  13. According to their last instagram post they distinguish 3 types of memory : 1 during “death, 1 before emerging from coma and dream-like experiences. They say they have enrolled 570 patients through 26 hospitals.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I think this important because the skeptics often claim that the 3 are the same thing, and that NDEs are just a function of the experience before or after death, but not during, but if Parnia shows that there are completely different physiological parameters in play specific to each type of experience, then he can put the idea they are the same to bed.


  14. New update on the Parnia Lab Instagram.

    “ Whether awake or asleep, your
    brain is constantly sending impulses as electrical
    activity, which can be seen on
    electroencephalography (EEG). For many years,
    scientists struggled to find a way to study what
    happens to electrical impulses in the brain after
    the heart stops, or when doctors attempt to re-
    start the heart through CPR. What they did know
    was that normal brain activity transitions to a
    “flatline” within 2-20 seconds, but what happens
    later was a mystery.
    As part of our ongoing AWARE-Il study, we
    completed the largest and most comprehensive
    study of EEG during prolonged courses of
    cardiopulmonary resuscitation. We found that
    while the majority of the time, the EEG data was
    “flatlined”, incredibly, normal or near-normal
    waves emerged even after 40-60 minutes of
    CPR. Notably, the incidence of “normal” EEG
    rhythms was correlated with greater probability of
    successfully restarting the heart.
    What does all this mean for understanding what
    happens to the human mind and consciousness
    during cardiac arrest, death, and CPR?
    Additionally, how does it impact or challenge the
    commonly held belief that permanent brain
    damage occurs within minutes of oxygen deprivation?”

    What do you think this update means???


    • Yes, I signed up to Instagram because of their insistence of releasing data on there! Being in the UK I am asleep when these posts appear.

      This was something that was mentioned in one the 2019 AHA posters, and has plagued this blog’s discussion since. It certainly gives the skeptics some meat to chew on since suggesting that normal brain activity can occur during CPR supports their assertion that NDEs are a result of this kind of physiological occurrence. However, in an essay submitted to the Bigelow competition, Parnia seemed to discount this hypothesis. The kind of conscious recollections that might occur as a result of normal brain activity are nothing like those that are reported in NDEs.

      The key to answering this will be correlating timed reports of conscious recollections with EEG readout. If all the NDE like reports occur during periods of “normal” or “near normal” EEG activity, then the skeptics will be breaking open the champagne. However, given Parnia’s continued and consistent position that NDEs are not a result of this, then he is probably sitting on evidence that contradicts this. Hopefully that will be released shortly.


      • Michael DeCarli on said:

        Okay I see. I never could find the 2019 AHA poster but I have seen people discuss it on your blog. I was thinking this was new data.

        Also, I read his Bigelow essay. The CPR portion really confused me. I pieced together that he was saying he didn’t believe CPR could produce enough blood flow to the brain to produce highly structured thought processes that would indicate an NDE, and that CPR induced consciousness only happens like .3% of the time. But other than that I was confused.

        Lastly, this Instagram post also confuses me, are they saying that normal eeg reads are recorded 40-60 minutes into prolonged CPR EVERYTIME or just rarely?

        And, wasn’t the “hit” that Parnia had in AWARE I timed during a period of total flatline???

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Though IF Parnia does prove it, the media will quickly learn to tout that, no?


    • Depends which media you are referring to. Some papers are notoriously atheist/materialist in their outlook and will treat any idea that science supports the understanding the soul is eternal as heretical. In particular the Guardian in the UK, but also Nature in the science world.


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