13 September 2011

Exploring the Near Death Experience

Someone called TheSurvivalIndex has put out a 15 minute video detailing the cultural phenomena associated with the NDE. He says three main groups of people form the bulk of the popular presentation on the NDE:
1. Fundamentalist Christians,
2. New Age Haberdashers, and
3. Fundamaterialist Skep-Dicks.
Group 1 latches on to the pro-Fundamentalist Christian NDEs as proof of their beliefs and ignores or even denigrates NDEs that are favourable to other religions or to no religions at all (like atheists who have NDEs that tell them part of their life's mission is to be an atheist). Group 2 extrapolates from the NDE to believe all sorts of stuff that most likely is untrue (Loch Ness Monster, Fairies, Vampires, etc.*) and often tries to profit large offering spurious services to unknowledgable people. Group 3 likes to come up with bullshit just-so stories to explain away the NDE because they are committed to materialism, even when those stories blatantly ignore real facts, are based on illogic, and other fundamaterialists disagree and tear apart opposing stories. All three groups are able to thrive because the general populous doesn't actually read the primary material - actual NDE accounts and the reports of NDE investigators. Even though all three groups are contradicted by the evidence that doesn't bother them because as long as the vast majority of people are ignorant of that evidence they can still come off looking like authority figures.

*I'm not necessarily saying things like the Loch Ness Monster and fairies are not real - they may be - but I have looked into the topics and can't really find any good evidence for them. Loch Ness almost certainly can't support a single large creature, let alone a breeding population. There were biosonar signals detected in Lake Champlain though, indicating that, while not a "monster" there has to be a freshwater equivalent of a cetacean, something that has never before been seen. Things like fairies, gnomes, and other little people stretch my credulity a might, but they may have something to do with some spiritual force, I don't know and am open to the possibility. Vampires, either corpses reanimated by evil spirits (as the original vampires were), people infected with a virus that compells them to drink blood, or these psychic vampires who are real people who claim to drain people's energy in some way they never quite explain, are probably one of the least likely of these "paranormal" phenomena. If vampires reproduce like zombies there should have been a "vampire" apocalypse by now. The vampires in the Blade movies kept changing to suit the story and the Underworld vampires were never really explained very well, so I don't know how they stayed in hiding all these centuries. Psychic vampirism appears to be a lifestyle choice, like hippies or bikers other such groups, and probably aren't vampires at all, although they get happiness from playing a role. There are people who are difficult or depressed or assaholic and drain your energy that way, but there's nothing "paranormal" about that.