Handbook of Near-Death Experiences: Thirty Years of Investigation

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Experts from around the world share the history and current state of near-death experience (NDE) knowledge. They explore controversies in the field, offer stories from their research, and express their hopes for the future of investigation into this fascinating phenomenon.

As modern medical techniques for resuscitation advance, NDEs are more frequently reported. These include more than the popular notions of moving through a tunnel or seeing a light. They also include people, once revived, knowing things their knowledge of which can't currently be explained. As The Handbook of Near-Death Experiences: Thirty Years of Investigation makes clear, great controversy exists in the medical and psychological fields concerning NDEs. Are they caused by physiological changes in the brain, or are they biological reactions to oxygen loss or impending death? Are they a product of changing states of consciousness? Or are they caused by something else altogether? All of these ideas and more are discussed in this unique and comprehensive volume.

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"Practitioners and researchers specializing in near-death experiences review the scientific literature in and from the perspectives of their various disciplines, mostly mental health, but also other health care fields and the social sciences. Among the topics are pleasurable western adult near-death experiences and their after effect, western children and teens, a census of non-western experiences to 2005, world religions, veridical perceptions, explanatory models, and practical applications of the research. Most of the 11 studies are based on presentations at a fall 2006 conference in Houston, Texas."


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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313358647
  • Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/30/2009
  • Pages: 316
  • Sales rank: 687,504
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Table of Contents

1 The field of near-death studies : past, present, and future Janice Miner Holden Holden, Janice Miner Bruce Greyson Greyson, Bruce Debbie James James, Debbie 1

2 Pleasurable Western adult near-death experiences : features, circumstances, and incidence Nancy L. Zingrone Zingrone, Nancy L. Carlos S. Alvarado Alvarado, Carlos S. 17

3 Aftereffects of pleasurable Western adult near-death experiences Russell Noyes, Jr. Noyes, Russell, Jr. Peter Fenwick Fenwick, Peter Janice Miner Holden Holden, Janice Miner Sandra Rozan Christian Christian, Sandra Rozan 41

4 Distressing Western near-death experiences : finding a way through the abyss Nancy Evans Bush Bush, Nancy Evans 63

5 "Trailing clouds of glory" : the near-death experiences of Western children and teens Cherie Sutherland Sutherland, Cherie 87

6 Characteristics of Western near-death experiences Janice Miner Holden Holden, Janice Miner Jeffrey Long Long, Jeffrey B. Jason MacLung MacLung, B. Jason 109

7 Census of non-Western near-death experiences to 2005 : observations and critical reflections Allan Kellehear Kellehear, Allan 135

8 World religions and near-death experiences Farnaz Masurnian Masurnian, Farnaz 159

9 Veridical perception in near-death experiences Janice Miner Holden Holden, Janice Miner 185

10 Explanatory models for near-death experiences Bruce Greyson Greyson, Bruce Emily Williams Kelly Kelly, Emily Williams Edward F. Kelly Kelly, Edward F. 213

11 Practical applications of research on near-death experiences Ryan D. Foster Foster, Ryan D. Debbie James James, Debbie Janice Miner Holden Holden, Janice Miner 235

References 259

Subject index 303

Name index 309

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 8, 2011

    An authoritative guide to near-death experiences

    This interesting new book provides an overview of thirty years of scientific NDE research undertaken since the publication of Dr Moody¿s Life After Life in 1975 and is based largely on a 'near-death studies' conference held at the University of Texas in Houston in 2006. The book includes a foreword by well known researcher Dr Kenneth Ring and consists of eleven tightly written chapters by well known researchers who have addressed key aspects of the NDE phenomenon.

    In the opening chapter the three co-editors provide an overview of what has happened in the field of Near-Death studies since 1975 as well as detailing apparent NDEs in earlier published sources. For example, in 1825 Henry Schoolcraft described what appears to be a NDE in his book Travels in the Central Portion of the Mississippi Valley, and another well-known 19th century explorer, David Livingstone, described a similar experience in Discoveries in the Interior of Africa in 1872. However, as one would expect, the NDE phenomenon itself correlates directly with advances in modern medical resuscitation technology, the most impressive scientific data collected to date describing the impact of NDEs on carefully monitored cardiac arrest patients. There are now over 600 scholarly articles on NDEs and specific themes have emerged within the scientific research itself. The new book addresses such issues as the nature of pleasurable and distressing NDEs within their respective contexts, near-death experiences in children and teenagers, and claims of veridical perception in NDEs ¿ here the researcher seeks to establish whether visual perceptions claimed by comatose NDE patients who find themselves outside or above their bodies are factually correct. The book closes with chapters describing explanatory models for NDEs and practical applications for NDE research in such areas as bereavement counselling.

    It is probably fair to say that readers who are well versed in the NDE literature will find much here that has been already described in other sources. Elements in the coverage that are less familiar include the scientific study of negative NDEs, cross-cultural comparisons of NDEs in different regions of the world, and an interesting chapter on attempts to test veridical perception in out-of-body states.

    Highly recommended

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    Posted September 25, 2009

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    Posted November 28, 2011

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