Descartes, redux

My mother had an out-of-body experience on the operating table once. She woke up and found herself in the corner of the room, watching all the medical people clustered around her body on the table. They gave her more anesthesia, and that was that.

You could write this off to some weird chemical effect from the anesthesia, but it’s interesting that it changed her perspective. More astounding, though, are the people in cardiac arrest, with no brain function, who, after they are resuscitated, are able to report what was going in the operating room.

Can they really? What if you put pictures above the operating table, face up, to test whether these presumably dead people could actually see them from their top-of-the-room perspective? And what if they could? What would that mean?

It sounds like a study that no one would ever do, in our sober rational age – except for Dr. Sam Parnia. It’s a very, very cool idea. He’s actually testing whether the mind is a scientific entity, separate from the brain, which we haven’t yet discovered.

This entry was posted in Dreams, consciousness, and weird things like that and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Descartes, redux

  1. Pingback: What would you do in an astral body? « Celebrating Time

  2. Pingback: What atheists and Jehovah’s Witnesses have in common « Celebrating Time

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