What is considered as a proof?
There is one thing I must say in advance: there is currently no scientifically accepted evidence of a soul that can live independently of the body, or for a hereafter. In other words, the existing evidences are not recognized by many scientists.
Most representatives of current science firmly believe in monism / materialism, although many discoveries in quantum physics and nuclear physics indicate otherwise. The two fundamental dogmas of science are neo-Darwinism, that is, the creation of man by chance, by mutation and selection, and the big bang theory. Both are theoretical models that have many contradictions, and yet science maintains it. In 2004, 33 international scientists published a letter against the big bang theory in the New Scientist, and a total of 287 scientists signed it afterwards. But nothing has changed, all media continue to glorify the big bang theory and Neo-Darwinism.
Why is that? In contrast to Galileo’s time, there is no longer a church that watches over science and burns heretics. But research and every single scientist are extremely dependent on research funds, that’s billions of dollars, and no government or private donor wants to show any weakness and swim against the mainstream. Against this background it is not trendy nor expedient to admit that, despite recent progress, we do not really know much.
The scientific proof
At what level do we want to have proof? We can not bring the proof that an exact science, such as physics or mathematics demands, because we can neither measure nor weigh the soul or the hereafter. Conversely, it is also not possible for the monists to prove that there is no soul or no beyond. On the one hand, proof that something does not exist is fundamentally impossible for reasons of logic. Second, every physical law of nature has a scope. Newton’s laws are valid only in a range that is far from the speed of light. And even the law of conservation of energy and the thermodynamic theorems are valid only in a closed system. Even the principle that there is no perpetual motion machine applies only to our 3-D universe. The soul and the hereafter, however, are not part of the closed 3-D universe we know but go beyond it.
The prevailing science is looking for a counter-proof, which states that the soul and the hereafter do not exist. However, science confines itself to proving that a near-death experience, in particular separation from one’s own body, can also be produced in another way: through certain drugs, through deprivation of oxygen, through electrical stimulation of a specific region in the temporal lobe. But this is not counter evidence, but only serves to reduce the credibility of near-death experiences. In this way, one can prove to the utmost that the feeling of being separated from one’s own body can be produced by different ways, that is, by other ways than by a near-death. One can not prove whether a soul actually separates from the body or whether that is an illusion. That is why all these proofs are obsolete. […] No logical proof is possible on this path, which many monistic thinking scientists take.
Many esoteric teachings say that the soul separates from the body during sleep – only part of the soul separates in sleep, the so-called “etheric body” stays with the body, in death the etheric body also goes with the astral body and with the soul into the other world. There are many known mechanisms and centers in the brain for the waking and sleeping state. It is certainly interesting, which mechanisms are there for the slide into the dream world, but the core question – is there a transcendent soul or not – can not be clarified in this way.
The judicial evidence
How about a proof at the level of a court? Maybe a circumstantial evindence? There are many thousands of clues, but that would not satisfy a true skeptic. How would that be if a court, for example a jury, had to clarify this question on the basis of testimonies? How would you decide if you were a juror in such a court?
Using statistics, it has been proven that the near-death experience differs fundamentally from any delusion or hallucination by the fact that these people experience a major turnaround in their lives, get a different attitude to the values of life and usually change their way of life. There are several studies. This makes these experiences believable, but can not convince many skeptics.
Evidence is meaningful where people experience things from our 3-D world during an NDE or an out-of-body experience that they could not otherwise have experienced and that we can validate with our 3-D resources. There are several individual examples, which I have enumerated on the page “the sight of the blind”. One very convincing case is “Maria’s Shoe” and the other cases described at the bottom of my page “near-death experiences”.
There are still a few similar cases. Here you can not talk of chance. These patients were severely ill in the hospital and had no way to get any information before. How else could one explain this than with a soul with consciousness that was outside the body at a time when there was hardly any or no brain activity at all? Should the patient Maria have been in telepathic contact with the tennis shoe? A telepathic contact is only possible with intact brain activity and only with familiar persons, not with tennis shoes.
These cases are convincing but rare and handpicked, no statistics can be created from them. An often-cited weakness is that they were usually not documented immediately after their genesis, but only later. This is in the nature of things – who would write a newspaper article or a book immediately after such an experience – but can not be systematically changed.
A skeptic could now only say: these cases are not notarized, the evidence is not secured, there are no video recordings, they may be invented. That would be the “conspiracy theory”: the NDE believers would have conspired against science and invent appropriate incidents for that purpose. That is beyond human reason. It would of course be beneficial if such cases were better documented. But in a cardiac arrest, the rescue team has other problems in mind than engaging a notary and a video team. And immediately after an NDE, the patient usually has other problems than to document and verify his experiences.
Motivation for the Recognition of an Evidence
Of course, everyone is free to believe what he wants and where his world of experience takes him. But whoever had an NDE himself does not need proof. He feels that his experience is true, even truer than anything else in his life.
There are emotional reasons to resist the reality of the soul detached from the body and the hereafter: the great achievement of the science of the past 300 years is the detachment from the hereafter and from God. It is the detachment of magical theories and the beginning of an exact science with measuring, counting and weighing, which makes sense. But for many religiously grown up people it is also the liberation from a compulsion to obey church rules and a fear of otherworldly punishment and “eternal hell-torment” – the rejection of the existence of a soul therefore has great subconscious emotional energies. The Age of Enlightenment (bloom around 1720-1800) brought the introduction of a critical and logical mindset that questions everything, including what used to be the inviolable sanctuary of the great religions. It is also the liberation of man from the former power of the Papal States and the church-dictated way of thinking. Should this achievement be abandoned now? Anyone who introduces a soul independent of the body will soon have to reintroduce a beyond world and a god. But the path of knowledge about the beyond does not lead back to the power of the clergy, not back to ancient dogmas, not back to the “eternal damnation in hell” invented by the church, but forward to the knowledge of what surrounds our world, and thereby also for the better knowledge of our material world. I say: we have been allowed to think freely and logically since the Enlightenment, so let us apply our logic to what we hear and read about the NDEs.
Whether someone believes the reports of near-death experiences and out of body experiences and considers true the existence of an immaterial soul and a world beyond and recognizes the evidence as such, remains an individual personal decision, but a decision with great effect on personal attitudes and views.
I myself had no NDE. But based on the facts presented, I assume that the reports of near-death experiences are true, that there is a soul independent from the body and a beyond. The following pages are mainly for readers who could gain a positive attitude for the afterlife.
[translation revised 02-Sep-2019]