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TDB: Heaven is Real: A Doctor's Experience With the Afterlife


AsburySkinsFan

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It's interesting that nobody seems to want to discuss what, to me at least, is the most important angle of this: the mind-body problem.

If this neuroscientist is correct that he had the experience while the cortex was completely shut down, eliminating the standard naturalistic explanations generally given, then this would constitute evidence that the mind is separate from the body, which has any number of interesting implications, of which a blow against naturalism would be only one.

Personally, I don't find it totally convincing, not because I think there's a viable naturalistic explanation (despite the attempts of a few to provide them in this thread, I tend to think that cortical shutdown pre-empts them, and it's not an argument from authority to say that an expert in this field could rule out said explanations, as the doctor apparently has), but rather because it's just one story, and honestly, how do we know it's true or the memory is accurate?

I would be far more intrigued by a result in the study alexey mentioned with the signs.

In the past few years scientists have been astonished to discover that every winner of every lottery carefully tuned his numbers to match the numbers that will come out.

For the record, this is the most simplistic and easily refuted objection to the fine tuning argument offered, though to be fair, I wasn't all that impressed with the initial presentation either. :ols:

One of the better proponents of this argument is Robin Collins (the link is his homepage). On that site, one can find both a lay audience version of his work, as well as a much more technical paper (the fifth link). There's also a link taking the aforementioned Victor Stenger to task as well.

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no "we" involved. C'est moi.

If you are just going to cut and paste someone else's argument found on the internet, why don't you do a little searching and then post the counter-arguments that have been written against that same text. Or write a bot to do it for you.

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If you are just going to cut and paste someone else's argument found on the internet, why don't you do a little searching and then post the counter-arguments that have been written against that same text. Or write a bot to do it for you.

Sorry, princess. I thought since you all were so convinced it took a real idiot to believe in God that I would show you some evidence I thought to be powerful that was supported by brilliant minds.

In the future I will be sure to never disturb you again. I'm truely sorry. Your lastest posts were brilliant. They responded to the argument as a whole so wonderfuly and with such great insight.

Who needs proof of a God when we have one right infront of us!

Good day, my lord.

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no "we" involved. C'est moi.

But on a related note, nobody actually gave a meaningful response to my control c control v.

Your copy and paste has false statements (which I've already highlighted), misrepresents what people think (e.g. Stephen Hawking):

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/sep/02/stephen-hawking-big-bang-creator

"Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing," he writes. "Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist.

"It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going."

And ignores scientifically possible (maybe even at this point in tmie it would be fair to say probable) explanations for the appearant fine tuning (e.g. multiple dimensions).

Try reading a LITTLE on the topic, even googling some of the information in it, and you will see substantial discussion on the topic in multiple places.

(Note, I've been through this with techboy, and there is at least an argument to be made there (not one that I like personally), but the way your source does it is a joke and dishonest or plain old ignorant and should be ridiculed.

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Sorry, princess. I thought since you all were so convinced it took a real idiot to believe in God that I would show you some evidence I thought to be powerful that was supported by brilliant minds.

In the future I will be sure to never disturb you again. I'm truely sorry. Your amino acid post was brilliant. It responded to the argument as a whole so wonderfuly and with such great insight.

Who needs proof of a God when we have one right infront of us!

Good day, my lord.

:ols:

The Princess God. That's a first. I like it.

Or you could have just provided the link to the text you found convincing. Or searched and found the counter arguments.

But then I wouldn't have been honored with a new title.

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Your copy and paste has false statements (which I've already highlighted), misrepresents what people think (e.g. Stephen Hawking):

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/sep/02/stephen-hawking-big-bang-creator

"Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing," he writes. "Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist.

"It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going."

And ignores scientifically possible (maybe even at this point in tmie it would be fair to say probable) explanations for the appearant fine tuning (e.g. multiple dimensions).

Try reading a LITTLE on the topic, even googling some of the information in it, and you will see substantial discussion on the topic in multiple places.

(Note, I've been through this with techboy, and there is at least an argument to be made there (not one that I like personally), but the way your source does it is a joke and dishonest or plain old ignorant and should be ridiculed.

Yeah I know, I just thought I'd post a compelling argument. I'd research the source if I had all day to play, but I don't. I see what you mean. Thanks for a pretty decent reply.

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Sorry, princess. I thought since you all were so convinced it took a real idiot to believe in God that I would show you some evidence I thought to be powerful that was supported by brilliant minds.

In the future I will be sure to never disturb you again. I'm truely sorry. Your lastest posts were brilliant. They responded to the argument as a whole so wonderfuly and with such great insight.

Who needs proof of a God when we have one right infront of us!

Good day, my lord.

1. It was my amino acid comment.

2. You should learn about what the set characters you are addressing before making comments about what they believe.

3. Do some learning, come with some real information that you actually know and understand, and I'll be more than happy to have a conversation with you.

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1. It was my amino acid comment.

2. You should about what the set characters you are addressing before making comments about what they believe.

3. Do some learning, come with some real information that you actually know and understand, and I'll be more than happy to have a conversation with you.

1. I know (hence the edit)

2. TRU

3. I wasn't trying to have a consversation with you. No time. Just wanted to quickly share something.

But at least you're not being a jackass (no sarcasm). I'm out.

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It's interesting that nobody seems to want to discuss what, to me at least, is the most important angle of this: the mind-body problem.

If this neuroscientist is correct that he had the experience while the cortex was completely shut down, eliminating the standard naturalistic explanations generally given, then this would constitute evidence that the mind is separate from the body, which has any number of interesting implications, of which a blow against naturalism would be only one.

...

This story is no better than tons of other stories, anecdotes, and folk psychology theories that gave rise to the "mind-body problem".

There is no reason to think that his experiences generated during the period of inactivity of his brain.

There is currently no evidence that the mind can exist without the brain. The"mind-body problem" is imaginary.

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Yeah I know, I just thought I'd post a compelling argument. I'd research the source if I had all day to play, but I don't. I see what you mean. Thanks for a pretty decent reply.

1. You're pretty bad at this, both in presentation and tone. I'd suggest you not bother in the future, unless your goal is to actually be counterproductive to the stated purpose of the link you provided, at least until you have the time, demeanor, and the interest to do it properly.

2. You had better not have caused me to get sucked into a drawn out argument about fine tuning, because it's totally off topic and I'm tired. :ols:

---------- Post added October-11th-2012 at 04:40 PM ----------

This story is no better than tons of other stories, anecdotes, and folk psychology theories that gave rise to the "mind-body problem".

Perhaps. If you'll recall, I expressed skepticism in this case myself, though I'd note that it was you (to my surprise, actually), that stated that no-one denies these experiences happened, because if they did happen, it's pretty difficult to explain how in the naturalistic "mind is the body format".

The mind body problem is nonexistent.

This is going to come as a shock to a lot of scholars. :ols:

Perhaps you'd be nice enough to begin phoning around to the various universities?

There is currently no evidence that the mind can exist without the brain.

This doctor's experience is evidence. Perhaps it's not good enough evidence (on its own, anyway), or evidence that you personally would accept, but it's evidence. You do have a tendency to make sweeping statements like this without the proper qualifiers. :)

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This doctor's experience is evidence. Perhaps it's not good enough evidence (on its own, anyway), or evidence that you personally would accept, but it's evidence. You do have a tendency to make sweeping statements like this without the proper qualifiers. :)

This is a good reply.

When it all boils down, stories have to be evidence, or at least be included in evidence. Testimony is included in evidence for the courts, your buddies telling of a crazy event that happened to him 20 years ago is evidence towards it having actually happened.

This is the case for this story. I have talked to a few people that believe they witnessed heaven, and they all talked about the same happiness and feeling of love and comfort. My grandfather being one of them when he died and came back a few years before his eventual passing.

Threads like this will always get non believers coming in posting facts here or facts there with the attempt to disprove what did or did not happen, or further evidence against God. And there will always be those believers that will harp back disdainfully, and at the end of the day it is what it is.

No one really ever knows until it happens to them, so all the science in the world can never disprove it ever, because it is a personal happening, It can't be measured or recorded it cant be observed by others or seen with the most powerful microscope.

What happens when one dies is theirs and theirs alone, which in my opinion makes it infinitely more special. We all have our own coming to us, it is inevitable, and I'm sure the experience will be different for every single one of us, and at the end of the day everyone is wondering the same thing, or lead their lives they way they do for it.. believers and non believers are all intertwined by the wonder whether they like it or not

:)

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Perhaps. If you'll recall, I expressed skepticism in this case myself, though I'd note that it was you (to my surprise, actually), that stated that no-one denies these experiences happened, because if they did happen, it's pretty difficult to explain how in the naturalistic "mind is the body format".

I am not sure what you mean. I am merely affirming that the professor is self-reporting some kind of an activity that took place in his brain.

This is going to come as a shock to a lot of scholars. :ols:

Perhaps you'd be nice enough to begin phoning around to the various universities?

Are you suggesting that philosophers only work on important actual problems that definitely exist?

This doctor's experience is evidence. Perhaps it's not good enough evidence (on its own, anyway), or evidence that you personally would accept, but it's evidence. You do have a tendency to make sweeping statements like this without the proper qualifiers. :)

I have no problem using the term "evidence" here and accepting this as evidence... evidence of activity in people's brains.

---------- Post added October-11th-2012 at 04:54 PM ----------

....

No one really ever knows until it happens to them,

....

or even after it happens.

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There is no reason to think that his experiences generated during the period of inactivity of his brain.

You edited this in after I replied, and I do think this is a fair point. I googled around a bit, and although I found another interview with the doctor, I couldn't find anything where he specifically explained how he knew that his experience occurred during the period of cortical shutdown. It's compelling that he was under careful and constant medical monitoring during that time, but I wonder how he knows he didn't have the experience immediately before or after, for example.

The only thing that gives me pauses is that he is an expert in neuroscience and a former proponent of reductionism, who knows all of the typical explanations, so I'd have to think that he had some reason to rule those possibilities out, but if he has offered such a reason, I have not read it. Maybe it's in the book.

My other more general problem, I suppose, is that something like this, in order to be credible, should really be published in an academic setting, preferably a peer-reviewed journal, not hyped to Newsweek to push book sales. I find that icky, much like the annual "we found Jesus' body! In a bar! With a hooker!" extravaganza that arises around Easter.

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or even after it happens.

That is subjective though.

Belief is knowing for oneself.. some believe one thing, others do not.

No one can say they know this experience is false or they know it is true, its all belief

This Doctor had his own personal experience that no one can ever take away from him. He knows something happened to him and he believes it to be what he described it as.

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....

The only thing that gives me pauses is that he is an expert in neuroscience and a former proponent of reductionism, who knows all of the typical explanations, so I'd have to think that he had some reason to rule those possibilities out, but if he has offered such a reason, I have not read it. Maybe it's in the book.

...

It makes a lot more sense if you think of the good professor's positions as a result of activity in his brain rather than reflections of his rational soul.

Professor's brain suffered a severely traumatic experience. There were waves of sporadic activity, neurons dying, all kinds of stuff. Why is it surprising that changes to his brain ended up changing his mind? It is great that he managed to get through the ordeal with his personality largely intact. Many people do not.

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Alexey I also liked that you brought up how he knows this happened while his brain was completely shut down. I thought this question too, and I'm on board with techboy in his response. I wonder if he does cover it in his book..

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It makes a lot more sense if you think of the good professor's positions as a result of activity in his brain rather than reflections of his rational soul.

We could assume that he's just choosing to believe this without any rational explanation because that's what he felt, yes, or we could be good skeptics and leave open the possibility that, as a former reductionist and current expert in neuroscience, he has an actual good reason to exclude the naturalistic possibilities, at least until there's some actual reason (apart from an a priori commitment to naturalism) to conclude otherwise.

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That is subjective though.

Belief is knowing for oneself.. some believe one thing, others do not.

No one can say they know this experience is false or they know it is true, its all belief

This Doctor had his own personal experience that no one can ever take away from him. He knows something happened to him and he believes it to be what he described it as.

I see no problem with personal beliefs diverging from what we know about reality... as long as they do not get pushed on me or my children, etc. Also, having agreement on reality helps us figure out what we should do about it.

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I see no problem with personal beliefs diverging from what we know about reality... as long as they do not get pushed on me or my children, etc.

I was going to make a stupid joke, but I don't want to deal with the potential fallout, especially because I couldn't get the wording exactly right. Never mind.

Jumbo can have fun going back through the edits, though. :silly:

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I see no problem with personal beliefs diverging from what we know about reality... as long as they do not get pushed on me or my children, etc. Also, having agreement on reality helps us figure out what we should do about it.

My reality right now is I have a beer.. what should I do with it? haha

And I agree with you 100% about the pushing. I myself am a believer, and I have friends that do not. The individuals that began to push their criticisms and non belief on me or even joking about the believers.. well that's when I cut ties... basically what techboy said haha

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We could assume that he's just choosing to believe this without any rational explanation because that's what he felt, yes, or we could be good skeptics and leave open the possibility that, as a former reductionist and current expert in neuroscience, he has an actual good reason to exclude the naturalistic possibilities, at least until there's some actual reason (apart from an a priori commitment to naturalism) to conclude otherwise.

I am not sure where is the mystery here. His experience changed his brain. His experience was so profound, we could even say that he did not really have a choice on the matter. He may have good reasons to hold his position and we may have good reasons not to share his position.

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