NDEs and Vedanta

OBE's, NDE's, lucid dreams, and the like...
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NDEs and Vedanta

Post by runstrails » Mon May 03, 2021 5:10 am

Nice talk by an American monk (Swami Mahayoganada) on Near Death Experiences and Advaita Vedanta. He summarizes the research on NDEs, describes the key features of NDEs and I particularly liked the emphasis on descriptions of infinite, unconditional love as an experience of divine consciousness.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxZ3uzzKveY

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by Webwanderer » Mon May 03, 2021 6:23 pm

Thanks for the link RT. In recent years I've come to the opinion that Raymond Moody made a mistake when he coined the term 'Near Death Experience' or NDE. Materialists in this forum and elsewhere have bludgeoned the term saying these experiences were not actually death, they were only 'near' death, therefore they prove nothing about the continuation of life after physical death. This of course, is just desperation to hold on to a materialist religion and avoid any evidence that challenges it.

The more accurate term, and more appropriate, I think, is TDE or temporary death experience. Many thousands of people who have had them were indeed clinically dead but returned and reanimated their physical forms with genuine memories of life beyond the physical body.

WW

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by runstrails » Mon May 03, 2021 10:06 pm

Great point WW. Totally agree.

I remain puzzled by highly intelligent and curious people who seem to want to hold on to a materialist point of view. How can one not want to explore or probe reality? So odd.

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by kiki » Mon May 03, 2021 11:47 pm

Any particular researchers or websites you would recommend to explore NDEs?
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by Webwanderer » Tue May 04, 2021 12:56 am

Kiki, not sure if you're asking me or RT, but I'll give you a couple I like and maybe RT will offer as well.

I like a lot of different sources. Too many to list. One of my favorites as a pure researcher is Peter Fenwick. There are lots of YouTubes and I believe he has his own website.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiEYQyUjAQA

For larger information sites I suggest IANDS

https://www.iands.org/

And a similar site: NDERF

https://www.nderf.org/

Both are reference points for the who's who in the NDE (TDE) research and information community.

WW

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by kiki » Tue May 04, 2021 2:07 am

Thanks, WW. The post was directed to both of you.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by runstrails » Tue May 04, 2021 2:37 am

Thanks WW!
I'm not as familiar with NDEs Kiki--so I defer to WW on this :D.

I've personally never had an OBE or NDE--however, when I sit in meditation or contemplation on my true nature or when I had a deep experience of (non-local) consciousness it has felt like peace, contentment, unconditional love, unconditional absence. And it is interesting to me that is also how many NDEs are described (including in the video).

What does the sense of your true self feel like to you? How would you describe it? Just curious. Would love to hear from any one who cares to answer.

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by kiki » Tue May 04, 2021 4:10 am

What does the sense of your true self feel like to you? How would you describe it?
Ever present and undeniable stillness, silence and peace no matter what the outer circumstances are. Even during times of frustration or even anger those remain, and when they do arise there is the simultaneous noticing of the underlying 'true self'. Consequently, disturbing moods or emotions drop away very quickly.

Most of the time there are very few thoughts arising, and those that do are almost 'whisper-like' and very fleeting. When I close my eyes there is no 'center' present, as if the physical body isn't even there, just empty aliveness with the attendant SSP. If thoughts arise very often they die out before they fully form, like a ripple on water that just fades back into nothingness on a still pond. With eyes open, whether in activity or just sitting doing nothing or even watching TV there is the 'hearing' of silence within the physical form, a sense of stillness within the body even if the body is moving and a feeling of deep peace and contentedness.
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My first OBE (although I didn't get completely out of my body) happened when I was in college in 1973, just a couple of days after learning Transcendental Meditation. I don't know why it happened, but while lying in bed waiting for sleep to come suddenly something seemed different. I looked down my body and noticed my feet in my upper chest. I was so startled that I snapped back into my physical body. I had no idea what had happened because I had never heard of OBEs. Clearly, some kind non-physical body was moving out of my physical form.

Occasionally over the years since then something similar has happened spontaneously at night time where a body part, usually an arm or a leg, seems to separate from the physical body. However, I've never been able to completely detach from it.
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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by Webwanderer » Tue May 04, 2021 6:59 am

What does the sense of your true self feel like to you? How would you describe it? Just curious.
I'm most aware of my 'true self' when I'm in those marvelous moments of what could only be described as 'clarity of being'. There is a sense of both presence and depth. It's funny. I don't usually think of it in terms of true self. I just enjoy the experience of presence... free of thought. Thanks for the question. Maybe I'll add 'true self' as a context to that presence.

WW

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by runstrails » Wed May 05, 2021 1:23 am

Thank you Kiki and WW for your wonderful replies. What you both say matches my experience too. There is a deep sense of peace and contentment and a clarity of vision. I still probably have more thoughts than you both but I try to focus them inwards on contemplating my true nature.

I was struck by how our 'ordinary' experiences of our true nature/higher self seem to resonate well with the accounts of the 'extraordinary' experiences that we hear from NDEs. Seems to validate both the NDEs and our experiences (not that either needs any validation of course). The truth is the truth after all :D.

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by Webwanderer » Wed May 05, 2021 6:13 am

So here is something to ponder. When in those moments of thought-free presence, what role would you say context plays? It seems to me that regardless of being thought-free in those moments of presence, how 'clear' is it actually? It may well be free of thought, but are those moments free of beliefs that create the context that is our world view? And is it even possible to be free of such context?

WW

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by runstrails » Wed May 05, 2021 11:15 pm

WW wrote: It may well be free of thought, but are those moments free of beliefs that create the context that is our world view? And is it even possible to be free of such context?
Good question. I don't believe it it's possible to be free of context altogether ---but it's possible to replace our everyday samsaric/materialistic/little me vision with a greater vision i.e., my true nature is non-local, eternal, unaffected, limitless consciousness and live life from that larger, inclusive vision.

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by Sighclone » Wed May 12, 2021 5:22 am

Nanci Danison (nancidanison.com) remains my favorite for NDEs.

"Even during times of frustration or even anger those remain, and when they do arise there is the simultaneous noticing of the underlying 'true self'. Consequently, disturbing moods or emotions drop away very quickly."

I am not immune to frustration. Stuff happens every day that is "suboptimal" by some internal measuring device probably linked to my conditioning / ego. I confess to have spoken a profanity or two to my computer screen...maybe three. But what kiki says also occurs...while the frustration arises, so also does a distance from it. I'm working on noticing that distance, which is, functionally sort of a "return to Presence" in that moment.

There was a period when I did not have many thoughts, but these days, I have more. I guess it's fair to say I'm re-entering maya...perhaps like the tenth bull of Zen? But really for me, it's actually a balancing -- I tend towards the jnani rather than bhakti and this seems like a period where I'm letting devotion enter more. No OOBs, really. My work world is quite small (a few clients, a few phone calls, some research and some typing). My poor wife is struggling with anxiety and depression - has been since the death of her son...and to a degree, all her life - serious developmental trauma. She has a meditation routine and several support groups, and an excellent counselor...it's been very hard for her...for seven years. But for me, that still, vital Home is never far away. I try to be Present for her and with her...and she is grateful.

On a related subject, I recommend reading "Journey of Your Soul" by Shepherd Hoodwin. He claims to channel an entity named Michael. My recommendation is not an endorsement, just a suggestion. I did have a past-life regression by a Michael Newton-trained hypnotist, I've read many books about re-incarnation, and I've consulted a medium twice who had information utterly unavailable to her from any kind of research she might have done. (Willa White.) The whole concept of "something specific" surviving the death experience is pretty compelling. There is a video somewhere of ET answering a question in which he also states that "something survives."

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce
The present holds the complete sum of existence - Whitehead

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by runstrails » Thu May 13, 2021 5:40 pm

Andy wrote: Even during times of frustration or even anger those remain, and when they do arise there is the simultaneous noticing of the underlying 'true self'. Consequently, disturbing moods or emotions drop away very quickly."
Great quote from Nanci D! It's similar to the definition of sahaja samadhi in traditional vedanta. As is your experience Andy. I resonate with it a lot.

I heard a great quote once--something to the effect of "think of self-knowledge like a fire engine in your heart---it sits quietly there but its always available and ready to put out fires (in our everyday lives) when we need it".

Yes, the subtle body survives death and gets reincarnated into another gross body.

I'll check out 'journey of the soul'.

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Re: NDEs and Vedanta

Post by runstrails » Thu May 13, 2021 6:13 pm

Another thought that I had (per my reply above):

The sahaja (everyday) samadhi feels like a sense of inner freedom or inner leisure. One remains actively engaged in life, however there is a clear vision that one is playing a role and that one's true self is experienced as the every present stillness/awareness simultaneously. This inner freedom is so liberating since it really does not matter what one does--one can do, not do, or do differently for any decision or action that needs to be taken in life.

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