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Near Death Experiencers are a subgroup of people who come close to physical death or may have recovered after being declared dead and as a group display common features in their conscious experience of this event and a consequent transformative process.

It is estimated that on average 8 years of a transformative process are needed for an individual after a NDE to be mentally healthy.

A Near Death Experience is not associated with a mental disorder.

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Negative Aspects


Following NDEs people have altered beliefs, attitudes and behaviours. Factors influencing this transformation include:

  • Personality characteristics
  • Cultural factors
  • Support from family, friends and health practitioners

And exclude:

  • Age
  • Sex
  • Level of education

Initially, mostly the transformation process has negative aspects leading to depression, loneliness and a strong desire to return to the feelings of unconditional love and/or peace and no more suffering.

Attempts to speak about a NDE are rejected by 50% of family members, 25% of friends, 30% of nurses, 85% of doctors and 50% of psychiatrist. (Sutherland, 1992)

Many patients experience an inability to share their NDE. It leads to:

  • feelings of isolation;
  • a fear of being ridiculed or rejected;
  • problems with integration of the new personality with family and friends;
  • an inability to put into words the meaning and consequences of a NDE;
  • difficulties in adhering to old role­patterns;
  • difficulties accepting the limitations and impairments in human associations;
  • and sometimes absurd expectations from family and friends in regards to people after a NDE because of info presented in popular magazines and TV­programs.

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Positive Aspects


It is estimated that on average 8 years of the transformative process are needed for an individual after a NDE to start experiencing positive aspects. These aspects are:

  • Acceptance of self
  • Increased compassion
  • Increased value and appreciation of life
  • Loss of fear of death, belief in life after death
  • Increased religious sentiments and a concurrent decreased interest in organised religion
  • Physical changes:
    • Hyperesthesia
    • Synesthesia
    • Heightened sensitivity for alcohol
    • Faster healing, more youthful appearance
  • Electromagnetic phenomena:
    • lights drop out
    • computers crash
    • cars won't start etc.
  • Heightened Intuition:
    • Clairvoyance
    • Telepathic capacities
    • Premonitions
    • Intuition
    • Remembering dreams/ Lucid dreaming
    • OBE
    • Healing powers
    • Apparitions



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Sutherland C. (1990) Changes in religious beliefs, attitudes, and practice following near­death experiences. Journal of Near Death Studies 9, 21­31.

Sutherland, Cherie Olga. A very different way: A sociological investigation of life after a near­death experience ProQuest Dissertations and Theses 01/01/1992. Vol.0626,Iss.0423;p.1

Sutherland C. Near­death experience by proxy: A case study . Journal of Near­Death Studies June, 1990. Vol.8,Iss.4;

Pim van Lommel , 2010, Endless Consciousness, A Scientific Approach to the Near­Death Experience, Harper Collins USA (not available in English until 2010)

Penny Sartori, 2008, The Near­Death Experiences of Hospitalized Intensive Care Patients: A Five Year Clinical Study, The Edwin Mellen Press

Dr Bruce Greyson has written an abundance of articles on the subject of NDE for leading medical journals, including Journal of Scientific Exploration, Journal of the American Medical Association, and American Journal of Psychiatry.

Dr Raymond Moody's books:

  • Life After Life
  • Life After Loss
  • Reunions: Visionary Encounters With Departed Loved Ones
  • Reflections On Life After Life

Dr Kenneth Ring's books:

  • Mindsight
  • Lessons from the Light
  • Heading toward Omega
  • Life at Death
  • The Omega Project

Dr Michael Sabom's books:

  • Recollections of Death
  • Light and Death

PMH Atwater's books:

  • Coming Back to Life
  • Beyond the Light
  • Future Memory
  • Children of the New Millennium
  • The Complete Idiot's Guide to Near­ Death Experiences
  • The New Children and Near­Death Experiences
  • We Live Forever
  • Beyond the Indigo Children
  • The Big Book of Near­Death Experiences

Susan Blackmore's book:

  • Dying to Live

The Journal of Near Death Studies is the only peer­reviewed scholarly journal (ISSN 0891­4494) devoted exclusively to the field of near­death studies. It is cross­disciplinary and published quarterly.

Other sources for publications are:

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