The-Tibetan-Book-of-Living-and-Dying

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The-Tibetan-Book-of-Living-and-Dying

THE NEAR-DEATH EXPERIENCE: A STAIRCASE TO HEAVEN? 339/ feel that just understanding near-death experiences will be ourfirst step at healing the great division between science and religionthat started with Isaac Newton almost three hundred years ago.Educating physicians, nurses, and ourselves about what peopleexperience in those final hours will shatter our prejudices about theways we think about medicine and life. 41In other words the very advance in medical technology issimultaneously providing the means to revolutionize itself.Melvin Morse says:/ find it ironic that it is our medical technology that has led to thisplethora of near-death experiences.... There have been near-deathexperiences throughout the centuries, but it has only been in thelast twenty years that we have had the technology to resuscitatepatients. Now they are telling us about their experiences, so let'slisten to them. This to me is a challenge for our society... Neardeathexperiences, to my mind, are a natural, psychological processassociated with dying. I'm going to boldly predict if we can reintegratethis knowledge into our society, not only will it help withdying patients, but it will help society as a whole. I see medicinetoday as being devoid of spirit.... There is no reason why technologyand the spirit cannot exist side by side. 42One of the reasons I have written this book is to show Ibelieve what Melvin Morse says is possible: Technology andthe spirit can and must exist side by side, if our fullest humanpotential is to be developed. Wouldn't a complete, and completelyuseful, human science have the courage to embraceand explore the facts of the mystical, the facts of death anddying as revealed in the near-death experience and in thisbook?Bruce Greyson, one of the leading figures in near-deathresearch, says:Science must try to explain the near-death experience becausetherein lies the key to its own growth.... History tells us that onlyin trying to explain phenomena which are currently beyond ourreach will science develop new methods. I believe the near-deathexperience is one of the puzzles that just might force scientists todevelop a new scientific method, one that will incorporate allsources of knowledge, not only logical deduction of the intellect, andempirical observation of the physical, but direct experience of themystical as well. 43

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