New Material: Group NDE
In many of the groups I have been in for discussion during class, we have brought up the notion that we cannot experimentally test whether or not Near Death Experiences are true. I thought that a good alternative to experiments to test NDEs would be if multiple people had the same experience. Thus, I began to look for material depicting group NDEs; I found two main sources that spoke of the phenomenon of group NDEs. The first was a section of the website www.near-death.com. This website shared many stories of near-death experiences. On their group NDE page, http://www.near-death.com/group.html, the website explains what group NDEs are, and presents two examples. The website cites P.M.H. Atwater for their definition of a group NDE:
These are rare, but they do occur. With this kind, a whole group of people simultaneously seems to experience the same or similar episode. What makes these so spectacular and challenging is that all or most of the experiencers see each other actually leave their bodies as it happens, then dialogue with each other and share messages and observations while still experiencing the near-death state. Their separate reports afterward either match or nearly so. Reports like these emerge most often from events of a harrowing nature that involve a lot of people… Shared and group experiences imply that no matter how sure we are that near-death states mean this or that, and are the result of whatever, no single idea, theory, or pat answer can explain them. Even clues from the powerful patterning that researchers like myself have identified, fail to explain all aspects of the phenomenon.
Following this definition, two stories of group NDEs are presented. I further researched P.M.H. Atwater and came across a book of hers entitled The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Near-Death Experiences. This book provides great, simple to understand information about NDEs, and is available online through the Mirlyn catalogue.