Final Passages: Videos on line

4 May





1) The forum opened with a presentation from Dr Pim van Lommel called Non-local Consciousness: An Explanatory Model for The Near-Death Experience

The presentation discussed how the current scientific understanding of consciousness is too limited and how NDE research is leading to the conclusion that consciousness may survive after physical death.

2) The second presentation was given by myself Research on Near-Death Experiences (NDE): The Findings and a Case from an Intensive Care Prospective Study

I described the research that I undertook in the intensive care unit where I worked as a nurse. I presented some of the cases I came across along with the fascinating case of Patient 10 where I was present while he had his NDE during a time when he was deeply unconscious.

3) This was an extremely important part of the conference where neurosurgeon Dr Eben Alexander iii described his NDE to the audience and was interviewed by Steve Paulson. What makes this NDE so interesting is that Dr Alexander is a neurosurgeon who has a wide knowledge of brain function and many years experience of treating neurosurgical patients. Since his NDE his worldview has been drastically changed and whereas previously he would have explained these experiences away as being due to drugs given etc, he now has a very different understanding of them.

Interestingly, despite our medical and nursing backgrounds we all agreed that our current science is too limited to explain consciousness. As a result of the research that Dr van Lommel has conducted and that undertaken by myself we both believe that consciousness is not located or created by the brain. Dr Alexander has similar conclusions due to his direct experience of undergoing a profound NDE.

4) The afternoon session began with a presentation by Dr Raymond Moody Shared Death Experiences: An Analysis of Characteristics and Implications. He described shared death experiences where people who are sitting at the bedside or are closely connected to the dying person may embrak on part of their transition into death. There was also an interesting discussion on changing our philosophical concepts of death which would lead to a greater understanding.


5) The final presentation of the day was by Dr Eric Weiss A New Philosophy of Physics, NDEs and Life After Death. Dr Weiss’ deep thinking and study of such luminaries as Sri Aurobindo and Alfred North Whitehead have influenced his new understanding of consciousness which is in accord with post-modern physics and in which he believes that NDEs and life after death become explicable.

6) A panel discussion with all of the presenters was moderated by Steve Paulson and he and audience members were able to ask questions leading on from the days presentations.

Everyone relaxed at dinner where the presenters each hosted tables so that audience members could have bigger discussions regarding their work.


Keep following the blog for DAY 2

I encourage everyone to watch the videos:

8 Responses to “Final Passages: Videos on line”

  1. John Schofield May 4, 2012 at 10:49 pm #

    Dear Dr. Sartori, An excellent presentation, in beautiful surroundings, and in the company of such luminaries in the field (of whom you are certainly one by now!) A privilege to participate by proxy !

    • Dr Penny Sartori May 5, 2012 at 10:51 am #

      Thank you John, it was a real honour to be there and a fantastic experience. The whole conference was very thought provoking, I hope a wide audience get to view the videos and the presentations can make us think and open us all up to new ways of understanding consciousness and looking at the world.

  2. John Schofield May 5, 2012 at 11:34 am #

    P.S. I was a wholly lay and non-participating member of The Scientific and Medical Network for many years. At age 79, I have a visual problem which makes it necessary to use Windows software to assist in reading. Doesn’t faze me – so much to be grateful for. My wife died scarcely 3 months back after a life of much suffering – bi-polar condition, and ataxia for the last five years or
    so. I have much solace from all that I have learned concerning nde; and access to your work leads
    me to hope that I may do some justice to so many of the thhings said, and quoted, in the Madison Conference.

    • Dr Penny Sartori May 5, 2012 at 12:28 pm #

      Thank you for your lovely comments John. Sorry to hear of your wife’s passing, it is very hard coming to terms with such loss as I know through my own loss of family members and friends. I am so glad my work has helped you in some way. Undertaking my research has taught me so much and has opened me up to things I never had considered before. What I have gained from my work and the work of others in this field has made me live my life in a totally different way. It is nice to pass on what I have learned so that others may benefit too – that’s what makes it even more worthwhile.

  3. Dawn May 5, 2012 at 2:35 pm #

    Thank you for your post Dr. Penny! I was just able to watch the presentation by Dr. Eben Alexander. His experience was so interesting given his background and medical training. What often interests me in the accounts of NDE’s is how people may interpret their experience and how each account may vary so much from one from one person to the next. Dr. Alexander offered much clarity in the states of consciousness he experienced during his coma from the “earth worm eye view” to the much more heightened state at “the core.” I think this is important in understanding the various states people may encounter during their NDE.
    When he answered Dr. Moody’s question as to who the girl was, I even teared up! What a great presentation. With such a great panel of speakers, I really look forward to viewing the rest!

    • Dr Penny Sartori May 6, 2012 at 11:45 am #

      HI Dawn, I’m glad you enojoyed Dr Alexander’s interview, it really was very special to be there while he spoke about his experience. It is very unusual for a medical person, especially a neurosurgeon to speak about NDEs. I think it is highlighting a change in the way in which we view consciousness.

      Yes, when Dr Alexander answered Dr Moody’s question, about who the little girl was, I too teared up as did many people in the audience – even the men! It was a very emotive interview. I was so lucky to be there.

  4. Max_B May 5, 2012 at 7:20 pm #

    Nice to see you adding to your blog again Penny. I’ve been so busy with my business that I’ve had no time to think about the subject of consciousness for a while, consequently I feel very rusty, infact I can’t quite remember exactly what my ideas were!

    I think these interesting videos will give me an opportunity to bring myself up to speed again. I’ve watched Pim’s presentation so far, it was a very good summary, but I’m not completely convinced by his conclusions.

    • Dr Penny Sartori May 6, 2012 at 11:51 am #

      Hi Max, I’m glad the blog has rekindled your interest in consciousness again. The conference has really motivated me to write more for the blog. The presentations were fascinating. Prof Eric Weiss’s presentation was very deep and shows how his study of Alfred North Whitehead and Sri Auribindo have influenced his views on consciousness. He presented very deep concepts in a way that I was able to follow without being familiar with these works, it was very interesting.

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