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Dying

Dying

 

I have made a distinction between near death experiences and dying because the process and experiences are different. 

 A near death experience is as it sounds – the person does not actually die, but comes close to dying, and is revived or recovers for example.  But dying means just as it sounds, the person is dying – and dies.  So they see heaven shortly before they get there and are able to give some indication of what they see or what it is like.

All the observations related to this category are thus those given by people who died shortly after giving some intimation of what they experienced.

There is a characteristic pattern that seems to emerge for those who die.  This pattern is unrelated and unaffected by religious beliefs, nationality, language, age, sex or anything else you can think of that is a divider and not a uniter.  It also is unrelated to one’s own self assessment of one’s moral standing.  You may believe yourself to be a fine upstanding citizen, it makes not a jot of difference – you get treated exactly the same as those you might have condemned for their immoral life  - morals are a man made thing – they have no place in the spiritual world.

 Unlike the near death experience there appear to be no tunnels and no past life reviews, which rather indicates that the two are very different.  This does not mean that there are no tunnels on death, simply that dying as a process, if left to take its natural course,  produces no tunnels.

The visit of the spirits 

 

Shortly before the person dies they receive a visit from one or more spirit helpers.  Generally speaking these either appear to be the spirits of relatives or people who have died [in other words their appearance is that of someone known or related to the person] or are recognisable caricatures of religious figures. 

I have chosen the words carefully here because it is very clear that the images are manufactured – as if the composer has constructed the image that will be the most familiar to us.  Hence a grandpa or grandma will not look as they did on death, they will have the look of the time they were the most loved by the person and be ‘wearing’ familiar comforting clothes.  Some people have ‘seen’ the image of a lover killed in a road accident and the image with which they were presented always looks like the person at their most lovable -  certainly not at the point of their death.

At the Hour of death – Dr Karlis Osis and Dr Erlendur Haraldsson
In our data of terminal patients 83% of the human figures were relatives and nearly all of those – 90% - whose relationship to the patient was identified were close ones – mother father, spouse, siblings, offspring.

At the Hour of death – Dr Karlis Osis and Dr Erlendur Haraldsson
In a very soft voice and with a smile on her face, she had an endearing conversation about how much she loved him [her husband] how much she missed him, and how she knew she would join him.  She said, ‘It won’t be long now before I’ll be with you’.  Reaching out as if she felt his hand ‘You look well and well-cared for’.

Note here that I am not saying it isn’t the spirit of the person, just that the image is a manufactured one and as such we don’t really know who it is.  It may be them it may not be, it probably depends a lot on where their spirit has gone next.

Where a religious figure is seen, the beings have an appearance which mimics in some way a person’s beliefs of how the religious figure should look.  Thus if a person thinks Jesus had long hair and a white robe and a beard this is what they see.  It is clear from the observations that the appearances are constructed, as ‘Jesus’ has been seen without a beard, with a beard, with short hair, with long hair, with robes, without robes and so on.  Blue eyes, brown eyes, dark hair, fair hair.  It is extremely rare – I have come across no observations, - for the spirit to identify itself, thus the spirit helper could be any number of spirits, but the composer is providing the person with the image that is the most comforting and presumably the deeply religious with strong belief systems find the most comfort in a view of their religious leader – Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, Shiva etc.

In studies done by Osis and Haraldsson the visions were overwhelmingly dominated   -  4 to 1  - by these two types of being.  Where the vision was of a deceased human being, the vast majority were deceased close relatives.  Otherwise they might be friends or former lovers.  Even not very religious people occasionally see religious figures -  including atheists – so who you see if not entirely dependent on your belief system.

It needs to be remembered here that we are dealing – allegorically speaking – with a software world – in effect there may every reason to believe that the spirit helper exists, but it won’t have a physical appearance because it is – as are all spirits – disembodied – having no body.  This is a virtual world.  Thus the spirit helper may or may not be who the person thinks – it actually doesn’t matter at that stage, because the objective is to comfort and help.

The purpose 

 

The purpose of the visit is that they have come to act as guides to the person’s spirit in transition to their ‘after-life’.  In the surveys of Osis and Haraldsson, the nearer the person was to death, the more likely it was that their role of guide and psychopomp was made very clear in the vision.  They held out their hand or even stated via mind transfer that that was their role. 

At the Hour of death – Dr Karlis Osis and Dr Erlendur Haraldsson
The mother saw that her child seemed to be sinking and called us nurses.  She said that the child had just told her she had seen an angel who had taken her by the hand – and she was gone – died immediately.  That just astounded us because there was no sign of imminent death.  She was so calm, serene – and yet so close to death!

One doctor in the Osis/Haraldsson survey stated that he thought the very fact the apparitions made it clear what they had come for tended to hasten death.  In their American survey 87% of those who were given a vision of a very obvious  ‘take-away’ guide died within 60 minutes!

We have to weigh this opinion, however, against the fact that encounters with these messengers from another world seem to be so calming and uplifting that in general, the person seems quite happy to go. Thus it may ‘hasten death’, but only because death seems after the visit to hold no fears.

Perhaps even more surprisingly, the same acceptance and contentment can still be present when the person is not expecting to die.  So the spirits turn up even to people who are not expecting them, leading to the conclusion that they probably are true spirits and not wholly manufactured by the composer.

There may be quite a subtle dividing line here, however.  If apparitions appear to a person quite some time before the person dies, they may well be entirely a construction of the composer – there solely to give comfort – and not be spirits at all.  Apparitions that do not appear to interact with the person but simply show themselves as in a film, are probably simply constructed comforting images.

In effect the purpose of the visit is as much to reassure and comfort as much as guide.  Where a person does not want to go, the reason appears to be that a religious figure has turned up whom the person fears.  In essence whether you have a peaceful death may [if you have a belief system of this sort] depend on the frightening nature of your religion and what you have been taught to expect. 

Death can be a serene experience

 

Whether the person was racked with pain or turmoil or fear before the visit, they tend to be filled with peace, serenity even elation shortly before death.  Occasionally it cannot be known whether the person had a visit or not, as they were not capable of communicating, but the sudden change in their mien – the relaxing of face muscles, the change of expression to one of peace, indicated that this sense of peace was pretty well universal. 

At the Hour of death – Dr Karlis Osis and Dr Erlendur Haraldsson
A female patient in her forties – who was suffering from cancer and during the last preceding days had been depressed and drowsy, though always clear – suddenly looked very happy.  A joyful expression remained on her face until she died five minutes later.

If any form of negative emotion was felt it was usually because of the religious element again – their religion had convinced them of the existence of hell or to fear the spirit come to collect them.  In effect negativity is a religious effect.

Drugs can also produce a less than serene ending.  There is one observation where a man peacefully dying is given Naloxone and dies in terror.

Environmental visions

 

Occasionally the person is led or transported to a beautiful place – a garden, lovely landscape, gentle pastures, serene valleys [the valleys of shadowless death – where there are no shadows].  This tended to heighten the sense of peace and serenity and in people with some remnants of fear remaining tended to help to alleviate that fear.

An after thought

If we ever get back to a situation where living shamans roam the spiritual world looking around to help the lost spirit without a guide needing to find their way in the spiritual world, then not only may the dying see angels, intelligences, and disembodied souls they may see the naked glowing honey coloured body of a living shaman too, his or her long hair flowing along in the non existent breeze.

References

All the paintings on this page are by Vladimir Kush.

Observations

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