Will science ever be able to study the spirit? What is really happening in the body…..and the brain, when people report extraordinary spiritual experiences? Some of the most amazing and inspiring spiritual discoveries take place when science takes a hard look at the extraordinary experiences that ordinary people report on an everyday basis…..from looking at what happens in the bodies people who are brought back from the brink of death, to studying the brains of meditating monks and even watching what changes in the brain of mediums who are communicating with the dead, there is MUCH overlap between how we experience this world, and what lies beyond.
Here is a great article on some of the ways science is now studying the brains of people who can have out of body experiences at will, and some of the unusual things they’re discovering about the nature of reality along the way. Check out the whole thing at the link below the jump.
Year 2014 has been especially crucial for the study because a 24-year-old student has finally been able to prove to doctors that ‘traveling outside the body’ is indeed possible, at will.
Researchers at the University of Ottawa — Andra Smith and Claude Messier — experimented on a young psychology graduate who claimed she could just “float away”, before going into a full, natural sleep and that she’s been “travelling” since she was a toddler. What the researchers found was interesting and dealt with a much-debated notion — we’re all born with this ability.
Through the use of a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner, the two experts were able to study the student’s ability and have since classified it under “extra-corporeal experiences”, in which there’s a “deactivation of vision”, following which the left side of the brain kicks in with “kinesthetic imagery” (mental representations of bodily movement) allowing people to feel as if they’re floating.
This is what the two stunned Ottawa researchers wrote in the journal, Frontiers in Human Neuroscience: “The participant described her experience as one she began performing as a child when bored with ‘sleep time’ at pre-school. She continued to perform this experience as she grew up assuming that ‘everyone could do it’. She appeared surprised that not everyone could experience this.”
The two experts have also agreed that the Canadian student is the first human being ever studied to have “an ECE on demand without any brain abnormalities”.
Which now takes us to an individual who has been having such experiences since he was 12 and who once predicted a terror attack in London, five days before the event itself — world-renowned specialist in OBEs (out of body experience) and parapsychology Graham Nicholls.
“It was during a workshop on OBE, that I suddenly felt this massive emotional weight crushing me, and seconds later, I found myself standing in the middle of London, maybe two or three feet from the ground. Then it happened — the blast, triggering chaos and confusion. I was right in the middle of it and when I was coaxed back by those attending the workshop and I told them about what I had seen, the room went utterly quiet. Many seemed to agree that it was a premonition.”
It was. Five days later, on April 30, 1999, two people were killed and 30 hurt in the nail bomb blast that had gone off inside a pub in Soho, close to where Graham’s ‘projection’ was standing. It was this blast that he had seen and his description of the event five days ago strangely matched those from the live TV images of the blast site.
Nicholls has since tried hard to investigate what happened during that workshop. “All of us possess an ability, an awareness and a response to natural stimuli, but much of this is currently within the box that’s modern science. We have to see these abilities without dogma, without shackles of religion, traditional beliefs etc. Having an open mind to discover the abilities of the brain is key,” says Nicholls.
Currently in Estonia, Nicholls takes us back to his first OBE, at age 12. “I found myself maybe 500 metres from my physical body. I was vertical, hovering… surrounded by this light and being held by this energy around me. I have been having these OBEs… they’re more regular now since I seem to have perfected a technique to achieve them.