Embraced by the Light: Journeys to the ‘Other Side’

Embraced Light

By REV. GARY W. DUNCAN, M.S., M.A., CSM/OCP— Ancient religions including the shamanic traditions are replete with myths regarding the dying and death process. It was believed within these traditions that when a person died their soul was escorted into the afterlife by a special being called a psychopomp. In Greek psycho means soul and pomp means guide, so a psychopomp is a guide of the soul. In our modern world, the psychopomp tradition has changed to not only helping the dying, but also … [Read more...]

The Life After Death Project: Interview With Paul Davids

Paul-Davids

PAUL DAVIDS is the author of widely-released books and acclaimed writer and director of highly original films including the controversial 2008 documentary film Jesus In India, discussed by Len Kasten in New Dawn Special Issue Vol 6 No 3. He is a leading expert on the history of science fiction cinema and the Hollywood connection to extraterrestrial-related phenomena. Davids was executive producer and co-writer of the Showtime film Roswell, starring Martin Sheen and Kyle MacLachlan. Paul … [Read more...]

Is the Afterlife What We Think It Is? A Challenge from Near-Death Studies

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By P.M.H. Atwater, L.H.D. There are millions of stories now of near-death experiences from around the world; each a snippet, a teaser, of what appears to exist on the other side of death. No other human drama carries quite the power this phenomenon does to unmask traditions of a “grim reaper,” and reveal instead an aliveness that continues after our bodies take their last breath and our brains cease to function. This aliveness we call an “afterlife,” because in most cases, what near-death … [Read more...]

Ouija: How the Spirit World Helped a Pulitzer Prize-Winning Poet

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By John Chambers Sois sage dear heart & set my teachings down  If you do not your world will be undone & heaven itself turn to one grinning skull.1 These lines appear in the poem “The Will,” by James Merrill (1926-1995), arguably the greatest American poet of the latter half of the twentieth century. Critics rarely mention that for most of his life Merrill was deeply involved with discarnate entities on a Ouija board, and that the poet’s 550-page masterpiece, The Changing Light at … [Read more...]

Cheating the Ferryman: A New Paradigm of Existence?

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By ANTHONY PEAKE — What happens when we die? This is the ultimate question and one that we still have no real answer. From the first few moments that man became a self-aware being he has pondered upon this mystery. Every culture has attempted an explanation, and it is reasonable to conclude that all religions exist to give an account of what happens at that moment and, more importantly, where does the person go after their body dies. One of the most enduring myths is that of the Ancient … [Read more...]

What Lives On? Investigating Life After Death

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By ROBERT M. SCHOCH, Ph.D. — Do we survive the death of our physical bodies? Is there such a thing as a postmortem continuation of the individual? If there is survival, what survives? Does everyone survive? What does it even mean to survive? Answers to these questions are central to the dogmas of many religions. These same issues are amongst the most refractory when addressed using the techniques of scientific inquiry: data gathering, hypothesis formulation and testing, logical analyses. … [Read more...]