skip to Main Content
Near Death Basic Experience

The Science behind Near-death experiences or NDEs

near death basic experience

What is a near-death experience?

Personal experiences associated with impending death have been reported throughout human history with certain characteristics being transcendental accross, centuries, continents and cultures.

These near-death experiences range and manifest through varying symptomology and experiences, but interestingly, NDEs have seen strikingly similar characteristics reported by countless thousands in scientific medical journals.

near death

The most commonly reported Near-Death Experiences include:

1. Detachment from the body or feelings of levitation (or hovering)
2. The presence of a light, or the presence of a tunnel and light
3. A literal awareness of being dead
4. A sensation of total love and well-being
5. Making a lucid decision to return to one’s body, sometimes accompanied by a reluctance to return.
6. Visions of the future

Clinical Oncology News shared,

Bruce Greyson, MD, a professor at the University of Virginia School of Medicine, in Charlottesville, and Nancy Evans Bush, MA, a clinical researcher who is president emerita of the International Association for Near-Death Studies, report that approximately 20% of people who have an NDE undergo a dark or distressing NDE that has a hellish or perdition theme. From its very onset, the person perceives a malevolent universe that is the antipode of the positive or redemptive NDE. These people especially need physicians’ help after such an event. They often spend the rest of their lives using three adaptive patterns: 1) becoming hyperreligious and “getting right with God”; 2) trying to convince themselves that they imagined the distressing NDE and it was not real; or 3) engaging in long-term psychotherapy.


In the video below, Dr. Bruce Greyson, a faculty member at the UVA Division of Perceptual Studies, presents his research on near-death experiences.

The UVA DOPS faculty gathered to offer public lectures at the Boston Museum of Science on September 17th, 2016, as part of a special one day event, Do We Survive Death? A Look at the Evidence.

The Division of Perceptual Studies (DOPS) is a research unit within the Department of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences at the University of Virginia Health System. The research faculty of the Division are known internationally for their expertise and research integrity in the investigation of phenomena relevant to the nature of consciousness and its relationship to the physical world.