The Human Consciousness Project
By Else Byskov, author
According to our spiritual masters death holds the greatest possible surprise to man: there is no death. This, however, is exceedingly difficult to accept by the modern, intellectual individual, who wants scientific proof for the claim. Consequently many people living in the western world today believe that we only live one life. They are convinced that our consciousness will simply cease to exist when we have drawn our last breath. Very few people believe that we will ever be able to come up with conclusive proof that our consciousness survives the death of the physical body. They think that this is just superstition or wishful thinking.
However, there is a growing body of evidence in the empirical world that does not fit with the one-life theory. Among this evidence the near-death experience is probably the best known, and this intriguing phenomenon has been the subject of scientific scrutiny for various decades now. To begin with those who had experienced being alive outside their body were met with disbelief and sometimes ridicule, but now they are finally being taken seriously. A large scale research project named “The Human Consciousness Project” has been established by the Nour Foundation, which is a public charitable and nongovernmental organization in special consultative status to the United Nations. The project involves leading scientists in the field of consciousness studies from the USA, Europe and Canada, and its aim is to come up with conclusive evidence that our consciousness can exist independently of the physical body.
This is a controversial idea, as the general view has been that our consciousness is just a by-product of electrochemical activity within the brain. This has been the accepted view, notwithstanding the lack of any scientific evidence or even a plausible biological explanation as to how the brain would lead to the development of mind and consciousness. Nevertheless, the generally accepted view is that consciousness is a by-product of brain activity. However, this view is now being questioned because it seems that consciousness can exist independently of the brain. Consciousness could be a self-sustained unit and this assumption is based on the observation that many near-death experiencers have been able to observe objects and goings-on in an out-of-body state. In spite of the fact that their body was declared clinically dead on the operating table, they were able to observe what was going on in the space surrounding the body. After resuscitation the near-death experiencer would for instance point out that she had observed a particular object on top of a cupboard in an adjacent room. Or she would know what her family members waiting in the corridor were wearing. When the medical staff went to check, they did indeed find the exact object in the described location or the precise garment worn by the family member. The patient had been able to see this while she was flat on her back with no vital signs.
Because we are now able to resuscitate people with cardiac arrest, there is a growing number of people who report lucid, well-structured thought processes while their body is clinically dead. It has been established that 10-12 % of all people who have been resuscitated following a cardiac arrest report that they were alive in a body of a much lighter and finer type of matter than their physical body. They found that the experience of being dead was exceedingly pleasant – so pleasant that they were very reluctant to return to the body.
It is the observation of particular objects placed above the range of normal vision that is key in the “Human Consciousness Project”. The idea is to place various objects in and around resuscitation rooms in places that are only visible from just below the ceiling. If the person with cardiac arrest is able to observe and describe the object, then this indicates that consciousness survives the death of the body and that it can exist independently of the physical organism. It will eventually mean that we will be taking the first steps towards scientifically proving that death is an illusion.
This is, of course, what our spiritual masters have been telling us all along, but as many modern people are more comfortable with the scientific approach, it seems that we are getting closer to the point where spirituality and science can finally link up and join hands.
The near-death experience is not the only type of evidence for the survival of consciousness. Other important fields of research are: children that remember past lives, after death communication, regression therapy, death bed visions and the afterlife experiments. The evidence for life after death is growing every day whereas there is no evidence for the one-life theory. Today we can say that those who claim that death is the end of life are the true believers. They believe in something that cannot be proved and that has no support in the empirical world. Nobody has ever been able to prove that our consciousness is extinguished at death. On the other hand the evidence pointing out that death is not the end grows on a daily basis.
The key to an understanding of how consciousness can survive the death of the body is to realize that it is not only physical matter that is real. Matter also exists in the shape of invisible rays and waves. These have been defined in the electromagnetic spectrum, and it is this type of matter that we make use of when we talk on our mobile phones, receive television, radio and wireless internet. As we make use of this type of matter every day it is pointless to claim that invisible matter does not exist. It is also in this type of ray-formed matter that our consciousness exists in the shape of an energy field that sits in and around the physical body. The field holds our “I” and all the characteristics of who we are, and we are just as alive and kicking without a physical body as we are with it. What we see as death is just a passing from one state of matter to another. When we die, our energy field pulls out of the body, but as our consciousness and self consists of energy, it goes on existing in exactly the same way as the electricity that lit up our lamp goes on existing after we have turned the lamp off. Energy cannot cease to exist. We are eternal beings because everything that makes us into the person we are sits in our consciousness in the shape of our energy field or aura. It is this entity that survives the death of the body. The physical body can be defined as an instrument for the consciousness forces of the “I”. Death is an illusion.
Else Byskov is the author of the following books on the survival of consciousness: “The Undiscovered Country. A Non-religious Look at Life after Death” (just out September 2010), “Ten Great Ways to Understand the World. The Larger Perspective on the Leading Edge of Thought”, (2010), “Death Is an Illusion” (2002), All available from Amazon. “The Art of Attraction” (2009, www.smalldogma.com). Read more about the evidence for the survival of consciousness on the author’s website: www.deathisanillusion.com