When presenting evidence for a spiritual realm, I usually bring up the phenomenon of Near-Death Experiences (NDEs).
NDEs are usually very threatening to materialists - whether they're tenured scientists at a university or young horny college students in the HBD/Game movement.
When debating the HBD/Gamers online, I'm often surprised by how hostile they are to evidence that challenges their worldview. I'm sure they think their hostility will make me doubt myself and back off; rather by revealing their own insecurity, it makes me push back even harder.
Let's take Chuck Ross, for instance. Chuck comments on my website (and vice versa) on issues pertaining to Game. Last week, when the Game topic moved to larger questions about God, life and death, tempers flared on both sides. I felt that Chuck was too quick to dismiss my evidence, while Chuck felt that I was personally attacking him. Overall, it was not one of our more productive debates.
In any case, as part of my essay, Kumbaya Alert, Chuck requested more evidence for NDEs. And I promised to give it to him. Just for the record, I am not entertaining any hope that I can convince Chuck of the merits of this issue. But a promise is a promise. And so I emailed my friend Alex Tsakiris, host of the excellent website Skeptiko, to give a brief outline of the best reasons to accept NDEs.
This is most of what Alex wrote...
*I often cite: http://www.iands.org/ and http://www.nderf.org
*NDE is usually a highly organized and lucid experience occurring while unconscious or clinically dead, which is medically inexplicable.
*1,000s of well documented cases of NDE have been recorded by researchers. Best estimates suggest millions have had NDEs.
*Reports of NDE and related survival of consciousnesses experiences are extremely common throughout time and across all known cultures.
*The best evidence (i.e. peer-reviewed published research) establish that NDE can not be explained by the prevailing mind = brain paradigm. Not a single scieitific paper published in the last 10 years contradicts this statement.
*A majority of NDErs, report being able to see and hear in the out of body state during their NDE. The accuracy of their descriptions have been confirmed by physicians who were present during these experiences. Such accounts by one's primary physician are generally accepted as strong evidence (i.e. "case studies").
*Highly visual NDEs occur among those with significantly impaired vision or even legal blindness, including several reported visual NDEs in those blind from birth.
*The consistency of the order and content of NDEs show that they are not solely due to pre-existing beliefs (i.e., religious belief in heaven, judgment, etc.).
*The evidence is favor of survival of consciousness is so strong that, were it not for the taboo against the belief, it would be considered a scientific certainty.
Remember, what Alex provided isn't the final word on NDEs; it's the first word.
Any opposition to NDEs must take these basic factors into consideration and address them head-on.
Semantic games like "the very definition of the term Near-Death precludes any observations made during death" (yes, that's an actual quote) will not be considered valid.