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F1 Are NDErs Out of Their Bodies or Out of Their Minds?


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Are NDErs Out of Their Bodies or Out of Their Minds?
Bruce Greyson, M.D.

Some clinicians have suggested that NDEs are a form of mental illness. One reason for that suggestion is that NDErs often seem to perceive and believe things that non-experiencers cannot perceive and find unbelievable. Another reason is that NDErs often have difficulty returning to the social and occupational roles they had prior to their experiences. Specific mental conditions that have been hypothetically linked to NDEs include autoscopy, drug-induced hallucinations, psychosis, depersonalization, dissociation, absorption, fantasy proneness, and posttraumatic stress disorder. I review the objective data bearing on the question of specific mental illnesses and general psychological distress in NDErs. Based on that review of the empirical evidence, I discuss the possible evolutionary value of NDEs.

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