"The fact that an NDE is accompanied by accelerated thought and access to greater than ever wisdom remains inexplicable. Current scientific knowledge also fails to explain how all these NDE elements can be experienced at a moment when, in many people, brain function has been seriously impaired. There appears to be an inverse relationship between the clarity of consciousness and the loss of brain function."
– Pim van Lommel, Consciousness Beyond Life


For more than twenty-five years, cardiologist Dr Pim van Lommel has studied near-death experiences (NDEs) in patients who survived cardiac arrest. In 1986 while working at Rijnstate Hospital in the Netherlands he began studying NDEs, along with several colleagues. In 2001 they published their landmark study in the medical journal The Lancet. As the first scientifically rigorous study of its kind, the article caused an international sensation.

Consciousness Beyond Life
by Pim van Lommel
Harper Collins, 2011
Winner of the 2010 Book Award from the Scientific and Medical Network

Van Lommel was granted the Bruce Greyson Research Award on behalf of the International Association of Near-Death Studies in 2005. A year later the president of India, Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, awarded him the Life Time Achievement Award at the World Congress on Clinical and Preventive Cardiology in New Delhi. Van Lommel then wrote the Dutch bestselling book Endless Consciousness in 2007 and later the English bestseller Consciousness Beyond Life. Since then, he has traveled the globe lecturing on the relationship between consciousness and the brain and has written chapters for several books and numerous articles about his research and its implications. Recently, in 2017 he received the Elisabeth Kübler-Ross Award from the Dutch society of Volunteers in Palliative and Terminal Care.

Because the publication of several prospective studies on near-death experience (NDE) in survivors of cardiac arrest have shown strikingly similar results and conclusions, the phenomenon of the NDE can no longer be scientifically ignored. The NDE is an authentic experience that cannot be simply reduced to imagination, fear of death, hallucination, psychosis, the use of drugs, or oxygen deficiency. Patients appear to be permanently changed by an NDE during a cardiac arrest of only some minutes' duration. It is a scientific challenge to discuss new hypotheses that could explain the possibility of a clear and enhanced consciousness--with memories, self-identity, cognition, and emotions--during a period of apparent coma. The current materialistic view of the relationship between consciousness and the brain, as held by most physicians, philosophers, and psychologists, seems to be too restricted for a proper understanding of this phenomenon. There are good reasons to assume that our consciousness, with the continuous experience of self, does not always coincide with the functioning of our brain: enhanced or nonlocal consciousness, with unaltered self-identity, apparently can be experienced independently from the lifeless body. People are convinced that the self they experienced during their NDE is a reality and not an illusion.
— Pim van Lommel, Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences

by Pim van Lommel

Eindeloos Bewustzijn

Eindeloos Bewustzijn (Dutch)

by Pim van Lommel
Uitgeverij Ten Have, 2007

Death, The Gateway to Life: An Interdisciplinary Exploration of Near-Death Experiences

Chapter 1 of Death, The Gateway to Life

Edited by Dr Shirley Firth and Joanna Wilson
ITP Publishing, 2019

The Science of Near-Death Experiences

Chapter 4 of The Science of Near-Death Experiences

Edited by John C. Hagan III
University of Missouri Press, 2017

Papers of Note

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Near-death experience in survivors of cardiac arrest: a prospective study in the Netherlands

Pim van Lommel, Ruud van Wees, Vincent Meyers, Ingrid Elfferich
Lancet, Volume 358, Issue 9298, 2001

Abstract: In a prospective study, we included 344 consecutive cardiac patients who were successfully resuscitated after cardiac arrest in ten Dutch hospitals. We compared demographic, medical, pharmacological, and psychological data between patients who reported NDE and patients who did not (controls) after resuscitation. In a longitudinal study of life changes after NDE, we compared the groups 2 and 8 years later.

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Near-Death Experience, Consciousness and the Brain

Pim van Lommel
World Futures, Volume 62, 2006

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Near-death experiences: the experience of the self as real and not as an illusion

Pim van Lommel
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1234(1):19-28, 2011

Who's Who in Open Science

Julia Assante   near-death experience, archaeology, art history of the ancient near east Henry Bauer   electrochemistry, history, philosophy, sociology of science Mario Beauregard   neuroscience, neuropsychology, mystical experience, postmaterialist science Marc Bekoff   animal behavior, cognitive ethology, behavioral ecology, compassionate conservation Daryl Bem   psi, self-perception theory of attitude formation, social psychology, physics William Bengston   energy healing, sociology, research methods and statistics Dick Bierman   consciousness and quantum physics, artificial intelligence Stephen E. Braude   parapsychology, philosophical psychopathology James Carpenter   parapsychology, clinical psychology Deepak Chopra   consciousness, mind-body medicine, endocrinology Allan Leslie Combs   consciousness, neuropsychology, systems sciences Larry Dossey   internal medicine, Explore, Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine Brenda J Dunne   PEAR laboratory, consciousness, psychology Peter Fenwick   neuropsychiatry, near-death experience, consciousness Bruce Greyson   near-death experience, psychiatry, neurobehavioral science Stuart Hameroff   consciousness, microtubules, anesthesiology Robert Jahn   PEAR laboratory, physics, aerospace engineering Brian Josephson   Nobel Prize in physics, tunnelling effect in superconductivity Menas Kafatos   computational physics, astrophysics, consciousness Bernardo Kastrup   metaphysical idealism, reconfigurable computing, AI Stanley Krippner   consciousness, psychology, dream research Pim van Lommel   near-death experience, cardiology David Luke   altered states of consciousness, transpersonal psychology, parapsychology Lisa Miller   clinical psychology, mind-body medicine, spirituality in children Kathleen Noble   consciousness, clinical and counseling psychology, early university entrance Alexander Moreira-Almeida   spiritualily and health, mind-brain problem, mediums, psychiatry Elaine Morgan   the aquatic ape hypothesis, evolutionary anthropology Roger Nelson   Global Consciousness Project, experimental psychology, psychophysiology, Marilyn Monk   molecular biology, epigenetics, methylation of DNA, deprogramming Adrian Parker   the ganzfeld technique, psychical research, clinical psychology J Kim Penberthy   mindfulness, psychiatry, clinical psychology Gerald Pollack   the fourth phase of water, medical and biological engineering Diane Powell   consciousness, autistic savants, neuropsychiatry, clinical psychiatry Dean Radin   consciousness, psychology, physics, electrical engineering Beverly Rubik   biophysics, consciousness, spiritual healing, energy medicine Marilyn Schlitz   mind-body medicine, parapsychology Gary Schwartz   spirit detection, life after death, dream precognition, mediums Rupert Sheldrake   morphic resonance, telepathy, the sense of being stared at, biology Stephan A Schwartz   remote viewing in archaeology, nonlocal consciousness Rudolph Tanzi   Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's, genetics and aging, neurology Russell Targ   lasers, remote viewing, Stanford Research Institute Charles T Tart   transpersonal psychology, altered states of consciousness, dreaming, hypnosis Neil Theise   multi-organ adult stem cell plasticity, pathology, theoretical biology, complexity Jim Tucker   psychiatry, neurobehavioral science, children who remember previous lives Cassandra Vieten   IONS, mindfulness, addiction, mind-body medicine Harald Walach   consciousness, homeopathy, complementary medicine, clinical psychology Marjorie Woollacott   meditation, near-death experience, human physiology, neuroscience