If you wish to upset the law that all crows are black, you mustn’t seek to show that no crows are; it is enough if you prove one single crow to be white. ~William James
Today in my “Afterlife Topics” group, we have a troll who starts her post with “This will probably get me kicked out of here, but…” And she was off. First of all, there was no reason to believe her post was going to get her kicked out of the group unless she started attacking people in the group (which she later did). Second, why would one make a post that one thinks is going to get them kicked out? The moderator/founder of that group is very open minded and we’ve had lots of conversations on different subjects. Ironically, the NDE group that many of us are in (a much larger group) does restrict posts which is why many of us have left that group.
Back to her “offending” post. She then went on to say that someone had directed her to a medium, the medium was terrible using hot and cold reading techniques. The medium was clearly a fraud. So, why do people in this group insist that mediums are for real? Well, no one in the group has ever claimed all mediums are good, let alone that all mediums are real. There are clearly fake mediums. And, like any other profession, there are bad mediums, medium mediums and there are mediums who are rock stars. In certain professions, the appearance of a few, or even a lot, of frauds we seem to allow to taint the entire profession. Back to William James, If you were to find one white crow that wouldn’t tell you how many white crows there are, but it would prove, beyond all doubt, that not all crows are black. People doing research on mediums have shown that not all mediums are fake. There are mediums who can do readings, under conditions controlled for guesses, cold readings, hot readings, researching the subject (sitter), reading the sitter’s mind, etc. and these readings have a statistical confidence level beyond all possibility of chance. I can name two- Dr. Gary Schwartz and Dr. Julie Beischel. Both of their work has been published. This added to anecdotal evidence like my own, readings with some of the top mediums in the country and having “hits” on things they could not possibly have known or researched, lets me know beyond all doubt that not all mediums are fake.
Sadly, the person who made the post seemed to be itching for a fight. She and at least one other person ended up leaving the group after we simply pointed out the error of her thinking.
Then, in my Fear of Death Support Group, while we were trying to help a young girl whose friend had died and was now obsessed with a debilitating fear of death, we had a person come storming in and insist that people in this group were either lying or just ignoring the truth. Her claim was that there are near death experiences where the person who “died” ended up in an eternal hell that that person could not escape until they were resuscitated. Wow. There is just so much wrong with that I hardly know where to start. First I pointed out the purpose of our group is to help people overcome the fear of death, not to put the fear of death into them. But, let’s examine the logic of the claim anyway. An NDE while it is certainly evidence for consciousness existing apart from the body and enduring physical death, is not the same as death. That’s why it is called a NEAR Death Experience. A common occurrence in NDEs is coming to a barrier that the person knows if she crosses, she cannot return to this physical life. There are less than positive NDEs, where the person is in discomfort or distress. There are stories of “earth bound spirits”. As an aside, Swedenborg speaks of hell. Interestingly enough, in Swedenborg’s hell, God does everything he can to make the person in hell as happy as that person will allow God to make him. God never allows anyone to get any worse, but you can get better. Stretch that out over an eternity and how could hell be permanent? Even if you only infinitesimally got better, if you could never get any worse, one day you’d be “good”. Back to my main point, in every one I have heard, the person has been released from that place, while still in the NDE. i’m not claiming that NDEs don’t exist where the person doesn’t remain in that place the entire duration of the NDE. But, less than positive NDEs are fairly rare. These must be even more rare. And, let’s assume they exist. The other claim was that the person ends up in this place “for no reason”. Really? So, the universe is random and some people end up eternally tormented for no reason? And last, the person is there “forever”, at least until they are resuscitated. Uh… NDEs typically only last a few minutes or seconds in Earth time. That is hardly an eternity. Clearly, if the person is back in the body, he was not condemned to hell forever. It’s quite possible he had a negative NDE (or gave himself a negative experience) because that’s what he needed as a wake up call.
When it comes down to it, I realized that there is a choice. We can choose to focus on the rare negative NDEs, telling ourselves ghost stories and frightening ourselves into a fear of not only death but life. Or, we can look at the massive body of evidence from NDEs, afterlife communications, scriptures, mediums, etc. and we can take heart. We can look at all the mediums and psychics who are terrible or even frauds and say they’re all a bunch of kooks or we can look for those white crows.