End-of-Life Experiences (ELEs)

End-of-Life experiences and NDEs are my primary interests at the moment. Brayne and Fenwick (2008, p. 9-10) describe typical phenomenological features of ELEs:

Transpersonal ELEs
– Visions involving deceased family members or religious figures who come to help the dying through their dying process.

– Being able to transit to and from other realities, often involving love and light.

– Coincidences which are experienced by someone emotionally close to the dying person but physically distant. The person might for example report that the dying came to them at the moment of death, often to say they were OK, sometimes across great distances and often at the precise moment of the person’s death.

– Other ‘strange’ or transcendent phenomena occurring at, or around the time of death such as a change in room temperature, clocks stopping synchronistically, and the witnessing of vapours, mists and shapes around the body. These shapes can be accompanied by feelings of love, light and reassurance, which may stay with the person who witnesses it for many years.

– Cats, dogs and birds can behave strangely. Some carers feel a ‘presence’ in the room for a short period of time after death has occurred. Often carers describe this as a warm, loving atmosphere. Other find it more troubling.”

Final Meaning ELEs
– A sudden desire to become reconciled with estranged family members or to put personal and family affairs in
order.

– Previously confused, semi-conscious or unconscious individuals might experience unexpected lucid moments that enable them to rally enough to say farewell to those around them.

– Unconscious or dying people may appear to possess the capacity to wait for the arrival – or departure – of relatives before they die.

– Profound waking or sleeping dreams which help the individual to come to terms with what may have happened during their life, perhaps in part to prepare them for their death.”

L. Stafford Betty

More info later.

Brayne and Fenwick (2008): End-of-life Experiences. A Guide for Carers of the Dying. In association with The Clinical Neuroscience Division University of Southampton.