Surviving Death

  • 16 Jan - 22 Jan, 2021
  • Mag The Weekly

Surviving Death, a docuseries directed by Ricki Stern based on a book by Leslie Kean, examines different ways people have experienced the idea that death isn’t the end of life. Whether it’s the millions who have had near-death experiences (NDEs), mediums who claim to talk to the dead or people who see signs or actual people from the great beyond, Stern take the phenomena seriously, taking a journalistic view of the study of the afterlife. Mary Neal, an orthopedic spine surgeon, had a near-death experience in 1999, pinned underwater after accidentally kayaking over a steep waterfall. She had drowned, and had stopped breathing for over 30 minutes, and the NDE she had was vivid, with colours she had never seen before, with the warm embrace that many have reported, and the overwhelming feeling of belonging and of time collapsing and expanding. As a doctor, she was never inclined to think of consciousness as anything but something bound by the physical status of the brain. We hear a lot of similar but not the same stories about NDEs. We also hear from experts, like Dr Bruce Greyson from the University of Virginia’s Division of Perceptual Studies, who are constantly seeking to define the science behind NDEs and other concepts that expand the definition of consciousness beyond the physical human body.