Ghosts and Dying
In one of my previous posts, Robin's Egg Bleu of http://robinseggbleu1.blogspot.com/ suggested that I do a post on the deathbed visions of ghosts and spirits that the terminally ill often report seeing. The American Medical Society believes these visions are hallucinations and this is the typical scientific take on such visions. However, many respected doctors and professionals have found holes in the scientific approach to these phenomena. According to Volt, in the book Fringeology, Dr. Kubler-Ross who was most famous for changing the way people looked at Death and Dying with her book On Death and Dying, was one of the first people to address deathbed visions. In her work with the dying, she found that it was common for the dying to have visions of a bright white light and visions of spirits, ghosts, and the other side. She found these visions so common and inexplicable that she dedicated much of the end of her life to exploring them. She couldn't embrace the common belief that they were hallucinations because the patients were often brain dead when they had the hallucinations.
Other physicians have found similar things. My husband once had an encounter with a man on the brink of death who had terrible visions of hell. I've known people on the brink who saw angels and ghosts. At the end of life, visions of the other side are common and remarkably similar. Visits from deceased loved ones are common. There have been cases of those on the brink of death being visited by loved ones and friends they thought were alive, but found out later were dead. According to Steve Wagner of About.com, deathbed visions are very common. He says, "Only about 10 percent of dying people are conscious shortly before their deaths. But of this 10 percent, it is estimated, between 50 and 60 percent of them experience these visions. The visions only seem to last about five minutes and are seen mostly by people who approach death gradually, such as those suffering from life-threatening injuries or terminal illnesses."
Regardless of people's beliefs prior to their deathbed vision, the visions are surprisingly similar. It doesn't matter if you believe in ghosts, God, Allah, or nothing at all, on the path to death your visions will seem much like everyone else's. All of this evidence suggests that at the moment of death, we are granted a brief glimpse of the other side. Often, this vision can take the form of ghosts that come to guide you through the process of death. The dying describe these ghosts as comforting. They are there to help. They are guides, friendly faces in a dark time. Scientifically, these visions can never be confirmed as real, but as someone who believes in ghosts, it is hard for me to believe that the dying are seeing anything but the kind faces who have gone before them, guiding them home.