AMERICAN CENTER FOR THE INTEGRATION OF SPIRITUALLY TRANSFORMATIVE EXPERIENCES

Breakout Session: Linda Smith, JD, PhD, MA, PC

Dying, Death, and Near-Death Phenomena: Validations from the Quantum World

Abstract:

Whether it is heaven, hell, nirvana, or universal consciousness, believers rarely question the survival of some kind of soul in an afterlife. Non-believers, on the other hand, often feel obligated to deny the survival of consciousness based on their understanding of science. But is it good science to maintain the impossibility of consciousness existing without or beyond the body? As legitimate research into dying, death, and near-death phenomena increases, evidence mounts that information can be conveyed between humans across vast distances and perhaps even from beyond the grave. The concepts of quantum theory and the holographic universe posit the existence of a”non-local domain” beyond space and time that provides a possible explanation for the ability of the mind to exist independent of the brain. This research provides mental health professionals and spiritual directors a useful framework for examining unusual death-bed and near-death experiences from a scientific approach that goes beyond the limitations of a traditional religious viewpoint. This presentation will validate believers’ views about the survival of conscious as well as helping skeptical professionals view these experiences in a broader light. It will also offer suggestions for helping clients accept and integrate their experiences more successfully, whether they are believers, non-believers, or agnostics.

Presenter Bio

Linda Smith, JD, PhD, MA, PC, counsels clients at her private practice, The HeartWorks, in Toledo, Ohio, on issues related to grief and trauma stemming from death, divorce, chronic and terminal illness, job loss, and other life changes and crises. A long-time educator and trainer, she was the Associate Dean and professor at the Jesup Scott Honors College of the University of Toledo for over twenty years. Her non-counseling credentials include a law degree and a Ph.D. in English literature. Dr. Smith is the author of Annie Dillard, the literary biography of the Pulitzer-Prize winning American mystic. She teaches courses and workshops on the survival of consciousness, the Near-Death and other death-related experiences, mysticism and spirituality, the role of personality in the grief process, suffering and personal growth, and the use of the expressive arts in loss and trauma. Dr. Smith and her business partner, Dr. Peggy Lesniewicz, recently established a consulting firm, Exploring Spiritual Dimensions, LLC, to conduct workshops and retreats on topics related to spiritual growth and transformation. http://www.afterlifescience.com

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