It was somehow appropriate to go up almost immediately from Arnie Green’s funeral to an interview in Salt Lake City for a film about not only near-death experiences or NDEs but experiences suggestive of a premortal existence.
The film project, apparently led by Tom Laughlin, appears to be built around or upon the work of Sarah Hinze, whom I met this afternoon. She gave me copies of two of her books, which I look forward to reading:
As will be obvious to anybody who has followed this blog with any degree of attention, I’m deeply interested in near-death experiences. My interest is motivated by various aspects, but one of them is simply this: The great Harvard philosopher and psychologist William James liked to say that the only thing necessary to prove that not all crows are black is one white crow. If a single believable NDE account or out-of-body-experience can be identified, that will be enough, in and of itself, to refute materialism, or reductionism, or naturalism, or mind-body identity.
From the account of Dr. George G. Ritchie’s near-death experience given in his book Return from Tomorrow:
“What did you do with your life?
It seemed to be a question about values, not facts: What did you accomplish with the precious time you were allotted?
How much have you loved with your life? Have you loved others as I am loving you? Totally? Unconditionally?
I have shown you by the life I lived. I showed you by the death I died. And if you keep your eyes on Me, you will see more. . . . “
“Death is nothing more than a doorway,” Dr. Ritchie insisted, “something you walk through.”
George G. Ritchie, M.D. (1923-2007), was born in Richmond, Virginia. He eventually served as president of Richmond’s Academy of General Practice; chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at Towers Hospital in Charlottesville, Virginia; and founder and president of the Universal Youth Corps, Inc., for almost twenty years. In 1967, he entered private psychiatric practice in Charlottesville, Virginia. Then, in 1983, he moved to Anniston, Alabama, in order to serve as head of the Department of Psychiatry at the Northeast Alabama Regional Medical Center. He returned to Richmond in 1986 to continue in private practice, retiring in 1992.