News Release

What's behind near-death experiences -- science, myth or miracle?

New book Near-Death Experiences explores this controversial topic with historical reports and well-documented cases

Book Announcement


In popular understanding, the expression "near-death experience" refers to the transition between the states of life and death. But how should such experiences be interpreted? Are they verifiable with scientific methods? If so, how can they be explained? Attempting to relate matters of scientific knowledge to subjective experience and the realm of belief is a difficult balancing act, and has led to a variety of approaches to the topic.

Near-Death Experiences by Birk Engmann scrutinizes the diverse views, and also myths, about near-death experiences and describes them from a scientific standpoint. Situated at the intersection of neuroscience, psychology, philosophy, and religious studies, his book will appeal to a broad audience of both scientists and general readers.

Engmann explains, "The multitude of views and models purporting explanation already indicates that near-death research is something of a tightrope walk between rationally explainable theories and the sphere of belief. There is an urgent need for a critical review, and indeed, one which examines the way the natural sciences can throw light on this matter. This is the main aim of my book."

Near-Death Experiences provides explanations for the various experiences construed by some as proof of the supernatural. The author discusses this highly controversial topic, using interesting historical reports and recent well-documented cases.


Birk Engmann works and lives in Leipzig, Germany. He is not only a neurologist, psychiatrist, researcher and artist, but also the author of many medical and historical publications.

Birk Engmann
Near-Death Experiences
Heavenly Insight or Human Illusion?
2014, VI, 150 p. 20 illus.
Softcover €19.99, £ 15.00, $ 19.99
ISBN 978-3-319-03727-1
Also available as an eBook

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