Your time has come!
You’ve kicked the bucket,
cashed in your chips,
you’re pushing up the daisies.
In other words, you’ve died.
Sorry about your loss.
Luckily for you, we here at WHAT IF
are here to guide you through the great beyond.
How would you handle dying?
What would happen to your body?
What’s on the other side?
This is What If.
In here is what would happen if you died.
So, bad news.
Mr. Grim Reaper has shown up at your door.
“It’s a Mr. Death or something,
he’s come about the reaping?”
How the heck are you even suppose to process this?
In 1969, psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
1969年 精神病学家Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
conceptualized five stages of dealing with death,
a roadmap we still use today.
The stages are
and finally acceptance.
But before the Grim Reaper drags you off,
let’s make absolutely sure you’re dead.
In 1968, a Harvard panel outlined the criteria
for what constitutes an individual being dead.
These can be divided into two major groups.
The cardiopulmonary criteria is when the heart has stopped beating,
and neurological criteria is when the brain no longer functions,
AKA brain death.
If you’ve checked off both those boxes,
I’ve got some bad news for you…
So what’s going to happen to that body of yours?
Well, before you’ve checked off both of those criteria,
it’s a gradual, physical process that varies in each individual.
Let’s say you’re lucky enough not to suffer a fatal accident,
but die of natural causes instead.
First, you’ll start feel a coolness in your hands, arms, legs and feet.
起初你会感觉手 臂 腿 脚开始变冷
As your heart loses its ability to pump blood effectively,
your skin will become blotchy with a reddish-purple color.
This is called mottling.
You’ll be sleeping a lot more,
and will start to become uncommunicative and unresponsive.
Day-to-day’s details will slip.
You may not know the day or month,
or even where you are.
This can usually be attributed to chemical imbalances,
reduced blood flow to the brain, or a combination of the two.
You’ll stop eating and drinking as the time approaches,
with the theory being that the human body naturally conserves energy
for the process of dying.
Around this time you may start to see some unexplainable things.
Bright lights, deceased loved ones.
But what exactly are you seeing?
What is life after death?
Researchers have documented cases
of people who survived being medically dead,
and they all had similar experiences.
They experienced things like a feeling of peace,
visions of bright lights and benevolent figures,
and a relief from physical pain.
But are these just hallucinations?
Studies at Melbourne’s St Vincent’s Hospital show
these visions can help an individual die more peacefully,
and that they are a means of self-comfort.
Is this our body trying to make the experience
a little more pleasant?
What about documented cases of
patients dying on an operating table and claiming to
have witnessed the afterlife?
These patients were able to provide details
of the activity in the room during their “time away”
and said they floated above the table,
or just hung out in a corner taking in the show.
In a 2008 study,
42% of cardiac arrest survivors claimed
that they had some level of awareness as they were being resuscitated.
These survivors said they felt that time was speeding up or slowing down.
They also experienced an overall peacefulness
and the feeling that they were having an out of body experience.
Some felt joy,
and even saw a bright light or golden flash.
That all sounds kinda nice,
except for the fact that an unspecified number of patients
reported feeling fear and a sense of drowning.
However, there is a theory
that you can prepare your body for death.
A University of Wisconsin study
theorizes that in a process called tukdam,
some monks die, yet no physical decomposition begins
for more than a week.
This has led to studies on the neuroscience of meditation.
These monks enter a state of meditation before they die,
providing the brain with extremely low-key maintenance duties
in order to maintain the meditative state.
How would the Western perspective of death change
if people had a pre-death ritual, where they would use decades of meditative training
to get into “the zone” before dying?
It’s kind of crazy what your brain will do when faced with death.
You know, it’s a lot to fathom,
but luckily our friends at CuriosityStream can help you break it down.
We’ve been glued to the screen watching Consciousness
我们曾跟Deepak Chopra和Stuart Hameroff
with Deepak Chopra and Stuart Hameroff.
They go over all kinds of stuff from near-death experiences
to quantum entanglement.
If you’re as curious as we are,
you’re going to love CuriosityStream.
They’ve got thousands of documentaries and nonfiction titles
from some of the world’s best filmmakers,
including some exclusive originals.
Right now, they’re giving What If viewers
access to the site for free for 30 days.
After that, it’s just $2.99 a month,
or just $19.99 a year.
Sign up at curiositystream.com/whatif
and use the promo code”whatif”
But you’d better get to it, before Death shows up and ruins everything.
Let’s face it, we’re all going to die.
Judging by various accounts and studies,
the experience will be different for each and every one of us.
As for what lies beyond the veil,
it’s still a mystery.
At this point, dying sounds like it would be an “experience,” to say the least.
此刻 退一步说 死亡听起来就像是一种体验
But what if you missed the “Dead Man’s Party?”
What if everyone else died except you?
What would life be like if you were the last human on Earth?
Well, that is a story for another What If.
Your time has come!