Near Death Experience

The near-death experience.

Credit - Ltikorea CC-BY-SA

Credit – Ltikorea CC-BY-SA

Leaving out the home, contact, downloads and welcome pages, these posts are the best of 2014 by visit.

14. Near Death Experience – Part Three
What happened to parts One and Two? How does the third one outrank the others?

13. Flesch Reading Ease
This surprises me. Why is there so much interest in a method for rating how easy it is to read text?

12. Yawning
Of things our bodies do, including Synesthesia, Smell (1, 2 & 3), Earworms and Handedness, yawning is the most popular.

11. Ball Lightning – Part Three
Again part three is first.

10. Ball Lightning
And it appears readers jumped right over Part Two to read these.

9. BitTorrent Bundles
Good. I’m glad people are interested in my BitTorrent Bundle. No idea how this fits in with the rest, though.

8. Gecko Feet
I’m glad to see this. I have a soft spot for these little guys.

7. Altocumulus Castellanus
This is the only entry from the Cloud of the Day series. Maybe because it sounds so grand?

6. Collective Nouns
I like this series. It’s a lot of fun. Even Part Two.

5. Aquatic Ape – The Theory Evolves
The Bipedal series did well, taking three of the top five spots.

4. Whispering Galleries
This is no surprise. There’s something intrinsically interesting about whispering galleries.

3. Spanking for Love
This is no surprise either. Humans, eh?

2. Bipedal – The Aquatic Ape Theory
The Aquatic Ape is popular, but the Savanna Ape is even more so.

1. Bipedal – The Savanna Theory
This post got more than twice the number of views of the two Aquatic Ape posts combined.

That’s what you were looking at in 2014. Thank you for your interest, and thank you for keeping it interesting for me. Without you, it could be a pretty bleak job maintaining Green Comet’s home on the Internet. You encourage me to carry on, both with this site and with the sequel to the novel, which should be ready in the middle of 2015.

That was the best of 2014. See you in the new year.


Lucid Dream

Lucid Dream

Further study of lucid dreaming. From the article:

Tales of lucid dreams date back to antiquity. Aristotle may have been the first to mention them in Western literature in his treatise On Dreams. “Often when one is asleep,” he wrote, “there is something in consciousness which declares that what then presents itself is but a dream.”

If you want to have a lucid dream, there are a few strategies you can use to up your chances. Besides regularly questioning whether you’re awake and setting an intention before bed to become lucid, you can keep a dream diary. Getting familiar with common characters, events or themes in your dreams may help you recognize when you’re dreaming.

Lucid dreaming often gets lumped in with near-death and out-of-body experiences. They’re all thought of as windows on a reality that’s normally closed to us. In one sense that’s true. They aren’t part of our normal reality. But lucid dreaming is not like the other two. NDEs and OBEs are usually the result of trauma or other radically altered states, such as anesthesia or the effects of other drugs. Those are not the kinds of experiences you want to have any more often than you have to. Lucid dreaming, on the other hand, is something you can do every day with no ill effects. If anything, people say it makes their lives better.

Another indication that they’re different is that, while a high percentage of the material on NDEs and OBEs concentrates on the magical and mystical, many of the people talking about lucid dreaming just want to sell you stuff. Supposedly their products will allow you to enjoy lucid dreaming with next to no effort.

Lucid dreaming is defined as dreaming while aware one is dreaming. It may or may not include the ability to control the dream. There are all sorts of tips on how to do it. Here’s one that I know works. When you go to bed, spend a few moments going backwards through that day’s activities. When you wake up, spend a few moments going backwards through that night’s dreams. You should have your first lucid dream within a week.

Lucid dreams have mystical associations. The truth is, they’re just fun.


NDE Tunnel
See also parts one and two.

Near death experiences(NDE) have interested people for a long time. They are so powerful and mysterious that we invest them with deep meaning. The earliest recorded example we have is from Plato in, “The Myth of Er,” the concluding legend in “The Republic.” Er dies in battle and revives ten days later on his funeral pyre. He tells people of his time in the afterlife, celestial spheres and reincarnation. Supposedly, moral people are rewarded and immoral people punished after death. Continue Reading

Out-of-body Experience
See also parts one and three.

Last time, we looked at our amazing brains and how they can build large, complex representations of reality from patchy information supplied by our senses. Although our eyes and ears have small sensors that can only transmit approximations of what they detect to our brains, those amazing organs reconstruct a three dimensional replica of it which is sufficient for our needs. And they do it many times a second. Continue Reading

NDE Light
See also parts two and three.

The brain is an amazing organ, or collection of organs, depending on one’s point of view. It all seems to work together as one, but it is composed of many different subsystems. Neurologists have been able to map specific functions onto specific brain regions, such as so-called “speech centers” and parts associated with emotions, but the brain brings it all together to form one sense of self existing in one version of the world. Continue Reading