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Study Accidentally Caught Brain Actively Dying and It May Prove Life “Flashes” Before Their Eyes

The memory center lit up with activity.

How do you ethically design an experiment to study dying? That’s generally the hurdle scientists encounter when trying to understand that very last process of the mortal meat suit which we call death, but an unexpected and fatal heart attack during an electroencephalogram (EEG) brain scan has given scientists new data they would never have been able to gather purposefully. An 87 year old man who developed epilepsy was undergoing a routine scan to learn what was happening during the seizures but passed away unexpectedly leaving the researchers with the first ever recording of a brain dying, capturing time both before and after the death.  

Surprisingly, the data seems to confirm what is commonly reported from people who have had a near death experience - that your life may truly flash before your eyes in those last and final moments. The unexpected EEG data showed the memory portions of the brain were activated during the death process in a way that resembles the patterns created when dreaming. They are now referring to this process as “lucid dying” but have no answers as to why the brain activates memories in that moment.  

Unfortunately, there is currently no way to know which memories specifically are being activated in death so we hope our brains would send the best ones, but it may be sending anything from calculus homework to the lyrics from a song you haven’t heard since middle school that are inexplicably still stored in your brain. 

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