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Heading Toward Omega: In Search of the Meaning of the Near-Death Experience Paperback – December 17, 1985

4.7 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 348 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial (December 17, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688062687
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688062682
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #220,900 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Dr. Ring was my advisor at school (Connecticut) and being ableto see him at work and pick his brain on a regular basis, I can saythat he is greatly underappreciated as a scholar and scientist (albeit a "social" scientist, with all of the stigma that such a title undeservedly carries). Heading Toward Omega and The Omega Project are tremendous contributions to the literature of the Near Death Experience in particular and Consciousness Studies in general. Although the dire predictions of global change in the later chapters of H.T.O. seem a bit goofy from our 1998 vantage point, Ring nevertheless forged new ground with this book that remains, I believe, the best "second" book to read on the subject (after Moody's Life After Life). It is intellectually challenging, thought-provoking, life-affirming and just a darn good read...on every page, no less. High praise, deserved high praise. Not to mention, you'll pick up a few dozen groovy vocabulary words along the way.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Kenneth Ring's work, and study of those who have experienced death, then have come back, makes for exciting reading. It can also go a long way toward alleviating the American culture's fear of death.

In the foreword (p.12), Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, writes of her own experience:
"I was allowed to become part of that light that so many people try to explain in words. Anyone who has been blessed enough to see this light will never again be afraid to die."

Ring observes (p.19) that we have learned to view "death from the outside." When we conceive of death from this perspective, we may have images of physical deterioration and the pain of separation from the dying person.

But the understanding of death suggested by near-death research, provides an "interior view of death." Through collective testimony of those near death experiencers studied, we are told that actually dying (for however long) can be exceedingly pleasant.

Many NDE survivors proclaim that there are no words to accurately describe the "sense of ultimate perfection" that characterizes the "entry into death."

Ring notes that often those who have had an NDE, experience personality changes such as greater feelings of self-acceptance, self-confidence, and self-worth.

Another result noted after NDE's is that individuals tend to have a greater appreciation of life, more love and concern for others, plus a heightened sense of spiritual purpose.

This is a book that offers hope, information, and enlightenment. It is not only fascinating reading, but offers comfort, as we are all going to experience death. Very highly recommended!
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Format: Paperback
I read this book over ten years ago and have never forgotten it! It gave acounts from so many and made me feel as though I were sitting in on the interview. I have read many books on this subject, but I cant wait to read it again! Now if only I could just find it!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Maybe I rate this higher than I should, but for anyone serious about studying NDE it should be required reading. Mind numbing raw data after data throughout, but at least it is combined with solid, credible interpretation. Of course I'm not a very fast reader and don't digest the data very quickly. It does provide rationale for the conclusions.
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Format: Hardcover
Kenneth Ring (born 1936) is Professor Emeritus of psychology at the University of Connecticut, and has written other books such as Life at Death, The Omega Project: Near-Death Experiences, Ufo Encounters, and Mind at Large, etc.

He wrote in the Preface to this 1984 book, "[This] is not just another one of those books crammed with more firsthand accounts of 'near-death experiences.' Rather it is... a book about awakening... I have tried to write this book in a more personal vein since it reflects and, I now believe, concludes my own search for a deeper understanding of these extraordinary experiences... I believe and argue in this book that humanity as a whole is collectively struggling to awaken to a new and higher mode of consciousness... My thesis is, in short, that we ourselves are witnesses to a major evolutionary metamorphosis in the human race and that many NDErs... are on the leading edge of this evolutionary wave." (Pg. 7-9) In fact, he later suggests, "as a by-product of this spiritual development, NDErs tend to manifest a variety of psychic abilities afterward that are an inherent part of their transformation." (Pg. 51)

He admits, however, that "There is one feature of my sample, however, that deserves to be mentioned here... there is a preponderance of women... This was not so serious a problem as it might appear, however, since previous research shows that men and women report similar NDEs... Other methodological matters cannot be so blithely dismissed...
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Format: Paperback
Even though it has been several years since I read it, I still find Ring's book[s] inspiring. Heading Toward Omega is an excellent, provacative read, and contains as much information as one could hope to glean from such an abstruse experience as an NDE.
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