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  • Writer's pictureGregory Shushan

Out Soon in Paperback! Near-Death Experience in Indigenous Religions

The wait is almost over -- available to preorder now, for a March 17th release date.


Oxford University Press Website:

  • Winner of the 2021 Parapsychological Association Book Award

  • The first book dedicated to near death experiences in indigenous societies

  • Offers a unique contribution to our understanding of near death experience and shamanic phenomena cross-culturally

  • Presents a new interdisciplinary theory of the origins and development of afterlife beliefs across cultures

  • Presents dozens of previously unrecognized accounts of near death experiences in societies from three continents

"Shushan's comprehensive comparative study of neardeath experiences from Native American, Oceanian, and African traditions features accounts by explorers and ethnologists from the sixteenth to twentieth century. Shushan provides compelling evidence of a persistent core of imagery and experience in NDE from a variety of times and cultures." -- Melissa Conroy, Religious Studies Review

"The book should be of interest not only to scholars of NDEs, but also to ethnographers and scholars of the anthropology or sociology of death." -- Jennifer Uzzell, Mortality

"A fundamental book for all those interested in religious expressions related to after-life and post-mortem, this volume will surely remain a milestone in the study of what Shakespeare precipitously called "the undiscovered country from whose bourne no traveller returns" (Hamlet, 3,1). After all, some travellers, so it seems, have trodden there." -- Davide Torri, Shaman

"For researchers and graduate students, Shushan does an admirable job explaining the challenges of comparing exceptional experience, and demonstrates subtlety and nuance as he compares and contrasts Indigenous NDE in North America, Africa, and Oceania. Readers will be challenged by the breadth of methodological concerns Shushan examines, and by his careful thesis regarding how we can study the power of NDE within the organization of cultural knowledge surrounding the fundamental human concern with the significance of death." -- Mary L. Keller, Reading Religion

"Gregory Shushan has produced the most important scholarly work on near-death experiences in the last thirty years He describes the process by which, despite regular attempts to marginalize its power, the NDE has been perhaps the most important shaper of religious creativity in human history. This is a journey and an argument as fascinating and as engrossing as the social history of mankind itself."--From the foreword by Allan Kellehear, 50th Anniversary Professor, End of Life Care, University of Bradford

"Near-Death Experience in Indigenous Religions is a tour de force. By comparing recorded cases from North America, Africa, and Oceania, Shushan presents a compelling argument for the centrality of Near-Death Experiences to the development of religious ideas across time and culture. Any future discussions of NDEs and the origins of religion will need to take Shushan's major contribution into account."--Fiona Bowie, founding member of the Afterlife Research Center

"Gregory Shushan's new book provides a uniquely insightful and provocative analysis of near-death experiences that documents their formative influence on worldwide beliefs about an afterlife. His ethnological perspective results in a more comprehensive understanding of NDEs than a purely biological or psychological model can provide, and suggests that afterlife beliefs are rooted not in culture but in the universal human experience of NDEs. This book is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand NDEs and their role in society."--Bruce Greyson, Carlson Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences, Division of Perceptual Studies, University of Virginia

"This is a remarkable survey of near death experiences gathered from reports across the world. Interested readers will be amazed at the data reported by the author in this erudite and intelligent inquiry."--Gavin Flood, Professor of Hindu Studies and Comparative Religion, Oxford University

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