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N.S. NAGARAJA writes about sleep, dreams, cartoon heroes, near death experiences, twisting space and possibilities. What can our senses really tell us about the world around us and inside us?

Yes, I should have just slept that night. I was half asleep and ready to rest. The inseparable, my phone, caught my attention, and so I checked one last time for the day. There was a message from an old school mate, and it said a thing or two, ending with, “On matters of God, I am undecided.” I stared at it for some time not knowing how or what to say.

This spiritual field of feelings is not easy to explain to the intellectual mind. I felt, “Intellect of this kind could be considered as a state of ignorance for the other kind!” In the same half asleep, I happened to read a short article on Near Death Experiences, which said that NDE research is only records of the experiences of people who went through it, and that is not scientific enough. It said that NDE could simply be a neurobiological condition produced under low oxygen levels in the brain, leading to hallucination. How convincing (not)!

I thought, “Less oxygen leads one to biological death, is it not?” But this particular article was trying to convince us that one day science will be able to show that NDE is a creation of the brain and there will be methods to simulate that condition in the brain. Long ago, when I started meditation, I used to think that meditation could just be triggering a chemical change in the brain. Subsequently, my brain allowed for many possibilities and helped me transcend the trap of theories so that I could explore reality with an open mind. The same questions, time and again, cross many minds. Now it was surely time to sleep.

I slipped into sleep with some sort of awareness. Of course it was not a NDE for sure! Now I was in a dreamy state in which there was an idea: what if, now, at this moment, the physical space around me has another dimension? …