“It's a real public service to have debates that bring top-tier participants together and add the sizzle of prize fight competition to a discussion of issues of first-order importance.”

- The Atlantic

More praise for IQ2 US

Death Is Not Final

From the Panel

  • Against: SEAN CARROLL

  • Physics and the Immortality of the Soul
    Sean Carroll, Scientific American, May 23, 2011Among advocates for life after death, nobody even tries to sit down and do the hard work of explaining how the basic physics of atoms and electrons would have to be altered in order for this to be true.
  • From Particles to People
    Sean Carroll, James Randi Educational Foundation, July 2012Theoretical physicist Sean Carroll uses science to explore the nature of humanity, live on stage at The Amaz!ng Meeting (TAM) 2012.
  • Reluctance to Let Go
    Sean Carroll, Preposterous Universe, June 16, 2010There is no life after death; there’s no spiritual essence that can preserve a human consciousness outside its physical body.
  • Abortion and the Architecture of Reality
    Sean Carroll, Discover, June 4, 2009Living organisms are just very complicated chemical reactions, not vessels that rely on supernatural essences or mystical élan vital to keep them chugging along.


  • Proof of Heaven?
    Steven Novella, NeurologicaBlog, October 11, 2012Refuting Eben Alexander’s claims that there is no scientific explanation for his NDE, Novella offers several.
  • Your Deceptive Mind
    Steven Novella, James Randi Educational Foundation, July 2012Steven Novella, M.D. talks about neuroscience and the nature of consciousness at The Amaz!ng Meeting (TAM) 2012.
  • Near-Death Experience Research Debate with Dr. Steven Novella
    Alex Tsakiris, Skeptiko, May 2010Join Skeptiko host Alex Tsakiris for a two-part series with Yale University Neurologist, Dr. Steven Novella, discussing his skepticism of NDE research claims. Part two available here.
  • Near Death Experiences
    Steven Novella et al, The Skeptics’ Guide 5x5, May 22, 2009This podcast episode of the Skeptics' Guide 5x5 features five skeptics discussing near death experiences. Transcript available here.
  • Studying Near Death Experiences
    Steven Novella, NeurologicaBlog, September 19, 2008The burden of proof for anyone claiming that NDEs are evidence for the survival of the self beyond the physical function of the brain is to rule out other more prosaic explanations. This burden has not been met.



  • Near-Death Experience
    The Skeptic’s Dictionary, Last updated January 10, 2014A brief presentation of a skeptical view of NDEs.
  • Seeing God in the Third Millennium
    Oliver Sacks, The Atlantic, December 12, 2012Hallucinations cannot provide evidence for the existence of any metaphysical beings or places. They provide evidence only of the brain's power to create them.
  • Science on the Brink of Death
    Sam Harris, November 11, 2012The impediment to taking Alexander’s claims seriously can be simply stated: There is absolutely no reason to believe that his cerebral cortex was inactive at the time he had his experience of the afterlife.
  • Life After Death: Examining the Evidence
    Victor Stenger, PhD, Huffington Post, April 16, 2012If life after death exists, then evidence should be there. It is not.
  • The Ketamine Model of the Near Death Experience: A Central Role for the NMDA Receptor
    Dr. Karl L. R. Jansen, Journal of Near-Death Studies, Fall 1997Near-death experiences (NDEs) can be reproduced by ketamine via blockade of receptors in the brain for the neurotransmitter glutamate, the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors.
  • Near-Death Experiences: In or Out of the Body?
    Susan Blackmore, Skeptical Inquirer, 1991NDEs provide no evidence for life after death, and we can best understand them by looking at neurochemistry, physiology, and psychology; but they are much more interesting than any dream.
  • The Prophet
    Luke Dittrich, Esquire, August 2013Dittrich’s criticism of Alexander’s NDE experience as chronicled in Proof of Heaven, and a rebuttal from NDE researcher Robert Mays.