This page concerns curious aspects of cognition, perception and memory.



Many people who experienced an out-of-body experience (OBE) insist that they were still able to perceive their surroundings correctly from the position of their assumed location in space. From a strictly biophysical perspective, this should not be possible.
Nevertheless, there are numerous accounts of OBEs in which the experiencers have related information they could hardly have known otherwise, and some of these accounts cannot be dismissed lightheartedly. Many of these cases, but not all of them, occurred in near-death states.

In a chapter in a scientific handbook on anomalous phenomena, I explicated the need for further experimental studies into cognition in OBE states. Moreover, I explained why the current approach of mainstream neuroscientists to reduce OBEs to the vision of one's own body from above (autoscopy) is inappropriate, and why it impedes addressing crucial research questions about human cognition (Nahm 2015a).




Messenger dog in World War I

Sketch of an Out-of-Body Experience, after Sylvan Muldoon & Hereward Carrington (1929)




Similarly, I pointed to the intriguing homing ability of dogs (Nahm 2015b). Rupert Sheldrake has already raised the attention regarding this peculiar ability of dogs in some of his publications. Yet, there are practically unknown publications of other authors who have experimented with numerous dogs, and who, like Sheldrake, concluded that the homing ability of dogs cannot be explained by assuming that they only use their normal senses to accomplish this feat.
One of these authors was Edwin Hautonville Richardson. He trained messenger dogs in World War I to return to their keepers from unknown locations.

I summarized these little known studies in a paper, and explicated the need for further investigations that might also throw a new light on as yet unexplained aspects of other animal species' ability to navigate home after being displaced.