If there is an afterlife remains a mystery, but one woman believes she knows the truth. After complications during heart surgery, a person named Robin believes she saw the afterlife. Robin wrote on the Near Death Experience Research Foundation that she saw beings from another dimension in a heavenly realm.
These beings were apparently “swirling around, happily living their lives” in a world Robin said she did not want to leave.
Robin said: “I felt that this space was infused with infinitely deep, profound love. I was amazed that so many Beings were living in harmony and blissful community; while carrying on with what they thought of as normal life even though there were no physical structures.
“I was accompanied by a larger Being and I seemed to be a young child-like Being.
“The larger Being was silent but spoke telepathically to me, as did the light-Beings with each other. I attempted to join the light Beings, but was gently restrained by my companion.
“The larger Being communicated that it was, ‘Not your time. It is time to go back now.’
“I turned to the Being and said, ‘Oh, OK.’ And we went somewhere else somehow. Then I was in a dark corridor going toward a small light at the end of the corridor.”
Robin then said she was back in her body, but now believes she saw the afterlife.
However, scientists would not be so convinced about Robin’s claim and believe visions of the afterlife are associated with increased brain activity.
Researchers from the University of Michigan clinically induced cardiac arrest in rats while simultaneously monitoring their brain activity.
They were stunned to discover brain activity surged in the final 30 seconds of their life.
Jimo Borjigin, PhD, associate professor of molecular and integrative physiology and associate professor of neurology, said: “This study, performed in animals, is the first dealing with what happens to the neurophysiological state of the dying brain.
“We reasoned that if near-death experience stems from brain activity, neural correlates of consciousness should be identifiable in humans or animals even after the cessation of cerebral blood flow.”
Essentially, if the brain is more active, one might have vivid visions, leading them to believe they had seen the afterlife.
Dr Borjigin added: “The prediction that we would find some signs of conscious activity in the brain during cardiac arrest was confirmed with the data.”
MINNEAPOLIS — A police officer approached a car with George Floyd in the front seat, and Mr. Floyd started to panic. While officers ordered him to spit out a pill he was trying to swallow, he repeatedly begged them not to shoot him.
Within seconds, one of the officers had his gun drawn and Mr. Floyd was being pulled out of the car and handcuffed.
The body-worn camera video of that scene was shown for the first time on Tuesday to jurors in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former police officer charged with murdering Mr. Floyd. The episode was strikingly similar to the day Mr. Floyd died. But it had been taken a year before.
As the defense began its case after 11 days of testimony against Mr. Chauvin, the video was the first exhibit introduced and signaled a key strategy: shifting the jurors’ focus to Mr. Floyd’s use of illicit drugs.
Mr. Chauvin’s lawyer, Eric J. Nelson, presented the video of the May 2019 arrest and questioned the paramedic who treated Mr. Floyd that day. He asked a woman who was with him the day he died about how Mr. Floyd fell asleep in the car and was difficult to rouse. He reviewed the signs of excited delirium, a condition often attributed to using stimulants.
Other planks of the defense emerged as well, including suggestions that the bystanders who tried to intervene were threatening and that Mr. Chauvin’s behavior was reasonable in the circumstances.
A Minneapolis Park Police officer who responded to the scene on May 25, 2020, the day Mr. Floyd died, testified that the bystanders were aggressive enough to make him fear for the other officers’ safety. A policing expert said the period of time when Mr. Chauvin knelt on Mr. Floyd’s neck was not only justified but did not even qualify as force. Each line of questioning was designed not so much to persuade the jury, but to sow the seeds of reasonable doubt.
The judge, Peter A. Cahill, has tried to bar a common defense tactic, blaming the victim. He has strictly limited testimony about Mr. Floyd, saying that his past acts and state of mind were not relevant to the case.
But the defense has tried to expose jurors to Mr. Floyd’s history of involvement with the police, and arguments over how much of the May 2019 arrest jurors would see began well before the trial.
Mr. Nelson said that arrest showed a pattern of behavior in which Mr. Floyd responded to the police by panicking, implying that he faked his response.
“This goes to the very nature of this case and why public perception is what it is,” Mr. Nelson said in court a few weeks ago. “The things that he is saying. ‘I can’t breathe.’ ‘I’m claustrophobic.’ Calling out for his Mama.”
The judge did not buy that argument, and initially barred any mention of the incident. He changed his mind after a second search, in January, of the squad car used on the day Mr. Floyd died turned up half-chewed pills of methamphetamine with Mr. Floyd’s DNA and saliva on them. He said that showed similarities between the two arrests, but he allowed the jury to see only about 90 seconds of the 2019 video.
“This evidence is being admitted solely for the limited purpose of showing what effects the ingestion of opioids may or may not have had on the physical well-being of George Floyd,” Judge Cahill told the jury on Tuesday before the video was shown. “This evidence is not to be used as evidence of the character of George Floyd.”
The video showed Mr. Floyd being slow to respond to commands from the police, and the officer who wore the body camera reaching to put Mr. Floyd’s hand on the dashboard. “It escalated real quick,” said the officer, Scott Creighton, who is now retired and who was the day’s first witness.
The prosecution has tried to engender empathy for Mr. Floyd’s struggle with opioid addiction, presenting testimony that he had tried to stop using. On Tuesday, the paramedic who was called to the precinct to treat Mr. Floyd in 2019 said he told her that not only had he taken an opioid painkiller as the officer approached the car, but that he had been taking them every 20 minutes.
Dan Herbert, a defense lawyer in Chicago who specializes in representing police officers, said the defense accomplished its goals in presenting the 2019 arrest. “What Nelson needs to do is show a side of George Floyd that is different from the poor individual that suffocated before everyone’s eyes on video,” he said. “He was lucky and didn’t die in that incident in 2019 — he wasn’t as lucky in 2020, that’s the strategy there.”
But the evidence could backfire because it showed an aggressive, profanity-laden approach by the police officers, and because unlike in 2020, Mr. Floyd was given medical assistance and survived the encounter.
“I don’t think Nelson scored a point at all,” said Albert Goins, a retired Minneapolis defense lawyer who represented the family of Jamar Clark, a Black man killed by the Minneapolis police in 2015. “Not only did Nelson’s use of the 2019 incident not land any blows, it raised the issue of the arbitrary practice and history of the Minneapolis Police Department in stopping its Black citizens.”
The defense spent the most time on Tuesday on testimony from Barry Brodd, the first witness to explicitly defend Mr. Chauvin’s actions.
Mr. Brodd, a former police officer and expert on self-defense, said that putting Mr. Floyd handcuffed in the prone position on the street did not qualify as force because no pain was inflicted.
“I felt that Derek Chauvin was justified, and was acting with objective reasonableness, following Minneapolis Police Department policy and current standards of law enforcement, in his interactions with Mr. Floyd,” he said.
Mr. Brodd made statements that have been used before to defend officers accused of killing a Black man. He mentioned Mr. Floyd’s size and muscular build, and said that some suspects who are high on drugs “don’t feel pain” and can exhibit “superhuman strength,” said to be a sign of a condition called excited delirium that is often used to explain deaths in police custody.
On cross-examination, Steve Schleicher, one of the prosecutors, got Mr. Brodd to acknowledge that under Minneapolis Police Department policy a restraint is considered a use of force, and that a reasonable officer would abide by department policies.
Mr. Brodd acknowledged that he had listened to the videos in which Mr. Floyd expressed pain, saying, “Everything hurts.” But, Mr. Brodd said, he didn’t “note it.”
While Mr. Brodd challenged days of testimony on accepted police practices presented by the prosecution, not all the witnesses on Tuesday were friendly to the defense. Shawanda Hill, another witness, made it plain through her facial expressions that it was not her choice to testify.
Ms. Hill ran into Mr. Floyd at Cup Foods, the convenience store where he spent the $ 20 bill that was reported to the police as counterfeit, and he offered her a ride. Once they were in the parked car, she said, Mr. Floyd kept falling asleep and was difficult to rouse. When police officers approached the car, she said, she woke him.
“He instantly grabbed the wheel and he said, ‘Please, please don’t kill me,’” she said.
Another witness was Peter Chang, a Minneapolis Park Police officer who responded to the scene and was asked to watch Mr. Floyd’s car. As he did that, he said, he became concerned for the safety of the officers who were interacting with Mr. Floyd. “The crowd was becoming more loud and aggressive,” he said.
Officer Chang’s body camera video showed long minutes during which Ms. Hill and another of Mr. Floyd’s associates, Morries Lester Hall, waited on the sidewalk, unable to see what was happening to Mr. Floyd. When the ambulance carrying Mr. Floyd began to pull away, they asked if they could retrieve his phone from the car.
“He’s already gone,” Mr. Chang told them. “He doesn’t need his phone.”
Shaila Dewan and Tim Arango
This article originally appeared on NYT > U.S. News
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen set the pace on day one of pre-season testing, leaving Mercedes playing catch up after reliability issues.
In tricky conditions, with the Bahrain International Circuit engulfed in a sandstorm on Friday, Mercedes were forced to play catch up on day one after struggling for much of the morning session with a gearbox issue.
As the second session opened, the track was almost unrecognisable, as the sandstorm set it for the first two hours, before clearing and allowing Max Verstappen to stretch his legs in the Red Bull.
Mercedes were on the back foot, after the morning session was heavily disrupted by a gearbox change.
Valtteri Bottas only managed an initial installation lap after the team discovered an issue with the car and they were forced to make a gearbox change.
After three hours of work, they finally got Bottas back on track, but with just 35 minutes left on the clock, he was limited to just six laps of running all day.
JUST IN: Fernando Alonso says he has unfinished F1 business
Mercedes struggle as Verstappen dominates (Image: GETTY)
Explaining the frustrations on Sky Sports F1, Bottas said all is not lost, with two days left.
“I, and of course including the whole team, were really looking forward to getting out on track,” he said.
“The first lap, the install lap, we realised there was an issue with the gearbox, so we obviously had to localise the issue, and change the gearbox – which takes quite a bit of time,” continued the Finn.
“Only at the very end we got a few more laps, and then it was red-flagged and that was it. Not an ideal start.”
Mercedes opted out of using their two permitted filming days ahead of the pre-season test, and instead will run two days later on Tuesday, March 16.
DON’T MISS: Lewis Hamilton: Stefano Domenicali lifts lid on retirement advice Valtteri Bottas and Mercedes suffer early setback in F1 pre-season Bottas ‘doing a Nico Rosberg’ in bid to finally beat Hamilton
Several teams, including Red Bull and McLaren, used one of two permitted filming days to shakedown their 2021 machinery, getting a feel for their new set up.
However Mercedes decided against it, and in hindsight, Bottas says maybe that was the option the team should’ve taken.
“It’s very easy to say afterwards, of course now yes we would’ve done it before, but in recent years everything has been pretty bullet proof,” he explained.
“we could say now, but I’m sure that will be reviewed for next year.
“I think actually the good thing this year, is that if you miss some running, we can actually catch up.”
During the lunch break, team boss Toto Wolff said: “We weren’t very fast this morning, because we only did one lap with an aero rake.
“It wasn’t a good start because we had a gearbox issues that came out of nowhere, we haven’t yet been able to identify and understand.
“So I hope, if we are even to have a smoother ride from here onwards, then I think we can recover.
“If we have more stumbling blocks, then obviously there’s not a lot we can do.”
Due to the sandstorm, conditions were difficult for all drivers. McLaren’s Daniel Riccardo topped the timing screens in the first session with a 1:32.203, with the Red Bull of Verstappen (only use forename in first mention of person) setting a 1:30:674 in the afternoon. Lewis Hamilton finished the session 10th, two seconds behind the Red Bull of Verstappen.
Max Verstappen quickest on day one (Image: GETTY)
Speaking to Sky Sports F1, Red Bull boss Christian Horner explained: “Obviously conditions are tricky, they’re tricky for everybody – it’s very windy here, but it’s just to be back out on track and getting some mileage in and learning and getting a feel for the car.
“I think it’s slippy for everyone out there. It is what it is. I think the driver [Verstappen] was pretty happy with the car, so I think it was a positive start.”
And as for any talk of how Mercedes got on today, the team boss was quick to dismiss any interest.
Horner said: “We’re more focused on ourselves than what others are doing. At the moment of course, all teams take pictures of the other cars and information will come in overnight, but our main focus is on that of our own and progress at the moment, and so we’ve got a plan that we’re working through and we’ll continue to do so.”
And speaking of the new partnership at the team, Horner was pleased with initial impressions.
“There’s a good dynamic between [Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez] already, long may it last,” he said.
“I think Checo has got so much experience, he’s a pretty relaxed character, he’s a nice guy -the two of them have known each other for a while anyway, and Max is an easy guy too, so they’re working very well together.”
McLaren impressed on their first day back with Mercedes power since 2014. Riccardo setting the fastest lap of the morning, with Norris 0.215 off Verstappen’s fastest lap in the afternoon, with an encouraging early start to the partnership.
Ferrari had their own reliability issues, when Charles Leclerc stopped on the track, bringing out the only red flag of the morning session just before lunch.
Ferrari are looking to put a disastrous 2020 season behind them, their worst performance in 40 years, with Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jnr.
And Haas weren’t without issues either, with Mick Schumacher only putting in 15 laps, as the rookie’s team suffered with gearbox issues too.
Day two gets underway on Saturday with conditions on track set to improve, however there will be plenty of questions for the ten teams, with just two days left to get the answers.