You Cannot Die, The Incredible Findings of a Century of Research on Death, by Ian Currie, Somerville House, 1978

Summary (from book cover)

What happens when we die? Is there a soul that survives?

The mysteries of death and dying have awed, frightened and fascinated humankind since time immemorial. Research on death in this century has been particularly extensive and author and psychic researcher Ian Currie painstakingly amassed the results of thhis wide-ranging material.

In a riveting presentation that often reads like a detective story, Currie uses case histories of para-psychological phenomena from out-of-the-body experiences, deathbed visions, mediumship, apparitions, possessions and hauntings, to advance the startling but liberating proposition that human beings do survive physical death.

Originally published in 1979, this landmark study about death and dying provides clear evidence that we have lived before, that we will live again and that, indeed, we cannot die.

Key Results

The author claims: "Few people are aware that death, man's most ancient, mysterious, and relentless adversary, has been studied systematically over the past century by research scientists working in a variety of fields. Even fewer are aware that the harvest of this effort has been a host of fascinating discoveries which lead to four inescapable conclusions:

Many of the most important paranormal events taking place over the past century (up to 1978) have been chronicled in this book. Each is tied to a research reference. This author has chosen to gather his results into the following categories:


Apparitions are generally images of persons who have died previously which can be seen with varying degrees of fidelity. They are not hallucinations because of (1) the normality of the witnesses, (2) some are seen collectively by more than one viewer, (3) some are seen sequentially over time by more than one viewer, (4) some involve tangible physical phenonema, and (5) animals can sometimes sense such a presence.


Hauntings are manifestations of spirits who have not made a transition into the spirit world after death. They generally are linked to a place, not a person. There are many investigated cases of persons who have experienced hauntings. Some success has been had with mediums being able to converse with the "stuck" spirits and convince them to move in the normal fashion into the spirit world.

Out-of-the-Body Experiences

Surveys indicate that an astonishingly high 20% or more of people feel that they have had an experience where they saw their own body from a location outside that body. There are many historical references to this, and thousands of these cases have been reported in modern times. In some of these verified cases, information is reported that could not have been observed from the person's body, and in a fewer number of cases, others view the out-of-body experiencer in apparitional form. Finally, there are cases where the experiencer is able to take some physical action while out of his/her body, including carrying on a conversation, and these events are observed by others. There is one recorded case where a woman, who claimed frequent out-of-body experiences, was able to report, while her sleep was being monitored, a specific number which had been placed so that it could only have been observed from close to the ceiling. The field of remote viewing, with its quite remarkable string of operational and research successes, appears to be one form of projection of some form of one's self to a remote location in order to report what is seen there. The appearance that one may have while out of body, seen by one's self or by others, is believed to be determined by one's thought.

Deathbed Visions

Many people who are dying slowly , shortly before death, (1) experience a vision of someone who has passed over previously or of a religious figure, and/or (2) see visions of a paradise-like world of the afterlife, and/or (3) have medically inexplicable mood elevations. In rare cases, a shared apparition is seen by others at the death-bed. Documented cases exist where the dying individual saw a vision of a person whom they believed was alive but who later was found to have died recently. Certain psychics who have been at the deathbed of dying individuals report sharing the seeing of apparitions with them, although no other person there has the same vision. The following possible causes of deathbed hallucination have been investigated and eliminated--lack of oxygen, drugs, fever, stress, fear and brain injuries or disease. The remaining cause is an altered state of consciousness associated with being near death, the same state which mediums and psychics can assume.

Resuscitation Experiences

A large number of Near Death Experiences (NDE's) are described. They are subject to wide variability. The first part of these are often out-of-body experiences (similar to those of living persons) while their body is dead or nearly so. They also often meet with friends who have passed over previously, or religious figures, and report an ascension into light. A life review is often conducted. In a number of cases during an out-of-body phase of an NDE, sights are reported which could not be seen by the body itself because of its location and orientation. The events reported in NDE's correlate with those reported by mediums who communicate with spirits who actually died and did not return.

Possession Experiences

Possession is believed to occur when a person feels that a discarnate entity has entered their body or their mind and exerted control over behavioral and mental functions. The careless use of ouija boards has apparently caused a number of possessions to occur. Various cases of possession are described.


The meticulous investigations conducted by Dr. Ian Stevenson have established that many cases of claimed reincarnation from spontaneous recollections by children are true beyond any doubt. In some cases a physical birthmark is present at the exact location of a wound which caused the death of the earlier personality. In some cases, xenoglossy has been demonstrated, which is the capability to converse in a foreign language learned in a prior life but one which the present personality has not been exposed to. In large scale hypnotic regression of patients to past lives, it was found that these occurred on a 50-50 basis of male or female which corresponds with the world's birth statistics and most lives were quite ordinary. A large fraction of people who were hypnotically regressed to that time before their current birth indicated that their life today and family had been carefully selected while they were still in the spirit world.

Mediumistic Communications

The experiences of a number of early mediums is described, including that of Edgar Cayce. A principal figure in this topic area is Frederic Myers, an early spiritualist researcher and founder of the first Society for Psychical Research who died in 1901. He wrote one of the most comprehensive analyses of human survivability after death. After his own death, he initiated as a spirit a very complex series of messages to a number of mediums, known as the cross-correspondences. When those messages were assembled at a central location, they revealed for the first time the coherent communication that was transmitted--this was Myers' attempt to show to skeptics that communications from the afterlife were real. He described various aspects of the spirit world in subsequent communications.

Primary Reasons to Read This Work

This book is an excellent overall summary of 100 years of research evidence for the survival of human consciousness. It covers many individual topics and provides an additional framework of evidence of the afterlife. By itself it constitutes a strong argument for the existence of life after death. link


| Home Page |