Many people suffering a Near Death Experience (NDE) talk about seeing a white light at the end of the tunnel. It is thought that these are illusions created by a fading brain, possibly caused by decreased oxygen.
Written accounts of NDEs go back more than two thousand years and the phenomenon has been reported all over the world. Most reports mention a "point of no return" that if crossed will lead to death, and a person who turns you away from it. Christians often see Jesus or a dead relative, whilst Hindus may see Yamraj, god of the dead. Nearly 20 per cent of heart attack survivors recall at least some elements of an NDE, which can include out-of-body sensations, euphoria, tunnels or a bright light.
Similar sensations can also be experienced by people fainting.