The International Association for Conscious Dying (IACD)

    Statement of Purposes and Principles, Commitment to Continuing Education

 

 

 

 

The International Association for Conscious Dying (IACD) is an educational institution founded in 1990 to elucidate and acquaint people with the final moments of physical life and prepare the dying for nonphysical or spiritual life thereafter. Specifically, it holds seminars and workshops for medical and other health care professionals to prepare them to care with compassion and understanding for patients suffering from cancer, Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), and other terminal ailments. It is non-denominational and non-religious in the sense that it does not promote or sponsor any belief system or religious organization over any other. On the other hand, it promotes peace and human happiness on earth as well as in other planes of existence.

Although death is a normal incident in human life, it is surprising to realize that in Western culture there is very little thought or concern given to it. After all, no one is exempt from dying. What taboo is it then that causes such a hushed attitude towards life's most inevitable event? Probably the most plausible explanation is simply the “fear of the unknown,” seconded only by the Aristotelian resistance to that which physicalistic science cannot measure or understand--such as the nonphysical soul which cannot be contained in a laboratory test tube. But what is really baffling is the tendency of the physicalistic scientist to disregard consciousness, the primary instrument he uses in his research and investigations, as a paradigm in those investigations. This is obviously because both the soul and consciousness are nonphysical.

However, these objections are no longer valid. Much has been known of consciousness in death, resulting in the abatement of much of the irrational fear usually associated with it. The accumulated Near-Death Experiences (NDE) of some 12 million men, women and children have been documented by researchers including medical doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists and philosophers like Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Raymond Moody, Jr., Brian Weiss, Melvin Morse, Michael Sabom, Kenneth Ring and many others. The sheer weight of scientifically-gathered evidence definitely suggests the existence of an after-death world, indicating that physical death is not a dark and dreadful end but only a transition to another life full ofjoy, love and light.

Dr. Benito F. Reyes, founder of the IACD, referred to these phenomena as “out-of-the-body experiences” or OOBE as early as 1949 in his source book, Scientific Proofs of the Evidence of the Soul, published in Manila, Philippines, and where he related his own OOBE. Its second and updated edition was published as a Quest Book in 1970 by the Theosophical Publishing House in Wheaton, Illinois under a revised title, Scientific Evidence of the Existence of the Soul. The third and updated edition of the book, published in 1998, includes two chapters on OOBE and NDE, which phenomena the author considered as more convincing evidence of the existence of the soul than any of the eight consciousness phenomena that he had originally discussed in his book--Memory, Sleep, Dreams, Hypnotism, Psychical Research, Psychedelics, Death and Reincarnation.

However, in 1986, before the formal organization of the IACD as a community service commission of the World University of America, of which he was then president, Dr. Reyes published a second book on death and dying which he titled, Conscious Dying--Psychology of Death and Guidebook to Liberation. Its avowed objective “is to help a person pass through the process of death without losing consciousness,” and it included the latest findings in researches on NDE and OOBE. This book, naturally enough, became the textbook of the IACD and was specifically intended also as a handbook to be read to the dying. It has the effect of removing fear during the last moments and prepares the soul for a life without a physical body.

The IACD meets many needs. It provides a forum where OOBE, NDE and related phenomena of consciousness can be studied, resulting in the ending of ignorance and the alleviation of the fear of dying. The Association requires no blind belief or dogmatism; it is rational and scientific in its approach and considers objective evidence in both the physical and the nonphysical levels of observation. It provides a non-partisan psychological “vocabulary of consciousness” which is descriptive without being offensive to any religious group. The IACD is ministerial as well as educational. With the special elements of correct knowledge and loving concern, the IACD prepares medical professionals and laymen with the readiness to bring real peace and solace to the terminally ill or dying.

More than this, the Association, without any pretensions to exclusiveness, profundity or erudition, aims to help the dying to take advantage of an unparalleled opportunity to realize his highest potential nature at the moment of what is called the “clear light.” Dr. Reyes emphasized the importance of this ancient teaching when he said, “Dying is the Door to Immortality and a Gateway to Liberation.” A proper preparation for death enables one to face death awake, aware and ready for this liberating experience. And, as Larry Dossey, who lectured in an IACD seminar, said:

“if you die before you die, then when you die you shall not die.”

It was the intention of the IACD founder to help the dying pass through this phase of the “clear light” without being blinded and losing consciousness. This is the meaning of “Conscious Dying,” which inevitably leads to “Conscious Immortality” when the integrity of consciousness is maintained at the moment of death. The IACD unlocks the door that blocks our knowing the truth about this very critical but exciting moment, and prepares one to leave the body calmly and consciously. While most of us were born without our consent, we need not die against our will or without our full awareness.

What Sets Apart IACD
from Other Providers of Continuing Education

While the IACD considers the need for Continuing Medical Education (CME) of the medical profession as a whole, it gives particular emphasis on the educational needs of health care professionals for ministering proper and adequate help to the terminally ill or dying patients, particularly those suffering from cancer, AIDS and other serious ailments. The IACD seminars under the CME program prepare the health care provider to help the patient face death without fear and with dignity and wisdom.

It is this vital aspect of the IACD educational program that sets it apart from other CME providers. As an indication of the IACD's dedication to this aspect of the program, it has engaged the services of known pioneers in the field of death and dying like Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Raymond A. Moody, Jr., Melvin Morse, Larry Dossey, Kenneth Ring, and David Cundiff. Having these leading professionals speak in the IACD seminars held in major hotels and other well-known locations has entailed considerable expense, which has made the program financially less rewarding. However, the Association has continued holding the annual conferences as a tribute to the founder, who had his Final Out-of-the-Body Experience (FOOBE) in September, 1992, and to advance the noble objectives he had envisioned for the program.

An indication of the growing popularity of the subjects covered in our seminars is that most of our speakers have been invited to appear in major talk shows like Oprah, Donahue, 20/20, Turning Point, Tom Snyder and others. Most of these speakers are MDs and have also written bestsellers, an indication of the growing interest, without fear, of the people in what is ultimately inevitable--the passing away of the physical body.


For more information, write or call

The International Association for Conscious Dying

World University in Ojai, 107 N. Ventura St., Ojai, CA 93023

(805) 646-1444; FAX (805) 646-1217