A distant voice? Perhaps they hear voices close and clear.
A man in an unconscious vegetative state has been able to respond to questions. While his brain was being scanned he was asked to think of an action, then a different action. Each time a different area of his brain lit up on the scanner monitor.
My friend Don is advanced in years and is getting great pleasure from his recent entrance into the world of Internet communication. He read of some research that claimed too much Internet use can make a person depressed. Jokingly he announced online that he must be depressed. Don underestimated the efficiency of Internet communication and he was soon getting sympathetic replied from his cyber friends on other countries.
Speaking into the mind of those in a vegetative state is not so easy but it now at least seems to be possible. Great conversations will now be possible with some of those locked into their still world.
What will we now hear from those yes and no converstations? Will we discover hope or dispair? If new levels of awareness are dicovered it will shed new light on conversations that have been carried on in thier presence such as family feuds or partners moving on to new lovers.
The think I wonder about more than anything else is whether a way will be discovered of calling those people our of their frozen state. What power! What a privilege to be the one to make that call. It reminds me of the account in the Gospel of John in the Bible1 where Jesus has the entrance stone removed from a dead man’s tomb. Jesus then calls, “Lazarus, come out!”
Are we on the verge of a new age when the modern equivalent of the call to Lazarus will become common? This is going to change so many lives.
- John chapter 11 verses 38 to 44 [↩]