A lot of people automatically assume that Susan Blackmore is a materialist because she attributes NDEs as dying brain phenomenon. Indeed, a surface reading of Dying To Live would seem to confirm that. But Blackmore actually identifies as a neutral monist. She doesn't believe that matter or consciousness is primary over the other (although, she does say that consciousness is an illusion). But on closer viewing of Dying to Live, particularly in Chapter 7 -- Realer Than Real, she says some interesting things. In this chapter, she examines why the NDEs seem real. In talking about why NDEs seem real, she gets into an interesting discussion on what reality is, and whether there is any reality. She goes on to talk about the theories that perhaps the NDEs take place in alternate realities: She goes on to talk about the holographic theory that when we die, our consciousness shifts from the ordinary world of appearances to a reality of pure frequencies where time and space have collapsed and locations become irrelevant. She talks about why she doesn't think the theory works and ultimately rejects it. Then she talks about about the mystical view and Bohm's theory of an implicate order: She goes on to say that Bohm's theory doesn't explain things like telepathy, clairvoyance and psychokenesis. Then she writes: Then she goes into more technical things about how we do live in a world constructed by our brains. She gives examples of illusions that we experience in our vision, how our brain takes information through our senses and to create a representation of what the outside world looks like, etc. She also talks about "psychic illusions" caused by random, coincidental events. She spends a long time talking about this. Then she goes on to talk about mental models: Sounds pretty materialistic, doesn't it? Yet, she's always railed against materialism and idealism because in her view, both imply a kind of dualism. But anyway, she goes on to talk about how the brain determines what mental model are real and what mental models are not real. Now here is where it gets interesting: One thing the reader may overlook here is that the brain creating the mental models is itself a mental model, and it is a mental model that the mental model creates mental models! So if reality and NDEs are both mental models, then it doesn't really matter if NDEs are "real" within the context of the mental model of reality. Blackmore actually sounds more like an idealist, but a materialist within the idealistic view. So, is life, experience, consciousness... is it all just an never ending flow of mental models?