The phenomenon of terminal lucidity first attracted attention when it appeared among people who were cognitively challenged or demented (because otherwise, it might not have been noticed)
Bernardo Kastrup: I certainly believe in consciousness after death. I believe that our core subjectivity, that implicit, innate sense of “I”-ness, remains undifferentiated. That’s the reason you still think you are the same person you were when you were five years old even though everything about you has changed.
Anthropologists have gone back and forth as to whether animals grieve. They seem—almost as if intentionally—to miss the point.
The most likely explanation is that death is a process of shutting down, rather than an instant when everything stops. The genes to grow a spinal column, for example, resurfaced but maybe they had been suppressed because the deceased already had one. Still much to learn but that’s a good hypothesis to test.