Bob Monroe's out-of-body experiences
He was one of the first people back in the 1950s to organise scientific studies on consciousness. Through his out-of-body experiences he gained a knowing, through experience as opposed to belief, that we survive physical death.
He describes how we arrive as an alien vortex of energy to earth, that our purpose here is to learn not only spiritual lessons but also to evaluate things intellectually and to analyse. The Monroe Institute, which he founded, remains an important center of consciousness research.