The presiding ministers of most every funeral (at least most every one that I have attended), and well intending friends of the bereaved, have misled them, in an uninformed attempt to provide them assurance and solace in their time of sorrow.
The truth is: "This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event unto all: yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that they go to the dead. For to him that is joined to all the living there is hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion. For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in anything that is done under the sun." Ecclesiastes 9:4-6
There are many stories circulating today concerning the purported experiences of those that have been dead and returned to report the events they encountered while in the state of death. It is unfortunate that so many misguided souls believe these tales and are naive enough to make these perpetrators rich by buying their books, which cannot be true, if the Bible is true. They would not fall for these false tales of death experiences if the ministers officiating in funerals had not deceived them into believing such stories were at all possible.
The Bible informs us,"Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish." Psalms 146:3-4
According to medical science there is no way possible for a person that is dead to have any awareness of anything or to remember anything that transpired while the person was dead. Clinically dead is the state of no heartbeat and no brain activity.
With no heartbeat there is no blood flow through the brain, thus no activity. No activity in the brain leaves one with no operation of the senses.
The word senses is defined as follows: "The ability of the nerves and the brain to receive and react to stimuli, as light, sound, impact, construction, etc.; specif., any of five faculties of receiving impressions through specific bodily organs and the nerves associated with them (sight, touch, taste, smell, and hearing)." Therefore, no brain activity, no senses!
This writer has experienced the state of clinical death and is a witness that the record of the Bible is correct in all aspects concerning the state of the dead. I have virtually no memory of any activity of my (clinical) death nor anything that transpired for about three days after I was revived. The Bible account of death is correct, at least according to my experience.
That is not to discount what can correctly be classified as a near death experience, tunnel, bright light and all. This is obviously a state of hallucination due to the reduced flow of blood in the brain prior to complete blood stoppage. These near death experiences can have some validity, scientifically speaking.
The Bible describes the dead as being asleep (dormant) until the time of the resurrection of the righteous and the resurrection of the wicked. "And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt." Daniel 12:2
"But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep (dead), that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven (sky) with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words." I Thessalonians 4:13-18
According to the above, the dead are asleep and will remain in that state until the last day, when they will resurrect to life, to obtain their final reward of eternal life or eternal damnation, whatever the case may be. In the meantime rest assured the dead remain unaware of any activity here on earth until that great and notable day.