Tuesday, May 07, 2013

More Proof of Heaven?

Some of you may recall an earlier blog about a couple of books written by physicians about their experiences of an afterlife. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say a parallel life, because in both instances the writers entered heaven and then returned. For them it was a foretaste of eternity and convinced the two skeptical scientific types that heaven is real. Of course the stories which are the foundation of these books are what are often called Near Death Experiences or NDEs. There are no books from the beyond, only from those who claim to have literally lived to tell the tale.

The literature on heaven is real enough that Canada's Maclean's magazine just offered a cover article on the plethora of related books. I found it a worthwhile look at the phenomenon -that's really what it is-- and the various approaches of these books. The author of the piece points out that when Elizabeth Kubler Ross studied NDEs people tended to report experiences that were fairly consistent with their religious upbringing. Protestants didn't have visions of the Virgin Mary, for example.

As I said before, I am rather conflicted by all this attention to heaven. I am a resurrection promise guy, after all, but I'm not sure what to make of all this. Is this a symptom of our more secular time that folk find other ways of expressing hope in eternity? Apparently more than half of Canadians still believe in heaven, but there are a lot who don't. And only a third of us give much credence to hell.

Have you read any of these heaven and NDE books? Are you curious? Is heaven still part of your understanding of life and death and life beyond death?


IanD said...

I am hopeful for entry into Heaven, and I imagine for many people (i.e. - those of us seeking SOME kind of proof, or signal that it really is real) these kinds of books or stories of NDEs, etc. are latched onto hungrily.

ECB said...

Yes, to all the questions at the
end of your blog.
The latest book I have read was
"Proof of Heaven" A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife by Eben Alexander, M.D.
Very interesting !
And I have more books....

Judy said...

Hmmm... I have , indeed, read a lot of books and articles on these experiences, having lost people very close to me, and having had unexpected, uninvited, and unwanted "visitations" after the deaths (turned out to be not so scary after all, but comforting)... our faith tells us there is an afterlife - we can only guess what it may be like ... and hope it is, indeed, all Jesus said it will be (my sons joked that our family "mansion" had better have more than one bathroom, and were hoping their dad was making those arrangements for us all, in advance of our arrival!) I just trust in a loving Deity who has cared for me all of my life and will continue to provide for me after this life is over...