Book Review: Proof of Heaven

Proof of Heaven is a non-fiction book by Dr. Eben Alexander about his near death experience (NDE).  Normally, I’m really not interested in this sort of stuff, but this guy is a neurosurgeon … a scientist who has heard about NDEs and had always been convinced that they weren’t real so I thought I’d give this book a shot.  Plus, it’s a pretty short book.

Dr. Alexander is a decent writer.  His descriptions were interesting to read.  Spoiler alert: he describes a sort-of holding place that was gray and then described heaven.  Heaven is the white light area where you feel love and there is someone there to be your guide.  As I said, I don’t read much about NDEs, but from what I’ve heard/seen/read, that seems to be pretty usual.  He drifted back and forth between the gray area and heaven until heaven shut its doors to him.  Then, he started recognizing faces in the gray area and realized that they were members of his family.  When he remembered his family, he realized that he had something to lose and that was his way back to awakening from his coma.

Dr. Alexander said that he was taught many things by talking to God through his guide, but that since he had to return to his earthly body, he was still trying to process everything and couldn’t teach it all to us.  We are all spiritual beings, but our mortal bodies tend to limit our instinctual understanding.  His message to us is that we try to expand our spirituality by looking beyond the physical world.  I’m not exactly sure how to do that.  I’m not sure how I feel about the message either.  I did, however, like the message that he got from heaven.  The message was (and I’m doing this from memory so it’s not verbatim) that you are loved unconditionally and there is nothing you can do that would change that.  How could anyone NOT like a message like that?

It begs the question, though, what about Hell?  What about the people who do bad things? His descriptions of what happened during his NDE were too vague to understand.  He describes the places and how he felt, but he couldn’t describe what he learned or discussed with God.  The gray area wasn’t really Hell even though at first he felt uncomfortable … to me, it seemed more like a holding place.

I found his description of the rare meningitis that caused his coma more interesting, to be honest.  He certainly has a supportive, loving family who were by his side throughout his ordeal.

I haven’t looked up anything else on this book so I don’t have much additional information.  I know that he spends time going around and speaking about his experience, but I wonder if he ever went back to neurosurgery and how his colleagues feel about his book.

I liked the Burpo book about the little boy who went to Heaven better.

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