A Harvard-trained neurosurgeon's minute-by-minute account of his own near-death experience - and what he discovered in the heavenly realm beyond life.
On November 10, 2008, Dr. Eben Alexander was driven into coma by a disease so lethal that only 1 in 10,000,000 survive. Seven days later, he awakened with memories of a fantastic odyssey deep into another realm that were more real than this earthly one - memories that included meeting a deceased birth sister he had never known existed.
Dr. Alexander deployed all his knowledge as a scientist to find out whether his mind could have played a trick on him. In its shutdown state, there was no way it could have functioned at all. That left only one conclusion: that we are conscious in spite of our brains - that, in fact, consciousness is at the root of all existence.
The evidence supporting Dr. Alexander's experience transformed him into a believer in God's unconditional love and brought reconciliation to his family - and will upend our ideas about human consciousness and spirituality.
©2012 Eben Alexander (P)2012 Simon & Schuster, Inc
"Dr. Eben Alexander's near-death experience is the most astounding I have heard in more than four decades of studying this phenomenon. In my opinion, Dr Alexander is living proof of an afterlife." (Raymond Moody, MD, PhD, author of Life Beyond Life)
"Eben Alexander brings a unique perspective to the sacred world combining a glorious, personal vision of spiritual consciousness with patient, insightful scientific inquiry. Proof of Heaven is a compelling story of what may lie ahead for all of us in the life beyond this one. We have nothing to fear." (Allan J. Hamilton, MD, FACS, author of The Scalpel and the Soul and Zen Mind, Zen Horse)
"I can highly recommend this important book that has the potential to break many scientific taboos." (Dr. Pim van Lommel, cardiologist, author of Consciousness Beyond Life: The Science of the Near-Death Experience)
I finished listening to this book about 10 days ago and find that I remember very little about it, other than a few idiosyncratic features of Dr. Alexander's story.
For one, it seems that his illness was exceedingly rare, and when it does strike, takes no prisoners. What are we to infer from his narrative? We are nudged toward the conclusion that Dr. Alexander's recovery, intellect intact, must be a miracle; although he stops short of casting it as such.
As for his son, who bears the majestic title of Eben IV, I guess he's OK with the moniker. But really? To refer to him always as Eben-the-Fourth must get a little cumbersome, to say the least.
His account of the NDE itself is ordinary fare. You've read or heard it all before.
Dr. Alexander reads well, and conveys his story with sincerity.
Yes. I'm always looking to better understand the unavoidable fate that awaits us all. I like the concept of heaven, and find a book like this somewhat reassuring and comforting.
When Eben saw a picture of his previously unknown , deceased sister... whom he unknowingly met, as his guide in heaven.
I always like when an author reads his/her own book... I feel a closer connection to the author.
Yes, but I always listen on my commute to/from work.
Great book... really enjoyed it.
The thought that this doctors/scientist who had a near-death experience and wanted to share it with the world and have no doubts about it and said soo many times it was as real as life. To me in my heart listening rather than reading and hearing the emotion in his voice it was so believable and soo full of hope. He explained it with so much colorful detail and emotion Ill admit made me cry a few times..
For me, my husband who lost his mother and believes there is nothing after this, I told him about this doctors experience and about his sister being his guide in the end, I know made him think about it and I know I saw a little hope in his eyes that all the pain she went through was not for nothing and made me wonder which one of her loved ones was waiting for her when she left us..
Im also a believer in meditation and practice it as much as I can since I was young, as I still am in my almost 33yrs of living. I've had some weird experiences with meditation and saw some beautiful things that sometimes I thought had to be a dream but I know it was more, it had to be. The doctor inspires me to keep on meditating, and reminds me that we are more than our bodies and that we are not alone.
I know my mind is full of crazyness and as he explained in lots of expressive words some of his experiences with his mind (who does'nt want to have an out of body experience,or float?) he had since he was a child and like him in my teen years in the 90's I experimented probably too much with my friends but dont regret any of it for I have many of my own amazing memories of my experences with what the mind can show you and do..
The doctors words of life,love and his experience reminded me to always keep an open mind and to Embrace the Unknown. Also while listening to his magical experience I was thinking of the bands who have had a big part in my life and still do with lyrics and melodys that helped me open up my mind when I was young and as needed to this day and forever will when I need a reminder that there is more..
Ph.D. Psychologist and Coach
I downloaded this book on a whim, not knowing what to expect. If you'd asked me before listening to Alexander's story I would have said that no afterlife exists. However, this is a compelling and convincing portrait of an experience -- an amazing and wonderful experience -- while the author was in a coma and had no apparent brain activity. What happy news!
This book is an enjoyable read and I do recommend the story.
This is why I give 2 stars overall: the author is human. Credentialed or not, the author is fallible, and it is still possible the he was dreaming.
I think the reality (for now) is that science doesn't understand the limits and capabilities of the brain. What the doctor's experience tells me is that the brain is capable of pulling dream states from deeper levels within itself.
Dr. Alexander clearly understands the limits of the human neocortex and thoughtfully ruled out why he could not have been dreaming. But, I am still skeptical. Why?
On the one hand, his brain is shut down (coma) and his neocortex is unable to weave together visual/audio experiences.
But on the other hand he can vividly share his story by applying descriptive attributes to that which he experienced during coma.
If the brain did not produce the experiences, then what and how did those experiences get back into the brain so the Dr. could vividly detail them for us?
Dogs and Mice have less intelligence than humans, yet they both have REM sleep cycles. When I see my dog twitching and barking during REM, it's doubtful he is struggling with the meaning of life. He is probably just chasing around a neighborhood cat...but he still dreams.
If his less "evolved" brain can dream, it still seems very possible to me that the human brain can produce dreams at levels more primitive than the neocortex.
if the author did not have a huge ego and want to talk about where his family members worked (both biological & adopted). Between listening to him ramble on about degrees/titles etc you have to listen in GREAT detail about his sickness and how SPECIAL and UNIQUE it was.
To actually talk about life on the other side more than he did....I think the amount of time spend on the actual subject of the book could have fit into one chapter...
I would not have bought this book and given money for something that it not worth the paper its written opn
extreme disappointment, anger when I thought about the author just wanting to jump on the Life after Death bandwagon...
I would listen to it again at a later date to pick up some more details and maybe from another perspective.
It was from a neuro surgeon and his account I my mind cannot be disputed.
His entry to the 'globe'.
I was moved by several parts of the book. It was intersting to my how detached be became from his family as he went deep into his NDE.
This is the most unusual NDE account I have read so far.
56 year old working wife, mother and grandmother.
I must admit I was expecting more on the heavenly visit. I was dissappointed he didn't have more to tell about what was impressed upon him. I found myself mildly bored with the scientific explanations but yet was educated by it. I was not bothered by his terms as a few apparently were and I feel that perhaps God really wouldn't be either. I feel that we see things differently down here than what GOD does .Ths verse came to my mind while reading other reviews. Matthew 18:3 And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. We adults have to many preconcieved ideas. I am thankful for Eben pursuing the writing of his very sprecial experience and suggest you read or listen to his book.
While I believe Dr. Alexander's illness was real there are holes in his story that trains could easily speed through. He receives the best of care for his illness, which the general population would never be accorded. His description of his own NDE is nothing more than something a good fiction writer would come up with. He claims not to have read any other NDE books and uses that as part of his proof that the other world he visited is real. I don't know that he didn't read anything else. That's simply a self report with all the holes in it that anyone's self report would have.
But it isn't his experience and description of where he went during his coma that I find true fault with. What makes him less than a credible source is the dogma he flaunts throughout the book. Additionally, his charmed life, incredible education, his own wealth, world travels and even fairy tale resolution to what he claims was a huge emptiness in his life are what makes him less believable. Were I to read such a story from an average person not given all these opportunities and elite life, I would give it more weight.
I'm happy Dr. Alexander found something he can hang on to. I respect his story and even how well it is written and read. It's clear he found something very important to him and it works for him. I'm genuinely delighted about that on his behalf. But for the rest of his, his memoir may be a sign post, marker or pointer, but it is proof of nothing.
Other NDE stories are far more compelling. I would spend your credits on something else.
Scientific and logical
Eben He was able to describe his extraordinary experience and it seemed very realistic.
His long term experience as a physician and non-believer is somewhat normal. However, his life changing experience and explanation convinced me! He was able to explain to me how science and god can coexist. It finally make since to me. I studied medicine formally for 13 years and I've treated patients for the past 28 years.
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