I first heard about Eben’s story when it was highlighted on Biography Channels I Survived . . . Beyond and Back.When his non-fiction book, Proof of Heaven, released– I knew it was going to be a must read for me considering his background as a medical doctor and (before his NDE) an a-religious person. He did attend church but had no personal connection with his faith.
Most of you know that I am a pediatric ER nurse– still showing up for work twice a week until I start to earn James Patterson type money on my books. I’m confident that will happen in 2013 for sure, right?
The tough thing about working in pediatrics is when a child dies. There’s something inherently wrong with the world order when that happens. I’ve been with patients before they die.
Near Death Experiences, or NDE’s, do fascinate me. I am a religious person. I believe in heaven and hell. That’s why I Survived . . . Beyond and Back intrigued me so because it told stories of people who had died and come back. Most went to heaven. Some went to hell. And a few just had strange experiences– like aliens rolling dice on a poker table kind of weird.
As a medical person, I can attest that we don’t handle the spiritual stuff very well. I think part of that is that religious persons like myself don’t feel like they can openly discuss these issues with patients without possibly coming under fire from upper management for proselytizing . . . so generally this is left in the hands of chaplains to deal with.
Except, there aren’t always chaplains available.
Patients who are dying have very valid questions. Is there heaven? Is there hell? What did my life on earth mean?
If you think back to the advent of resuscitative medicine, it’s only been around for a good 40-50 years. Instructing the masses in CPR. Advanced life support measures like ventilators. Algorithms to manage emergency scenarios.
In the past, there likely weren’t hordes of people surviving death. But now, with medical technology, we are more and more pulling people from “the drain” as we sometimes term it. In light of that, there are many more people surviving medical calamities that would have killed them but now they are opening up and talking about their NDE’s.
One such person is a neurosurgeon by the name of Eben Alexander. A very smart, astute physician who was firmly in the camp of believing that NDE’s had a medical explanation . . . until he died himself.
And had an NDE.
We’ll pick up his story next post.