“Proof of Heaven” ~ Does Proof Exist?

Late one night a couple of weeks ago, I was surfing the Internet {no surprise to anyone…lol} and noticed a friend on Facebook asking for suggestions of a good book to read. Another friend of mine responded with, “…you have to read,  Proof of Heaven, it’s amazing”.

Proof of HeavenI Googled the book and found there are actually two books with that name. I messaged my friend re: author and found the book she was recommending was written by neurosurgeon Eben Alexander. As a former Operating Room nurse, my interest was immediately peaked and I put it on my mental list of books to read.

A couple days later I was in Costco, {which we jokingly refer to as the $200.00 store} and while browsing the book section saw, Proof of Heaven. Deciding it would be a good summer read, I tossed it in my shopping cart.

I was in the midst of reading another book so my daughter decided to read it first.  She often reads in the living room and would sometimes leave the book sitting on a side table.  One day I walked by to see my husband totally engrossed in reading this book, which was a bit of a surprise.  Not that he was reading, just that he was reading this book. It was not the usual biography/history type book he would normally pick up.

OK, I’m going to put this out there right now.  Even though I was born and raised in a fairly strict Catholic household, I am on the fence about the whole “heaven” concept.  I want with all my heart to believe there is something else, a place beyond this world; but, I cannot.

I envy (FYI, envy is not a “good” Catholic word, but, it is how I feel) people who truly, beyond a shadow of a doubt, believe there is “something else”.  They have nothing to lose and immense peace of mind to gain, and I want to be one of them.  However, I am more apt to believe religions use their dogma to control morality and without “heaven and hell” hanging over us, we would live in a world of total mayhem and chaos.

If what the believers say is true, they have spent this life content in the knowledge they will someday be reunited with all who have gone before them.  If it isn’t true, well they will never know the difference.  The logical part of my brain keeps questioning how a place like “heaven” could that possibly exist, to me, it makes no scientific sense.

My husband and daughter both talked incessantly about this book and insisted I had to read it.  And I did.

Am I a believer now?  Hmmm…what I can tell you is this.  It took me days to read this short book. I found it to be quite tedious, but it was also very thought provoking and even a little scary.  My husband whizzed through it in a few hours, he was and still is a believer, which has actually always surprised me as well as brought me a lot of comfort.  He is the smartest person I know and I have to think, if he believes, I must be missing something. He was a believer prior to reading this, so for him the book served as confirmation.

And me?  Well,  I guess I was hoping for undeniable proof of heaven.  I was quite disappointed that I personally, did not find irrefutable evidence and that I am still on the fence. Maybe I wanted it too badly and was just asking too much.

Have you read Proof of Heaven?

I would love to hear your thoughts.

Are you a believer?

Where you a believer before reading the book?

Has this book made you a believer?

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Comments

  1. I think it probably would be an interesting read, and my “hook” would be that it was written by a neurosurgeon ( as I worked for 17 yrs in “neuro”). Honestly don’t think it would change my mind, but have learned to never say ‘never’!!

  2. Kathy has my copy Pat, but when she is finished you are welcome to borrow it.

  3. I’ve never read it and I’m not really a believer because I don’t believe in god. My dad was a devout Catholic and I’m not sure he believed in heaven. He used to laugh at my cousin who is a fan of John Edwards and those other alleged psychics. I figure if my dad hasn’t tried to contact me or her to say there is indeed an afterlife, then there isn’t. Same with my ex husband who is now deceased.

  4. Stephanie says:

    I am so much like you. I am atheist, and I do proudly wear the label, but it’s because I am so logical and literal that the idea of God and heaven and hell and all that just sounds soooooo far out there and it honestly has since I can remember, and I was raised by a Southern Baptist who was a very devout believer. But I mean, what else should I believe in? Elves? Fairies? I just can’t. And I know exactly what you mean about envying people who believe. How wonderful must it be to be able to turn your worries away? I can’t do that though when I know that everything that happens in my life is because I led myself to it (not counting things beyond my control, but I control my reactions to those things, and THAT shapes my future too). I take all the credit for the things I have done. If there is a God, he wasn’t the one who did all the hard work – that was all me. And it actually bothers me when people won’t take credit for the good things they have done, and instead say “God did this.” No, he didn’t. You did.

    I believe that people are inherently good though. I don’t believe humanity got to where it is today because religion made us do it. Look at all the other species on the planet. Dogs, for example, don’t run around killing things because they have no sense of right and wrong. They very clearly have an idea of how to behave among other dogs and humans – even wild dogs form packs. What is perceived as aggression from wild animals isn’t aggression – it’s defensiveness because they perceive a threat and they are protecting themselves/their territory. Religion didn’t teach them to not kill for fun. They are born with that knowledge, I believe.

    My boyfriend grew up very much immersed in Christianity. He even spent his lunch breaks attending Bible study in high school. He continued attending church long after his parents and brother quit going. Now that he’s almost 30, he still believes in God, but he admits that he views it as an irrational belief, and that he thinks I am most likely right (by that he means my atheism). Why he still prays make no sense to me – I can’t wrap my head around it. We’ve fought over religion a few times in the two years we’ve been together. He knows to keep any of it away from me. I live with chronic pain and many chronic health issues and have since birth, and I d*** sure didn’t do anything to deserve it, which really doesn’t fit in with that whole “God is good” philosophy. Good people/things/deities don’t look down on the things they created and say “You, there, you will suffer all your life no matter how much good you do.” And if my pain is punishment for never believing, then why would I look upon God in a good light? I mean, I rescue dogs and foster them in my home, spending my money to do it; I volunteer; I donate money to many different causes; I’m raising one heck of a good, mindful, caring daughter; I work hard at my job; I pay my taxes; why should I get a lifetime of pain?

    Sorry, this ended up longer/rantier than I intended. I just was so pleased to see someone else in the blogosphere talking about things that I feel too. So thank you so much for this post, and for helping me to feel less alone in the blogging community.

  5. I’m reading this book now. I’ve been away from it for the past week or so, because my daughter and Tasmanian, energized bunny, of a granddaughter are visiting. Of course they attract all the other daughters along with their little bundles of energy. Sorry…I digress!!
    So far I’ve found the book very interesting. I’m still waiting for the ‘punch line’, though. I may have another opinion when I’m finished.
    Kathy at Oak Lawn Images

  6. I’m reading this book now. I’ve been away from it for the past week or so, because my daughter and Tasmanian, energized bunny, of a granddaughter are visiting. Of course they attract all the other daughters along with their little bundles of energy. Sorry…I digress!!
    So far I’ve found the book very interesting. I’m still waiting for the ‘punch line’, though. I may have another opinion when I’m finished.
    Kathy at Oak Lawn Images

  7. I haven’t read the book, but after reading the comments, I am saddened. I believe that God created this world for us to live in, with the laws of nature in effect. I have really wrestled with this, because I thought that bad things shouldn’t happen to Christians, but God never promised us that everything would be all rosy. In fact, he said it would NOT be rosy. Most of Jesus’ early followers were imprisoned and killed. i know, that doesn’t sound appealing, but all I can say is if you truly know and walk with God, you will have a sense of peace that will sustain you through anything that comes your way. And I find peace in knowing that Heaven is the ultimate reward. You don’t have to be “perfect” to get to Heaven…Jesus is our key to Heaven. No one is perfect. He covers our sins.

    Don’t get me wrong, I really struggle at times, because it just doesn’t make sense. But, I cannot imagine a life without God. Just knowing Him has richly blessed me and my family. Not to say that HE richly blessed my family, maybe he did, but I have a problem with that…….because that would imply that he punishes others and doesn’t bless those who really deserve to be blessed. See….struggling here! ha! Anyway, I choose to believe in Heaven and God and I can honestly say that without that in my life, I would be a mess. It doesn’t have to make sense, but to me, it’s the only thing that works.

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