“Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife” by Alexander Eben, M.D.

I would not call myself religious. I do have faith. There are many things in this world that science alone cannot explain. Even a sense a contentment or happiness could be explained scientifically by the influence of dopamine on neuroreceptors, but that does not give credit to the way those feelings wash over us, making us feel as if things are right with the world. Again, that feeling could be explained but what’s the point? I’m all for understanding the mechanics underlying our thoughts and emotions but for me some things are better left unknown.

  1. My experience showed me that the death of the body and the brain are not the end of consciousness, that human experience continues beyond the grave. More important, it continues under the gaze of a God who loves and cares about each one of us and about where the universe itself, and all the beings within it are ultimately going.
  2. I adored that simplicity– the absolute honesty and clearness of science. I respected that it left no room for fantasy or sloppy thinking.
  3. “You are loved and cherished, dearly, forever. You have nothing to fear. There is nothing you can do wrong.
  4. Love is, without a doubt, the basis of everything. Not some abstract, hard-to-fathom kind of love, but the day-to-day kind that everyone knows. The kind of love we feel when we look at our spouse and our children, or even our animals. In its purest and most powerful form, this love is not jealous or selfish, but unconditional.
  5. The brain– in particular its left side linguistic/logical part, that which generates our sense of rationality and the feeling of being a sharply defined ego or self– is a barrier to our higher knowledge and experience.
  6. Certain members of the scientific community, who are pledged to the materialistic worldview, have insisted again and again that science and spirituality cannot co-exist.
  7. Our brains model outside reality by taking the information that comes in through our senses and transforming it into a rich digital tapestry. But our perceptions are just a model. Not reality itself. An illusion.
  8. Just as most of ordinary life holds too much information for us to take in at once, and still get anything done, being excessively conscious of the worlds beyond the here and now would slow down our progress even more. If we knew too much of the spiritual realm now, then navigating our lives on earth would be an even greater challenge than it already is.
  9. True thought is pre-physical. This is the thinking-beyond-the-thinking responsible for all the genuinely consequential choices we make in the world. A thinking that is not dependent on linear deduction, but that moves as fast as lightning, making connections on different levels, bringing them together. In the face of this free, inner intelligence, our ordinary thought is hopelessly slow and fumbling.
  10. Einstein said, “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as if everything is.”
  11. On the subatomic level, however, this universe of separate objects turns out to be a complete illusion. In the realm of the super-super small, every object in the physical universe is intimately connected with every other object. In fact, there are really no “objects” in the world at all, only vibrations of energy, and relationships.
  12. I am more than my physical body. This simple acknowledgement has profound implications.
  13. Einstein also said, “I must be willing to give up what I am in order to become what I will be.”

Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon’s Journey into the Afterlife

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