Oct 12, 2012

To believe or not to believe in a heaven?

I came across an interesting article recently, while browsing through some online news sites. The article describes the Near Death Experience of a Harvard Neurosurgeon while he was in a coma, with his cortex apparently shut down. Dr. Eben Alexander saw, or sensed, pink fluffy clouds, angels, and a darkness brimming with light that made him not afraid but happy. Out of the coma, Dr. Alexander now believes not only in heaven but also an afterlife.

I find this somewhat hard to believe. The good doctor says he can vouch for a physical heaven, but how do we know that it is really there in the material sense? If so is it a blackhole? because that is a little like what this doctor describes- "darkness brimming with light". The description also reminded me a little of the film Avatar.

But more importantly, how far do we really understand the functioning of the human brain? From what I understand of the article, it is the cortex that is can produce hallucinations. Can we conclusively say that another part of the brain does not take over (that function) if the cortex is shut down? 

Poet William Blake' saw "A heaven in a wildflower" and as long as we live that is probably the heaven to look out for.  

However the article has raised many questions. What are your thoughts on this? 

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