I had a lot of problems with Proof of Heaven, starting with the fact that all of his ‘proof’ is of the ‘because I say so‘ variety. Like any other zealot, Eben Alexander believes that his word is all anyone needs to take everything he says as absolute truth. Instead of taking a scientific look at his near death experience, he jumps right into I Was With The Great God Om mode.
He says that he never took NDEs seriously, but now that he has had one, he’s a pure evangelist for the fact that his hallucinations were absolutely real. He goes to great lengths to tell how ‘real’ it was and how it was not like a dream. As proof that it could not have been a dream, he points to his medical records that show the thinking part of his brain wasn’t working. He then goes on to tell how he went ‘deeper’ into the Upper Realms than any other NDE in history. It doesn’t seem to have occurred to him that his dream was different because the usual dreamer wasn’t there, so the brain used what it had instead of what it normally used. So he goes with the flow and talks about his time in the After Life and Angels and God.
I couldn’t help but think of Morpheus from the Matrix:If real is what you can feel, smell, taste and see, then ‘real’ is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain.
My own belief on NDEs is that they are the natural process of the brain shutting down, making death as pleasant an experience as possible. This would also explain why all the NDEs have similar aspects and why they have been repeated down through the ages. It’s a natural part of being an animal on earth. But again, the Good Doctor never even considers such a mundane explanation for what happened to him. It was REAL! He says over and over and over, as if simply repeating the sky is purple polka dotted will eventually make it so.
He dismisses out of hand anything, such as the fact that dreamtime is significantly different from waking time, which might explain his experience. What if his hallucinations had not taken place over the course of a week, but merely minutes before he regained consciousness? He calls his waking from a coma a miracle and there is no other possibility offered. He even says that going into a coma was a miracle, since it was impossible for him to contract the illness that put him in a coma in the first place.
I’ve always been a fan of brain entertainments such as Hemi-Sync and Holosync and Brain Sync, these programs use binaural sounds to induce a state of meditation. I was a bit surprised to see Eben Alexander recommend Hemi-Sync to help poeple reach higher levels of being. I have had a number of interesting experiences while meditating, but I have never seen them as transdimensional travel.
Like other such books, it’s basically a bit of preaching to the choir and there is nothing here to convince the doubters and skeptics that Old Doc Eben’s NDE was the defining NDE of all time that proves beyond doubt the existence of the afterlife. As one reviewer on Amazon said-Shirley Maclaine said all the same nonsense 30 years ago.