Near death experiences and the stories that accompany them are just a bunch of nonsense. At least, that's what Dr. Eben Alexander used to think. Alexander is a neurosurgeon, and was once confident in the fact that tales of white lights and pearly gates were patently false, and entirely unscientific. But then Dr. Alexander had his own brush with death.
Dr. Alexander contracted meningitis, a rare illness which attacks the part of the brain which controls thought and emotion and shuts it down. The illness left him comatose, unable to think or communicate with anyone, for seven days. Brain scans showed that his cerebral cortex was completely inactive, with only the occasional sputtering activity. Just when doctors finally made the difficult decision to give up trying to save him, Dr. Alexander woke up. And when he woke up, he was a completely different person.
Before the coma, Dr. Alexander knew that there was no God, no heaven, nowhere to go when you die. But when he woke up after seven days of being practically dead to the world, he had a story to tell. A story which was remarkably similar to the ones which he had scoffed at over the years. He had met an angel, and that angel had taken him to speak directly with the Divine source of the Universe. He now not only believes that Heaven is real, but that Science can and will one day present incontrovertible Proof of Heaven.
Dr. Eben Alexander, born in North Carolina in 1953, is a neurosurgeon and graduate of Duke University School of Medicine. He has served as a resident neurosurgeon at Duke, Newcastle Hospital (UK), Brigham and Women's Hospital (Boston, MA), and Massachusetts General Hospital. He is certified by both the American College of Surgeons and the American Board of Neurological surgery.