Conclusion (Evidence of the Soul & Heaven from Near Death Experiences, VI)
Do near death experience provide evidence for heaven? The studies of near death experiences mentioned in previous posts give considerable, probative evidence of transphysical consciousness after bodily death which is not explained by current physicalist explanations, and unlikely to be explained by future ones.
In view of this, and the preponderance of evidence for a positive, loving experience after bodily death, we now have an ultimate context in which to interpret happiness and suffering.
We no longer need to limit happiness to our physical existence and our bodily lifespan, but can explore transcendent and eternal happiness both now and in our eternal future.
At this point, the evidence and methodology of experience, reason, and science fall silent. For even though near death experiences point to a future of intense love, what we would typically call heaven, we are left with many questions that NDEs, natural reason, and experience cannot answer.
- How do we orient ourselves toward heaven, this post-mortem life of love?
- Is the “being of light and love” God? Does God help us, protect us, guide us, and inspire us in this life? If so, how?
- In view of the fact that about 85% of children undergoing clinical death have near death experiences, why do only 9 to 18% of adults have one?
- Is there something that adults must decide or do before they can transition to a heavenly domain (with the being of light, deceased relatives, and Jesus)?
- Why do some adults (around 1%) have negative post-mortem experiences?
- Does God or the being of light have a specific purpose for each of us?
- Can we pray to God or the being of light before we die?
These and many other questions go beyond the data of near death experiences – yet they beg for an answer in light of them.
Does God or the being of light stop his revelation (about our transcendence and post-mortem future) with near death experiences – or does he provide additional revelation that can answer the above questions?
I find it incomprehensible that a loving God who gives us a glimpse into heaven and our eternal existence with Him (through NDEs) would leave us completely in the dark about the above questions – especially if they have significance for that eternal existence with Him.
If this conjecture is correct, then God must have given us another source of revelation to answer the above questions. What could be the source of that revelation?
I would submit that it is the revelation of Jesus Christ – not only because many people see Jesus in near death experiences, but also because the being of light is intensely loving – resembling Jesus’ revelation of God as “Abba” and “the father of the Prodigal Son.”
For Jesus, God is not only our Father, but “Abba” (the word used by little children to address their fathers). Jesus compares him to the father in the Parable of the Prodigal Son – a father who is unconditionally forgiving, compassionate, affectionate, accepting, and humble.
Jesus not only reveals His Father to be unconditional love, but also He Himself. His miracles, teachings, love of sinners, and self-sacrificial death all show this unconditionally loving heart which gives credibility to his claim to be the only begotten Son.
Moreover, many members of the early Church were witnesses to his resurrection, and reported that his risen body was transformed. Some aspects of this transformation resemble near death experiences.
Furthermore, Jesus’ view of the resurrection as a state of unconditional love is corroborated by the vast majority of near death experiences. These parallels between Christianity and near death experiences suggest that Jesus does hold the key to the additional revelation we need to orient ourselves from this life to the next.
If the above reasoning seems plausible to readers of this website, you might want to explore Jesus’ revelation further.
You can do this by exploring the fourth pillar of intellectual evangelization – the “Reality of Jesus.”
In addition to the free video, you can explore the evidence from the Shroud of Turin and the free Jesus Wiki on the latest historical evidence supporting his claim to be the only begotten Son of the Father.