The bonds of love are what connect us to the other side.
Is there an afterlife? Most Americans seem to think so. In fact, according to a 2014 CBS poll, three in four Americans believe in some form of an afterlife. Some closed-minded skeptics will tell you that those who believe in life after death are naïve and desperate to be reunited with their loved ones.
These same skeptics will say that the evidence for survival after death is merely circumstantial and subjective. However, many who have had a near-death experience and still more who have had other forms of spiritual experiences strongly disagree—myself included.
Recently, I had dinner with a friend and we chatted about my research and the afterlife. My friend who I would describe as an open-minded skeptic told me that she is open to the possibility of an afterlife not because of what I write in my books but rather because of who she knows I am as a person. In her words, “I knew the person you were before your experience. I know how much it changed you and I also know you would never make this up.”
She’s right, of course, I would never just make this up. Interestingly, some atheists argue that there is no evidence for a heaven or an afterlife. But for many of us who have had near-death experiences (NDEs) and other spiritual experiences, these phenomena are indeed proof.
Numerous people around the world who have had an NDE report being conscious after their body ceased functioning. My book Visits to Heaven highlights many such accounts from around the globe. The following are excerpts from two examples:
I knew that I had always known him as he looked at me and simply asked, “Are you ready to come?” I then exclaimed in surprise, “Already?” At that moment I remembered that my soul chose to come to Earth. I remembered who I was before I was born and that we are not here by random accident nor are we here as victims. We come here not only to learn and grow but also to give and to receive love in the physical and so much more.
Martha Cassandra St. Claire, MA
I remember slowing down, without my choice, at the entrance to this beautiful lighted place and was amazed to discover my mother and grandmother standing to the right and greeting me with so much love. They communicated to me in some way, certainly without words or hearing, but clearly inside my mind. I was astonished to see them healthy, happy, middle-aged, and so full of love and recognition for me. . .
I then passed into the place of Light: rolling hills, grass, flowers, and blue skies vibrant with color. What amazed me were the intensity, brilliance, and clarity of the color. It seemed to be coming from within each aspect of the landscape. The grass glowed green. It was so beautiful. It was so very beautiful.
Joyce Hawkes, PhD
In addition to NDEs, countless others have reported deathbed visions, divine interventions and afterlife communication accounts. My book Visits from Heaven highlights the story of one mom who recounts hugging her deceased daughter.
One night just before her sixteenth birthday, I walked into my room and sat at the edge of my bed. When I looked up, Tanya was there! She didn’t say anything, but her eyes expressed so much love and she had the most beautiful smile.
Tanya wrapped her arms around me. I put my right hand on her left arm. She was cool yet not cold, solid but not quite hard. My hand did not go through her, but it was just so different; it felt kind of like touching “Jello-O.”
The texture of her skin startled me. There are no words to describe what her arm felt like. I drew a quick breath, and then Tanya gave me the most beautiful loving smile. She just backed away and was gone. I can’t even begin to convey how much her “visit” meant to me.
In 2003, my husband’s deceased friend and former boss came to me in a vivid dream with a message for his grieving wife. The message was confirmed by his family leading me to research the possibility of life after death. At the time I was a young, happy mother of two toddlers and I was admittedly not thinking about the afterlife or whether or not I would see my loved ones again.
In fact, I had never even met my husband’s former boss and had no reason to have such a dream. So to the skeptics who claim that those who believe are gullible and biased, nothing could be further from the truth. I believe in an afterlife not because I am afraid of death. I believe because my experience gave me a glimpse of the afterlife and now I know.
Stephen Hawking once said, “I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.” Everyone certainly has a right to their own opinions. But luckily I, too, don’t believe in fairy stories and I’m not afraid of the dark.
If you have an NDE, afterlife communication or other spiritual experience to share, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You are also welcome to visit my website at http://www.josievarga.com. Thank you!