"[A] meticulously researched book...Glimpsing Heaven is full of lively, vivid, engaging reporting. And it is delightfully funny...fascinating, well-told, haunting..." –The Weekly Standard
Glimpsing Heaven: The Stories and Science of Life After Deathby Judy Bachrach
If you caught a glimpse of heaven, would you choose to come back to life? Investigative journalist Judy Bachrach has collected accounts of those who died and then returned to life with lucid, vivid memories of what occurred while they were dead, and the conclusions are astonishing. Clinical death—the moment when the heart stops beating and brain stem activity
If you caught a glimpse of heaven, would you choose to come back to life? Investigative journalist Judy Bachrach has collected accounts of those who died and then returned to life with lucid, vivid memories of what occurred while they were dead, and the conclusions are astonishing. Clinical death—the moment when the heart stops beating and brain stem activity ceases—is not necessarily the end of consciousness, as a number of doctors are now beginning to concede. Hundreds of thousands of fascinating post-death experiences have been documented, and for many who have died and returned, life is forever changed. These days, an increasing number of scientific researchers are turning their studies to people who have experienced what the author calls death travels putting stock and credence in the sights, encounters, and exciting experiences reported by those who return from the dead. Through interviews with scores of these “death travelers,” and with physicians, nurses, and scientists unraveling the mysteries of the afterlife, Bachrach redefines the meaning of both life and death. Glimpsing Heaven reveals both the uncertainty and the surprising joys of life after death.
Near-death experience is the common term for when an individual undergoes physical death but after resuscitation has memories of retaining consciousness and awareness of what happened while they were dead. Investigative journalist and Vanity Fair contributing editor Bachrach (journalism, John Cabot Univ., Rome) attempts to find out exactly what happens when we die, through interviews with doctors, nurses, hospice workers, researchers and those who experienced near death—which she says is a misnomer. There is nothing "near" about it; these people met all the definitions of being clinically dead. Death travelers (Bachrach's term) are consistent in reporting being drawn to a peaceful white light or tunnel, often meet dead relatives or other beings, and commonly watch medical practitioners working on their corporeal bodies or observe their loved ones reacting to their demise. This happens to young and old, men and women, atheists and religious types alike. As medical science advances these reports are becoming more plentiful. VERDICT There are previous books on the subject, such as Raymond Moody's Life After Life, but this book's journalistic approach makes the topic accessible to the secular and skeptical crowd.—Janet Tapper, Univ. of Western States Lib., Portland, OR
- National Geographic Society
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Meet the Author
JUDY BACHRACH, a renowned investigative journalist, is a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and professor of journalism at John Cabot University in Rome, Italy. She was educated at Chatham College and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. Her work as a hospice volunteer inspired her investigations into life after death.
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This was a fast and fascinating read. I appreciated that the author profiled people who'd had very good experiences with death, but didn't exclude a couple who did not. It was all interesting and often moving. The stories seem to corroborate the idea that I've heard in Science of Mind, The Course in Miracles, and other so-called "new age" type philosophies, that our energy always was, is and always will be. Nothing kills the soul. I recommend this book to anyone who's grieving the loss of a loved one. I'd also like to recommend the book When God Stopped Keeping Score. It is a moving testament to forgiveness.
To me, there wasn't an easy flow of the material. The writing seemed a little disjointed and disorganized. Of course hearing about near death experiences is always an interesting topic but you won't learn anything new here that isn't readily available on the internet.