Saturday, July 20, 2019

Garzon: Life after death


LAST Easter Sunday the Christian World celebrated the coming back to life of Jesus the Christ, the one who was crucified, died and was buried. But on the third day he rose again from the dead. REALLY?

The Apostles of Jesus claimed that indeed he was risen from the dead. However there were doubters who questioned what they preached. There were even some who alleged that they have stolen the body of Jesus and hid it away. REALLY?

The following are some arguments that would support their claim that Jesus REALLY came back to life:

Argument #1: if the story was simply imagined or made up by the Apostles, how come they were willing to die for it? Usually, any liar who is threatened will confess the truth when things become serious, more so, when their lives are at stake.

Argument #2: How could the helpless and powerless Apostles steal the body of Jesus when it was heavily guarded by the Roman soldiers? Is it possible for a sheep to defeat a lion? Such sheep is REALLY helpless.

Argument #3: How could a dead person be seen and show the marks of the nails in his hands if he did not REALLY rise from the dead? Coming back to life is a phenomena that has been studied and confirmed to be true.

In my previous article last week, I mentioned about doing a research on the Phenomenology of Near Death Experience. The participants I targeted were those who have been declared Dead on Arrival (DOA) or declared to be Clinically Death (CD) but after sometime, they came back to life. I guess those who have known someone surviving death or who came back to life do not have any difficulty in believing that such phenomenon do happen. Yet, others who are not familiar would usually ask, “REALLY?”

My answer is, “YES, REALLY.” In the words of one NDE survivors, “It is not simply a theory but it is really an experience.”

There REALLY is life after death. We do not simply vanish or disappear when we die. We continue to exist. Like the case of Mr. Raffy Catalan (one of my participants who by the way gave me the permission to share his experience), died. He saw his body lying in the hospital bed and saw himself passing through the wall. When he was on the other side of the wall, he saw his friends gathered and after which he saw himself floating up and passing through the hospital roof and eventually found himself talking to a divine being. Cutting his story short, he shared that he was ask to choose between his own choice or God’s choice. When he announced that he has chosen God’s choice he was immediately catered back to life and found himself back at the hospital. What REALLY stood up as a confirmation that his was really an experience and not just simply an illusion or hallucination was the fact that while recuperating at the hospital, one of the friends he saw (at the other side of the wall when he died) came to visit him. He asked his friend if he was wearing a particular kind of shirt and was wearing a belt with a buckle shaped like an eagle and that he was wearing a top-sider shoes, his amazed friend replied and said, “Yes I was. How did you know?” Mr. Raffly answered, “Because I was there watching you.” That means he was still alive after dying.

In conclusion, we do not simply believe that there is life after death because of our faith but also we believe or can claim that there is life after death because of the experiences of those who have died “in a little while” but then returned to life. That is why we Christians can proclaim confidently that, indeed, there REALLY is life after death!


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