One of the greatest unanswered questions about death is whether we are transported to another place after we take our final breath. Heaven has fascinated many - there are songs about heaven and it's the subject of many, many movies. What happens if you go to heaven? Are you aware of who you used to be on earth? Are you someone completely new?
People who say they've gone to heaven insist there’s a place where people spend the rest of eternity, but almost everyone who claims to have visited the afterlife offers different descriptions of heaven. So what is heaven really like? Depending on who you ask there are butterflies (almost too many of them) or rainbow colored horses. And some visitors to the great beyond claim there are multiple heavens, although they fail to explain the post-life hierarchy that would allow someone to travel between the various forms of the afterlife. Maybe it’s one of those things that can’t be explained, only understood.
Even if you believe there’s no life after death, and that the only time we’re afforded is what we have now, it’s still interesting to read about people who believe they’ve been to Heaven. It’s entirely possible some of these deathbed experiences were completely due to a rush of endorphins. It’s somewhat comforting to know your final moments of life will be filled with good vibes rather than gut wrenching pain. But, how great would it be if there were actually a tiered afterlife filled with columns of light? It all depends on how you feel about flocks of roaming butterflies. Read these stories of Heaven and then retire to your study to think about your place in the universe.
Heaven is for Real is probably the most famous account of a visit to Heaven, and it comes to us from Colton Burpo, who was only three years old when he died on the operating table during a surgery, went to Heaven, and then returned with the knowledge of an unborn sister, Jesus' love of riding a rainbow colored horse across the cloud city of Heaven.
In 2015 Burpo reiterated his claims to Charisma News: "I know there has been a lot of talk about the truth of other heaven stories in the past few days. I just wanted to take a second and let everyone know that I stand by my story found in my book Heaven is for Real. I still remember my experience in Heaven."
Prophet Mboro, pastor and founder of Incredible Happenings Ministries, claims he visited Heaven one Easter where he was able to snap some selfies with Jesus on his Samsung Galaxy. Mboro also claims to have met Jesus's wife, which begs the question: are there weddings in Heaven? Before Mboro could post the photos on Facebook and prove his haters wrong, someone stole the phone from a local car wash. Of course they did.
Don Piper, who was pronounced clinically dead after a car crash in 1989, said he traveled to heaven. After dying in a four car pile up Piper found himself "standing at some magnificent gates surrounded by people [he] had known and loved in life." Piper knew he was in Heaven. But enough about these gates, does Heaven have awesome architecture? He told Bill O'Reilly, "There really are a lot of magnificent structures inside the gate. And at the pinnacle of a great hill beyond them is a bright light."
Carol Meyer was raised in the church, but it wasn't until she was in her 60s that she had the vision of Heaven that would solidify her faith. Meyer was suffering from a life threatening gastrointestinal disease when she found herself on the edge of forever. "As I was standing there, this incredible peace overtook me. There were no more earthly emotional holes in my spirit. I was completely whole. It was an incredible feeling.
This state of being is no doubt part of the scripture that there will be no tears or sorrow in Heaven. It was a very profound experience." She also allegedly saw a large angelic soldier surrounded by millions of butterflies.