Life After Life

[Continuing from the previous conversation Pseudo Spirituality on Apr 4, 2004]

Guruji was reading the morning paper. “Amazing news today,” he said. “A man came alive after being declared dead for 2 hours. The family was about getting ready for his final rituals when he woke up.”

I said that these kinds of incidents seem to happen to lot in India.

Guruji replied: “They are happening more frequently these days. In Mahabharata, Yudhisthira asked Bhishma Pitamah if he had seen anyone who came back from dead. After thinking for a moment, Bhishma said a long time back he had seen a child who came back after dying. Never after that. On the other hand in the last 50 years we have seen numerous such examples. May be it’s a tactic, to get people pay attention to the supernatural. I have seen 5 such people myself, even around here in Vraj.”

“Can yamadūtas (messengers of death) really make mistakes?”

“It’s a deliberate mistake, so that a common man who is completely materialistic starts to realize that there is something after death and all these [spiritual] things are not just figments of imagination. These stories do make one pause to think. In Gujarat an old lady came back after death. She asked Yamaraj (god of death) what should I do after going back? Yamaraj said whoever you bless will have a son. She has since blessed thousands of women and they all had boys. Now all these kids must be hearing her story from childhood, how she rose from dead and how they were born by her blessing. It creates a natural faith and respect for spirituality.”

“That’s true, Guruji,” I said. “I wonder why I don’t hear these kinds of stories in the US. May be they don’t publish them?”

Guruji said: “There have been many such cases there as well. Raymond Moody has written extensively about it, about near-death and after-death experiences. People there also wonder about these things.”