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Heaven Is For Real: Near Death Experience Made Into A Movie


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No doubt many of you NDE aficionados are familiar with this story which has now become a movie in 2014. Currently 48% on the 

Tomatometer (77% of the audience liked it) and 5.6 on the IMDB, it does seem to play well to it's main audience:

 

When doctors told preacher Todd Burpo his four-year-old son was going to die from a burst appendix he railed against God for taking him to heaven too soon.

What he did not expect was that little Colton would not only survive his near-death experience on the operating table but would come back full of stories of the angels and rainbows he had seen while unconscious.

He told his parents that while visiting heaven he met John the Baptist and the Virgin Mary, and sat at Jesus’s knee.

His extraordinary claims have now been turned into a film, Heaven is for Real, which has become a huge word of mouth hit across America and is due to open in Britain next week.

 It was only when the little boy described in detail watching his father as he shouted in despair at God in a hotel anteroom, something he could not have known about, that Mr Burpo began to believe he was dealing with more than a little boy’s drug-induced hallucinations.

Colton went on to recognise a photograph of a great-grandfather he had never met and talked about a sister he said told him she had "died in their mother’s tummy".

The family had never discussed the baby his mother Sonja lost to a miscarriage a year before Colton’s birth, or told him about his father's rant against God as he lay on the operating table.

These details helped to convince them that Colton’s claims were true, and Mr Burpo went on to write a book about his experiences.

Also called Heaven is for Real, it became an unlikely bestseller, spending three years at the top of the charts. Now, 10 years after Colton’s brush with death on a hospital operating table, it has been made into a film starring Greg Kinnear as Todd Burpo.

Opening on Easter weekend, the movie was an instant hit, taking $22.5 million (£13.4 million) in its first three days and easily overshadowing Transcendence, a blockbuster starring Johnny Depp which had been expected to dominate the box offices.

Not surprisingly, the film appears to have struck a particular chord in the Bible Belt of the American Mid-West, where it has played to rapturous and often tearful crowds who seem to view Colton’s claims as gospel.

But critics have warned against taking the little boy’s particularly childlike visions of riding a rainbow-coloured horse in heaven while being serenaded by angels singing Jesus Loves You too literally.

He also described Jesus as having “brown hair, a brown beard, a very bright smile and his eyes were just beautiful sea blue”.

In her review of the book, Susan Jacoby, who billed herself as “The Spirited Atheist” on her blog for the Washington Post, said: "Only in America could a book like this be classified as non-fiction.

“At age four, an inability to distinguish between fantasy and reality is charming. But among American adults, widespread identification with the mind of a ­preschooler is scary.”

Even some members of Mr Burpo’s own Baptist congregation in their home town of Imperial, Nebraska, were initially wary of his claims, something he found particularly upsetting.

But the family has now got used to dealing with scepticism, and continue to deny that they or anyone else coached Colton to come up with his extraordinary story.

Mr Burpo told the Huffington Post: “Colton knew things that no four-year-old could have known, things no Sunday School teacher would have taught him.

This is not a Christian film with a whitewashed easy story where everything turns out fine and life is easy. This is our real life. It's not fiction at all, this is real and I want people to know that and be given hope”.

Colton himself, now a 14-year-old would-be musician, continues to believe fervently that he died and went briefly to heaven while surgeons fought for his life, and uses his experiences to comfort children suffering from terminal illnesses.

He says he is a big fan of the film, although its makers haven’t quite captured the glories he has seen.

They do a good job but they haven’t experienced it like I have,” he said. “Heaven is just so much better than that.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/10793543/Story-of-four-year-olds-near-death-experience-transfixes-America.html

 

 

I suppose my main questions would be, what would a believing LDS person expect in the details of an NDE? Are there some details that would seem to preclude the reality of a reported NDE?  Or any vision/dream of the afterlife and the people existing therein....

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No doubt many of you NDE aficionados are familiar with this story which has now become a movie in 2014. Currently 48% on the 

Tomatometer (77% of the audience liked it) and 5.6 on the IMDB, it does seem to play well to it's main audience:

 

 

I suppose my main questions would be, what would a believing LDS person expect in the details of an NDE? Are there some details that would seem to preclude the reality of a reported NDE?  Or any vision/dream of the afterlife and the people existing therein....

What I believe about NDE's, is that different people see common things...the differences, or the things noticed that we believe that confirms our belief systems.
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the differences, or the things noticed that we believe that confirms our belief systems.

 

Could one or both of the following be true?

 

1) God wouldn't lie to us so only the ones that match the one true belief system could be real.

2) God comforting us in a way we would understand.

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Could one or both of the following be true?

 

1) God wouldn't lie to us so only the ones that match the one true belief system could be real.

2) God comforting us in a way we would understand.

I like choice #2...since NDE's are so short, it would be counter productive to overwhelm with too much information.
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No doubt many of you NDE aficionados are familiar with this story which has now become a movie in 2014. Currently 48% on the 

Tomatometer (77% of the audience liked it) and 5.6 on the IMDB, it does seem to play well to it's main audience:

 

 

I suppose my main questions would be, what would a believing LDS person expect in the details of an NDE? Are there some details that would seem to preclude the reality of a reported NDE?  Or any vision/dream of the afterlife and the people existing therein....

 

Latter-day-Saint folk lore is replete with stories of NDE's and most of them I have read generally follow this experience.  The differences I have noted are generally reflective of personal understanding and differences.  The core, for the most part is consistent.

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