If you went to church as a child you won't forget the sermons of what happens when we die; we come face to face with our maker. Scientists, however, have a different theory. The medical community is clear about this; the moment your heart stops beating you are in the first stage of death, in essence you are clinically dead. Although scientists do agree if there is enough oxygen in the brain, there is no brain damage and major organs are also alive even if you are clinically dead.
During the second stage of death is when the cells of the body begin to degenerate while the organs begin to shut down. With the advances in medicine, people are able to be resuscitated and brought back to life. Time and time again, patients are able to recall having out-of-body experiences, even so far as to share their personal experiences of what they heard and "saw" while being technically dead.
Now science is trying to figure out what really happens when you die.
His parents Todd and Sonja Burpo initially thought the boy was fighting the flu, waiting a couple of days before rushing him to the hospital.
Doctors gave the family a prognosis they were not expecting, Colton needed surgery.
"It was tough seeing your body look lifeless when he was a very vibrant child," Sonja recalls.
Colton was rushed to surgery while he screamed for his dad.
Todd, who is also a pastor, found himself alone in a room. He admits he felt mad at God.
"I said, 'God after all I have done for you, now you are going to take my kid?'" he remembers.
About an hour and a half later, Colton still wanted to be with his dad. When the nurses brought the father and son together, Colton's first words were "Dad, did you know I almost died?"
Todd said it took months before he actually took the time to listen to what his son wanted to share with him.
Colton claims the first person he saw in heaven was none other than Jesus himself, donning a white robe with a purple sash.
The boy shared with his dad that Jesus had markers on him.
Believing he was referring to coloring markers, Todd asked his son to clarify.
He spoke of red markers and showed them as being on the palms of the hands.
A couple of months later, Colton verified with Todd that he had a grandfather named Pop.
He told his father he found Pop to be really nice.
He reminded Todd of all the fun things they use to do together. Todd asked Colton how he knew about Pop and he replied, "Well, he told me."
But Todd wasn't convinced so he showed his son a photo of his grandfather.
Colton recognized the man in the photo as the one he had spoken to.
Sonja had a similar experience with her son when he reminded her he had two sisters.
Sonja had a miscarriage of a little girl, something the family had never shared with the boy.
Colton not only described what his sister looked like, but had a message for his mom.
"She's just waiting for you guys to come to heaven," he revealed.
Colton said Jesus told him he had to go back.
The boy admitted to his father he didn't actually want to go back.
Still, Colton shared that Jesus told him he was answering his dad's prayers.
"I remember that prayer. That irreverent, disrespectful, that screaming God-prayer," Todd admits. "It's like, he's answering THAT prayer?"
Colton claims, "Heaven is for real and you are going to love it."
Among his vision, Colton recalls how everyone in heaven has wings, got to meet angels, and saw a rainbow hued horse.
In 2010, Todd published "Heaven is for Real."
It was written with Lynn Vincent, Sarah Palin's ghostwriter.
The book was on for 59 weeks (non-consecutive weeks) on The New York Time's best-seller list.
In April 2014, the film by the same name was released. It starred Greg Kinnear and Margo Martindale.
Still, there are plenty of people, including Christians who question both Todd's and Colton's claim.
For one, the boy was never clinically dead.
His father is a pastor, therefore, the imagery and description of heaven can be attributed to what the child heard growing up.
Furthermore, in his book Todd uses his son's example of Christian love to preach that the only way to reach salvation is by loving Jesus.
Christians make up only 31 percent of the world population.
In his book, Todd admits his son never died but reasons it must have been a similar experience as those in the Bible when certain figures were taken into heaven for a revelation.
In the book Todd said Colton described Jesus as a white man with blue eyes.
If we look at history, Jesus was a Mediterranean Jew, not European.
Dr. David Kyle Johnson, Ph.D., is an associate professor of philosophy at King’s College in Pennsylvania.
He believes the brain is malleable, able to shape and influence with the right amount of creativity.
"And like a story that changes the more it is told, the more we remember something, the more that memory is apt to change," Dr. Johnson says.
Still, near death experiences is an area the scientific community wants to study further.
Patients in near death experiences recall seeing their bodies.
They can tell doctors what they saw and heard while they were suspended, hovering over their bodies.
Dr. Johnson says to take Colton's story with caution.
He was three when he had the surgery, was under anesthetics, and didn't begin to fully expand on his experience until months later.
Dr. Johnson believes he has a more plausible explanation of Colton's recollection.
"Colton had a dream while under anesthesia that he initially forgot (as we often do with dreams) but then eventually remembered—a dream that was highly revised and confabulated due to hundreds of hours of leading questions posed by his parents, reporters and journalists," he wrote for Psychology Today.
Source: Life Buzz