What is Real?

What is Real?

Model used for illustrative purposes

A guest post written by Mary Lou MacKenzie

The popularity of the current best seller, Proof of Heaven by Dr. Eben Alexander, indicates a yearning and interest that most of us have for a deeper understanding of what constitutes eternal LIFE. No matter how full ones life is here and now, most of us wonder at some time or another what eternal life feels like.

Whether or not one accepts what Dr. Alexander experienced as valid, he certainly poses some interesting questions that make us wonder. He relates a journey that he experienced while everyone else around him saw him as in a coma. As he expressed it, he experienced an awareness that life is in our conscience and not in the body. For instance, he states on page 76, “…I understood that I was part of the Divine and that nothing – absolutely nothing – could ever take that away. The (false) suspicion that we can somehow be separated from God is the root of every form of anxiety in the universe…” He also felt an overwhelming sense of unconditional love.

There are certainly many Biblical statements that support Alexander’s experience. In Romans 8:6 Paul writes, “…to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” In Hebrews 11:5, written possibly by a woman authoress, it states, “By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death;” And the discoverer and founder of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, has stated in her seminal work, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, “Life is real, and death is the illusion.”

Many years ago, I experienced something that made all these quotations ring true. We had a kitty, my son’s favorite kitty, who had not eaten for some time and appeared to be close to passing on. Money at that time was in very short supply so going to a vet did not seem to be an option. I had prayed fervently for this loving kitty, but to no avail. One morning in my attempt to not feel the approaching “pangs of death,” I began to look up citations in the Bible and in Eddy’s works about death. Passages like the ones quoted above began to take on greater significance than ever before, and I became immersed in them. After several hours of study, I heard a meowing at the back door. There was this kitty, well and full of life, not death. This same kitty lived to what many would refer to as a “ripe old age” and brought many years of joy to our family, especially our son.

It does seem that through these experiences, a mortal sense of life becomes less and less real to us and, as Dr. Alexander found, that the spiritual sense of life becomes ever so much more real.

About the author

Guest We are pleased to present Notes from the Field authors, who are assistant committees and church members in the Southern California region; and Notes from The Mother Church authors, who are Committees from the United States and around the world, as well as the Federal Committee on Publication office.


  1. Marilyn says

    Thank you, Mary Lou, for this wonderful reminder that life is eternal and so much more than we actually experience here.

    I had a chance to read this book and was inspired by the author’s glances into the next experience that he writes about. and that amazing feeling of being loved unconditionally, knowing that it includes everyone one of us.

  2. Tracy says

    What a beautiful post. It’s comforting to know that others are learning what Christian Science teaches – that nothing can separate us from the love of God, not even comas or sick kitties. Thank you for sharing this, Mary Lou!

  3. Chuck says

    Thanks, Mary Lou, for this inspiring post and the kitty’s healing. I also enjoyed Dr. Alexander’s book. I liked the summary of what he learned in the one word, “Love. Love is , without a doubt, the basis of everything.” We all know that innately but it is uplifting to hear another unique experience confirming that.

  4. Virginia says

    Thank you, Mary Lou,
    I too enjoyed that book; it left me with the most exalted feeling of being safe, joyful, peaceful int the arms of eternal Love. It made me so realize that our real nature is always present, right here and now, in unchanging intelligence and perfection. We exist at one with God. Our only and real existence is unchanging good, freedom, and bliss; and we can be aware of it right now.

  5. Pamela says

    Thanks Mary Lou, I am axious to read Dr. Alexander’s book as I have heard so much about it. He apparently saw what we have known through our study of Christian Science, that life is eternal. Christ Jesus came to show us that life is eternal, and more and more people are learning this one way or another. Thanks for this post.

  6. Patricia says

    We, in our famiy have found Dr. Alexander’s book a joy to read and share.

  7. says

    Many thanks, Mary Lou, for reminding us about this book, and for your insights on the subject of life. How freeing it is to realize that the Life that is God, divine Love, cannot be extinguished, not even partially, and never for one instant. That Love is constantly providing us with life.

  8. says

    I just met a woman who has had the same experience as Dr. Alexander. After an automobile accident, she was in a coma for a lengthy time (two months or more). Her experience paralells his in almost every detail. She is now studying Mary Baker Eddy’s book, Science and Health, because she says it is the only teaching she has found that supports what she experienced.

  9. Rhonda says

    Thank you for this article. I had not heard of the book before. Thank you too Evelyn for the additional confirmation of what Dr. Alexander experienced as valid. It all coincides with the truth about life and heaven that Mary Baker Eddy discovered and wrote about in her book “Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures” many years ago.

  10. Kathy says

    Thank you so very much Mary Lou. What a wonderful healing and these truths are available to everyone.

  11. says

    Thanks so much for this post, Mary Lou. I have found Eben Alexander’s book of interest. And I especially appreciate your own experience of realizing in a very practical way that we can challenge death through prayer.