Anderson Cooper is going to be embarrassing, I bet

Brace yourselves. The heaven brigade is going to get another whirl on the mass media carousel.

AC360° Special report Sunday

"To Heaven and Back" airs Sunday at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. E.T. Randi Kaye meets three people who were on the brink of death, when they say they left this world for another.

I’ll probably tune in to cringe. It’s good timing, though: after watching Anderson Cooper give attention to the silly people who claim to have gone to heaven, I’ll flip channels to watch The Walking Dead, which will be slightly more credible.


  1. Ogvorbis: Broken, failing, hurting. says

    Oh. Goody. Hallucinations brought on by chemical changes and/or oxygen deprivation presented as proof of heaven. I’ll put that on my ‘To Miss’ list right now.

  2. george gonzalez says

    If I forget to eat and my blood sugar gets below 60, I start seeing that white tunnel. It used to be nicely pentagonal-sided, but lately looks more like a crescent roll powdered with sugar. Yum. Looks a lot more appealing than sitting on clouds forever. Can I get on the show too?

  3. peptron says

    It happens to me all the time. Often, in the evening, I lay on my back, and then, for reasons science obviously cannot possibly understand, I lose awareness of my surroundings and enter another world. Therefore aliens.

  4. Acolyte of Sagan says

    It could be worse, you know. For the run-in to Christmas here in the U.K., Channel Five is treating (sic) us to a mini-series of five feature-length episodes of The Bible, a recent production which, if the trailers are anything to go by, has been made in the manner of a modern action thriller with all the bells and whistles; lots of explosions, CGI all over the place, main characters portrayed as action-hero’s, the bloody works.
    It’s almost a nailed on certainty that they’ll have given JC a catchphrase. Any suggestions (‘I’ll be back’ is too obvious, so….don’t)’?

  5. jnorris says

    I died once in 2006. EMT’s used electrical shocks to bring me back to life. I never saw Heaven or that light.

  6. Don Quijote says

    @7 Acolyte of Sagan;

    “I am what I am and that’s all that I am, I’m Jesús the saviour man.”

  7. says

    I really want to be on the show, and claim that I went to another world.
    “I almost died. I left my body and went to another world. I think it was Mars. Cold, dry and dust. I was as bored as hell. Then, I got better.”

  8. peptron says

    @9 Don Quijote & @7 Acolyte of Sagan:

    I am partial to:
    “Are you going to love one another, for Christ’s sake!?”

  9. sunsangnim says

    I experienced a somewhat similar hallucination while on salvia. It involved a sensation of floating through a tunnel and sensing some other consciousness. Although it was impressive, once I regained somewhat of a rational mind I knew it was due to chemicals in my brain. It proved to me once and for all that near death experiences were a total crock of shit.

    Around that time, I was also (during my sober, responsible hours) a caretaker for adults with cognitive impairments, including one who had brain damage from a botched suicide attempt. Simply interacting with such individuals provided me with at least anecdotal evidence that the mind is simply what the brain does, that there is no “ghost in the machine.” How does a dualist explain an individual who had a functioning rational intellect that ceased to exist after an accident? Even if they concede that the “ghost” must have a functioning machine to inhabit, at that point what use is the ghost?

  10. iknklast says

    My question would be, why didn’t they bring back souvenirs? If they’d gone no further than Nashville, they’d have picked up something for the kids, but a trip to heaven? Not even a stupid t-shirt.

  11. Acolyte of Sagan says

    Rich Woods
    29 November 2013 at 1:11 pm (UTC -6) Link to this comment

    @7, 9, 11:

    “Yippie ki yay, Messiah lover!”

    That’s the winner so far, I reckon. I know that Yippie ki yay’ came from another of Willis’ films, but he did become the Saviour of Mankind when he sacrificed himself to prevent Armageddon.

    Incidentally, Armageddon has, in my ever-so ‘umble opinion, probably the finest, vomit-inducing, all-American hero cliche* of all time (OK, the film is virtually one long cliche, but this one really stood out), coming right at the end as the surviving Shuttle pilot interrupts AJ and Gracie (Bruce’s character Harry Stamper’s daughter) reunion kiss, snaps off a crisp salute towards Gracie and delivers this beauty:
    “Colonel Willie Sharp, United States Air Force, ma’am, requesting permission to shake the hand of the daughter…(pause to convey emotions held heroically in check)…of the bravest man…(pause again to blink back the tears that weren’t actually welling in his eyes)…I ever met”.
    The film was almost as laugh-out loud funny as Mars Attacks, the difference being that Mars Attacks deliberately – and superbly – played it for laughs.

    *Yes, I know that cliche should have an acute accent over the e, but I’ve no idea where the little people who live in my computer (that is how they work, right?) keep the bloody things.

  12. MJKelleher, lurker in the dark says

    [OT] Acolyte of Sagan @15:
    “& eacute;” without the space gives you:

    Also Alt+0233


    The blurb says it’s Randi Kaye doing the interviews, not AC. Not that that makes the premise any better…

  13. David Marjanović says

    *Yes, I know that cliche should have an acute accent over the e, but I’ve no idea where the little people who live in my computer (that is how they work, right?) keep the bloody things.

    In the character map.

    In Windows, it’s carefully hidden in All Programs > Accessories > System Programs.

  14. Menyambal --- inesteemable says

    Character Map is a very good program to be familiar with.

    _Armageddon_ was wrong in many ways, but the worst was the bit with Bruce Willis and the timer. If the entire world was at stake, they should have set the bomb off manually in the first place, just to be positive it would work. Also, if the entire world was at stake, they shouldn’t have taken time for dramatic goodbyes.

    My parents used to take me to a Baptist church where the preacher man had died and come back to preach Jesus. If that creepy, cranky, hateful idiot was anything other than brain-damaged, I never saw it.

  15. John Horstman says

    Anyone who thinks “becasue Heaven/magic” is the best explanation for hallucinatory states has clearly never consumed psilocybin mushrooms, LSD, or DMT. This is part of why I am a strong proponent of psychoactive drug use: it can really help people internalize the fact that our perception/consciousness is materially, chemically based; heavily context-dependent; and therefore always biased.