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A Review of ‘Saved by the Light’

by Vinita Agrawal

[box]Vinita Agrawal reviews the book ‘Saved by the Light’ by Dannion Brinkley, which she says is an intriguing confession of the various revelations that a man who died twice experienced. However, it is this very metaphysical nature of this book that also makes it difficult to endorse it, she opines.[/box]

Saved by the Light  saved-by-the-light
Dannion Brinkley with Paul Perry
With an introduction by Raymond Moody M.D.
The true story of a man who died twice and the profound revelations he received
Villard Books, New York 1994.

Deep inside most of us squirms a fear of the unknown, especially the fear of death – Death is a mysterious phenomenon – inexplicable, enigmatic and yet – inevitable. If Brinkley’s book is to be read and believed then the time has come to moor our endless speculations on what happens to us after we die because – hold your breath – here is Dannion Brinkley – a man who has ‘died’ twice and come alive each time! He describes his incredible experiences in his book titled “Saved by the Light”.

The first time Dannion ‘died’ was when a bolt of lightning struck him. It was so powerful that it melted the telephone in his hand. His soul spiralled into a new world filled with light and love. It told him that his purpose on earth was “to create spiritualistic capitalism”, and ordered him to return to earth to pursue his new goals.  The second time when his soul left his body (but returned to it again) was on the surgery table while he was undergoing a heart operation. After a series of heavenly experiences he was told ‘telepathically’ to go back once again.

In each paranormal incident, Brinkley admits to revelations by ‘Beings of Light’ that are simply amazing if they are true, brilliant if they are not.

In most cases a person who has undergone such bizarre experiences is vulnerable to callous ridicule and disbelief that the rest of us mere mortals are predisposed to make. No wonder, Brinkley’s defences are up right from the start of his book. Fortunately for him he has a trump-card up his sleeve in the form of visions he receives from the ‘great power’ – supposedly God.  Brinkley not only sees a review of his life but also a run of events that would happen in the future. Based on these visions, Brinkley is said to have predicted the coming to power of Ronald Reagan as President of USA in 1975, the war and strife in the Middle East some years later, the Chernobyl disaster in the 1980s and the economic earthquakes across the world, to name only a few. He describes these predictions in great detail in his book, a la Nostradamus!

Brinkley consciously avoids using adjectives to convey the extraordinary metaphysical transportations he (rather, his soul) made each time he died. He attempts to stick to a simple descriptive style, relying heavily on a set of carefully chosen and original metaphors, which are clearly for the reader’s benefit. For example, he compares fields of energy to “rivers and lakes the way you would see them from an airplane” and the idea of going back to earth after having experienced the freedom of the spirit “as confining as living on the head of a pin.”

His book glorifies the good in man. Forgiveness, according to Brinkley, is next to Godliness. Unselfish service to our brethren and selfless love ought to be the driving goals in our lives. No wonder then, that he dedicates his book to volunteers who perform the invaluable work of hospice. He himself is presently dedicated to the task of creating de-stressing centres where people could learn to set their spirits free. This he says is a mission assigned to him by the wonderful ‘Beings of Light’ who also gave him visions of how to realise these centres.

The book beckons us to abide by it even as tenets of our preconditioned minds feel provoked to challenge its every word. Ironically though, while this book is intriguing because of its metaphysical nature, it is sometimes difficult to endorse for those very reasons. Nevertheless, it makes for a fascinating read and one we might as well make as long as we are alive! After death, the truth will be ours anyway…

Vinita Agrawal is a Delhi-based writer and poet and has been published in international print and online journals.

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