Customer Review

253 of 276 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A spiritual journey from a doctor's point of view, May 3, 2012
This review is from: To Heaven and Back: The True Story of a Doctor's Extraordinary Walk with God (Paperback)
This book is a thoughtful memoir and spiritual journey by a remarkable woman. The author's medical training and experiences served, not to distance herself from a seemingly incomprehensible God who makes people suffer, but to draw her and her family closer to God by seeing His work in their lives.

Sometimes, I think it is much harder for people with a scientific turn of mind and training in the sciences and medicine to believe in God when all education is pretty much "it all happened by chance" and is indeed structured to teach that chance is the only reason things happen. Believe me, I went to school for 9 years after high school and all of that training was science and a lot was overlapping with the science that medical doctors study, because I studied biology, biochemistry and immunology. So I resonated with this book and Dr. Neal's journey--especially when she writes that "science and spirituality were assumed to be incompatible."

Interestingly, the description of drowning (the author nearly drowned in a river in Chile) is exactly what a friend of mine described to me had happened to him as a child. The patients who describe their spiritual experiences, rather than embarrass Dr. Neal, help her to see God is present and working in all of our lives. She keeps her eyes wide open and her faith becomes stronger, not weaker, in the face of many tragedies.

If you yourself are asking "Who is God, what is He, is there a God and how do I form a relationship with God?" this book could be an inspiring starting point. It is gripping, the stories are real-life and huge. The author really delves into the meaning of her actions, her struggles with career and family, in the problem of trying to live up to the fiction "you can do it ALL (and do it well)" and where God fits into a busy professional career. If you are struggling with issues like this, especially if you are a mom who works outside the home with a career and is finding life becoming overwhelming and not fulfilling in some way, this book may resonate with you, too. Recommended.
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Comments

Tracked by 4 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 14 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 18, 2012 12:36:35 PM PDT
I.A. says:
Is there a blog or online chat group for over-educated believers? lol. I'm really beginning to think there are more of us than we know. I have a Ph.D in Physiology, and did a Fellowship at the #1 Medical School in the world (as ranked by U.S. News and World). It would be nice to meet like minded friends, who understand what it's like on the academic side as well. Thanks. GB

Posted on Aug 18, 2012 2:05:36 PM PDT
I'm not aware of such a group. Atheism is a sort of defacto intellectual requirement these days in some circles, so that admitting to Christianity or other faith makes for problems as it goes against the popular grain. For that reason, groups and blogs would be too open and expose their members to possible problems where they work.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 19, 2012 6:27:54 PM PDT
I.A. says:
Maybe, but we could use avatars. Anyway, I do have a handful of precious friends who are both bright and believers, so I'm very grateful. Thanks for the reply.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 20, 2012 3:18:24 AM PDT
Physiology was the toughest course I took in undergrad--amazing study. I did immunology in grad school. So you must have some great academic chops.

I didn't meet any believers in grad school, and wasn't one myself. That came later. My late husband was incredibly bright and we had the most exciting discussions. In fact, that's the last thing we ever did, have a very in-depth discussion out of Corinthians. I know a few others--in fact met them on Amazon, but very few. But I know they are out there. Perhaps we need a website, as you suggest, and of course, AVATARS.....great idea.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 5, 2013 1:42:33 PM PDT
ghudd says:
you are educated beyond your intelligence. You are simply a nut

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 5, 2013 1:46:21 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on Jun 6, 2013 8:29:03 AM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 5, 2013 4:20:02 PM PDT
I.A. says:
As you predicted, Joanna, the kool-aid drinking atheist found us and are slinging venom. Can we form a private group with Amazon or Facebook? I'm not the best at social networking, but I do believe this would be worth the time and effort to set it up. I would like to see a transcript of the "Corinthian sessions," as you put it. Also, since you weren't a believer in grad school, the others probably stayed in the closet. I was a Christian all through my education out of spite if nothing else. I refused to by the party line and become an east-coast literati atheist just because I moved out there. I would almost have more respect for an atheist from Oklahoma, for instance, than (yawn) the predictable ones you meet in certain requisite circles. GB

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 5, 2013 5:15:12 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 5, 2013 5:18:11 PM PDT
You can follow me on Twitter (jayelldee) --that may provide the best way to start up a discussion group. As to Kool-Aid drinkers, well, this is nothing, really. The most amazing people are on the Politics Forum and there is a particularly interesting person who posts--alias starts with ZOMG... the quality and thoughtfulness inbued in each post is nothing short of astounding.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 6, 2013 8:50:05 AM PDT
I.A. says:
It's a good thought, but "tweets" don't really allow us to say much of substance. I will certainly follow you though, although I would like something more substantial as well. ?

Posted on Jun 6, 2013 12:23:39 PM PDT
ghudd says:
Joanna since you are so self proclaimed bright, why not read the source of truth about heaven and that being the only reliable one, the Bible. Folks like this that say they've been to heaven is silly at best and demonic at worst.
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Joanna Daneman
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Location: USA

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