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Interesting. It's quite striking that spirits in the West were asserting the truth of reincarnation at such an early date. Suppose for a moment that there were not spirits and this was all stuff that was in the mediums' heads. Wouldn't they have tended to assert the truth of a Western-style (Christian) afterlife? This really does give credence to the belief in reincarnation, which I personally hold.

I for one don't see the idea of reincarnation as rational at all. I don't see why it should be puzzling either that some people are more proficient than others in certain areas. I also hate how reincarnation is so strongly associated with karma, and if you look at someplace like India, where it's so widely believed in, it seems to me it's used so politically. "The reason why you're a poor miserable Untouchable is that you did lots of bad things in your previous life, too bad, and the reason why I'm rich and powerful is because I was so wonderful in my previous life."

I also just finished reading, "The Seat of the Soul" by Gary Kuvak. While he made some powerful observations about human nature, and seems to mean well, I found the whole thing very depressing. The idea that the average person, who I believe tries to be decent a human being, has to endlessly learn and re-learn lessons over lifetimes, because of what are only minor slip-ups in character, and harsh circumstances that led to bad decisions, ugh, I just find that notion hellish. Hopefully if reincarnation does exist, the whole thing's strictly voluntary--and please count me out.

Michael,

You say reincarnation either is or isn't and there is no middle ground. Moreover, you assume a certain definition for "soul."
I know you have discussed this before and that ideas have to be recycled over time, but let me again quote Frederic W. H. Myers in his after-death communication through Geraldine Cummins:

“While I was on earth, I belonged to a group-soul, but its branches and the spirit – which might be compared to the roots – were in the invisible. Now, if you would understand psychic evolution, this group-soul must be studied and understood. For instance, it explains many of the difficulties that people will assure you can be removed only by the doctrine of reincarnation. You may think my statement frivolous, but the fact that we do appear on earth to be paying for the sins of another life is, in a certain sense, true. It is our life and yet not our life.”

Myers went on to explain that a soul belonging to the group of which he was part lived a previous life and built for him a framework for his own earthly life. The spirit – the bond of the group soul – manifests, he said, many times on earth.

“We are all of us distinct,” he
continued, “though we are influenced by others of our community on the various planes of being.” He further explained that a group soul might contain twenty souls, a hundred souls, or a thousand souls.

“When your Buddhist speaks of the cycle of birth, of man’s continual return to earth, he utters but a half-truth,” Myers went on. “And often a half-truth is more inaccurate than an entire misstatement. I shall not live again on earth, but a new soul, one who will join our group, will shortly enter into the pattern of karma I have woven for him on earth.”

Myers likened the soul to a spectator caught within the spell of some drama outside of its actual life, perceiving all the consequences of acts, moods, and thoughts of a kindred soul. He further pointed out that there are an infinite variety of conditions in the invisible world and that he made no claim to being infallible. He called it a “general rule” based on what he had learned and experienced on the Other Side.

Silver Birch, the supposedly advanced soul (probably a group soul) who spoke through the entranced Maurice Barbanell of England for nearly 50 years said: “There is reincarnation, but not in the sense in which it is generally expounded." He went on to explain that the individual personality on earth is a small part of the individuality to which he or she belongs. He likened it to a diamond with its many facets, pointing out that the personality on earth is but one facet of the diamond.

“… there are what you call ‘group souls,’ a single unity with facets which have spiritual relationships that incarnate at different times, at different places, for the purpose of equipping the larger soul for its work,” Silver Birch further explained.

Personally, I don't know what to believe. I reject Super ESP when it comes to its usual application to mediumistic messages, but I am inclined to accept some kind of Super ESP relative to reincarnation. I conclude that it is beyond human comprehension and that is why there has been so much conflict in mediumistic messages relative to reincarnation.

"You say reincarnation either is or isn't and there is no middle ground. Moreover, you assume a certain definition for 'soul.'"

Kardec said it, not me.

The "Myers" and Silver Birch comments are definitely another way of looking at it. Like you, I don't know what to believe, though I incline more toward reincarnation than I used to.

"I also hate how reincarnation is so strongly associated with karma, and if you look at someplace like India, where it's so widely believed in, it seems to me it's used so politically."

True, but it's possible to separate the two concepts, and to see new incarnations as opportunities for growth rather than as punishments or rewards.

"The idea that the average person, who I believe tries to be decent a human being, has to endlessly learn and re-learn lessons over lifetimes ... I just find that notion hellish."

Suppose I were to rewrite this sentence as follows: "The idea that a person who has taken a trip to Europe should also have to take a trip to South America and another trip to Asia and even more trips to other destinations ... I just find that notion hellish."

It doesn't sound quite so hellish when stated that way, does it? When separated from karma and viewed as a way of broadening one's experiences, reincarnation starts to look a little more desirable, at least to me.

the idea of karma is often simplified in the mainstream media. 'you reaped what you sowed' is oversimplified. also, when u think of lessons as series of rewards and punishments then you're actually missing the point.

think of it this way:

a flow of energy goes thru a series of stages- and each stage, that energy is changed by something (cause), and then the energy in turn causes another change (effect). so now, if the energy is affected in some way as the result, that energy is likely to favor that effect and would lead to changes that would further affect the energy in a similar way.

so, as a human being, you are not born out of nothing- but you derived from biological, physical and environmental composites. for example, if say your parents smoke and drink while you were developing, that will have negative effect on you. and as you're born, you're given the sum of all the effects caused by numerous factors (cause and effect)- now that you're here. it's your choice to do what you can with what you're given- although people who come from negative background tend to get reinforced to follow that pattern, and positive background will reinforce positive pattern.

now, the idea of karma is not that you're fated to be certain ways or act certain ways. All these causes made you who you are NOW, but it's what you CHOOSE to do from here now on that will have the most meaningful impact to not only you, but all living things around you. That's why some people would thrive despite of adversity, and some would fail despite all the good things in their lives. from that point now, your actions will be the cause of not just you or your family, but of everything in this universe.

for some people, their actions enable great changes, and for some, their actions changes very little. however, these little changes will eventually lead to great changes....so you can think of it as coming to this earth over and over and learning the same lesson over and over- or you can think that for every life you CHOOSE to do something over and over, or just do something slightly different- but eventually you would garner wisdom that you would need so you can move on to the next lesson.

karma doesnt force you to do anything; your action does. karma is just a term that define the whole relationship between cause and effect and your will within all this.

the so-called 'the untouchables' is just a label given by people who chose not to show compassion to help them so they would feel that their lack of charity is justified. but as the result of their selfishness and indifference, they've also become the cause of a series of chain reactions that would probably not favor them in their spiritual development.

I don't think it was just mediums back in the day, I'm trying to dig it out but apparently there are statistics that show NDE'rs are more likely to believe in reincarnation than our average person. Of course, that doesn't mean all NDE experiencers feel the same way, though.

"...ugh, I just find that notion hellish. Hopefully if reincarnation does exist, the whole thing's strictly voluntary--and please count me out."

Posted by: Kathleen | October 23, 2010 at 03:32 PM

I agree.
It would appear that the idea of a "hell" has changed (for Christians in the last few hundred years).
I find the idea of being sent for eternity to an everlasting hell impossible to understand.
I find Kardec's dogmatic views equally hard to stomach. There seems to be a lack of compassion. And a possibility that there might be no end to the infinity of "lives"
Not my cup of tea!

I think the CORTs clearly show that there is no such thing like a "divine justice". See the discussion of karma in the book "Life Before Life", by Jim Tucker.

Off topic:

Tom Harrison, son of the materialisation medium, Minnie Harrison, has passed to the Spirit World aged 92.

He chronicled his experiences in the book:

"Life After Death - Living Proof: A Lifetime's Experiences of Physical Phenomena and Materialisations Through the Mediumship of Minnie Harrison" available through Amazon.

I read Tom Harrison's book and reviewed it on this blog a few years ago. It was very interesting and carried, I thought, a ring of truth even though the seances weren't conducted under scientifically controlled conditions. It's hard to see how Minnie Harrison, terminally ill with cancer and very weak, could have pulled off the large-scale fraud that would be required in any "normal" explanation. It's also hard to imagine what motive she could have had.

On the other hand, photos of the alleged "spirits" don't look terribly convincing.

Still, on balance I think Minnie was probably a genuine medium.

Arthur Findlay on his books "On the edge of the etheric" and "Where two worlds meet", dismiss the idea of reincarnation (suposed spirits told him at the seances with medium J.Sloan). General confusion!

Maybe Tom Harrison will be making some appearances around today's physical circles in Montcabirol, France and the Felix Circle in Germany.

That is, if those circles are legitimate. I won't know until I investigate them myself. :-)

I see from Veronica Keen's blog that David Fontana just died too. It will be interesting to see if he starts coming through and reporting his impressions.....

MP wrote:

On the other hand, photos of the alleged "spirits" don't look terribly convincing.

In 1993 Tom Harrison wrote in the Ark Review that he took the photographs using infra-red photography. "I was to activate the lighting equipment through the glass Wratten filter. As the Wratten filter is extremely deep ruby red in colour and the light was an instantaneous millisecond flash, it was quite impossible to see anything with the naked eye but we were very thrilled by the eventual result."

He also added: "I would never dispute the right of anyone to make such valid comments about such very unusual, rare and unique photographs, taken by myself in complete darkness with very basic and unsophisticated infra-red equipment which was available in those days (1948), but I would only hope that they would accept my solemn affirmation that such was not the case and they are all genuine photographs of ectoplasmic spirit manifestations - and I still have the original glass plates in my possession for anyone to see."

Maybe Tom Harrison will be making some appearances around today's physical circles in Montcabirol, France and the Felix Circle in Germany.

That is, if those circles are legitimate. I won't know until I investigate them myself. :-)

I would be very surprised if Tom Harrison or David Fontana were able to communicate anything through the circles you mention as I have never read any evidence of survival given through them.

Trumpets flying around and alleged ectoplasm displays are not evidence of survival.

Arthur Findlay on his books "On the edge of the etheric" and "Where two worlds meet", dismiss the idea of reincarnation (suposed spirits told him at the seances with medium J.Sloan). General confusion!

Why 'supposed spirits'?

Arthur Findlay set out the evidence which convinced him. Those of us who have done similar investigations have reached the same conclusion i.e. that life is continuous.

"It would appear that the idea of a "hell" has changed (for Christians in the last few hundred years).
I find the idea of being sent for eternity to an everlasting hell impossible to understand." - jack

-----------------------------

Reincarnation sounds like hell to me. I don't buy it. The story humans have made up to explain the evidence doesn't make sense to me; and as far as what psychics and mediums say about it? I think a big part of the message gets garbled up with the beliefs and culture of the messenger. Something else is going on. I think it's got something to do with the reciever/transmitter theory of the brain, and that "oneness and connectedness" thing of heaven.

"Which of the doctrines hitherto propounded can solve these problems?"

U ask many questions,let me link this crude representational video based on the work of the author and medium Jozef Rulof that might answer some of those questions

Reincarnation from the start of human life:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0weGgVD8XY&feature=player_embedded#!

Creation of The hereafter and reincation:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FxG80awshME&feature=related

I believe the theory of PanSpermia might explain the later part of the vid where evolution carries itself from planet to planet.

The other videos might answer some of the other questions u have.
===================================

In short people reincarnate much more then a single time or even 100 times,millions or more lifes have been spent building up temperament,character,everything which makes you:you.Reincarnation is the great Justice Of the universe.Cause and effect means everyone will make right what they did wrong,karma will mean mayority that killed will give Life back.Many Souls were born at a different time at the birth of human cels,hence the different phase for everyone in regards to biological evolution,intelligence,cause and effect,etc.This only means they are at a different step of the ladder,eventually everyone will evolve to the higher spheres,from darkness to light,from chaos to harmony.People reincarnate against their wills,whether they want to or not the universe,nature has laws that will bring balance back to the chaos humanity sets to it.

*Note
The second video might probably be more relevant to your questions.

Tonight, Wednesday, on Coast-to-Coast AM:

"Reincarnation & Auras (Wed 10-27)

"Two of the world's leading experts on auras and human energy, Barbara Martin and Dimitri Moraitis will discuss the mechanics of reincarnation and the implications of past lives on this life and our future lives."

ry volume The Spirits' Book (full text online) collects answers given by a variety of trance mediums to philosophical and theological questions. It makes interesting reading even today.
One of the main points raised by the purported spirit communicators is

I very much do believe in reincarnation it seems to me that this (like many other spiritual concepts) is one that we cannot fully grasp or understand with our physically based mind. Our physical minds like to think and conceptualize in terms of 'black and white' and such concepts do not lend themselves to being put into defined boxes.

Its trying to understand something that occurs outside of the physical realm with our minds that are part and parcel 'of' the physical realm.

This certainly doesn't mean that we can't ponder such issues and even come to some semblance of belief and/or understanding regarding them...but I've learned myself to simply accept that perhaps while I'm physically based, certain concrete answers to my most burning questions just might have to go unanswered.

I've had numerous conversations with my deceased loved ones...undoubtedly a very subjective experience, however one that I believe has given me some 'glimpses' of answers on this subject.

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