The Secret of Past Lives: 04 ►Research and Findings: Rebirth is a Certainty

Published: 11.08.2017

The concept of rebirth and an analytical study of it, gives enough opportunity to think and research about it. If in this birth we are Hindus, Indian, a man, in the previous birth we could well have been a Christian, an European and a woman. With this knowledge how can we sow seeds of distrust or behave immorally such that it presents a problem in the next birth? If a man in power could think that he may be born an animal, an untouchable or a common man in his next birth, his behavior and manner of interaction may undergo a sea change. He may, in this life, think about others and maybe be more humane. If he understands the connection between his conduct and the position in which he would be born in the next birth, he may improve his conduct. Thinking thus makes one's perspective more humane and inspires us to live by it so that the next birth will be better off.

As more and more cases of those who can recall their previous birth comes to fore and one can find substantiating evidence for their recollections, the idea of rebirth can no longer be ignored. Under such conditions, the contention of the scientists of the last generation that there is no soul stands negated. Psychiatrists agree that our existence is characterized by the presence of the soul. However, at some point they say, our existence will cease to be. This is not acceptable         

Those scientists, who study matter, know that every substance has a few basic qualities that cannot be changed. By mixing them we can change their form and shape. Changes that involve a change from say colour to taste, fragrance to taste, taste to form, or form to touch cannot be made. Even though they can change in their shape and form, they will retain some of their essential features. Two types of tastes can mix together to create a third taste. Two types of aromas can mix to create a third, but essentially the changes executed will remain either in taste of aroma. They cannot bring about a change in form or colour. Even if with some special procedure some changes are made, yet matter will remain inert, it cannot be infused with life. Atoms have their own properties but nowhere do they evince life.

The brain is definitely sensitive to feeling but its cells are not sensitive by themselves. If they were, then even after death they would continue to feel. Vibrations of sound and light are basic. So is the brain cell. The experience that is generated by their interaction cannot be viewed as the property of matter. All the arguments presented so far which negate the presence of the soul are losing ground. That consciousness is the result of certain permutation and combination of some juices and chemicals, was an argument that supported atheists and built good arguments. But one cannot deny that the fundamental trait of matter can never be changed and if this is so how can insensitive cells become full of emotions? It has not been possible, so far, to infuse life into any combination of matter and induce consciousness.

Though there are different ideas regarding death, there is agreement in that death is not the end of life. Accordingly, some religions believe in life after death, while some others believe that on death, life goes to sleep forever and at the end of creation, rises again. The mortality °f the body and the immortality of the soul have been accepted by many religions. It is the basis and essence of Indian philosophy.

The theory of rebirth reiterates that man is born again after death. According to Indian philosophy rebirth is connected to our deeds, that is, 'Karma'. People who do not get instant reward/ punishment according to their deeds have to take another birth where they have to experience the result of the actions in their previous birth. Quite often it is the fear of rebirth that keeps people away from indulging in bad deeds. It instead, makes them try to do noble deeds. People who believe in rebirth always take care and remain alert about their actions. They don't regret if they are not rewarded in this birth even if they have been good and righteous.

Scientists believe that what stands proved in laboratory, alone is truth. What cannot be proved is false. Because consciousness cannot be presented in the laboratory, so it was announced that all there is to it is the body and on death, nothing remains. According to this theory man is something like a walking-talking living being (like a plant) that grows, withers and finally dies out. This idea cannot be called a theory. There is some effect of the being's action on its character and consciousness. The manner in which rebirth holds, as it were, a leash on human behavior in terms of doing misdeeds, will not remain if we think of life merely as one that ends with death. Why, then, should one worry about not doing ill or trying to do good? He will continue to be selfish and go to any extent to achieve his desired goal.

People not only in India but in other countries also are trying to analyze this trend very seriously. In this field, the pioneer was Dr. Ivan Stevenson, who was a parapsychologist and has given analytical and logical accounts of the theory of rebirth. He started his research on this concept in the Department of Psychology attached to University of Virginia Medical Centre. His research on the theory and concept of rebirth was conducted in a scientific manner. In 1966 his first book on 'Twenty Cases of Suggestive Reincarnation' was published. After this he published three more books. These cases established the theory of rebirth/reincarnation.

All the books have a compilation of various incidents that happened in different countries. One of the incidents relates to an Indian who could recall incidents of his previous birth. Second one is from Sri Lanka and the third one is related to Turkey. In all the three books he give nearly 1300 incidents, the verity of which are beyond doubt.

Recently a book titled 'Living and Dying' was published. This book is related the experience of a Brahmin girl from U.P. who was born on 3rd September 1969. Her name was Swarnalata. When she was three and a half years old a few sweepers came to their house. On seeing them Swarnalata wanted to eat pork. It was unimaginable to think of a Brahmin family to think of meat and egg. How did Swarnalata come to know of it? When the father chided and scolded the girl she said she had belonged to the sweeper's caste in the previous birth and that her name had been Shanti. She also said that her husband's name was Rajendra and she gave the details of her home, village and even the door number, which was just 2 km from their home at present. She was asked about her death. She said that she used to collect coal from the nearby railway track. The day she died was Ram Navami. There had been a quarrel with her husband and he had hit her with a broom. She felt very unhappy. On the same day when she went to collect coal from the railway track she came under the wheels of the train and died. Swarnalata expressed her desire to see her family and meet her daughter Geeta who was unmarried. Experts on parapsychology analyzed the anecdote and after thorough investigation found out that whatever Swarnalata had said could not be doubted at all. It also reflected that traits of culture of her previous birth had its impact in the present also. Her habits could be correlated to the habits of her previous birth. She tried to be aloof and refused to go to school saying that she belonged to a lower caste. She had an inborn fear of railway trains. In 1975 when some of the parapsychologists questioned her they found that she knew every detail of her previous birth but she was not as open about it as earlier.

Born in June 1965, a girl by the name of Pushpa when she was hardly one and a half years old used to point to a home repeatedly and later on when she could speak, she said that, that was her home in her previous birth. She said that she was the daughter-in-law of a Sikh family and gave the names of her children. She said that her name had been Manjeet Kaur. When asked how she had died, she told the woeful story of how her mother-in-law used to ill treat her and would tell her husband all kinds of things against her, and that one day in a fit of anger her husband stabbed her to death with a knife. People who were interested in analyzing the concept and theory of previous birth and its impact on rebirth investigated and concluded logically that Manjeet had died just four years before Pushpa was born.

In the last decade these two cases have been discussed, investigated and analyzed. Even today a number of such cases have been pouring in. Dr. Stevenson has related nearly 1300 cases of rebirth in his three books. He has discussed, analyzed and thrown light on the fact that even in such countries where there is no belief in rebirth such incidents have taken place. When Ruth Simmons from Colorado Peublo in the U.S. recalled the incidents of her previous birth, the Christians were confused as they did not believe in previous birth. They were in a predicament. Hypnotist Morey Bernstein put housewife Virginia Tighe of Pueblo, Colorado, in a trance that sparked off startling revelations about Tighe's alleged past life as a 19th-century Irishwoman and her rebirth in the United States 59 years later. Bernstein used a technique called hypnotic regression, during which the subject is gradually taken back to childhood. He then attempted to take Virginia one step further, before birth, and was astonished to find he was listening to Bridey Murphy. After Bernstein's book became a best seller, all the details were checked and turned out to be true.

William Walker Atkinson in his book 'Reincarnation' throws light on many such incidents from the families who do not believe in previous birth and rebirth. The theory of reincarnation has been proved by the incidents related by these children. Normally, children remember very vividly whereas as they grow old the old experiences fade out from their memory. It is believed that man evolves after he undergoes different stages of birth from a small insect to animal to human, which takes nearly 84 lakh births. The theory of rebirth testifies that human beings are oft reborn as humans. There is a rationale behind this. The soul of the being has expanded so much that it is not able to fit back into the smaller organism's bodies. As an adult cannot wear clothes that he wore in childhood, similarly the expanded soul is not able to fit into the being of small insects, etc. Whatever be the reason, rebirth is certain. It is good to believe in the immortality of the soul and that after death, it will re enter another body and get back on earth, for this will lend a far sighted perspective and inspire human beings to lead a life that is decent and morally bound.

Atheists, Christians, Muslims do not believe in reincarnation. They do believe in the existence of soul but they say after the great floods, new creation will rise. Since that means the wait for the next birth is long, the idea of rebirth does not seem so real or attractive.

Rebirth enthuses a person to remain active and progress. As far as rebirth is concerned it has been proved beyond doubt. The idea of rebirth keeps a person positive in life and the fear of old age or death does not make him depressed or dejected. He continues to work for a noble cause. The idea that one should not commit sin to make his after life miserable makes him conscious of a noble life to lead.

Earlier the concept of rebirth was within the ambit of religion and philosophy. Both these fields are based on faith. It does not offer much assurance to the scientific minded who require proof. However, this topic, which was considered to be solely under the purview of religion, has now been taken up by scientists for research. Much evidence is bringing clarity to the subject. Directly or indirectly the critics are coming to terms with the idea of rebirth. The concept of rebirth strengthens the idea of the positive outlook and reinforces morality.


Title: The Secret of Past Lives
Authors: Muni Kishan Lal
Publisher: B. Jain Publishers Pvt. Ltd.
Edition: 2017

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Some texts contain  footnotes  and  glossary  entries. To distinguish between them, the links have different colors.
  1. Anger
  2. Body
  3. Brahmin
  4. Brain
  5. Consciousness
  6. Fear
  7. Geeta
  8. Lakh
  9. Ram
  10. Soul
  11. The Pioneer
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