Is Reincarnation Real?

Discussion in 'SCIENTIFIC and ANECDOTAL research' started by fiziwig, Feb 23, 2003.

  1. fiziwig

    fiziwig moderator emeritus

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    There are times when I wonder if it matters whether we convince anyone else or not. Maybe the things a person is here to work on this time around are better served by not believing in reincarnation for the time being. Maybe, for their present purpose, it's better that they focus on here and now and not give any thought to past or future lives.


    I have often thought how annoying it would be to be sitting in the movie theater, trying to remain totally engrossed in the latest Harry Potter adventure while someone in the seat next to you kept nudging you and reminding you "It's only a movie. It's only a movie."


    Sure, it's only a movie. I know that, deep down inside. But for now I want to forget that it's only a movie and get completely wrapped up in it. So leave me the heck alone!


    Who are we to say who would be better off believing what we are trying to convince them of. Are we the annoying people in the next seat over who keep spoiling the show with our constant reminders that it's only a movie. Maybe we just need to leave people alone to believe what's best for them to believe right now.


    Just saying ....
     
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  2. Majic

    Majic Senior Registered

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    Excellent point, fiziwig. My concept of reincarnation extends well beyond the movie concept. Reincarnation to me means total responsibility. (There is no god, out there directing us. We pre-plan our incoming carnation, establishing our environment and the people we need to contact to work out certain problems. We pre-plan our relationships and the method of departure. By tuning into our subconscious, our intuition, we can follow our plan and accomplish what we set out to do.) Knowing we are completely responsible in life will eliminate accidents and blame and revenge, etc., thus creating a life of love and respect.


    If this consciousness existed in the whole world then we would surely live in a peaceful world, one of growth and love. Therefore I think we will have to eventually become aware of our true nature - reincarnation being a part of it - to evolve as a whole.


    Being aware of reincarnation shouldn't have a negative effect on life, it will only enhance it.
     
  3. Truthseeker

    Truthseeker Former Moderator

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    This is a good point. The reality is there are probably not very many people who want to take complete responsiblity for their life. There are people who cannot accept that they would deliberately choose any difficulties in their life. However, the point they miss is that there is a point to their life. Good or bad, it all means something. We are not suffering for nothing. And if we grow and improve, we will not have to choose that road again in the next life.
     
  4. Majic

    Majic Senior Registered

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    You're right, Turthseeker, there IS a point to everyone's life and reincarnation supports that idea. Right now we are listening to religions, for example Christianity, who tell us Jesus will take responsibility for our lives, if we believe in him. Society has reinforced that lack of personal responsibility by providing insurance, schools for our education, health care, etc. It is easier to allow others to be responsible. At the same time the 'others' gain power and influence by taking on that responsibility.


    We need to create an awareness in our society that reincarnation is a fact and our purpose in life is to grow with all of the obstacles we have pre-planned for our growth. Once we realize life is not a crap game, then we should be able to take on the responsibility to grow.
     
  5. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    I actually agree with Majic, Truthseeker, and Fiziwig, even though some points might appear to contradict. I know that, "When the student is ready, the teacher appears.", but, I still wish that there could be some way to reach and convince everyone regarding the importance of reincarnation and karma. But I know, as you do, that evangelical efforts are the best way to twist and misinterpret any concept -- religious or otherwise.


    One may wish that everyone could agree on one thing, so that there would someday be no war or violence. But, here too, that's not the way it works. War is absolutely necessary, and violence is unavoidable. We cannot know peace without war, gentleness without violence, and happiness without misfortune.


    It's interesting to note that Carol's son, Chase, said the same thing in his own insightful way, during an early regression session, as a very young boy;



    "Everyone has to be in a war. It balances everything out. Not necessarily die in a war, but experience it. It teaches you about feelings. It gives you a sense of how other people feel. It's a bad place."



    I personally cringe whenever I hear some beauty contestant say, "I want there to be world peace", and I roll my eyes when someone says that, "Violence is baaaaaaaad!". Violence and war can be the only means of protecting whatever we feel is important. Not to do so is the quickest path to oblivion. Veterans I've known, would often re-enlist in service after returning to "the world"; not because they enjoyed war, but because they discovered how naive home really was, and things that people thought important, suddenly appeared to be superficial and meaningless. War is reality -- not peace. Challenge is necessary for spiritual growth; while peace is too often taken for granted.


    -Nightrain
     
  6. Truthseeker

    Truthseeker Former Moderator

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    That is a thought provoking post, Nightrain. No one likes the bad stuff, but it has its place. It serves its purpose. Through pain rises understanding, throught suffering rises compassion. It is an arena in which great opportunities for growth exist.


    I feel that the essence of what you are saying is there has to be a balance to the world. Without the bad, the good is taken for granted. Without the negative, the positive becomes complacent and immobile.
     
  7. Majic

    Majic Senior Registered

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    You're right nightrain1, in our society war is inevitable and necessary because we have created it to be. We are responsible for our world and we have created physical destruction as a means to settle disagreements. While I don't think it has to be that way, it is that way and we will have to live through it until we become 'enlightened' enough to live with love.


    If we ever reached the level in which people consider themselves completely responsible for their actions, then blame would not exist, and therefore vengeance and war would have no purpose. If we learned the value of forgiveness, war would not exist. But these are all big "ifs". When we reach such a state of understanding our values would be so evolved a whole new paradigm of life would present itself. It may be beyond our comprehension now, but I truly think we can eventually live without war. We can live with respect, responsibility and love.
     
  8. stardis

    stardis Senior Registered

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    Well said.


    I love the song "Love Is The Answer":

    Light of the world, shine on me


    Love is the answer



    Shine on us all



    Set us free



    Love is the answer


    Also, the chorus of "We Are the World" is about who we are - we are each other, we are all the same thing! Our purpose is to make the world and the human race a wonderful place for us to return to in our future incarnations. Our children are precious because they are us:

    We are the world


    We are the children



    We are the ones who make a brighter day



    So let's start giving



    There's a choice we're making



    We're saving our own lives



    It's true we'll make a better day



    Just you and me


    I don't mean to come across like everything is just lovely because I realize it is not. I have given up hope that I will see a better world and, as of now anyway, don't wish to come back here for a very long time.
     
  9. purple

    purple New Member

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    I agree with Nightrain. We all need to experience loss or lack of something, wether this is peace, or love, health, family or a job. And war is just one of the many way we could all loose what we think we simply "own".


    When we experience loss we understand we really are a little drop in a big ocean. And then, maybe, we can start living every day as if it was the last one, appreciating all the extra chances we get to be with the ones we love; to be alive and healthy; to sleep another night in our comfortable bed in our safe home, in our warfree country.


    purple
     
  10. fiziwig

    fiziwig moderator emeritus

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    Donning my devil's advocate hat for a moment (and a tip of that hat to Nightrain1)...


    Not to belabor the movie metaphor, but have you ever watched a movie where there was nothing but peace and growth and love? Such a movie does not exist because such a movie would bore everyone to tears.


    Part of the reason we are here is for the drama. Another part is for the conflicts and problems that we use as stepping stones to growth and enlightenment. Growth doesn't happen in conditions of peace, love, harmony and calm. Growth happens in response to adversity and challenge.


    Would we ever learn to help others if there were no others in desperate need of help? Would we ever learn gratitude if we ourselves were never in need of help? Would we understand another's need for help if we had not experienced that same need ourselves at some time in our life?


    We NEED problems to challenge us. We NEED drama to stretch our understanding and compassion. We NEED adversity to strengthen us. Without such difficulties we would quickly lapse into a state of semi-consciousness. We might think of it as "blissful", but in reality it would be indolent torpor. We would stagnate and cease to grow and develop. And worse, we would not have any memorable experiences to make the journey exciting.


    Thai Buddhist master Ajahn Cha once said "If it wasn't meant to be this way, it wouldn't be this way." The world is exactly the way the world needs to be for us to use it as a difficult and often uncomfortable training ground. We are not here to relax and float in blissful indolence. We are here to get some important work done. There's no point in complaining that boot camp is too hard, and wishing that the barracks had feather beds and hot tubs and water coolers filled with pink champagne. That's not what boot camp is about.


    Yes, the world is a mess! Thank God for that! This is exactly the kind of mess we chose to participate in. This is the world we picked, and we picked it for a good reason. So as the sergeant so often said, "Shut up and peel those potatoes!"
     
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  11. Majic

    Majic Senior Registered

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    I love the way you express yourself, fiziwig (Shut up and peel those potatoes.), and I concur that the world is a perfect place for us humans to learn. As I said to nightrain1, "In our society war is inevitable and necessary because we have created it to be that way." We have chosen this world to experience adversity, challenges, conflicts, etc. as mirrors to our present understanding, providing the opportunity to move beyond violence. When all violence is removed from this world then we would not choose to come back to Earth anymore because there would be nothing left to learn.


    However, we may also eventually (in a million earth-years or so) transform Earth to a new paradigm of learning because we will have exhausted the violence's we once needed. Like the concept of infinity, I can't comprehend what that world look like then, in my present state of evolution, but I can conceive of a different mode of learning. Perhaps it will be of one where we are all capable of telepathy, soul travel, etc. and the challenges will be one to improve these new attributes. It may be a peaceful world as we envision it now, but when we are involved in it there would be different kinds of (spiritual) conflicts.
     
  12. Truthseeker

    Truthseeker Former Moderator

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    As a life-long competitor in athletics, I've had times when victory came easily. I've also had times when victory was hard-fought, and times when it felt nearly impossible to achieve. Though to win easily is fun (for a while), it eventually breeds complacency and boredom. Over the years I've learned that the time when I/we had to overcome adversity are the times that I cherish the most. Those are the times when you learn the most, grow the most, and understand the most. Those are the times when you are forced to dig down deep inside yourself and find out what you are made of.


    What comes easily is taken for granted, and often leaves wanting for more of a challenge. What is achieved through hard work and sacrifice is greatly valued and can leave you feeling much more fulfilled. Those games that forced me to dig deep and find out what I was made of were the games that were the most fun for me. Sure, they made me want to pull my hair out and bang my head against the wall at times, but they made for some great memories. They left me on an adrenaline high saying to myself, this is why I love to play. Isn't life more fun when there is a goal to be fought for and reached, then to have all the pieces fall into place on their own?


    All this reminds me of the part of the comedian Lewis Black's book Me Of Little Faith in which he talks about reincarnation. He said the whole idea of it is very appealing to him. In spite of the problems, he likes it here on Earth, and he wants to come back. He's afraid that if he were to go to Heaven where everything is perfect, he'd just be bored and depressed. It's much more exciting on Earth because of all the crap there is to deal with.
     
  13. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    While struggling through life, I'm sure that we have all noticed how everything that is living can only survive through some kind of violence. Beast eats beast, and plants grow from what is excreted, and so on down the line. We do the same, whether we are Vegan or Carnivorous, because all that we eat is a byproduct of life's tribulations.


    Although we may be spirit beings in a physical body, we still need sustenance by the exploitation of other living things. So, as physical beings, we are really no different than the animals. Some may say that we also kill for ideology and, sometimes for no reason at all. But it all springs from our desire and skill to survive and control our environment.


    Even on the scale of macro economics, nations will exploit nations, and the U.S. is no exception. The strongest nations always take what they need, either by one means or another. No matter how we cloak our motives, we behave like animals on all levels. The only real difference is that nations tend to do it more efficiently.


    There is, however, one distinct contradiction in that we also devote our lives for the sake of others regardless of species. And we tend to assign such behavior to our spiritual natures. But, this begs a question regarding the next level of existence, which is purely of a spiritual nature. How is it that the afterlife doesn't incorporate the concept of exploitation for survival? What is life, if there is not challenge? Why shouldn't we behave the same in the next life? If the very concept of life is based upon exploitation, how can there be "life" in the next level of the spiritual realm without exploitation? After all, it is said that in the next level, we are patterned along the lines of this world; and "As above -- so below".


    So, what can the next life be without it? If it is so important to graduate to higher levels of existence, what's the motivation? So many of our questions can be answered by knowing that there is a higher level, and we are confident that there is a higher level, because we have witnesses. Many of us can safely accept that there is a higher level, without having absolute proof. But has anyone ever come back to speak on the motivation to progress, if there is no challenge in the next life?


    -Nightrain
     
  14. stardis

    stardis Senior Registered

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    My last word on the subject. Here is a quote from a NY Times op-ed today : Distant Wars, Constant Ghosts.

    Where is the value here? Who or what is your God?
     
  15. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    Thanks Stardis! About the best article I've read on the subject.


    Violence doesn't end without constant reverberations, as pointed out in the article. But, the same can be true of the decision to respect life as much as possible. That too has it's reverberations; which isk why so many Veterans Organizations are being filled by battle weary Veterans, who are trying to redeem themselves. That has reverberations too.


    Some say that good and evil came from only one God. And, some say that we are God, collectively perfecting the quality of our spirits. Perhaps, the only way to do that is to visit and experience both sides of the same coin. Or, maybe God is powerless to prevent war and violence. Whatever the case, war and violence will never end on this planet no matter what we do to prevent it; and regardless of whatever God we choose to believe in.


    -Nightrain
     
  16. fiziwig

    fiziwig moderator emeritus

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    To play devil's advocate again, I think the whole idea of "spiritual growth" and advancing to "higher levels" might just be completely wrong. One of my more favorite theories goes like this:


    We are perfect beings and we already know everything it is possible to know. The problem is, that perfect existence is boring beyond belief, so we created a huge game called "physical reality" were we enter into this make-believe reality just to have fun. Not every soul chooses to play this particular game, but we did, because here we are.


    We do not need to advance, we are already perfect. We do not need to learn anything. We already know it all. We just voluntarily mask that knowledge while we are here playing the game. The only purpose in life is to enjoy the game.


    And, there are many sub-games within the game. You might choose to pay the power game, or the wealth game, or like many of us on this forum, the spiritual development game. But it's all just a game. We do it for the shear enjoyment of it, and nothing more.
     
  17. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    Fiziwig, you won't get any argument from me. Your theory is great, and the cartoon even better. It makes one think, doesn't it?


    But, where is the zap button?


    -Nightrain
     
  18. Charles Stuart

    Charles Stuart Probationary

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    Good day to you, gentlemen (and ladies)... :)


    I view it a bit differently. To me, the process is and has always been an evolutionary one. The Soul-Consciousness is created pure but ignorant, and humankind progresses collectively via the reincarnatory process. "Peace" is an objective to be achieved. One which will arise when we are finally consciously aware enough to finally realize the insanity of our actions. I very much doubt that "God" would desire such a state of affairs, but rather that we were given our free-will with which to learn and perceive "right" from "wrong". Something we are ALL instinctively capable of differentiating.


    I have finally finished writing the story I have been working on for so long. In it I tell of the Jacobite Uprising of 1745/46 and all its implications. My main intention has been to attempt to demonstrate the insanity of war, the suffering derived from it and the even greater madness of anyone heading into war for "religious" reasons.


    If we base ourselves on a concept by which we reincarnate simply because we are bored with the perfection of the spiritual realms, this comes across to me as something entirely pointless, whereas the concept of spiritual growth and perfecting brings with it a coherent process of spiritual evolution and enlightenment...


    “What do the spiritual pleasures of the enlightened souls consist of?”


    “Justice desires it that the reward should be proportionate to its merit, just as punishment should be in accordance to the gravity of the fault; therefore there are infinite degrees to the pleasures of the soul, from the instant in which it enters the path of goodness to the moment in which it reaches perfection. The happiness of the good Spirits consists of knowing all things, of not feeling hatred, nor jealousy, nor envy, nor ambition, nor any of the passions that disgrace mankind.



    The love that unites them is, to the good Spirits, the source of supreme happiness, for it does not feel the needs, nor the pains, nor the anguishes of material life.” (Allan Kardec in “The Spirits' Book ”, Paris, France, 1856).



    Nice to be talking to you guys again. :thumbsup:


    Charles
     
  19. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    Hello Charles,


    And I must say it is an honor to be reading your threads again. The Jacobite Uprisings have always held my attention, as I've always imagined that I would probably have been on the losing side of those insane and bloody fiascos.


    I can agree that much of our happiness would be derived from learning the many mysteries and secrets of this world from Antediluvian Civilizations and Stonehenge to Quantum Mechanics and "Who killed John F. Kennedy?". I can also heartily agree that it would be much better having no more pain, heartbreak and war. But, how could we continue to evolve our souls, if there is no world left in which to learn?


    The evolution of the soul is, indeed moving toward peace, and most importantly universal love. However, I truly cannot see any of us reaching these goals within this world; which by its very definition means the physical realm as separated from the spiritual. This lifetime can't possibly evolve into the spiritual realm without transcending the world pretty much as it is. Some folks seem to believe that we have evolved into more of a rational and compassionate civilization; and that it will continue to evolve until it covers the entire earth and achieves the presumed ultimate goal of total love.


    However, I have only seen some of these changes in isolated corners of the world. The rest of the world is still as brutal and unforgiving as it has ever been. And, these evolving societies will collapse again into brutality as have all the civilizations before us. It is only a matter of time. Our souls, however, will only taste the fruits of soul progression in the higher planes.


    I surmise that earth, on the other hand, will always remain as it is with peace and war intermingled, and with civilizations coming and going forever. Even if this earth is destroyed, souls may continue to visit similar worlds within this dimension for the purpose of evolving. Perhaps it can be likened to sort of Holodeck in which souls will always be able to visit and practice their skills.


    I don't feel that we can ever achieve complete perfection, in this or any other dimension; because perfection implies that there is some kind of end point, where there is nothing left to learn; and I believe that there will always be something to learn. The soul will always keep evolving forever with no limit. There will always, perhaps, be worlds like this, to serve our individual souls, whenever we feel the need to come back and learn something; because there will always be something new to experience in this "world". Perfection, on the other hand, may be only a word that can be used in the lower dimensions, because it would, otherwise, not be achievable in the higher dimensions.


    Of course, this is all conjecture, and it can be enriching to "argue" each others points of philosophy as do the Tibetan Buddhists. So I hope that everyone views this only as "spirited" debate. Nothing is ever set in stone.


    -Nightrain
     
  20. Charles Stuart

    Charles Stuart Probationary

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    Hi Nightrain,


    It's a pleasure to be having the opportunity to be debating such issues with you as well... :thumbsup:


    I agree with what you say. And seeing as the process here on this little planet of ours is of such short duration that the moment we begin to make heads or tails of it all we are usually already in the process of ending it, it does not seem like it could ever change. But still it has...


    Upon all the research I did into Charles Edward Stuart's life and the Jacobite rebellion, one thing that came across very clearly is that we, humankind, despite all the s*** that we still see in so many regions of the world, have nevertheless made great progress in relation to how the world was structured back then. Take the Roman times, or the days of the Mayas, and the evolution becomes even clearer to perceive.


    I honestly cannot say whether we will ever have the chance, in this little planet of ours, of reaching "perfection". Indeed it does not seem feasible to us. But what I have hoped to try to demonstrate by my posts is the importance of doing our best to improve ourselves and do what we can to make it a better place. Quite certainly, we are not already "perfect beings" who are just here for the ride. "Enlightenment" is a spiritual objective to be pursued and achieved, not a state in which we already find ourselves...


    Charles
     
  21. Charles Stuart

    Charles Stuart Probationary

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    Oh, one more thing... I have also been hearing so much concerning the histeria related to 21/12/2012. Well, should we indeed be hit by an asteroid or suffer any other such cataclismic events, I am quite certain that there will be no shortage of other worlds in this apparently infinite universe of ours in which humankind might continue to evolve...


    "Our Father's home has many mansions."


    :) :thumbsup:
     
  22. Truthseeker

    Truthseeker Former Moderator

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    I am reminded of the great quote by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, "We are not physical beings having a spiritual experience, we are spirtual beings having a physical experience." Many see perfection as the ultimate goal. Some (even some I know) see that the way to achieve this is to ultimately completely detach themselves from the physical world. From my point of view, to do so is to completely deny yourself of the physical experience, and defeat the purpose of coming to this world in the first place.


    I feel as though we are all intended to experience everything this crazy world has to offer, both good and bad. No one likes the bad, and no one really wants bad things to happen. But without the bad, how can the good be fully appreciated? When tragedy strikes, it can be devastating for those involved. But it also sets the stage for extraordinary acts of compassion, courage, love, good will, and kindness. Sometimes we need a strong kick in the a** to awake from our slumber and become more than what we currently are.


    A perfect world is a wonderful thought. But if it were indeed perfect, as the spiritual realm is perfect, there would be no point in coming here to begin with.
     
  23. Charles Stuart

    Charles Stuart Probationary

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    Aye, Truthseeker, in Spiritism it is said that this is a world of trials, tests and expiations, and one of the best "learning grounds" there are. I do believe, however, that it is our duty to do the best we can to make it a better, more loving and more compassionate place. If we cannot do so at a world scale, let's at least give it the best we can within our own "micro-cosmos"... :) :thumbsup:
     
  24. Truthseeker

    Truthseeker Former Moderator

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    I agree. I'm certainly not saying "don't bother because it doesn't matter." It does matter, or we wouldn't put ourselves through all this. I think that's what all those trials and tribulations are there for. To awaken us and push us to overcome. They remind us that we are always capable of loving more, doing more, and giving more. Unfortunately, the message isn't always received.
    To respond to myself: :D

    The light is always brighter when it is preceded by the darkness.
     
  25. Charles Stuart

    Charles Stuart Probationary

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    Truthseeker, I really do believe that no good deed goes unnoticed (neither do the bad ones, actually). As you said, it is not by isolating oneself into a convent or sitting meditating throughout one's lifetime at the top of a mountain that will bring about "enlightenment"; but love, charity, compassion, respect, consideration for others... All the simple things we know of deep down in our hearts, but which the rollercoaster of life so easily makes us forget.
     
  26. Tinkerman

    Tinkerman Administrator Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Hello Charles, my friend. This is an excellent thread for thought. I find myself agreeing with each of you. I too believe we are here to learn. There are so many mysteries, so many shaded truths. They, in themselves, are markers and lessons for those that have "ears to hear." I believe that the inherent gift most humans have to explore the hidden, the mystical and the spiritual is a part of reincarnation journey. I did not awaken one day with a belief in reincarnation...but I've always been keenly aware of something just on the other side of reality. As I began to open my heart and soul to what was going on around me the truth revealed itself to me. I do believe, I do know, that it is real. But that perfect-sense is not a plate of cookies I can hand to another hungry soul. You each have given marvelous thoughts that indeed illuminate the truth. I believe that's all we can do in these debates.


    Thanks for the enriching thoughts Nightrain, Charles and Truthseeker!!


    Tman
     
  27. fiziwig

    fiziwig moderator emeritus

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    Reincarnating to relieve boredom is not pointless. In fact it is entirely pointy. The point is to relieve boredom! That sounds like a very worthwhile purpose.


    The concept of spiritual growth may indeed sound lofty and wonderful, but that doesn't mean it's true. We like to think of nature as friendly and nurturing, but go get lost in the forest and see how friendly nature is to you! Mother nature will crush and kill you the first chance she gets!


    Our fantasies about how we wish things were are seldom, if ever, any guide to the way things really are.


    "The truth will set you free. But first, it will **** you off." -- Gloria Steinem.


    That said, among the many games we can play while we are here for the fun of it is the Great and Wondrous Spiritual Growth Game, and the only way to play that game, or any game, effectively is to immerse yourself in the game and believe it with all your heart and soul. Anything less is no fun at all.


    So have fun!


    ;) ;) ;)
     
  28. Charles Stuart

    Charles Stuart Probationary

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    Hi Fiziwig,


    When you speak of fantasy, I reckon we could go about either way. Here in Brazil there are several spiritualist centers that for over a century now have worked with mediumnity and spiritual messages. I myself took part in one for 12 years, time enough to have been able to observe the reality of the phenomenon, with more than enough "proof". Pretty much most of what I have shared here over all these years has been based on this experience of my own and that of others who have had similar ones, and who have worked upon divulging them, such as the Brazilian medium Chico Xavier.


    This is a phenomenon that has been witnessed by literally hundreds of thousands, either by receiving psychographed messages from loved ones who have died, with intimate details of facts such as nicknames or episodes that only the deceased and the closest relatives could know about or, such as in my case, by hearing from another of things that only oneself could know. Just as an example, I was told during one such session that my wife was pregnant of my daughter when she was only 2 weeks into her pregnancy, and neither she nor I even imagined that she could be. I could give you examples by the hundreds, but I think that would break the purpose here...


    Much of the work that is done nowadays had its beginning in Allan Kardec's work on mediumnity and spiritual messages in the 1850s. According to such communications, the spirit is never idle. There is no such thing as boredom in the spiritual realms because even those spirits who have reached a degree in which they no longer have the need of undergoing the reincarnatory process are occupied by actively working towards assisting other souls in their development. You might know of them under various names, including the term "guardian angels".


    The challenges of nature, as you put it, were in my view created to motivate us to think and reflect and attempt to overcome them, and in this process we have had the opportunity to develop not only our sense of cooperation, of family bonds and brotherhood, but also our intelligence...
     
  29. Nightrain

    Nightrain Senior Registered

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    These discussions are getting to the very heart of my questions, and I'm enjoying everyone's ideas. Of course, I realize that there are aspects of these questions, which simply cannot be proven in a manner that would please many of us. As so many devout Christians have reminded me, "Sometimes, we have to accept certain ideas on faith." and "God works in mysterious ways.".


    The concept of knowing everything whenever we return "home" to our spiritual origins, and being happy with that still seems to beg the question for me. This is not to say that I don't agree with any of the above observations, because I do. But, the idea of continuing to learn and teach in the afterlife sort of contradicts the theory that we already know everything there is to know while we're there. If we know everything, what would be the point of learning? And, if most of us on this physical plane are made to forget our past physical and spiritual memories; what is the point of having guides?


    I do feel fairly certain that there are guides, and that we always need to learn things on both sides of the spiritual barrier. However, the logic of both questions, above, still leaves one to wonder why these contradictions exist. In addition, I'm still uncomfortable with what seems to be a boring and unchallenged existence on the other side.


    It may be quite true, that one need only get there to appreciate the joy of a painless and productive existence. But, the logic still seems a bit strained. The question of individuality also sneaks into the discussion, when one considers that the bulk of our learning experience on Earth is spent getting used to our identities; only to have those identities lost or transformed in the afterlife. On the other hand, if we do retain and build our personalities throughout our existence, doesn't that make us more unique and set apart from each other?


    -Nightrain
     
  30. Truthseeker

    Truthseeker Former Moderator

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    I love the analogy of comparing this whole thing to a college campus, and each lifetime is like taking a class. You get to choose your major. You get to choose what classes you take and when. I get to choose how many credits you take in a semester, and you choose how much effort you put in. You decide when to work and when to play. Yes, you have advisors there to hold your hand, and help you when need be. But they don't make your decisions for you. They are simply there to help you make the most informed decisions possible. Basically, everybody's on their own path, proceeding at their own pace, and have their own reasons for why they've made the choices that they've made.


    Is there such thing as graduating? In a way, I hope not. Once we've reached the end, then what? Personally, living happily ever after sounds boring to me. I love vacations, but I don't want them to last forever. Staying at a five-star resort sounds great...for a while. Eventually I'm gonna be ready to get back home, and get down to business.

    When I think of the idea that we seem to have this higher level of understanding when we are in spirit form, I makes me think of two things. One, if we are living this life with an amnesic block, and that vail is lifted once we return to the spiritual realm, I'm sure we would have a much greater understanding once we remember everything, and can compare notes, so to speak. I think it makes sense to have amnesia while we're in this life. If we didn't, it'd kinda be like taking a test with all the answers to the questions in front of you. What would be the point?
    Second, perhaps the understanding we have in spirit, and what we do in flesh is like learning a skill of trade. Let's say you're learning to play golf. You may have a good understanding for the game and what you are supposed to do from reading a book and watching it on TV. But that is only going to get you so far. Eventually you have to get out on the course, and start swinging the clubs yourself. No matter how much you understand about it, there's no substitute for getting out and doing it. Also, speaking from experience, once you get out in live action, it's amazing how much you can forget and fail to do in the heat of the moment. You look back on it later, and think of the mistakes you made. You wonder how could have been so blind and careless, and swear you're not going to make that same mistake again the next time.


    Well, that's been my experience anyway. I can't speak for anyone else. : angel

    My feelings on this that we are an accumulation of all our past life experiences, but at the same time, there is an underlying essence to who you are. You are you. In the past lives that I have remembered, I always felt like me. There may have been different dynamics to my personality that were amplified from one life to the next, but were all me in some way.
    Perhaps, like fiziwig stated, that's the whole point of reincarnating. It relieves us of boredom, and provides us with a challenge.
     

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