believe or are told to believe about reincarnation - or about anything, for that
matter - has no impact on whether or not it is true. The act of
believing does not make something true or the world would still
be flat. If something is true, it is true with or
without our approval and concurrence. If it is not true, believing won't
make it so.
we cannot prove much about religion, reincarnation or the afterlife
until society is willing to probe into and objectively examine its beliefs.
The starting point would be to test religion against the
sciences, which CAN be proven. However, resistance by society prevents
We're left with the following
choices: consider all the angles and decide for
ourselves, or believe what we're told to believe and never question
can only piece together a belief structure based on what we know.
Different people know (or think they know) different things.
Consequently, everyone has different beliefs about things we cannot
(or will not) prove.
However, since we cannot
(or will not) prove, we also cannot condemn
people who reach a different conclusion, or declare that God condemns
them for us. That would be bad
as well as wrong.
pieced together my own belief structure based upon what I know, or
think I know. I've put it together for you in the following analysis,
which is NOT intended to declare any sort of "truth."
Rather, I hope this essay simply
encourages you to think about things, question things, and look at them
in new ways.
reincarnation is not true, is it because God CAN’T?
can’t God do reincarnation?
God can't do reincarnation, what
ELSE can’t he do?
The laws of Physics state that energy cannot be destroyed.
Thought is energy. Therefore, thought cannot be destroyed.
Conclusion: The individual
energy pockets of thought, feeling and experience that
comprise our individuality (our “souls”, to use a common term)
cannot be destroyed. Therefore our souls are eternal. If our souls are
eternal, they must still exist after death.
Note: The characteristics of
energy invalidate any argument that states there is no life after death.
In order to take up that argument, one would have to prove our current
understanding of Physics is incorrect.
has definable, measurable, predictable patterns of behavior. The
entrance of a soul into a physical body is a process that must be subject to as
yet undiscovered laws of Physics because the process occurs in the
physical world. Inhabiting a body is an accepted and widely recognized
behavior for this pocket of energy.
Physics allows the human body to contain a soul. Since
this process occurs at least once per individual (and billions of times
over all, taking the world's population into account) this soul behavior
likely a pattern that can occur an infinite number of times
for the same reason any valid Physics experiment can be reproduced an
infinite number of times.
To prove that
reincarnation is not true:
We must identify the specific laws of Physics
that define the conditions under which the soul enters the body. Then we
must identify the laws that prevent indestructible energy from engaging in this
behavior more than once, and explain why this behavior is an isolated
behavior - "used up" after one occurrence
- instead of infinitely repeating in a recurring pattern when those
conditions are present, which is more typical of energy behaviors.
Until we do that, we must assume
can repeat this known behavior, just as energy can repeat other known
behaviors, and can inhabit successive human bodies
over time. At the very least, we must remain open-minded to the
nothing prevents energy from engaging in this behavior repeatedly - and
your soul from returning - until we can use God's Works
(the sciences) to prove
Note: Searching for evidence that consciousness is or is not
separate from the physical body (in other words, proof that the soul
even exists) is another avenue to explore in support of either side of
versus "No God"
existence - or non-existence - of God is not
something anyone can prove. Nevertheless, logic and probability can suggest one thing
are usually a mess. While some accidents create beauty (a
symmetrical pattern in shattered glass, for instance), or a
situation that can be viewed as lucky, most create a
situation that can only be improved with the intervention of a
higher intelligence, such as a tow truck driver or a paramedic.
more closely you study any of the sciences (Physics, Mathematics,
Ecology, and so forth) the more perfect they are. Perfection in the
midst of their extensive complexity precludes random chance, is
inconsistent with "accident", and is more consistent with
is orderly, and has rules. If
Mathematics was created at random and without the intervention of
a higher intelligence, it would contain mistakes. The odds against something as
complex and perfect as Mathematics creating itself spontaneously at
random are similar to the odds against randomly shuffling a deck of
cards into the order they were when you first bought them: hearts
first, ace through king, diamonds second, ace through king, and so
forth. The laws of Probability would prevent that from ever
occurring. Therefore, Mathematics must not have been created at
odds against multiple sciences (add together Mathematics, Physics and the rest) creating
themselves perfectly, spontaneously, at random, are incalculable.
Calculate the odds against shuffling those cards in perfect
order, then multiply those by the number of sciences. The answer you
arrive at represents only a minute fraction of the real odds. There
are countless laws and rules associated with
the sciences, and these fell perfectly into place when the sciences
came into existence - through whatever means. On the other hand, there are only
52 playing cards.
odds greatly favor the existence of a higher intelligence - some
sort of “God”.
prefer to go with the odds, and will presume from this point forward
that there is a God.
is an expression of the creator. Since a
higher power, or "God", must have created the sciences, the
characteristics that define this God must be very much like his
creations. So, God would be consistent with Physics, Mathematics and
Ecology, as well as all the other sciences.
In order to
define or know God, we must therefore examine God’s works.
works can be explored, scrutinized, tested and retested. They are all
subject to definable laws, which all produce predictable results. If a
religion is a work of God, it too can be explored, scrutinized, tested
and retested - and be ultimately proven true". Furthermore,
what is true of God's other works - the Sciences - will hold equally
true for God's work, "the true religion", since all of these
would be expressions of the same Creator.
retesting and scrutinizing cannot be done within the context of a
religion. This is to say that one cannot use the Bible to prove the
validity of Christianity, or the Torah to prove the validity of
Judaism for the same reason you cannot use a word to define itself
("Red is a color that is red in color"). Doing that results
in circular logic, not proof or conclusions. We can only find
proof through independent, objective and separate tests performed
using scientific methods.
a religion is the true one, it will pass the tests.
is neither my intention, nor within my power to declare any
religion the true one beyond noting the basic building block they
all share of "Do unto others..." However, I do feel reincarnation is worthy
of examination within the context of all religions.
following observations are solely intended to be thought-provoking, and
to encourage your own personal exploration of the sciences and what they suggest about
God, religion and reincarnation. While the examples all offer likelihoods, none of them is intended to conclusively
of the rules of Physics states that “every action creates an equal
and opposite reaction.”
Therefore, God must be minutely fair.
laws of karma state that you pay for bad things you do in EXACT
MEASURE, and receive back what you give in EXACT MEASURE. This is
consistent with Physics ("every action creates an equal and
opposite reaction"). It therefore is consistent with the God
who created Physics.
On the other hand, a belief structure that
assigns eternal hell or heaven on the basis of inconsistent or
incomplete behaviors (no lifetime is eternal to begin
with, nor is it wholly good or bad) is inconsistent with God's works, and therefore
would be inconsistent with God.
of the characteristics of Mathematics is that the answer to an
equation never changes. You always get “8" when you add 4+4. It
is not conditional. It doesn’t change because you BELIEVE
the answer is 7, or because your interpretation of a passage within
a book implies that it MUST be 7.
God, therefore, must be as consistent as Mathematics, and (if you understand his laws)
According to the laws of karma, the columns
of “input” and “output” always equal each other whether you
add them top to bottom or bottom to top. You never get more than you
give, in other words. This is consistent with Mathematics.
Therefore it is consistent with the God who created Mathematics.
On the other hand, the answer to a mathematical equation is
never determined solely by belief. If you state that 4+4
equals 7 you are wrong regardless of your sincerity, how certain
you are that your answer to the equation is correct, and how many
other people believe the same thing - or how sacred
they've made that belief! Therefore, if
your understanding is that that you have earned a reward or evaded a punishment because of
your beliefs, and for reasons separate from
your actions, your understanding is inconsistent with God's works.
Therefore it would be inconsistent with God.
or God's work called Ecology, plays no favorites. It
does not prefer the lion to the gazelle, or vice versa. Every
creature is equipped with survival skills and a survival instinct,
then is left to either survive or perish. This
impartiality in nature suggests that there is no special group of
people that God likes
better than any of the others. He does not like men more than he
likes women. He does not like people who believe this doctrine more
than he likes people who believe that one. He does not like people
who are popular more than he likes the outcasts. He does not like
religious people more than he likes atheists. He gives them all
survival skills and a survival instinct, then subjects them to all
the laws of the physical world, including the objective rules of
Physics: "For every action, there is an equal and opposite
nature, there is a constant cycle of death and rebirth. Matter and
energy cannot be destroyed (a law of Physics); they can only change forms. This is
consistent with reincarnation.
order for God to be consistent with his laws, his judgment and
assessments of us as individuals would have to be purely
mathematical, completely impartial, and rooted solely in his law of
Physics: "Every action creates an equal and opposite
All the world’s great religions (Christianity, Judaism,
Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam and so forth) diverge only in the details
of how to worship. These details were contributed by
man, and are largely based upon interpretation of works, such as the
Bible and the Torah, which were written by man (each Biblical
Chapter notes the name of its author, for instance, and each of
these authors was a mortal being.).
All of the major religions basically built themselves
upon the same “golden rule”: “Do unto others as would you
would have them do unto you.” This is consistent with the laws of
Physics (action/reaction). It therefore is consistent with God, who
Since the laws of karma ("get what you give") are consistent with the
laws of Physics and with the "Golden Rule", they too are consistent with God.
Conclusion: All the great
religions are essentially valid, and are built around a core that is
consistent with God and with Physics. The issue is not to prove
whether one religion is superior to all the others, but to
objectively test, identify and remove the manmade details that surround this core, and challenge the
implied or invented sacredness of these details.
when man forces too much of his opinion on religion, he obfuscates and detracts
from the original message, and moves religion away from God in order to
move religion closer to his personal agenda. This agenda quite often
includes hatred and intolerance (usually completely subjective, and
completely counter to the impartiality shown by God in nature), belief
in one's own personal superiority, or belief in the superiority of one's
without proving one's religion is, in fact, superior by examining and
testing it first.
of these things falls comfortably within the Golden Rule of
"do unto others" so none of these things has any valid place
within any religion.
one true religion may simply be a matter of "less is
more", a lowest common denominator that places all the world's
religions on equal footing, with equal validity. The one true
religion may in fact be nothing more than a simple code of conduct: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto
one of the very few religious beliefs that is fundamentally consistent with the
laws of the sciences is the very thing some religions attack:
on the compatibility of reincarnation to the sciences, that true
religion, whatever it is, would seem to include - or would seem
likely to include - reincarnation within its framework.
the consistency of Mathematics, the fairness of Physics and the
impartiality of Ecology also
address the complaint most people have, that life is unfair. Unfairness does not exist in God's works. Since God
does not treat us with discernible
fairness, or consistency, or impartiality, where and when does his consistency and fairness
surface? In another life?
For goodness sake, WHY NOT?
If you are a skeptic, you may need to ask yourself - honestly -
why you do not believe. Is it because it's implausible? It's not. If
you are comprised of energy, it is no more implausible that you
could take residence in a physical body TWICE than it is implausible
for you to take residence ONCE. Reincarnation is nothing more
than a recurring behavioral pattern of your energy.
Is it because your religion tells you it is not true? Only representatives of some religions take that position on
the questionable authority given to them by man or, most often, with
no authority at all, only opinion formed from their
training and conditioning by other people with similar opinions. The religions
themselves either promote the belief (most, in fact, do), or say
nothing conclusive against it, except in interpretation, which is always debatable.
Or is it because you have some personal reason to reject the
concept, and would do so even if you were handed proof? When people
finally reach this point in the analysis, the truth often comes
forward: "I just don't like thinking I'll have to come back and
do this again." "I don't want to think that my mother
will be reborn before I die and have a chance to see her
more prevalent is the resistance people have toward any suggestion
that they may be responsible for their own hardships and misfortune
because of actions they cannot remember from previous
lifetimes. In order to accept reincarnation, one must be prepared to
be personally accountable.
The Bible contains the following phrases: “born again”,
“rebirth” and “resurrection of the dead”.
also referred to his "second coming".
argue that Jesus did not intend for us to take those phrases
literally. We can argue that “born again” and “rebirth” are
terms describing a spiritual renewal that will ensure your entrance into heaven, regardless of Mathematics
and Physics, how your actions stack up, and what equal and
opposite reactions you have put into motion. People on Death Row are
often "born again" in this manner, using religion as if life
were an Etch-a-Sketch, and they can simply clear things up before they check
inconsistent with God's works to suggest you can change a
mathematical solution, wiping clean the slate of a Death Row murderer
for instance, by simply BELIEVING the answer is different.
Beliefs like this satisfy people's need to feel socially and spiritually
superior, and presuming God loves you more than he loves someone else
brings self-satisfaction. Believing this however, based
on the fairness and impartiality of God's works, would realistically be no more effective
in pushing you to the front of God's Line than believing the
"indulgences" people purchased back in the Middle Ages were
effective in absolving them of their sins. In fact, the principle is the same:
an easy (but misguided) way to manipulate God into overlooking your
sins rather than
accepting punishment for them like everyone else.
A theory that is
inconsistent with God's works would not be consistent with God. I
would therefore suggest that that is not the meaning Jesus intended.
argue that “resurrection of the dead” refers to the fact that we
will all come back as walking zombie corpses at the end of the world using the bodies we have today. However, that would
place emphasis on the physical aspects of our existence, and the Bible
suggests we concern ourselves more with the intangible aspects.
Therefore, this interpretation is, perhaps, questionable.
"second coming" that Jesus was promising to appear in the
sky and float down to us with arms outstretched and a swelling
Hollywood music soundtrack in the background.
Or we can
presume Jesus referred to reincarnation, and that he intended
our interpretation of each of those terms to be literal.
In the year
553AD, at the Second Council of Constantinople, the Christian Church
banished belief in the soul's existence before conception (a
subjective conclusion they
did not, and could not prove). However, the word "reincarnation" - or any
equivalent - wasn't mentioned in the minutes of the Council. Later interpretation of this ruling was that reincarnation could not occur
because the soul did not
exist before conception. (If you are Christian and were taught that
reincarnation is not true, that Council is the reason why.)
of that vote may be questioned, though, as the Pope did not attend, and
because hardly any bishops from the Western
Roman Empire were present. If they had not been invited, the
Council was not valid and reincarnation is technically still compatible with
Christianity. See: Reincarnation:
The Phoenix Fire Mystery, by Sylvia Cranston.
words, Jesus must have specifically taught reincarnation because early Christians believed in
it until 533AD, when a Council, whose validity is in question, made
reincarnation be “not true” forever, and the Christian Church
assigned new meaning to existing Biblical references like "born
opinion, they did NOT make reincarnation “not true” by deciding it
suddenly wasn’t, just as mankind did not make the world flat by condemning
and persecuting the people who said it was round.
as ever, is simply my opinion.