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Immortality of Consciousness – Reincarnation

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posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:14 AM

Were an Asiatic to ask me for a definition of Europe, I should be forced to answer him: It is that part of the world which is haunted by the incredible delusion that man was created out of nothing, and that his present birth is his first entrance into life.


I find the topic of reincarnation fascinating. This post is intended to highlight certain studied cases of children remembering past lives that purportedly serve as proof of reincarnation, which I find particularly interesting.

I begin with a brief background and then delve into the specifics of the case studies.

Sources, references, and resources are included throughout and listed at the end (along with additional reading materials for those interested).

Nearly everyone outside the range of orthodox Christianity, Judaism, Islam, and Science—the last being a secular religion for many persons—believes in reincarnation.

-Dr. Ian Stevenson

There are several ancient claims to individuals remembering previous lives. For instance, both Pythagoras and Apollonius claimed to remember having lived before. In the sixteenth century, Tulsidas, the translator of the Ramayana, claimed to remember a previous life. In the eighteenth century, the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb, although a Muslim who did not believe in reincarnation, was sufficiently open-minded to interrogate witnesses to a case in the manner of a modern investigator. In the early nineteenth century, a Japanese boy named Katsugoro seemed to remember the life of a farmer’s son. After this case, no other cases appeared to have been documented until 1898, when the summaries of six Burmese cases appeared in print.

In the 1950s, psychiatry professor Dr. Ian Stevenson began to collect and systematically compare accounts of reincarnation.

Stevenson’s primary method is to interview the subject and all firsthand witnesses. Repeated interviews are usually held with the most important informants in order to check the consistency of their reports, and to study details previously missed. In addition, Stevenson locates and copies birth certificates, hospital records, and reports of postmortem examinations in order to substantiate details of the witnesses’ accounts.

In a typical case, a child between the ages of two and five begins to speak of a previous life. In some cases this occurs as soon as the child is able to speak, although it is often triggered by an incident or observation that is related to those memories. Often the child will use adult expressions and behave in a way that is strange for a child, but which seems entirely appropriate for the previous personality. The memories of the previous life usually begin to fade by ages five or six, and are usually gone by age eight, although there are exceptions to this rule. The unusual behavior and dispositions generally persist for some time after the specific memories have disappeared, although these too seem to fade with time and maturity.


The Case of Corliss Chotkin Jr.

This case started with a prediction by an elderly Tlinget fisherman named Victor Vincent, who, shortly before his death in Alaska, told his niece, Irene Chotkin, that he would be reborn as her son. He showed Mrs. Chotkin two scars, one on his nose and one on his back, and told her that she would recognize him by birthmarks on his body corresponding to these scars. Victor Vincent had become very fond of his niece and told her: “I know I will have a good home.”

In the spring of 1946, Victor Vincent died. About eighteen months later, on December 15, 1947, Mrs. Chotkin gave birth to a baby boy, who was named after his father. Corliss Chotkin Jr. had two birthmarks, which his mother said were of exactly the same shape and location as the scars Victor Vincent had pointed to in his prediction of his rebirth.

One day when Corliss was thirteen months old, his mother was trying to get him to repeat his name. Instead, he replied petulantly, “Don’t you know me? I’m Kahkody.” Victor Vincent had been a full-blooded Tlinget, and Kahkody had been his tribal name. When Mrs. Chotkin told one of her aunts about the boy’s claim to be Kahkody, the older woman claimed that she had dreamed shortly before Corliss’s birth that Victor Vincent was coming to live with the Chotkins. Mrs. Chotkin was sure that she had not told her aunt about Victor Vincent’s prediction before she heard about this dream.

When Corliss was two years old and being wheeled along the docks by his mother, he spontaneously recognized a stepdaughter of Victor Vincent. They were not there to meet her, and neither Mrs. Chotkin nor her other child had noticed the woman before Corliss pointed her out. Corliss showed great excitement on seeing her, jumping up and down, saying “There’s my Susie.” Corliss hugged her affectionately, called her by her Tlingit tribal name, and kept repeating “My Susie.”

On another occasion when he was two, Corliss spontaneously recognized Victor’s son William, saying, “There is William, my son.” On another he recognized the widow of Victor Vincent, and on several other occasions he recognized old friends of Victor Vincent. All these recognitions occurred by the time Corliss was six years old.

According to Corliss’s mother, he had also mentioned two events in Victor Vincent’s life that she did not think he could have learned about normally. In addition, he shared several behavioral traits with Victor Vincent: Corliss combed his hair in a very similar manner; like Victor, Corliss also stuttered; both were left-handed; and both had a strong interest in boats and being on the water. Corliss also showed a precocious aptitude for handling and repairing engines, and, according to his mother, had taught himself to run boat engines without lessons.

After the age of nine, Corliss made fewer remarks about the previous life he seemed to remember, and when Stevenson interviewed him in 1962, when he was fifteen, he said he remembered nothing of the previous life. By 1972, when Stevenson met him for the last time, Corliss had almost completely overcome his stuttering, although he maintained his interest in boat engines.

Evidence for Reincarnation

edit on 12-2-2016 by ExNihiloRed because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:14 AM
The Case of the Pollock Twins

On May 5, 1957, a crazed automobile driver deliberately drove her car onto the sidewalk of a street in Hexham, England, killing two sisters, Joanna and Jacqueline Pollock, who had been walking to Sunday school. Joanna was eleven years old, Jacqueline six. The driver had been distraught over losing her own children in a custody battle, and was later confined to a mental hospital.

The parents grieved, but John Pollock believed that the girls had survived death, and felt that they remained close to the family. When his wife Florence became pregnant again early in 1958, he confidently asserted that the two deceased sisters would be reborn as twins. Despite the opinion of her physician that she would have a single baby (he could only hear one fetal heartbeat), on October 4, 1958, Florence Pollock gave birth to twin girls.

John and Florence soon noticed that Jennifer, the younger twin, had two birthmarks that corresponded in location and size to two marks on Jacqueline’s body. One was on her forehead, and matched a scar that persisted on Jacqueline’s forehead after she had fallen and cut herself. The other was on her left side, and matched a similar congenital mark that had been on Jacqueline.

Both Gillian and Jennifer were a little slow in acquiring speech, not really speaking coherently until they were about three years old. Between the ages of three and six they made a few statements about the lives of their deceased sisters, and recognized some objects that their deceased sisters had owned. One incident concerned a couple of dolls that had been packed in a box and put in an attic after the deaths of Joanna and Jacqueline. Years later the box was opened and the dolls were given to Gillian and Jennifer, who identified them as “Mary” and “Susan,” the names the dead girls had given them. Gillian claimed the one that had belonged to Joanna, and Jennifer claimed the one that had belonged to Jacqueline.

When the twins were less than a year old, the family had moved away from Hexham. The twins did not return there until their parents took them there on a trip when they were about four. According to their father, the twins spontaneously mentioned two places—a playground and a school—before these came into view. John Pollock did not believe that there was any normal way the girls could have acquired knowledge of the school or the park.

The behavior of the twins also corresponded in some respects with that of their deceased sisters. Jennifer was somewhat dependent on her older twin, Gillian, just as Jacqueline had been on her older sister, Joanna. Gillian gave the general impression of being more mature than Jennifer, and like Joanna, was very generous, and more interested in playacting with costumes than her sister.

The Pollock Twins – Life After Death

In the previous two cases the children did not repeat anything that their family members did not already know. But the following two cases are very different in this regard.

The Bishen Chand Case

Bishen Chand Kapoor was born in 1921, in Bareilly, India. As he gradually gained the power of speech, he began to speak of a previous life in Pilibhit, a town approximately fifty kilometers east of Bareilly. No one in Bishen’s family knew anyone there.

But by the time Bishen Chand was five, he had mentioned many details of a previous life. He claimed that his name had been Laxmi Narain, and that he had an uncle named Har Narain. He also claimed that his father had been a wealthy landowner, and frequently expressed disdain for his present family’s poverty. His father earned the meager salary of a clerk in the railway service, and could only support his family with difficulty. Bishen Chand reproached his father for his poverty, tore cotton clothes off and demanded silk ones, and complained that even the servants in his previous life would not touch the food they insisted he eat.

Once, when Bishen Chand was about five, his older sister caught him drinking brandy, which finally explained the diminishing supply of brandy that his family kept in the house for medicinal purposes. When this matter was discussed with him, he claimed that he was accustomed to drinking. On another occasion around this time, he recommended that his father acquire a mistress. He claimed to have had a mistress in his previous life, and boasted that he had once killed a man he had spotted coming out of her apartment. The influence of his wealthy family, he said, had enabled him to escape punishment.

Bishen Chand’s father mentioned his son’s statements to another man, who, in turn, informed K. K. Sahay, a prominent and respected attorney in Bareilly. Sahay became interested in the case, and visited Bishen Chand’s family in the summer of 1926, writing down twenty-one statements the boy made about the life he claimed to remember. He persuaded Bishen Chand’s father to undertake a visit to Pilibhit to verify the boy’s statements, and on August 1, 1926 the two men took Bishen Chand and his older brother to Pilibhit.

Once in Pilibhit, Bishen Chand recognized various places and made additional statements about his previous life. A crowd of curious onlookers gathered, and someone produced an old photograph of Laxmi Narain and Har Narain. In the presence of the crowd Bishen Chand put his finger on the photograph of Har Narain and said “Here is Har Narain and here I,” which seemed to establish his identity as Laxmi Narain, although Har Narain turned out to be his father, not his uncle.

Laxmi Narain had been the spoiled son of a wealthy landowner, who had died two years before Bishen Chand was born. After Har Narain had died when Laxmi was about eighteen, Laxmi had squandered the family fortune on high living and debauchery, although, like his father, he also seems to have been generous in donating his money to the needy. He had been involved with a prostitute who still lived in Pilibhit, and in a jealous rage had once killed a man he spotted coming out of her apartment. His family was influential enough to get the charges dropped, but he died of natural causes a few months later, at the age of thirty-two.

The attorney Sahay published his account of that remarkable day in the national newspaper The Leader in August 1926. According to this account, Bishen Chand recognized the house of Sander Lal, which he had previously described as having a green gate. Sahay verified that the gate was painted with a faded varnish, but was still green. He also recognized the house of Har Narain, which, much to his distress, had fallen into a state of disrepair and had been abandoned. He pointed out the courtyard where parties had been held, noted where a collapsed staircase had once stood, and pointed to where the women’s quarters once existed. People in the crowd following the boy repeatedly asked him for the name of the prostitute he had associated with in the previous life. Bishen Chand reluctantly answered “Padma,” which people in the crowd certified was correct.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:14 AM

When the boy was presented with a set of tabla—a pair of drums—he surprised his family by playing them skillfully, as Laxmi Narain had been fond of doing. His father said that Bishen had never even seen tabla before. The mother of Laxmi Narain was still living, and when the boy was brought to her she asked him a series of test questions that convinced her that he was her surviving son. The most dramatic example concerned some treasure that it was thought Har Narain had hid in his house before he died. WhenLaxmi’s mother asked Bishen about this, he led the way to a room in the old house. After a subsequent search, the treasure was found in this room, and turned out to consist of gold coins.

Nearly all of Bishen Chand’s statements that could be verified were correct. Of the twenty-one statements that Sahay had written down before verification was attempted, fourteen were subsequently verified. Six items were not verified, but most of these were thought to be almost certainly correct. Only one item was wrong—the name of Har Narain was given correctly, but turned out to be Laxmi’s father, not his uncle.

Bishen Chand claimed that Laxmi Narain had known how to speak Urdu, a variant of Hindi that civil servants in India at that time were required to use. As Laxmi Narain had worked in government service for a time, this does seem likely. Bishen’s older brother, Bipan, said that when Bishen was a child he could read Urdu despite not receiving any instruction. Bishen’s father told how Bishen unexpectedly used two Urdu words when he was a child: masurate instead of the Hindi word zenana (“women’s quarters”) and kofal instead of the Hindi word tala (“lock”).

At any rate, following the first visit to Pilibhit at the age of five, Bishen established affectionate relations with Laxmi’s mother, and after she moved to Bareilly he would visit her frequently. He also attempted to establish a relationship with Padma, although she quite naturally considered this inappropriate.

When Bishen was a child, he had a quick temper. As mentioned earlier, his childhood behavior was that of a rich spoiled young man: he would frequently boast of the murder he remembered committing, would rebuke his parents for their poverty, and would demand food and clothing that his parents could not afford. However, as he grew older, his attitude gradually changed. The memory of the murder persisted long after other memories of the previous life had faded. It gradually occurred to Bishen that perhaps he had been born into poverty because of the murder that Laxmi Narain had committed. He became a reformed person, and when Stevenson knew him in later life, he showed no trace of violent behavior. Remorse had replaced haughtiness; and Stevenson felt himself in the presence of a generous person of limited means, who had learned that material goods and carnal pleasures do not bring happiness.

In his detailed review of this case, Stevenson considers it to be of considerable significance. Numerous statements were written down by a respected attorney before verification was attempted, and many people who had personally known the previous personality were still alive to verify Bishen’s claims. In addition, two skills were shown—playing the tablas and understanding Urdu—which Bishen apparently had no way of acquiring normally. As for the possibility of fraud, no financial gain was possible: it was well known that Laxmi Narain had squandered the family fortune, leaving the surviving members almost destitute, and unable to maintain the family home. Finally, can we reasonably suppose that a father would want his son to boast of a murder, and to scoff at his family’s poverty?

Some Questions Concerning Reincarnation and the Fate of Victims of Accidents & Violence

Extract 7: Reincarnation, Ian Stevenson

The Case of Swarnlata Mishra

Swarnlata Mishra, daughter of Sri M. L. Mishra, was born on March 2, 1948. When she was three years old, her family lived in Panna, and one day her father took her with him on a trip 170 miles south. On the way back, as they passed through the city of Katni—about a hundred miles south of Panna—Swarnlata unexpectedly asked the driver of the truck to turn down a road toward “my house.” The driver did not follow her request, of course. A little while later, when the group was taking tea in Katni, Swarnlata told her father that they could have much better tea at “her house” nearby. As puzzling as these statements were, Sri Mishra became even more puzzled when he learned that Swarnlata later told other children in the family further details about a previous life she claimed to remember in Katni, as part of a family named Pathak. At the time, the Mishra family did not know anyone by the name of Pathak in Katni.

Two years later, the Mishra family moved forty miles west to Chhatarpur. When she was about five, Swarnlata began performing unusual songs and dances, in a language incomprehensible to her parents. In 1958, when she was ten and had been talking about a previous life for about six years, Swarnlata met a woman from the area of Katni that she claimed to recognize from a previous life in that city. Sri Mishra was now able to confirm some of his daughter’s statements, and began to take them more seriously. In March 1959, Sri H. N. Banerjee investigated the case, and wrote down nine statements that Swarnlata made about the Pathak residence in Katni before attempting verification.

Stevenson investigated the case in 1961, and checked the details that Banerjee had reported.

Guided by Swarnlata’s statements, Banerjee had found the Pathak residence, and confirmed the nine statements. He found that her statements corresponded closely with the life of Biya, daughter of a family called Pathak in Katni, and deceased wife of a man named Pandey. Biya had died in 1939, nine years before Swarnlata was born. Some of Swarnlata’s statements—such as her description of the family house being only partly finished—were no longer true, but had been true twenty years earlier when Biya was living.

In the summer of 1959, members of the Pathak family and of Biya’s marital family traveled to Chhatarpur to meet her. Without introductions, Swarnlata recognized all of them, called them by their correct name, and related personal incidents concerning them that Biya would have known. The Pathaks came to accept Swarnlata as Biya reborn. Shortly after these visits, Swarnlata and members of her family traveled to Katni and then to Maihar, where the deceased Biya had lived much of her married life and had died. In these towns she recognized additional people and places, and commented on the changes that had taken place since the death of Biya. On one instance, she recognized a friend of the Pathak family, and then correctly pointed out that the man did not wear spectacles when Biya knew him; on another occasion, she inquired about a parapet at the back of the Pathak residence in Katni, which had been removed since the death of Biya. All together her witnessed recognition of people amount to twenty, and despite several attempts to mislead her, she was never fooled.

edit on 12-2-2016 by ExNihiloRed because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:14 AM

As mentioned earlier, Swarnlata began performing songs and dances when she was about five, in a language that was incomprehensible to her parents. The language of the songs was identified as Bengali by Professor P. Pal, a native of Bengal. This seemed to present a problem: both Swarnlata and Biya spoke Hindi, and neither had learned Bengali. Swarnlata claimed that she had learned the songs and dances from a friend named Madhu, during a previous life in between the lives of Biya and Swarnlata. She stated that after her life as Biya, she was reborn as a girl named Kamlesh in Sylhet, lived to about nine, and was then reborn into the Mishra family. Although Stevenson could not identify a child whose life corresponded with the fragmentary information given by Swarnlata, he did think that her account of life in Sylhet contained several plausible features, such as details of geography. Perhaps of more importance, the people of Sylhet speak mostly Bengali.

Although the name Kamlesh is unusual for a Bengali family, a non-Bengali speaker could, of course, learn a song from a Bengali friend. It should be noted that Swarnlata could not translate the words for her parents, and that Swarnlata’s parents were certain that she had not had contact with Bengali-speaking persons from whom she could have learned the songs. Although the songs had been recorded and played in certain films, Swarnlata’s parents had not heard these songs before. Since female children in Asia are kept under close surveillance by their families, it seems very doubtful that Swarnlata could have learned these songs and dances without her parents’ knowledge.

As mentioned, the Pathak family accepted Swarnlata as Biya reborn. Among members of her present family in Chhatarpur, Swarnlata behaved like a child, although she was somewhat more serious and mature than the average child her age. But among the Pathaks, she behaved like an older sister of men forty or more years her senior, who completely accepted her as their older sister returned. One of her brothers, Rajendra Pathak, stated that he had no convictions regarding reincarnation prior to Swarnlata’s visit, which had completely changed his mind.

Swarnlata’s behavior around Biya’s children depended on who was present. If the parents or elders of her current family were around, she was reserved. But Murli Pandey reported that if Swarnlata was alone with him or her brother, she relaxed and treated them as a mother would treat her sons—despite the fact that he was thirty-five in 1961 and Swarnlata was twelve. He and his brother did not find this behavior inappropriate, as they, too, accepted her as Biya reborn. Like his uncle, Sri Murli Pandey also said that he did not believe in reincarnation until he met Swarnlata.

As Swarnlata grew older she spoke less about a previous life as Biya, but unlike most other children who claim to remember previous lives, her memories did not seem to fade. Her parents had done nothing to suppress her statements, and as the years went by she remained close to both her own and the Pathak family.

Sweet Swarnlata

Swarnalata Remembers

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience.

-Tielhard de Chardin

Sources and further reading for those interested:

Science and the Afterlife Experience: Evidence for the Immortality of Consciousness

The Evidence for Survival from Claimed Memories of Former Incarnations by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 54:51-71 and 95-117, 1960). Dr. Stevenson's early essay about cases suggestive of reincarnation and several interpretations of them.

Some Questions Related to Cases of the Reincarnation Type by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 68:395-416, 1974). A discussion of some frequently asked questions about reincarnation.

A Preliminary Report of a New Case of Responsive Xenoglossy: The Case of Gretchen by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 70:65-77, 1976). A report of a case in which the subject, under hypnosis, spoke and conversed in German, a language that she seems not to have learned normally.

The Explanatory Value of the Idea of Reincarnation by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. 164:305-326, 1977). A consideration of the ways in which the concept of reincarnation might supplement those of heredity and environment in explaining some poorly understood aspects of human behavior and development.

The Southeast Asian Interpretation of Gender Dysphoria: An Illustrative Case Report by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. 165:201-208, 1977). Suggesting that gender identity confusion may derive from influences of a previous life as a member of the opposite sex, Dr. Stevenson reports the case of a girl who claims to remember a previous life as a man.

A Preliminary Report on an Unusual Case of the Reincarnation Type with Xenoglossy by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of the American Society of Psychical Research 74: 331-348, 1980). A report of a case of a woman who periodically assumes a second personality, speaking only a language she does not know in her normal state. She has also given verified details about another life she claims to have lived.

American Children Who Claim to Remember Previous Lives by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. 171:742-748, 1983). Report of an analysis of 79 cases of American children who claim to remember a previous life.

A Review and Analysis of "Unsolved" Cases of the Reincarnation Type: I. Introduction and Illustrative Case Reports by Dr. Ian Stevenson, Dr. Emily Williams Cook et al. (Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 77:45-62, 1983). Brief reports of 7 cases of the reincarnation type in which no deceased person corresponding to the child subject's statements has been found.

edit on 12-2-2016 by ExNihiloRed because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:15 AM
A Review and Analysis of "Unsolved" Cases of the Reincarnation Type: II. Comparison of Features of Solved and Unsolved Case by Dr. Ian Stevenson, Dr. Emily Williams Cook et al. (Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 77:115-135, 1983). Report of an analysis and comparison of 856 solved and unsolved reincarnation cases with regard to 9 important features.

The Belief in Reincarnation Among the Igbo of Nigeria by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Asian and African Studies XX:13-30, 1985.) A summary of the belief in reincarnation among the Igbo with a description of the repeater children, called ogbanjes by the Igbo people.

Characteristics of Cases of the Reincarnation Type Among the Igbo of Nigeria by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Asian and African Studies XXI:204-216, 1986). A description of the principle features found in 57 cases of the reincarnation type occurring among the Igbo people. Several tables compare the incidence of the main features of the cases in nine or ten different cultures.

Indian Cases of the Reincarnation Type Two Generations Apart by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. Satwant Pasricha. (Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 54(809):239-246, 1987). Cases of the reincarnation type from the early years of this century show features closely resembling those of cases whose subjects were born after 1965.

Deception and Self-Deception in Cases of the Reincarnation Type: Seven Illustrative Cases in Asia by Dr. Ian Stevenson, Dr. Satwant Pasricha and Godwin Samararatne. (Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research 82:1-31, 1988). Detailed reports of 7 cases of the reincarnation type in Asia that seemed to be authentic at first but, on investigation, proved to be best interpreted as instances of deception or self-deception.

Two Correlates of Violent Death in Cases of the Reincarnation Type by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. N. K. Chadha. (Journal of the Society for Psychical Research 55(811):71-79, 1988). In the cases of children remembering previous lives that ended violently the interval between death of the deceased person whose life is remembered and the subject's birth is shorter, on average, than in cases having a natural death in the previous life. Also, children remembering violent deaths tend to speak about the previous life at an earlier age than do children who remember lives that ended naturally.

Three New Cases of the Reincarnation Type in Sri Lanka with Written Records Made before Verification by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. 176:741, 1988). Short summaries of three recent cases of the valuable type in which the child's statements were recorded in writing before they were verified.

Three New Cases of the Reincarnation Type in Sri Lanka with Written Records Made before Verification by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Godwin Samararatne. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 2:217-238, 1988). A longer version of above, including more detail about the 3 cases reported.

Phobias in Children Who Claim to Remember Previous Lives by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 4:243-254, 1990). A discussion of the phobias that occur among many children who seem to remember a previous life, and some possible explanations for these phobias.

Birthmarks and Birth Defects Corresponding to Wounds on Deceased Person by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 7:403-410, 1993). A short summary of research on the cases of children who claim to remember previous lives and who have birthmarks or birth defects that correspond to wounds in the claimed previous life.

Does the Socio-Psychological Hypothesis Explain Cases of the Reincarnation Type? by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. Sybo Schouten. (Journal of Nervous and Mental Disorder. 186:504-506, 1998). Cases of the reincarnation type (in India and Sri Lanka) in which a written record of the subject's statements was made only after the families concerned had met did not have more statements and more correct ones than cases in which a written record was made before the statements were verified.

Do Cases of the Reincarnation Type Show Similar Features Over Many Years? A Study of Turkish Cases a Generation Apart by Dr. Jürgen Keil and Dr. Ian Stevenson. ( Journal of Scientific Exploration 13(2):189-198, 1999). In Turkey the features of 45 cases studied by one investigator were compared with the features of 45 other cases studied nearly a generation later by another investigator. Overall, the two groups of cases showed closely similar features. The cases appear to be a natural phenomenon occurring over many years.

The Phenomenon of Claimed Memories of Previous Lives: Possible Interpretations and Importance by Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Medical Hypotheses 54(4):652-659, 2000). The hypothesis of previous lives can contribute to the further understanding of several conditions, disorders, or abnormalities (such as phobias observed in early infancy, gender identity disorder, and behavioral and physical differences in one-egg [monozygotic] twins) that are not adequately explained by genetic and/or environmental influences.

The Stability of Assessments of Paranormal Connections in Reincarnation-Type Cases by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. Jürgen Keil. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 14 (3): 365-382, 2000). Fifteen cases of children who claimed to remember a previous life were investigated twice and independently with an average interval of 22 years between the investigations. The reports were evaluated for evidence of a paranormal process. With the lapse of time informants lost some details; but with one possible exception there was no evidence of increased claims of paranormality in the later investigations.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:15 AM
An Unusual Birthmark Case Thought to be Linked to a Person Who Had Previously Died by Dr. Jürgen Keil and Dr. Jim B. Tucker. (Psychological Reports 87:1067-1074, 2000). A report of a case of a Burmese subject who was born with birthmarks and birth defects that were thought to be linked to the death of his mother's first husband in a parachute accident.

A Scale to Measure the Strength of Children's Claims of Previous Lives: Methodology and Initial Findings by Dr. Jim B. Tucker. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 14(4):571-581, 2000). 799 cases of children who claim to remember a previous life were analyzed using a scale that measured the strength of the claims. The analysis showed that in the stronger cases, the children tended to start talking about the previous life at an earlier age; they demonstrated more emotion in recalling the past life; and they showed greater facial resemblance to the deceased individual that they were said to have been.

Unusual Play in Young Children Who Claim to Remember Previous Live by Dr. Ian Stevenson ( Journal of Scientific Exploration 14(4):557-570, 2000). Children who, when they learn to speak express memories of previous lives, frequently engage in play that is unusual and has no model or other obvious stimulus in their family. The play seems to repeat the vocation or an avocation of the person whose life the child seems to remember. Sometimes the play reenacts the cause of death, such as drowning, of that person.

Ropelike Birthmarks on Children Who Claim to Remember Past Lives by Dr. Ian Stevenson (Psychological Reports 89:142-144, 2001). Description of birthmarks having the pattern of strands of a rope in a second known case includes some verification of the correspondence between the birthmarks and injuries from ropes on an identified deceased person.

Can Cultural Beliefs Cause a Gender Identity Disorder? by Dr. Jim B. Tucker and Dr. Jürgen Keil. (Journal of Psychology & Human Sexuality 13(2):21-30, 2001). Report of a child in Thailand who was born with a birthmark that matched a mark made on the body of his deceased grandmother. As he got older, he claimed to be his grandmother reborn, and he demonstrated cross-gender behavior.

The Similarity of Features of Reincarnation Type Cases over Many Years: A Third Study by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. Erlendur Haraldsson. ( Journal of Scientific Exploration 17(2):283-289, 2003). The principal features of two series of cases suggestive of reincarnation in Lebanon were compared. The series were investigated about a generation apart by two different investigators. In three important features the two series were closely similar; in other features they were not similar, probably because of differences in the thoroughness of investigation in the two series.

Cases of the Reincarnation Type with Memories from the Intermission Between Lives by Poonam Sharma and Dr. Jim B. Tucker. (Journal of Near-Death Studies 23(2):101-118, 2005). A minority of children who claim to remember previous lives also claim to remember events between lives. This analysis of statements from 35 Burmese subjects reveals patterns in the memories that they described. A comparison of these reports to reports of near-death experiences indicates significant areas of overlap.

Children Who Claim to Remember Previous Lives: Cases with Written Records Made before the Previous Personality Was Identified by Dr. Jürgen Keil and Dr. Jim B. Tucker. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 19(1): pp. 91-101, 2005). A case is presented in which a written record, made before the deceased individual was identified, documented that the numerous statements made by a Turkish boy about a previous life were accurate for the life of a man who lived 500 miles away and died 50 years before the boy was born. Other similar cases are reviewed.

Children of Myanmar Who Behave like Japanese Soldiers: A Possible Third Element in Personality by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. Jürgen Keil. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 19(2): pp. 171-183, 2005). Among 750 children of Myanmar who claimed to remember a previous life 24 spoke about having been Japanese soldiers killed, presumably during World War II. None gave verifiable information, but they all showed unusual behavior, such as insensitivity to pain, dislike of hot weather and, distaste for spicy food, which are typical of Japanese soldiers, but not of Burmese persons. Genetic factors cannot explain these cases; neither can encouragement of such behavior by the children’s parents. Reincarnation is suggested as a third component of human personality illustrated by these cases.

Some Bodily Malformations Attributed to Previous Lives by Dr. Satwant K. Pasricha, Dr. Jürgen Keil, Dr. Jim B. Tucker, and Dr. Ian Stevenson. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 19(3):359-383, 2005). This two part article examines cases in which children were born with abnormalities that were attributed to wounds from a previous life. Part I presents three cases in which evidence indicated a close correspondence between a child’s birthmark and a wound on a particular deceased person. Part II describes four cases of birth defects that were attributed to previous lives and looks at the evidence supporting that attribution. Photographs of the malformations are included.

Children Who Claim to Remember Previous Lives: Past, Present, and Future Research by Dr. Jim B. Tucker. (Journal of Scientific Exploration, 21(3): pp. 543-552, 2007). The research with Cases of the Reincarnation Type is reviewed, beginning with Ian Stevenson's initial paper on the phenomenon in 1961. Current projects and planned future projects are also discussed.
edit on 12-2-2016 by ExNihiloRed because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:16 AM
Ian Stevenson and cases of the reincarnation type by Dr. Jim B. Tucker (Journal of Scientific Exploration, 22 (1); 36-43, 2008). Ian Stevenson began studying children who claim to remember previous lives -- an endeavor that will surely be remembered as the primary focus of his life’s work -- almost by accident. Enjoying a successful mainstream career with some 60 publications in the medical and psychiatric literature to his credit, he had become chairman of the Department of Psychiatry and Neurology at the University of Virginia in 1957.

Children's reports of past-life memories: A review by Dr. Jim B. Tucker, (EXPLORE: The Journal of Science and Healing, 4(4):244-248, 2008). Researchers have studied young children’s reports of past-life memories for the last 45 years. The children usually describe a recent, ordinary life, and many of them have given enough details so that one particular deceased individual has been identified to match the children’s statements. These cases occur worldwide, and although they are easiest to find in cultures with a belief in reincarnation, many cases have been found in the West as well. This review explores the facets of this phenomenon and presents several recent American cases.

Review by Dr. Jim B. Tucker of "Can the Mind Survive beyond Death? In Pursuit of Scientific Evidence" by Satwant K. Pasricha. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 24:133-137, 2010). This two-volume set is divided into 22 chapters, each consisting of a previously published article, with Pasricha being sole author or lead author of 17 of them. (Full disclosure: I am one of four authors of one paper.) Though most deal with what are called cases of the reincarnation type, related areas such as near-death experiences (NDEs) are addressed as well.

Response to "How To Improve the Study and Documentation of Cases of the Reincarnation Type? A Reappraisal of the Case of Kemal Atasoy” written by Vitor Moura Visoni. The response is by Dr. Jürgen Keil and Dr. Jim B. Tucker. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 24:295-296, 2010). The Essay by Vitor Moura Visoni in JSE, 24(1), Spring 2010, pp. 101–108, makes a number of criticisms of our Research Article “Children Who Claim To Remember Previous Lives: Cases with Written Records Made before the Previous Personality Was Identified,” JSE, 19(1), Spring 2005, pp. 91–101, which we will address by section.

Experimental Birthmarks: New Cases of an Asian Practice by Dr. Jim B. Tucker and Dr. Jürgen Keil. (Journal of Scientific Exploration 27:263-276, 2013). Experimental birthmarks involve a practice in several countries in Asia in which the body of a dying or recently deceased person is marked with a substance, most often soot, in the belief that when the individual is reborn, the baby will bear a birthmark corresponding to the mark. This is usually done with the expectation that the rebirth will occur in the same family as the deceased individual. A field study was undertaken in Thailand and Myanmar (Burma) to examine such cases. Eighteen cases were found in which a baby was born with a birthmark that corresponded to a marking made on the body of a deceased person; in six of these, the child also made statements that the family believed were related to the life of the deceased individual. Possible etiologies for these cases are explored..

A Case of the Possession Type in India with Evidence of Paranormal Knowledge by Ian Stevenson et al. (Journal of Scientific Exploration. Vol. 3, No. I, pp. 81-101, 1989). A young married woman, Sumitra, in a village of northern India, apparently died and then revived. After a period of confusion she stated that she was a person named Shiva who had been murdered in another village. She gave enough details to permit verification of her statements, which corresponded to facts in the life of another young married woman called Shiva. Extensive interviews with 53 informants satisfied the investigators that the families concerned had been, as they claimed, completely unknown to each other before the case developed and that Sumitra had had no normal knowledge of the people and events in Shiva's life. The authors conclude that the subject demonstrated knowledge of another person's life obtained paranormally.

Psychological Evaluation of American Children Who Report Memories of Previous Lives by Jim Tucker et al. (Journal of Scientific Exploration, Vol. 28, No. 4, pp. 583–594, 2014). Some young children claim to have memories of a previous life, and they often show behaviors that appear related to the memories. This pilot study examined the psychological functioning of such children in the United States. Fifteen participants, ages 3–6 years, underwent testing with the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale (fourth edition) and the Children’s Apperception Test. The children’s composite intelligence scores on the Stanford-Binet were greater than one standard deviation above the mean, with relative strengths in verbal reasoning and quantitative reasoning.

The Flora Levy Lecture in the Humanities. This is an important autobiographical lecture given by Dr. Ian Stevenson in 1989.

Half A Career with the Paranormal. This is an essay by Dr. Ian Stevenson as it appeared in the Journal of Scientific Exploration, vol. 20 (1) Spring, 2006.

edit on 12-2-2016 by ExNihiloRed because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 11:52 AM
relevant and neat:

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 12:18 PM
a reply to: SaturnFX

I had never seen that before. Thank you for sharing. Very interesting to think about.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 01:19 PM
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

Just today there is a story on The Daily Mail about a young Australian guy that woke up from a two-week coma to discover that he could speak Mandarin. Subsequently, he is engaged to a Chinese gal.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 01:24 PM

originally posted by: Aliensun
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

Just today there is a story on The Daily Mail about a young Australian guy that woke up from a two-week coma to discover that he could speak Mandarin. Subsequently, he is engaged to a Chinese gal.

I just read about that. He had learned Mandarin in high school and spent time in China, but claims to never have been fluent. Not sure if that is attributable to reincarnation, or the amazing potential of our brains.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 01:55 PM
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

In the 1960s, Dr Stevenson set a combination lock using a secret word or phrase, and placed it in a filing cabinet in the department, telling his colleagues he would try to pass the code to them after his death. Emily Williams Kelly told The New York Times: "Presumably, if someone had a vivid dream about him, in which there seemed to be a word or a phrase that kept being repeated—I don't quite know how it would work—if it seemed promising enough, we would try to open it using the combination suggested." The Times reported that, as of February 2007, the lock remains unopened.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 02:31 PM
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

I personally believe in Immortality of Consciousness but it is yet to be scientifically proven. Main issue is that all of this is at best just a circumstantial evidence and I say at best because you have a human factor, human testimony which even if found convincing, it does not necessarily make it so. Information can be obtained by some other external forces, for example via hypnosis or mind control by someone who wants to make the case believable.

Birth marks and speaking foreign languages without ever hearing a language previously is what is making it even more interesting. Some of the cases I have read before but rest I hear for the first time so thanks for sharing. S+F for your effort Sir.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 02:38 PM
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

Seems to me Ex. that what you have provided above are accounts that can be used in attempts to prove, or verify the philosophical stance of reincarnation. I think this is all well and good. However all the accounts in the world can not prove anything, either for, or against any religious or metaphysical belief. At least this has been my experience.

The 'truth' of any spiritual belief can only be validated by the individual, and that only to a degree that satisfies the inner need of that individual for higher realization. By that I mean, how well does the idea of reincarnation meld with the rest of ones cosmological reference points. All the reference points you present above can only be that, reference points.

As we delve deeply into reincarnation, we find that there are varying interpretations of how it all works, different avenues that people offer on exactly how it all balances. For me what is important is how well any philosophical position can quell the existential turmoil of having none at all. I have found that reincarnation works well for a whole bunch of people, just as a belief in Jesus works for many others.

But it is not just believing. It is taking it in and swishing it around inside, spending not a moment in decision but rather a a much longer period of using it as a lens through which to evaluate the rest of reality as we encounter it in our daily lives. For some I guess it serves ones whole life. For others, after a period it may no longer meet the needs of ones developing understanding of reality.

My own appreciation of reincarnation has fluctuated over the years depending on how it well it provides a basis for a continuing exploration of our larger existence. That is, one form of belief can not satisfy the needs of a fluid interaction with whatever this is in which we find ourselves. So for me at least, reincarnation needs be an open ended philosophy, one that does not hold me to belief so much as a 'what if' system of being.

After all, all of these systems of belief are just that, systems of belief, and knowing now what we know about our own limited ability to understand this vast existence we need take them all with a grain of salt.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 03:02 PM
Why do those who "reincarnate" only seem to take on attributes of their most recent "incarnation", rather than those from 5 or 10 incarnations ago?

Also, reincarnation suggests a collective unconsciousness(Jung) or consciousness. If that is the case, anyone could have memories of any life ever lived.

I think reincarnation is a fascinating topic, but I'm yet to be convinced, even though I've had some experiences that could be construed as memories of a past life. But are they mine, or someone elses memories? Or neither.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 03:21 PM
a reply to: Klassified

Also, reincarnation suggests a collective unconsciousness(Jung) or consciousness. If that is the case, anyone could have memories of any life ever lived.

And isn't THAT, a tantalizing prospect worthy of exploration.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 03:25 PM
Eh, it's more like you get "poured back into the bucket" when you die.

In the examples above, I don't believe people are witnessing their past memories.

Their experiencing THE past memories, of everyone.

When you die and get dumped back into the bucket and mixed around, your memories are also sloshed around with the rest. When a pint of "you" gets poured, sometimes fragments of those memories get pulled along.

Like I said, those aren't YOUR past memories -- those are THE past memories.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 03:29 PM
a reply to: Prezbo369

To be fair, this experiment does not necessarily add to the evidence for or against reincarnation. Reincarnation does not necessarily imply an afterlife but really an ever-continuing life within multiple vessels. This post does not attempt to address or understand the interplay between afterlife and reincarnation.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 03:31 PM

originally posted by: Op3nM1nd3d
a reply to: ExNihiloRed

I personally believe in Immortality of Consciousness but it is yet to be scientifically proven. Main issue is that all of this is at best just a circumstantial evidence and I say at best because you have a human factor, human testimony which even if found convincing, it does not necessarily make it so. Information can be obtained by some other external forces, for example via hypnosis or mind control by someone who wants to make the case believable.

Birth marks and speaking foreign languages without ever hearing a language previously is what is making it even more interesting. Some of the cases I have read before but rest I hear for the first time so thanks for sharing. S+F for your effort Sir.

Thank you! You raise very interesting points about the inherent problems with the human factor. It definitely complicates the analysis.

posted on Feb, 12 2016 @ 03:36 PM
a reply to: TerryMcGuire

I can definitely understand the philosophical underpinnings of your perspective on the issues. I think these accounts merely evidence the possibility of reincarnation as an ends, but do not provide meaningful insight to the means. How it all works (if it is in fact occurring) is far from clear.

Precisely what it is that reincarnates is difficult to say: we may call it a mind, a center of consciousness, or a soul, but more than that we cannot say at present. Precisely how reincarnation works is likewise a mystery. But the fact that we cannot specify the details of the process does not logically prevent us from concluding that reincarnation occurs, at least to some people. The fact that until recently men did not know how the sun shone does not imply that it did not shine.

edit on 12-2-2016 by ExNihiloRed because: (no reason given)

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