It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
Reincarnation – Could it possibly exist?
Reincarnation in Hindu Art
The word "reincarnation" derives from Latin, literally meaning, "entering the flesh again". The Greek equivalent metempsychosis (μετεμψύχωσις) roughly corresponds to the common English phrase "transmigration of the soul" and also usually connotes reincarnation after death
a : being something that may or may not occur b : being something that may or may not be true or actual
Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn't.
Considering that reincarnation was born from the imagination of Man in a time long ago, and cannot be substantiated by hard facts and data, it falls into the category in which it can easily be dismissed.
Is there good evidence for reincarnation? Researchers say yes.
Where do such fears come from? The answer, of course, can be psychologically complex, but researchers think that in some cases there might be a connection to a previous life.
In one fascinating case, an Indian boy claimed to remember the life of a man named Maha Ram, who was killed with a shotgun fired at close range. This boy had an array of birthmarks in the center of his chest that looked like they could possibly correspond to a shotgun blast. So the story was checked out. Indeed, there was a man named Maha Ram who was killed by a shotgun blast to the chest. An autopsy report recorded the man's chest wounds -- which corresponded directly with the boy's birthmarks.
In Beirut, a young boy described in detail his past life of being a mechanic killed by being thrown from his car. The specific facts he provided, including his age and family members’ and friends’ names, checked out to be true. He was even able to recall the exact location of the accident which took his life.
"These children supply names of towns and relatives, occupations and relationships, attitudes and emotions that, in hundreds of cases around the world, are unique to a single dead individual, often apparently unknown to their present families.
He came to believe that neither environment nor heredity could account for certain phobias, illnesses and special abilities, and that some form of personality or memory transfer might provide a third type of explanation. He was never able to suggest how personality traits might survive physical death, much less be carried from one body to another, and was careful not to commit himself fully to the position that reincarnation occurs.
Stevenson's position was that certain phobias, philias, unusual abilities and illnesses could not be explained by heredity or the environment, and that personality transfer provided a third type of explanation, though he was never able to suggest what kind of physical process might be involved.
Tucker felt unfulfilled by his work in child psychiatry, but was open to the possibility that humans are more than their physical bodies and wished to investigate the matter further. Though raised as a Southern Baptist, Tucker does not subscribe to any particular religion, and claims to be skeptical about reincarnation, but sees it as providing the best explanation for phenomena associated with the strongest cases investigated to date. After reading Ian Stevenson's work Tucker became intrigued by children’s reported past-life memories and by the prospect of studying them.
There are no imperial facts of data that specifically elevates reincarnation from the realm of fairy tales to the arena of possibilities.
Just because Man can create something out of pure imagination, does not make it possible.
Anne Frank died in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1945. Less than ten years later, in 1954, Barbro Karlen was born to Christian parents in Sweden. When she was less than three years old, Barbro told her parents that her name was not Barbro, but Anne Frank.
The challenge is to prove reincarnation using scientific methods, such as DNA analysis, which may show that certain portions of DNA sequencing are unique to an incarnating soul. This observation suggests that the soul provides an energy template, like a hologram around which the body forms.
If you have a very commanding argument that you can’t refute, not to accept the argument is to act irrationally.
Maybe my opponent can explain why Barbro had a past life recollection at three years old. Or maybe he can explain the personality traits from both Anne and Barbro as the latter got older. Or maybe he can also explain why there is physical evidence between the two. Or perhaps, he can explain why they both had extraordinary and identical literary skills and writing attributes.
SonoftheSun wins this debate. SonoftheSun was smart to keep emphasizing that it "could be"and is "possible". Had the phrasing of the debate title been "Reincarnation exists" Id have given the debate to sheepslayer. Therefore a debater should pay attention to the way debate titles are phrased because it sets the tone for the debate. SonoftheSun did fairly good documenting some of the best cases for Reincarnation. While I am not yet convinced of Reincarnation I liked the presentation and feel that sheepslayer could have done a little more to buffer his stance. He instead spent most of his time simply refuting whatever came up on the basis that there are no hard facts. In Debating a mere possibility however, he would have had to show why Reincarnation is not a possibility with a little more passion.
My judgment SonoftheSun vs Sheepslayer247 Both provided a really good read on the subject. Both provided compelling arguments for the topic. But in the end, there can be only one What sold it for me was this line from Sheepslayer. "In other words, we are using that which cannot be proven possible to prove the possibility of reincarnation? " I would award the win to Sheepslayer.
am glad to have been given the opportunity to judge this thread. This has been an excellent debate and I fully appreciate the efforts of both sides.
In round one:
Both posters appropriately gave a simple definition of what reincarnation is.
SonoftheSun smartly approaches the pro position that reincarnation can be proven to be a possibility. Sun brings up the viewpoint that all life is cyclical and repeated.Sun deftly avoids the religious connection by choosing the tougher approach that it can be proven as a possibility through different scientific methods
Sheepslayer247 mentioned the human question and curiosity of what happens after death. Sheep chose to bring in the religious element, claims that reincarnation is a belief as a result. And inaccurately claims that the Christian beliefs believe in reincarnation, which is incorrect. While there may be Christians that believe in reincarnation, it is not part of the standard religious doctrine, even though it is mentioned briefly in the old testament.
While both posters made the point and agreed that the origins of reincarnation are unknown, Sheep makes a bold and contradictory statement that it was born from the imagination of man.
Round 1 goes to SonoftheSun
In round 2, SonoftheSun provides a lot of evidence and sources that explain the probability for the existence of reincarnation.
Interestingly, Sheepslayer uses evidence of one of the same researchers for their con position to dispute the validity of the science behind it. But speculates as to why the researchers will not out right say that it is reincarnation with this statement:
"I think the answer is that both Stevenson and Tucker realize that their “evidence”, while interesting, is complete speculation, hearsay, false-equivalencies and nothing more than a myriad of loosely connected coincidences that make for a great read….but hold no empirical weight."
While Sheep makes a very interesting and valid argument on how that these stories occur in regions where reincarnation occurs, he contradicts his previous statement on how it occurs in many religions and how it is accepted on every continent, worldwide.
Sheep also makes a valid point on how the children could possibly be manipulated into believing that they were reincarnated.
Sheep further claims that there is no proof of reincarnation, without any evidence to back this statement up.Speculation into the motives of reincarnation researchers is not proof.
Round 2 goes to SonoftheSun
SonoftheSun makes a compelling argument by listing dozens of scientists who have researched into reincarnation. Sun further counter-argues Sheep's point on how many cases there are of children who's past life was collaborated. While pointing out that the ages of the children would of made it hard to influence, this statement could of been made stronger by providing information as to how a child, no matter what age, could of gained this information without tampering.
Like an ace up the sleeve, Sun provides information on how DNA evidence, by serious scientists, on how information can be possibly be found on DNA segments.
Sheep continues in the third round riding on a previous statement that reincarnation is a belief system. And claims that none of the researchers have come out with hard evidence and therefor, have not outright claimed that reincarnation exits.
Sheep deftly disproves the Barbro, Anne Frank connection, that there is no evidence to back it up. And how similarities is not proof. And accurately depicts and supports their previous stance that scientists and believers alike will see evidence where they want too.
Round 3 goes to Sheepslayer247
Sheepslayer had the very difficult position of debating a subject that is already framed to be unwinnable, since there is no science to disprove that reincarnation exists. There is no way to prove scientifically that reincarnation doesn't exist. But the debate wasn't about hard evidence, it was about possibility. But instead of profiting on this point, and stay with scientific viewpoints, Sheep chose to attack from a belief standpoint, and instead speculate on the science itself.
SonoftheSun also chose a hard target by going with scientific method and viable scientists, they seem to focus more on the amount of proof out there.
Because this is just about possibility, and not absolute proof, Sun did show us that reincarnation is a possibility. While Sheep was able to discredit the proof somewhat in his final round, they seemed focused on absolutes, and not possibility, with a whole lot of speculation thrown in.
The winner of this debate is SonoftheSun