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The Boy Who Lived Before - Documentary about a childs memories of another life


Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Now to continue. In your post you say we need "correct usage", and then go on to explain what you mean by that. So the second issue is how we define "lives" with respect to the subject matter, and this revolves around the concept of personal identity with respect to living beings. So if we can establish through some understanding that the identity of living Bob = the identity of dead Alice, then reincarnation is true, and your post is attempting to do that through the use of the words like "body", "soul" and "spirit", for which you have assigned a number of properties in a hierarchy of importance based on some arbitrary and subjective evaluations. So in your view it seems that our logical model would look something like this: living body + soul + spirit = whole person

Have I got this correct so far? If so please allow me to proceed before adding more facets to the analysis. If it's not correct, please let me know where the error is.
You have misunderstood me. I am not saying the living Bob is equal to the living Alice.

My use of the words are not arbitrary nor subjective - or no more than my attempts to understand quantum physics or the basic principles of Geometry. I am using terms from concepts that are very ancient as well as current - in certain streams of metaphysical thinking.

If we are to have a conversation about Psyche - we have to understand that the 'instrument' of perception is the human being itself. If you are looking for physical-based 'evidence' you may or may not find it or be 'convinced' even if you do. In this realm knowledge is obtained through inner work.

Logic is a slippery slope sometimes. The Heaven's Gate Cult is but one proof of that. It's one's premises that are key - and how they are obtained - and in my presentation I was attempting to give the background premises to the concept of reincarnation.

As follows: there is an organizing principle in life [premise]. Without that organizing principle the human body dissolves to it's constituent elements [premise] or 'dies'. Informed by that organizing principle - life, energy, life-energy (choose a word/phrase) - the human body appears as it does to us as 'alive'. The life-energy is the organizing principle of the living physical universe [premise]. However the physical body+life body is not the whole of it - for we feel and we think. The body asleep has both physical and life bodies. Where is feeling and thinking? The Soul is the interweaving of the emotional and mental bodies in relation to the life body and physical body. [Concept]
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Hence, what I am saying is: physical body+life body+emotional body+mental body. The Soul - the term as used generally - is the interrelationships of those bodies - mainly emotional and mental bodies. The Spiritual bodies come onto the scene at the nexus point of the lower mind and the higher mind. The higher mind is the beginning of the Spirit.

This is my understanding of what I have read. In this metaphysics scenario, reincarnation happens at the level of the Spirit - not at the level of the Soul. Therefore, what is happening when someone actually has 'memory' of previous lives - and many do - is they are engaging at a level higher than Soul, according to the concepts developed supporting this theory.
 
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USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
Whazzat? What parameters?
The premise as outlined here: https://www.theparacast.com/forum/threads/the-boy-who-lived-before-documentary-about-a-childs-memories-of-another-life.13954/#post-168868
I disagree. You're being summary. It's this way or that way. A or B. Doesn't work that way imo.
In the premise above, I'm not saying that I think things actually are one way or another. I'm saying that there are several versions of reincarnation, and the premise we're working with in this discussion assumes that deceased people are sometimes reborn in a manner which justifies the belief that they are actually someone who lived in the past, hence we can say that they lived a "past life" or are a "Boy Who Lived Before" ( the title of this thread ). As a logical consequence this model requires equivalence of personhood in order to claim that reincarnation is true. This equivalence can be expressed as:

living person A = deceased person B, or more simply living Bob = Dead Alice.


We seemed to be in agreement on the above premise, and you elaborated by describing the various components that constitute a "person". However before we continue with that, because you now seem confused as indicated in the quote above ( "Whazzat? What parameters?" ) we need to establish whether or not we are in agreement on the basic premise as outlined above. If yes, then we can have a closer look at the concept of how we define personhood. If not, then the premise you have for reincarnation is something other than the one that facilitates past lives. Is that more clear?
 
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Tyger

Paranormal Adept
The Premise behind the Concept of Past Lives & Reincarnation

The logical reasoning for saying that past lives can be ruled out is based on the premise contained in the subject itself. Specifically, the phrase "past lives" implicitly states that a living subject (person) in the present is the same person as some deceased person in the past. To reinforce this further, reincarnation believers typically use the same or similar terminology e.g. "past lives, The Boy Who Lived Before, past life regression ... etc." all of which suggest that the subject in the now ( let's call him Bob ) is the same person as some deceased person in the past ( let's call her Alice ). This can be stated as a purely logical expression using equal to ( = ) and not equal to ( ≠ ) symbols. So assuming that reincarnation, past lives and the like as defined above is true then it follows that: living Bob = dead Alice.

If we have agreement on the above, then we can proceed to the next step. If we do not have agreement on the above then the only remaining choice is that living Bob ≠ dead Alice, in which case living Bob's life ≠ dead Alice's life, which means that Bob's assumption that his memories about dead Alice represent a "past life" is false. Furthermore, if you disagree with the premise as defined, then we're no longer talking about "past lives" and therefore whatever evidence is presented in support of it is actually evidence for another topic altogether.
Honestly, Ufology, I think my alzheimer's is kicking in.

The underlined sentence seems to be the crux of your premise - and my answer is 'yes and no'. I'm not sure saying 'past lives' implicitly states anything - and I definitely don't think I have the complete story on the theory/concept as a variety of people understand it.

What you are saying (others say) is a very breezy way of referencing a very profound idea, and that's okay imo for the sake of breezy conversation. Clearly the West, that has not had this concept except in it's esoteric streams, will not have a sophisticated version of the idea. How the idea has percolated out into the popular imagination assumes people are not rigorous with the idea because they are not hearing about it couched within a coherent epistemolgy.

It's possible some people do interpret reincarnation exactly as you say - Bob=Alice. I would say that such an equation is questionable and simplistic.

The concept is fairly breathtaking in it's scope and implications - and fascinating in it's details found world-wide. Just because a 'whole bunch of people' - the popular imagination fomented by National Enquirer stories - might have one particularly superficial application of the idea does not make the whole of it bogus. In fact there are streams of this idea that believe we can regress back to the animal state - a fascinating dog-leg to the theory, more understandable when one considers that one finds such an idea flourish where there is a rigid social/economic system.
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
In the premise above, I'm not saying that I think things actually are one way or another. I'm saying that there are several versions of reincarnation, and the premise we're working with in this discussion assumes that deceased people are sometimes reborn in a manner which justifies the belief that they are actually someone who lived in the past, hence we can say that they lived a "past life" or are a "Boy Who Lived Before" ( the title of this thread ). As a logical consequence this model requires equivalence of personhood in order to claim that reincarnation is true. This equivalence can be expressed as: living person A = deceased person B, or more simply living Bob = Dead Alice.


I don't see a logical consequence - it's only logical if you are keeping to narrow limits - it seems. You must define 'personhood', I think. I think what's happening is I'm not sure what the baseline is that you are trying to establish.

we need to establish whether or not we are in agreement on the basic premise as outlined above. If yes, then we can have a closer look at the concept of how we define personhood. If not, then the premise you have for reincarnation is something other than the one that facilitates past lives. Is that more clear?
I think we can have that conversation regardless - but I'm not a stand-in for anyone else you've had this debate with. I approach the subject in my own way - definitely on a large canvas, historically, culturally, socially - as well as 'spiritually'.
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
*cough* I need to draw your attention to the fact that I am a 'Paranormal Adept' (no less) - evidence what it says below my avatar. *clears throat* Just pointing this out so you are forewarned as we proceed in this debate. *cough*
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
I don't see a logical consequence - it's only logical if you are keeping to narrow limits - it seems. You must define 'personhood', I think. I think what's happening is I'm not sure what the baseline is that you are trying to establish.
It doesn't matter if the parameters are "narrow" so long as they are accurate. The subject we are discussing is "past lives" as indicated in this post: The Boy Who Lived Before - Documentary about a childs memories of another life | The Paracast Community Forums.

I've outlined the common belief of what the phrase "past life" means in the context of this discussion using the example of the this thread's topic, "The Boy Who Lived Before" in which the idea is proposed in this video that through the process of reincarnation, the son of someone in the past named Shane Robertson has become a small boy in the present named Cameron, hence Cameron is the boy who lived before. If it is true that Cameron actually is the boy who lived before, then Cameron = the boy who lived before, and this case of reincarnation is true. What part about this are you still having a hard time with?
 

Tyger

Paranormal Adept
:)
I've outlined the common belief of what the phrase "past life" means in the context of this discussion using the example of the this thread's topic, "The Boy Who Lived Before" in which the idea is proposed in this video that through the process of reincarnation, the son of someone in the past named Shane Robertson has become a small boy in the present named Cameron, hence Cameron is the boy who lived before. If it is true that Cameron actually is the boy who lived before, then Cameron = the boy who lived before, and this case of reincarnation is true. What part about this are you still having a hard time with?
GOT IT!


LINK:

I just don't think it's that clear-cut. I don't think it's that simple. Establishing the 'truth' of a particular reincarnation is not so simple imo. Even for the person who has the memories.

There is much about this story that suggests that the theory of reincarnation applies - it's the closest theory we have to cover the phenomenon being observed - but I don't think anyone is saying that is the sole explanation, because there are what appear to be intriguing anomalies in the story. Overall it's a fascinating case study - as well as the other child documented who appears to be the reincarnation of his grandfather.

I found myself being deeply moved by Cameron's emotional experience in the house. Anyone who has had a 'memory' of a place knows how deeply sad it can be when you actually visit said location, even if the memory is essentially one of love and happiness.

A little (garbled) history but interesting. We are so far removed from philosophy in our secular world that we fail to understand how we think - or permit ourselves to think - has everything to do with what we judge to be obscure and quaint doctrinal issues from way-back-when. But the declaration that the human being is made up of only body and soul (with spirit and soul as terms being used interchangeably) stems from a Church Council (of Constantinople) - the 8th Council 869-870. It was in this Council that the Platonic 'error' - found with the Gnostics and Manichaeans and Bogomils, and in the teachings of Apollinaris of Laodicea - was 'rooted out'. :rolleyes: In splicing and dicing and conflating the concepts of soul and spirit, the concept of reincarnation was effectively abandoned (because it is in the concept of the spirit that reincarnation is possible, not the soul - and may be related to your 'personhood'). Western thought proceeded with the idea of a body and soul and so one life - and not a body endowed with soul (comprised of 4 bodies) connected to a unique spiritual identity (also comprised of additional bodies). This 'glass ceiling' was in many respects responsible for the vitality of the Western impulse - as well as our materialistic/mechanistic view of the world - making modern science possible. It's a fascinating story.

The idea of reincarnation is ancient - and has everything to do with ancestor worship. It's also why the disciples in the New Testament argue freely about 'who' Jesus is - is he Solomon? is he Elijah? etc.

If you root around in Catholicism you will find that the term 'soul and spirit' is viewed as a locution and not the designation of two principles ( an idea inherited pretty much by Protestantism - though it was a persistent little thing and kept popping up, like with the Cathars in southern France - which started the Inquisition, in fact, and the beginnings of the police state - the destruction of the Cathars is a disturbing echo from the past in our current times). Upon such an apparent minor triviality, whole universes have been excluded from consideration in Western thought. Had this glass ceiling not been established in 869-870 you and I might be having a very different kind of discussion regarding what is happening to Cameron.

Why not jump in with your thoughts on reincarnation, Ufology? You seem to be circling the airport on this topic.
 
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USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
Great! Cute video too. You're also right that the whole picture isn't that clear cut or simple, and we'll move on to include the concept of spirits and souls and so on as we progress. But for now we need to be clear on the foundation, otherwise we'll end up leaping to unfounded conclusions later on. So moving on to the next step.

Because we agree that if Cameron actually is the boy who lived before, then Cameron = the boy who lived before, and Cameron's case of reincarnation is true, we now have a set of conditions that can be used not only for Cameron's story, but for any other story with the same conditions. Therefore specific names of people aren't important to the concept itself. It is just as legitimate to say, "If it is true that a person living now is another person who lived before then we can say that the person living now had a "past life" and the kind of reincarnation we're discussing here is true". Are we still in agreement?
 
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Tyger

Paranormal Adept
Great! Cute video too. You're also right that the whole picture isn't that clear cut or simple, and we'll move on to include the concept of spirits and souls and so on as we progress. But for now we need to be clear on the foundation, otherwise we'll end up leaping to unfounded conclusions later on. So moving on to the next step.
Really? Why so coy? Why do you know 'where we're going' and I don't? I am fine with a lively back-and-forth - but not a scripted debate with only one person with the story-book. :)

Because we agree that if Cameron actually is the boy who lived before, then Cameron = the boy who lived before, and Cameron's case of reincarnation is true, we now have a set of conditions that can be used not only for Cameron's story, but for any other story with the same conditions.
Therefore specific names of people aren't important to the concept itself. It is just as legitimate to say, "If it is true that a person living now is another person who lived before then we can say that the person living now had a "past life" and the kind of reincarnation we're discussing here is true". Are we still in agreement?
I dunno - are we? I have no absolute idea of what is going forward with Cameron. I think I've stated that. How about we just discuss the idea of repeated earthly lives?

Ufology, why not just jump in and state what your views are on reincarnation? This piecemeal approach I'm not sure will work. You must have a view of the nature of the universe - a philosophy - that guides you in how you view this idea of reincarnation - why not state it forthrightly? In the end, that is where the debate lies.

I don't really know what the 'set of conditions' are that you are referencing - can you be more explicit about what the 'set of conditions' are - from the video - that you've garnered from watching? I am moved by Cameron's story and am persuaded from what I see that he is having an authentic experience. As the researcher mentions, such 'memories' usually recede by the age of 6 and 7. It is also rare for such a young child to be able to articulate their 'memories', which suggests certain things - but more information would need to be known, that is not covered by the video.

You are so insistent that I agree with your posits that I am becoming wary, as though you are setting me up with a 'logic-rabbit-hole'. :p
 
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USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
Really? Why so coy? Why do you know 'where we're going' and I don't? I am fine with a lively back-and-forth - but not a scripted debate with only one person with the story-book. :).
I'm not being coy. I'm answering the questions you asked here by explaining the logic ( as requested ) with the context ( as requested ). This is also not "scripted".
You are so insistent that I agree with your posits that I am becoming wary, as though you are setting me up with a 'logic-rabbitt-hole'.
There is no insistence that you agree to anything. You have every opportunity at each point along the way to question and explain where the logic fails. The only reason I need to know whether or not you agree is because in the case of disagreement there is some problem that needs to be either clarified or updated. If that isn't done, then the resulting conclusion will be based on faulty reasoning. I presume we both would like to avoid that because faulty reasoning isn't likely to get us any closer to the truth. As for the "rabbit hole" analogy, logic and critical analysis is what leads you out of it, not into it.
 
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Tyger

Paranormal Adept
I think we are at a standstill.

You are identifying a 'set of conditions' - what are those?

Whether Cameron is a reincarnation or not is not obvious from the evidence in the video imo - though reincarnational theory most definitely is the closest to apply, there are anomalies in the case that make one question what is taking place outside of that explanation. It is definitely an interesting case story. Can't get anymore clear than that.

I've been very forthcoming about the context I use to look at this topic. I am interested in your philosophical context. It is our philosophy [our premises] that permits us - logically - to think in various ways, or not. We are going to bump heads if the philosophical context is not clear - specifically the nature of the human being. In the end this is the level at which we are debating. If you do not see the spiritual universe as the other half of existence, you will be attempting to apply physical laws to a universe that does not behave according to physical laws. [The problem associated with studying the 'paranormal' and the essential misinformation, therefore, being generated regarding the 'paranormal'.]
 

TalkingMeatSuit

Paranormal Maven
It's also important to realize that not only could it be something else entirely, it has to be something else entirely. Past lives can be completely ruled out by sheer logic. Believers tend to shrug this off as irrelevant, but it's not. It's not like trying to prove that the feelings we have for our loved ones are real. It's a different kind of problem altogether that can be worked out logically and objectively.
It IS like trying to prove that the feelings we have for another person are real. They are intangible, escaping the calipers and beakers we seek to quantify everything with. That is how they are similar. Making a blanket statement to support your opinion that "past lives can be completely ruled out by sheer logic" is like me saying "I can scientifically prove that orange is better than blue" - yeah, I could write you a few walls of text and justifications, but it would be just that. Just because you don't understand something doesn't mean it's not possible. ET's are allegedly visiting our planet, but our scientists say that it's not possible to travel the distances proposed.

Are out of body experiences all lies and made up stories? And NDE's? Are people like Dr Michael Newton just complete frauds? (psychologist who shut down his practice after stumbling onto past lives during a hypnotherapy session, then spent 30 years on it before writing a couple books on his findings) Was the retirement pay for being a doctor so bad that he had to make up enough fake case stories to fill a few books? It is possible I suppose, look at all the shit Whitley Strieber farts out of his lie-hole. Books are a bad example though - you can find a plethora of books to support either side of the argument. It's all just a matter of opinion in the end and which set of books you accept as symptoms of proof.

The logical reasoning for saying that past lives can be ruled out is based on the premise contained in the subject itself. Specifically, the phrase "past lives" implicitly states that a living subject ( person ) in the present is the same person as some deceased person in the past. To reinforce this further, reincarnation believers typically use the same or similar terminology e.g. "past lives, The Boy Who Lived Before, past life regression ... etc." all of which suggest that the subject in the now ( let's call him Bob ) is the same person as some deceased person in the past ( let's call her Alice ). This can be stated as a purely logical expression using equal to ( = ) and not equal to ( ? ) symbols. So assuming that reincarnation, past lives and the like as defined above is true then it follows that...
If you are of the opinion that we are nothing more than our physical parts, then yes, I can see why it would sound silly to think that Alice would be Bob. The molecules that comprised Alice's body are rotting in the ground and being used by other living organisms now. The crux is whether or not you believe that we are a consciousness occupying a body or we are just a body and nothing else. If the latter is the case, we're pretty much at a standstill here and there's no point to continue.

Rather than re-write the sentiment, I'll paste what I said on this topic elsewhere: "If you lose a limb, your main body is still "you". You can lose or replace just about any part of the body and still live, still be "you". Heart, kidneys, limbs, even portions of your brain can get blown out and you'll still be "alive". So what physical piece of your body is "you"? I don't think you can live without a brain stem, so does that mean that you are simply a brain stem with a big mostly-water meatbag of organs and skin attached to it? Probably not. Rather, I ask myself, who/what is the thing that is observing all this from behind my eyeballs? What is the voice talking in my head when I read a book? Who is it that is listening to that voice?"

Why do most people accept the fact that a consciousness (your consciousness) can inhabit a body once, but doing so multiple times is impossible? I think it makes perfect sense that we are generally blocked from seeing everything from our past lives. What if you were aware that 4 lives ago the consciousness that is now your brother killed you in an argument? Think of all the beef you generate just 1 time around. Who knows if it's true, but we're all just supposedly actors on a stage, filling different roles to learn different lessons. Karma isn't a penal code - it's the way an individual gets another chance to do the correct thing. I guess by having shittiness, you get an appreciation for awesomeness. Like the disclaimer said though, who knows if it's true.

This line of thought combined with my own experiences have formed my opinions on the matter. I could be wrong. You could be wrong too. Guess we'll know when we get there :) Hopefully "there" will have a nice little pub we can get a pint or two at to discuss.

Have you ever tried a few regressions with a good practitioner? I used to be a straight up staunch Dawkins-esque atheist. Then I had some weird experiences and started exploring, experimenting - trying the things I was hearing about. When I do, I suspend my disbelief temporarily (there's all the time in the world afterwards to critique it, no need to be scared), follow the instructions with corresponding intention, surrender, and go with the flow. If it's crap, you can see it's crap afterwards. I suggest ya try it before ya knock it. To me you sound like someone saying how Arizona is a terrible place to visit that has never been there :) Get out of your over-thinking over-analyzing brain a little - you're too smart for your own good sometimes mate :)
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
It IS like trying to prove that the feelings we have for another person are real.
We're not going to make any progress with an IS versus "isn't" versus IS versus "isn't " loop. What needs to be considered is why we should believe it's one way or another and then compare the reasons to see which makes the most sense based on the evidence and critical analysis.
They are intangible, escaping the calipers and beakers we seek to quantify everything with. That is how they are similar. Making a blanket statement to support your opinion that "past lives can be completely ruled out by sheer logic" is like me saying "I can scientifically prove that orange is better than blue" - yeah, I could write you a few walls of text and justifications, but it would be just that. Just because you don't understand something doesn't mean it's not possible. ET's are allegedly visiting our planet, but our scientists say that it's not possible to travel the distances proposed.
The assumptions you are making to justify the statement above are based entirely on subjective experience. To use your analogy with color in it's proper perspective, we're not just looking at one color, but many colors that form an image, and our task is to determine what that image represents, not whether it's better or worse than what we want it to represent. We're also not denying that there are phenomena that have led people to draw the conclusion that someone has lived a past life. Rather we're asking whether or not that conclusion is supported by sufficient evidence and critical analysis rather than opinion and belief.
Are out of body experiences all lies and made up stories? And NDE's? Are people like Dr Michael Newton just complete frauds? (psychologist who shut down his practice after stumbling onto past lives during a hypnotherapy session, then spent 30 years on it before writing a couple books on his findings) Was the retirement pay for being a doctor so bad that he had to make up enough fake case stories to fill a few books? It is possible I suppose, look at all the shit Whitley Strieber farts out of his lie-hole. Books are a bad example though - you can find a plethora of books to support either side of the argument. It's all just a matter of opinion in the end and which set of books you accept as symptoms of proof.
The same type of analysis can be applied to OOBEs and NDEs in order to arrive at a more accurate view of what the case is. This is not opinion. Opinions are unfounded beliefs. Offhanded dismissals are opinions. Critical analysis based on evidence and logical reasoning is not mere opinion, and as such carries weight when we're trying to determine the truth of a given situation ( assuming that is what we're interested in ).
If you are of the opinion that we are nothing more than our physical parts, then yes, I can see why it would sound silly to think that Alice would be Bob. The molecules that comprised Alice's body are rotting in the ground and being used by other living organisms now. The crux is whether or not you believe that we are a consciousness occupying a body or we are just a body and nothing else. If the latter is the case, we're pretty much at a standstill here and there's no point to continue.
Again you are using the word "opinion" when it doesn't apply. There is plenty of evidence to show that we are at least partly material. There is also evidence of other non-material facets that make us who we are. Unless we are going to arbitrarily dismiss some of the evidence to suit our personal preferences, it all needs to be fairly considered. Would you not agree?
Rather than re-write the sentiment, I'll paste what I said on this topic elsewhere: "If you lose a limb, your main body is still "you". You can lose or replace just about any part of the body and still live, still be "you". Heart, kidneys, limbs, even portions of your brain can get blown out and you'll still be "alive". So what physical piece of your body is "you"? I don't think you can live without a brain stem, so does that mean that you are simply a brain stem with a big mostly-water meatbag of organs and skin attached to it? Probably not. Rather, I ask myself, who/what is the thing that is observing all this from behind my eyeballs? What is the voice talking in my head when I read a book? Who is it that is listening to that voice?"
Now you are getting into specifics and that is a good thing. You make the assumption above that if we lose parts of our bodies that we remain the same people. This is a common and misleading assumption for two reasons. The first is because it arbitrarily dismisses our physical selves as an important part of our identity. Evidence shows us that our physical selves are very important, not only for how we are identified by others, but to our own sense of personal identity. In other words, our fingerprints, hair color, eye color, height, skin color, DNA, and the number of body parts that remain intact, are all important in defining our identity as individuals, plus they are intimately connected with our non-material selves as well. How? Our physical selves have a significant impact on our psychological condition and therefore affects our personality, behavior and abilities, sometimes in profound ways.

Consider something as deceptively simple as the differences between people of different gender and age. The physical differences include biochemistry such as hormones and differences in brain structure that have very real measurable impacts not only on what we choose to think, but how we think. If you were to suddenly change genders and age overnight, not only would you lose your entire physical identity, you would also have a different way of reacting and dealing with it. The only thing that would be left to tie you to your old self would be a set of memories. But are memories alone sufficient to claim you are actually still the same person? This brings us to the second reason, the concept of equivalency.

The concept of past lives is hinged on the idea that a person living in the now is the same person as one who lived before ( e.g. Cameron is the Boy Who Lived Before ) or any number of other examples. Making such claims implicitly implies equivalency of persons in order to be true. In other words, if we assume we're not the same person as someone who lived before, then we're also assuming we had no past life. I can think of no exception to this logic. If you can, then by all means, post it.

Proceeding from the above, and returning to your illustration of losing various body parts, if a leg is lost, we have lost a physical, measurable part of what makes us who and what we are. It affects how we are identified, how we relate to ourselves, and how we feel about ourselves as people. It affects us not only physically, but also psychologically. Having two functioning legs matters to us ( or at least most people ) and is important to our sense of completeness as individuals. If we take away more of our bodies then we lose even more of who and what we are, and if we take away it all, and there is nothing left, there is every reason to believe that everything that once defined us as a person also no longer exists.

We can also take this illustration a step further. At the point where there is nothing material left of us, all we are left with in this picture are other people, some of whom believe that some ethereal remainder of you has drifted off into some form of unsubstantiated afterlife. In the case of "past lives" the only evidence we've seen of that ethereal remainder is a disjointed collection of memories in other people. But even assuming those disjointed memories were somehow transferred directly from you to another person at the point of your death, they are hardly sufficient enough to qualify as the equivalent of you. At best it only represents a very small part of who you once were.
Why do most people accept the fact that a consciousness (your consciousness) can inhabit a body once, but doing so multiple times is impossible?
There may be several reasons for other people's beliefs. But what I'm doing here is explaining the one that makes the most sense given the evidence and which stands up under critical analysis. I don't think most people, believers or non-believers, normally go to these lengths to determine the truth. They simply have unsubstantiated beliefs and opinions.
I think it makes perfect sense that we are generally blocked from seeing everything from our past lives. What if you were aware that 4 lives ago the consciousness that is now your brother killed you in an argument? Think of all the beef you generate just 1 time around. Who knows if it's true, but we're all just supposedly actors on a stage, filling different roles to learn different lessons. Karma isn't a penal code - it's the way an individual gets another chance to do the correct thing. I guess by having shittiness, you get an appreciation for awesomeness. Like the disclaimer said though, who knows if it's true.

This line of thought combined with my own experiences have formed my opinions on the matter. I could be wrong. You could be wrong too. Guess we'll know when we get there :) Hopefully "there" will have a nice little pub we can get a pint or two at to discuss.
I wouldn't say you're wrong so much as you could benefit by updating your analysis. To be more clear, neither of us are disputing the existence of phenomena and experiences that give rise to the belief in past lives. It's the interpretation of that evidence that is the point of contention. The evidence for past lives consists primarily of memories ( usually unverified ) that are assumed to be true. As explained above, this is not sufficient to claim equivalency of personhood. To illustrate further, let's turn your example of lost of limbs around and instead use the actual nature of the evidence ( memory ). Given the person you are now, would the addition of a few unexplained memories suddenly make you into someone else? Of course not. Yet this is exactly what saying things like, "I was so and so in a past life because I remember this or that" says, and it's an enormous unfounded leap in logic.

To impress this even further, throughout our lives uncounted memories come and go without affecting our identities as persons. Only in the case of massive changes such as total amnesia or Alzheimer's disease does memory change our self-identity to any appreciable degree. So even if by some process that is not understood we are able to acquire a few disjointed memories from some deceased person, that in no way turns us suddenly into that person. Virtually all the evidence suggests that you would simply remain who you are now with some new and unexplained memories.
Have you ever tried a few regressions with a good practitioner? I used to be a straight up staunch Dawkins-esque atheist. Then I had some weird experiences and started exploring, experimenting - trying the things I was hearing about. When I do, I suspend my disbelief temporarily (there's all the time in the world afterwards to critique it, no need to be scared), follow the instructions with corresponding intention, surrender, and go with the flow. If it's crap, you can see it's crap afterwards. I suggest ya try it before ya knock it. To me you sound like someone saying how Arizona is a terrible place to visit that has never been there :) Get out of your over-thinking over-analyzing brain a little - you're too smart for your own good sometimes mate :)
Have I ever tried a few regressions with a good practitioner? No. But even if I were to do that and have some incredible experience where I was able to recall some verifiable information about the life of a deceased person, it wouldn't justify saying I was actually that deceased person in a past life. It would only justify saying that through some unexplained process I was able to obtain information related to some deceased person. I would still be the same unique individual I am now who has never lived before and once I am gone will never live again. And so are you my friend. Be proud of it. Own it, and make something out of it. The sooner you do this and leave behind this "past life" nonsense, the closer you'll be to figuring out the real truth behind the phenomena.
 
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Tyger

Paranormal Adept
The concept of past lives is hinged on the idea that a person living in the now is the same person as one who lived before ( e.g. Cameron is the Boy Who Lived Before ) or any number of other examples.
No, the idea of reincarnation does not hinge on the idea that one person is the same person as one who lived before. Your understanding of the concept is perhaps a bit simple - it's a far more complex theory. You are taking how you have come to understand the idea of reincarnation - via your particular reading perhaps, and your particular understanding as a result - as the definitive statement of reincarnation. Or that's what it appears.

In fact, in no rendering of the idea of reincarnation have I ever heard it suggested that "a person living in the now is the same person as one who lived before." Not at all - and for many, even all, of the reasons you state.

I now see what you are doing - you have a very particular mind-set about what the concept of reincarnation is - and you likely have a very well-reasoned argument refuting that idea. Have I got it right? If so, what you fail to understand is that the concept of reincarnation varies, depending on depth of study and experience, as well as culture and society.

Making such claims implicitly implies equivalency of persons in order to be true. In other words, if we assume we're not the same person as someone who lived before, then we're also assuming we had no past life. I can think of no exception to this logic. If you can, then by all means, post it.
Reincarnational theory does not make the claim you are supposing it does. Reincarnational theory does not imply "equivalency of persons" - and never has as far as I am aware. Also, this "equivalency of persons" is not necessary for repeated earthly lives to be true. In fact, were such actually true, reincarnation as an idea would make no sense - and I can see why - if this is what you believe - you think as you do.

People who have previous life memories as adults are in the process of a profound integration on a spiritual level - or that is one way of putting it. But it has nothing to do with the current Soul [your 'personhood'] - it has everything to do with the Spirit.
 
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Burnt State

Paranormal Adept
What is the nature of this profound integration on a spiritual level and how is this connected to the lived experiences of unique identities? I'm curious about your line of thinking here. What's the model you are proposing, Tyger?
 

mike

Paranormal Adept
I have an alternative explanation

If time travel is possible and the physics say it is, then everything we do think and feel is written indelibly on the fabric of the universe.
In this instance we can get by with the abstract, we dont need to posit an actual time machine with passengers.
If so then everything we do is written into what some cultures describe as the akoshic record

The Akashic Records & How To Read Them - Ernesto Ortiz

Now there is a lot of mystic mumbo jumbo tied into these descriptions, but from a nuts and bolts perspective, if every moment of "now" is accessable via a 4th dimensional conduit or wormhole, then space time can be seen (from a topographical pov) as a single unit.

From "above" the universe can be seen as a set of co-ordinates on two axis. Distance and Duration.

We experience it one moment of now at a time, one page after another, But if it is in the larger picture a book, not a single fleeting page, then its possible these accounts of reincarnation are simple people who are able to tap into pages other than the one we call the moment of now.

Another idea ive posited here before is that post biological sentience collects experience sets, adds them to its hive mind collective in order to enrich it and allow its members to share data/experiences.
Perhaps they are tapping into this hive mind.

All of these concepts are within our own grasp including mind uploading, artificial telepathy and time travel in theory.

Reincarnation though requires a mechanism i myself cant give much credence to

I prefer a nuts and bolts type mechanism over a supernatural one myself
 

USI Calgary

J. Randall Murphy
Staff member
No, the idea of reincarnation does not hinge on the idea that one person is the same person as one who lived before. Your understanding of the concept is perhaps a bit simple - it's a far more complex theory. You are taking how you have come to understand the idea of reincarnation - via your particular reading perhaps, and your particular understanding as a result - as the definitive statement of reincarnation. Or that's what it appears.
I said, "The concept of past lives ..." not, "the idea of reincarnation", and when I have used the word "reincarnation" in this discussion, I've used it for explanatory purposes with respect to the specific kind of claim this thread introduced, which is that it's possible for a person living in the now to be the same person as one who lived before, hence "The Boy Who Lived Before". I've even named the people used in the video example to make it more clear. For this particular discussion there's no need to make it any more complex than that. If you'd rather discuss all the various other complex historical or personal versions of reincarnation, then I suggest that we reframe the question and switch over to this thread: https://www.theparacast.com/forum/threads/reincarnation-past-life-evidence-part-1.4225/
 
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