Come again~?

.

IT’S NOT AS IF

I mentioned it first. But: reincarnation returns.

UPFRONT DISCLAIMER (1)

  • I do not believe in reincarnation
  • I do not disbelieve in reincarnation
  • I just don’t know
  • But I do tend more towards belief than not

UPFRONT DISCLAIMER (2)

  • I am an agnostic
  • I am an atheist as well
  • and am anti organised religions (which exist to milk the vulnerable)

UPFRONT DISCLAIMER (3)

  • to me nothing is impossible (as a concept)
  • but everything can be graded in various degrees of ‘probable’

UPFRONT DISCLAIMER (4)

Sometimes I feel safer with the Socratic method. No apologies offered or accepted. Thus:

Disregarding much New Age and Spiritualist rubbish—is it not possible that the physical selves we see at any instant are simply three dimensional slices of four dimensional objects ( … obviously)?

RIGHT HERE

You may take a break. My point is made; but we can always gild the lily a little a bit, like this—

GIVEN

that our minds can achieve little (if anything) in this physical world without a physical body to apply the necessary forces when required—can we not assume that our physical body is nothing more than a tool that our mind uses to achieve its ends?

Everything physical is subject to the laws of the physical world which means erosion, wear, and tear. So if (when) the vehicle wears out we simply put it down and take up a new one? This one question begs myriads more—beginning with the obvious ‘why’?

  • Why,
  • for what purposes,
  • to what ends?

What’s the point—why ask me: I don’t know.

All I can offer is theory, conjecture, and a warning to be wary of anyone who can answer that question.

THE OBVIOUS

facile answer here is of course good old God. We are here to serve good ol’ God’s purposes. And having got that out of the way, let’s get on with the post …

TO NOT DIGRESS

at primary school we were once asked “What is the purpose of a flower?” Most of the kids said the same (effectively a consensus) “To make the world beautiful”. When the teacher got to me I think I disappointed him because I passed—I didn’t have an answer. To me a flower was simply a flower, a fact of life as much as rocks and that was that. His answer when it came, grandly delivered fell quite flat: “To make another flower!”.

SO …

if I were to accept the concept of reincarnation it would be simply as another fact of existence; one for which I couldn’t post a reason. I wouldn’t attribute grandiose purposes to it, or unverifiable evolutionary paths such as from rock to seaweed to flower to worm to ant to bug to serpent to bird to dog to low-caste human to high-caste human to saint to angel to ‘reunion with the godhead’ etc etc.

I COULD ACCEPT REINCARNATION

as a fact on the basis of our disposable body as a vehicle/tool combo. I’m with Voltaire in that it would be no more remarkable to be born twice than once.

WHAT I WOULD FIND MOST REMARKABLE

would be if there were any carry-over from one incarnation to the next. Unless the mind can or does actually affect the body? But that’s for another post …

.

KISMET

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9 Comments

  1. thespearking379

     /  July 4, 2013

    Come again indeed! 🙂 If I may ask a question, what would it take for you to believe in reincarnation then?

    Reply
  2. Argus

     /  July 4, 2013

    Definite knowledge rather than feelings. (Dammit, I could post about this …)

    Why are some people vastly gifted from birth in complex fields? Why can some memorise vast tracts? Why can some do mentally in an instant mathematical problems that would take a computer a fair time?

    All we have to go on is either our own experiences or someone else’s say-so. You might be surprised at how many highly regarded universities are now quietly well into studying the topic; and some of their conclusions.

    Again, definite knowledge (ideally of my own). If not my own (experiences, rather than ‘dreams’) then well-researched with analyses by accredited experts (scientists rather than gurus).

    And thanks for one of the best questions I’ve ever been asked.

    Reply
  3. thespearking379

     /  July 5, 2013

    If reincarnation is predominantly memory based, then how does it differ from your memory of where you was yesterday. What I mean is how do you prove that you were anywhere yesterday without your memory of it?
    Like you I don’t disbelieve, I know I have memories of things that don’t necessarily relate to this life, and I’ve been places in the world that felt incredibly familiar, also on the odd occasion knew where I was going without having been there before. I’ve often asked myself if this is my evidence for reincarnation. It begs the question of what kind of empirical evidence you would need to attain proof of such? And why would an accredited expert know any more than someone who claimed to have such memories?
    Personally I would place my money on the guru than the scientist, purely for the reason that the scientist does not place any kind of credibility on memory, or emotive connection.
    How do you know you were where you were yesterday? Because you are pretty damn sure, right… although you can’t prove it 100%, and nor could any accredited scientist. I think it’s down to one’s perception of absolutes, and truisms.

    True enough though, I would love to see some empirical evidence for reincarnation, if only for the novelty of the experience.

    Reply
  4. Is it a memory of a past life, a form of experience-based knowledge or is it creative, provocative imagination? If it brings positivity into your life in some way, then does it matter? Or does it matter because you wouldn’t be able to stand knowing that the positivity you experience is grounded in fiction? Why *must* it be provable fact? The purpose of provable facts is to make a judgment call that you can later defend. Why do we feel so compelled to pass judgments? Really, that’s why it matters here, because we want to be able to render judgment. Then we have to question why we are so compelled to render judgment. And the Q&A leads right back to the tension between memory/knowledge vs. imagination.

    Thanks for this great read. I’m enjoying you writings.

    Reply
  5. Argus

     /  July 5, 2013

    For Spearking:
    I have no idea if or that reincarnation is memory based. If it is I see no physical mechanism; it would be like building a computer of your own from scratch, programming it to do things—then demolishing it completely, grinding all the pieces to dust, then melting them to an amorphous goop, then burning that good to atoms … Then building a new computer from scratch and finding it can run all the tailor-made ‘one-off’ programmes that you created for your now atomised old computer. If the new one could ‘remember’ the programming of the old, I do not see how—?

    Unless of course the human mind does exist out there in lala land somewhere, and the totally new body is simply a tool that that mind uses. Brrr ..,.

    As for ‘knowing’ things I shouldn’t, I’m with you. I’ll explain this in another post soon (it may get me tossed out of the Rationalist Club but I can live with that).

    Empirical evidence? Quite simply if I went somewhere I’d never been and knew what was around the next corner before I got there. If I knew that “go into that old abandoned house you’ve never seen before and dig under the third floorboard on the left from the fireplace and recover the tin buried there 200 years ago wherein lurks the collection of pennies you concealed 200 years ago as a child and forgot about—” . That would be a toughie to gainsay (many would try). If not proof of reincarnation it would certainly indicate the presence of some paranormal means of transmission of information, for sure.

    Guru and gullible both begin with the same letter; science and sceptic likewise. Both are fashion and neither have the complete answers; I continue to search and listen to all.

    Ian Stevenson wrote an excellent book (eighties, I think) that somewhere in my too many moving-houses I lost. Should replace it but Spouse gets twitchy when I buy books, ‘cos when my mood swings I toss them out to make room for more. Get ahold of “ Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation” (Amazon, library, whatever) if you want an excellent primer. It’s even now the cutting edge where science meets ‘superstition’ and they begin to blend.

    Reply
    • thespearking379

       /  July 5, 2013

      Thanks for the book suggestion, and the pithy response. I applaud your open-mindedness. I personally like to think about these things as I find it extremely creative, and as we all know there are no innovations without a bit of creative imagining first. Einstein is a fine point in question, his theory of relativity came to him in a dream apparently.

      Reply
  6. Argus

     /  July 5, 2013

    For Miss (?) Benebell:

    This is where I’m at, your opening question. My reply above about the mechanism applies here, too.
    As for positivity—why worry, be happeeee … A cup of coffee enhances my mood, I dare say a goodly snort of the Ice Lady might do the same … but is it good, genuinely beneficial? As a child I believed in fairy tales and the Mopsy Bunnies; good escapist colour to a child’s world, but we survive better if we adapt to Reality.

    Your next point could well be: so, what is Reality? What indeed …

    There’s no ‘must’ or compulsion here, I neither take nor hold prisoners—but for years I was taken and held by people who milk the gullible. I broke out and have never since trusted anyone who “knows”. I suspect a hand reaching towards my wallet in every case no matter how ‘holy’ or venerated the guru.

    I don’t make provable statements that I feel the need to defend. What I offer is my opinion, and anyone may accept it or savage it as they wish. If I do defend it is to needle out further facts or opinions (so be careful, I sometimes play Devil’s Advocate)(sue me) 🙂

    Judgement is survival. You need it. Anyone telling you “Judge not” is reaching for your ‘control’ button. When they add “lest ye be judged” back slowly away with a sickly grin until you can see that way clear to run like a rabbit—and do so.

    No?

    And thank you for the thank you, very much appreciated.

    Reply
  7. Well, for what it’s worth I stumbled across your blog because I am currently struggling to answer the same exact questions. The problem is I am not interested in philosophizing. Yet how do you even begin to approach these questions without philosophizing? For me right now, there’s the rub.

    Reply
  8. Argus

     /  July 5, 2013

    I don’t think it can be done. Honest people philosophise, the deluded lay down the law; the unscrupulous lay down the law for prophet.

    Pun entirely intentional …

    Reply

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