Do you believe in reincarnation? I do, and it is not like the Shirley McClain or various other Hollywood celebrities I have read about versions of reincarnation, who always seem to believe in some flashy, glamorous, trendy type of reincarnation….The type of person who always think that they were Cleopatra or Queen Elizabeth or Leonardo Davinci or Alexander the Great or some other equally famous or notorious person in their own personal past lives….
Just for the sake of argument, if reincarnation does exist, we are statistically more likely to have been one of the slaves who built the pyramids, or one of the foot soldiers who slogged through the mud and dust of long forgotten battles, than some glamorous leaders of the time, simply because there were so many MORE regular people than famous people that have lived and died before us…I think reincarnation gets a bad knock because everybody can’t have been somebody rich, famous or powerful in their past lives…
It just doesn’t make sense to think like that, the odds are against it, we can’t all have been rich and famous in our past lives…….At the same time, where DO our souls go when we die? I am by nature a spiritual, not a religious person, but I 100% respect those who are members of any organized religion….
I am sure it is a comfort for the completely invested religious true believers who think there are assigned places in heaven or hell for the good and the wicked, and maybe they are right…..Maybe it IS true for them, the true believers, that if they adhere to the tenets and dogma of their particular religion they will be rewarded or punished as the religious beliefs of their particular faith articulate and promulgate… Maybe in fact the afterlife really IS just that, the sum of all our earthly beliefs, whatever we truly believe it is in THIS life, good or bad….
So that if you are say for example a Catholic, then you will be judged by St. Peter at the entrance to the pearly gates and assigned your place in the after world according to how you have lived your life, what sins you have committed or not, and what kind of person you actually were when you were still alive…
But I am definitely a spiritual person, and find it impossible to believe that our souls, or consciousness just disappears forever when we die, or cease our existence on this planet..Personally I think we are all collections of energy, a unified force, down to the atomic levels of protons and neutrons, and that when we die this energy force is transferred from our earthly bodies to whatever the next plane of existence really is…Or to whatever we truly believe it is…..
I really enjoy reading history, I am an unabashed history geek, because to me it is just like time travel, I am also an unabashed sci-fi freak), because when you read about a certain historical place or time, you can go visit any time period in recorded history through books, and see it through the eyes of the con-temps, the contemporary people who actually lived during these different times….Connie Willis is an especially good author about this, her “Doomsday Book” about a young woman time traveler trapped in medieval England at the height of the Black Plague is an instant classic…
Well, ashes to ashes and dust to dust, they are all gone now, dead and buried, and in a 100 years so will I, and everybody alive today…I think Abraham Lincoln said that, it has always been a very comforting thought to me, and in no way do I construe this fact in a negative or gloomy way, it simply keeps things in perspective for me….
Recently I saw a picture in the newspaper and also watched a Net Flix short documentary of the 500 year old bones, the complete skeleton, of King Richard III of England, found intact in a tomb under a parking lot after all these years!…With modern day DNA analysis, they made a positive match from the bone marrow in the skeleton to an actual living descendant of his, they keep better track of these things over in England, so it was a 100% match…
His bones showed evidence of scoliosis, a curvature of the spine which you could clearly see, and they estimated his height at around 5’8” and his age at death around 32-33, with a massive kill shot to the neck and shoulder area evident, some sort of blunt force trauma, all which fit precisely all of the historical accounts of his having died in battle around this time…..
He was reputedly a very wicked king, supposedly he had his 2 young nephews murdered in the Tower of London to preserve his hold on the monarchy, but the story said that he only reigned for about 3 years before dying in battle. Kings and commoners, we all meet the same fate in the end, it’s what you do in between that really counts….. I have had a good life, but feel like I have lot more to contribute to the creative world, I feel I have miles to go before I sleep, we shall see if my plans bear fruit or wither away…..
It makes you wonder how and to what sort of existence evil people like Richard III are reincarnated… I know that several Eastern religions believe in the concept of “karma” wherein you are reincarnated as a higher or lower form of life depending on how you live your present day to day earthly life…Or the Golden Rule favored by most Western religions: “One should treat others as one would like others to treat them”….
I love reading and even re-reading books because I tend to race through them the first time I read them, and miss some of the best parts, the underlying philosophies of the author’s individual viewpoints….Especially if they are good, exciting books like the Connie Willis “Blackout” and “All Clear” set of books, about time travelers observing and being stranded in wartime London during the infamous Nazi blitz of London in 1940….
Apparently the people there basically lived in the subways every night, like the underground Muni or Bart stations we have today, and never knew what the streets outside would look like until the “all clear” siren sounded, meaning the Nazi air raids were over for that night, at least, and they could stick their heads outside and see for themselves…They had either survived the bombardment or not, and life as they knew it went on….
It is a wonder so many of these hardy Londoners survived, and it shows how history can be balanced on a razor’s edge, because apparently Hitler almost beat England, before America got involved in the war…. But besides being evil incarnate, Hitler was mentally unstable and impatient and made the major military tactical blunder of suddenly stopping the nearly complete beat down of London and abruptly turned to the East and invaded Russia, thus opening a two front war…
That was his major strategic military blunder of the whole war….. Russia is a huge, huge, country, and basically they just absorbed all the damage he did until the frozen winters and mechanical breakdowns and inevitable casualties drained the Wehrmacht, the German army, of all their men, tanks, modern equipment etc….It is hard to believe, but they were also still using horses in WWII!….
I don’t know why I am drawn to certain time periods, but I am especially fascinated by WWII, the Civil War, and medieval Europe, especially England, and I seek out and greedily devour all the sci fi and history books I can about those time periods…Like the other day I read a book about D Day, the Normandy invasion on June 6, 1944, that was the most pivotal point of that war, opening a second front in Europe across the English channel, no easy feat…The invasion was nearly a disaster, but the Germans were not quite ready for them to invade where and when they did, so by luck and determination the Allies pulled it off and history pivoted….
The only other successful invasion across the English channel I ever heard of was in 1066 or thereabouts, the battle of Hastings…. I am not sure of the exact name, anyway it was when William the Bastard invaded England from the other side, from the French side, and introduced and imposed his Norman ways on the resident Anglo Saxon English….. From that point on all of England’s nobility was derived from French royal blood, it was amazing how pretentious and entitled these people thought they were…The very idea of a nobility, of a class system where people assumed they were better because of their birth status rings foreign to my American ears, no wonder they have had so many revolutions in Europe over the centuries….
Oh make no mistake, we have a class system right here in the good old USA, but it is based solely on money, the rich are the new nobility, but nobody believes they are anything special except rich, not that they have any divine, God given right to rule…The rich people still fear and hate the poor people, so some things never change, but the whole concept of the divine right of kings and the inner nobility of certain classes of people, which stratifies English society to this day, seems absurd, outdated and anachronistic to me, and I am sure to most people….
Our American society is not as rigid as the English, it is more like the ocean, the rich people sail in yachts, the middle class swims to work every day and the vast majority, like me, lurk deep under the surface and observe and scavenge and do the best we can….. I would love to be rich but I would HATE to be famous, and to me rich is just having enough money to not think about having to worry about how much something costs, for example, I would not need more than I could spend! Plus if I were rich, I would donate most of my money to needy causes….
But to return to the concept of reincarnation, I think I am fascinated by those particular segments of history because I truly believe i was somehow involved in them…The WWII time period especially intrigues me, because so many young men died in that war, on both sides….Young people, cut off in the flower of their youth so abruptly, how can their existence have just ended so quickly, so finally forever? Their physical lives, of course, their deaths were real and tragically final, yes…But who can say with any certainty that they were not reincarnated?…
I myself am a product of the famous “Baby Boom”, the generation of Americans who were born immediately after the end of WWII, and have always believed there had to be some connection, some spiritual link, between the sudden deaths of all these mostly young people and the subsequent boom in births after the war….
It is my firm belief that I, and most of the other Baby Boomers were reincarnated into our present lives because of the sudden, abrupt cessation of these soldiers normal lifespans...Unlike the trendy Hollywood crowd probably thinks, I do not believe that i was some famous general or field marshal who died heroically in some now long forgotten glorious battle, much more likely some anonymous soldier, a private or a corporal say, slogging away in the mud and blood and carnage that is war, dying a senseless, too soon death for political agendas…..
All wars are fought for political agendas, even the righteous wars like WWII, perhaps the last “Good War” with clearly demarcated lines of good and evil, of sneak attacks and defense of country….The majority of wars have historically been fought mostly for the advancement and enrichment of personal fortunes, the acquisition of territory or the misguided belief that their side was the more righteous…
Both sides throughout history always believe their side was in the right, but as they say, history is only written by the victors…But just as I am not religious, neither am I a political animal, I consider myself simply a neutral, impartial observer of life…I have always been taught to respect and never argue about religion or politics….
To me, the belief set that I truly live my life by, fully supports the concept of reincarnation…I think that life does not end with our deaths on this earth, that we do not just shuffle off this mortal coil to some idealized heaven or hell…I believe that instead we progress to, or are somehow transferred to some other unknown plane of existence, and I further believe that the way we each live our own lives DOES have some bearing on how we are “reborn” or move on to whatever other level or plane of existence resides on the other side….
Maybe it is just as simple as that, people are just continuously being recycled into various other manifestations of life, or energy, according to the time and circumstance of how and when they died, and that further this transfer of energy is directly and irrevocably connected to how we each live our present lives in this present existence….This again is consistent with the belief in karma….I definitely believe in the afterlife…Too many cultures, widely separated by time and space have felt this way for me to not believe in it too, and I further definitely believe in reincarnation on a personal level….
The problem with this belief set of course is that nobody can ever remember with any certainty exactly who they were or what their previous lives were like, so there can never be an objective way to validate my theory…But then again, maybe it is just simply like the Aerosmith song by Steven Tyler “Dream On”……
“Who knows, where it comes or where it goes” …..