March 5, 2012
By RachelKathryn BRONZE, Las Vegas, Nevada
RachelKathryn BRONZE, Las Vegas, Nevada
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

There are nine hundred million Hindus, three hundred and seventy-six million Buddhists, and two hundred and twenty-five million Taoists estimated in the world today. All of which are major religions that believe in reincarnation. Reincarnation is the rebirth of a soul in a new body. The belief of reincarnation is said to date back during the iron age or 1200 B.C, but there is more proof found in 600 B.C. Greek and Indian philosophy. Even though the belief is extremely old, it is still a pretty large part of the world today. Spiritual healers and modern oracles preach and study the belief, some even claim to be able to read past lives. The above religions are dominant in eastern countries such as India, China and other Asian countries. But, reincarnation is not a widely popular belief amongst American and European culture and is criticized, when it should just be understood.

James Leininger who is now eleven years old is an excellent example and may be a large amount of proof to the existence of reincarnation. When James was two he began his obsession with planes. He eventually began to have vivid nightmares of a man dying in a plane by fire. James's parents were doubtful of any "former life", but eventually his mother Andrea came around to the idea when she watched a video of her son at age three doing a preflight check on a plane. She took James to a therapist who believes the dead can be reborn and both his mother and the therapist encouraged James to share his memories. He started telling his parents about the ship his plane took off from called the Natoma and the name of a man he flew with, Jack Larson. Both turned out to be real. Eventually James told his parents how his plane was shot in the engine by the Japanese. Further investigation showed that a man by the name of James M. Huston Jr. took off from Natoma, flew with Jack Larson, and died at the age of twenty-one from a direct hit to engine from the Japanese during World War II. His parents are no longer skeptical of reincarnation and believe their son was James Huston.

Reincarnation can be an explanation to humanity and it's destiny. The thought of living many former lives and having more lives to come can be exciting and can add comfort to one's mind about the after life. Reincarnation is destined by karma. Karma is fate that is the affect from a cause. Your lives are determined on whether you were a good or bad person in your past life which can be an explanation to why some are rich, while others are starving, or why some are suffering to a disabled life and some are the healthiest people alive. The reason so many people in America do not believe in reincarnation is because this country's dominant religion, Christianity, is that of one God deciding your final judgment and not believing that would mean rejecting God and suffering an eternity in Hell.

Skeptics try to contradict the belief of reincarnation by asking questions such as; if reincarnation exists and we replace new bodies with old souls then how is it the population is increasing? Who are we to determine if we are the only planet with life on it, we live in one solar system of billions that have yet to be explored. Therefore, life can be coming from many different planets. More people shun the idea of reincarnation then believe in it, which is understandable, but people should at least accept religious tolerance and not judge others of their beliefs.

Hinduism believes there is no certain number of times one can be reincarnated. You become reincarnated as many times as needed until attaining enlightenment. Buddhism believes basically the same way, where you are reborn until you've reached enlightenment. Both believe in an after life once one has reached enlightenment. On the other hand, Taoism believes that there is no afterlife and you are reborn over and over as an eternal soul. The longer one lives the closer they are to achieving complete Tao, which would be immortality.

Reincarnation may not be what everyone believes but it should be at least known and understood by society before deciding to reject it all together. It's an intriguing belief and one that is quite common, just not amongst society's where the dominant religion is monotheistic. A lot of people don't think certain things will happen to them such as Andrea, James's mother, a person who did not believe in past lives until she realized her son's experiences and capabilities of remembering his. Even if people have not been affected by reincarnation it should be given a chance and not looked at so absurdly.

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