Thursday, November 29, 2012

Past Lives: Science & Documentation

Are past lives real or not? 
Every moment of our existence is illusory - existing, but not inherently existing, yet precious and important in terms of how we relate to others.

People once thought the earth was flat and that the sun revolved around the earth. Whoever claimed otherwise was roasted at the stake or lost his head. The majority opinion turned out, in retrospect, to have been mistaken. These changes in understanding reality led to revolutionary changes for all humanity - from transportation and trade routes, to space exploration and the development of the Internet.

Past and future lives are an accepted and well-known fact in all Asian countries and among the Druze people. Either reincarnation exists or it doesn't - only one answer is correct. Reincarnation cannot be refuted. However, abundant evidence exists that supports the existence of past lives. A change in our understanding of reality, regarding the way in which we exist, may bring significant changes in our daily conduct, for example, with regard to decisions and policy concerning environmental protection, peace and war, economics, generosity, altruism and more.

Geshe-ma Kelsang Wangmo

Geshe-ma Kelsang Wangmo, a German woman, today a nun in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, and the first woman to complete the long geshe degree program for advanced Buddhist studies, recommends watching the first of the documentary films about reincarnation presented here.

Following the publication of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's Statement Regarding the Issue of His Reincarnation, I thought to share these films, so that we may learn and understand how we and sentient beings exist.

There are future consequences to our thoughts, speech and actions, far beyond this life. I grew up in Western society, at least in this lifetime, studied science, and left a large question mark over the topic of reincarnation for many years. I listened to personal stories about ghosts and spirits, from Americans, Mexicans, Indigenous people, and about reincarnation from Druze people. Today I no longer have any trace of doubt.

The Tibetans say several things about doubt that would be worthwhile for us to know. According to one view, doubt is considered a wrong view and an obstacle to enlightenment. But it is also possible to make conscious and beneficial use of doubt. There are three kinds of doubt: doubt tending to the right, doubt tending to the wrong, and neutral doubt. If we keep an open mind, neutral doubt, and examine things deeply, we will be able to gradually develop doubt tending to the right, and then gradually attain a correct and precise view regarding the way in which reality exists. Ultimately, a clear and knowing mind is free from doubt.

With the wish that we may all progress towards lasting happiness, genuine inner peace and full enlightenment, here are several films, as well as several references and links. Happy viewing. 

The Boy Who Lived Before
Ever since he was two years old and first started talking, Cameron Macauley has told of his life on the island of Barra. Cameron lives with his mum, Norma, in Glasgow. They have never been to Barra. 
47 min

Past Life of James
The Unexplained James III World War II Pilot Reincarnated 
17:16 min (4 parts)

Reincarnation, children remember past lives
Popular journalistic topic in Sri Lanka news 9:32 min
Part 1 6:27
Part 2 3:05 

Dr. Jim Tucker
Interview with psychiatrist and past life researcher 9:40 min

Dr. Ian Stevenson 
10:37 min

BBC: Supernatural Science - Previous Lives

Geshe-ma Kelsang Wangmo lectures in English and is currently teaching in Israel November 19 - December 9, 2012. 
Geshe-ma's Israel teaching program (Hebrew & English) or contact Dharma Friends of Israel - Yedidei Hadharma b'Yisrael at gmail dot com

Further Reading 

Carol Bowman 

Many Lives, Many Masters by Brian Weiss, M.D.

Articles by Dr. Jim B. Tucker and Dr. Ian Stevenson, University of Virginia

The Ethics of Altruism

16 Guidelines for a Happy Life

Dalai Lama Foundation "Ethics for the New Millennium" Study Guide - 6 languages

95 Tibetans have self-immolated for freedom.
Please help Tibet:
Make Tibet a Zone of Peace