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Sunday, March 29, 2009


Two posts ago I mentioned one of the major beliefs about our fate after death.
Reincarnation. We come back in some form, usually tied to how we've lived in this life.
Reincarnation is the belief that souls are re-embodied after death, based on how well one's lived one's life. This belief is a core belief of Hinduism, and I believe, Buddhism as well.

I presume that for the individual who is reincarnated there is no memory of one's previous life. Nor is there a re-unification with friends and loved ones from the previous life.

This is horrible! All the wisdom and knowledge that have been gathered in one life are gone and cannot be used in the next life. There is no reconnection with family and friends from the previous life. This doesn't fill me with any hope, rather with despair.

How can one do better the next time? Why would the next time be better than this time? Am I different, or is it just that my circumstances have changed? If it is just the circumstances, then why am I responsible for what seems to be my circumstances and not my own actions? Furthermore, what is karma, and how does it work to balance out who goes where? What is the mechanism for karma?

Lastly, how does one evaluate evil and good in this system? If people are working off poor decisions or bad things that they have done in previous lives, then why should I try and help them? It might just get in the way of what they need to do. Is there room for compassion and mercy? It doesn't seem so.

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