I recall having this conversation a long time ago, and was interested in what folk here now might think.
Reincarnation is not something I've ever believed in.
Let me explain. My beliefs aren't nearly as complicated as that. I believe that we are all part of the Universal Energy, just a particular manifestation of it, and when our body dies, our spirit becomes one with the Universe again. If necessary our essense can reform for family members or to get a message across, but for the most part - back in to the whole.
When a new baby is born, Universal Energy will create it's body and spirit - and somewhere in there might be an echo of a memory of mine, a penchant for pistachios - the inate knowledge of how to drive a pallet truck having never even seen one before that I had in my lifetime, the memory of the East Cliffs at sunset in dreams when they haven't a clue where it is and have never been there. But it won't have all of my experience and life behind it - there may be many echos from many others who have rejoined with the All, and it might experience some of those - or none.
I can't believe that I'm in some kind of spiritual Groundhog Day, and I don't.
To be more concise, I don't believe that my spirit in it's entirety is going to be placed into another body when this one dies, to re-live life again and again and again. I don't believe in reincarnation in that sense at all.
For those who do, I'm interested in how one would ever learn all of the lessons they are 'supposed' to, in order to be permitted to go to 'Heaven' or 'Summerlands'? Even if for example, someone claims to have some recollection of a 'past life' through regression - surely they wouldn't be able to remember all of the 'mistakes' they made in all of their previous lives in order to have a successful and acceptable do-over?
I mean no disrespect, but that seems like more of a punishment than anything else - a living hell perhaps for someone who believes in reincarnation - because the very fact of their existance means that they haven't got it right. And if they feel they have lived many lives - then they aren't 'getting it' at all - seems more like torment. How can the life lessons that one is supposed to learn, be lessons without any information about the mistakes made previously, to work with?
Surely if you can't remember your previous lessons and goals from other incarnations - then they are new to you anyway!
I suppose what I'm not getting ... well, is the point of it really. Let's look at one life-time for example. Say Jane has a friend that needs her help - but she is busy at work and flicks them off. She then discovers that it was serious and they're in hospital in a coma at the hands of another person. She learns from this experience, and pays attention to her friends in future - to ensure she won't make the mistake again.
Jane has also just come out of her second abusive relationship. This time she's managed to identify why she is enabling this kind of behaviour and makes the conscious decision to change, because of her past experiences.
She's been in Customer Services, and the pent up aggression that she has not been able to vent at home, she's been venting at work - and has been very unpopular with Customers and co-workers alike. Her Supervisor met with her for an appraisal, asked the right questions without being overly critical - and she was able to confide in this person - and that helped her to get out of her abusive relationship at home and identify how NOT to face that situation again. Work relationships are now good.
Jane has the benefit of experience and hindsight in THIS life. Not from other lives. Therefore what is the point of being reincarnated if it doesn't help you in the here and now?
What makes up her personality? Is this lost when she is reincarnated? If so, then she becomes a totally different person - how is that reincarnation?
In the next life, if she is the same personality, is she not going to be predisposed to immerse herself in work and neglect her friends again, or get into abusive relationships, or be the office bitch? What good would living another life be in that case? Yes you will have different experiences - but when one reaches the end of their final reincarnation, do they remember all the lives they've lived at once - thereby knowing all the experiences and lessons?
Told you I didn't 'get it'.
Any explanation from someone who truly believes it - well I'd be extremely interested.