"If it is a Miracle, any sort of evidence will answer, but if it is a
Fact, then proof is necessary."
- Mark Twain
"We seem to have here (with reincarnation) one of those problems
wherein people readily agree on what it would take to establish
something they very much do not want to believe - and then when,
contrary to anyone's expectations, the evidence actually emerges
strongly supportive of the belief, they return (for no persuasive
reason) to add more conditions to what it would take to establish
what they very much do not want to accept. And they continue to
do so until it is virtually impossible that any such evidence
should ever emerge."
- Robert Almeder, Department of Philosophy, GSU
Legal Evidence in the Case FOR Reincarnation
When it comes to reincarnation, people can quite
stubbornly ignore the growing body of empirical evidence supporting the
reality of reincarnation. This raises the question:
"How would the case for reincarnation hold up
in a court of law given the current standards of legal evidence?"
When it comes to past lives, people always want
"solid evidence"...What would that be?
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When it comes to evidence, here is what the
rule of law says:
In a court of law, testimony consists of
statements or declarations of fact (oral or written) obtained from
witnesses taking an oath under penalty of perjury. "Eyewitness"
testimony comes from those who were involved or actually played a
part in the case or incident in question.
Past Life Testimony:
Here is proof offered in evidence:
When Shanti Devi (1926 - 1987) was four years
old, she told her parents her real home was in Mathura (and not in
Delhi were they lived). She explained that was where her merchant
husband, "Kedar Nath", lived. Upon investigation, a "Kedar Nath" was
located in Mathura. Just as Shanti had claimed, Nath had lost his
wife, Lugdi Devi, nine years earlier, ten days after having given birth
to a son. Shanti had used words from the Mathura dialect. More
importantly, when Kedar Nath traveled to Delhi, pretending to be his
brother, she immediately recognized Nath as being Lugdi Devi's husband
and also correctly identified Lugdi Devi's son. She knew intimate
details of Kedar Nath's life with his wife. When Shanti Devi traveled
to Mathura, she recognized several family members, including the
grandfather of Lugdi Devi. She also accurately recounted Lugdi's
deathbed scene, including promises Nath had made. All these little
known details - corroborated by eyewitnesses - caused Gandhi's
official investigative commission to endorse her reincarnation claim.
[From Gandhi's 1936 Commission's Report on
When the children of Mary Sutton met her
reincarnation, Jenny Cockell, one declared
"I can see my mother in her eyes!"
For many years, Jenny Cockell from
Northamptonshire, England, was haunted by the knowledge that she had
been Irish Mary Sutton who died 21 years before Jenny was born. When
Mary died, she left several very young children in a very unstable
home with her abusive alcoholic husband. Her dreams, memories, and
love for these "past life" children prompted her to search through
maps and local groups in Ireland to find them. When she located the
village of Malahide where Mary had lived, Jenny arranged reunions with
her now elderly children. Jenny was able to accurately recall many
incidents from the childhood of Mary's eldest son which he verified
and which no one else could have known about.
[From Jenny Cockell's book,
While at Appomattox Court House, Jeffrey Keene
correctly identified that the flag in the painting of the surrender of
the Army of Northern Virginia... was not the right one based on his
knowledge as the reincarnation of Confederate General John Brown Gordon.
The flag in the picture was the "third National Confederate flag... the
official flag at the time of the surrender, but it had not been issued
to the troops in the field yet" (which surprised even Keene!).
[From Jeffrey Keene's book, "Someone Else's
In a court of law, physical evidence consists
of physical objects intended to prove a fact at issue. "Real" physical
evidence consists of objects that were involved or actually played a
part in the case or incident in question. These objects include
artifacts recovered from being buried in the earth.
Past Life Physical Evidence:
Here is proof offered in evidence:
In 1953, Harry Martindale saw a column of Roman
soldiers marching through the basement of York Minister Cathedral.
Since what Martindale saw about the soldier's uniforms did not accord
with the historical knowledge at the time, his account was dismissed.
In the 1960s, excavations confirmed every last detail of Martindale's
vision... right down to what the Roman soldiers were wearing that, at
first, had seemed directly contrary to historical fact.
[From the history of York Minister Cathedral
Past Home Located:
Australian Gwen McDonald visited Somerset,
England and knew her way around perfectly even though she had not been
outside of Australia. She located a waterfall and a place where stepping
stones had been (locals confirmed the stones were removed 40 years earlier).
She pointed out an intersection where there had been five houses (locals
confirmed that they had been torn down 30 years earlier). She knew the
correct names of villages as they were 200 years ago even though they
do not exist on modern maps or their names were changed. She went directly
to the house and uncovered under the existing floor a special stone that
she had drawn during her regressions while still in Australia.
[From the Peter Ramster documentary on Gwen
Peter Hulme recalled a life as John Raphael, a
soldier serving in Cromwell's Army in 1649. He remembered that a battle
had been fought around a castle near the banks of "Lock Martin" which
appeared on local maps of the period. An excavation was performed at
the historical site... and ruins of the old castle were found. When
Hulme led them to a "dried up ravine", multiple artifacts from the
English Civil War, including musket balls, were found.
[From the British Central TV documentary on
Djebel el Alla recalled a past life in Damascus as
a wealthy man. Alla was a Druse, whose culture supports the belief in
reincarnation. When Alla arrived in Damascus, he traveled directly to
his former home to the astonishment of everyone (because he was only 5
years old). He claimed that the woman who lived there was his former
wife, supplying many family details that proved to be true. His most
remarkable claim was that his previous self had hidden a precise amount
of money in a cellar. When Alla took everyone to the cellar of his
former home, he quickly located the money... which, when it was counted,
was exactly what he had claimed it would be!
[From Roy Stemman's book, "One Soul, Many Lives"]
In a court of law, documents consist of writings
on paper (such as contracts, wills, letters, invoices, maps, architectural
plans, depositions, excerpts from law books, manuscripts, etc) which
corroborate the evidence derived from eyewitness testimony or supported
by physical objects.
Past Life Physical Documents:
Here is proof offered in evidence:
Australian Helen Pickering visited Aberdeen
College of Medicine in Scotland to prove her memories of her recent
past life as James Archibald Burns who had been a teacher there.
She insisted that - during Burns' lifetime there had been a door
where there was now a wall as well as a staircase now missing
(but visible on the original architectural plans). Local historian,
David Gordon found the staircase in the original plans but he could
not find the door given the existing documentation. After her visit,
additional plans of the college were located and - sure enough -
Pickering (through Burns) had been right about that missing door
[From the Peter Ramster documentary on Helen
Under hypnosis, a woman recalled a house where
one of the rooms had been made over into a chapel. Based on past life
recall, she claimed that the chapel contained a cupboard hidden behind
a panel where valuable items were safe-guarded. When the house was
located in Hampshire, the panel was opened (following her instructions)
and 400 year old deeds to the property were located.
[From Hugh Pincott, "Society for Psychical
English psychiatrist, Arthur Guirdham, was a
confirmed skeptic on reincarnation when he took on "Mrs Smith" as a
patient. She had a recurring nightmare of being burnt alive. Although
she had no previous knowledge of French medieval history, her dreams of
life in Toulouse among the Cathars, a heretical Christian sect, proved
to "remarkably accurate" after years of painstaking research. Her
description of a church in which religious prisoners were held was
confirmed by period documents. In 1944, "Mrs Smith" recorded word for
word songs which only were discovered in the Languedoc archives in 1967.
She produced correct drawings of period French coins, dress, jewelery
and layout of buildings. She also documented precise details of Cathar
rituals as well as family and social relationships later confirmed by
records kept by the Inquisition.
[From Arthur Guirdham's book, "Cathars &
If this evidence was presented, in my opinion,
it would hold up in a court of law. Yet, the most important court of
all, is what you think. What do you think?