(There’s bit of humor and sarcasm in this post, so…relax ’bout it.)
Hot on the heals of my recent article on the Rebirth comes this article about the false religious concept of Reincarnation and how a belief in Reincarnation may have negative effects on the brain. I’ve excerpted pieces of the article from MSNBC with the main points and pasted the relevant sections below, along with a few pithy comments. Enjoy.
People who believe they have lived past lives are more likely to make certain types of memory errors, according to a new study. The propensity to make these mistakes could, in part, explain why people cling to implausible reincarnation claims in the first place (“Implausible” is an interesting descriptive term for reincarnation, for which there is ZERO evidence).
The researchers found that, compared to control subjects who dismissed the idea of reincarnation, past-life believers were almost twice as likely to misidentify names. This kind of error, called a source-monitoring error, indicates that a person has difficulty recognizing where a memory came from (Wait, could this be evidence of reincarnation? Uh, no, keep reading).
People who are likely to make these kinds of errors might end up convincing themselves of things that aren’t true, said lead researcher Maarten Peters of Maastricht University in The Netherlands (Like reincarnation, or rebirth, so go ahead and swat that fly, then go enjoy a burger).
As for what might make people more prone to committing such errors to begin with, McNally says that it could be the byproduct of especially vivid imagery skills (Insert laugh here. This reminds me of a show on Discovery Channel where two different people were profiled to be the same reincarnated Buddhist monk, or the multiple people who claim to have been Joan of Arc or Abe Lincoln, or Cleopatra. I remember an old Red Foxx joke from the 70s, “In my former life I was a cockroach.” How come no one claims stuff like that? Must be that vivid imagination).
And once people make this kind of mistake, they might be inclined to stick to their guns for spiritual reasons, McNally said. “It may be a variant expression of certain religious impulses,” he said. “We suspect that this might be kind of a psychological buffering mechanism against the fear of death.”
All kidding aside, let’s be serious for a moment. People are prone to make up all kinds of things because they fear their own mortality. We all recognize something is wrong with us—the Bible defines it as sin. Rebirth offers no hope for the problem of sin, just another go around to try and get it right with no ultimate judge, just endless cycles of futility.
Rebirth is a cruel belief.
Resurrection, on the other hand, offers a true and final hope—but also a deadline.
“For it is given to man ONCE to die, then the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).
Yes, we may still fear death—especially those who deny the hope freely offered—but our final natural death can also be embraced knowing the joy we immediately enter into with Christ, and the soon to come resurrection of our bodies to be like his. Resurrection offers hope of an eternal joyful experience without end since we only need to experience this life ONCE and then enter an eternal reward in Christ. This is far superior to enduring the futile and imaginary cycles of rebirth leading to nothingness.
Joy is far superior to nothingness.