The Reality of Life after Death
Hindus, Buddhists, Chinese Japanese all believe in the concept of soul, heaven and hell. But they also believe that the heaven and hell is only the beginning of a journey. Heaven and hell is only a temporary residence. The soul must return once again to earth. The time you stay in the temporary heaven or hell depends on your karma.
It is the concept of cause and effect that forms up good and evil. But there the bottom line is if you do good, you acquire good karma. And if you do bad actions, it will pump up the bad karma in your life’s ledger.
Even if you do good karma, you cannot stay in heaven forever. You have to come back to the earthly imperfection. So, the subtle idea of good karma is not good enough. You are permanently tied to the wheel of karma. The cycle of birth and reincarnation.The karmic wheel propels the vehicle of suffering.
Hinduism and Buddhism Theories on Reincarnation
According to Hinduism and Buddhism, there is an ultimate perfected way of living. The attainment of this gets you off the wheel of karma. Hindus call it moksha or liberation. And Buddhists call it nirvana, which means an extinction of desire.
There are differences in the philosophical views of Judeo–Christian and Hindu–Buddhist in what happens after death. In some philosophical approaches, the model of after death reality generally depends on whether a culture is materially rich or poor. The motive of worship is to nurture people to do good deeds rather than evil deeds. People hope to enjoy life after death if a culture is poor.
If they know about reincarnation, they do not fear to be bad for a while. Since they can be good in their next life. They already know about hell and don’t need an eternity of it. That is why the idea of eternal hell is important to keep them conscious.
Influence of Karma
On the other hand, the idea of reincarnation has been told in affluent societies. Most people are middle class and live in a class system of affluent society. Becoming poor is the worst thing that can happen to you if you are middle class. Since bad karma not only puts you in hell but also puts you in a lower-lesser life form(a lower class) in the next incarnation.
This was the system in affluent ancient India, where the idea of reincarnation initially flourished. This trend is changing now in India. Since most of the people are poor, the idea of reincarnation is no longer popular. However, the western society is increasingly becoming the high-class system with increased impact. Hence, the idea of reincarnation is now coming back in these societies.
Possibilities of Life Before Life
Does it make sense?
Even after 100 deaths, the basic concepts of God, good, and evil, soul, heaven, and hell is unknown. And even after 300 deaths, the idea of reincarnation and the wheel of karma is unknown to human beings.
Why not life before life?
If there is life after death. What is the reason behind the bad things that happen to good people?
[ WHERE DO WE GO AFTER DEATH]
The most important question is “Why did a truly and infallible God give everyone unequal lives, some are happy some are not, some go to heaven while some in hell, why?
The idea of liberation and salvation is the answer. You attain it only after you have indulged in a lot of “karmic bonds“.You get indulged into karmic bonds when you search for the true nature of reality and your connection to it. When you realize the truth about yourself, you come to know that God and the universe are not separate and independent from one another. You can only enter in it when the complete universe becomes your family. You will then want to serve your family, this is the only way towards liberation.
Impact of Western Thoughts on Soul and Reincarnation
A stage that we can call immortality of the soul is free from births and deaths. The idea of reincarnation is not entirely Eastern. Western culture has accepted reincarnation as a part of Judaism into which Jesus was born. Many philosophers said that before 553 A.D., Christianity accepted the idea of reincarnation. It is said that during that year the fifth Ecumenical Council passed a petition against the idea of soul reincarnation. Although scholars think that the council never made any petition officially, but still the concepts and beliefs of reincarnation faded after that.
The west is not a division between Western and Eastern culture. But it is a division of the esoteric and exoteric threads of western religions. The esoteric branch of Islam had embraced the idea of reincarnation. The Hasidic Judaism, the gnostic and other mystical traditions in Christianity support reincarnation as well.
Famous role-models like
- David Hume
- Ralph Waldo Emerson
- Henry Thoreau
- Benjamin Franklin,
- J.W. Von
all believed in the reincarnation. Goethe wrote:
The soul of man is like to water;
From Heaven it cometh
To Heaven it riseth
And then returneth to Earth,