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History, Evolution, and The Darwin Debate

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Reincarnation: A Darwin buster

March 8th, 2006 · 1 Comment

Someone asked me about my reference to, and beliefs in/about, reincarnation in the post on the seventeenth Karmapa of Tibet (scroll down). I cannot vouch for the claims of reincarnated lamas of Tibet, the labyrinth is too tricky to figure out. It seems to me however they once had the extraordinary knack of doing what they claimed, then fell into a rut. What a strange way to do things!

Reincarnation is quite a tough subject, and requires a considerable prelude–but we don’t have the time for that just at the moment. So here we go, briefly. I can elaborate later. But keep in mind that my emphasis is on a scientific context. I have no time for New Age blather on this issue.
First step: Read and study some Kant, especially the Preface to his first critique. Enter the mood of critical thinking on metaphysics, and consider his discourse on the question of soul, with respect to the limits of our knowledge. That settles nothing but it reminds us that we cannot have knowledge about the reality of soul, but we cannot either, as Darwinists would claim, have knowledge about the non-existence of soul. These are issues of epistemology. Perhaps there are other ways to arrive at understanding here.
But the odds are against you here. So be wary. Don’t let scientific thinking be displaced by suspicions of a greater unseen reality here.
Let me say, first, the monotheistic beliefs about soul tend to be gross distortions of myth. You are better off without them. Kant analyzes those also, in relation to the ‘summum bonum’, and does that well, but he acknowledges the problems, and makes no hard claims.
Monotheism has totally botched this question. But that doesn’t settle the matter. Here scientific reductionism has produced a culture that is essentially mired in ignorance, harassed by a religious culture whose beliefs are out of control, religious propaganda used to exploit. It is hard to operate in such an environment.

In any case, to put it directly, the balance of the so-called ‘evidence’, which is NOT scientific evidence, but the testimony of millennia from many sources, is that reincarnation is real. Such a statement must be qualified at once: the term is not defined properly, and its usage is incoherent. It makes no sense on the surface. The tally of souls and bodies doesn’t match, for example, there are many other problems. But none of that contradicts the probable truth of reincarnation–whatever it means. You must let me not say much more.

Here we need a time out: conversion to belief in reincarnation can be a dangerous moment. Such thinking will create confusion and lead to fantasies, anxieties, and finally wishfulfilments. Don’t let that happen. Further, once out of a scientific context, your mind will run wild and produce nonsense, or else you will fall prey to the immense amount of bad writing on this subject, ninety-nine percent worthless. The New Age field is a wasteland.

So, just at the moment of considering this, adopt on the one had an almost positivistic caution, and on the other a studied ‘dialectical’, that is yes/no, approach: yes, there may be some truth to this, no, there is no truth to this. Alternate here. That will keep your thinking keen, and ready to do the mental garbage disposal needed to stay out of the quagmire of false beliefs.

Reincarnation falsifies Darwinism at once. The organism, of humans at least, is paradoxically related to the ‘self’ that is not self. I say, Darwinism as a theory of natural selection, not the question of evolution. How soul questions relate to evolution questions is so far totally beyond our capacity to know. We do know however that in the unity of subject/object dualities (an old philosophical standby, mostly incoherent) the clue is lurking.

So, without saying anything more for the moment, reincarnation is real, but beware of what you believe here.
Enough for the moment.

But you can sense why some people shake their head at Darwin. This complete botch of an evolution theory.

Tags: Evolution · New Age · Science & Religion

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 nicolino // Oct 2, 2011 at 3:32 am

    Interesting piece. Does reincarnation necessarily have to falsify evolution? Todd Phillips, PhD, a scientist at Laurentian University working under Dr. Michael Persinger, has a series of youtube videos, one of which is about his theory of darwinian reincarnation. Worth a look.

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