The search for memories of past lives

I began to read about the research on past-life memories of little children by Dr. Ian Stevenson decades ago. The scepticism expressed by some professionals in related fields continues, now covering the investigations being continued by Prof. Jim Tucker. Some of the stakeholders in many a scholarly discipline will not accept any reliable evidence which challenges their closely-held beliefs until someone tips them out of their comfort zones.

I have in mind Immanual Velikovsky who, in the early 1950s, forced the experts to accept the reality of cosmic collisions. Now we await them!

As one would expect, research on the issue of past-life memories of little children has been rigorous. Stacy Horn’s article ‘The children who’ve lived before’ in the May 2015 issue of the Reader’s Digest contains the following (referring to the work of Prof. Jim Tucker, who is continuing the work of Dr. Ian Stevenson in the Division of Perceptual Studies at the University of Virginia, USA, over a total of more than 45 years).

“ … When he first learns about a subject, he checks for fraud, deliberate or unconscious, by asking two questions: ‘Do the parents seem credible?’ and ‘Could the child have picked up the memories through TV, overheard conversations, or other ordinary means?’ If he can rule out fraud, he and his team interview the child and his or her family to get a detailed account about the previous life. Then the researchers try to find a deceased person whose life matches the memories. This last part is essential because otherwise the child’s story would be a fantasy.”

The message from this is (as Stacy Horn wrote) “ … encouraging people to consider the meaning of consciousness and how it might survive our deaths.”

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