Episode 76

March 10, 2024


Reborn ... Again! | Ajahn Brahm

Reborn ... Again! | Ajahn Brahm
Ajahn Brahm Podcast
Reborn ... Again! | Ajahn Brahm

Mar 10 2024 | 01:12:19


Show Notes

Ajahn Brahm talks about reincarnation … again! And helps us all get a sense of perspective about the meaning of our lives.

This dhamma talk was originally recorded using a low quality MP3 to save on file size (because internet connections were slow back then – remember dialup?) on 18th June 2004. It has now been remastered and published by the Everyday Dhamma Network, and will be of interest to his many fans.

These talks by Ajahn Brahm have been recorded and made available for free distribution by the Buddhist Society of Western Australia under the Creative Commons licence. You can support the Buddhist Society of Western Australia by pledging your support via their Patreon page.

View Full Transcript

Episode Transcript

Reborn Again by Ajahn Brahm [NOTE: AI generated transcription – expect errors!] This the title of this evening's torches. So those know what they're letting themselves in for this evening. Is, uh, most of the talk which I give here by request. And before I went off to Singapore a couple of weeks ago, somebody actually asked me to please talk again about the subject of reincarnation. So today's talk will be about rebirth. Reincarnation. And I've talked about that many times before, especially in my previous life. But now, well, there's talk of being reincarnated again this evening. This is a reincarnation of the talk on reincarnation. Instead of you people coming in. So those of you who are going out, don't worry, you'll hear this talk in the next life. It'll be reincarnated on CD. Thanks to our wonderful technical people somewhere. Okay. And most people are coming in and going out. I love talking about that subject because it's part of Buddhism and it's not just a theory. Something you can prove is something which many, many people feel extremely comfortable about. And it's something which is almost like a cause for me to try and teach more about reincarnation so that it will actually change many of the ways we look at life in particular sometimes that, you know, tear my hair out sometimes. That's why I'm so bold as a monk about what people do is the most important thing. The biggest problem for most people is a matter of life and death. And for Buddhists, it's not a matter of life and death anymore. Because how many times you've lived, how many times you died? It actually puts many of the things which we look at in our world in a completely different perspective. And some of the reasons why we take action or inaction have a completely different meaning when we look upon reincarnation and take that as a natural truth, as a guideline for our lives. So this is not just a theoretical talk, but the consequences of the understanding and acceptance of reincarnation literally change not just your life, but many lives. So you're going to go down to the start of things. It's a strange that many people say the reincarnation is an eastern idea, but anyone who knows history knows that all of the Greek philosophers, they were all into reincarnation. Where there was the famous ones of Socrates and Plato and Pythagoras. They were all into reincarnation. They taught previous lives so that Empedocles, Heraclitus, all these great philosophers. The reason I mention this is because if you ever read about sort of, you know, Western governments or Western, um, intelligentsia, they keep on always saying that they got their culture from Greece. And somehow the Greek culture is somehow different than sort of eastern culture. But now we took a look at that particular time, and there's hardly much difference. Certainly all the Greeks believed in reincarnation. It is got dropped in about the third century A.D. by the Christians, and they just made it anathema. And then it just got wiped out. But the truth is, so that was part of Western culture as much as it was part of eastern culture. And you can't just wipe those things out. Socrates. And prior to that, keep getting reborn again and just teaching the same things. And interestingly, one of the proponents of reincarnation in Christianity. Perhaps the most famous of them, the early church father, called origin. He taught reincarnation as part of Christianity. And perhaps one of the most interesting things about that fella that he had a teacher. And then I couldn't really tell exactly who was his teacher guy, because they had no other records of him in, uh, Alexandria increase in the Middle East at that time, in the heart of European culture. You know who Origen's teacher was? It was a fellow called Ammonia sucker. That might sound strange to you until you realize I just come back from Singapore and there. As many of you would know, the surname, the family name comes first in their name. So if you say, you know, like a person called Henry Chan in Singapore, they call him Chan Henry. Same with Greek. She turned that name around. Instead of ammonia, sucker and sucker is to send the party for Masaka. Self-managed. Sasha. Sasha. Ammonia. What does that sound like? All of you were buddies. You know that? That's a dead ringer for Sasha mooney. One of the epithets. The name by which the word is well known by. Very clear to me anyway. The early church father. His teacher, was a Buddha. Thank you, Mooney. Anyway, whatever the people actually believe in reincarnation. The very early part. Unfortunately, we Western culture actually took that completely out of their religions and out of their culture. And I think we've. Are. We suffered for it as a result, because once we only have the idea of one life and that's all we have, you can imagine the justified angst and grief when, say, little child, eyes have only got one chance and they've learned they got killed by somebody who was. Main chord or whatever. It might have been an accident, but how unlucky. They've had one chance of the life. They've only had a few years. No wonder the parents feel grief when one person has been growing up and they haven't had the full opportunity. That seems so sad. And where people actually try and live. No matter what the life becomes the most important thing, that life becomes sacred in and of itself. And because of the sacredness of life, you can see where many people get their ethics from and their ethical problems as a result with things like abortion, euthanasia. Because if life is sacred. In other words, we've only got one chance of it then. The ethics becomes skewed. But if you can actually put the mind around many, many lives, then one death doesn't take on such a great importance anymore. If you don't get it right this time, you can get it right the next time. It's not as if you know why did that child have no chance? They have got a chance. Another chance next time. Short lines. Long lines, middle lines. We've had many, many lives. So that's just a taste of how the understanding or acceptance of reincarnation can actually change the way we look at life and death matters, and about the idea of the sacredness of life. It's not the fact that you live long and a full life which is important in Buddhism. It's actually how one lives the life which becomes important. Quality of life. Meaning of life becomes far more important under the idea of reincarnation than just a death. Her death becomes just an event, an event amongst many other events, rather than a finality when death becomes a finality. The test becomes an extreme. And then we do get extremist ethical positions against abortion, against euthanasia or whatever. And we get great grief. We get great sadness. We want to live at any cost. So this is actually one of the problems. The belief in reincarnation. If it was held true by the majority of people, would change the way we live. Just not easy things like about the care of the environment, global warming. If every politician who was alive today knew they were going to come back. I'm actually have to live with the consequences of their policies. Wouldn't I have a greater incentive of looking after this planet when they know they're going to have to come back here and live in it? Wouldn't it be more important for them to look on a big picture and not just the next election? But now the next verse. Wouldn't it be important to do so? So you can see there's great consequences of people accepting the idea of rebirth. But people keep on saying that, well, where's the proof? Where's the evidence? Because one nice thing about Buddhism as a religion that it says don't believe. And as you can prove unless the evidence is out there. And one of my sort of, uh, comprises what? There is heaps of evidence out there. You just have to go and look for it. But those people who don't look for the evidence. Just like some of our politicians who don't actually look for the evidence of the abuse in the prisons in Iraq. It's there on their table. They just don't look for it. It's a similar, isn't it? Sometimes we don't actually look at it, sir, because we don't want to see it. But the evidence is there. Many people in our lives in Australia have spontaneous memories of their previous lives. And these aren't crazy people. And their memories are actually affirmed by the revelations and loved ones. They get knowledge of things which happen, which could not have, they could not have got from elsewhere. Sometimes they're spooky, and if ever you've come across someone who's remembered their past life and that past life has been in your family, you become convinced. Because the evidence is just so overwhelming to anyone who wants to check out the evidence. As a scientist, as a rational person, as a free thinker, a free thinker, like any freedom has to have its responsibilities. And you should look at the truth, look at what's actually out there, what the evidence truly is. You all know we have those beautiful books by Doctor Ian Stevenson, Professor Ian Stevenson, who spent his whole life researching such cases, and it'd be good to look at those cases. Well-researched. Honest. Great science in the sense that he put all of the controls in place to make sure that nothing would be written, which was could be challenged on its authenticity. By having witnesses available. And there you have unimpeachable evidence of reincarnation. And some of you may have anecdotal evidence, as in many, many strange stories of people who remember their past lives. And what happens when you do that? Then the last time I gave a talk in reincarnation. But there are many fascinating stories of people who remember their past lives. This is one of the great cases I came across was this person in Sydney whose aunt was a wealthy businesswoman. When she died, she got reborn as this Buddhist. His name is Trevor. Has his daughter. Everybody. When the baby was born came out to look. Oh, doesn't that look like your aunt? And it was his aunt. Many, many recollections came to that little baby. Remember when he was telling me this? The two recollections, which I remember was when this little he came into his into his lounge room or whatever with a cup of coffee, and the baby just went berserk, saying, daddy, give me my cup back. That's my cup, not yours. It was his aunt's cup. He'd inherited it going crazy when they got anywhere near the mansion in which he used to live. Her recall was so great, the whole family accepted the fact that there was. His arms, now reborn as his daughter. I mention that story because it shows that rebirth very often happens in the same families. Is a karmic connection, a craving, a love attachment, if you like. Which actually brings us close to people used to love before. Who is another? So I'm just scanning to make sure this lady is not here this evening. But there's another lady, a Thai lady who was in born in the northeast of Thailand, and she recalled her previous life. Her son from her last life was her uncle in this one. She died quite young in a previous life, and now her uncle, her son from the previous life, happened to be the headmaster at the school where she went for four years. Yeah. Those times in time in Thailand, in the northeast, those schools were very strict. When the teacher walked in, everyone had to stand up. And if anyone did anything wrong, they'll get the cane. Now imagine this young girl going to school for the first time. Her recollection of her previous lives was so clear that everyone in the village knew. In a previous life, she was the teacher's father and a teacher. He knew that that little girl was his mother. Report. So when the teacher came in, everyone stood up. Except this little girl. How could you stand up for your son? Someone should stand up for him. I'm your mum, said this little six year old. And how could the teacher hit your mom and punish your mother? You just can't do this. And so this ladies has said she didn't learn anything in school. Not much. She could do whatever she wanted. The teacher couldn't punish her because she was a rebirth of his mum. It is a very difficult situation. That's a true story. There's many stories like that. Even some famous people. One interesting case, which I read because it was an interesting case because I knew this man, he was actually a personality, a TV personality, a comedian in the UK called Roy Hudd. Anyone who is about my age who grew up in England would probably know him. He was on the television very often. Roy had hates you double D on the way back from a theatre one afternoon, he lost his way in London. He got lost. He turned down a street. Not knowing where he was going. But soon as he went down that street. Just like many people sometimes experience goosebumps. Hairs on the back of your head. Something strange coming, coming up as you turn down that street. He saw the house where he lived in his previous life. And then that just recognition, huge amounts of memories came back. He remembered his previous life because he stumbled across the house in which he had lived many years before. He knocked on the door of that house because he was a well known personality, they were quite surprised. They knew who he was straight away. And when he said who, who he had been. He took the owners of the house on a guided tour around a house he never been in before in his life. He wrote this article about it. Perhaps the most interesting part of that story in many houses in London. If any of you have been to that city, you'll find little blue metal circles put on houses where famous people have lived before. That house had such a circle. The house recognized this previous owner. Him in his previous life. In his life before, he had been a person called Dan Leno, who was one of the most famous musical entertainers. He was an entertainer in his previous life. By the name of Dan Leno. I knew a bit about it. I think this music hall. And now he died, got reborn and was an entertainer again called Roy Hudd. Fascinating examples. If you have a chance to talk to such people, they would affirm without any shadow of doubt that that was them. For them, it's clear for them. It's true because they have their clear memories, and their memories are confirmed time and time and time again. Some of you might know someone who's had memories of a past life, and they will be so sure that yes, I was there. The point is, if one person could do that and it's more than one if it's 20, 3000, 200 people in this world who can prove that they live before. Isn't it not reasonable to say we've all lived before? We've all been reborn. Most of us can't remember. We can't even remember that we were born. Sometimes people actually ask you this. One of the questions they ask to try and challenge the idea of rebirth is that if we are reborn, why can't we remember it? And the answer is, can you remember your own birth into this world? How many people can remember the moment they were born that came out of their mother's womb? Just because you can't remember it didn't mean it didn't happen. In the same way. It's because of our lack of memory skills. That's why most of us can't recall our passwords. But there are other indications. Our character traits. Where did they come from? If anyone who's had a baby. Would know that the baby is not the father, it's not the mother. It's not a combination of the two. It comes from somewhere else. Parents know this. It has strange actions. When I was in Singapore just the last week, someone told me of a spooky experience. Imagine if this happened to you. The baby had just been born after 1 or 2 days. It didn't say how long, but in the first week the mother had lying on the bed, had the baby on top of her, just lying on her stomach, and the baby sat up and folded its legs in full lotus as if it was meditating. I mean, really meditating. That really spooked the mum. I never told her to do that. Now those characters, you've probably seen that in some documentaries about people who can play the piano perfectly and they never had any, not even one lesson. Where did all that come from? The evidence is so compelling, you have to actually be very, very stubborn not to accept. There are beings here. Who certainly lived before. And if they have, why not you? And if that's the case, you've lived before. This is your only life. Are you going to live again? Again, there's so much scientific evidence that consciousness does survive death. The famous article, which I keep referring to in the Lancet journal, the American Medical, the British Medical Association, has only about 3 or 4 years ago by Professor Pim van Lommel, titled Consciousness Survives Death. Who actually showed that. People with near-death experiences, what I call out the body experiences floating out of their body on the operating table. And coming back and describing the procedures and the conversations of what happened. Had a certain time. And it was very easy for the nurses and doctors to confirm that those things actually did happen. What is fascinating that they could describe the medical procedures. If any of you have seen a documentary or actually been well know, sometimes you have these operations under local anesthetic. You're lying on the back that you can't see what's going on over here. Very often you've got a mask over your face. But these people could actually see. Have a bird's eye view of the operation. She could only be seen as if you were floating above. In a position where you could actually have the only view possible to describe those procedures. Time and time again, people describe these things. So this doctor, Professor Van Longmore, decided to do some research on this and found that all the cases where people had out-of-body experiences and could describe in accurate detail conversations, actions, medical procedures which were done at this time, all of those people, what he actually found were the most amazing part of that research, put in the British Medical Association journal, The Lancet. Well, at that time. People were dead. They're under cardiac arrest. The heart was not beating, and most importantly, they were brain dead. The brain was not working. There was no brain activity whatsoever. It couldn't have been an imagination. It couldn't have been some other thing just cause in the brain. Because at that time they were brain dead. The revived afterwards. The EEG was flat. Fascinating little piece of evidence. And that's why he said, look, they were conscious at the time. There was no brain activity. There were, uh, clinically dead. Therefore, consciousness does survive death. And as many of us know, it survives death. Anyone who's seen a ghost knows that consciousness survives death. I know many ghost stories, and I'm not going to tell the ghost stories now, but only just as an aside. When in the conference I just came back from in Singapore last weekend, one of the Western monks. Some of you might remember Venerable Sujata. He is from Perth and he was now in a monastery in Sydney, wasn't he? And he was doing a little presentation on on Buddhist ideas of life and death. And he couldn't resist telling a couple of ghost stories. But over there in this conference, they had all the special effects. So. So was there at the time. So when he started telling his ghost stories, all the lights went down. They had a dry ice machine sending clouds of smoke on the stage, and through the speakers came this this background music which you hear on, um, ghost uh, on ghost movies. Because everyone cracked up laughing. Now we could take such things seriously. But real ghost stories are serious and many people have seen ghost. If you haven't seen one yourself, you probably know a friend, someone you can trust who has seen them. Well, how can that be? Unless there is life after death or consciousness survives death? Even just being cheeky because I'm a great friends with, um, Abbott. Placid. He's the the head of the Benedictine monastery in New Nausea. They go and visit. Come and visit us. Once a year we go and visit him once a year. And we're very great friends. And I was very cheeky once when I was in university, this very, very old monastery. Had any ghosts in here? Do you believe in ghosts? And he said, because in the cathedral he said, no, no, we don't believe in ghosts. What about the Holy Ghost? Then I call you out. He was just laughing. He knows me and I know him well. But there are such things as ghosts. Many people have actually seen them. His life surviving death. There are heavenly beings as well. Davis and other stories about those which I've told here and other occasions. So if there are those beings there, how can they exist? Human beings who got me born into those states. Here's a good story about rebirth. This was actually one of the monks who time monks who comes here every now and again. It was the story of the monkey who got reborn as a human being. Because in they. You know that in, um, Buddhist monasteries, the the monks are very compassionate. And, uh, it's one of our important parts of being a Buddhist is kindness to animals. And so in some parts of Thailand that whenever, sometimes they see, like an animal who's being mistreated, like a monkey who's being put in a cage just uses a pet. And very often, like kind people would buy that monkey and actually give it to the monastery to look after. Because thinking that such monkeys can't actually live and survive in the wild, and at least in a monastery, they'd have the forest. Monasteries had freedom actually to roam around. And number two, the monks would look after them, protecting them. They'd be safe from hunters. So one day, this person, they found this monkey being mistreated. They're really badly mistreated. And I brought it and took it to a monastery. And they released it in this forest monastery. I've been there quite a couple of times. And of course, this monkey soon, because though the monks were really, really kind, would actually look after the monks and was quite friendly with them. It was very, very cute. Because now every afternoon when the monks had their tea time, the monkey also had to have his cup of tea and he would hold his tea just like this, with all the little monks sitting there on the stool and everything. Surfing is t really cute to see. But the monkey was also very intelligent. And sometimes his people would come and actually visit the monastery like people visit our monastery down at serpentine, or visit Sisters Monastery up in Ghana. And when they visit, they'd ask questions. And some people were cheeky with the monks. And if any person was cheeky with this monk, the senior monk. The monkey would actually get them what he would do. He'd go to the first person who was this really nice monkey business, really so soft and playful, and people would stroke the monkey and the monkey, which has no smile or do what monkeys do when they're having a good time, and then they go to the next person in line, and they'd also pet him and stroke him. Really nice. I mean, people like stroking pets, especially when they're not nice and soft. And then you go to the next person. When they get to the person who is cheeky, they go to pet him and he bites them to teach them a lesson that you shouldn't be cheeky with the monks. And it always know which one to bite. And that's the monkey. And unfortunately it bitten so many of these cheeky people. Well, yeah, but so now we can't keep it in the monastery. So he told the second monk to go and take the monkey to a nature reserve. And that's where they took it. And it was like a nature reserve. It was actually on an island, so in the middle of a lake, which was, uh, protected. So they let the monkey go. The monkey never wanted to go. You could see it was really depressed all day. And I'd let him know right away. And one week later this month, Snow's got his meditation together, got psychic powers, realized that the monkey was not going to survive, and it was very, very lonely and very upset. So setting the second one to go back to the island and get the monkey back. There's this big, huge nature reserve. How do you find the monkey? What he did, he went in there and he just called out. And one more. One minute. That's all it took. And this monkey came flying through the trees and straight into this monk's house and sort of gave him a big hug. And so they took you back to the monastery. On the boat on the way back, the monkey bit the muck. Only not very hard. But just to say, don't do that again. And so he spent the rest of his life in the monastery. But again, the monkey was always very protective. And so one day he actually chased the track because we're making a noise outside the monastery. And unfortunately, he got got killed. Got run over by the truck. But what happened next? When that monkey died, there was he told what happened because he saw it in his meditation. He saw the stream of consciousness from that monkey go off into the village. There was a woman who was pregnant. He saw that monkey enter that woman's womb. A few months later, her baby was born. Her son. Who was uncommonly hairy. He was a monkey, but he made it to being a human being. And that's a true story. And of course, you know, the monks, like, you know, like myself or, you know, I tend to he's the one who told me that story that monks, you know, we can't keep good stories to ourselves. Tell everybody. So I'm sure that's gone all around the village. And we really felt very sorry for that young boy, because when he goes to school and someone says, you're a little monkey, it's actually true. It was a monkey in his past life. So any of you who liked bananas, that may have been you. I. But. But the point said so. These are the evidence of actually rebirth. And the evidence is out there. And we have inclinations which actually go from live to life. I already mentioned that Roy had an inclination he was a comedian before he became a comedian in his next life, maybe not quite as famous. It's credible, just our inclinations. If we're doctors or nurses, we tend to go to those fields again. This is how we actually take our karma from time to time. That lady who was, uh, uh, that, uh, daughter of Trevor and, uh, Sydney, she was a very big businesswoman before. She's a big businesswoman now. When? Chief was very young. He told me that they went past his sign on the side of the tollway. It was an advertisement by the New South Wales government about some sort of tax. This little girl had you two years of age. I asked daddy, what does the word tax mean? And daddy tried to explain to a two year old what it means, what the concept of taxes. And he said, no, darling, when you get any pocket money, you have to give some to the government. And, she said, a two year old, when I get any money, daddy, I'm giving nothing to no government money. Because as a businesswoman, she hated paying a taxes. In the previous life, she was well known for it. That inclination carried on into this life. So some of the inclinations you have, some of your talents, some of your likes, preferences, where did they come from? Are they the same as your mothers or fathers? Isn't it obvious you were born before? For those of you who want even more direct proof. This is why we teach meditation. And I've said this in my meditation retreat. Sometimes it goes so deep in your meditation you can recall your past lives. And I love to teach people just to give them direct evidence of what actually happens. If you can't actually get those direct memories of your previous life release, you can understand how the whole process works. You know, the process of dying. You should do. You've done it many times before. It's very similar to actually what happens in deep meditation. Your body is being dropped away. Your five senses are seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting. Touching her turning off. That's exactly what we do in meditation. We let go of our body. We allow sight, smell. So sight, hearing, smell, taste, touch, physical body to completely disappear. So the mind becomes manifest. Many of you haven't experienced that yourself. You've heard me talk about it. I read it in my books. Let me talk all about limiters. This beautiful light which appears in the mind when all the five senses have been quelled. Where you can't hear anything, see anything. You can't even feel anything in your body anymore. The five senses are completely stopped. That's when you get these limiters, these lights arising in your mind. Now, what happens when people have out of the body experiences floating towards the light? Same thing happens in death as you do in meditation. And if you can get that nearer to coming up in meditation, that's the light is called a limiter. If you can experience that many, many times, you'll get the understanding that that's when you've got your body is completely fallen away, have no $0.05 activity at all. You understand what it's like to die. You're preparing, training, practicing. And that's what will happen to you when you pass away. And when you understand this, you can actually feel you understand that this is actually what happens when you go into those realms of mind. You know, they're completely independent of the body. The body can die and that minor stream of consciousness will carry on. It has to. You can see it. It's just obvious. The mind will continue and that mind will seek its next rebirth. According to one, it's common to according to his craving desires where you want to go. Sometimes people actually ask me, can you actually get as a human being, get reborn as an animal? Of course you can if you really want to. Many people come up to me and told me that in the next life, they want to be reborn as a cat or a dog, simply because they don't want to go to work on a Monday morning ever again. They want to get fed wonderful food without having to cook it. They want to spend all day sleeping by the fire. So people like that, you're going to get reborn as an old cat. A little dog will make sure you get reborn as a cat, or a dog in a good home and a Buddhist monastery. Please don't get reborn as a cat or a dog outside a Chinese restaurant. 11s I think that's a bit of a anyway. Okay. So you can get both up and down in in in the battery connection. But they once you got the evidence and you've sorted out for yourself these things are true. Now imagine the consequences of that. And the consequences gives a whole different idea to one's ethics and to this little time we have in this little life we call me. You realize this is much more to life than this wonderful existence of, you know, 70, 80 years or ten years or 50 years. People who remember their past lives. It gives a completely different idea of what they're doing now. Why try and become wealthy? Why try to become famous? Why try and do all these stupid things when they know they've been there? They've done that, and that doesn't give them any real happiness anymore. Sometimes the people have to keep doing it again and again and again because they forget the lessons. None of history. They forget the lessons of their past lives. Because a lot of times we become wealthy or famous at the expense of others, are the expense of other people's well-being and happiness at the expense of our children and family, the expense of love and compassion. Once, I'd say one has a full picture of what life is all about. Of many, many lives. That completely different ethics starts to take place. That's where the law of karma becomes very evident as the most important way of guiding your life. Doesn't matter how long you live. The important part is how you live. How it is skiing in Singapore. People asking me all these questions about terrorism. What's the Buddhist response to terrorism? I say pacifism. We don't sort of have wars with anybody. And we take the high moral stand. And even if we get blown up, I'd rather get blown up. Bioterrorist spawn. Because there's only one life. There's only a little death. You get really bored again. It's not a big thing. It's much better to actually to hold up your principles of tolerance and peace, of non-violence, of non reaction. When we have the idea women and children are getting killed. Young people. When life and death become the paramount. Then our governments react to terrorism. They blow up a few people as if that's the most important thing, that they've invaded something sacred. They destroyed something which we're not going to allow them ever to destroy again. Life. It's good to try and preserve life. Human life is a very precious one. But there are other things more precious than a human life. The quality of life, the karma. That's far more precious. That's why people like Gandhi could actually say, I can see a thousand reasons to give my life for a cause, but I can't see one reason to take the life of another person. You can only say such things if you understand the truth of reincarnation. Otherwise, your one life is too important that your life takes precedence. Your life becomes sacred, inviolable. The most important thing in the world. When you have rebirth. Why do we try and keep people alive for such a long time when they have no quality of life at all? Wouldn't it be easier, better, even more ethical, to let them go off into a new life? Why keep your old bomb of a car? When you can get a new car. Almost immediately. Trade in. With nothing to pay. When you actually look at it that way. Some of the things we do in our society become really ridiculous. Some of the ways we look at life. I always say that if we believe in rebirth, we take much better care of our old people. The reasons why governments do not put many resources into the elderly because they think it's a waste of time. They're going to die anyway. Well our old people could not do to our society is not an investment for our future. Imagine if our governments, the people who make these decisions on where the tax money goes. Realize that those old people will be reborn as our children. But there is an investment in the future for looking after the elderly and give them a quality of life. Then wouldn't we mean we do put more money into looking after? Our seniors and our elderly people. I often say one of the great reasons we have trouble with our children. Why children never do what we ask them. Why children crave so much problems in our world. It's just that old people getting their own back for us, not looking after them in their previous life. But. And that's what they're doing. And that's why they're writing all this graffiti. They're upset at us because they weren't treated right before, and they come back with this negativity or this resentment, even revenge. Perhaps that's why. Perhaps why, if we did look after our parents or grandparents, the old people in the old people's home make them into beautiful places, put the resources in them. These are going to be young people in the future. Governments, even as we're willing to sacrifice everybody for everything for children. Could you say the future is with our youths? In Buddhism, we say the future is with our old people. Now how could they see a different way of looking at things? The idea of rebirth reincarnation actually gives you a completely different worldview. And it means we're not so attached to this one body of ours. Sometimes we're so attached to this body and this life, we get ourselves really screwed up inside our heads. As sometimes, you know, you may have an accident. You made blues part of this body so it doesn't matter. You get another part, another time. And it may be born ugly. Especially ladies are ugly. I never get one chance at a life. I'm born. I can never get a sort of a good husband. Doesn't matter. You are ugly before. Next time you'll be beautiful. Next time you'll be a supermodel. Next time you'll be. Goodness knows what else. So isn't it marvelous when we see. No, we've got another chance. This one. Life is not all we've got. It's not so vitally important. I get what I've got. This is my only chance at it. I've got to get it. No wonder people get depressed. When we don't make out, we don't become the person. We think that's it. We've blown our chances. We can't do it anymore. Those people have middle aged crisis. You think life has passed you by. Your opportunities are no longer. It's gone. All your hopes and dreams are no longer realizable. When they make it more serene, but easy on you to know that you've got another chance next time you really want it. To know there is no such thing as absolute failure. We can always take the exam again if we really want to. Who got another chance? A second chance or third chance of fourth chance of any chance. You know, wonderful to tell people. When I've lost a loved one, had a funeral service and tell them not just because I want to make them feel good. Sometimes people do that, you know, priests, monks. We just say things just to make them happy. But it's without any honesty. I must admit that when I. My father's funeral, the one thing which I was upset about, not my actual father dying, I was very a piece with that, as I've said many times here and in other talks. But the one thing which really upset me in my father's funeral had this priest standing up there saying, oh, my father is such a good man. He was such a kind person. So what baloney. That man, that priest never even knew my father. My father wouldn't go near a church. That priest had good intentions because he wanted to say nice things, not to upset me, but because he wasn't being honest. He did upset me. I would prefer honesty. And so the funeral service. I try to be honest. And that's one of the only things I can actually say at a funeral because of Covid, because of attachment and craving. Very often you do see each other again because you want to. Because you need to. That's why I cannot. You say if you lost the a son or daughter, chances are they are going to come back again. Not. Maybe it's your son or daughter because we actually change our relationships in families. People who remember past lives know that you may be a sister this life. Last time you were sort of a father. Lost. You changed genders as well. Now you understand why some people actually were born in a male body, but they feel they're female. And sometimes people say that some deviancy or some sort of psychological problem is not. This is karma from the past. There was like a woman in a previous life. There had been born in a in a male body, some of them still attached to being a woman. Please be kind and compassionate, understanding what they're going through. It comes the other way around as well. A man, a previous life gets reborn as a woman and they feel inside they've got a woman's body, but they feel male. This isn't that and give a really good understanding where that's coming from. The people could accept that we'd be much kinder and compassionate, more compassionate to same sex marriages. Sometimes because we think of one particular life, we've become very, very narrow minded and that hurts many people. And as you create so much suffering in the world. So that's why then I find it's a very important thing, this idea of reincarnation. And it means you're not so afraid of death anymore. You mean your own deaths? We're all going to die. Yes. Everyone says that. We don't like to hear it. We don't like to see death. When anyone dies, we say, oh, isn't that sad? Why is it sad? That's why I'm really rebellious. Someone says, oh, somebody died. Oh, isn't it a shame? Why is it a shame? I think they're old, they're sick, they're worn out. They're gonna get another body. There's no wonderful thing. We've just actually got a new car for our monastery because our last one was crashed. It died at a young age. I want to hear that. Now we've got a new one. Isn't that wonderful thing to have? So a new car is just being reincarnated. Category. And the reason I say bad jokes like this is because I probably did the same in my previous life. Really. The point is that if we have an idea of reincarnation, we don't get so upset when somebody dies. They're just making a transition, that's all. It's not the end of the world when somebody dies. So that way our funerals can be actually more a celebration of a life. And this time, when somebody graduates from school, we have a big celebration down in Watteau or down the southwest somewhere where they finished the school. Now they go to another stage of their life. Right now they've actually finished this human life. Now they maybe have another stage of their life, maybe come back again. But. There's no cause for celebration. Why on earth do we cry? Is because in our heads we've got this idea. This is the only life. We've been brainwashed by Western society to think we have one life and that's it. We're materialist. We think the body is a be all and end all. We just actually pay no attention to people like Professor Pin than normal. Who says no consciousness survives? Death is something different than the brain and the body. Because the brain is not working, the body is stopped. The consciousness is there, provable. Show us how rebirth happens. Reincarnation is. I don't know if I've convinced you, but just imagine I have convinced her. Imagine what it would be like to know that this is not your first life. Blue won't be your last life. Imagine how that changes the way you look at things. One. Life is not so important. Growing old is not so scary. Seeing other people die is no big deal. What becomes most important. Because actually, how you're spending this day. When you go to sleep tonight, most of you will wake up in the morning. You have another day and another day. Any mistakes in this day? You can always have a chance to redeem them in the next day. It means this day becomes very important and vital for you. But it doesn't mean you get so upset. His softens the successes and failures in life. It doesn't make them just so huge and troublesome. Depression, anxiety. Those things will be so lessened if we believed in rebirth. One of the problems that we have anxiety complex in our life, depressions here and the point of suicides. I say it's because we think there's only one life. We want to get rid of it. Only one life is get it over and done with. Quit. If you had to come back again. What's the point of killing yourself? You have to come back again. Do the same old thing. Doesn't make any sense anymore. So much of depression and anxiety is fierce. All these problems which are. Causing so much suffering in our modern world. Many of those would be just ease. If we could understand and look at the world through the ideal of many lives. That way we're seeing things in a different perspective. It happened to this a true perspective. Something which the Buddha taught. Remembering his whole life. His past lives. Not his past lives as a human being, but past lives in other world cycles as well. Understanding that even as universe gets recycled. Course reborn. Reincarnated if you wish. In Buddhism. There are so many, many world cycles. Planet Earth would eventually pass away and die. Be careful if we don't make it such a big deal. All those disaster movies which I've been reading about in the papers. It's big deal. Okay, just so New York gets get us all wiped out by tornadoes or whatever it is. So what if people build another sort of city, another universe somewhere else? Few hundred thousand million years in the future? Oh, goes round the cycles of existence, this huge span of time which Buddhism embraces from the very beginning. Not changing these things to suit modern ideas, but right from the beginning, Buddhism thought this. You know why? Because it's a basic truth and underlying truth which never changes. People got too much energy for it to suddenly snuff out at the time of their death. Now energy will seek new places, new places to assert itself. New places to explore the world. New places. To experience. You can feel that your life force. Always going out. Going on. Traveling on. Seeking more things. More places. When you die, you're not finished yet. Because you're not finished. You will go for another birth, another place, another life. As you will always do until you find that you are finished. This is what Harry Potter means. And some of you, if you don't remember your past lives, at least you can understand. Maybe get a feel for the underlying truth of this. The evidence is out there. The evidence is also in here. And if we can take this on board, he will give us a new ethics for our life a much kinder, compassionate, softer ethics. Less extreme. How can we hate anybody, even somebody like us? Bin laden? How can we hate them? We could have been their brother. They could have been our mother in a previous lives. They made a mistake in this one. We can give them another chance in the next. So what? They've taken the lives of our brothers and sisters, and all they've taken is their body, not their lives. You see how this softens makes us more compassionate so we don't get so hurt by things like death and sickness. What is death anyway? Just the death of a body. That's all. There's more to life than bodies. No one knows. We pass all the connection. Then you know what I'm talking about. And then you know a different way of looking at life. I'm more peaceful and more compassionate and more forgiving. We can forgive. Because there's more time for forgiveness. His many lives, not just one. So there is a little talk about rebirth, reincarnation, whatever you wish to call it, and what happens and how it happens and how it can change our world. It is a different way of looking at a different way of caring. So thank you very much for listening. Has anyone got any questions? Please ask him now. Otherwise you have to wait till your next lie. Yes. Yeah. Good. Okay. Remember? Um. Looking at a TV documentary done some years ago called Reincarnation Experiments, when some lady was being hypnotized and one in particular, under hypnosis, could speak perfect French without any accent. And most to put it on the TV. And actually, I could speak French when I was young and it was excellent French, and they test it out with other people. You know, it's a French speakers, native French speakers, perfect, accurate French. Because she could only speak under hypnosis. She never learned French in her life. Never been out of Australia before. It was fascinating that she was remembering a past life as a French aristocrat 30 years ago. Sometimes with those memories which sometimes we can't access in our normal consciousness. Sometimes we need hypnosis or we need meditation. Or in your case, sleep. To actually to take down those barriers which block her memory from the past. Some of the most self-imposed barriers. But if you can take down those barriers, said yes, sometimes you can recall traces of that past. Sometimes people can talk in line with his. I never looked. I saw that on that documentary. I think the documentary is actually even in the library. You put it in there some time ago. Perhaps that's you. The interesting thing is actually to get someone to to take you while you were asleep. We're not to use as blackmail. I mean, what are you to find out? Because you do. Find out what you say. Find out what language it is and see if you can find out any details of that place at that time. Because fascinating that even if people have clear memories, sometimes they doubt too much I think. Was that really me? And then they go back to those places, and they found those people and those places actually existed. And one of those on that documentary, one which convinced me the most is for ladies I chose, and one was again a lady who'd never been out of Australia in her life. Check that out with the passport office. She remembered her previous life as a man. She was a woman in his life as a doctor in the town of Lagarde in Scotland. It's interesting because our local doctor in Byford is from Blairgowrie. And we told him that when he told me he was from black, I said, that's interesting. We showed him the movie. I had been in Scotland many, many times when I grew up. I never remember the town called Blairgowrie. Maybe Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen in the big cities, but this late in Australia never been there. She remembered the programme it was such a town in the 19th century. She remembered her name as a doctor, James Archibald Burns. Ferns is a common name James's, but actually Archibald is very uncommon to get the three names. Or in line as a doctor in that time. In buggery in Scotland only be one doctor there. The point was that if there was a doctor by that day at that time, they should be able to find out because there were records. So they went there. They went to the public library, hooked up the old records from that time. Doctor James Archibald Burns, Doctor James Archibald and doctor James Archibald Burns. Not once. Many, many times in the documents which they kept from that time. There was a doctor called James Archibald Pierce, her brother in Scotland at the time. This lady, hidden somewhere outside Sydney, remembered. Very, very convincing. So see who you were. See if you left a will. Be worth a lot of money there. Test it out. Another question in the back. Yeah. 17s Okay. You're asking sort of, uh, how does rebirth happen? Is the space between the space can it can be immediate. It can be after many days. It can be after many years before there's a rebirth. So there's no fixed rule. So yeah, I say that because, um, in Theravada Buddhism, which is what I'm supposed to be part of, but I keep arguing that no matter what part of Buddhism you're part of, you can argue with the whole lot. And I don't mind arguing with one of some of these senior specialists. Would I come back so that. No, no space between rebirth? I say, yes, there is. I said, no, there isn't. And we have big arguments. There is space between rebirths. So this is just an old argument for many hundreds of years ago, which sometimes monks, but it just doesn't make any difference. It was such a small argument, but we still argue about these things anyway. Yes, there is, but the only way that could actually happen the person dies and they get reborn as a two year old is as if they dislodge. The existing stream of consciousness in that two year old kid. That two year old kid has to have some stream of consciousness fitness on being in there for those two years to survive that type. And they can actually almost like, possess that person and kick the original stream of consciousness out. For example, is this this very weird case? But a true case happened in Thailand, which actually shows you what can happen. There was a man died in a village now maybe 40, 45 years of age. Not that old. Remember many years ago in Thailand, medicine was not that advanced, actually, let alone Thailand. When I was visiting my mother. It was a case in some hospital. I think it was in Cardiff. They'd actually taken a patient down to the morgue, and before they put him in the freezer, the patient woke up again. Even the doctors now, only 5 or 6 years ago, could misdiagnose a death. They thought they were dead. But no, they weren't. They were not so deep coma and they woke up just in time. You imagine what that did to the people working in the morgue. Frightened stiff. But they thought this person was dead. Tesla was dead. So I left him there and started arranging for the funeral. A few hours later, in a neighboring village. Another person died. The first person who died, then woke up. And I thought, oh, they must be diagnosed. The death. The strange thing was, when he woke up with the early person who died. He was speaking in a strange tone of voice. He could not recognize his surroundings. It soon became very apparent he'd woke up a different person. He was a person. The second village. The one who died just afterwards. To one who died afterwards. Stream of consciousness had gone actually in to the body. For this statement. So there you were, sort of. He had a wife. He had two children. The wife could recognize his body but could not recognize his character. And in the end he actually went back to his other wife, the wife who he thought was his wife. If another wife had a husband who character she recognized, but within a completely different body. And he went to live with her. Strange story, but true. As if you've got reincarnated. Not in a new vehicle, but you got a second hand car instead. Already been used for a few years. Not to be recommended. In that particular case, I'm not sure the case you're talking about, but that can happen. That two year old either dies or that new consciousness kicks in or whatever. Can have a very, very rare. The answer. The question. I know that there was this film apparently called, I think, The Little Buddha or something, where there was supposed to be a real carnation of, uh, into three parts, as if like the stream of consciousness split up and had like three reincarnations from one person. And that's completely sort of that's just Hollywood. That's ludicrous. It can never happen in films. May be, but just know it's a stream of consciousness is like singular as a series, you kind of split up into many people. There's another question here. Yes. Yeah. Okay. Asking you, do people like science? They become who? Who enlightened? Do they get reborn again? Is there any way to get out of the cycle of rebirth? This is the whole point of the Buddhist teachings having recognized rebirth, reincarnation, and to see just how long that goes on. Just not once, not a thousand times, the Buddha came along and said that you have cried more tears through all the times you've been incarnated to know waters in all the oceans in the world. You know when your girlfriend has gone off with your best friend, or when you've failed to examinations, or when a loved one has died. There'd be more bones from you than the great Himalayan mountains. As a slave to the extent of rebirth. It's not just once or ten times thousand times. The uncountable times. So, have you had enough? You. Now the point is that there are stages of enlightenment. The first days of the night when you actually really penetrate these things, not through thought or belief, but to experience in deep meditation, scoping a screen winner actually see what's going on. Just like in the matrix ATC was happening. And then you've only got the most several lifetimes left. 40 and 91 is the last lifetime. There's no more rebirth out of the cycle. So it depends on what stage of enlightenment you are. Those of you who want to keep being report, you can if you want. Those of you had enough. There's a way out. And this is why we talk about the party for parties. If you want out, there is a pass. Does that answer your question? Yes, Lance. Last question. Otherwise, we know we'd all be dead by the end of the trial. And it's time to lock the gun. Hey. Okay. Where does the stream of consciousness go? If there's a delay between rebirth, it goes into fixable night ghost films. Many ghosts are those beings who are just as well waiting for a rebirth, leaving your body. And you stay in that astral ghost mind made body. Which is why, when people can see those things, and sometimes some of the ghost people see a people who have been dead for many years, sometimes hundreds of years. Who still don't realize they're dead. You can call it a parrot if you like, but it's not really a good birth as such. It's like almost like an intermediate birth. And sometimes it's that case. They're not in that state for very long. And so that's why sometimes people call it like a space between like a proper berth. Sometimes it's like you're between jobs and when you're between jobs and when you come and help with the Buddhist side, it's not really a proper job, but you know, you're doing something. And. So, you know, people actually say in between jobs. I should really say that is a proper job. It's actually the only proper job working at the society. And so sometimes it's just terminology there. That's actually what we really mean by the the between states. We haven't. It's not the time to take a new birth yet, but you're still hanging around a lot of time, especially to see loved ones you still got business to do. Notes will sometimes burn out karma, but a lot of times it's I'm talking about the people who already stay a short time in that stay to actually go and see their loved ones to make sure everything's okay. Most people who see ghosts, I go to people who just died. Oh yeah, still lots of calm to burn out, but at that particular time most ghost which people see it is fresh ghosts. People just died. I just came to say hello. So, like, if I die, come and say Lawrence. Goodbye. Any more questions before I go? And. I go out of this business. Now that each. The. So this is actually what we do. And let's see, a lot of times people see ghosts. They see their loved ones and just come to say goodbye. Very happy because we live in other parts of the world now, so often happens not in one case, many cases, someone in relations or in England, they come and see you when they die just because they're dead over there. And to say, to say, you know, bye bye. I'm just dead. Just say hello. Goodbye. I don't know, there might be a United States or somewhere. You die over here and you've got someone in the United States to go and say goodbye to. Disappear there and they see you and they feel so wonderful. They see you before you go. It's actually very beautiful, those ghost stories. It is so touching. You know, my mother lives in London. Would be great if she died and come say goodbye. It was really nice to see you one last time. I really respect what you've done. And I love you very much. And. And say goodbye. Isn't that beautiful? So I said, what can we do? Just make sure everything is set up before they go off. And that's how they stay at an intermediate level for a while. Just to finish up my anti-business. Okay. No face. I got it. Sometimes. Yes. Because again, just like the gentleman over there said, sometimes in the dream, sometimes your barriers of your mind are down, and sometimes she can recall people in those dreams. However, the sometimes the dreams are not a real contact. Sometimes they are imaginary, sometimes they are real. And that's why it's so difficult actually to say through dreams, whether they're real or not. Usually just as a result of some of that dream is one very vivid and keeps repeating itself. Same dream again and again. Chances are it is real. But if it's just a one off and it's not all that vivid, there may be. It could be just the imagination. From talking about people who see these things with their eyes open. Okay, that's enough for tonight. You'd have to wait for your next life to hear more about reincarnation. But wait. Are you a ghost? If you die, come and tell me. Say I tell. Bravo. You were so right. So right. So let me. And if I may go. So I'm going to come and hold you all and say, I told you so. I told you, sir. But I can't pick next year. Those of you who don't have to rush off about three times the Buddhism and sang, and then we can go and have.

Other Episodes