Sun Apr 18th, 2010 at 02:10:00 PM EST
Many moons ago, I wrote a diary on this blog from amidst my own spiritual journey and in which I explained the truth I had found in the idea of reincarnation, as it can be found in Eastern philosophies.
I found that reincarnation would explain injustice in this world or the unequal distribution of pain and suffering. Besides, ever-reincarnating souls would also provide an explanation for the rapid growth of our world population with the problems pertaining to it that are also a sign of biblical "end times".
I knew I wasn't the first to put forward such view and to associate it with Christianity.
I had tried to talk with other Christians about my views, not many, but they either did not react, were not interested or simply indifferent towards my findings. With no proof of the contrary, I felt confirmed in my newly found convictions and shared them here.
The ensuing debate revolved more around the existence or not of a god than my new discovery. I hadn't meant to proselytise this blog though the underpinning of my diary had been my faith in God.
Time has passed since, and my faith has been questioned, i.e. not my faith in God but my comforting views on reincarnation. For myself, it was surprising and particularly painful to learn that what I had believed to be true would finally be a misconception and not compatible with Christianity. I had asked earlier and found no criticism, mainly just indifference. Meanwhile, this wrong belief had become part of me, like my second skin.
It explained so wonderfully what I hadn't been able to understand or accept before about our suffering, and it acknowledged the reality of a belief prevalent in large parts of humanity. I felt judged by this criticism and through the arguments that stood against my convictions, also in the name of Hindus and others. Everything in me revolted against letting go of it.
This was an almost incredible experience, and I assume that I appeared almost ridiculous in it. I did not grow tired of asking, "Why? But why?" -
The idea of reincarnation fit so beautifully into what I wanted to believe in. It was almost too good to be true. But can anything be any good at all when we're not aware of what is True and what is Real? Can what others tell us to accept as true ever be the criterion? I believe that we need reference points that reach beyond our own (self) interests.
Eventually, I became aware of the mistake. I call it a mistake though its measure was not scientific evidence but the precepts of the Christian faith. I struggled but felt relieved because I dropped this distorted reality in my life.
This was the beginning of a larger process of transformation and change that I'm still undergoing . I'm peeling off onion layers one by one, or some outer force, God, is there that pushes me to continue the work begun. A friend of mine talked of `revolution'.
I also heard somebody say that from a Christian point of view, "sin" refers to a missed target. It has no substance in itself. It means that something is not the way it is supposed to be. Truth can correct this wrong and induce necessary change by which, little by little, our selves become purified and grow in the likeness of God. This sounds high-flying and easy but it is not.
I am still in the middle of this revolutionary process. My change of mind didn't end with dropping the idea of reincarnation. I am already in another painful but necessary change process and not sure where this is going to lead me. Letting go always comes with a loss of security and comfort. It is destabilising and scary. Everything may look chaotic around oneself when we're in the middle of it. We feel lost. The good thing to know is, that out of the chaos arises, a new order.
Out of the feeling of being totally lost, I wrote to a friend a couple of days ago, and she replied that it was amazing to see that the chaos was always producing order in the end. She had already seen this in my words - while I had not.
I sincerely hope that this diary won't stir any trouble. I simply felt the need to correct my earlier assumptions. I have not gone into detail to show why exactly I don't believe in reincarnation anymore since that earlier debate didn't revolve so much around this particular question, either but more around the existence of God. I have found explanations within the Christian faith. Should anybody be interested in those, I can get into more detail about them but I've discussed these questions already a few months ago, so would need some time to reply. Ultimately, though, it will remain a matter of faith.