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Old 11-22-2017, 09:29 PM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Legion777 View Post
Reincarnation is a basic principle of Judaism (although the Jewish concept is a little different than mainstream)
The Rabbi known as Jesus, was a Jew who belonged to the Essenes. Reincarnation is also a basic principle of Essene belief.
Though Jesus may have been influenced by the Essenes, he did not "belong" to them as you say (though it's possible John the Baptist did). The most likely influence was their asceticism and apocalyptic writings rather than their belief in reincarnation.

During the intertestamental period (roughly 100BC - 100AD) there were a lot of ideas floating around Judaism; the Pharisees believed in an afterlife and resurrection, the Sadducees did not believe in either, the Essenes were ascetics who looked forward to the end times. They seemed to have been influenced by the gnosticism that was going around at the time - seeing souls as "trapped" in their bodies. There were Jewish, Christian, and pagan versions of gnosticism floating around.

There is absolutely nothing in the non-gnostic sayings of Jesus that indicate he had any belief in reincarnation, or any of the other things gnostics believed. And (with the exception of portions of the Gospel of Thomas) the provenance of most of these gnostic alternative gospels is highly suspect. For starters, the gnostics saw creation as the work of a false and possibly insane demigod (the demiurge), and through secret knowledge the chosen could escape the evil world and their evil bodies and ascend to the pleroma. This often involved the recitation of secret formulas. There's no indication that Jesus believed any of this.

The apostle Paul in fact was fighting in his letters against the gnostic beliefs that were corrupting the belief of the churches within 30 years of Christ's death. The gnostics were taking his writings for their own purposes and twisting their meaning. It was typical in those days that gnostics would come into a church and recite the Creed, but they interpreted it in their own ways based on what they thought was their "secret" knowledge (gnosis). They were an elite who saw themselves as containing the spark of divinity, and saw everyone else as spiritually dead. Nice people, huh.

Quote:
Reincarnation was a basic tenet of Christian doctrine until it was declared anathema by the churches supreme authority, the immoral Emperor Justinian (His wife, who was a former prostitute to the rich, wanted him deified when he died)
Not true. The emperor was never the "supreme authority" in religious matters, and reincarnation was NEVER a "basic tenet of Christian doctrine". The relationship between the patriarch of Constantinople and the emperor was always complex; patriarch St. John Chrysostom for example was always taking the side of the poor, calling the empire to task, and was exiled twice as a consequence. Justinian called a council to attempt to heal the monophysite controversy, but failed because most of the hierarchs wanted nothing to do with his attempts - something which vexed and surprised Justinian. I refer you to volume 1 of John Julius Norwich's three-volume history of Byzantium, a secular account of the history of the Eastern Empire. Theodora was a courtesan, but most of the scandalous gossip about her was a bit over the top, the result of a smear campaign by one Procopius, who despised both Theodora and Justinian.

At risk in these controversies was the understanding of the true nature of God, Christ, and the Trinity and the danger to our understanding posed by these heresies. That's the reason the ecumenical councils were called: to address the errors that were creeping in against what followers of the Way had always believed.

You need to understand that people in the street were passionate about theology in those days; there were two quasi-political parties, the Greens and Blues, who started as groups of horse race fans and who each had their own theological positions. One observer reported that during an ecumenical council you could go into a bakery and the baker would discuss the nature of the Trinity with you (or words to that effect, I don't have the exact quote at hand). The air was full of theology in those days, and it wasn't just the elite who were aware of what was going on.

And the council he called was about reconciling monophysitism with Orthodox theology for political as well as theological reasons, and had nothing to do with reincarnation. if you have scholarly evidence what I've said was not the case (and not just something from a New Age writer), I'd like to see references.

Quote:
According to Quora "The fact is that Zoroastrianism teaches a unique form of reincarnation very similar to the ancient Germanic tribes & different from the typical Eastern types."
You do realize Quora is just a place where people post questions and any Joe Schmoe off the street can answer them even if the answer is complete BS? Here is a Zoroastrian site that clearly says Zoroastrians do NOT believe in reincarnation:

http://www.avesta.org/zfaq.html

Quote:
The concept of reincarnation is foreign to Zoroastrianism. According to Dastur Firoze M. Kotwal, the current head priest of the Wadia fire temple, "No reincarnation as far as our religion is concerned, because if there is reincarnation, then there cannot be the idea of resurrection, you see. So these doctrines go counter to one another. Of course, there is a tendency for bringing in reincarnation from Hindu philosophies or something, because we are living among the Hindus. But no, this is all a recent development, just to placate the Hindus or something like that. But you must be faithful to our religion, because when you wish to introduce something in our religion that is foreign, then there is danger of all other doctrines going topsy-turvey."
Also, according to J. W. Sanjana,

"Faith in this dogma [i.e. reincarnation] is so incompatible with the letter and spirit of traditional Zoroastrianism that it can be said without exaggeration, and with the most perfect reason and justice, that a man who believes in reincarnation is no true Zoroastrian." (Cited in Boyce, 1984, pg 157.)

Last edited by Vasily; 11-22-2017 at 09:39 PM..
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Old 12-19-2017, 07:44 AM
 
95 posts, read 50,629 times
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No. I'm not sure why it is so hard for people accept that there is a start to our lives and there is an end. No more no less. All you touch and all you see is all your life will ever be. Seems simple enough but people will not accept this fact and who knows if they ever will. Everything has a starting point and an ending point. Every plant, critter, human, a burning cig, a movie, a thought process. Just because we die doesn't make our plight terrible. Celebrate this chance to be alive and breathing and take comfort knowing that someday we will end.
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Old 12-19-2017, 08:40 AM
 
612 posts, read 330,647 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foster913 View Post
Seems simple enough but people will not accept this fact
Probably because it's not necessarily a fact.


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Old 12-19-2017, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
4,773 posts, read 6,934,160 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by foster913 View Post
No. I'm not sure why it is so hard for people accept that there is a start to our lives and there is an end. No more no less. All you touch and all you see is all your life will ever be. Seems simple enough but people will not accept this fact and who knows if they ever will. Everything has a starting point and an ending point. Every plant, critter, human, a burning cig, a movie, a thought process. Just because we die doesn't make our plight terrible. Celebrate this chance to be alive and breathing and take comfort knowing that someday we will end.
In terms of the human existence, you are absolutely correct, however, our souls live for eternity.

There is no ending to the soul.
There was a beginning, but no end.

Bob.
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Old 12-19-2017, 10:04 PM
 
Location: PRC
2,710 posts, read 2,986,521 times
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As far as reincarnation is concerned, I think we need to look for evidence in non-religious areas where people do not come from a viewpoint but are relatively un-biased.

I always think the Bob Monroe books are a good starting point as he was a scientificly-minded person and had no strong religious beliefs when his experiences began. Look up the Monroe Institute and the Bob Monroe books - the first one being "Journeys out of the Body".
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Old 12-24-2017, 07:02 AM
 
Location: Concord NC
1,684 posts, read 920,256 times
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The concept of reincarnation might be another way our minds - which are hard-wired against death (in most cases) - avoid confronting the thought of our own mortality. If one convinced himself early in life that this life was the only "shot" he had at existence, would he live his life differently than if he believed there was a "do-over"/reward/re-learning waiting? Would the motivations for his actions - now based on acute rather than deferred consequences drive him toward different acts and attitudes towards others and towards himself? There seems to be plenty of "Unexplained Mysteries" in this world and life-time to consider and appreciate.
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Old 12-24-2017, 09:19 AM
 
612 posts, read 330,647 times
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Yeah, I think it depends on the individual. Some find the idea that this is
not all there is pretty scary, so they cling to the idea that death is final with
the same tenacity that another will cling to the idea of immortality.

For me, it depends on what kind of day I’m having.


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Old 12-24-2017, 02:14 PM
 
9,291 posts, read 7,305,429 times
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What would be the point?
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Old 12-24-2017, 06:33 PM
 
612 posts, read 330,647 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charlygal View Post
What would be the point?
Whatever the point was the first time around, I would think.


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Old 12-30-2017, 02:58 PM
 
Location: North West Arkansas (zone 6b)
2,486 posts, read 1,713,158 times
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A fortune teller once told my wife that our souls are recycled and that everyone in our circle were together in another life but under different relationships to each other.

Sometime after her telling, I saw an episode of the X-Files which seemed to tell a similar story (S4 E5 - The Field where I died )
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