Some evidence of past lives is considered astounding and legitimate proof of reincarnation. These documented stories with verified details present compelling evidence of reincarnation.
Children's Verifiable Accounts of Other People's Lives
Children may seem like the most unlikely source for proof of reincarnation. However, there are documented cases of children claiming they were someone else in a previous life. These children give specific details, names, towns, and other pertinent information that is verifiable. Some of these children claim to have been one of their ancestors, such as a grandfather who died before they were born.
In fact, research into children's past life memories offers some of the most substantial proof of reincarnation. A number of experts have looked into these claims. The first scientist to commit his research to investigating reincarnation claims of children was Dr. Ian Stevenson (1918-2007). Dr. Stevenson's 50 years of research resulted in over 3,000 cases of what he concluded were actual cases of past life recalls. Considered one of the world's foremost reincarnation researchers, Dr. Stevenson (medical and psychology degrees) created the Division of Perceptual Studies (DOPS). This research unit of the Department of Psychiatric Medicine at the University of Virginia continues the research he began.
Using scientific methods, Dr. Stevenson legitimized his findings within the scientific community and did more to advance the study and understanding of reincarnation than any other researcher in the field. His findings showed that past life recalls are very common for children between the ages of two and five. He discovered that by the age of seven, most children no longer have past life recalls. More astounding, his research showed that with maturity, these same children tended to forget everything about those memories.
To conduct his research, Dr. Stevenson bypassed hypnosis regression and instead used investigative and documentation techniques. He traveled throughout Asia, Europe and North America, interviewing and documenting these cases. In his first book, Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation, Dr. Stevenson investigated 20 children with stories of previous lives. This fascinating book details his research and findings.
Following in Stevenson's footsteps and carrying on his work is Jim B. Tucker, MD, a University of Virgina Professor of Psychiatry. Dr. Tucker has written a few books about his research with children and past lives and shares a number of stories including the case of 4-year-old Ryan, who had dreams about his heart "exploding" and his death in Hollywood. After months of incidents, dreams, and other odd memories, the young boy identified his former life as an extra in an old Hollywood movie photo. Further research revealed that the details Ryan supplied of his previous life as a man named Martin Martyn were verified by Martyn's still-living daughter.
Birthmarks That Match to Injuries in Past lives
One of the more interesting and evidential aspects of claims by children are physical markings that match up with those of the deceased person. Birthmarks are often present in the exact location of a fatal wound. In other cases, an actual entry and exit wound in the form of a scar or birth defect are found that correlate to the wound of the deceased person.
One of Dr. Stevenson's cases described a young boy who recalled his name from his previous life and insisted his parents use that name. He also had an intense, unreasonable dislike for police and would toss rocks at them. When he was born, he had an odd mark underneath his chin that bled for several days and had to be stitched closed. He also had an unusual mark in the back of his head on the opposite side of the mark under his chin. It turned out that the boy's past life had been as an escaped prisoner who had a shootout with the police and ended his life by shooting himself with a rifle underneath his right chin. The exit wound was on the opposite side and in the back of his head. The man's wounds matched those of the boy. The prisoner died just days before the child was born.
Birth Defects Matching Past Life Accidents
Birth defects may also align with injuries sustained in a past life. Dr. Stevenson described a few of these cases in depth. In one, a Thai man remembered a past life when he was just a child and told how he'd been killed by a blow to the back of his head. The child claimed to be his deceased uncle, who it turned out had died from a heavy knife striking him in the back of the head. The child's right big toe was deformed and his uncle had nursed a long-time ulcer on his right big toe.
In another case, a girl was born with the lower part of her right leg missing. As a child, she told about her past life as a woman who fell on the train tracks and a train ran over her right leg, severing it. She knew her past life name and the information she gave was verified.
Emotional Attachments and Phobias
Some children exhibit a strong emotional attachment to other people, many times to complete strangers. The children are usually homesick for their former home and family. Some children recall and pine for their past life spouses and children who are still living. Phobias are sometimes present in those who suffered traumatic past life deaths. A fear of fire is common for someone who was a victim of death by fire. A phobia of drowning might be found in someone who drowned in a previous life.
One of Dr. Stevenson's cases was a baby girl who fought every time she was bathed, and at a few months old, she exhibited a phobia of buses. This strange combination was traced to another girl who had tried to avoid being hit by a bus and fell into flood waters and drowned.
Spontaneous Past Life Recall
In addition to children recalling past lives, many adults experience what is known as spontaneous past life recall. In such instances, the memory is triggered by the person visiting a new place, town, or doing something for the first time, such as driving a boat. The recall can be a mix of emotions, flashes of scenes, and/or a feeling of having been to a certain place before with a profound feeling of familiarity.
For example, Walter Semkiw, MD, MPH was told by a psychic that he was the reincarnation of U.S. President John Adams. The scientist found it amusing and shrugged it off. It was a decade later, when out of nowhere, an authoritative voice inside his head told him to read about the life of John Adams. He was shocked to discover his physical similarity to John Adams, but more importantly that he shared the same personality traits, likes, dislikes, and weakness. Over the course of his journey into reincarnation, Dr. Semkiw observed that, like him, people tend to hold on to similar mindsets and personality traits from one incarnation to another. He uses facial comparisons in his work along with these habits and personality traits in these matchings.
Dr. Semkiw's story is similar to that of Jeffrey Keene, who discovered his past life as Confederate General John B. Gordon. While on vacation with his wife in Maryland, Jeff visited the battlefield of Antietam. While there, he had a spontaneous past life recall of overwhelming emotions he couldn't rationalize. It was a pivotal moment in his life that led him to write a book about his journey into his past life. One of the most compelling moments for Jeff was when he saw the picture of General Gordon and stated he instantly recognized it since he shaved that same face every morning.
Examining the Evidence for Reincarnation
Research into reincarnation is ongoing, with many reputable scientists dedicating their lives to investigations. If you wish to explore the evidence of reincarnation, you need to be prepared to invest a great deal of time and, above all, keep an open mind.