Introduction to Books of Studies of Reincarnation in the West (Part 9): Where Reincarnation and Biology Intersect
[Note: In Eastern culture, the idea of reincarnation is familiar to people, and is generally accepted through stories and anecdotes being passed down from generation to generation. In many classic works from Chinese culture such as Journey to the West, the idea of reincarnation is taken for granted and does not need any explanation. In the West, the idea is not as widely accepted culturally; but a number of scientific studies have been performed on the subject and the results published. For the reader's interest and reference only, and not as an endorsement of any particular book, we would like to introduce the results of some of these scholars' research.]
Ian Stevenson, M.D., Where Reincarnation and Biology Intersect, Paeger Publishers, 1997.
Several polls showed that at least one in four modern Westerners believe in reincarnation and the trend is increasing. This is attributable to many scientists' and physicians' unremitting endeavors to research the phenomenon of reincarnation over the past half century. Professor Stevenson is commonly recognized for his outstanding work in this area. Since 1961, Dr. Stevenson has been tirelessly traveling around the world to collect, organize, and validate the reincarnation cases from different countries. He has collected 2600 cases in 40 years.
In 1961, Dr. Stevenson went to Sri Lanka and then Alaska to investigate three cases that related to birthmarks and congenital defects. Several years later, he had collected many cases of this kind and planned to publish a book about his research. He observed that there were an average of 15 birthmarks on every adult. In the past, other than some hereditary reasons, there was no satisfactory explanation for a particular birthmark on a particular part of a person's body. However, the principle of reincarnation and the conclusions presented in his book provide the only reasonable explanation for the "mystery."
Moreover, the author also pointed out the four unique characteristics of children who can remember their previous lives and the special phenomena that frequently accompany the birthmark and congenital defects. Some phenomena are regarded as common sense by reincarnation researchers, yet are regarded as unsolvable mysteries by modern scientists. These include phobias, strange habits, transsexual inclination, irrational loves or hates, as well as a child's unique behavior during play. These simple conclusions not only explain many common yet unexplainable phenomena in psychological terms, especially in child psychology, but also provide a brand-new methodology and shortcut for psychological research.