Seasoned journeyer Frank Kepple, during his last days as Frank Kepple, was becoming more and more interested in going places that he was not sure he would return from.
The facts about Frank's disappearance or demise are not available to us, but possibly unrelatedly, he had grown increasingly interested in the one unworlding experience that Robert Monroe had reported which threatened Monroe's health. Apparently there was a depth or distance away from the physical that, as Frank repeatedly stated during his final days, gave you 20 to 60 minutes to get back to the physical or else you wouldn't be going back. Do not fear: getting to this state of unworlding cannot happen accidentally.
What this has to do with reincarnation I don't know, but it seems like interesting background for my next Frank Kepple gem of wisdom, which is another cryptic remark he kept making during his last days as Frank, which was this: within infinity, there are infinite versions of each of us.
Now, as we all know by now--and Frank also constantly reminded us of this too--time has no hold on infinity. Quite the opposite; while time or fourness is all about rules and restrictions, when it comes to what time can and cannot do, it's infinity that writes those rules. Being god, the universe, and infinity all wrapped into one seamless, borderless, limitless Whatever, awareness wordlessly trumps literally and absolutely everything, including its own overtones such as time.
Add to that the fact that many journeyers including Frank had experienced "other lives" when they were unworlding. We also know that Frank eventually denied the existence of reincarnation as a literal fact when he was near the end, calling it a misinterpretation of what was really going on. He kept saying that there are infinite versions of each of us due to the nature of infinity, and they are not past or future lives, they are simultaneous lives. But it's not clear at that point whether he meant that each separate person lives infinite versions of the same life, or whether each separate person has a separate life but the same soul. I opt for both: each person template creates infinite variations and one soul--infinity itself--projects infinite person templates. The person is not the awareness that animates it, which is why the person can seem to die while awareness lives on forever: the awareness that animates every person and every possible variation of each person is exactly the same.
Now for what I don't believe.
Reincarnation and its evil twin karma exist as ideas for approximately two reasons. 1. People who have near death experiences and other mystical experiences such as unworlding report the phenomenon of reincarnation as factual based on their experience, and 2. Religions report the phenomenon as factual based on dogma.
Item 2 is easily dealt with, but I won't waste a lot of science or logic on it. Dogma is essentially an opinion, so what's to disprove about it? I will use emotion and opinion to fight emotion and opinion.
Religious organizations require funding. Guilt is an emotion, an outgrowth of the primal emotion fear, and the reincarnation-karma partnership offers a solution; whether true or not, it does make that offer. People believe in reincarnation because it assuages the guilt which they don't otherwise try to control since the guilt was put in place by parents, and emotional attachments in the traditional cultures that spawned the old religions prevent people from questioning their parents' word. In contast, Americans live in a cynical world where you don't have to believe in anything and you put your elderly parents in warehouses for the dying instead of caring for them in your home, so questioning the religious beliefs of your parents is second nature by now in uncultured melting-pots like America.
Similarly, in traditional cultures, karma is presented as universal law, so to question it is to question the Creator. Americans once again have no experience with tradition, having grown up in front of televisions as economic units feeding the Machine of capitalism upon which America is founded. So, lacking religion to explain the existence of our natural guilty feelings, America came up with the New Age, and preachers took to the press.
As emotions go, guilt is an obsession, a compulsion dictator, and a self-feeding, self-maintaining, self-sustaining machine. So are all emotions, but at the same time, all emotions can be gotten under control. Tackling an emotion head on and taking one's power back from it is one way, but it isn't the way touted by any religion on earth, because religion requires funding. If you send the patient home cured, you've lost a customer. So you don't want a dogma which offers an achievable solution to karma. You want a belief in 10,000 lives. The priest class has to eat, so... keep 'em comin' in the door and send 'em home wanting more. That is financial security for the priest class.
People who write new age books are the priest class of the new age religion, which is based on the more profitable aspects of the old religions, because people want to be paid for writing books. This is a relatively new phenomenon, thus the term "new" age. In the fairly recent past, if you wanted to be paid for your opinion, you'd have to either preach it from the pulpit, serve it up with a sword, or put your opinion in a bottle and call it medicine so people had something to take home with them while you skedaddled to the next county. Nowadays you can work from home; that's even better! The advent of the personal computer and the internet made it easy for people like me who have an opinion to launch themselves into the ether as new age prophets, self-appointed and paid via Kindle or PayPal or YouTube. The internet is the ultimate platform for the time-honored system of mail-order: buying stuff from a guy with no face and possibly no physical address, and just hoping for the best because his ad appealed to you.
And what could be more appealing than a series of books saying exactly what people want to hear, the very bookly manifestation of the principle of reincarnation: ideas that won't go away.
Which is another bit of evidence that people use to promote reincarnation: the idea won't go away. I don't accept this as evidence. What I do accept is that the priest class needs to eat, so religion must be somehow sold, not given away. Taking advantage of the fact that emotion is what makes the world go around is not unique to the priest class or new age writers. No sane culture would accept capitalism, but we are not sane, we are animals and we thrive on taking from each other, grappling with the herd to gain status and eat better than the passive nerds on the fringe of the herd. New age writers take with great finesse and for the most part they are quite sincere in their beliefs. That's about as nice as I get with these folks because they foster so much misery and eternal wheelspinning by encouraging people to feel bad so they will come crawling back for the same answers in a new set of clothes, that is, the next book in the series. It's not malevolent, unless needing to eat is malevolent. Decide that for yourself when you choose which shark you will allow to eat you: the nice one or the mean one. They're both hungry, so the meat of you goes to a good cause either way.
I liked NDE experiencer "Ms. NDE's" YouTube lectures so much that I bought her book. In her videos, she soothingly rants on about how life is not a school and there is no such thing as karma and reincarnation is completely optional; in fact she "was told" (and that makes it true?) that she herself is finished reincarnating. Great, methinks, an NDE book that I might actually be able to read! But the harder I try to focus on it, the more I feel I am in church guzzling pre-digested swill. Every other word is capitalized and it's all karma-this, karma-that, evolve evolve oh Human Race, your Light Being resides inside of you, the universe evolveth as thou evolvest, blah blah blah blah. Ms. NDE, who confesses to having been a money grubbing lawyer before her brush with the infinite, had the good sense to get out of the professional rat-race of lying for a living and figured out, consciously or sub-consciously, how to stay home and create a more relaxed income at a more relaxed pace, doing what she does best, lying. And I don't mean to be ungentle; but she got my $10 for her kindle book by misrepresenting her opinions on YouTube in info-mercials purporting to be reports of experiences, so she can take my words any way she wants, because I don't pity liars.
This leads to the other reason we believe in reincarnation and its bedpartner in hell, karma, which is that people return from unworlding and near death experiences reporting reincarnation as fact. Good people, reliable people, nice people, people who are not lying as such. Even Ms. NDE is not lying as such, but being wrong by accident is similar to lying in some important ways. Since many purveyors of new age snake oil are not lying as such, we must try to identify what it is about these otherworldly experiences--experiences which they really have had--that causes its experiencers to become deluded. And why can I assume they are deluded? See part one above: if capitalism says it's so, it is not so, it is a fabrication for the purposes of advertising in a competitive market where one's product must appear and sound more appealing than some other person's product. And capitalism is selling us reincarnation in the form of thousands of books, so we can safely (not scientifically, just safely) assume that reincarnation is begging to be debunked just like the next brand of miracle soap that makes you look younger.
Reincarnation is a product, and guilt sells soap.
We must move on now to real experiences that seem to be the actual source of the rumor that the priest class draws on for evidence to back up its dogma. This monologue must move on, before my audience decides I'm just angry. Well, anger is not the point, I just don't like capitalism because it turns beautiful things like food, art, music and mystical experience into products that must be inflated with BS in order to sell more units. And yeah, I guess ruining food, art, music and mystical experience for a fast buck kinda pisses me off.
Be that as it may, people I like including Ms. NDE do come back from other worlds believing they have re-experienced reincarnations. This happened to me once: in a dream (non-lucid OBE) I lived the whole life of a man who eventually died outside a gathering-hall where he was not allowed inside because at the end of his life, his society had rejected him. I don't remember the experience in detail, I just vaguely recall vividly living his whole life and how discouraged and betrayed he felt when he died. I actually remember his enjoying these emotions, gobbling them up like candy. Does that mean I was him in some other life? I honestly don't have an opinion, based on being the person who had the experience. Part of me wants to believe in reincarnation for the same emotional reasons I've mentioned above. But sometimes I prefer logic.
So let me attack this as logically as I can.
Writer after writer says, "I saw this person when I was in an unworlded condition, merged with them, felt all their feelings, saw obvious connections with my current life, and now I believe 100% in reincarnation because I experienced it for myself." Similarly, NDE'rs tend to experience a life review, re-experience all the icky things they did which they feel guilty for from their victim's point-of-view, and if they have a good memory like Ms. NDE, they might even get to walk around in someone else's skin long enough to come away with a 100% belief in reincarnation, because they experienced it.
So I played football with my cousin when I was 10, that makes me a football player?
So I wrote a wee computer program while drinking too much coffee, that makes me a programmer?
So I was elected captain of my high school prayer meeting, that makes me a better Christian than the others, or a lifelong Christian, or a Christian at all? Dude, I was the worst Christian in the room, maybe that's why I was elected!
I am here to tell you that the universe as we know it is a vibratory phenomenon. As the new agers know only so well, this has been gospel for a long time. What they fail to do is to consult any vibratory science for halfway usable analogies. Can any new age preachers even explain what a vibration is?
I can. A vibration is a change from equilibrium which tends to propagate itself through a medium. Due to some natural tendency such as perhaps elasticity of the medium, when some disturbance triggers a change from equilibrium in one direction, the change itself produces its opposite phase change. In other words, if you bounce the ball, it bounces back. If you stretch a rubber band and release it, it snaps back. The energy that snaps back and hurts your finger is the energy that was originally used to stretch the rubber band to begin with. In a relatively loss-free situation like sound waves which travel very far and fast, a tweaked group of molecules rebounds back toward where it started, travels past equilibrium due to energy stored in its motion, and continues bouncing back-and-forth many times. Meanwhile, the back-and-forth motion (not the originally tweaked group of molecules but the phenomenon of vibration that passed through the group of molecules and tweaked them) keeps going at the speed of sound, tweaking group after group of molecules, reflects off of surfaces that are reflective, resounds within shaped chambers tuned to resonate at that frequency, changes directions, and eventually dissipates.
Pure awareness or infinity or Existence Itself is the fundamental of reality, but I doubt that the fundamental of reality is a vibration. Rather, it is the medium, the equilibrium that gets tweaked. Pure Awareness is disturbed by something (by awareness itself, no doubt) and vibration is twoness, that two-component thing we call duality. I proceed to posit a harmonic structure for my elements of reality, because vibrations do that, they form harmonic structures. And we get a progression up through higher harmonics; the new age lovers of progress and higher vibrations should eat that up, right?
Something else that vibrations do is to resonate when they reflect and get trapped within containers of certain suitable shapes that fit their natural frequency. For example if you have two violins set close to each other and tuned together, and you draw a bow across the D string of one violin, the D string on the other violin, untouched by bow or human hands, will vibrate in sympathy with the disturbed string. It does this because it is the perfect container for that vibration. The vibration fits with its length, tension and other traits comprising its "shape" as a resonator. It reflects the sound wave that travels through the air and touches it, setting off a big response with a small signal. That doesn't mean the two violins are reincarnations of each other, I hope.
Similarly, if you blow over the top of an open beer bottle, the whistling sound it makes is the frequency of vibration that fits in that bottle due to its length and shape. Because the sound fits in it, the sound reflects in the container in such a way as to self amplify, thus the air in the container resonates. Then there's those convoluted plastic pipes that you whirl around. A sound is produced at the resonator's natural frequency, and the higher tones you produce if you twirl it faster are the harmonics of that frequency. If the tube had no natural frequency--if it were not a resonator--there would be no harmonics because there would be no fundamental frequency to start with.
When two people resonate with each other, they don't need all that science to know that they fit together or at least get each other for a few minutes, days or years. Resonance is something we feel because it's basic to our reality. Resonance is a vibration thing, and our world is built on vibrations: the harmonics of awareness.
When an unworlder gets to the Other Lives zone of his subjective experience, he is able to merge with other folks and experience their lives through their eyes and other senses. He remembers their memories as if they were his own. Why? Because the configurations of the two, the "shape" of their psyches, is similar enough that they vibrate sympathetically. They resonate together. I suppose a really talented unworlder could merge with someone he doesn't resonate with, but the world is perhaps waiting for someone that talented to want to write a book.
This point--reincarnation is resonance--is so simple that I think beating it to death would do nothing for my health. I've been sick for two weeks and it's four o'clock in the morning, why am I up all night writing free books to give away on the internet? For the money? No, I have nothing to gain by showing people the simple answers for free. I think I just like being right.
When people nearly die, even if the machinery of modern medical science says they did die, and if they then come back to tell about it, what they actually had was an unworlding experience. They experienced the edges of a world that is beyond what we prisoners of the body typically know. But only the edges of it. If they had truly died, they would truly not have come back. The experiences they have are qualitatively not much different from other unworlding experiences. The NDE is potentially much more intense and long-lived as unworldings go, for the obvious reason that the 2-3-4 mind/body/world is temporarily not fit to be experienced. The tables have turned: so what happens when an individual is suddenly trapped in an unworld instead of being trapped in the everyday world as he normally is? Suddenly his beliefs kick in and manifest as real as real can be, he experiences his life over again in terms of whatever things he thinks, at a deep level, that he should feel good or bad about. He sees everything from the other person's point-of-view, and like anyone else who is unworlded, can merge with anybody he wants in order to experience even more memories, but will tend to merge with someone he resonates with because it's only natural.
None of this is required; every NDE is different. Which kinda says right there that every NDE is subjective. Not a good place to drum up a bundle of retail reality, or is it? I guess it is. Because if you've been to Nepal and I haven't, and you tell me that all Nepalese children have six fingers, I will believe you because I haven't been to Nepal. Silly example, I know. But there is a line beyond which a belief system cannot be stretched. That line, for me, is that almost dying makes some person's opinion about reality more true than mine. Here we have some truck driver or some lawyer who never thought twice about the nature of reality coming back from a near-death experience which reeks of every trait of subjectivity and emotionalism that could ever be packaged together into a single kind of experience, and suddenly they have met the infinite and I haven't? Their opinion is pure gold gospel and mine is not?
Hell's bells, I have met the infinite continuously for several decades, and throughout most of that time I have thought long and hard about these matters. I have paid close attention to this sort of thing for many years, and I have something that many of these NDE'rs don't have, when it comes to conjecturing about the nature of reality:
I am experienced.