Evidence for Rebirth

Plenty of evidences here. I prefer the ones with kids remembering past lives.

This is independent of Buddhism.

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Venerable @NgXinZhao recently posted this video link in the Bhikkhu Bodhi Nibbāna thread:

This physics-oriented description of What Happens When There’s Nothing is brilliant, I find. Besides, the afore-mentioned thread has fascinated me. The discussion provides ways to consider post-physical-death for someone who has attained nibbāna. (I realize that’s not the purpose of the thread but it has evolved organically over the weeks.) Of course, it requires slogging through the thread! It’s a different way of cracking the rebirth nut.

That is not casting doubt about rebirth, he affirmed rebirth many times already. This is to avoid the eternalism and annihilation view.

If jiva is the body, then it all ends at death, annihilation view. If jiva is not the body, then nothing can destroy it, eternalism view.

The middle path is that there’s no soul, but only dependently arising things which can dependenly cease, or else rebirth happens.

I’m not sure whether rebirth is true or not, though I think it more likely than not that it isn’t, at least not in the form that we find it in the EBTs. As far as I can tell, it doesn’t seem like there’s any reason to think that the laws of physics operate differently in the brain. It seems like this would have to be the case if the theory of rebirth were true, unless one appeals to some form of parallelist dualism (ie, there’s a correlation between mental states and physical states, but it’s just a coincidence and there’s no actual causal interaction).

I could probably be convinced otherwise if I had evidence in the form of memories of some past life giving me information about something I couldn’t possibly know otherwise. It does actually seem like there is the possibility of this in the EBTs, if one gains some mastery of the jhānas. I’m not sure I find any of the purported evidence of past lives to be particularly reliable. It seems to have the same problems as other purported evidence of supernatural phenomena.

If the theory of rebirth isn’t true, then I think that when I die my stream of consciousness will cease without remainder.

I’m also not sure whether it would matter to me if the theory of rebirth were true. It’s not clear to me that “my” future life is connected with “me” in this life in such a way as to ground self-interested concern—I’m not sure I would care about my future life in the same way that I care about what’s going to happen to me in a year’s time. It doesn’t really seem like my future life is “me” in the same way that “me” in one year’s time is me. It seems more like it’s some future person, who is similar to me in some ways, and whose wellbeing depends very much on what I do in this life. I wouldn’t want bad things to happen to this person, but I don’t seem to fear such bad things in the way that I would fear future suffering that I would experience in this life.

I’m not really sure how much any of this matters, though, since it seems to me that trying to live a life in accordance with the dhamma is going to give me the happiest life. However, it could have some moral significance. If it turns out that rebirth is false, then it might turn out that my time could be better spent putting effort into improving other people’s lives in this world. It seems plausible to me that the life that has the best effect on the world isn’t really one which would give one the greatest happiness. However, if it turned out that rebirth were true, then it seems that the moral thing to do would be to put all my effort into achieving enlightenment, since this is going to be the most effective way of reducing the suffering in the world.


Read them then judge. They are independent of Buddhism. So whatever your faith of the dhamma is, it doesn’t matter to these evidences.

I have a bachelor’s in physics and I think that these evidences are enough to be declared fact, if only people are not blocked from reading them by the views of annihilationism (physicalist who cannot think of anyway mind can survive death), or eternalism (the God based religions).

Alright, I’ll have a look.

I’m somewhat soured by the apparent fact that it’s funded by Robert Bigelow, who seems to be a crank: Robert Bigelow - Wikipedia


here’s another source, not connected to bigelow.

Thanks Bhante, there are interesting accounts here from Reddit regarding reincarnation/rebirth which I enjoyed reading (many of the owners of these accounts do not seem Buddhist):


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Namo Buddhaya!

I was undecided about rebirth until learning about special relativity.

It convinced me as i figured that the conception & perception in a given frame of reference must continue after death as there was nothing to suggest otherwise.

I didn’t see how one could annihilate what is essentially a manifestation of the world just because the world somehow changes where a being dies therein and thus I became convinced.

Basically i asserted that it doesn’t matter what & where in the conceived & perceived world is conceived as the basis for percipience and that for as long as there is a basis - for that long the frame of reference will be with localized conception & perception of a here & now changing as it persists

Dhamma then added to my understanding explaining the dependent origination of this dukkha and the basis for it’s not coming into play.

Because of this, my life has been well spent and I will lay down this body as a very happy man even with no further development.

Not trying to proselytize ( regarding dependent origination I cannot say yathaham janami). But I think Ven Acela kassapa had the same sort of thoughts as above. See SN12.17

How is SR able to suggest some sort of after death thing?

As far as I know, for SR, present plane is not fixed, so given event A and B on the same timeline, say on Earth, A representing birth of Alice B representing death of alice. Bob, who is on earth can see both birth and death of alice, and birth is before death of alice.

But Charlie on a Galaxy far far away, moving relative to Bob and Alice, might be able to see the birth and death of Alice in his past or future, depending on his velocity, that is provided that Charlie and Alice are space-like separated, that is so far apart, light has no time to travel between them yet. But past a certain timeframe, when light of the event B, death of Alice comes to Charlie, Alice is always in the past of Charlie. There’s no more ambiguity on the timeframe and sequence of causality.

Rebirth is when Alice got reborn in event C, maybe on earth, as another person maybe May Parker, aunt of Peter Parker.

None of these suggests rebirth cannot be ended completely.

The way i thought about it was in reference to there being no simultaneity of perceived events across the variant frames of reference.

The implication of this is that a particular temporal sequence of a world’s evolution can only be preserved by a particularly special frame of reference and not otherwise because there is no general frame of reference but a system of special relativity where no special frame is a master.

One could ask If i was to delete a frame of reference from the system would it follow that all those perceived events actually happened otherwise? This doesn’t follow because if i pull a single special frame of reference then there is no basis to speak about the other frames either, removing one collapses the entire system of reference that there was based on this frame’s relations.

In general this points to our predicament being like a dream because dreams are essentially like this where the entire world in-formation is conceived & perceived in a given frame of reference. And therefore death doesn’t matter at all lest one asserts materialist views.

The evidence for rebirth is that it’s clearly evident in the Dhamma’s preaching. The Buddha was not delusional.


I always like MN60 for the explanation of rebirth. The evidence of rebirth is not important rather it is the believe of rebirth that is important. This believe is reason that motivates the practise of Buddhism. Without rebirth, Buddhism ceased to exist.

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I think belief is the forerunner but one has to figure things out in order to become convinced as to get rid of doubt.

This doubt has one big negative effect in that it counters the fear of the consequences pertaining to one’s wrongdoing to be experienced after death.

Therefore a person who doubts rebirth will be fearless & unable to curb his misbehavior to that extent. It’s an inherent psychological deficiency that is there due to delusion & ignorance.

“Mendicants, there are these four fears. What four? The fears of guilt, shame, punishment, and going to a bad place.

And what, mendicants, is the fear of rebirth in a bad place? It’s when someone reflects: ‘Bad conduct of body, speech, or mind has a bad result in the next life. If I were to do such bad things, when my body breaks up, after death, I’d be reborn in a place of loss, a bad place, the underworld, hell.’ Being afraid of rebirth in a bad place, they give up bad conduct by way of body, speech, and mind, and develop good conduct by way of body, speech, and mind, keeping themselves pure. This is called the fear of rebirth in a bad place. SuttaCentral

As you can see this is something very fundamental to one’s training and a pillar of restraint.

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Great topic for a thread. This site really changed how I saw rebirth. The site summarises the strongest reincarnation cases, though some cases are still stronger than others. This is as good as you’re going to get in terms of observable evidence on this topic. Some of the cases that particularly stand out to me:

I have many hypothesis after reading almost all the cases on the site. Namely, what seems to make someone remember a past life is some strong emotional “trauma” (for lack of a better term). It seems that memories surface in relation to some emotional event (or craving you could say), which often tends to happen in cases when the individual dies young or suddenly.

I’ve studied more than 5,000 near death experiences. My research has convinced me without a doubt that there’s life after death.


How do you combine knowledge about evolution of mankind and rebirth?
Do you believe mankind has some ape-like ancestor?
Why do you believe humans are not animals?

There is a LOT of scientific evidence for rebirth. You can take a look at the following links:

Also, scientific studies have been conducted and academic articles have been published on the subject – I have listed a few examples below:

Mills, A., Haraldsson, E., & Keil, H. H. J. (1994). Replication studies of cases suggestive of reincarnation by three independent investigators. Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, 88, 207–219.

Stevenson, I. (2006). Half a career with the Paranormal. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 20(1), 13–21.

Barker, D. R., & Pasricha, S. K. (1979). Reincarnation cases in Fatehabad: A systematic survey in North India. Journal of Asian and African Studies, 14, 231–241.

Tucker, J. B. (2005). Life before life: a scientific investigation of children’s memories of previous lives. Macmillan.

Stevenson, I. (2000). Unusual play in young children who claim to remember previous lives. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 14, 557–570.

Haraldsson, E., & Samararatne, G. (1999). Children who speak of memories of a previous life as a Buddhist monk: Three new cases. Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, 63, 268–291.

Cook, E. W., Pasricha, S., Samararatne, G., Maung, U., & Stevenson, I. (1983). Review and analysis of “unsolved” cases of the reincarnation type: II. Comparison of features of solved and unsolved cases. The Journal of the American Society for Psychical Research, 77(1), 45–62.

Stevenson, I. (1990). Phobias in children who claim to remember previous lives. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 4, 243–254.

Tucker, J. B. (2013). Return to life: Extraordinary cases of children who remember past lives. Macmillan.

Stevenson, I. (2000). The phenomenon of claimed memories of previous lives: Possible interpretations and importance. Medical Hypotheses, 54, 652–659.

Stevenson, I., & Keil, J. (2005). Children of Myanmar who behave like Japanese soldiers:A possible third element in personality. Journal of Scientific Exploration, 19, 171–183.


If people don’t know what i am talking abouts it’s stuff like this here

This is also interesting in relation to sannavedaniyanirodha because when one’s mind turns to cessation the world ends in a definitive sense as the entire world system is then not conceived of in a given frame of reference.

If one understands this then one will see that there is no end to dukkha without reaching the end of the world and that the end is not conceived & perceived as it is the end of conception & perception.

“Bhikkhus, I say that the end of the world cannot be known, seen, or reached by travelling. Yet, bhikkhus, I also say that without reaching the end of the world there is no making an end to suffering.” SuttaCentral

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