Reflecting on Rebirth: An Understanding That Can Go Beyond Faith and Theory

Dear @Lola, I just want to also acknowledge your experiences, your views and the hope, self-confidence and the beautiful wholesome qualities of


that have clearly become part of your heart and Practice.

It’s not easy for most of us to learn to focus on the positives, but to acknowledge what you’ve suffered and come to this

is amazing. What we focus on grows; may the beautiful qualities you’ve mentioned and many other wholesome qualities continue to grow much happiness and peace in your heart. Thanks again Lola.

With metta :hibiscus:


Dear Kay,
Thank you for your soft, gentle and kind reply. Sharing from the heart of our experience feels like the best way to connect . I am glad you have insisted to use this way of sharing. Looking forward to new topics for discussion.
With much metta, Lola ( my name is Alona):blush::blush::rose:


Dear Alona,

I am so glad that the boundaries set at the start of this thread have been helpful for you.

Lol :slight_smile: I think I may have “run my course” for a little…we shall see! :slight_smile:

But you could always start a topic too :heartpulse: :wink: :heartpulse: …if you would like to :cherry_blossom: :slight_smile:

With much metta, :hibiscus: :heartpulse: :hibiscus:


After 24 years in the Dhamma, Rebirth is no more a may-be but instead I have a sense of certainty. I studied this topic in depth for years including reading Pr Stevenson and Jim Tucker books as I thought if the Buddha believed in rebirth I could not say he was simply following what was in his culture. It would have been like saying that the Buddha was deluded!
What may have been the critical event for me was my reliving an experience of a past life during the middle ages somewhere in Europe while I was under hypnotism under the guidance of someone specialised in past lives regression.
It is now cristal clear to me that the dhamma without rebirth does not make sense at all for so many reasons that I’ll not present here.


Thank you very much for sharing your perspective and experiences Alaber! :anjal: :anjal:

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Coming from a Catholic background and growing up in an area totally devoid of Buddhists, I attribute my affinity for Buddhadhamma to past life influences. The string of instances, which I won’t bore you with here, are too much to be coincidence.


I’m curious if anyone has “flashes” of images or places that come up in deep meditation repeatedly? Nothing too specific, just images (in my case it was seeing fabric from a coat I wore, the texture and consistency). This is where some of my experiences began just lasting very briefly. Its like seeing one frame of a movie. Then eventually they became longer with more details falling in like feelings, sounds, emotions, etc. I am wondering if maybe these “flashes” are more common than people may think, they just don’t know what they are or they don’t “fill out” more? If that makes any sense?


Yes! I always have images of tiny bubbles appearing while in deep meditation. I don’t know if there’s any significance to them.

A few days ago while in meditation I asked: “Who was I in my previous rebirth?” (Got the idea while watching a Dhamma talk on rebirth by Ajahn Brahm on YouTube.) A few minutes later an image appeared of a baby’s face. I could see the outline of the eyelids (its eyes were closed), the tiny nose, the tiny mouth, the tiny ears, and the tiny head. But then I realized that it wasn’t a baby: it’s facial features weren’t fully developed, and it was surrounded in darkness. It was a fetus. I was looking at a fetus inside the womb. I was looking at myself inside my mother’s womb! To be more precise, my consciousness was looking at the face of the fetus that moments later would become its present body (myself).

I have to say that it was an intense experience… life-changing…an image of a moment that has solidified my conviction of the reality of rebirth: a truth never to be doubted again…


@Jose, that’s a great moment- thank you for sharing it. Have you tried going to a place before that moment happened? I have images of inbetween states but are much harder to access.



Thank you @Mat! I haven’t tried accessing in-between states, but I’ll try again sometime today. When I saw that fetus image, it happened on its own, I wasn’t in control. I’ll let you know if I see anything else.


Wow!! :sparkles:


I spoke to Ajahn Brahm about this and he said to pre-program my mind with questions for next time this comes up. So if you see an image in the womb the idea that you want earlier is already there. Ditto if you see your death. That can be traumatic otherwise. If you get to a stabler bit of the life, knowing your name and village is useful.


Thank you @pasanna for the advice! I’ll try that from now on. I had been wondering how to best approach these experiences during meditation, and this method seems appropriate.


I am being a bit cheeky and answering, with some seriousness, a question that I think was asked in jest! I ask @Coemgenu’s forgiveness and also thank him for his amusing question and his translation work here.

So, to be extra clear, this is taken out of context, but Coemgenu asked:

So here’s my serious answer to a funny question, which I’ve openly taken out of context!

If you’ll forgive me for saying so, I think the question is not a useful one.

I think teachings like this are there to give us a sense of the scope (therefore to motivate us) of the problem and a sense of an aspect of the process that is “us” (therefore to give us a bit of insight to help direct our efforts).

For me, I’m finding my current reflective understanding of Dependent Origination (spanning over more than one life), Anatta and Kamma actually lends itself to a deeper, and more actual, letting go of guilt and blame towards myself or others.

Of course, it’s not perfect, but it’s like this new way of Viewing things is challenging the old way and it’s, well, liberating. I feel more understanding (because of the teaching on conditionality) and more forgiving (because of the teaching on anatta) and more patient and kind with myself and others (because of the teachings on kamma and rebirth seen in conjunction with anatta - which I suppose is a major part of 3 life DO).

Anyway, I don’t think you need to do any Hail Mayas or any kind of penance. This isn’t Buddhism as I understand it. Instead it’s about getting a sense of the bigger picture and allowing it to inform your ability to let go of guilt, fear and any other unwholesome, unhelpful states that may arise.

Anatta seen through the lens of Right View (as I currently see it) shows us, as Aoife said in her thread: It was not my fault!.

So, this is another way in which an open acceptance of Rebirth has impacted me. I know in my own mind that this is the case: I can see the mental process in my internal world. I can also see the impact in my external world where I relate to others and also in how I approach situations and stress etc. I can see how it has influenced my ability to let go of the past, of guilt and blame, shame and anxiety. Yes, of course it’s still a work in progress but I feel I’ve a sense of how to direct myself that is of practical, real and felt (on the level of vedana) benefit to myself and others and that this direction flows from how I’m approaching Right View.

This helps me to feel more relaxed and this makes it easier to be kinder, more restrained in speech more often, more confident in myself, more tolerant and armed with a higher sense of self-esteem. Yes, these are all also works in progress - but it’s nice to see and feel these improvements in Sila too. All this makes me feel confident that I’m going in the right direction.

Thank you again for the inspiration and good humour Coemgenu! :heartpulse::pray:t6:


Actually, in real life, I was told that, for writing that poem, I have profoundly and integrally slandered the Buddhadharma. Demonic birth being implied behind that.

Perhaps @DKervick’s recent thread was an equally good place to link it to!


This was so well put, it brought tears to my eyes.

Thank you


A post was split to a new topic: Setting and removing boundaries; Kamma & Rebirth are about forgiveness and letting go

Thanks- it also means that our petty competition to beat others in our consumption, is a lost cause and finally without meaning on several levels.

with metta


Great thread.
I have avoid letting my thoughts approach past lives; when I have found this life almost unbearable, why risk awareness which has to include pain and pleasures and observation of “my” past lives’ stupidity and defilements?

Perhaps it would not be as pointless and agonizing as I quietly fear. Perhaps they might even contribute positively to this life.

I sit next to an old cat. She and I became life partners (in a way) 18 years ago. She approaches the end of this life. She and I have had many mutually beneficial communications over the years; i think she has learned quite a few english words and primate body language, and is perhaps the better student. While she is also bonded to my human life partner for the last 8 or so years, i carry responsibility and lol Power of Attorney for any end of life decisions. I hope to care you her well, as long as she chooses to live, and to help her spiritually if I may.

She has helped me, when some humans would not bother. When i would barely bothet.

Anyway… i have sorrow now for every nasty mean wish i have ever made towards any being. In the immortal wisdom of imaginary being homer simpson, “d’oh!!!”


Our friends on the Path come in varied forms, I’ve noticed. :wink: