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Reincarnation or rebirth has always been a fascinating concept. Like Hinduism, there are many other popular cultures which talk about a person being born again and again on this Earth. For example, Buddhism also believes in rebirth. Ancient Egyptians were staunch believers of life after death and rebirth. That is why they erected monuments and created mummies to preserve their dead.
According to the Hindu philosophy, 'punarjanma' or rebirth literally means re-entering the flesh again. The most popular example from the Hindu mythology of rebirth is the incarnations of Lord Vishnu. He assumes the human form again and again to save the Earth from evil. Similarly, we also hear of reincarnation stories about various other deities.
But how exactly does this concept of reincarnation or rebirth work? Here are some interesting and amazing facts about rebirth which you may not know. Let us take a look.
The Concept Of Soul
According to the Hindu philosophy, the 'aatma' or soul cannot be destroyed. Even if the body dies, the soul of a person lives on. The soul changes body in the same manner as we change into new clothes. The new body depends on our Karma or the things, good or bad, that we may have done in our previous life. If one has accumulated good Karma, then he/she is born as a human again. On the other hand, if one had bad Karma, then he/she is born according to the nature of the Karma.
Amazing Facts You Probably Didn't Know
1) Most of the times a human being is born as a human being only. But sometimes, he/she may be born as an animal, depending on the Karma.
2) If a person dies suddenly with a lot of unfulfilled wishes, then he/she becomes a ghost. That soul will then be stuck between the material and the spiritual world, waiting for its release and favourable conditions to be reborn again.
3) Hindus believe that it is only their physical form which is mortal and can be destroyed. Perhaps that is why Hindus, as a part of the death rites, hit the head of the corpse in order to make him forget life went by to prevent the soul from being haunted with memories in the next birth. They believe the soul ascends to heights inaccessible to humans and it returns to live in a new body.
4) It should be interesting to note that every human gets seven chances to be reborn in the physical form of a man or woman and thereby gets the chance to commit good or evil and decide on its fate later.
5) Another important fact that you should know is that a soul does not acquire the next birth immediately after the death of its previous body. Only after years, when the conditions are suitable, a soul can acquire a new body and be born again.
6) According to some sages, everything, since the time of the big-bang, is stored in our memory. But only a few people have the ability to recall it. This means the memories of our previous births are also recorded in our unconscious mind which we may never recall.
7) Hindus believe that in the centre of their forehead is the third eye which opens when one unites the soul with god or becomes one with Brahma. They believe the soul remains trapped in samsara (material world) till the human being comes to a point of opening the third eye.