Tucker’s Life Before Life explores the stories and experiences of children who claim to be reincarnated souls, and also explores the thoughts of skeptics and those who are inclined to believe their stories are not true. While I am still somewhat skeptical of the concept of reincarnation, primarily because of religious reasons, I found this collection of stories and information to be extremely compelling and helpful in my journey to understanding my views on the overarching themes of spirituality that we’re exploring in this course.
One of the most interesting chapters of Tucker’s investigation was that which detailed some of the abnormal behaviors that are common in children who claim they are reincarnated souls. He describes things such as “surviving emotions,” which is often in the form of longing for a connection with family members who have passed, and “un-acquired taste,” where children have odd preferences in things like food and entertainment. As an example, a striking case of twins, Gillian and Jennifer Pollock, is told, showing behaviors that indicated they were the reincarnated souls of their late twin sisters, who had passed only one year before they were born. As a number of situations unfolded, it became clear that their lives were more than coincidentally similar. For example, Gillian suggested that Jennifer’s birthmark was the result of an accident that had actually involved her late sister Jacqueline, and both girls expressed a desire to visit a park because of the swing set, when they had no first hand knowledge of the park’s swing set.
This evidence, to me, makes a strong case that these children have undergone some kind of significant emotional and spiritual experience. While some of these stories may seem far-fetched or simply coincidental, and I’m not entirely confident in how I’ve will interpret them collectively, I am very intrigued by this possibility. Additionally, it seems that this idea of reincarnation is often comforting to those who have lost loved one and are eager to reconnect with them. Knowing the spiritual and emotional comfort that this idea can bring to people makes me more receptive to the idea and willing to accept it as a possibility.