Before we tread into the domain of Past Life… we need to understand the present and the future carefully. Before indulging in our Past Life, we also need to know the purpose of life’s journey as a whole.
Starting from the beginning… in the chronological order as the evolution took place… we shall find that we started the journey as an Amoeba (single cell formation)… this was the first manifestation which occurred in the life of every Human Being.
Traveling further into the Past Life, we find the evolutionary tendencies existing within every living being prompted this single cell formation to multiply into two cell formations and finally multi-cell organisms. (All these form the core of the past life of every Human Being).
With the passage of time… the multi-cell organism evolved into an insect, then into plant life, an animal, and finally as a Human Being. It takes an average of about 7.3 million manifestations before every journey culminates into the level of a Human Being. A long journey of about 80 earthly million years!
This is by no standard a small journey by our Soul (Atman) existing within every living being. Here while talking of past life, we also need to understand that the journey is being undertaken by the Soul within every living being and our body... the manifest from is but the outer covering for every Soul (Atman) which is necessitated for our Soul (Atman) cannot remove the dross from within on its own. It requires a body for this purpose.
Our Soul (Atman) never desires to look back into the Past Life... then why is it so that the manifest body… the form of a Human Being strongly desires to look back into the past life. Knowing very well that it is impossible to retrace our steps and walk into our Past Life, the desire within most human beings to look back into the Past Life is very strong.
Why is it so… why do we not get out of the clutches of the remembrances of our Past Life (if any) forever? Is it by any means possible to look back into the Past Life… no, it is not within the means of an average Human to look back into the Past Life, but some astrologers and people with Tantric powers can look back into our Past Life. But to what avail!
Trying to look back into the Past Life carries no meaning… what we were in our Past Life, what is our relationship with our Past Life, maybe after knowing some incidents of the Past Life we may be able to change our future life… is the hope of many, why?
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Why do we fail to understand that such a phenomenon of reflecting into the Past Life is not permitted by God the Almighty? Had it been so… every Human Being, rather every living being, would have remembered all the events of the past lives… but the truth is absolutely adverse? We do not carry even faint memories of our Past-Life the moment we step into the present life.
Remember for a moment that if you come to know that the best friend of yours in this life was the cause of your death in the immediate Past Life… would you be able to carry the same relationship as you are doing it now? Maybe… never!
Also, if you come to know that you were born into the house of your present parents to avenge your death in one of your past lives… then what would be your fate in this life? Would you continue to give the same respect to your parents… or maybe you go a step further and become the cause of death of your parents in this life!
The power of karma relegates the total crux of the Past Life. It is karma and karma alone which play a very vital role from one manifestation to another. The complete residual balance of our acts and omissions in a particular life is carried forward to the next life only through the process of karma. As we perform, so shall we get… nothing more or less!
Whatever was the result of our earlier manifestation led us to the next manifestation. For example, if the balance of karma resulted in our being born in the house of a cobbler… then, by no means was it possible that we would have been born in the house of a king. Yet, if we desire so in the present life, then we need to perform the karma accordingly in the present life and only if the balance of karma in the present life at the fag end of life permits our being born in the house of a king in the next manifestation… it shall be so, and none can change our destiny!
On the contrary… if the Karma (the actions performed by us in totality) performed by us in the present life demands our being born in the house of a farmer in the next life, then it shall hold good… come whatever may! None can change the destiny of any being except the being himself. Even God the Almighty, who always acts as an onlooker (Dhrishta as we call it in Hinduism), never interferes in their working.
The balance of karma from one life to another gets passed on to the next life through the complex process of chromosomes, which get activated during the parents’ union. The child thus born carries the balance karma of all the previous lives one has lived. It is simply like the balance of accounts in a balance sheet that gets carried forward from one year to another.
If we are talking of the year 2004, we are only concerned with the closing balance of the year 2003 for the closing balance of the year 2002 was already incorporated in the balance sheet of the year 2003.
We also must remember that the present phase of life is a part of the total journey of 8.4 million manifestations that can occur in a soul’s life (Atman as in Hinduism). At the end of the journey, the Soul liberates forever from the cycle of birth and death… and subsequently, the Human Being is said to gain Salvation (Moksha in Hinduism).
The journey for the Soul from the first manifestation as an amoeba to the last manifestation as a Mahavira, Gautama Buddha, Jesus Christ, or prophet Mohammed… is spread over a maximum of 8.4 million manifestations. Therefore, it is purely dependent upon every Human Being when one desires to curtail the journey and achieve the state of Salvation (Moksha).
We also need to remember that contrary to the standard practices in account books… some events of the past lives cannot fructify in that particular manifestation or the next. Therefore, the karma enacted upon in a particular manifestation may fructify four manifestations later, and this is the cause of all agony existing on Mother Earth. Why so?
While deliberating on the subject of Past Life… we need to remember that on the spiritual plane… whatever phase of life we are passing through is not dependent upon the balance of karma of the earlier lives and the karma performed by us in the present life alone. It is also possible that certain karma performed by us in one of our previous lives may all of a sudden fructify and spoil the game (known as Prarabdha karma in Hinduism). The vice versa may also happen.
Explaining the theory of Past Life further… we need to understand that we sometimes find that many people continue to flout the set patterns of society by carrying out a horde of sins yet continue to enjoy privileges that should not be available to them. Explaining this further… such a phenomenon is only possible for these people to have in their store… a huge asset of pious deeds performed in Past-Life.
Only when the accumulated balance of the pious deeds gets nullified in the present life shall these people face the wrath of society. Never before! On the contrary, we also find good people carrying out pious deeds in the present life and continue to suffer. It is only because they have a good negative balance of karma from the Past Life in their hold, and unless this negative balance (from the Past Life) is nullified by the pious deeds of the present life… such people can never enjoy happiness.
Trying to understand the complex process of the Past Life is not difficult, yet trying to get back into the Past Life carries no meaning, for if we are suffering in the present life… we need to carry out pious deeds and accumulate Punya Karma (positive balance of karma) in the present life without heeding to the Past Life in any way. There is no other way to come out of the negative Past-Life.
Life has been made like that by God the Almighty. None can challenge his authority. Why brood over the Past Life and spoil the present life. If we are to get out of the ills faced by us in the present life and which resulted because of the Past Life… the only way out is never thinking of the past life and concentrating on the affairs of the present life to accumulate more and more of Punya Karma (positive karma) in our favor.
This is the only way out of our Past Life! Why spoil the future by indulging in acts (trying to regress into the Past-Life) detrimental to our leading a happy life in the next manifestation. We need to live a life of concentration… our every effort leading to earning Punya Karma (a positive balance of karma) in our favor is the only way to lead a healthier and fruitful life! (It is time we stopped thinking about what was in a Past Life).