Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Greatest challenge for science- Reincarnation

  1. Sep 15, 2009 #1
    Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    I don't know about other European countries but Here in south-east-Asian country, more definitely, India and Nepal, We have a bunch of stories regarding re-incarnation or rebirth. There are lots of evidence that a boy/girl only 3 or 4 years old start urging his parents that his real home is some-where else. He goes on describing that he was killed by this or that accident and that his real home is located in this .... exact location. He claims he has a wife and 2 children. When the desperate parents haunt for the house everything the child described will be perfectly matched. Moreover the child recognizes his widow at once, and even recognizes his parents or children.

    This story isn't just like the ghost story. There is a man here (I forgot his name) who has done Ph.d. in Re-incarnation. He says that almost 95% of such stories are true.
    Please don't don't don't think that I am making this story out of thin air. I also didn't believe in ghosts of spirit, But after learning about re-incarnation stories I have been stubbed.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 15, 2009 #2

    Ivan Seeking

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    An anecdotal report of other reports doesn't carry much weight. Perhaps you could cite a few well-documented cases and provide some links? Please cite only respectable sources.
     
  4. Sep 15, 2009 #3
    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    I thought some other would also come up with similar story in support of me. Since I now know that you aren't interested in the subject because the stories are fake, I would like to search for respectable links the will tell you the stories are true.
     
  5. Sep 15, 2009 #4
    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    Its rather good to know that reincarnation isn't scientifically explained because you scientists haven't actually seen such stories happen. Then at least there is chance that once I (if i would be able) prove to you the stories are real.
     
  6. Sep 15, 2009 #5

    negitron

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    Of course, the failure of science to observe an event can also indicate the event doesn't occur. The longer science goes without being able to observe an event which should be observable, the less likely the event is to ever occur.
     
  7. Sep 15, 2009 #6

    ideasrule

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper

    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    As a 3 or 4 year old, it must be rather tempting to pull off a prank like that, claiming to have been reincarnated. Some parents are sadly very gullible.
     
  8. Sep 15, 2009 #7

    CRGreathouse

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    I think the biggest problem with science testing reincarnation is the lack of falsifiable* questions.

    Gravity is falsifiable because, conceivably, an object might not fall; that they do supports the theory. SR is falsifiable because, conceivably, light might not be bent by heavy objects; that it is supports SR. Quantum mechanics is falsifiable because, conceivably, the double-slit experiment might fail; etc.

    What specific, testable hypotheses does this theory posit?

    If you'll give some of the specifics on your flavor of belief in reincarnation I may be able to suggest an experiment. For example, what information is retained? What can a person be reincarnated from and to? In what time frame are they reincarnated (same minute, same day, within a billion years)?

    * I'll leave this link to Karl Popper here in case someone wants to read more on falsifiability.
     
  9. Sep 15, 2009 #8
    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    I think verification of data is more difficult than finding testable hypotheses. For example, it is said that the 14th Dalai Lama knew things that he was never taught but which were known to the 13th Dalai Lama. A statistician might be able to calculate the probability of saying these things by chance. The problem is, the child reportedly said these things in private conversations with devout believers; he didn't say them before a scientific conference.
     
  10. Sep 15, 2009 #9

    CRGreathouse

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    I don't think there's any reason to attempt such verification. There are plenty of other ways that knowledge might have passed to the 14th Dalai Lama, and that renders the statistical techniques essentially worthless. You'd need a controlled test. For example:
    Make a computer program which converts numbers to 'poems', essentially error-correcting codes in natural language. Have x,000 dying patients each memorize a poem generated from a random number unique to that patient; store that poem safely (unknown to any person other than the patient). Have the computer verify that the poem is memorized correctly. Locate people born at the same time as the patient's death (c.f. the search for the Dalai Lama) and ask them, at an appropriate age, for the poem. Give good incentive for recalling it: cash, a sizable donation to a worthy cause, etc..
     
  11. Sep 16, 2009 #10
    Re: Greatest challenge for science-- Reincarnation!!!

    Heh, it could work.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: Greatest challenge for science- Reincarnation
Loading...