As children we were told by our grandparents that when someone dies, they go and become a star in the sky. However when we grow up to face the stark reality that everyone who takes birth has to die for sure, we start constantly worrying about death of our near and dear ones ,which is quite natural. But! What about the story after death? Does one really goes and become a star after they die? Well!! That’s an unsolved mystery for every human being as to what really happens when one dies.
Every time we see death or attend a funeral, we experience something like cemetery induced reclusion which makes our mind & body numb. It happens every time we see death from close quarters, particularly of near and dear ones. This makes us question about the very purpose of our life, the determination of right and wrong, of ethics and morality. We start thinking that if death is the be all and end all of it all and it can kill anyone, anytime, then why should we bother about doing good deeds and fear punishment for our sins? There are mainly two kinds of people who have two different beliefs in this regard. The first kind of people believe in rebirth of human beings and strongly feel that the account of our good and bad deeds will be settled on the Day of Judgment, when the dead would rise from their graves; and then there are second kind of people who not only believe that human souls are reborn, but they also feel that humans transmigrate into 8.4 million species before getting a human birth again.
However there is very little knowledge about third kind of people who believe that human souls take rebirth and always in the human body.
Let us suppose if humans are not reborn. In that case what reason would be there to perform good deeds and desist from bad ones? When people perform charity they do it with the conscious or subconscious awareness that it will bring them merit in future. But, what is that future for which they are accumulating merit? Surely it is one beyond death. Isn’t it?
Also, if there were no rebirth there would be no fear of punishment for one’s bad deeds either, and little to stop people from doing as they pleased as long as they could evade the law. Moreover, if there were no rebirth, what is the purpose of the life of those infants who die soon after birth? The fruit of past actions is the only explanation for the fact that some babies are born healthy and remain so all their lives while others are born with fatal complications or diseases that make their entire life miserable. We should understand that if there is no future after death, people would also not amass wealth right up to their death, or build houses in their old age. These efforts would be futile, in the absence of birth. Thus, our hopes of eternal prosperity and happiness, desire to earn merit by performing good deeds, fear of punishment in future births and feelings of eternal love and of patriotism, would not arise at all if rebirth were not a reality.
According to Hindu Mythology, a soul never dies, it is body which dies & immediately after death soul changes body as we change clothes. With modern techniques like Past Life Regression, there are lots of cases around us where we see a child claiming to be experiencing visions of his/her previous births.
Many of these cases have been verified by experts and psychologists who have recorded the testimonies of people recalling their previous birth and then crosschecked the facts with official records and the people mentioned by them. Various cases of child prodigies, who can memorize voluminous scriptures at a young age, or who excel their peers in particular academic disciplines, are also the result of the soul carrying its experiences and skills from one birth to another. Another simple fact that points to the reality of rebirth is that a soul cannot function without a body. If there were no rebirth where does the soul go after a person has died, and what does it do? Those who believe that the dead would rise from their grave on the Day of Judgment cannot say for sure who actually rises from the grave for the soul has departed, and the body disintegrates in the grave in a few years.
We must not forget a fact that just as a seed is of no use unless it is sown and tended to grow up into a plant, the existence of the soul is purposeless after leaving a body unless it takes rebirth. Thus denying rebirth militates against logic. As human beings nearly all our interactions are with fellow humans. Thus, we create karmic accounts with humans, to settle which we have to take birth in human form again. The analogy of the seed also illustrates this point. Just as a mango seed brings forth a mango tree, which then produces mangoes, which again provide mango seeds, the human soul possesses human qualities, feelings and experiences, and is the seed of human life.
Hence it cannot function in any other living creature’s body. Though many of the facts mentioned above are known to people, skepticism about the existence of souls and facts like rebirth are widespread because of the lack of an experience of soul-consciousness. Such an experience requires spiritual effort for which one has to focus the mind and the intellect inward and then contemplate on it in silence. Slowly one begins to sense the existence of a sentient entity within, which is the soul. Such an experience, repeated over time, brings soul-consciousness, or the belief that one is a soul. It is this experience of reality which removes the shroud of ignorance from all other facts of the subtle world of souls, which we usually dismiss in disbelief for lack of material proof. So let us practice to remain in soul consciousness and enjoy being an enlightened soul without any botheration.