Probabilities of reincarnation?

n0ki

New Member
#1
Reincarnation might exist, or it might not. The later would give us the situation the demon spoke of in Nietzsche`s writings, about having to relive the same life again & again. If we`re to be impartial about things, its 50/50% if reincarnation exists or not. Either it does, or it doesn`t. I, for one, can`t imagine any other possibilities so it`s either/or. Assuming it does exist, what other probabilities are we faced with?
Reincarnating into this same universe, or not. By another universe I mean one with different laws of physics.

Reincarnating into the same timeline of the same universe, or not. Quantum mechanics would`ve it that even if `the laws of physics are unchanged, there are multiple potential parallel dimensions of this universe. Is there any reason to believe multiple universes can exist at once? Perhaps this universe has to live its full lifespan before any othe universe comes into being. But one may be able to skip that if reincarnation goes forward or backwards in time.

Reincarnating backwards, forwards or smoothly in time. We`ll differentiate forwards in time from smoothly by how forward jumps from the point of death till some future point (for example a decade), while if smooth, you`d reincarnate instantly after your death. So if you died in in year 2000 8:00 pm, you`ll reincarnate at that exact same time too.

However, aren`t we faced with the possibility it might not be the time of our deaths that determined when we will reincarnate? Perhaps it is at the midpoint between our death & birth at which we reincarnate? So if you were born in 2010, died in 2020 you`d reincarnate in 2015. Or one might reincarnate after one`s birth, so whoever was born immediatelty after you, you would reincarnate as. It doesn`t have to be physical birth btw, because as the abortion debate shows there`s so much controversy surrounding all of that. If there`s a soul (which reincarnation needs) then there might be some point where the soul "merges" with the body (or perhaps the soul manifests itself physically, who knows) so we can speculate that instead of physical birth in this paragraph.

What about location? Is one as likely to reincarnate here as one is to reincarnate somewhere else in the universe, assuming other intelligent lifeforms exist out there? What about one`s birth place & place of death? Is there any reason to think one would reincarnate at the same places one died or was born? or that there might be some midpoint thing again, for example if one was born in London & died in Paris, one would reincarnate somewhere between them? Or, one might reincarnate anywhere but at the exact point where one was born, died, or just have been throughout one`s life. Or one may be limited to reincarnating anywhere one has been to throughout one`s life.

Could one possibly be reincarnated as a lower lifeform, like an animal? I have a hard time seeing myself with much weaker cognitive faculties; it just seems like that wouldn`t even be me.
What about the death method - should one prefer cremation or burning to death over preserving the body? One could speculate the soul has an easier to time moving on when the body is destroyed, but couldn`t it just as easily be the other way around?
If one reincarnates into another, totally different world, some would imagine that to be hell, some would imagine it to be heaven. But these are extreme worlds. Wouldn`t it be more likely for sth in between to be where one ends up?

Is there a reason to believe there might be different "soul types"? If so, then it might not be a coincidence that one has the biological mother & father one has. Perhaps this explains why some reject implants too. I know there`re scientific reasons for that but if we knew more about reincarnation then that might be scientific too after all & be connected to genes, etc. If such soul types exist, are some types inherently given to reincarnating in particular ways over the others?

There`s also the chances there`s some luck involved to. So, if one wanted to change universes one would have to try a few times before succeeding.

Is there any reason at all to assume that humans, or perhaps other beings affect the reincarnation probabilities in any way, shape or form? For example, some conspiracy theorists would have it that conspirators have access to magic, & one application of magic would ofc be to manipulate reincarnation. Our planet, if life is viewed from a dramatic, literary, genre-based, etc perspective, does appear far more sinister & "conspiratorial" then, say, a world which only has pristine nature, innocence, & natural cycles every year, with no "history/metanarratives" & no top secret informations. OTOH, couldn`t our world appearing like so all just be a coincidence, or, if there`s a creator (of the universe), be a a prank/red herring? The same could be applied to those who claim those who live virtuously are heaven-bound in the afterlife, couldn`t it just as easily be the opposite, that is, the vicious going to heaven, or no correlation at all that is purely random where people end up? Could simply desiring to reincarnating in one way over another give one the power to do so?

Overall, with all these considerations to take into account, if one wanted to be reincarnated in an universe totally different from this one, is there a reason to favor one way of dying over another? One location to die in than another? One time to die then another? Outside of these, are there any other factors that should be taken into account? I know only a little about probability theory & I know one of the main questions is the treatment of priors. Bayesian decides on priors before? & there are multiple other approaches to probability: https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/how-do-you-interpret-raw-data.240553/ but perhaps that might not be relevant to this thread. I was hoping one of you have the insight to determine if it has.

Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. However, let's say we simply won't ever find evidence, thus it comes down to probability. This makes sense, for how could you possibly gather indubitable evidence on the afterlife? As you say, it might be 2%, 80%, etc. We can't say 100% or 0% tho, as we don't know for sure, neither against or for. The average of everything from & including 1% to & including 99% is 50/50%.

the russell teapot https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell's_teapot, unlike reincarnation could theoretically be verified w/ epistemically objective methods like seeing thru telescopes & sending probes, but reincarnation may still metaphysically objectively exist, yes? Before we didn't know of UV rays, but now have epistemically objective verification. Wouldn't reincarnation depend on epistemic subjectivity to know for sure?

rationale austhink.com/rationale2.0/ib/exercises/tok/objective_subjective.htm:
Roughly speaking, 'objective' means 'independent of the individual', and 'subjective' means 'pertaining to the individual, or peculiar to a particular personal perspective on the world'.

We apply these terms in two very different ways:
Firstly, we use the terms to talk about two ways that things exist. We do this to make metaphysical claims - claims about what is real or has being, or in what sense something exists.
Metaphysically objective things exist independently of being experienced.
Metaphysically subjective things are those whose existence depends on their being experienced.

Secondly, we can apply these terms to talk about two different kinds of knowledge. When we do this we're making epistemological claims - claims about how we know things.
Epistemically objective statements have a truth value decided by public methods.
Epistemically subjective statements have a truth value decided by reference to individual perspectives.

A final question, are multiple lives, at least for the individual, inevitable simply because he can imagine it? Is sth bound to happen, given enough time, as long as one can imagine it? Fantasy comes from the unconscious, perhaps the unconscious is simply what is far removed from us in space, time & other dimensions. Going by that, our fantasies of all these other worlds could be interpreted as these worlds "calling" to us or "echoing/reverberating" thru to us, yes? The downside of this, ofc, is that one will experience all the boredom one has ever imagined as well as the worst of tortures one has imagined... unless there`s some "rule" or whatever that locks out these, but one can imagine a time when this rule won`t exist anymore too, so....
 

n0ki

New Member
#2
am not Jabba ; )

edit:

Here`s another dilemma. Say you had sth you wished to share with your potential future or smooth reincarnation in same universe, on same timeline. However, sharing it would entail some practical effort, which ideally one would want to skip, but in this scenario, one cannot eat & have cake. Rationally, should one go thru the effort? After all, it is possible one reincarnates in future or smooth senses, in same universe, on same timeline. But then again, there might be a rule which says youĺl reincarnate into ANY timeline but this one. Should one go thru the effort despite this possibility simply because of the sheer chance of one reincarnating in future or smooth senses, in same universe, on same timeline?
 
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Englund

TS Contributor
#3
[...] it might be 2%, 80%, etc. We can't say 100% or 0% tho, as we don't know for sure, neither against or for. The average of everything from & including 1% to & including 99% is 50/50%.
Is the probability distribution of the probabilities really in such a way that the mid point also is the average? Absence of evidence isn't per se evidence of absence, but it's often a good indication of it. Therefore it is reasonable to assume that the probability distribution of the probabilities is extremely skewed to the right, thus making the expected probability close to zero - not 50/50.

What would the world look like if the expected probability of everything that lacks evidence would be 0.5?
 

n0ki

New Member
#4
Is the probability distribution of the probabilities really in such a way that the mid point also is the average? Absence of evidence isn't per se evidence of absence, but it's often a good indication of it. Therefore it is reasonable to assume that the probability distribution of the probabilities is extremely skewed to the right, thus making the expected probability close to zero - not 50/50.

What would the world look like if the expected probability of everything that lacks evidence would be 0.5?
Well, in a universe where you know what happens after death, things would be different existentially. Thus, the lack of knowledge of what happens after death informs meaning in this universe. The default position of empiricism seems to be that anything which doesn't have obvious proof/grounding should be dismissed. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hitchens's_razor This makes sense when its about sth concrete, specific. So ofc not everything can have 0.5 prob. But in case of reincarnation, it just strengthens the default existential situation where assuming one only has a single life is the safer assumption, which is dis empowering as that means all matters much more. If the intention of the universe is for that to happen, then we are playing right into its hands. There should at least be 2 types of universe, 1 denies inhabitants knowledge of what happens after death, the other doesn't. Ours is the former.

Another question for everyone: we know for sure THIS world exists due to own experience. By experience, we know time moves linearly forward. Based on this, is it more likely that reincarnation happens in future or smooth senses, in same universe, on same timeline? The alternative is that all bets are off upon death. Since death is the great unknown, does it make more sense to assume all bets are off? Or is this another 50/50%?
 
#5
I don't really believe in it but I have heard some real stories from reliable individuals. It is hard to firmly believe if you do not have the first hand experience.
 

Englund

TS Contributor
#6
I wouldn't even believe it with first hand experience. The chances that I'm crazy is much greater than the probability that I've been reincarnated. Therefore it is unreasonable to assume reincarnation even when you yourself have memories of experiencing it.
 

hlsmith

Omega Contributor
#7
The human mind is fallible, incorrigible and unreliable. Just for humor's sake, given I have not read the full first post, do just beings of higher consciousness get reincarnated or does my cat and plant get the opportunity? And how about twins or say a parasitic twin? How about a cloned person? How about AI? What happens during a plague? Everything can be put into probabilities, it just might be you could spend the rest of your life counting the zeros to the righthand-side of the decimal on this one.

Everybody is entitled to their own beliefs, lets just hope they are not harmful to other. Peace on Earth!
 
#8
An interesting topic. I am a devil's advocate, so doing my hobby:

Reincarnation or any other metaphysical activity requires the individuality of entities, to exist. A curse needs its victim to be identifiable! But there is no individual entities. In the best scenario, there only exists a space-time matrix filled with different pixels, that we tend to encapsulate some bunches of them as objects. The only single and intact entity is the space-time matrix itself. Everything, physical or mental, is only a fragmented being [even the mind which might be free of the space-time matrix], fused to other fragmented beings around it. This contradicts the notion of reincarnation, as in reincarnation or other metaphysical activities, a thing must really exist individually.

A witch wants to curse me. How her curse can find me?! On which basis, the curse decides that this specific set of coordinates in the space-time is victor? Does it find me based on me being alive? Well I am not completely alive, as many cells in me die and my skin and hair is totally dead on the outside. Does it decide so based my genetic code?! Well, that would be accurate, but a significant part of my body is actually filled with no-cellular tissues, which contain no DNA. So the curse only hits the cells and does not affect the other tissues? What about red blood cells which don't have DNAs?! And if I get more accurate, the curse needs to read the DNA of each of my cells and then decide where the cell membrane is, in order to search for the next cell!!

So, this is why vague and irrefutable notions such as soul have been invented. The duty of a soul is to represent the individuality of a thing as a whole and single entity. This is critical for meta-physical claims, as they need to be done on things that cannot be defined in any way, other than in our tricky and flawed minds.

But lets assume for one moment that soul does exist, and the above-mentioned curse actually hits one's soul. The new problem will be: How the soul is attached to or associated with someone?! Again, the soul itself cannot find a person, as there is no real boundaries saying that this is the person to be associated to... So the soul itself will be completely confused...

For example they say the earth has a soul, gaia... But what is earth exactly? How can Gaia know where and what exactly to represent as a single object?

Here comes god (or its modern alternatives)! God's duty is to solve every illogical and contradictory matter with an absolute magical power. God will tell the soul where to bind to, but how god himself can distinguish something that does NOT really exist?!
 
#9
On a second thought, I think my above comment also applies to telekinesis and any other superhero-ish activity. For example, the PYM particle wants to shrink the antman by getting his atoms closer to each other. Well, how the particle decides which atoms are his? What exactly is "he" to begin with? And the answer is not "whatever is in that suit, it is what to be shrunken", because (1) the irradiation of the pym particle to a ship shrinks the ship, so the suit is not the determinant. (2) Even if the suit sufficed for the pym particle to find its target (ie, the antman's atoms), it could not find where the suit ends.

The same holds for all other things such as teleporting etc.