Home Buddhist space Interreligious What about reincarnation ? – By the Roman Catholic Church

What about reincarnation ? – By the Roman Catholic Church


What about reincarnation ?

By the Roman Catholic Church

This word “reincarnation” belongs to the oriental universe, precisely to Hinduism and to Buddhism.
It is a way to answer the mystery of evil and of death.

Reincarnation is the believe that each individual can live several lives, in different forms, until the last deliverance, where there won’t be any more desire or suffering. In both these oriental religions, reincarnation is something tragic; the one who behaved bad, will be reincarnated in lower condition. The one who behaved good, with wisdom and righteousness, will be reincarnated in higher condition.

Nowadays, Reincarnation is seductive in many ways. As we cannot realise all our projects in one single life, is it not wonderful to think of all we will be able to do in another one! If our current life is not satisfying, is it not good to believe that the next one will be better ?

In the same way, who can pretend to be perfect in one single life ? To pass through several steps, from life to life, seems more realistic. We all know that we learn more from our mistakes and our failures.

But reincarnation brings several questions of both philosophical and religious order: What happens to our human consciousness when it passes from one individual to another? Going from life to life until the end of all desires, even until the extinction of all human will, doesn’t this mean denying the fact that it is our individual condition, existing above all in the free sentence of power to say “I”?

Reincarnation does not exist in the important monotheistic religions ( where there is only one God): Judaism, Christianity, Islam. Each one of these religions thinks that the human being is God’s image and his destiny is personal and unique. It is the understanding of the responsibility of being human, with the life it gives, facing the exercise of freedom. This is why a Christian cannot believe in reincarnation. His faith, is resurrection; total freedom from evil and from death.

God saves us once and for all, for free, without expecting us to reach perfection through our own strength. God doesn’t need to do it over and over again.

The death and the resurrection of Jesus, first among all humans, open fully the life of God for us.

Diocèse de Valence

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