Reincarnation is generally a religious concept that implies that upon a select few’s deaths, their soul, mind or conscious is transferred to a new born. It sounds like the stuff of fantasy, but some scientists do believe that it is a feasible concept.
Dr Ian Stevenson, former Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Virginia School of Medicine and former chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Neurology, dedicated the majority of his career to finding evidence of reincarnation, until his death in 2007.
Dr Stevenson claims to have found over 3,000 examples of reincarnation during his time which he shared with the scientific community.
In a study titled ‘Birthmarks and Birth Defects Corresponding to Wounds on Deceased Persons’, Dr Stevenson used facial recognition to analyse similarities between the claimant and their alleged prior incarnation, while also studying birth marks.
He wrote in his study: “About 35 per cent of children who claim to remember previous lives have birthmarks and/or birth defects that they (or adult informants) attribute to wounds on a person whose life the child remembers. The cases of 210 such children have been investigated.
“The birthmarks were usually areas of hairless, puckered skin; some were areas of little or no pigmentation (hypopigmented macules); others were areas of increased pigmentation (hyperpigmented nevi).
“The birth defects were nearly always of rare types. In cases in which a deceased person was identified the details of whose life unmistakably matched the child’s statements, a close correspondence was nearly always found between the birthmarks and/or birth defects on the child and the wounds on the deceased person.
“In 43 of 49 cases in which a medical document (usually a postmortem report) was obtained, it confirmed the correspondence between wounds and birthmarks (or birth defects).”
In a separate study, Dr Stevenson interviewed three children who claimed to remember aspects of their previous lives.
The children made 30-40 statements each regarding memories that they themselves had not experienced, and through verification, he found that up to 92 per cent of the statements were correct.
The article, published on Scientific Exploration, Dr Stevenson wrote: “It was possible in each case to find a family that had lost a member whose life corresponded to the subject’s statements.
“The statements of the subject, taken as a group, were sufficiently specific so that they could not have corresponded to the life of any other person.
“We believe we have excluded normal transmission of the correct information to the subjects and that they obtained the correct information they showed about the concerned deceased person by some paranormal process.”