Jim Tucker Transcript

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Jim Tucker Interview

RICK: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer. Buddha at the Gas Pump is an ongoing series of conversations with spiritually Awakening people, and conversations about topics relevant to spirituality and enlightenment and all that kind of stuff. We’ve done over 600 of them now. And if this is new to you, and you’d like to check out previous ones, please go to bat gap comm where you’ll see them all organized in several ways under the past interviews menu. This program is made possible through the support of appreciative listeners and viewers. So if you appreciate it and would like to help support it, there’s a PayPal button on every page of the website. And there’s also a page about alternatives to PayPal. My guest today is Dr. Jim Tucker. Dr. Tucker is the Bonner Lowry Professor of Psychiatry and neuro Behavioral Sciences at the University of Virginia. He is the director of the University of Virginia’s Division of Perceptual Studies where he is continuing the work of Ian Stevenson with children who report memories of previous lives. He is the author of before children’s memories of previous lives, a two in one edition of his books, life before life and return to life, which together have been translated into 20 languages, and which I downloaded from audible.com and listen to both of them in in their entirety over the previous week. It was very interesting. And I’ve mentioned Dr. Stevenson and Dr. Tucker, numerous times over the years on bat gap whenever the topic of reincarnation comes up. Because well, Jim will explain it in a minute, but Well, let me just ask you a question right now, Jim. I mean, is there anybody else in the world other than you two guys and Dr. Stevenson is deceased, but doing any significant research on reincarnation?

JIM: Well, there have been they’ve been several of us who have studied these cases that we’re going to talk about. One was Erlanger, Harrelson, who is quite prolific. He passed away last year. But there’s still Tonia Mills up in northern British Columbia, set one pest riccia. In India, Juergen Kyle was another person in Australia. So there are there are a few of us who have been sprinkled around the world studying these cases. Yeah,

RICK: it’s funny I was. I was I think, first question I should ask you. Well, now it will be the second is, you know what motivated you to do this? It’s obviously something that is really meaningful to you, you wouldn’t be devoting your life to it? Or is it your full time gig? Or do you also have other responsibilities at UVA, and this is just sort of a sideline?

JIM: Well, I definitely have other responsibilities, but it’s more than a sideline. Okay. So yeah, I’m a child psychiatrist. So I see patients and supervise the clinic and you know, help the residents and the fellows learn how to do child psychiatry. But then a significant part of my time is spent doing this research. Yeah. As far as my motivation for it goes as a bit of a long story. But I became intrigued by this question, which I guess we all are, to some extent, is there life after death. And I was here in Charlottesville, Virginia, and discovered the writings of Ian Stevenson, who, you know, had gone from being chairman of the Department of Psychiatry, here in the 1960s, to stepping down as chairman and spending decades studying this question, in particular, these children talking about a past life. So I was motivated by trying to answer the question, or explore the question of life after death, but also struck by kind of the serious minded nature of his work, that it was analytical just like you would be trying to explore and analyze anything else. And that really appealed to me.

RICK: A question came in a little while ago, from Anna Suitland, SCA in Warsaw, Poland, who hopefully is watching right now. And this is very much along the lines of one of the first things I wanted to discuss with you, so I’m going to ask it right away. She says the cases gathered by Ian Stevenson and yourself are very strong. They definitely prove, if not reincarnation, then something very similar to it. Why do you think science still ignores such a powerful and suggestive evidence? A serious approach to this could add so much to psychiatry, cognitive sciences, medicine, genetics, biology, etc, to humanity?

JIM: Well, first, I suppose a little bit of a disclaimer. So we wouldn’t say that our work proves reincarnation or life after death. You know, science is about accumulating evidence or data and determining the best explanation with that. That being said, I think the best explanation for our cases is that some of these children do actually have memories of a past life. Why are people slow to accept that? Well, because it undermines the basic tenets of many people’s understanding of reality. You in science in particular, the the thought is that everything emanates from the physical, that the physical essentially is all there is. And that consciousness just kind of was an accidental thing that that our brains produce a sense of consciousness as through evolution. But that ultimately, everything comes down to particles and waves and so forth. Well, this really challenges that to the core, if you decide that when the brain dies, and decays and everything else, that there’s still this consciousness piece that is continuing on. And that gets pretty hard to explain if you’re not open to there being more than physical. Yeah.

RICK: I mean, didn’t quantum mechanics kind of undermine that worldview a century ago?

JIM: Well, it certainly shows that reality is a heck of a lot more complicated than what our day to day experience tells us. And you know, that that’s kind of a huge topic there. But the, the idea that observation is necessary for events to occur, is certainly been demonstrated, or is a very reasonable explanation for the things that have been observed, or determined on the quantum level, meaning the smallest particles smallest level of reality, it does look that things don’t exactly exist until they are observed. And that holds true not just for the present, but actually the past. And then, you know, it gets we get into pretty funky territory pretty quickly with that. But ultimately, you can surmise, as Max Planck, the founder of quantum theory did, that consciousness is fundamental. And that matter is derived from consciousness. And if, you know, once you’re open to that, then it certainly in our cases, seem quite reasonable, right? That consciousness is primary. And for whatever reason, it has continued on from one brain and somehow become attached to another. But But if if consciousness is at the core, then what’s going on at the physical realm wouldn’t determine the beginning or end of consciousness?

RICK: Yeah. A good friend of mine, her mother just had a stroke. And she’s in pretty bad shape, I guess. And this, this friend is a deeply spiritual person. And you know, naturally, they’re all them. Human emotions one would expect to have when one’s mother is apparently dying. But, you know, her deep spirituality brings a whole different quality to the situation than if, you know, she just thought, well, this body is my mother. And when this body dies, that’s the end of my mother. So it seems to me that, you know, if reincarnate well, yeah, it seems to me that if reincarnation were really a prevalent understanding in the world, society would be quite different in many ways, and individuals be quite different. But then I think of Asia and you spent a lot of time in Asia where reincarnation is the predominant belief. Do you see a difference in the way that’s Asian societies function because of that belief, then Western societies where it’s not?

JIM: Yeah, well, that’s a good question. And Ian Stevenson had a story about that. He said he was over, I think it was in India talking with a mock and being maybe a little bit too enthusiastic about the potential for his work. And the monk said, over here, reincarnation is accepted as fact, but we have just as many rogues and criminals. And, you know, we’re all affected both by sort of our baggage From the past, but also we have a natural, I think inclination to look at the short run and the immediate benefit of things. And, you know, being the product of evolution, I mean, we are both, perhaps spiritual beings, but also certainly physical beings, and being the product of evolution, evolution, rewards. individual beings who look after themselves and look to stay alive and do things that are selfish, and that that’s an aspect that we all have to continue to deal with, even hopefully, as we become less selfish and become more spiritual.

RICK: has, has this work? made you more spiritual? Has it, for instance, inspired you to take up a spiritual practice of some sort?

JIM: Well, I would say yes to the first part, but unfortunately, no to the second. So I, you know, I view myself has been in the category of spiritual but not religious. And, I mean, I wish that I meditated every day, I have at different points that I haven’t been able to keep it up. But even so, I think it has made a difference for me, I mean, I think I have a better appreciation of that we’re all in this together, there’s, you know, there’s this surface spiritual or consciousness, piece of reality that we are all a part of, then we all share more than what it seems like with our separateness in the physical world that below that, you know, sort of like islands in the sea below that they’re all connected. And that, I think, seems to be that way here. So I, you know, I hope as I have matured, that I kind of become a better person. And I certainly hope that I treat everyone I encounter with respect, and I think it’s work makes it easier to do.

RICK: Yeah, I mean, I’ve talked to people who feel like that when you die, you’re dead. That’s it. And it’s polar opposite of my perspective, but they say, well, it doesn’t really bother me that much. Because if I’m completely if I completely cease to exist, they won’t bother me. I won’t be around to be bothered by that. But my my view is that, you know, life is a continuum. And there’s this sort of, we could say, spectrum of evolution, that it’s possible to ascend, you know, to move upward on, and that you can’t accomplish it all in one life, and that the name of the game is really to, you know, to accomplish it to evolve as a soul. And that, you know, if you’re on a journey someplace, let’s say, and your, your car breaks down, you might need to get a new car, but it’s still the same journey. And of course, that’s just one of many metaphors is sometimes referred, you know, the Bhagavad Gita talks about changing your clothing and putting on fresh clothes, but you still continue on living.

JIM: Yeah, and I think, right, even with that journey that we want, it comes down to, in a way is each individual moment and being present in each moment. So in a way, I’m kind of sympathetic to the idea that whether we continue on or not, in some ways, doesn’t matter in the sense that we should just fully experience every moment that we can and help others fully experience and you know, that that’s kind enough. I mean, I don’t know if it’s acceptance or resignation, but I, I see, I’m not gonna figure it all out, at least in this lifetime. And you know, that’s kind of okay so, you know, what, we’ll find out one day or we won’t find out one day but but either way, we’ve got this lifetime, at least, to work on growth, and, and work on helping others with their growth and making the most of it.

RICK: That’s true. I mean, whether or not we have future lives might not have that much impact on the way we live this one if if we make the best of this one. You know, and as you said with that monk in India, even in societies where people think there are multiple lives, they can still act like creeps. You know, so I don’t know what they think maybe they don’t believe in it. Or maybe they think well, I’m just gonna grab all the gusto I can get and face the consequences later or whatever.

JIM: was just like in the middle ages for You know, people, many people in the Western world believed absolutely in heaven and hell, and yet, they did some truly horrific things sometimes in the name of Yeah, of those beliefs. So just belief of something in and of itself doesn’t necessarily make you a better person. Right.

RICK: Anyway, as you said earlier, it’s not that you have proven this. And I think, probably most scientists in most fields are very leery of the word proof anyway, you know, it’s science is a matter of continuing to accumulate evidence, which could eventually be falsified or, you know, changed in different ways. But we do gain greater and greater confidence in certain things. You know, I mean, we’re not, even though we’ve changed our understanding of the way gravity works. We don’t doubt its existence or something.

JIM: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I mean, the, again, more evidence is certainly more persuasive than less evidence. Yeah. And, you know, I think with our cases, over the decades, we’ve now accumulated enough cases and enough evidence to say that one may conclude, based on the evidence that consciousness does contain that these kids have memories of a life from the past. Yeah,

RICK: a question came in from a fellow named Victor Anderson in Norway, relates to what you just said, How can memories of a past life be stored in a brain that has only existed and experience the current life? Are there any theories or hypotheses around this?

JIM: Well, I think it is a great question, I think it would suggest, to me anyway, that you have to go to serve a higher realm that there’s this consciousness that exist outside of any of the brains, and that it impacts the developing brain. So you know, memories kind of a funny thing, and you look at even with this live, I don’t have any memories of when I was a baby. But I certainly have those experiences. But but the the memory has not matched up, one to one. But beyond my individual consciousness, this time around, and my individual brain, what I would pause it is that there’s sort of this, I have this larger consciousness, that can experience multiple lives, and at times can impact the brain leading to these memories, even though it’s, it’s not as simple as just a memory being stored in your brain.

RICK: Yeah. I mean, computers are a good metaphor for that, you know, the way we have stuff on our computers, but then we also back it up to the cloud and can download it from the cloud, onto a different computer and so on. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. Well, let’s get a little bit more concrete. Through the course of this conversation, I’ll have you tell stories of several children that you’ve worked with? What would be a nice one to start with, really knock people’s socks off? How about that kid? Oh, you go ahead you choose. That’s all right. I was gonna suggest the kid who was a who crashed his plane on Iwo Jima or nearby.

JIM: Right, that was the one I was going. Okay. So that’s probably the most well known case, actually, certainly the most well known American case. So she kind of wants to the full story. So it’s a little boy named James Leininger. Was not little anymore. Actually. He’s a young adult, but he was a little boy, who was the son of these, this couple in Louisiana, and who had absolutely no belief in reincarnation. In fact, his father is quite opposed to the idea until his son started seeming to remember a past life. So when James was around, his second birthday is to he started having these horrific nightmares multiple times a week in which he would kick his legs up in the air and scream, airplane crash on fire, a little man can’t get out. And during the day, he would talk some about how he had been a pilot who had been shut down by the Japanese and said how he flew his plane flew off of a ship. So his parents asked him the name of that ship and he said Natoma, which was kind of a weird guess for US aircraft carrier but his father then when and did a internet search maybe before Google, but did an internet search and eventually came across this information on the USS Natoma Bay, which was a US aircraft carrier that was stationed in the Pacific during World War Two. And James also gave various details of the crash how his plane had been shot in the engine that had crashed in the water and quickly sank. And one time his parents asked him well, several times his parents asked him who he was then and he would always just say, me or James, which they didn’t make anything up. But one time he said that his they asked him who else was there, and he said, Jack, Jack Larson. And this was all when he was still two. And then clearly, he had strong verbal skills, which many of these children do. And we know from testing that they they tend to be quite verbal. They don’t want to use two and a half. His father bought a book on Iwo Jima to get to his own father, James, his grandfather, and they were looking through it one day, when James pointed at the picture of D, which humans said, My plane got shut down there, it got shut down there, daddy, and his father said, what and he said, That’s where my plane was shot down. So then his dad realized that the USS Natoma Bay was, in fact, involved in the Iwo Jima operation. Eventually, when James is four and a half, his dad went to the Tomah beggar union and learned that in fact, there was a Jack Larson on the ship and Jack Larson was there during the Iwo Jima operation. And he also learned that there was only one pilot from this ship who was killed during that Ujima operation. This young man from Pennsylvania named James Houston. So that man if if James Leininger was remembered a past life, it had to be Houston’s because he was the only pilot killed the ship. And what we see is that changes statements match up perfectly. For Houston’s instant he was a pilot on the USS until obey, his plane did get hit in the engine crashed in the water quickly sank. And on the day that he was killed the pilot of the plane next to his was Jack Larson. So you have a case like that, along with a lot of behaviors were changed. It’s just fascinated with planes and had seemingly uncanny knowledge about planes as well as various details about life on the ship that really become very hard to explain through some sort of ordinary means. And you know, this was a guy who died 50 years before James is born in another part of the country, it seems impossible that he would have learned about it through just overhearing. So you’re left with what seems to be a case where a child had memories of past life.

RICK: Yeah. And though you’ve only covered some of them, I know they’re he mentioned the Corsair as a kind of plan. He had flown and, and some other things.

JIM: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. Kind of hit the highlights. But you’re right. Of course, there was was another good one. Houston, he wasn’t actually flying a quarter on the day he was killed, but he had definitely flown when he was part of the squadron tested it for the Navy. And it was a big deal. Yeah. And James talked about how he had fun Of course,

RICK: yeah, his two year old kid who never otherwise heard of a Corsair

JIM: that’s, that’s right. Yeah.

RICK: I’ve interviewed quite a few people who, you know, like Dean Raiden, and David Lorimer and Rupert Sheldrake, and, and quite a few others who explore these kind of areas. And not only reincarnation, but near death experiences and psychic phenomenon, you know, various other things. And, you know, they’re generally ignored by the greater scientific community. In fact, David Lorimer is was involved in setting up something called the Galileo foundation because of the way Galileo was ignored by people in his day who wouldn’t even look through his telescope because they refuse to believe that what he saw through it could actually be there so they weren’t gonna bother. And you know, Dean Raiden talks about, you know, people reacting that way, I’m not gonna look at your research because it couldn’t be true. So that that really seems kind of unscientific to me. Then you mentioned something in one of your books, there was the word cuss consilience. Or maybe this might have been in one of those YouTube videos. I was into and it was, you know about the conservative nature and the of the scientific process and resistance to change. And that actually has good and bad qualities to it, it has its advantages. Maybe you could elaborate on that a little bit.

JIM: Well, that’s right. So yeah, consilience is the idea that sort of new material gets accepted as its fits in with what’s already known. And EO Wilson wrote a book, I think, with that title, sort of talking about that. The good side of that is we don’t jump willy nilly with with our understandings of how the world works. The downside is that sometimes a lot of material accumulates, that goes against the current belief system that gets ignored until finally can’t be ignored anymore. So that then leads to a paradigm shift. And you know, this, all this kind of work in Paris psychology, and then you know, reincarnation near death experiences, they all would essentially require a paradigm shift to to really incorporate them and the understandings of reality.

RICK: Yeah, I was a big fan of Thomas Kuhns book, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions back in the day. And I’m by no means a scientist, but I just kind of took a college course on philosophy of science. And I just think it’s, it’s so interesting, the kind of the way knowledge progresses. And there is, you know, the resistance to it. I mean, there’s so many historical examples, and even current examples. It’s just fascinating. But maybe there’s a

JIM: Yeah, so So in the meantime, it means there a lot of people who are open to this, yeah, but that’s okay. I mean, well, we’re putting it out there. And then people who are open to it can hopefully read it and learn something from it. And, you know, for the people who aren’t well, okay, I mean, that they can believe what they want to believe. And, you know, we’ll keep trying to learn what we can.

RICK: Yeah. You mentioned Max Planck, it might have been him. I forget one of those guys who said that science progress is through a series of funerals.

JIM: Yeah, yeah. That. Yeah, progressive was the one line I’ve heard is one funeral. Right? Yeah. That whole thing may be slightly apocryphal, I think that, quote, probably evolved kind of out of something similar. Statement of, yeah, I mean, partly science advances, because people with the old ideas die off, and the younger people tend to be open to newer things to reconsidering things. So you know, you may be a target graduate students as opposed to full professors, if you’re trying to get people to really consider something. Yeah.

RICK: But it’s, it’s funny in a way because I mean, you know, there are so many people working on so many things, and they get into very, very specific niches, you know, of studying some tiny little such such and such in biology or physics or some other area. You know, these things may or may not have any significance whatsoever, sometimes they do. But, you know, if, in fact, we reincarnate, if if consciousness is fundamental and material universe is emergent from that, that’s huge. I mean, it’s a radical shift in our understanding of the way the universe works. You think it would be on the front burner of, of scientific inquiry, and yet it’s, and yet it’s not?

JIM: Well, maybe it’s a little too big. Yeah, it’s a lot to swallow. Yeah. But you know, Ian Stevenson said, he’d rather be 90% sure of something important than 100% sure of something unimportant. And, you know, this is not controlled laboratory science looking at, you know, some little particle or what I mean, that can be very important work. But yeah, yeah, it is, it is looking at kind of the big picture and trying to see what we can learn about

RICK: in one of the videos or listen to your colleague, Edward Kelly was talking about physicalism, or materialism versus the idea that consciousness is fundamental. And he played that he thought that that had major implications for kind of like, even the survival of the human race. I mean, do you agree with that you feel like climate change, and many of the other problems that we face are somehow ramification ramifications of our misunderstanding of the deeper nature of reality.

JIM: Well, I’d have to give that some thought to be honest. But I do think that recognizing the value of consciousness or the primacy of it leads to a more optimistic, hopeful, why you being so hopefully that would make us less selfish and you know, Hopefully destroy the planet less. We focus less on our immediate needs and more on on kind of the bigger picture. And you know, if it helps us be less materialistic, then I mean in an economic sense, not in a scientific sense. You know, it’s been less than whatever use up the earth materials less than, than that would certainly be great. Yeah.

RICK: Here’s a question from my wife Irene. She said children are the ones that usually come in with memories of a past life, but usually forget them as they grow up. But sometimes adults develop memories of previous incarnations. Like I sent you that thing about Christian sunburn? Who am I going to interview in a month or so who at the age of 30, all of a sudden had this recollection? You want to speak about that?

JIM: Yeah, I mean, there are several reasons why we focus on children. And one is that as far as we can tell, those are typically the people who have memories of a past life. And we there are exceptions, like you say that through meditation, or through psychedelics or whatever, that people, adults may develop memories of past life. But for the most part, it seems to young B young kids who largely bring the memories with them, and we once they get verbal enough to describe them, they do describe them. So the average age when a child starts talking about a past life is 35 months, so that, you know, they can be quite young. But one advantage of that is that, you know, a two or three year old has not read up on World War Two and the USS Natoma Bay, or is it within an adult, you don’t know that and and, you know, if you look at like hypnotic regression, for instance, which were quite skeptical of for a number of reasons, but one is that sometimes people will come up with these details from a quote a quote from a past life. And then there have been times where they then been re hypnotized and asked where the material came from. And it was from books that read 20 years before and had completely forgotten about this. We are all exposed to a tremendous amount of information, I mean, even before the internet, tremendous amount of information in our lives. So it makes it harder to be certain that someone has not gotten that information through some sort of ordinary maze, they may be completely sincere. But during meditation or hypnosis or whatever, that information gets put into a story that then that them feels like a memory of a past life. Yeah.

RICK: The only memory I ever thought I might have might have been a past life was I was on a long meditation course, a six month course. And I had a dream in which I was running in a panic along a beach at night, and there was this rumble of jet of bombers or something flying overhead analysis running through my life. And then I kind of woke up in a cold sweat and feeling like oh, wow, I just went through something so heavy. I thought I wonder if I was killed in World War Two. That’s the only thing I’ve ever had.

JIM: Yeah, and you know, they actually one of my books, the I think the second one, I did write about a couple of dream cases, just like that. But they were one was having to do with a tsunami. But it was, I mean, with one dream, you think, Well, you know, maybe maybe that was a glimpse of a past life. But with these cases is what people had repeatedly for. Yes, yeah. And again, starting actually in childhood. So that you think what something’s going on there. Yeah. Now, you know, like with your dream is completely unverifiable. And you have no way to know, but emotionally, it may feel I mean, it may I got you what emotion tells us as well. And you know, there’s some times where people do have a dream or something. It really feels like it was something extraordinary.

RICK: Felt like a big release to like I just released the the stress of that death or that experience. I felt kind of lighter afterwards. You mentioned hypnotic regression. I’ve read I read both of Michael Newton’s books many years ago before I started this show. And, you know, I found them interesting and compelling. I mean, one thing that was kind of interesting, or was that there seemed to be such a, what would be the word such an agreement among such a variety of people that he hypnotized, and he hypnotized? Well over 1000, I guess, but they all kind of sketched out a similar territory. And, you know, then in his books, he kind of stitched it all together and gave a general outline of what he felt might be happening between lives. I presume you’ve read those books

JIM: a little bit. I’ve got journey of souls and actually several of us underwent new I like hypnosis, hypnosis at one point for my own self, and this, maybe through no fault of the technique, but more just me. I didn’t feel like I experienced anything that was not coming from my mind. That was my mind was not creating. But that’s not to say obviously that other people can’t have meaningful experiences. But I will say that, you know, if you’re open to unconscious connections between us, the expectations that the hypnotist brings to the session, they will impact what the person experiences, I mean Sonos by accident, like leading them on, obviously, but also in that state, that sort of the boundaries get make it more blurred than usual. So you know, you get a telepathy kind of thing for the the hypnotist does affect the hypnotic subject even when there is they’re certainly trying not to. But in any event, I mean, I’m not trying to discount his work. I’m not an expert in it. But, you know, I think there are reasons to be cautious about it.

RICK: Yeah. Okay, so many questions I could ask you. We’ll just keep poking along here. All right. I think I’ll ask another question from a listener first. And this actually was about what I was almost tempted to ask you just now this is from Carol McCracken, in Bloomington, Indiana. She asks, How many of your interviews recalled the period they experienced between lives? And if so, are there any similarities in their description is what we’re talking about?

JIM: Yeah, about 20% of the kids will talk about events between lives. And they can bury some of them describe us essentially seems like a near death experience. So where they’re floating above their bodies, they may then see other beings or guides or that sort of thing. Some describe go into another room like heaven that the American kids may use toward heaven. And then some talk about either watching their parents or choosing their parents or being led to their parents to then lead the next life. And, you know, we published a paper years ago now, sort of comparing this phenomenon with near death experiences. And what we see is that there are a lot of similarities, particularly in sort of the transcendent kind of experiences that people report now, people have near death experiences often kind of reach a point of no return and are either told they have to go back or choose to return to life. Obviously, that doesn’t happen. In our case of childhood memories and pesar, because they didn’t go back, they you know, they died, and they’ve been seemingly, were reborn, but there’s certainly a lot of similarities there. And sometimes they will give verifiable details. So there are cases where they will describe the previous funeral accurately that there was one case in Thailand, where the little girl complained, because her ashes had been scattered rather than buried the way she wanted them to be. And that the previous person was a woman who studied at the temple and wanted her ashes buried under the Bodhi tree there. Well, when her daughter went to bury them, the root system of the tree was so extensive, she couldn’t bury them. So she scattered them instead. And James liner, you know, that we were talking about a minute ago. Is is verifiable on the other hand of coming back, because he one day told his dad that he was glad that he had picked him to be his father. And as that as some wandering man, and he explained how he had seen his parents at a big pink hotel and Hawaii eating on the beach and decided he wanted to be born to them. Well, before he was born, his parents took a trip to WISE data to big pink hotel, and on the last night had dinner on the beach. And that was his during that trip that they began trying to conceive. So they didn’t actually get pregnant then but the intention started then. And that was the time that James seemingly had had observations of that.

RICK: Yeah, I know that some people in the Indian tradition and probably some other of those Eastern traditions say that we do choose our parents that some some say that you know, we’re kind of a sit well, Michael Newton would say this kind of thing that were assisted by some wise guides or elders or something on the other side to help us decide what would be the most appropriate life to live next No. Do any of the any of your cases provide evidence for that?

JIM: Um, yeah, make some kids will report similar things. I mean, not necessarily service setting for panel guides and kind of mapping out your next life. But But I will say also, I mean, there are some kids who seem so miserable in the families they’re in, it doesn’t seem like they chose them. I mean, there are some kids who just complained bitterly that and want to be taken back to their previous family and back to their previous lives, basically. But it may well be that the level of control that an individual has is not necessarily the same, from person to person, that for whatever reason, some individuals may have more control over the process and others.

RICK: Yeah, people might ask, Well, why would you choose to be born in a Syrian refugee camp or in the barrios of, you know, Rio de Janeiro or something in these horrible circumstances, but then he, we get into the whole karma thing. And you know, what? Whether there’s an evolutionary agenda to the universe, and whether suffering in difficult circumstances can actually be conducive to our evolution in some way? I don’t know if we want to speculate about that here or not.

JIM: Yeah, I mean, certainly, there’s something to be said for the idea that we, you know, again, more resilience by going through stressors. But you know, with this some of the horrible suffering that some people experience, it’s a little hard to say, there’s a whole lot of meaning there. I mean, I think, yeah, it may well be sort of a combination of things. There may be sort of a naturalistic process that that, you know, unfortunately, some people, unfortunate things happen to them. And there’s not necessarily a plan or a cause for it. Even though in the bigger picture, it may well be that there is growth, that can happen through difficult circumstances.

RICK: Yeah. This is just a matter of belief on my part, but but I feel like all is well and wisely put, and there are no mistakes, no accidents, and that there’s a kind of a divine orchestration of the universe. And it might be hard to understand, from a human perspective, it might seem cruel, you know, and, and you can’t blame somebody for doubting the existence of God when considering what happened in the Holocaust, for instance, but But I mean, you know, at some point, the earth will become a red giant, the Sun will become a red giant, the earth will be a molten blob. Long before that happens, life will get very difficult on Earth, and everyone will die. And yet, you know, the, in the big scheme of things, the death of stars is necessary for our very existence. So it’s kind of a cosmic perspective you can take.

JIM: Yeah, well, I hope you’re right. And I hope that there are no pointless events that everything has meaning. It can be awfully hard to see that and some of the things people go through, but I certainly hope,

RICK: yeah, you have to really zoom out and try to take a God’s eye view as best you can. And, of course, you know, I mean, I’m not hammering this is some kind of belief that one should adopt, I just find makes sense to me. All right. So here’s a question from Jay in Victoria, British Columbia, have there been any children who have talked about future events that have come true?

JIM: Well as sort of the larger question, which I think he’s asking is, do some people, some kids remember a future life? And the answer is not as far as we can tell. I mean, none of them talk about, you know, whatever, flying around in spaceships or, you know, whatever. But I will say, you know, with, we have plenty of cases where a child talks about a life, but then no one’s ever able to verify that it actually matches somebody who lived in the past. And in that case, especially in places for things change slowly, it’s conceivable that a child has remembered a future life. And you just don’t know it, because you’re not able to track it down. But there’s no evidence of that.

RICK: Yeah. You know, it could be I mean, what do you think about this, it could be that a majority of children at a very early age, remember their past lives, but either they’re too young to talk about it, or they talk about it, and they’re ignored, or something along those lines, and then they forget, I mean, who knows? Maybe when we’re a week old, we’re like, really clearly cognizing our past life, but obviously, we can’t talk about it.

JIM: Yeah, so yeah, I mentioned that these kids tend to be very verbal. And I’m going to have good verbal skills. And it may well be that talking about these images that they have in their minds, kind of solidify the images in their minds, and then they get you get sort of the complete story of the past life. Whereas with other kids that they’re not able to verbalize things, they have these images, but they kind of fade before that the kids are really able to process them. But it’s not to say we have evidence of that happens. I mean, the, the, you know, our cases don’t really say whether we all have had past lives or not. And it may be that we do and either we don’t remember, or we don’t remember long enough to tell people about it. But it may also be that these are exceptions that even if there is survival consciousness, it wouldn’t mean that we’d all come back here necessarily, that we may have another kind of experience after we die.

RICK: Yeah. Well, that’s a nice scientific way of putting it. My feeling is that we do actually have multiple lives. But that’s just my belief or feeling. I don’t have the kind of access to scientific methods that you do. But also, I think we need to take into consideration that the Earth isn’t the only place in the universe where we could live. Not only would would there be perhaps trillions of other habitable planets throughout the universe, but then there are all these other levels and dimensions and, you know, such as whatever it is people go to between lives, and there could be many such levels or subtle dimensions that we don’t ordinarily perceive. So

JIM: we absolutely so yeah, I mean, again, I think my own personal belief is that consciousness does survive and continue on, but whether it continues on here in another life on this planet, in my own mind, is an open question.

RICK: Yeah. Yeah, I was once with a spiritual teacher, and he was pondering about talking about immortality. And he said, you know, if we’re interested in immortality, there must be better bodies than these in which to do it. Right, yeah.

JIM: And I mean, as far as immortality goes, so you think if consciousness can kind of step out of this space time, in what is immortal meaning Exactly. But a lot of things to think about.

RICK: Here’s another question from Irene. She has good ones. Some amazingly gifted children have highly developed skills, and only two or three years old, like playing the piano, thinking Mozart here, on composing well are better than someone who studied all their life, they may not have memories of a past life. But is this not a good indicator of bringing a previous life development into the current one?

JIM: Well, it’s certainly hard to explain those cases. I mean, you look at some prodigies. And Mozart’s obviously, good example, because he was incredibly skilled at a very early age. And it may be a mixture of environment with something else. I mean, in Mozart’s case, his father was was a music teacher. But that doesn’t mean young three year olds were composing symphonies or whatever, my grandma

RICK: music teacher, I didn’t get very far.

JIM: So I will say we don’t have necessarily to or we’re not aware of prodigies who have recalled a past life with those skills. So you know, Mozart, who remember the golf guy, if this you before? Well, that’s right, I was gonna say that that’s sort of the closest that I’ve come to. Well, as a kid who seemed extraordinarily skilled at golf at a very early age, or around the time of three or four, and I’ve seen videos of him at that age or four or five, and he had a smooth swing, and he talked about a past life and then a better long story, but his dad was going through the channels on cable when they didn’t even know they had the Golf Channel and his parents weren’t golfers. But they hit it and his son got all excited and a vigil I said, how he had been Bobby Jones, who, for people who don’t a golfer was quite a famous golfer,

RICK: he I’d heard him and I’m not into golf. Yeah.

JIM: For a long time ago, not something typically, you know, three or four year old would hear about, and this kid remained extremely talented. I haven’t heard from the dad in the last few years, but I mean, he was scores of golf tournaments as he was growing up. So that is one where, whether you call it a prodigy he was extremely talented at an extremely early age with no clear explanation for how he was so talented, and he did recall memories of the past life with that skill.

RICK: Yeah. And then I should mention it in your books. When you tell these stories, you sometimes go on for a whole chapter or the better part of a chapter with all kinds of details. So we’re just kind of, you know, touching some of the highlights here. But if people find this interesting, they, they could find much more detail in your books. I had a friend years ago who claimed to have been Abraham Lincoln and his past life. And one of his proofs was that he had a bump on the back of his head. But that does lead us into a whole thing about Birthmarks and Birth Defects and various other markers of people, you know, who might had a gunshot wound or some other thing showing up again and their next body?

JIM: Yeah. Yeah, that’s right. So that he and sort of discovered that phenomenon of where kids would be born with birthmarks or full birth defects that match wounds, usually the fatal wounds on the body of the previous person. And he studied spent years studying a lot of these cases in the years more writing them all up and eventually published this two volume set of over 200 Such cases and the set is 2000 pages long. There is a synopsis version for people who are interested but you know, some pretty remarkable stories or examples or pictures, frankly, of these, like girl with very normal fingers. She recalled the life of a guy who got his fingers chopped off as he was been murdered. There was one case where the children mirrored the life of a man who had been killed by a shotgun blast to the side of his head. And this kid was born with just a stub for an ear and underdeveloped right side of his face. He enlisted 18 cases where kids were born with double birthmarks, to birthmarks ones that match both the entrance wound and the exit wound on the body of a gunshot victim. So they’re, you know, they pose all kinds of questions about how that can be, right? I mean, even if you believe in reincarnation, well, why would a wound on one body then show up in the next life. And he explored that some and I write about it summon in my books, where we know that images sometimes can have to grow like infinite consciousness, and can sometimes have physical effects so that they’re, well, one example of the stigmata these people who deeply in prayer, then develop what look like the wounds of Christ on their bodies. Or I mentioned hypnosis, with hypnosis, sometimes people can be under hypnosis can be say, touched with the finger and told this a Burning Ember and they’ll develop a burn. So I mean, their their consciousness are the images in consciousness can certainly have physical effects, where the consciousness continues after traumatic death. And then the the memories of that death, then perhaps can affect the developing fetus. So instead of a camera, temporary mark from hypnosis, you get a Corona effect as it affects the developing fetus.

RICK: Yeah, let’s talk about this a little bit more. I mean, there’s the whole question of, you know, what is the vehicle through which we, which carries us from one body to the next there, there might even be a 50 year lapse between lives or whatever? Or it might be a shorter one. But, you know, what, what is the container for our personality between lives? And I’d like to introduce and have you comment on the notion of subtle body which I’m going to show a graphic on the screen here, which I’m afraid you can’t see. But it’s there’s a term Kosha in Sanskrit, which refers to five sheaths and were said to be like Russian dolls in the sense that we have the sort of gross body that we’ll see, which is called the food sheath or the Annamaya Kosha. And then there’s a there’s subtle ones, I won’t go through all the Sanskrit and all but there’s a vital breath or prana sheath mental sheath. Viviana Maya or intellect sheath and then ultimately the anandamide are bliss sheath. And it said that when the the Annamaya Kosha, or the food body dies, then these other sheets just carry on without the food body. And then we exist in those bodies with we can’t function in the gross physical realm anymore, obviously. But we function in subtler realms for a while until we again take on a full body gross body and and that the subtle bodies sort of retain all the some scars or impressions that we’ve accumulated through our various lives. And that’s why so much, you know, carries over into the next life. Any comments on that? I know, it’s rather speculative, perhaps. But um, what do you think? Is that intriguing to you?

JIM: Yeah, I mean, those sorts of conceptualizations obviously have been for 1000s of years, people have had those sorts of things. And, you know, there can be real value to them. And I started, take it kind of, I guess, the one step, or sort of the view from 10,000 feet or whatever they, I mean, my, I don’t get into those specifics. For me, for myself, as I think about it, I think there is this continuation. And it seems to be something where not just that it retains the memories of the past life that can actually experience new things and learn new things. And, you know, with the intermission memories we were just talking about, so that there is a active life force of some sort that is continuing on. But you know, the different shades and so forth, I’m going to get many people find that very valuable. I just focus more on the fact that there is something like that, yeah, that continues on, I think

RICK: we can take something like that as an hypothesis, you know, that could possibly be explored. And, you know, those of the tradition that came up with that sort of explanation, consider themselves to have been exploring it for a few 1000 years through a kind of, you know, more introspective method, you know, mystics and Yogi’s and so on who who do do this kind of inner research and presumably, are actually coming upon some kind of experiential verification for such things rather than just speculating.

JIM: Right? Yeah, I agree. I mean, again, that there may be great wisdom and value to those things. So, okay, that’s great.

RICK: We’re jumping around a little bit, because we’re getting a lot of good questions. So here’s one that came in from Ron gang in Kibbutz who raised him in Israel, I understand that you have reservations about past life data obtained through hypnosis that we were just talking about. I have read Dr. Brian Weiss’s first three books in which he has treated the traumas of 1000s of patients through hypnotic regression. Or if you’re familiar with this, I would like to hear your comments on his work.

JIM: Sure, so yeah, I mean, I’ve read several Dr. Weiss’s books. And I certainly believe that hypnotic regression can be therapeutic. And when he talks about the cases where it is therapeutic. So whether people are actually accessing life that they lived in the past is another question. Yeah. So hypnosis, even for memories of this life, tends to be very unreliable tool, many of their times where it’s remarkably accurate, and, you know, people recall, license plate numbers of crime scenes or whatever. But there are a lot of times where, essentially, the mind fills in the blanks. And then once that happens, it’s very hard for somebody to know if it was an actual memory, or if it was something that got created during hypnosis. There are very few not zero, but there are very few cases where there’s documented verification, that the memories the person had came from an actual person who lived before, there was not someone who’s well known that again, the people might have just learned about through ordinary means. And the some of that is, you know, if you’re recalling an ancient life in a room or whatever I mean, you know, it’s unverifiable, essentially. So you know, maybe you shouldn’t hold it against them but there’s just there plenty of reasons to think that have not occurred aggression is unreliable and not much reason to think that they actually are past liars. But again with a with a good therapist and somebody like Dr. Weiss and other people who follow his work i If it can be useful to people and cure phobias or you know, whatever it is that then by all means, use it. But I’m a little bit unsure about when people and I think Brian Weiss is one of these is what doesn’t really matter if his past life as long as it’s therapeutic. One one way it doesn’t matter. But on the other if it looks like your service, okay, well, we’re doing past life regression, but it doesn’t matter if it’s really a past life, but it seems to me that’s a little bit of a cop out. I mean, it’s If you’re claiming it’s past life, then seems to make matters that it is but but again, people can be helped by there are also times where people are not skilled therapists, they may not be therapists at all, they may just have sort of past life, that not certification or something. And then I think it has the potential for harm as well as for better

RICK: spiritual teacher once said that he wants to dissuade people from trying to even look into past lives, because he felt that it’s a lesser developed state, you know, just don’t bother about it, just focus on the life you’re living and proceed from here.

JIM: I mean, I even though past lives, or what I research, I agree with that, in many ways. I mean, the present moment is what you know, was important. And certainly, you know, there are people who get really involved in trying to sort out their past lives wanting to, you know, work on this.

RICK: I remember as I recall, Michael Newton was, I guess, maybe he was doing past life regression. And then he accidentally, there have been cases where hypnotists have just been trying to regress people to childhood or something. And then they go beyond that. And next thing, you know, they’re in past life. I think in Newton’s cases, I recall and you can correct me, he was doing past life regression, but all sudden, he found people kind of glomming on to between life period. And so then he specialized in that.

JIM: Yeah, yeah. And I think Brian why satisfies more of the former were his first patient with many lives, many masters, his first book, for he stumbled into by accident, then he had regressed the patient, because then suddenly, she’s talking about a past life. And he’s to be credited that he was open enough to, to go with it and to see what he can learn.

RICK: Yeah. We have another question from Lucy and war from Anna in Warsaw. She asked one earlier, she said, as a psychiatrist, can you see any connection between multiple personality disorder and the research you are working on?

JIM: Well, there are similarities. I mean, the multiple personality disorder otherwise known as now as dissociative identity disorder, does involve some unusual things related to consciousness and the seeming simultaneous consciousness existing within one person. But I think the resemblance is or are essentially ideations that coincidence, but I mean, I think recalling the past life is is, I think, very different from people who have dissociative identity disorder than that. And even in our cases. It’s not like someone’s son, like the child says, that they’re a different person. And they’re, there’s not this change in awareness. I mean, some of the kids have their memories at all times, there are a lot of the kids who has been the right frame of mind to talk about it is during kind of relaxed times, but it’s not like their primary personality leaves, and then an alter comes, it’s more just them recalling things from when they were a different person. So I think the two phenomenon are more different than they are alike.

RICK: Yeah, there’s some relevance, I think, I mean, you hear people with multiple personality disorder in which maybe one personality is allergic to peanuts, and the other isn’t there something and they actually have different physiological reactions, depending upon which personality is running the show. But which kind of points to the possibility if we believe in disincarnate entities that, you know, different entities are kind of taking turns, you know, driving that particular vehicle, and and then it’s not a big step from there to think of, you know, disincarnate entities incarnating. In a body, usually one of them has time, which is a healthier arrangement than several trying to crowd in there.

JIM: Yeah, I mean, you’re there are some amazing, remarkable cases with with multiple personalities, just the kind of things you’re talking about. So the the interplay between consciousness and the physical and the body are things that we still have a lot to learn about.

RICK: Yeah. One One thing that this brings to mind is that people with multiple personality disorder usually have been traumatized severely in their youth. And a lot of the cases that you have studied, have involved trauma of some sort of violent death, or some such thing, almost as if people who died, you know, suddenly or violently or are more likely to remember their past lives than people who just lived to a ripe old age.

JIM: Absolutely. So and 70% One of the cases the child died by some sort of unnatural means murder, suicide accident combat, which of course is far more than what happens in the general population. So that that’s certainly a factor here. I view more not necessarily connected with multiple personality but more connected with PTSD. I mean, you know, in this life, unfortunately, is the traumatic memories that sometimes stay with us even if we don’t want them to. And in our cases, it seems that Dinah traumatic death makes it more likely than those memories stay, and then continue on into the next life.

RICK: Yeah, I mean, if you just had a nice quiet retirement and died peacefully in your sleep, there’s no big impression from that, you know, but if if something really horrible happened to you, chances are you still remember your next one.

JIM: Yeah, that’s right. I mean, we do have those cases for somebody died of old age. But I mean, they’re gonna be you know, the spectrum within a phenomenon but but certainly is much more likely. It’s a traumatic death

RICK: is Carol in India, Indiana’s psychic, she keeps asking questions that pertain to just what we had been talking about. So Carol has another question, what percentage of your subjects have died suddenly, from deliberate violence or tragedies such as burning to death or accidental drowning? It seems that all of them have reincarnated rather quickly versus what is classically, here’s a new part of the consideration of what is classically understood to be a two to 300 year or more period between lives, is the fact that their previous lives were relatively recent. The reason they recall them so readily?

JIM: Well, that’s a good question. But it’s certain she’s certainly right that they do tend to be recent lives. And the average interval between the lies in our cases is only four and a half years. So it seems, was this phenomenon that we’re studying for intact memories to come through that how many there are exceptions again, but for intact members to come through is much more likely if it is a recent life that ended traumatically. So it’s, you know, you could look events say that sort of the normal process, where we don’t remember lies, gets short circuited, and either lead the spirit to be kind of held to this room and then come back quickly, or perhaps held to this room and not go off to another kind of existence, like other individuals do. I will say we occasionally do get reports where it sounds like it’s an ancient life, but but again, those are completely usually completely on verifiable, so to be verified. I mean, now with the internet and records is conceivable, you know, say from Civil War or something, you might be able to document things. But for the most part, it has to be recent enough. Like certainly with Ian’s cases in Asia, it had to be a recent enough life where there were still people around who could confirm the things that the charter members

RICK: Yeah, I, I was impressed with the guy who read the audio books on audible, because he was having to pronounce these incredibly complicated names from Sri Lanka and Thailand. I can’t even read them much less pronounced than that. It was kind of impressed. Yeah.

JIM: Hopefully he did them confidently, if not correctly, he convinced you that he was saying that correctly. Yeah.

RICK: There’s some interesting verses in the Bhagavad Gita about reincarnation, I don’t know if you’ve ever read it have you is, I have not added some cool things in there. Like one thing that kept in mind just now, because of what we’re discussing is there’s a point at which our journal asked Krishna, what happens if a person is on the spiritual path, but dies before reaching the goal before reaching enlightenment? And Krishna said, Well, he tends to spend a long period of time living in the sort of heavenly realm. And then he’s reborn in a pure and illustrious family, or if he’s really fortunate in a family of Yogi’s, but the implication there was that if it’s, if it’s a person who’s really had a spiritual orientation, he might have a long period of between lives. But my hunch is that anything goes, I mean, there might be, let’s say, an urgency for him to come back and do something. And so it might not be on time. But

JIM: I Well, you’re right. I mean, can only speculate the this idea of unfinished business which, you know, would apply for life in it suddenly, and even once where people die of old age. I mean, you can always interpret, you know, come up with an interpretation, but, but certainly for many of them, like there’s one case where a child seemed to be his grandfather reborn, and his his dad felt like that. His own father, the grandfather had not been able to express his love to his children. the way that he would have wanted to sew, the boy’s dad again felt like if his own father has returned, it was so that they could have more of a connection that he did have a very tight connection with the child. So, you know, unfinished business, this idea that there would be this emotional tie or emotional pole that would bring the individual back quickly in the same family. I mean, there’s certainly a logic to that.

RICK: Have you come across the concept of soul groups, you’re just kind of alluding to it really where it could be within families where there’s a sort of sequence of incarnations where people play various roles within the same small family group. And then there’s sort of the thought of larger soul groups, you know, like people are in some kind of a larger mission, that all incarnate together and to fulfill that mission.

JIM: Yeah, certainly, I mean, people, especially with hypnotic regression, who have reported that kind of thing, and are cases is extremely rare for the child to say that a family member was somebody else with them in the previous life. I won’t say it never happens. But it doesn’t happen very often. Another one may they are they still could be traveling together, and the child does not recognize the other person. But it’s not something that’s typically part of our cases. Yeah.

RICK: This is a little bit off the topic of reincarnation, it’s more of a near death experience thing. But have you ever had Dannion Brinkley’s books, where he talks about his four near death experiences and how he had this life review, where he he ended up experiencing the effects of his actions from the perspective of the people who were affected by them?

JIM: Yeah, I think it’s 25 years ago when I read those, but I remember one in particular about I think we’re somewhat general, or somebody got assassinated, and he could experience it through the soldiers who were so shocked by this death or so yeah,

RICK: he had been a sniper in Vietnam. And he and he also experienced it, like from the perspective of the family members of that man, and, you know, the hardships it put them through and all kinds of stuff.

JIM: Yeah. I mean, again, I think there may well be something to that of us being connected on the consciousness realm more closely than we are now. So it’s, it’s, it wouldn’t shock me that in that other state, that we could essentially experience things through other people’s eyes and be empathic to other people’s experiences that that makes sense. Yeah.

RICK: I suppose as we were discussing earlier, that people who are really skeptical of what you do don’t even bother to look at it, because they figure it wouldn’t be worth their while. Have you had many encounters with people who, who are skeptics who do take the time to challenge you? And have you ever debated any of them? And what are some of the main objections they raise? And how do you answer them?

JIM: Yeah, no, I haven’t done debates with people. I don’t think that would be particularly fruitful, because we’re not gonna change each other’s minds, I don’t think. But, you know, the objections can vary. And sometimes to be honest with the people who raised the skeptics who raised objections don’t really know the details of the cases. But I mean, there are people have many of these cases, No one wrote down the child statements before they went looking for the previous person. So it’s a fair criticism to say, well, once the families met and exchanged information, then they credited the child with more information about past life than he actually had. And that may well happen in some cases, people have looked at that a little bit, haven’t really found much evidence for it. Because if you look at cases where people did write down the child statements, before the families met, versus ones where they didn’t. What you see is the ones without the written records, the families are not crediting the kids with with more information, in fact, actually a little bit less because they they forget the some of the details over time if they didn’t write it down, but that’s a fair criticism. I think some of the cases people will say, Well, maybe it’s just coincidence that the child had these details. Some cases that clearly doesn’t work. I mean, if you know for childlike change line or to talk about that atoma and Jack Larson and the exact details of the one plane crash at Iwo Jima, you know, whatever the explanation is, is not coincidence. So, with the various criticisms, there’s not kind of one way to explain away the cases that will work for all the cases. So some of the criticisms made We all have value and we consider them but but I haven’t heard anything that that makes me think it’s easy to discount this phenomenon. Okay?

RICK: There’s so many different interesting aspects of your book. But here’s one thing that jumps out at me from my notes right now. And that is kind of unusual behaviors among children who remembered past lives, like they might have an unnatural phobia regarding something that, you know, related to their, their earlier death, or they might have strange tastes like a two year old with a craving for cigarettes and whiskey. or children who play it things that they did during their previous lives. Perhaps you could tell us some anecdotes of those kinds of things.

JIM: Yeah, I mean, they’re certainly there, that’s for sure. So yeah, with the phobias, in the cases for traumatic death was involved or an unnatural death. 35% of those kids showed intense fear toward the mode of death. So like, in the drowning cases, where there’s one get the little girl hated being in water. So from the time she was an infant, it would take three adults to hold her down to give her a bath. And then when she got old enough to talk, talked about the girl from another village who had drowned in an accident. And yeah, with the kind of the likes and dislikes, yes, there are cases, number of cases where the young child is trying to sneak cigarettes or even snake liquor, where the previous person was a heavy smoker, heavy drinker. There there are the Ian found a couple of dozen cases in Burma, of children who said that they’ve been Japanese soldiers who were killed in Berlin during World War Two. And a lot of them would complain about the spicy Burmese food, want to eat raw fish, that kind of thing. Instead, the behaviors sometimes in the play, I mean, it’s compulsive compulsively playing things from the past, like most often the occupation, where the kids will just spend hours on in and doing this occupation that had nothing to do with their current family. So you know, all this shows, I think, that it’s not just information that has carried over, but there is this emotional piece that has carried over as well, that they, you know, they experienced as a, as a whole have affected the child not just with what they know, but also with their behaviors and emotions.

RICK: Yeah. Do you think that reincarnation is relevant and perhaps helps to explain homosexuality or transgender issues and things like that, where one has actually changed genders from one life to the next, and that would explain their current orientation?

JIM: Well, I mean, I wouldn’t say it explains in the sense that, that I would want to pathologize No, not.

RICK: Nothing is bad. I’m just saying, you know, maybe that’s a Go ahead. Yeah.

JIM: Well, I Yes, I mean, I think we do have good reason to think at least in some of our cases that there has, the past life has had an impact on either sexual orientation or gender development. So in 10% of our cases, the child remembers a life as a member of a different sex. In the general population, most young children show what’s called Gender typical behaviors. So for as stereotypical behaviors, so little boys tend to prefer to play with trucks and little girls with dolls and that sort of thing. We can certainly discuss how that comes about and the environmental influences and so forth. But about 3% of young boys and 5% of young girls show gender nonconformity where they show behaviors that are more typically associated with with the other gender, and are cases where the child remembered life as a member of the opposite sex 80% of those children showed gender nonconformity. So certainly in those cases, it seems it seems that the past experiences have impacted their development in those areas in this life.

RICK: Interesting. Okay, so this again, is a bit of an abrupt segue, but there I have a section here on opposing points of view, you know, materials worldview, other pieces of evidence, unknown mechanisms, the population explosion, Alzheimer’s disease, religious objections, might be fun to explore a few of those because there might be people listening to this who are skeptical and you know, it’s good to like, for instance, the popular explosion one might say, you know where all these people coming from if if it’s a one to one sort of relationship between you die, you get reborn your day reborn, then, you know, the world, the population is many times greater now than it was a couple 100 years ago. So we’re all the souls come from?

JIM: Yeah. So yes, there’s certainly more people alive now than there used to be. But there are still plenty of people died. And there are a lot more people who died and they’re alive now. So, you know, if you look at sort of estimates of inequality counts as human and how many people around but anyway, it looks like they’ve been, I think I’ve got the stats, right. 105 billion people that has lit before, and what are we eight or 9 billion now. So, you know, there’s certainly they’re not there. Now, the time between lies of the half has to be getting shorter. Of course,

RICK: those 100 and 5 billion people who lived before could actually just be the 9 billion people here on Earth. Now who’ve gone through a bunch of lives, if you add them all up, you got 109 billion.

JIM: Well, that’s right. But at the same time, it may be that new souls get created that people you know, why would they have to all be there at the start? And then as you as you were talking about earlier, if you look at other planets, or other universes or whatever, or for that matter, the animal kingdom, I mean, there are plenty of ways where reincarnation could occur, even as our population is growing. Yeah, that’s

RICK: right. I mean, one Indian belief is that there are several different kinds of animals, I think it’s cows, monkeys, dogs, and some other things that are either always or many times reborn as humans, cows, especially, which is why Indians revere cows, and they’re not only born as humans, but they’re born as teachers, supposedly, and that if you don’t properly allow cow to reach its full development as a cow, you end up with an undeveloped teacher getting born who is incapable of teaching higher knowledge. But you never heard

JIM: that. So there are certainly those beliefs in a lot of places about trans migration across species. And yet we have very few of those cases right. lunches with somebody who thought Yeah, snake right, have had cases. Yeah, there’s a snake case. And me there, I think in think he said somewhere, maybe he had seen 30 cases. But anyway, the it’s a rare phenomenon, of course, those can be completely unverified. But so it suggests that these cases don’t necessarily follow the belief systems in the places where they’re occurring. And, and it also, you know, I was talking earlier about how they tend to be recent lies, they also tend to be fairly nearby, and usually from the same country, and the same species. So for intact memories to come through, you know, may have to be kind of a close life in a lot of different ways, including a human life, you know, again, with outliers, but for the most part, it has to be a human life for the memories to come through intact.

RICK: Yeah. So what you’re saying is that, maybe you were a snake or some other kind of animal, but the likelihood of you remembering that when you’re now a baby is much less than if you had been a human in your past life. Is that what you’re saying?

JIM: Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And for me, personally, I don’t mind the idea that I might open a animal in the past. Like, I wouldn’t be too excited. Think about being one in the future. But hopefully, we all have the experiences that we need to have progress. Yeah.

RICK: Personally, I don’t have a problem with the thought that, you know, we could actually have been incarnate lived on other planets, and now we’re living on this one. Because I don’t think that the soul would be limited by the speed of light in terms of getting from there to here. I think that probably that, you know, what’s it What’s that complementarity or something where one one thing polarizes up in the other polarizes down, even if they’re separated across the galaxy?

JIM: Yeah, right. So I mean, I see no reason now, if you’re looking at consciousness, why it would be limited just to one planet. And, you know, we now know, essentially, there are an infinite number of planets. So sure, I mean, why couldn’t we have experiences that Yeah.

RICK: I think you know, probably some people in Christian some Christians would have objections to reincarnation because they don’t think it’s part of their tradition. But I’ve heard various bits of evidence including from you, that it actually is it just was edited out at various councils and, and whatnot, because for some reason, the people who were trying to control things didn’t think it was a good idea. for their followers to believe it. You want to elaborate on any of that?

JIM: Yeah, well, there are certainly early Christian groups that did believe in reincarnation. Yeah. And there’s this big. Yeah, yeah, exactly. And there’s this big debate about the existence of the soul, not even just in the past like that even existing before birth or before consumption, I guess. And eventually, yeah, there are counselors that said, No. But again, there are plenty of early Christians who believed in it. And there are actually plenty of Christians today, so that there have been polls that show about 20% of American Christians believe in past lives. So it’s, it’s part of their they have their Christian beliefs, but then they’ve also incorporated disbelief as well, which is exactly what James liners dad did when he was a conservative Christian. And he still is, but he’s, he’s convinced that his little boy, remember the past life? So they, you know, they don’t I mean, yes, it’s, it’s mentioned a little bit in the New Testament, or 1 million furred in the New Testament, in a couple of places, it’s certainly not a central part of, of Christian dogma now, but it’s not necessarily in conflict with it. I mean, is this same idea of life after death, and spirit and so forth? It just is apparent in kind of a different way than what we usually think.

RICK: Yeah. I mean, if you’re really attached to the idea that, you know, you only live one life, and when you die, you either go to heaven for all eternity or to hell for all eternity, then I guess you’d have a hard time incorporating reincarnation, but a lot of people are kind of fed up with that way of looking at things anyway.

JIM: For sure, but even with that, I mean, you could you could serve our members a series of lives and then you get judged. Yeah. Yeah. But you know, I think I mean, people don’t try to dissuade people from their own religious beliefs. But I mean, do you think if people were not typically all good, or all bad, right, right, we’re all shades of gray. So I don’t know where you would make the cut off as far as heaven or hell, guys. But yeah, maybe I’ll find out hopefully, on the good side, find out that one day.

RICK: Buddha was Buddhism and Hinduism both believe at least certain branches of them. In multiple heavens and multiple hills, there are different loci, as they call it. And, you know, they’re higher and higher heavens and lower and lower hills. And, but none of them say that you just get stuck there forever. It’s more like you work out some karma, then you move, you come back, or you go to a different one. So there’s something it’s very multi faceted, understanding.

JIM: Well, I kind of like that better. Right? You get a second chance or multiple chances as you evolve and develop. Yeah.

RICK: Alright, so as I said, when we before we started, if any ideas pop in your mind that we’re not talking about, feel free to just launch into them. And we’ll do that. Let’s see here. There’s some other good examples of people who had, I mean, there was the boy from Berra, and there was the Hollywood example. A fire on C Street than any other stories that you feel like it would be worth bringing up?

JIM: Well, certainly the Hollywood case that when again, is one that’s now fairly well known. Because we we had it on the NBC Nightly News, and they today’s show, because it’s an interesting case. It’s a little boy named Ryan, who his mom, mail does actually not email but actually the US Mail. Now there’s a letter one day saying that she and her husband just ordinary folks in Oklahoma, but their little five year old Ryan for the last year, has had said how he had a life in Hollywood and begged his mother to take him back there. And to try to help him kind of process that she she went one day to the public library and check out some books on Hollywood. And they were looking through one one day when they came to this picture from an old movie called Night after night. And he pointed to one of the guys and said, Hey, Mama, that’s George, we did a picture together. And then he pointed to another one and said, and that’s me, I found me. While the first person he picked, he pointed to is George Raft to those of us of a certain age may remember, but the one that he said he had been was an extra with no lines in the movie. So Ryan’s mom wrote to me to see if I can help determine who this was. I went and visited Ryan and his parents and then afterwards as we’re trying to figure out who this was, his mom was sending me email after email documenting Brian’s thing was about a past life and describing, frankly quite a life. Eventually, with the help of a Hollywood archivist, we did figure out who this guy was there the archivists, she went to the library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, got all the materials on night after night, most of which is about the stars i including Mae West, it was her first movie. But there was one picture this guy who and he was identified and as a guy named Marty Martin. So with that, then we can compare Ryan statements and Bryan said how he had danced on stage in New York and Marty Martin danced on Broadway. Ryan said that he then went to Hollywood and worked in the movies. Marty Martin did that at working mostly on dance in the movies. Brian said He then worked at an agency where people change their names and Marty Martin started a successful town agency. Ryan said how he had a big house with a swimming pool, which Martin did and that the Street Address had the word rock or mount in it and Marty Martin lived on North Roxbury. And Ryan even said that he didn’t see why God would let you get to 61 and then make you come back again as a baby. And you know, which kind of an interesting question to ponder, but Marty Martin’s death certificate said he’s only 59. But his daughter and stepson does, in fact, he was 61. So I looked into it down three census records, two marriage listings, and a passenger list that all gave ages in it already more than was in fact, 61. So even though the deaths are circuits of 59, Ryan was correct. Got 61. And all together, we verified over 50 of Ryan’s statements match Marty Martin’s life.

RICK: Interesting, in the should remind people that, you know, you’re, you’re giving us some of the more maybe dramatic examples. But between you and Dr. Stevenson, you’ve, you know, researched how many 1000

JIM: Well, the various depending on which account but over 2500

RICK: Yeah. And, and most of them have, you know, you know, make you really raise your eyebrows and thing was some seems to be something to this one.

JIM: Well, some more than others to show, and cause some are on verified, but we haven’t identified the past slide. Most of them were two thirds of the ones we have. But yeah, I mean, I’m telling the ones who with with the most the the richest kind of cases with the most details, but there are a lot of them that are persuasive. And then you put them all together, and you think, yeah, there’s there’s definitely something going on here. Yeah.

RICK: So what are you working on? Now? The more of the same? Are you like some new avenues of research and May? Well, good? Yeah,

JIM: I was just gonna say both really, I mean, that we are did more of the same, because I think continuing to study strong American cases can be persuasive. So, you know, if, if we had 50 cases, American cases, as strong as James and Ryan’s, that would get pretty hard to ignore. So so and we’re hearing from a lot of American families these days, we heard from over 100 of them last year, again, varying degrees of potential strength of the cases. But there are a lot of these kids out there talking about a past life. Another thing that we’re working on now is going back in interviewing adults who we originally studied, when they were children, and looking at how the memories affected their development and affected their lives. Now, we’re still we’re still crunching the numbers on that, but that’s something that is, I think, interesting, what are some of them said some? Yeah. Well, some of them say that, you know, while they’re experiencing the past life members, it can be quite difficult for, for the child and for the parents, you know, that there can really be suffering there, you know, crying about missing people. But in the long run, some of them say that it was a positive that it did, it gave them a more spiritual outlook, even after they lost the memories, and even some of them who don’t even remember that they talked about a past life, but their families have told them that they did that is helped to give them a more spiritual out legates or a bigger picture kind of view of things. So you know, that there, there was real benefit to them. And as well, I were also talking with the parents and seeing how they were affected by the child’s memories. And again, for many of them, it was opened them up to possibilities about past lives that they’ve never thought about before.

RICK: I’ll be interested to hear what happened to that Bobby Jones guy. I guess his name is Hunter something.

JIM: Yeah, yeah, that’s a pseudonym actually. But yeah, yeah, I should check in with a dad sometimes see if he’s still playing golf. I mean, they’re, you know, there’s some kids who are prodigies, but then when they get older, they, they let those things go. And of course, they’re pressures on prodigies, and it can all get complicated, but yeah, I should get some follow up on him.

RICK: Yeah, I mean, they might sort of feel like all right, done that then they’re don’t need to do golfing. Yeah. Simone Biles might be a concert pianist next time around or something?

JIM: Yeah, really? Want one lifetime as a gymnast is enough? Yeah.

RICK: So I think I’m sure there’s more we could talk about. But that’s what comes. Oh, wait a minute. Here’s another question that was sent in earlier that we haven’t talked about. This could be interesting. This is from John David Bannon and Queensboro in New York. He said, I’m curious about whether a spirit returning to the earth plane always comes back in sequence. If I now live in 2021, die and return do I always return in the future relative to the pre the current time? Is there any indication that we reincarnate in the past, say years before? Maybe die now and reincarnate in the year? 1600?

JIM: Yeah, I mean, we talked about that a little bit earlier. No, there’s not any evidence for that. I kind of like the idea of it, though. That, you know, maybe it’ll be sort of a different reality or something. But I think it’d be interesting. Personally, I’d like to come back, say in Boston and the Revolutionary War period or whatever. So I hope we can do it. But that’s not what our case is.

RICK: Yeah, there’s a Steven Wright joke. He goes into a cafe in France and says breakfast? No, no, he just goes into a cafe. And it says, breakfast served any time. And he said, I’ll have french toast during the Renaissance. Yeah. Some people I’ve talked to do say, I don’t know how they know this. But they feel rather confident that time is not linear, we just perceive it as linear. We’re kind of wired to perceive it that way. Because it makes living more practical. But then, in fact, we are living all of our multiple live simultaneously in sort of different dimensions or something or other.

JIM: Yeah, there are also some near death experiences that people report that they saw their whole life at once, and sort of a kaleidoscope kind of thing. So yeah, if you, if consciousness exists separate from this space time, then it can be mind boggling kind of to think about how, what the interaction with time might be. And yeah, what is it simultaneous? And what does that mean? To be simultaneous as time is marching on? So it gets complicated?

RICK: Yeah, you have an interesting section in one of your books about, you know, physics and the relativity of time, and so on, you go into Einstein series, and I always love listening to that stuff, I could never retain it well enough to tell you the difference between the special theory and the general theory of relativity. But it’s all very interesting. I mean, time is so malleable. You know, if you if you could ride on a photon, so to speak, you go from the Andromeda galaxy to here instantly. But from our perspective, as a stationary observer, it takes 2 million years for the photon to get here. So, yeah,

JIM: right. It’s not the constant that we think of it being. It’s, it’s, their different perspectives have had different times.

RICK: Here’s a question from Akshay and Puna. India, you’ve probably heard the phrase old soul, you know, the idea that people have lived so many lives, that they’ve accumulated a lot of wisdom and so on, in, in any of your cases do you have you felt like the child that you’re talking to? is an old soul is really wise young person?

JIM: Well, they’re mostly small children. I mean, some of them come out with kind of philosophical statements, but then many of them not. I mean, it’s, you know, they’re, they’re often focused on the events at the end of the previous life. often missing people are kind of traumatized by the death. So it’s, they’re kind of like everyone else. And, you know, I suppose that’s good. And then you know, most of the kids they seem to lose their memories of the past like they certainly stop talking about them. And then they just go on to be ordinary kids, which, you know, again, is good so that they’re experiencing this life without too much of a kind of things overhanging from from the previous life.

RICK: Yeah. There’s some stories in India of child saints, you know, who just became extremely Precociously wise, at a very young age like Shankara, for instance, who was, you know, giving lectures at the age of six and commenting on the Brahma sutras at the age of 10, or 11, with disciples around them and stuff like that. Anyway, it’s kind of inspiring. Here’s another question from Anna in Warsaw. She said, many children talk about love as something so crucial for their memories. People who have had nd ease, also mentioned it. Yeah, you often hear people with nd ease say that, you know, the big lesson in life is how much you loved. And they realize that when they had their nd, she says, and as maybe love is the view, maybe love is the vehicle that carries our consciousness from one life to another, maybe it is the recent achievement of evolution?

JIM: Well, that’s a little hard to respond to, I think, I think. I certainly agree that love is what gives life meaning. And, and we understand very little about consciousness and vehicles or anything else, and how those tie in together, you know, spirit and love, obviously, there’s a connection there. So I, I can’t really respond to the specifics of her statement or question. But I get that love is an important part of the story. Yeah.

RICK: It’s a nice, it’s probably a nice note to end on. Obviously, what the world needs now is love, sweet love. That’s the only thing that’s just too little of this old song very clear, yes. And whatever the reality of all these things that we’d like to speculate on, and, in your case, more than speculate, you know, you’ve done significant research on it. You know, we would like to be happy. And we would like other Ideally, we should like others to be happy. And I remember one time I was in the Philippines, and it was such a beautiful, I was taking a bus ride to this waterfall and the country was countryside was so beautiful. And it was like heavenly. And yet my experience with so many of the people I had encountered there was that they were miserable. And I was just thinking, so sad and kind of ironic that they’re in this heavenly place, and feeling so desperate and suffering so much and, and I kind of feel like, you know, the potential is there for our outers, our inner experience to be as heavenly as the most lovely places on Earth are outwardly outwardly. And that we could kind of have a situation of 200% of life where it’s, you know, 100% outer beauty and abundance and 100% inner fulfillment for all of us.

JIM: Right? So, there, there’s a lot about environment that as an individual, you don’t have control over, but you do have control over your internal environment. So you know, we all it’s an ongoing effort, you know, we all can get wrapped up in the various stressors that we have, and some people have more than others. But there’s also an opportunity to appreciate what is here that is good, and to help those around us have the good things and appreciate them too. And, you know, share the love and have a good life, even if some of the exterior things are are not so good. That there. So there’s the internal work that continues on even while we also work on the outer world as well.

RICK: Yeah. Good. Well, let’s keep working on it. Thanks for what you’re doing. It’s, it’s very interesting. And we kind of touched on what your work is now. But do you have any big future goals or, you know, aspirations in this line of work that you haven’t even gotten to yet that you’d like to accomplish? Not exactly.

JIM: I mean, I think, again, continuing to strengthen what we’ve already done, I think is worthwhile. I would like to, I mean, my big dream would be to connect this to, you know, the physics that were talking about earlier in a way that would contribute to contribute more to the development of a new paradigm. And yes, probably have to wait until my next slide. A lot of progress with that, but But it’s all there. I mean, they you know, there plenty people come at it from different angles, as far as what reality is and how it’s more than just the physical and in fact, it may be basically the idealism more than physical ism that really we should be focus on so anyway that I continue to explore in my mind that that connection between past lives and consciousness and also the physics and maybe at some point, we’ll pull it all together and go from there. Yeah,

RICK: we were talking earlier about paradigm shifts, and I, I really do feel like we’re in the midst of a big one. And that it’s hard to see, you know, from a ground level perspective, exactly what’s happening and how it’s shifting and so on. But I think the time will come when we look back, you know, maybe you and I will won’t be alive anymore. Maybe we will. But, you know, when we think who that was a radical transformation of society, unlike anything the world had ever gone through in recorded history.

JIM: Well, I hope so. And you’re right. I mean, you know, if you’re taking kind of a step at a time, then then you lose the kind of sense of the marathon, but it’s hopefully we’re making progress. And sometimes it’s two steps forward and one step back, but, but yeah, it’s, and then there’ll be these leaps, right? Yeah. You know, like with Einstein, or whatever. So maybe we’re getting primed for a big leap. So that would be great.

RICK: Yeah. Could be you know, in the way, the way phase transitions work is you often don’t see them coming like as water heats up, you know, it could be 99 degrees centigrade, nothing strange about it all sudden, one more degree and it’s boiling. So we could be closer to a big shifts, then we realize, yeah, yeah, I hope so. I hope so. Anyway, what you’re doing is an important part of the puzzle. piece of the work. We’re all on one big team pulling our various ropes. So thanks, I really appreciate it, you know, delving into your work and spending this time with you?

JIM: Well, I appreciate the chance to talk with him and like to say we’re all contributing and certainly programs like this and clearly with all the thought that you’ve done you know, we’re we’re all kind of working together to to grow basically says thanks for the opportunity to share some time

RICK: Yeah. And I’ll be in touch like I’m interested in your your comrade Edward Francis Kelly down there that you introduced me to him on one of the things you asked me to watch and yeah, he sounds like he’d be interesting guy to talk to maybe if you run into him Tell him we’ll be getting in touch at some point.

JIM: Yeah, I he would be a great guest.

RICK: Yeah, he would. Alright, so thank you. And thanks to those who’ve been listening or watching. As always, I will create a page on bat gap calm about this interview with links to doctors, Dr. Tucker’s websites and books and, and so on and so forth. And I think your your email address is right on your one of your websites so people can get in touch with you if they have a kid that remembers past lives or if they want to get in touch with you for any reason. You’re pretty accessible.

JIM: Yeah. Yep. I confess I get enough emails where I’ve not always quick to respond. And to be honest, may not always respond, but I’ll certainly certainly try.

RICK: Alright, thanks to those who’ve been listening or watching and we will see you for the next one. Next one is kind of its Academy a kind of a one two punch because next week, I’m going to be talking to Dr. Julie Beisel of the wind bridge Institute. And she’s been doing scientific research on mediums. Obviously a little bit different than what we’re talking about here. But mediums are people who talk to talk to people who have passed over so it’s kind of related.

JIM: Give her my regard. She does good work.

RICK: I will. Alright, thanks. See you all next time.