Are these people really reincarnated?
What happens to us after we die? According to some religions, we go to an afterlife that is distinctly different from our life on earth. Other religions teach the philosophy of reincarnation: the belief that after death, we return to earth to live again as another person in another body.
If reincarnation truly is a reality, most of us are born into our new lives without any knowledge of who we were in our previous lives. However, some people claim that they have distinct memories, and sometimes even evidence, of who they used to be.
5. The Pollock Twins
On May 5, 1957, John and Florence Pollock of Hexham, England were struck by an unspeakable tragedy. The couple’s two daughters, Joanna, age 11, and Jacqueline, age 6, were killed in a car accident.
After mourning the loss of their two daughters, the Pollocks decided to move forward with their lives and attempt to rebuild their family. On October 4, 1958, the two were overjoyed to welcome twin daughters into their family: Gillian and Jennifer.
Shortly after the twins were born, the Pollocks noted something peculiar: Jennifer had a birthmark on her waist that was identical to one that their deceased daughter, Jacqueline, had. She also had a birthmark on her forehead that strongly resembled a scar that Jacqueline had. The couple brushed it off as a coincidence and dedicated themselves to enjoying life with their two new daughters. They decided to relocate to Whitley Bay three months after the girls were born for a fresh start.
For the first two years of their lives, the twins were entirely normal children. However, the Pollocks began to notice some strange behavior that made them question whether Gillian and Jennifer might actually be reincarnations of the daughters they had lost years before. When they were about two years old, the twins began to ask their parents about certain toys that had belonged to their deceased sisters; however, Joanna and Jacqueline’s belongings had been disposed of before the twins were born. There was no way the twins could have possibly known about these specific toys.
Then, the Pollock family decided to return to Hexham. As they drove through the town, the twins began to point out landmarks that had been familiar to Joanna and Jacqueline, even though the twins had never been to Hexham. Their parents had no idea how the twins could have known about these locations.
Additionally, when the twins were two years old they began expressing a serious phobia of cars, often yelling that cars were coming to get them when they saw automobiles outside. This irrational fear was enough to convince the Pollocks that they were living with reincarnated daughters. Yet, a few years later, the twins started to forget the memories of their previous lives and lived the rest of their years normally.
4. Virginia Tighe
Virginia Tighe (sometimes called Ruth Simmons) was a typical American housewife who lived in Pueblo, Colorado. In 1952, she agreed to undergo hypnosis at the hands of amateur hypnotist, Morey Bernstein. Bernstein told Tighe that he was going to use a technique called hypnotic regression to take her mind back to her childhood. This technique is often used to help patients remember events from their early lives that have been repressed or forgotten. The process worked so well that Bernstein decided to go a step further and try to take Tighe back to a time before her birth, perhaps recalling her time within the womb. Bernstein was stunned when Tighe suddenly seemed to change into an entirely different person.
The hypnotist quickly realized that he had regressed Tighe so far back that she was now in a previous life. He asked for her name, and she said that she was Bridey Murphy.
Tighe then began to tell Murphy’s life story in astonishing detail. According to Tighe’s story, Bridey Murphy was a 19th-century Irishwoman. Tighe began her story in 1806 when Murphy was 8 years old.
Tighe stated that Murphy lived in Cork, Ireland with her parents Duncan and Kathleen Murphy. Her father was a barrister, and when Murphy was 17, he arranged for her to be wed to another barrister: Sean Brian McCarthy. Murphy and her new husband lived at the Queen’s University of Belfast, where McCarthy worked. Tighe then described Murphy dying as the result of a fall. She remembered the funeral and gravesite, describing herself being there as a spirit. She also described what it was like to exist after death, stating that it was a feeling of neither happiness nor pain.
Tighe’s story became a popular news item. Tighe herself disliked the attention but stated that she wanted to believe what she had said while under hypnosis.
3. Ma Tin Aung Myo
In 1942, the country of Burma was under Japanese occupation. Daw Aye Tin, a resident of a small town in Burma, became acquainted with a Japanese cook stationed in the town. They would regularly discuss the differences between their culture’s cuisines and good-naturedly argue about which was better. In 1953, after the war ended, Daw became pregnant with her fourth child. During her pregnancy, she regularly had bizarre dreams in which the Japanese cook, who she had lost contact with, would say he was coming to stay with the family.
The child, a daughter named Ma Tin Aung Myo, was normal at birth, except for a small birthmark near her groin. However, as the child grew older, she was terribly afraid of aircraft. Her parents found this odd, as the child had never experienced war and had no reason to fear planes. Over the years, she became sad, telling her parents that she wanted to go home to Japan. When her parents asked her what she meant, she said that she was a Japanese soldier who had been killed by machine-gun fire from a plane.
Ma gradually started remembering more about her previous life, telling her parents that she had had five children and was an army cook. She also began to remember specifics of her death. She recalled being shot in the groin, in the exact spot where she now had a birthmark.
As she grew older, Ma began to dress and act in more masculine ways and began dating girls. She also developed a distaste for Burmese foods, preferring Japanese dishes. Unlike many children who recall past lives, Ma never forgot her memories and continued behaving in ways that reflected her former self throughout her life.
2. The Druze Boy
The Druze people originate from western Asia. This ethnoreligious group adamantly believes in the existence of reincarnation. A young, unnamed boy belonging to this group made headlines with his astonishing memories from his past life.
The boy lived in Golan Heights, a region near the border of Syria and Israel. When he was three years old, he approached one of the elders in his community and told them that he recalled his past life. The elders were excited to hear his story, as they had believed since his birth that this boy was reincarnated. The child was born with a long, red birthmark on his head. Most who believe in reincarnation presume that birthmarks are indicators of death wounds. Therefore, it came as no surprise when this boy told his elders that he had been murdered in his previous life when he was struck on the head with an axe.
The elders then led the boy through the village, hoping that he would remember more details about the grisly murder. The boy walked up to a man in the village whom he had never met. He called the man by name and said that this was the man who had murdered him. The man’s face grew pale at the accusation. The boy then led the elders to a spot where he said the body had been buried. The site was excavated, and the elders found a skeleton with a crack in its forehead. The boy then led the elders to another spot where they found the murder weapon. Confronted with this evidence, the murderer confessed to the crime.
Although the boy’s name is unknown, this is one of the most astounding cases of a past-life memory. Few who recall their past lives have such convincing physical evidence to corroborate their stories.
1. Alan John Miller and Mary Suzanne Luck
Alan John Miller and Mary Suzanne Luck are two of the most controversial figures in the world of reincarnation. The pair are based in Queensland, Australia.
Miller’s early life was unexceptional: he was a property developer and was divorced with two children. Then, he came to a startling realization: that he was the reincarnation of Jesus Christ. Miller first told his mother about his discovery. She was so shocked and disturbed by the claim that she tried to have him committed to a mental health facility. Miller was examined by a psychologist and declared sane.
In 2007, Miller met Mary Suzanne Luck. After a short time together, Miller informed Luck that she was actually the reincarnation of Mary Magdalene. The two joined together to create a Christian organization called Divine Truth, which currently has around 40 followers. The group believes adamantly that Miller is, in fact, Jesus and that he can recall everything about the last 2,000 years of human history.
One of the cores of Miller’s teachings is his belief that the earth will undergo terrible changes in the near future. He claims that tectonic plates will cause the oceans to rise, wiping out coastal cities. Meanwhile, the area in Kingaroy where his compound is based will undergo a miraculous change, becoming a sub-tropical paradise. His followers believe so thoroughly that he is Jesus reincarnated that most have sold their homes and moved to Kingaroy to be closer to the compound.
Many people call Miller’s group a cult. He encourages members to leave their homes and jobs, sell their belongings, and move to his compound. Many have also claimed that Miller encouraged them to leave their spouses because he claimed that they were not currently married to their “soul partner.”
Miller has been quoted as saying, “I don’t want to be Jesus. Who wants to be Jesus? But I love the divine truth.” Whether Miller is the messiah or not, his stories have certainly enthralled his group of followers.