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Old Yesterday, 04:54 PM   #3001
JayUtah
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Originally Posted by steenkh View Post
And then, if he reincarnates, he will have absolutely no knowledge of his past crimes, so how is this going to help him live a better life?
It seems he will have the "latent characteristics" of a mass-murdering dictator. I'll leave it to your imagination to say what kind of life that predisposes him to. What is a "latent characteristic?" It appears to be something that has enough of the effective properties of memory to save Scorpion's bacon, but without using the word "memory."
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Old Yesterday, 07:36 PM   #3002
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Originally Posted by Scorpion View Post
I don't know about three things, but the spirit guide of Ursula Roberts said in a trance lecture that Mozart was a musician in nine incarnations before he was born as the prodigy.

This anecdote as an example of, or evidence for, the reincarnation narrative of improving ones innate character over multiple sequential incarnations, doesn't make sense. Even if we accept at face value that Mozart's musical talent arose from a process of deliberately developing that talent over multiple incarnations.

For one thing, musical virtuosity has bugger all to do with moral character. The lives of great composers and musical performers (and virtuoso artists of all types) are far from a parade of exemplary personal character. Taken as a whole I'm not even sure they'd average out to average (though Mozart himself appears to have been neither particularly venal nor particularly praiseworthy in overall character). So what are the Angels of Karma doing selecting* for musical talent? If you're trying to improve a dairy herd's milk production you don't make selection choices to improve a few cows' dancing ability. It seems a stunt, a sideshow orthogonal to the supposed purpose.

Second, and related to that, Mozart's musical virtuosity does not appear to have done a whole lot of good for Mozart. It's a myth that Mozart died in abject poverty and misery, but he was in debt when he died and it was not until after his early death that his works were widely appreciated. There's no evidence that he sought or achieved moral or spiritual improvement, nor overcame any great moral or spiritual shortcoming, via his music.

This doesn't present any problem for a conventional narrative of divine acts by angels or gods or muses who confer extraordinary talents on certain mortals, thereby indirectly gifting the human world with their deeds or works. Mozart's music as a divine gift to mankind is a narrative that makes sense to most theists. But not for the Angels of Karma! Because by what we've been told here, improving the world is not their job.

Or if it is their job, that's a crucial part of how the world works that's been omitted from the spiritualist narrative. If the Angels of Karma deliberately assigned a musically adept spirit to a musically destined life for the purpose of introducing great music into the world to benefit others, that upsets the whole applecart. Because the applecart is built on the core idea that only direct personal experience contributes to spiritual progression. Such as, one can only learn sympathy for slaves by living lifetimes enslaved. Improving the world, such as by working to abolish slavery in some region, is not necessary or conducive to that process.

If we can learn from the world, from the lives of heroic reformers, from the works of great artists, from the efforts of doctors and scientists, from the stories told by great novelists and filmmakers; if we can improve the world and not just ourselves; if the fact that Mozart lived and composed could benefit all of us and not just some miscellaneous spirit who happened to be wearing Mozart at the time; why, then the Angels of Karma and the whole creaky apparatus of lifetimes of educational oppression and suffering would be shown up as cruel and wasteful.

I would imagine a truly devoted spiritualist would not want to upset that applecart by even breathing the name of Mozart.


*Note that the process that's been described here, of selecting predestined lives for each spirit's moral advancement, fulfills all the criteria for artificial selection in the Darwinian sense. It's not exactly a selective breeding program, but it's purported to have the same rationale and same long-term effects as one: the improvement of innate characteristics of a population toward some pre-determined desired condition.
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Old Today, 12:49 AM   #3003
Pixel42
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Mozart's musical ability is fully explained by the usual combination of nature and nurture. No addiitional fanciful explanation involving reincarnated souls is required.
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Old Today, 06:12 AM   #3004
Fast Eddie B
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Originally Posted by Pixel42 View Post
Mozart's musical ability is fully explained by the usual combination of nature and nurture. No addiitional fanciful explanation involving reincarnated souls is required.
The Law Of Parsimony, aka Occamís Razor, strikes again!
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Old Today, 07:23 AM   #3005
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Originally Posted by Pixel42 View Post
Mozart's musical ability is fully explained by the usual combination of nature and nurture. No addiitional fanciful explanation involving reincarnated souls is required.

Of course, and I've said as much, either earlier in this thread or in a previous one where spiritualist narratives of reincarnation were discussed and Mozart's talents offered as an example. Mozart's father was a noted music teacher, who dropped all his other pursuits to instruct his one surviving son.

I'm just pointing out that even within the overall spiritualist reincarnation narrative, Karma angels taking on the role of selective breeders of musical talent doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
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