African view of reincarnation is that the soul of the departed will revisit the community of its prior life. As opposed to Hindu’s belief of reincarnation, that the soul is to learn a life lesson and get promoted to a higher plane, the African view of reincarnation is that the soul returns for an extended relationship with those familiar to them in the past life.
The African religion believes that the souls of the dead hover closely to the grave until they find a living being to inhabit. This includes animals. In some African religions a series of lives must be lived as animals before they may be reincarnated into human form.
If a person dies and they are not permitted a proper burial or proper burial rights were not performed, the person is prohibited to reincarnate. This causes the soul of the departed to become a ghost on the earthly plane and they will communicate to the living. A proper burial right will be performed and the soul will be permitted to reincarnate.
The African view of reincarnation is that the light of spirit for the departed soul is in the physical plane inhabiting a physical body. The afterworld is a spiritually dry place, non-affirming and the departed soul searches for a being to inhabit.
Children are thought of as ancestors reborn and are watched closely to determine which ancestor has returned. When a male child is born he is referred to as father-returned and when a girl child is born she is referred to as mother-returned. The recognition of a dearly loved departed soul in the arrival of a new child is cause for great celebration in the community.
The number of children an African family is important because of the ancestral spirit that revisits. Children are thought of as spiritual wealth. The more children the richer the family is in ancestral presence.
The African’s also view a reincarnation that is a result of a curse that can occur to a family. A child will be born and die. The family will have another child that will die. Each death of a child in that family is believed to be the same soul. It is the responsibility of the family to determine what actions caused their curse. Once the curse is lifted, the family will have healthy children.
The African view of reincarnation does not limit the soul to inhabit one body. The one to one ratio is not exclusive. African’s belief that upon rebirth a soul may inhabit several bodies simultaneously.
Magic practitioners, witches and sorcerers are prohibited from reincarnation. Once these souls have departed the earth, they reside in a spiritually dead afterlife, void of love and community. This is the African conception of hell. To not be able to return to their family and rejoice in that returning to the African is unbearable to face.
The African view of reincarnation is that when the soul of the departed returns to the community and family from which they came that is their reward living a fitting life.
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