14 Sep

I had four great-grandfathers, two of them paternal and two maternal. The entire group is now dead, and that fact makes a very unique project possible for me.

My interest in the subject of my genealogy goes back a long time, to the middle years of my childhood.

It was then that my father lost his maternal grandfather. I no longer had any living great-grandfather, I was informed by both my parents. That message had a major effect upon my thought and my self-concept. I had only met the old man twice, at an early age with only a vague memory remaining. But the loss was something that never left me at the core of myself.

My parents belonged to a church of re-incarnators and I was early indoctrinated in the teachings and principles of their denomination.

The particular creed of our tradition held provisions that are unusual and peculiar to it alone. Rebirth will often occur in the form of a great-grandchild of the same sex as the earlier incarnation. If there should not exist enough potential sites for all four of the older generation to come back to life, they must be reborn as animals instead.

Thus, from my earliest years I realized that my soul could very well be the same as the one that had once dwelled in one of my quartet of great-grandfathers.

Which one could it be, though? Since no direct memory of that ancestor remains today, that cannot be known accurately or securely.

This mystery of my own prior residence became a puzzle that consumed me.

From time to time I quizzed my parents about each pair of their grandparents. It would not have been wise to be too eager in my curiosity, so there were strict limits to my efforts in that direction.

I tried to learn more from aunts and uncles on both sides, but their knowledge was as poor as that of my own two parents.

A solution seemed to appear when a close friend of mine invited me to join the Genealogical Club to which he belonged at the Town University.

I was in my last year of high school and had not yet chosen a career field to enter. My hope was that learning about family ancestry might open some door of great discovery for me. Why not specialize in the broad area of ancestral trees? I asked myself.

My growing curiosity about the personal incarnations of mine in the mists of the past made me an eager recruit to the club that I now joined.

Soon I was a frequent searcher in the library of genealogy, roaming through the copious electronic files available on the monitor screens.

A sudden idea struck me one day. If I was unable to determine which of my four great-grandfathers gave me his life spirit, what if I traced backwards the ancestry of that particular quartet into the past? Adding three additional generations in reverse, I would have available to me sixteen potential donors of identity. Each of my four male great-grandfathers would each themselves have four possible carriers of the soul they inherited.

And if the records went back far enough, the second tier of sixteen had sixty-four possible male holders of my personal spiritual self.

The prospect for research made me breathless.

But how was I to know the right person in the past when I came onto him?

The director of the genealogical library, a young man named Costo, was at all times generous in helping me. He succeeded in locating records of immeasurable value to my search. Never was there any effort to restrict my research or limit the scope of its reach. It was after a considerable amount of work that Costo asked about the purpose of what I was up to.

“Are you a re-incarnator, my friend?” he asked me in a whisper.

I was seriously surprised by the query and spoke only after consideration.

“Why would you believe that was so, Costo?” I at last replied to him.

The librarian grinned. “It was a deduction I reached from the way you concentrate your attention and energy. There have been many re-incarnators here who are exploring the records in the hope of finding a prior self.”

“Do you think that any of the researchers locate what they are after?”

“How can I say?” Costo looked me in the eye. “No one has told me yet.”

Into my mind at that moment came an idea out of the blue.

“What advice would you give to one like me, Costo? Am I going the wrong way somehow, am I overlooking some meaningful area or factor?”

The director suddenly wrinkled his brow. “No one ever asked me directly for such help. Let me tell you this: there are public sources available that are not at all used by those who are hunting for their previous identity. No one ever thinks of going to the crime and court records that are readily and easily available.”

What he said shook me. We both stayed silent for a time, in deep thought.

Finally, I decided to say what I thought was best.

“Can you help me make a survey of what has survived from the past?” I asked.

My calculation was that an investigation going back six generations before myself would cover two hundred and fifty-six separate, individual male ancestors.

Under the orders of my guide Costo, the recorded public sources were provided to me.

I reviewed all references to men in my family tree at the grandparent level, anyone who might have transmitted their soul forward into me.

But how was I to know when I had the person I was after?

It seemed logical to me that there would be a moment of recognition in which the correct, genuine insight came to me. Instantly the true identity will occur, I told myself.

I spent hours looking at faces and reading personal records. On and on proceeded my arduous hunt. Days passed and I finally reached the end of the two hundred and fifty-six male ancestors. What was I to do now? I asked Costo.

“Go back three more generations and search among your great-grandparents that you find,” he instructed me.

“How many candidates exist back there?” I inquired with burning curiosity.

He smiled brightly at me.

“A thousand and twenty-four,” he answered. “It’s time to start on those men.”

A long period of labor now stood before me. I started my hunt at once.

And then I reached number 174 on this third list of possible forerunners.

A deep intuition identified who this was. I knew within a few seconds.

But then a news report from that faraway date came up on the monitor screen. The headline shook me to the core.

“Madman kills his family of five, then self.”

My soul source had become insane and slaughtered his wife and four children. Then he had committed suicide. It was homicidal craziness, without rational motive whatever.

What have I discovered? I asked myself in terror.

My brain wheeled and spun. How could this be true?

What could such a history mean for the soul I had inherited?

Did I carry hidden spiritual seeds that I have always been unconscious of?

Was my soul one of a satanic nature? Did my fate set me toward inevitable doom?

This is the first indication of what I uncovered: I have strangled to death my guide and advisor, Costo. If it were not for him, I would never have learned what my soul had once been a part of. The horrid truth would have remained buried in the faraway past.

So, I have chosen a first, single victim.

Who can predict what other killings will result from the re-incarnation of an abominable, twisted ancestor?


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