Reincarnation Memories

15 Mar

Tage Didring had lived all his life south of Folkungagatan in the Stockholm district that came to have the shortened name of Sofo. No other part of the Swedish capital claimed to be superior to it in Bohemian style and culture.

Tage found it a congenial environment in which to practice his theosophic, consultations and activities. He was glad that he met no interference or hostility because of his occult-like profession. Being ignored by his neighbors was a highly prized benefit to the middle-aged bachelor with such intense otherworldly interests. His tiny apartment was both his residence and the place where he met with individuals seeking enlightenment of the spirit.

Everything seemed to be going smoothly for the dedicated adept of the supernatural until he was visited by a university student majoring in philosophy, with a concentration on metaphysical theories.

Stig Ramel was a youthful-looking giant with red hair and hazel eyes. He rang the bell to Tage’s apartment and introduced him. “I was told about your interests and experience by several friends in our department,” said the scholar, his eyes sparkling with obvious enthusiasm about his purpose in coming there. “Could I take some of your time and explain to you what I hope to achieve by seeking your advice and assistance?”

The older man made a rapid decision as he looked into the face and eyes of the stranger. “Let’s sit down in here and have a talk.”

Stig entered the living room and took a chair opposite the position that Tage Didring had occupied earlier in a large easy chair next to a bookcase.

“How long have you been interested in the supernatural?” bluntly began the theosophist.

“It has been so far a long time,” admitted Stig. “I cannot specify the exact date on which I turned in that direction. Today, I see myself as one overwhelmed with metaphysical questions and problems.”

“Which ones in particular?” inquired Tage with rising interest.

The student seemed to hesitate before he replied. “More than anything else, I want to know the truth about reincarnation after death.”

Tage gulped hard. “That is one of the most difficult questions and problems that exists and continues to trouble everyone who thinks deeply. It is interesting that you have come to someone with my background and experience with you curiosity about human fate and destiny. What do you think drove you to ponder such a difficult topic and ask help from a theosophist like me?”

Stig Ramel did not give an answer at once, but groped around as if he had no specific, definite reason.

“It is something of profound importance to every human being who thinks about the past or the future of his own existence. Why do I live here and now? Have I been anywhere ever before, and shall I appear at another time and place?

“Those are the type of questions that occur to anyone who thinks on the really important matters of life in this world of ours.”

Tage studied his new acquaintance for a short time. “Are you familiar with the thoughts and writings of Emanuel Swedenborg, the Swedish theologian?”

All of a sudden, the young man frowned. “His works are very troubling to me,” he darkly muttered.

“Why should that be?” demanded the other, his blue eyes beaming with growing curiosity.

“I believe he too easily dismisses belief in human reincarnation as an illusion created in the human memory by metaphysical entities such as angels and spirits. To him, metempsychosis as an idea was a result of misunderstanding the relationship between the physical and the supernatural. For him, reincarnation was only a myth, brought into the human mind by spiritual factors.”

Both of them, engaged in knotty thought, were silent awhile. Finally, Stig Ramel got to the point of his visit.

“I am here to ask you to become my guide into the realm of the unseen and poorly know, where the central questions remain unanswered. Are you willing to become my advisor on the problem of human life and its final destiny? The benefit to me fills me with hope that I can attain the truth. Will you help me?”

Tage broke out in a bright smile. “Certainly,” he replied.

In a series of meetings, the two men delved deeply into Swedenborg’s doubts about the truth of people’s memories of prior lives and existences.

“Is reincarnation a mistaken idea, as held by that 18th century thinker?” asked Stig. “Is it only a recollection of what the memories of others hold, specifically angels and spirits beyond and outside the human self? Does it result from mistaken ideas absorbed from one human mind, then later deposited in another person’s mind?

“Do our fellow humans only imagine that they lived prior lives at some past time because unseen spirits take and return such notions, moving them from one person to another?”

Stig Ramel waited for an answer, which turned out to be a disappointment to him.

“We have to be careful with such all-out denials of the metempsychosis of souls. Those spirits that are said to be the transporters of the idea of reincarnation cannot be aware that they enter into human minds and absorb all the memories that are there. They take all the ideas that enter them as if they were their very own. Their belief is that the remembered experiences are their own, all of them. The same reaction occurs in the human recipient at a future date. The reincarnation is like a shared memory, then. But at no stage of the process is there any conscious knowledge of its origin or its nature.

“But we still lack a full, adequate answer as to its truth by merely thinking philosophically about the question of reincarnation,” concluded Tage Didring. “My opinion is that only a live test will prove the truth or untruth of the ancient idea. Are you willing to undergo hypnosis that will allow us to explore your inner memories from another form of existence?”

“Yes, I am more than ready, sir,” said the university student with eager hope in his voice.

Good,” reacted Tage. “We shall attempt to locate any memories hiding in your unconscious mind, and test them to see they are genuinely yours from a previous life, or only dreams that you have absorbed from some angel or spirit capable of inventing and transmitting them to you.”

Both men were eager to get started the following afternoon. The theosophist found it easy to place Stig in a hypnotic trance the next day. It was much more difficult to find any kind of memory of an existence at another time or place. When the revelation of this secret memory finally occurred, it proved to be a total surprise to both the conductor and the one transported into the long departed and abandoned past.

“I can remember that there was a large house that I dwelled in, and that I was a very wealthy man of noble birth. There was the knowledge within me that it was Stockholm where I was living. And my name was one that I was fully conscious of, it was Nils Ekman, and I was engaged in Baltic trade that frequently took me to Finland, Russia, Poland, Germany, and several of the smaller countries.

“I was engaged in commercial deals that made me a very rich man. My generosity made for me a good reputation as a philanthropist and humanitarian.”

Stig Ramel looked at his mentor with enlarged and dilated eyes. “Was it the truth or merely imaginary?” he asked in a desperate tone. “Did I once really exist as this man of business, Nils Ekman.”

“We shall carry out some research and learn that for certain,” answered Tage Didring. “I will go to the Central Library tomorrow in order to find out what has been recorded about this man who has been identified here today.”

It was discovered by the theosophist that the firm founded by Nils Ekman still existed and operated, with his grandson as the president and owner of the business.

“We have to discuss the situation that resulted in this reincarnation with the man,” decided Tage. “That is the only way that we can establish the validity of what we claim has happened to the soul of the grandfather.”

“But how can we carry that out?” questioned Stig Ramel. “He might conclude that you and I are a couple of lunatics or eccentrics. How can we even gain his attention?”

Tage Didring scratched his chin for a moment. “I will telephone his home and inform the man that you and I have some important new information concerning his genealogy and family inheritance. My intention is to entice his curiosity without giving away too much at that early point. Hopefully, he will agree to talk with two strangers about his family history and the founder of his company.”

Hakan Erman bowed to the temptation to find out what Tage had learned about his grandfather. The night that the initial call was made, the two appeared at the luxurious mansion of the heir to the mercantile fortune.

The grandson was a tall, very thin man with snow white bushy hair and eyes of pure azure.

He instantly impressed his two visitors as warm and cordial as he himself opened the thick front door of Lapland pine. “Come with me into my private study. We can have ourselves quiet and privacy there. My wife and all our children have gone out for the evening.”

When the three of them were seated around an expensive mahogany desk, the wealthy merchant spoke. “You told me that you have uncovered some interesting information about my late grandfather, Nils Erman?”

Tage looked him straight in the eye. “I and my friend here believe that we can prove that that particular person has been reincarnated into someone who is living at this particular time. In fact, the recipient of the spirit of Nils Erman is sitting with us in this study. He is my companion and friend, Mr. Stig Ramel.”

Both visitors stared intently at the face and the eyes of Hakan Erman. There was no change or movement visible at all. The man seemed to be digesting the implications and significance of what he had just been told.

“You think that such an assertion can be proven?” asked the obviously stunned grandson and heir.

“Indeed, we do,” solemnly asserted Tage.

Hakan stayed silent awhile, thinking with effort that began to wrinkle and fold his forehead.

“You have shocked and overwhelmed my mind,” he told the two opposite him. “I will need time to consider and figure out what I shall need to do. No further need be said or done this evening. If you give me your two telephone numbers and your addresses, I will contact you to make arrangements for another meeting. By then, I expect to have a long list of questions that I will pose to the both of you. Will such a schedule and arrangement be agreeable?”

Both visitors said yes and Tage and Stig rose to leave.

Hakan Erman saw them to the front door without saying anything of importance or significance to the two bringers of stunning news of reincarnation within his own family tree.

The merchant made a telephone call from his study as soon as he had seen the two men were gone from the vicinity of the mansion.

“Hello, is that you, Sven? How are you? I have an important matter that I want to tell you about.

“This evening I had a visit from two individuals who I believe pose a serious threat of demanding money by means of illegal extortion. They have somehow stumbled into the personal life of my late grandfather, Nils Ekman. It is a murky area into which they are poking their noses and I think it best to put an end to their threat as soon as possible.

“That is where you could help me solve this problem, Sven. I will have both of them back here at my home tomorrow night. Could you be here as well? Yes, I believe your intervention could frighten this pair into going away and leaving me alone.

“You will? I shall forever be grateful for that, Sven. If you get here by nine, we can be fully prepared to cope with these troublemakers.

“Good night, my friend. Bless you for what you are going to do for me.”

Tage and Stig arrived a few minutes early at the mansion of the merchant heir. The latter once again met them at the front door.

“Come right in,” smiled Hakan Erman. “I did not inform you before, but there is present tonight one of my closest and dearest friends. Do not be alarmed, for he is a wise and discrete person who will be of great help to us in many ways.

“He is already waiting to meet you back in my study.”

For a second, the two visitors exchanged glances of surprise and confusion, then silently followed the man they had come to talk with. The three made their way back through the mansion to the owner’s private sanctum.

A huge, heavy-set man sat there. He did not rise or stir at all as the three came in and took chairs.

Tage and Stig stared at the gigantic figure in the official blue uniform of a high official of the Stockholm Police Department.

As soon as Hakan was seated behind his mahogany desk, he introduced the strangers to each other.

“Gentlemen, this is Chief of the City Police of Stockholm, Mr. Sven Bryn.” He turned to the official with a devilish grin on his face as he spoke. “Sven, these are the two characters who came to me with the preposterous story that I described to you earlier.

“Mr. Ramel is the one who claims to have the resurrected spirit of my grandfather within himself. Isn’t that something? The other fellow, Mr. Didring, told me that he was the one able to identify the reincarnated soul of old Nils Erman in his associate. Did you ever hear of anything like what these two told me last night? I am certain that they believe that their tale is a precious and valuable one. Why don’t you ask them for the details of how they came to believe such a fantastic idea? I am sure they would be more than happy to repeat what they have already said to me.”

The Police Chief glared at Stig Ramel, then at Tage Didring. Only then did he address the pair of strangers. His baby blue eyes appeared reddened with angry emotion.

“I have heard many stories told by blackmailers and extortionists in my lifetime, but I believe this to be the wildest fantasy of them all. I don’t care what you two petty crooks think or believe, but any continuation of this tale by you, either in public or privately, will be treated by me and my special racket squad as a brazen attempt to get some illegal payments made to the two of you.

“I am prepared to go on with a full departmental investigation. My detectives are experts in getting to the bottom of any scheme like yours. Should you go on with this matter, you will find yourselves the subjects of full criminal prosecution, with the total force of the law applied against you.

“If you have any native intelligence, you will leave here at once and never bother Mr. Ekman in any way in the future. I hope you both have the common sense to heed the words that I have just said to you.”

With that, the Chief of Police turned his face and eyes away, acting as if the two visitors had somehow disappeared from view.

Tage was the first of the dumbfounded pair to rise to his feet, followed soon by Stig. The pair stared in confused wonder at each other. Without a word being said, they both understood what they now had to do.

The theosophist led his companion out of the study. They were able to find their own way down the central corridor, to the front door of the great mansion, then out into the cool evening air of Stockholm.

They looked up and down the quiet street, waiting for a taxi that could take them back to their part of the city.

Back in the merchant’s study, the two old friends shared glasses of imported brandy and exchanged opinions about the strange event they had been a part of.

“Do you think they will bother me again?” inquired Hakan Erman of the Chief of Police.

The latter let go a merry laugh. “I think not, because my statement clearly impressed both of them. Their fears are going to prevent them from ever conceiving of the nature of the true situation, dear Hakan.”

The merchant prince rubbed his chin. “How did they come up with such an erroneous concept? But, of course, they do not know what the truth about my grandfather happens to be. How could such idiotic amateurs know that his genuine spirit was reborn inside you, Sven?”

“They somehow stumbled upon your grandfather as a prior life. There was no way they could have known who and what I am. But the threat from those two is now over, believe me, my friend.”

Hakan Erman poured another brandy for the reincarnated form of his grandfather.


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