Reincarnation Makes National News

Though it is not common, it’s more common than most know: kids telling stories about being someone else, having been another person or lived another life. These ‘tall tales’ by kids tend to be ignored (if not downright discouraged) by parents in the West. Of course, in India, Thailand and so forth, where reincarnation is not a forbidden topic, these stories by children are taken a bit more seriously. Sure, some kids have vivid imaginations or can be influenced by TV, video games or others around them. But not all such stories of past lives by children can or should be so quickly dismissed.

Typically, a local news station now and then will cover a supposed ‘reincarnation’ story. Sometimes about children, sometimes about adults who have some type of dramatic experience which opens them to the possibility they did have a past life. Typically, the same thing occurs after the broadcast: Critics/Skeptics and/or traditionalist Christians who are offended by alternative spirituality contact the TV station and complain. The many of Christian belief complain that the material on reincarnation is promoting paranormal or offensive ideas. The critics/skeptics complain that such reincarnation stories are typically hoaxes or children being manipulated (consciously or unconsciously) by adults for some reason. Either way, it’s the same message to mainstream broadcasters: Reincarnation isn’t real. Don’t talk about it. For many, any investigation into what seems paranormal is a waste of time and ought not be discussed.

So, it was rather surprising that on March 20th, 2015, NBC national news was willing to broadcast a story about a well document reincarnation story, one involving a 10 year old boy who just had too much information, too many details, about a former life, to be ignored. One has to hand it to mother and child, both were brave enough to allow their story, their adventure, really, to be told on a national broadcast. One has to hand it too NBC for being brave enough to broadcast the story knowing they likely would get the negative feedback for doing a detailed story on reincarnation. (You can see many of the negative comment about running a reincarnation story HERE)

NBC broadcast the story of Ryan Hammons of Oklahoma who began having vivid dreams about people, places and events he couldn’t explain or understand. He told his mother, Cyndi Hammons, that he thought he use to be somebody else. Ryan was so insistent that his mother began helping Ryan explore his ‘fantasy’, hoping facts and insights would end Ryan’s fantasy. However, Ryan’s stories seemed more than just a little boy’s active imagination. Ryan talked in detail about a life in Hollywood, full of details that ordinary little boys would have no interest in nor knowledge about.

Cyndi recognized that she was out of her depth. Was Ryan lying? Disturbed? Not uncommon thoughts for a middle class mother who attended a Baptist church and had no interest in ‘alternative’ spiritual concepts. So, Cyndi contacted Dr. Jim B. Tucker, a child psychologist, associate professor of psychiatry and neurobehavioral sciences at the University of Virginia. Dr. Tucker has been studying cases of children (typically between the ages of two and six years old) claiming to remember a past life. These claims by children are more common than most know. Tucker began his studies not as an investigation of reincarnation, but as an investigation into a well recorded phenomena that involved children claiming they remember being someone else. What is effecting these children? Is it neurological? Environmental? Emotional?

Ryan had insisted he had been an actor during Hollywood’s golden age in the 1920s and 1930s. Ryan’s mother picked up an obscure book on that era and while thumbing through it with Ryan, Ryan stopped her, pointed to a man in a picture and said, "That’s me! That’s who I was". The photo was from a 1932 Mae West’s film called Night After Night. The photo included several people. The man Ryan pointed too was an extra in the film, unnamed in the book. Now that Ryan, his mother, and Dr. Tucker had a name and a picture, the story took a dramatic turn. For years, critics and skeptics of ‘reincarnation’ have claimed that if reincarnation was real, why couldn’t the supposed reincarnated person provide detailed, verifiable information about a previous past life? Well, actually, others have provided such information …

Indeed, many people have provided information about a past life. However, critics of reincarnation have always generated excuses as to why the detailed information wasn’t valid. Excuses range from unconscious memories that a person aquired while reading a book or watching TV which form the basis for a supposed ‘past life’. This could happen, maybe, but does that somehow explain ALL reported past lives. There is also the weird mathematical models excuse which is which is suppose to show that ‘reincarnated people’ somehow have had contact with the person or relatives of whom the ‘reincarnated’ claim to have been (think six degrees of separation of Kevin Bacon only in this case you somehow know personal details about another person). And, of course, the old favorite, the supposed reincarnation is all a hoax for profit. Many of these supposed explainations of reincarnation seem a little less valid when dealing with children.

Over time, Ryan provided a great deal of personal information about the person he used to be. With a picture of who he was, a timeframe and a place to start, now the details Ryan provided could be used to see if it lined up with an unknown man in an obscure photo. With the help of a Hollywood historian, the name of the man in the photo was discovered: He was Marty Martyn.

Ryan had said in his previous life he had a great life in Hollywood, owned a large home with a pool (Ryan often told his mother he missed his pool at his old house). Ryan said he’d lived on a street with the word ‘Rocks’ in it in Hollywood. Marty Martyn did have a home with a large pool on Roxbury Drive in Beverly Hills. Ryan said in his past life he’d been an actor, agent and danced on Broadway. All of this turned out to be true about Marty Martyn. Ryan had said he had been married five times, traveled to Europe and meet actress Rite Hay worth. All that turned out to be true about Marty Martyn. Ryan said he’d had two sisters in his previous life … and, yes, Marty Martyn had two sister. Ryan would lamented he missed his favorite orange soda called True-adze, a soft drink discontinued 50 years ago.

Over all, Dr. Tucker was able to document 55 accurate ‘hits’ by Ryan about Marty Martyn’s personal life … information that was largely unavailable online and difficult to obtain. The kicker was Ryan claiming he died at age 61. Based on birth and death certificates, Marty Martyn died at age 59. Dr. Tucker continued to dig into this discrepancy and eventually discovered the death certificate was incorrect, and Ryan was right: Marty Martyn did actually die at age 61, a fact no one would or could have known based on the most current documents.

The University of Virgin has documented over 2500 investigated cases of children claiming a past life. This research was begun over 50 years ago by Dr. Ian Stevenson, a scientist and researcher, who has taken his own share of abuse from the scientific community and skeptics for his even investigating supposed cases of reincarnation (see 20 Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation. Dr. Tucker has combined his investigations with those of the university and, to date, produced two fascinating books of his own. Return to Life and Life Before Life. Fact is, many scientists are beginning to take reincarnation and past lives out of the ‘paranormal’ category and putting into the category of genuine mysteries (which science ought to investigate).

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It is the position of the University of Virgin, Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. Tucker that they are not advocating reincarnation, but rather researching the children who exhibit the same ‘symptoms’ of recalling past lives. This is a logically reasonable position. Based on the evidence, claims of fraud, hoaxing, coaching, ‘unconscious memories’ or some remote possibility of contact between child and the person they claim to have been, don’t seem to stand up. Interestingly, just as skeptics accuse believers in reincarnation of ignoring facts, is seems skeptics do the exact same thing. Perhaps it’s just the nature of ‘True Believers’ to not let facts get in the way of one’s preferred opinion. Why not just document and explore the possiblities?

Two big thumbs up to NBC national news for actually doing a credible story on reincarnation, and taking the inevitable criticism of doing so. One would think, evidence of possible reincarnation would be big news … wouldn’t you?

If you’d like to chat with a psychic about the possibility of a past life, give Psychic Carmaleena a call at 1-866-407-7164. Carmaleena has years of experience as a psychic reader and has long been aware of how past lives can influence one’s current life. You may also appreciate Past Life Chat where you can chat online with experts in reincarnation and past lives.


Original NBC Reincarnation broadcast

Interview With Ryan & Cyndi Hammons

Another Child Reincarnation Story – YouTube