I am uncertain if there are past lives, because I am unable to recall anything or see anything when it comes to my past life. But I am certain I am born from my mother’s womb, only when I am ask to recall about my birth, then I am not sure if I can remember anything. While I am not able to recall clearly, I am certain that I have gone through this process. As I can’t even recall all of the happenings of this current life, it is needless to say when I am ask to recall my past lives.
There are several conditions when it comes to the understanding of the functions of the mind:
First, there must be a transmission medium like a microphone or megaphone. Then when it comes into contact with my senses, I achieve understanding. Hence in order to understand things of a reasonable scope, we will need the application and aid of appropriate tools. That is to say for instance, we need a microscope to look at very small objects and a telescope for very far and distant objects. To use the current state of our sensory organs as tools to understand our past lives, such tools are highly inappropriate .
Despite the many experiences or memories contained in our sub-consciousness, we are unable to see them due to inappropriate tools being applied. Similarly, are we able to see the bacteria on our hands without the use of a microscope? We are unable to see them! Our sub-consciousness contains so many memories, but based on our untrained minds, we will not be able to recall them. If there are people who have adopted such reasoning and are able to recall, then perhaps we can accept this concept easily. Now not only Buddhism has said so, but even hypnotism has proven this fact of past lives.
Reference: Master Venerable’s Jih Chang’s “Spiritual Conversations (1): Why can’t we recall our past lives?”