Is this life all I have? Where do we come from before we are born? Where do I go after I die? Explore why we are born to the families we are born to and our journey from the subtle regions of the Universe into the life on Earth plane. Where are we before we are born? After we die on Earth, we (i.e. our respective subtle bodies) go to one of the various subtle regions of the Universe depending on our spiritual level and our merits and sins. Life on the Earth region is of great importance as it is the only plane where people from the lower regions can be born to do spiritual practice, complete their give-and-take account (karma) and get outside the cycle of birth and death to achieve permanent Blissful existence. Do we know about our previous births while in the subtle planes? The average subtle body generally remembers events only from its last birth on Earth. It does not remember births before that unless they are very notable. Why do we not remember our previous births in this lifetime? As we get involved with the world we forget our previous life in the subtle regions and on Earth. Our physical senses strongly overshadow our sixth sense and we loose our ability to perceive our previous births. Why are we born on Earth? We are born on Earth to settle our give-and-take account orkarmaand do spiritual practice. In the Nether world and Hell it is almost impossible to do spiritual practice so as to burn our give-and-take account (karma). What are the factors that decide when and where and to whom we are reborn on Earth? The two main factors that decide our birth on Earth are: 1. Are the conditions on Earth conducive for settling our give-and-take account (karma) 2. Which region are we in prior to our birth on Earth? The give and take account and rebirth Our give-and-take account (karma) is the single most important factor that decides the time period when we are born on Earth and into which family etc. What decides which part of the accumulated account will play out as one’s destiny on Earth? Here again the same rule applies: that part of the accumulated give-and-take account (karma) will be selected based on what can be maximally settled in the impending birth. Can parents attract a more spiritually advanced andsāttvik(pure) subtle body before conception through spiritual practice like chanting? Yes. This is only possible when parents are doing a considerable amount of spiritual practice, (i.e. a minimum of 4-5 hours a day according to the five basic principles of spiritual practice) If a Saint (i.e. a person above the 70% spiritual level) is to be born then the spiritual level of the mother needs to be at least 50-60% to be able to bear the positivity of the baby. The mother’s spiritual level holds 70% importance as opposed to the father’s spiritual level. What decides if one is born to wealthy families or to parents of a higher spiritual level? If a subtle body has more merits it will generally be born in good conditions and into families that are well off. If the subtle body has an above average spiritual level, it will be born to parents that are of a higher spiritual level that will be able to nurture its spiritual growth. However Saints being born are beyond merits and demerits and can also be born into very poor families. This will depend on their mission on Earth. What is the time gap between death and rebirth on Earth? There is no fixed time interval between death and rebirth on Earth. On an average it is 50-400 years for subtle bodies from the Nether region (Bhūvalok). Subtle bodies in Heaven may have to wait thousands of Earth years before they get rebirth on Earth. When is the next birth of a person decided? The next birth is decided at the time of death in the previous life itself in the case of the majority of people. Does a person know his destiny or to whom he is going to be born to? A person does not know about the family he is going to be born to until the very moment of conception. At the point of conception they have an understanding of their give-and-take with the family they are being born into. What decides the gender of the baby? In the first birth the gender of the newborn is decided by God. After the first birth, those who are born as males generally continue to be born as males if that is the predominant impression in the sub-conscious mind of the person. From completing ones give-and-take account (karma) point of view being male or female is of no value; as the other personality characteristics remain the same like anger, etc. What does this article mean for us? The only currency in the afterlife is our spiritual level. Human birth on the Earth plane is very precious from a spiritual perspective. It is the only plane where we can do spiritual practice to overcome our destiny and ultimately take us out of the cycle of birth and death into the eternal Blissful existence. In the current era we have to wait for many centuries before we get birth on Earth. In the current era on average only 5% will make it to Heaven and 30% of us will make it to the Nether region (Bhūvalok). The rest will unfortunately head for some of the regions of Hell. The current times i.e. between the years 1999 – 2022 the world will see a changing of mini eras in the main era of strife (Kaliyug). This era is very conducive for spiritual growth wherein one year of spiritual practice is equivalent to some 50 years in any other era. Through spiritual practice once we achieve the spiritual level of 80% in this birth itself, we do not have to come back to the Earth plane to settle our destiny.