Science & Consciousness Weekly Study Group: Return to Life by Jim Tucker
Jim Tucker Presented his research on children who remember previous lives for the Caritas community in 2011. Unfortunately, his excellent presentation wasn’t recorded.
Since 2004 Jim Tucker has traveled the country meeting families whose children recount previous lives, and trying to determine if the children’s memories are valid. Continuing a fifty year research project at the University of Virginia involving children from all over the world, he decided to focus on cases in the United States, where parents would not expect their children to say such things.
A first-person account of his experiences with a number of extraordinary children, Return to Life follows Dr. Tucker on his investigations. Readers see him taking a young boy and his
mother to a remote island the boy has talked about repeatedly, working to identify a man in a photograph whom a little boy says he used to be and meeting a young golfing prodigy who has said he was the famous golfer, Bobby Jones. One little girl talks about a great fire; another recalls walking along a dusty road before being kidnapped by two men in a car.
By the end of Return to Life, readers will conclude that Dr. Tucker has amassed persuasive evidence that some children do possess actual memories of previous lives. He then puts the cases in the context of current scientific understandings and concludes with his vision about what the cases say about the question of life after death for all of us.
Dr. Tucker was born and raised in North Carolina. He attended the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a BA degree in psychology in 1982, followed by a Medical Degree four years later. He then received training in general psychiatry and child psychiatry at the University of Virginia. After he completed his training, he stayed in Charlottesville and began a successful private practice in psychiatry.
Dr. Tucker, who was raised Southern Baptist, had never seriously considered the possibility of past lives before reading one of Dr. Stevenson’s book. After learning about the work, he became intrigued both by the children’s reports of past-life memories and by the prospect of studying them using an objective, scientific approach. He contacted the Division and in 1999 began working there half-time. A year later, he gave up his private practice completely to work at the university. He has now published two books and numerous papers in scientific journals. He has spoken before both scientific and general audiences and has made a number of television appearances, including Good Morning America, Larry King Live, and CBS Sunday Morning.