For the most part, a single lifetime should be enough to teach a newly hatched soul the basics of socialized behavior and give it a proper sense of what constitutes good and evil. No matter how troubled that life may have been, once a soul has crossed into the mainstream of spiritual life, it would have learned enough about itself to start the long climb toward its spiritual goals. The world of matter is just basic training for spiritual life; just a kindergarten of sorts.
On the other hand, for some souls, living multiple lifetimes in a world that offers resistance might represent the quickest way to shorten their journey toward their ultimate union with God. Life in the summerlands is easy and offers little in the way of resistance while life in dense matter on earth is very difficult and requires a lifetime of work and learning. On earth, the constant presence of evil people, evil political events, natural disasters and self-inflicted damage makes people learn lessons that they would never choose in the context of their idea of a “perfect life”. Spiritual evolution is probably faster during an earth life than it is in the “friction free” atmosphere of the summerlands. On earth, you are forced to make the best use of your free will in totally unexpected circumstances. That’s the reason you are here.
In addition, many less evolved souls cannot conceptualize an existence without a physical body and a material world to live in. For them, existence in a world of pure intellect would be an entirely alien concept. In order to aspire to a higher ideal a soul would have to have at least some sense of what it was striving to attain, and some people live such disordered and primitive lives that they have not yet evolved beyond their base instinctual urges. They never look up because they have spent their whole lives looking down. These souls would reincarnate on earth simply because they do not know that there are better places to live. This is especially true of those souls who have never risen above their places in the winterlands and the hells. Their existences in the world of spirit is, at minimum, less pleasant than those of the souls in the summerlands, and their main desire would be to live again on earth where their lives might be an improvement over the negativity of their native spiritual homes.
Some souls may enjoy their lives in matter so much that they want a repeat performance. Some may feel that their first life was such a disaster, that they want a do-over. Others could have an ongoing project that they want to see to its conclusion. Perhaps a group of souls will reincarnate together to finish unresolved conflicts. And of course some may want to reincarnate because life in matter is simply more fun. It’s really just a matter of free will!
As was mentioned in chapter 8, eternity is a very long time. A frictionless thousand years in the summerlands gets boring and generally compels even relatively content souls to desire a change of venue. While the more highly evolved souls in this situation will opt to progress to a higher and more challenging plane, others who long to indulge in the more animal-like pleasures of earth will opt to go downward for another round of earth life. Stafford Betty has told of a passage he read in Letters from the Afterlife, channeled by Elsa Barker in 1914.
Judge David Patterson Hatch was a rather remarkable man in life:
“Hatch gives an example of a spirit who eagerly waited for his earth lover to die. When she did, they were reunited and lived in a “state of subjective bliss” that excluded almost every other experience: Now they have each other; they are in “the little house” which he built for her with so much pleasure out of the tenuous materials of the tenuous world; they see each other’s faces whether they look out or in; they are content; they have nothing more to attain (or so they tell each other), and they consequently sink back into the arms of subjective bliss…. They will enjoy it, I fancy, for a long time, living over the past experiences which they have had together and apart. Then someday one or the other of them will become surfeited with too much sweetness; the muscles of his (or her) soul will stretch for want of exercise; he (or she) will give a spiritual yawn, and by the law of reaction, pass out—not to return. Where will they go, you ask? Why, back to the earth, of course! It’s worth noting that Hatch himself is in no hurry to reincarnate.”
BY: Betty, Stafford. Heaven and Hell Unveiled: Updates from the World of Spirit. (p. 129). White Crow Productions Ltd.. Kindle Edition.
QUOTED FROM: Barker, Elsa. Letters from the Afterlife: A Guide to the Other Side (p. 121). Atria Books/Beyond Words. 1914. Kindle Edition.