Reincarnation is a dance. It's a movement of life to the rhythm of the universe.
The idea is simple. There is spirit and there is matter, and they join together - one as one dancing partner and one as the other. The two together make a dance. They're together for a time while they're on the dance floor, and then they separate and go their individual ways for a while. Then they come together and dance again, and it goes on forever.
The spirit, the eternal part of our being, is indescribable and limitless. We are eternal spirits. As spirits we have always existed in a generalized form, since we are all part of the universe, the spirit of the universe. As individual spirits, we've existed for a timeless time and in that time, we have participated in the dance of reincarnation. Reincarnation means simply that we have lived before, we live now and we'll live again. That there is no end to life and that death is only a brief pause in our journey. It's a rest. When we have reached the end of a lifetime, we rest. The dancers take a break. And then off we go again, with a new partner, with a new body, with a new life.
Reincarnation is a cyclic process. The idea is that there are endless levels of creation, different universes, you might say, or dimensions. And in each one, something similar is taking place; evolution, the evolution of spirit through matter. Now, to say that matter and spirit are different is a way of talking. It's a way of trying to discuss something. They're not necessarily different in that they both come from the eternal light. Samsara, the world of experience, temporal experience, and nirvana, the world of enlightenment, are really one. That's an apprehension that you will have some day in the world of enlightened experience. But for discussion purposes, it's certainly a lot easier to separate them.
If you do well within this life, then that knowledge, that awareness, will be held within you, within the causal structure, the part of us that lives from one lifetime to another.
So, reincarnation is a process that is going on in endless dimensions. But let's just look at our own because, while the forms differ, the process is the same. If we can understand how one city works, while it won't tell us how all cities are or all about them, it will give us a central understanding that's probably applicable in most situations.
In this universe, meaning the world of the earth that we live on, people are at different levels of evolution. They may all have human bodies, but the souls are different. Some souls are more advanced. Some souls are less advanced - advanced in the sense that they are more aware of their possibilities. Advanced souls seek enlightenment. Souls that are not as advanced seek happiness and pleasure in sensorial experience. The more advanced soul has learned that happiness, that fulfillment, doesn't really come from simply leading a physical life. It can be enjoyable. It can be painful. It can be a combination of both. But real happiness comes from absorption in the world of spirit, in the world of light, in the worlds of enlightenment.
The advanced soul is really the discussion point in our journey through reincarnation. Your interest in the subject would suggest that you are more advanced than most individuals because most individuals on earth are not drawn to the higher light at this time. That doesn't in any way make you or anyone who's interested in such things, superior to anyone else. If you're in eighth grade, you're not better than someone who's in the fourth grade. You were in fourth grade, now you are in eighth. The people in fourth will one day be in eighth. It's a progression.
But what's interesting about reincarnation, from the point of view of the more advanced soul, let's say, is how the process works. That is, where am I, what are my possibilities, is there some way that I can know this system better so that I can gain more out of it? That's the perspective of the more advanced soul.