I was asked to examine the Reincarnation page on Catholic Answers website through the eyes of Origen.
There is much on this website that is outright false, especially their claim: “Actually, he was one of the most prolific early writers against reincarnation!” Origen was the most prolific Christian scholar ever, period. This means that he examined both sides of the arguments to determine which side was valid. Taken out of context, some of his writings can prove almost anything. But since he was the author of the theory named The Restoration of All Things, reincarnation is a key component to this theory.
The website states that the second council of Constantinople says nothing about reincarnation, but this is not true. The first anathemas against Origen were about the concept of the pre-existence of the soul and this is the basis of reincarnation. The final anathema was against the concept that all the fallen will eventually be restored to heaven. This is the core teaching of early Christianity – not one will be lost! (Luke 15:4-5)
The website quotes Origen’s Commentary on John 6:7, but this section of Origen’s commentary on John is one of the many that do not exist in his original Greek. The only copies of this section of the text are from the ones that Rufinus translated into Latin and adjusted to the doctrines established by the church. They are using their own doctrines to justify their doctrines.
I find it interesting that the website references Shirley MacLaine they completely ignore the large amount of research that has been gathered since Shirley MacLaine by Dr. Ian Stevenson and Dr. Jim Tucker.