The Concept of Reincarnation in African Metaphysics: A Philosophical Appraisal of Peter Alawa’s Ideas
sapientia journal vol 18




The concept of reincarnation is a key theme in African metaphysics. It presupposes rebirth with consciousness and mental capacity to recollect events and experiences that occurred in previous existence. Africans believe in the perpetuity of life and see reincarnation as a medium of doing it. Yet, this medium of life's perpetuity attracts a lot of curiosity and philosophical questions. It is one of those areas in African philosophy that are in need of critical exploration. Peter Alawa makes some scholarly reflection on the topic of reincarnation. Central in his view, is the idea that reincarnation must be only with the same gender. The paper examines the rationality of African belief in reincarnation within the perspective of Alawa's ideas, showing its strengths and weaknesses. It adopts the textual analysis method and employs hermeneutic phenomenology in its exploration and interpretations. Its epistemological value consists in its exposition of topical issues surrounding reincarnation in African ontology and therefore contributes to this topic, which has been one of the areas in need of further researches. It concludes that African belief in reincarnation is authentic and plausible to the African people but needs more evaluations. It therefore, recommends an adaptation of the concept of reincarnation in contemporary African philosophy.