Shirley MacLaine's Past Lives

Inspired by today’s Cecil Classic about past lives I’m curious: has Shirley MacLaine ever recanted her past lives stories? I haven’t heard much from her lately, has she backed away at all from her former mysticism?

Although a column inspired it, this question is not about the column itself so I put this in GQ, if this is inappropriate let me know. I guess it also could be in CS but I am just asking a question…

No, she hasn’t. She makes reference to her past lives in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly magazine.

She’s gotten even loopier on the subject. Her most recent book claims that her dog in this incarnation (a Rat Terrier) has not only been her dog in other incarnations but was once the god Anubis (as evidenced by its ears).

My dog is part rat terrier and has huge ears also- in fact he looks more like Anubis than hers does. Funny, I just always put it down to breed characteristic.

Incidentally, Sir Anthony Hopkins is usually gentlemanly enough not to bash former co-stars, but he’s said at least twice that Shirley MacLaine is the one co-star he would never work with again regardless of the role or the money.

Wow! I understand people going through spiritual phases where they try out all the new age theories, but such a high profile (and seemingly intelligent in other aspects) person keeping with it (and I guess getting worse) is just mind boggling!

One’s spiritual beliefs are not scientific matters, and can’t be proved or disproved. It’s got nothing to do with rational systems of understanding.

When you’re claiming that your spirituality allows you to channel a book written by your dog (who used to be a god), you can danged sure say that “nothing to do with ration” part twice.

Maybe so, but I’m still suspicious of the dozens of people who claim that in a past life they were clepatra, or helen of troy, or Napoleon, or Caesar, or whatever.

Phshaw! I was Henry the Eighth, I was!

I was married to the widow next door.

I have had zillions of past lives. In 99.9% I was a cyanobacterium.
Many times I was a trilobite, and I have been a brachiopod quite a bit. Oh, you mean people? I have been reborn 2,399 times. Every time I was a peasant.

It’s like Crash Davis said (more or less) in Bull Durham:

“How come every reincarnated person was someone famous? How come no one was ever Joe Blow?”

I guess kirsten was, but she’s the only one I’ve heard to admit to it.

Well, I’m not including the fact that I was the ape that got beaned on the skull with a thighbone in 2001. I died shortly thereafter, and was reincarnated as a bird that crapped on the ape that beat me.

Ain’t that justice?!?

When I used to believe in reincarnation as a teenager, I always assumed I was a Nazi in my past life and that this was why I loved WW2 movies. Now I think I just love WW2 movies.

I attended a New Age seminar once in which a past life regression was the keynote event. It was a “group hypnosis” type thing. The hypnotist very specifically said “see only your happiest memories from that life”. Later we were invited to share.

One woman saw herself as a young princess in medieval Germany (neat trick in and of itself since there wasn’t a medieval Germany) who was being forced to marry a much older man she didn’t love but was secretly in love with a court musician. (Which romance novel does that remind me of… oh yeah, I remember, all of them.) Another saw herself as a witch in the 18th century English countryside who was burned for practicing her religion. Another, a middle aged redneck man, cried while recounting while he saw his hands bound in front of him facing up and was being taken to be tortured, and this explained why he held his hands like that when he was stressed in his current life. Another man saw himself as a beautiful young woman being kidnapped and taken onto a Greek slave ship.

With the last two I kept wondering “this was your HAPPIEST memory? Damn, what a crappy life that was.” And a witch in 18th century England (where there were no witch burnings) was also pretty cool. Nobody saw themselves as an Asian subsistence farmer, which law of averages would dictate at least one of them would have been. (I saw nothing and was one of a few people who said so- it wasn’t for lack of trying or will, because at the time I semi-believed and really wanted to see something.)
I wonder if times/places depicted in movies (e.g. the American Civil War, ancient Rome, WW2) are more likely to figure in “past life memories” than those that are rarely depicted on popular western films (ancient India, 13th century American Indian cultures, feudal China, etc.).