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30 Quotes on Reincarnation

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The theory of reincarnation, which has its roots in ancient Hindu philosophy, influenced many a great Western mind. Here're some eye-opening thoughts on reincarnation from renowned personalities.

1. "I am confident that there truly is such a thing as living again, that the living spring from the dead, and that the souls of the dead are in existence."
- Socrates

2. "The soul comes from without into the human body, as into a temporary abode, and it goes out of it anew… it passes into other habitations, for the soul is immortal."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

3. "I am no Hindu, but I hold the doctrine of the Hindus concerning a future state (rebirth) to be incomparably more rational, more pious, and more likely to deter men from vice than the horrid opinions inculcated by Christians on punishments without end."
- William Jones

4. "As far back as I can remember I have unconsciously referred to the experiences of a previous state of existence."
- Henry David Thoreau

5. "I know I am deathless…We have thus far exhausted trillions of winters and summers, / There are trillions ahead, and trillions ahead of them."
- Walt Whitman

6. Doctrine of reincarnation is neither absurd nor useless. "It is not more surprising to be born twice than once."
- Voltaire

7. "I am certain that I have been here as I am now a thousand times before, and I hope to return a thousand times."
- Goethe

8. "I did not begin when I was born, nor when I was conceived. I have been growing, developing, through incalculable myriads of millenniums… All my previous selves have their voices, echoes, promptings in me… Oh, incalculable times again shall I be born."
- Jack London

9. "There is no death. How can there be death if everything is part of the Godhead? The soul never dies and the body is never really alive."
- Isaac Bashevis Singer, Nobel Laureate

10. "He saw all these forms and faces in a thousand relationships… become newly born. Each one was mortal, a passionate, painful example of all that is transitory. Yet none of them died, they only changed, were always reborn, continually had a new face: only time stood between one face and another."
- Herman Hesse, Nobel Laureate

11. "As we live through thousands of dreams in out present life, so is our present life only one of many thousands of such lives which we enter from the other more real life… and then return after death. Our life is but one of the dreams of that more real life, and so it is endlessly, until the very last one, the very real life of God."
- Count Leo Tolstoy

12. " 'Do you have any idea how many lives we must have gone through before we even got the first idea that there is more to life than eating, or fighting, or power in the Flock? A thousand lives, Jon, ten thousand!… We choose our next world though what we learn in this one… But you, Jon, learned so much at one time that you didn't have to go through a thousand lives to reach this one.'"
- Richard Bach (Jonathan Livingston Seagull)

13. "Finding myself to exist in the world, I believe I shall, in some shape or other, always exist."
- Benjamin Franklin

14. "Were an Asiatic to ask me for a definition of Europe, I should be forced to answer him: It is that part of the world which is haunted by the incredible delusion that man was created out of nothing, and that his present birth is his first entrance into life."
- Arthur Schopenhauer, 19th century German philosopher

15. "The souls must reenter the absolute substance whence they have emerged. But to accomplish this, they must develop all the perfections, the germ of which is planted in them; and if they have not fulfilled this condition during one life, they must commence another, a third, and so forth, until they have acquired the condition which fits them for reunion with God."
- Zohar, one of the principal Cabalistic texts

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