How the Major Religions View Reincarnation


The Qur'an (or Koran), the holy book of Islam, has no direct reference to reincarnation, and there are only a few passages that may suggest a concept of rebirth, such as the following: "God generates beings and sends them back over and over again, 'til they return to Him." Orthodox Islamic scholars generally frown upon the concept of transmigration.

However, the Islamic mystical sect of Persia, the Sufis, carries on the ancient teachings of rebirth as espoused by Moorish and Saracenic philosophers in the schools of Baghdad and Cordova. The Sufis claim to keep alive the Islamic esoteric philosophies and maintain that reincarnation is an important doctrine. The Sufi poet Jalalu 'D-Din Rumi (1207–1273) wrote these lines that are often quoted as containing the essence of transmigration: "I died as mineral and became a plant; I died as plant and rose to animal; I died as animal and I was Man.…Yet once more I shall die as Man, to soar with angels blest; but even from angelhood I must pass on.…"

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