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The cycle of rebirth or reincarnation is a concept that is central to Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, and other Indian religions. The Sanskrit term for this process is samsara, which means “wandering.” Other cognate phrases include the “transmigration of the soul” and “the cycle of successive existence;” it is also called “the karmic cycle.” The notion of the cycle of rebirth was fundamental to ancient Greek philosophy, such as the philosophy of Plato and Pythagoras. It is premised on the understanding that death is not the final end—it signals the end of that particular life—but the end of one life leads to the beginning of another life. Death is a moment in the cycle of change. Life is construed as a series of rebirths that ...

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