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Transmigration of Souls
(2,146 words)

In practice no clear distinction is made between the expressions metempsychosis, metensomatosis, palingenesis, re-incarnation and transmigration. Older writers (Plotinus and the Fathers) preferred to use metensomatosis Palingenesis is a notion with a much broader connotation, in some sort of way presupposed by the more systematic ideas involved in that of metempsychosis.

Many cultures without written traditions (the so-called primitives) hold that the principle of life of a living being can pass into another after death, without having to remain…

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Étienne Cornélis, “Transmigration of Souls”, in: Sacramentum Mundi Online, General Editor Karl Rahner, SJ. Consulted online on 26 September 2023 <>
First published online: 2016

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