"he slipped out of his Self in a thousand different forms"

"To be born here and to die here, to die here and to be born elsewhere,To be born there and to die there, to die there and to be born elsewhere -That is the round of existence."   

- Buddhist Text: Milinda's Questions 77

The theory of Samsara is associated with the belief that one continues to be born and reborn in various realms in the form of a human, animal, or other being based on the karma in one’s past life. According to Jain texts, if evil karma can cause a person to be reborn as a plant or even as a rock.

"To attain to the human form must always be a source of joy. And then to undergo continuous transitions, with only the infinite to look forward to: what incomparable bliss is that!" - Lao Tse (Tao Te Ch'ing)

In the Buddhist concept of Samsara, human beings crave pleasure and produce the causes and conditions of the next rebirth after death. Each rebirth repeats this process in an involuntary cycle whereby beings go through a succession of life times in any one of the many possible forms of life, culminating in death.

"Samsara - the Wheel of Existence, literally, the "Perpetual Wandering"- is the symbol of this continuous process of birth, old age, suffering and death. (It) is constantly changing from moment to moment, (as lives) follow continuously one upon the other through inconceivable periods of time. Of this Samsara, a single lifetime constitutes only a vanishingly tiny fraction." - Gautama Buddha