(HPB, Theosophical Glossary, p. 277)
The putting on of flesh periodically by the Soul or the Ego, was a universal belief; nor can anything be more consonant with justice and Karmic law. (See "Pre-existence")
(HPB, Theosophical Glossary, p. 261-62)
Pre-existence: The term used to denote that we have lived before. The same as reincarnation in the past. . . It is the oldest and the most universally accepted belief from an immemorial antiquity. . . The Bible hints at it more than once, St. John the Baptist being regarded as the reincarnation of Elijah, and the Disciples asking whether the blind man was born blind because of his sins, which is equal to saying that he had lived and sinned before being born blind. It was the work of spiritual progression and soul discipline. A turn of the wheel gave a chance for the development of neglected or abused intelligence and feeling, hence the popularity of reincarnation in all climes and times. . . Verily "an evil act follows a man, passing through one hundred thousand transmigrations" (Panchatantra). Herodotus tells his readers, that the Egyptians "are the earliest who have spoken of this doctrine, according to which the soul of man is immortal, and after the destruction of the body, enters into a newly born being" . . . The funeral books of the Egyptians say plainly "that resurrection was in reality, but a renovation, leading to a new infancy, and a new youth".
(HPB, Secret Doctrine, Vol. II, p. 306)
Intimately, or rather indissolubly, connected with Karma, then, is the law of re-birth, or of the re-incarnation of the same spiritual individuality in a long, almost interminable, series of personalities. The latter are like the various costumes and characters played by the same actor, with each of which that actor identifies himself and is identified by the public, for the space of a few hours. The inner, or real man, who personates those characters, knows the whole time that he is Hamlet for the brief space of a few acts, which represent, however, on the plane of human illusion the whole life of Hamlet. And he knows that he was, the night before, King Lear, the transformation in his turn of the Othello of a still earlier preceding night; but the outer, visible character is supposed to be ignorant of the fact.
(HPB, Key To Theosophy, p. 154-55)
. . . For logic, consistency, profound philosophy, divine mercy and equity, this doctrine of Reincarnation has not its equal on earth. It is a belief in a perpetual progress for each incarnating Ego, or divine soul, in an evolution from the outward into the inward, from the material to the Spiritual, arriving at the end of each stage at absolute unity with the divine Principle. From strength to strength, from the beauty and perfection of one plane to the greater beauty and perfection of another, with accessions of new glory, of fresh knowledge and power in each cycle, such is the destiny of every Ego, which thus becomes its own Saviour in each world and incarnation.
(HPB, Secret Doctrine, Vol. II, p. 424)
That which is part of our souls is eternal. . . Those lives are countless, but the soul or spirit that animates us throughout these myriads of existences is the same; and though "the book and volume" of the physical brain may forget events within the scope of one terrestrial life, the bulk of collective recollections can never desert the divine soul within us. Its whispers may be too soft, the sound of its words too far off the plane perceived by our physical senses; yet the shadow of events that were, just as much as the shadow of the events that are to come, is within its perceptive powers, and is ever present before its mind's eye.
(HPB, Secret Doctrine, Vol. I, p. 16-17)
Second and Third Fundamental Propositions of the Secret Doctrine
The One REALITY; its dual aspects in the conditioned Universe.
"Pilgrim" is the appellation given to our Monad (the two in one) during its cycle of incarnations. It is the only immortal and eternal principle in us, being an indivisible part of the integral whole-the Universal spirit, from which it emanates, and into which it is absorbed at the end of the cycle. When it is said to emanate from the one spirit. an awkward and incorrect expression has to be used, for lack of appropriate words in English. The Vedantins call it Sutratma (Thread-Soul), but their explanation, too, differs somewhat from that of the occultists; to explain which difference, however, is left to the Vedantins themselves.
(Wm. Q. Judge, Echoes From The Orient, p. 7)
Man is spiritual being -- a soul , in other words -- and that this soul takes on different bodies from life to life on earth to order at last to arrive at such perfect knowledge, through repeated experience, as to enable one to assume a body fit to be the dwelling-place of a Mahatma or perfected soul. Then, they say, that particular soul becomes a spiritual helper to mankind.
(Wm. Q. Judge, Echoes From The Orient, p. 16)
The Ego of each man is immortal; "always was existent, always will be, and never can be non-existent"; appearing now and again, and reappearing, clothed in bodies on each occasion different, it only appears to be mortal; it always remains the substratum and support for the personality acting upon the stage of life.
(Wm. Q. Judge, Ocean Of Theosophy, p. 81)
The mere selfish desire of a person to escape the trials and discipline of life is not enough to set nature's laws aside, so the soul must be reborn until it has ceased to set in motion the cause of rebirth, after having developed character up to its possible limit as indicated by all the varieties of human nature, when every experience has been passed through, and not until all of truth that can be known has been acquired. The vast disparity among men in respect to capacity compels us, if we wish to ascribe justice to Nature or to God, to admit reincarnation and to trace the origin of the disparity back to the past lives of the Ego.
(Wm. Q. Judge, Ocean Of Theosophy, p. 83)
It is not reasonable to suppose that either God or nature
projects us into a body simply to fill us with bitterness because
we can have no other opportunity here, but rather we must conclude
that a series of incarnations has led to the present condition,
and that the process of coming here again and again must go on
for the purpose of affording us the opportunity needed.
(HPB, The Secret Doctrine, Vol. I, pgs. 634-647, "Cyclic
Evolution & Karma")
(HPB, The Key To Theosophy, Section XI, "Mysteries Of Re-incarnation")
(HPB, Articles, "Our Cycle & the Next")
(Wm. Q. Judge, The Ocean Of Theosophy, Ch's VIII, IX &
(Wm. Q. Judge, Articles, "Reincarnation In The Bible")
(Wm. Q. Judge, Articles, "Reincarnation Of Animals")