blàr anam [48]

“For the lot of man and of beast is one lot; the one dies as well as the other. Both have the same life-breath, and man has no advantage over the beast; but all is vanity. Both go to the same place; both were made from the dust, and to the dust they both return. Who knows if the life-breath of the children of men goes upward and the life-breath of beasts goes earthward?”
–Ecclesiastes 3.19-21

“He [Empedocles] is one of those fallen spirits exiled from heaven by decree of Necessity, and doomed to be ‘born in all manner of mortal forms, changing one for another of the painful paths of life’. ‘I have been ere now a boy and a girl, a bush and a bird, and a dumb fish of the sea’. His claim to have been reincarnated in each of the four elements has astonishingly close parallels in Celtic literature. In the Irish story of Mongan (an Ulster king who, according to the annals, died in A.D. 625) and the fili Forgoll the possession of mantic powers is associated with metempsychosis. Mongan’s father, the god Manannan, fortells the life and death of his son: ‘He will be in the shape of every beast…a wolf…a stag…a spotted salmon in a full pool…a seal…a swan, etc’.”
–F.M. Cornford, Principium Sapientiae: The Origins of Greek Philosophical Thought

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