Pivoting to video with this addition, I saw this on the Book of Faces and thought it was interesting. Its a clip from the movie "Patton", and in a stellar performance George C. Scott absolutely channels the World War 2 warrior General George Patton. Apparently Patton was a poet as well as a student of warfare who wrote a powerful poem in 1922 titled "Through a Glass, Darkly." An brief excerpt of the poem was included in the film, further stanzas are included below, plus a link to the complete poem.
What is interesting to me about this is not that a powerful historical figure believed in reincarnation; the film clip captures his sense of himself as more than his present physical being. What is striking is his spiritual fatigue at repeating the same battles, literal battles, over and over, from both sides of the conflict: being the commander, being the foot soldier, being the attacker and the defender.
Through the travail of the agesMidst the pomp and toil of warHave I fought and strove and perishedCountless times upon this star.In the form of many peopleIn all panoplies of timeHave I seen the luring visionOf the Victory Maid, sublime.I have sinned and I have sufferedPlayed the hero and the knaveFought for belly, shame or countryAnd for each have found a grave.I cannot name my battlesFor the visions are not clear,Yet, I see the twisted facesAnd I feel the rending spear.Perhaps I stabbed our SaviorIn His sacred helpless side.Yet, I've called His name in blessingWhen after times I died.So as through a glass and darklyThe age long strife I seeWhere I fought in many guises,Many names - but always me.So forever in the futureShall I battle as of yore,Dying to be born a fighterBut to die again once more.
More info about Patton’s belief’s in reincarnation here and the entire poem-