reincarnated Hindu saints

Ulrich T. Kragh utkragh at HUM.KU.DK
Fri Nov 6 12:40:18 UTC 2009

In Mahayana Buddhism, and particularly in Tibetan Buddhism, there is the common belief that earlier saints can be reincarnated, or - avoiding the samsarically loaded word "reincarnated - literally 'emanated' (nirmita/nirmitaka/nirmika), in the form of later holy men and women. I am here not referring to the notion that a saint may be an embodiment of a deity, like the Hindu notion of avatAra, which also is included in the Buddhist notion of nirmita. Rather, I am thinking of cases where a concrete person is said to be a reincarnation of a former concrete person. For example, the fifteenth-century Tibetan female saint Samding Dorje Phagmo Chokyi Dronma was said to be a reincarnation of the Indian female saint LaksmIMkarA. 
My question: are there any comparable cases in Hinduism? If yes, it would be nice with a bibliographical reference.
With best regards,
Dr. Ulrich Timme Kragh
Assistant Professor
Geumgang Center for Buddhist Studies
Geumgang University, Dae-myeong Ri, Sang-wol Myeon
Nonsan-si, Chungnam 320-931, Republic of Korea
Tel. +82-41-731 3618

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