In Jainism, the soul or living spirit. Jivas are believed to be eternal and infinite in number. Many are bound to earthly existence by karma that requires them to move through the cycle of rebirth in successive bodies. Eventually a jiva may obtain release, whereupon a replacement is promoted from the lowest class of jivas, the tiny invisible souls called nigodas that fill the whole space of the world.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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