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Fox Mulder, standing on a field where he believes he died on in one of his past lives, speaks: "At times, I almost dream. I, too, have spent a life thes ages' way and tread once more familiar paths. Perchance, I've perished in an arrogant self-reliance an age ago, and in that act, a prayer for one more chance went up so earnest, so... Instinct with better light let in by death that life was blotted out not so completely, but scattered wrecks, enough of it to remain dim memories... as now... when seems once more the goal insight again."

I have a problem with this beautiful text. First, "...spent a life thes ages' way..." Is this some ancient word or construction or do you think it is a misspelling and it should be "these ages' way"? Mulder sounds like saying "thes", not "these".
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Comments  (Page 2) 
At times I almost dream
I too have spent a life the sages' way,
And tread once more familiar paths. Perchance
I perished in an arrogant self-reliance
Ages ago; and in that act a prayer
For one more chance went up so earnest, so
Instinct with better light let in by death,
That life was blotted out -- not so completely
But scattered wrecks enough of it remain,
Dim memories, as now, when once more seems
The goal in sight again.
I realize time has passed since this post, but being both a literature geek and an X-Files fan I felt obliged to reply. Best of all, I am familiar with the poem Fox Mulder is reciting.

The lines come from a poem titled "Paracelsus" by Robert Browning, 1850.
[Research the interesting guy the poem is titled after]

The disputed line from your post is not "spent a life these ages' way" but "Spent a life the sage's way."

Here is the segment of the poem that Mulder recites. It appears on pages 22 and 23 of the text:

At times I almost dream---
I too have spent a life the Sages' way,
And tread once more familiar paths. Perchance
I perish'd in an arrogant self-reliance
An age ago; and in that act, a prayer
For one more chance went up so earnest,so
Instinct with better light let in by Death,
That life was blotted out-not so completely
But scatter'd wrecks enough remain to wake
Dim memories; as now, when once more seems
The goal in sight again.

- From "Paracelsus" by Robert Browning

Hope this helps. The poem reveals the influence of Eastern Philosophy on 19th century writers. The poem has thematic similarities to Rumi's "The Guesthouse"

-Ron Valle
Chicago
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Hi Ron,

Thank you for a very interesting and instructive post.

Clive
The correct line is in fact "the sages' way".
i spent my life the sages way, the sages is wise person.. Emotion: smile
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its "SAGE'S" way, its an old english word, look it up
Hi. This is quoted by Mulder from a play by Robert Browning. If the English seems odd, it's because Browning lived during the late 1800s, the Victorian Era in England. So to spend a life "the sage's way" is to spend life thinking, essentially, musing over things, always imagining and examining, most likely, which although written originally by Browning for the play Paracelcius, parallels Mulder's situation in "The Field Where I Died."
I love this its such a beautiful poem. Its actually by Browning - Ive ofound the below which gives all details xx

As for the doctrine of reincarnation, Browning touches upon it several times, in Paracelsus, his earliest poem of consequence, and elsewhere. It is Paracelsus who says:
"At times I almost dream
I too have spent a life the sage's way,
And tread once more familiar paths.
Perchance
I perished in an arrogant self-reliance
Ages ago; and in that act, a prayer
For one more chance went up so earnest, so
Instinct with better light let in by death,
That life was blotted out — not so completely
But scattered wrecks enough of it remain,
Dim memories, as now, when once more seems
The goal in sight again."
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It's "The sage's way." There is no period after "dream." So it is: "At times I almost dream I too have spent a life the sage's way..."
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