Saturday, March 29, 2008

Soul Mates

I find that there is a lot of controversy in the idea of a soul mate. Some people truly believe in them, others think it's a silly idea. I guess what I want to know is, what do you think?

Are we truly destined for just one person? Do we have a couple soul mates? Does it differ from person to person? Might one person not have a soul mate? Do people have love soul mates and friend soul mates? I mean, how do we define soul mate anyway?

I know some people think it's silly, something people made up to make them feel better when they're either single and trying to be optimistic or when they're with someone and they want that comfort that it's all "meant to be."

I do believe that everything happens for a reason (as I've mentioned about a thousand times so far in this blog), and that includes who we're with. I guess you could call it a soul mate, but I think that a soul mate is someone who connects with your soul. They know you better than you know yourself. They say things that can offend you so that you can take the right path and grow, they are there for us when we truly mess up, they can look into your eyes and see through you, they are ever-loving. Now, I think this can be true for friends and lovers. I think we can have soul mate friends. I know I have two.

This whole question was brought up for me because I am in the middle of reading Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. She has a passage on soul mates and I want to copy it here:

"Your problem is that you don't understand what that word [soul mate] means. People think that a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that's what everyone wants. But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that's holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life. A true soul mate is probably the most important person you'll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. But to live with a soul mate forever? Nah. Too painful. Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then they leave. And thank God for it."

Do you agree with this? I mean, I think that some people can live with their soul mates forever and still uncover their issues and help them to grow. That's just my opinion?

What do you think of soul mates? Don't be afraid to be honest.


Diane said...

I personally don't regard the term "soul mate" as the love of your life. I believe that there are many people who come into your life, whether for a good or an unpleasant experience, that could be termed "soul mates". They reveal parts of yourself to yourself and force you to grow in awareness. You are one of my soul mates. And, I believe you can live forever after in the company of a soul mate.

Mike said...

"soul mates" what a profound and powerful term. But why? Lets try to dissect this word a little bit. We'll start with the word "soul". What is a soul? Is it everything one of us is that is not physically tangible? The rudiments of our character? The derivative of our attitude? It's a word that seems as if it's definition is at the tip of my tongue, but when it comes down to it i just cannot grasp it. defines soul as the spiritual part of humans as distinct from the physical part. ok, kind of vague but lets go with it.

So now we're left with the word "mate", which i think is a little bit easier to define. I think of a mate as one of a pair, it could be a sexual pair or a pair of friends. Regardless, either pair makes a whole. The word "friends" essentially required two at its creation. Shoes are "mates". Two shoes are "shoes" and two friends are "friends". The singular of "friends" is friend and of "shoes" is shoe.

I hope this makes sense because i would have to sit here for a couple of hours to figure out how to explain it otherwise. Basically i'm trying to say that the word "mate" could never exist without there being two "mates"

Ok, so back to "soul mates". Soul mates are really one soul mate and another soul mate which make up soul mates.

So i think that the word "soul mates" really is only a reflection of the product of a relationship as a whole. Perhaps the "state of mind" that only you and your mate share. But it's more than that, actually i don't think there is even a word for it yet. i use the term "state of mind" very loosely, among other things a state of mind consists of sensations, jokes, attitudes, experiences, sentiments... everything only the two of you share which is one thing. That thing we don't have a word for.

so i am soul mates with anyone i am involved with, because we share a "spiritual part" together. I consider the spiritual part i share with some people greater and far more profound than with others, those are the people i call "soul-mates"

Jami said...

I really enjoyed reading these reactions. I like both of your responses--very true and honest. I think the term gets thrown around pretty loosely, but I like the definitions you concocted despite the difficulty in doing so.

Megan B said...

I think that this is one of your most provocative posts. They're all great, but this one is greater-er. So much conversation and feedback on the topic too!

I think that "Mike" provided a brilliant interpretation of the idea of soul mates. Pretty much brilliant to break down the term and create a whole definition from each part.

I must disagree with the second half of the quotation. I believe that a person can have many soul mates (best friends with a more spiritual connection, if you will).
I don't think that every "soul mate" connection that a person has is only temporary. Putting a time frame, however indefinite, is simply too subjective to one person's opinion. Each individual person, or pair of "mates" must be the only ones to define their "mateship." A pair of people could meet for five minutes, exchange a life-altering conversation or experience, and deem themselves "soul mates." On the contrary, two people could develop a relationship and deem themselves soul mates for life. Why does the mateship have to end because some Joe Schmoe says it's supposed to?

And couldn't it also be that two people never acknowledge their soul mateship, but by all standards they are, in fact, soul mates?