Soul Mates and Relationships Articles


What Is a Soulmate?

by Nina Lee Braden

What is a soul mate? Is it a buzz word being tossed around by New Agers and Romance publishers in order to increase book sales and seminar fees? Is soulmate just another term for true love or is it something else, something more, something bigger and deeper? 

Good question, and I don't have a clear answer. If you browse the Web, searching under the term "soulmate," you'll find testimonials of How I Found My Soulmate on the Web, and pointers to Personals Ads for you to search for a personal soulmate, but you won't find much hard information on soulmates or much discussion on what a soulmate is. 

There is no definitive theory of soulmates, no accepted definition. Edgar Cayce,
Richard Bach, and Elizabeth Clare Prophet have all written at length on soulmates. Some say that there are different types or categories of soulmates. Three types frequently discussed are the soulmate as an essence twin or counterpart--one's other half, the companion or lover who helps one achieve a goal, and the karmic teacher who comes into your life to teach you an important lesson. For more on different types of Soulmates, see My Soulmate Discovery, Part II. 

A belief in reincarnation is not necessary for a belief in soulmates although a great deal of literature on soulmates does presume a belief in reincarnation. Perhaps I'm just a Soulmates Skeptic, but I just cannot believe that there is one and only one person for each of us. In my own life, and in the lives of many friends, I know that there have been times when we've been convinced that, "This is the one. This person is my One True Love, my Soulmate."

However, often in these cases, for one reason or another, the relationship hasn't
worked out. Were we mistaken? Was that person not our soulmate? Or, was the
person our soulmate, and, for one reason or another, we just weren't able to make things work?

I have no answers; however, I do have a theory of my own. I have a friend who introduced me to the theory of a soul tribe. To her, there are many people who have important connections to us, karmic connections, if you prefer to use that term. To her, these people constitute our soul tribe.

In adapting this idea, I feel that we can have what the popular press seems to call or identify as a soulmate relationship with many different persons who are in our soul tribe. Perhaps in a lifetime, we may run into five, ten, or twenty different persons who are members of our soul tribe, and, under the right circumstances, we could have an intense, karmic, soul-shattering relationship with any one of them, or, with several of them, in some cases.

Another way to think of this is to say that we have multiple soulmates. 

And, although I can't quite swallow the concept of one and only one true love for each of us per lifetime, I can reluctantly allow the possibility of multiple soulmates. I don't think that there is an unlimited supply of soulmates out there for each of us, but I do believe that each of us has one or more persons who can help us to growth and become all that we can be, who will support, honor, shelter, guide, serve, succor, challenge, adore, and love unreservedly. I also think that most of us manage in some way to miss out on these relationships. Therefore, we are always searching for the ideal relationship, the ideal partner, the soulmate, if you will.

Love is love, and love is never to be taken for granted or belittled. To me, the question is not, "Is this person my soulmate?" but "Is there real love here?" not "Who is my soulmate?" but "Do I give and receive love generously and unselfishly?" not "When will I  meet my soulmate?" but "Am I ready to be in an intensely loving relationship, ready to be challenged for growth?" 

Copyright 1996, Nina Lee Braden
All Rights Reserved 
Reprinted here by permission of the author

For more info on the author contact her at the 
following e-mail address or web site.

Susie and Otto Collins
P.O. Box 14544
Columbus, Ohio 43214
(614) 568-8282
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