Whenever we delve into a history around a common phrase, it never ceases to amaze just how wide the scope of varying interpretations can be. Today’s focus on the phrase soul mate, often spelled soulmate, is no exception.
Merriam Webster defines soul mate as “a person who is perfectly suited to another in temperament.”
Seems simple enough.
But despite the simplicity of the core definition, many people have added social constructs or stipulations to this central meaning. Many of these additions have become synonymous to the common usage of the term.
Surely many of you reading this article have the assumption that soul mate refers to a relationship that can come only once per lifetime, and is generally specified as a romantic partner.
But if we take this term back to its central definition, a soul mate can be interpreted as any person who enters your life that you feel a mutual connection with- most often measured in reciprocal temperaments.
The notion of the soul mate pops ups numerous times throughout history dating back to Greek philosopher, Plato’s On the Soul writings and the mythology surrounding Zeus & Apollo. The idea of soulmates re-appears in numerous religions of the world, seeing each add their own social constructs along the way to fit the different religious narratives.
It’s not uncommon for many people to acknowledge a feeling about another person upon meeting for the first time. The senses experienced during a first encounter can range from an urge to flee to a sense of security or comfort.
It is said that when one first encounters a soul mate, a feeling of familiarity or sense that one has ‘known this person my entire life’.
Soul mates often exhibit an instant connection and bond that draws the relationship closer and grows stronger over time.
Many will encounter more than one soul mate and can benefit greatly by having several soul-mates throughout a lifetime.
We all meet many people over the course of a lifetime and a soul mate can enter quickly or leave just as quickly, while others may stay forever.
No matter how you define soul mate, the general consensus we’ve come to understand by delving into this phrase is one that urges us all to make to most of the time we have with people we feel most connected with and to let them know by our daily actions.