Are soul mates a deterrent to spiritual growth?

While reading Scott Cunningham’s Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner, I came across an interesting concept. Cunningham was discussing the spiral of rebirth and reincarnation, detailing how many believe it works. Essentially, each time our souls are born, it is with certain goals to be accomplished. We are born as many times as necessary to walk the full journey of life, to reach the epitome of knowledge and understanding, to reach Nirvana. Cunningham advises us to be wary of perceived soul mates. He says that though your feelings and dedication to this one individual may be sincere, you could easily meet many more people with whom you feel the same bond. He goes on to explain that if each of us is tied with another soul through death and rebirth, then we will continue to be reborn with that other soul tied to us, stopping us from learning what we need to in each life. “. . .Announcing that you’ve found your soul mate is rather akin to stating that you’re not progressing on the incarnational spiral,” he concludes.

This struck me because in all my wanderings I’d never questioned the concept of soul mates. I wouldn’t say that I’ve ever really believed in one person being born for only for another, but soul mates are a solid part of my thinking. If they’re not tied together by the gods or themselves, then they are made in each lifetime. So I asked myself: Are soul mates as a concept a way to stop spiritual growth, a soul-journey companion, or simply one of many you may meet in any given lifetime that the All has brought to you?

I think my fiancé said it best when I told him about what I’d been reading. He said that people think of soul mates as lovers only, when really there could be two souls tied together that are continually reincarnated within close proximity to each other every life, but in different forms. Partnered souls can be lovers, but they can also be parents, siblings, friends, loved pets, etc. With this ever-changing basis for soul mates, learning doesn’t have to stop. I personally like this idea better than Cunningham’s. Perhaps I am afraid of being alone, but I just feel that people were meant not meant to be alone. They belong in pairs or groups.

“Everything changes, nothing remains without change.” –Buddha

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About Ayslyn'sCorner

I am an eclectic Pagan bordering on atheist who has made her way through a number of different spiritual spaces. You might wonder what a person self-identifying as an atheist has to discuss in a religion/spiritual context – and, well, so do I. That’s one of the things I aim to explore on Ayslyn's Corner. Check out Ayslyn's Corner at http://www.ayslynscorner.wordpress.com Check out Invisible Ink Blog at http://www.whitneycarter.wordpress.com Check out wombs in rebellion at http://wombsinrebellion.wordpress.com/
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7 Responses to Are soul mates a deterrent to spiritual growth?

  1. Lady shardae says:

    I believe in soul mates. I am being trained in Draconian and last month on the dark moon before samhain, we did past life regressions and my fiance was with me in almost every one of my past lives. I recognized his soul. I don’t believe that in every life we will be with our soul mates since in many of mine he

    was not there but I do believe we are two halves of one whole. In my past life regressions, I have seen us fight together and die together. I have seen our love and pain. I have seen his devotion and I know without him, I would be lost. Maybe that is what soul mates are. Guides to uh

  2. Lady shardae says:

    I believe in soul mates. I am being trained in Draconian and last month on the dark moon before samhain, we did past life regressions and my fiance was with me in almost every one of my past lives. I recognized his soul. I don’t believe that in every life we will be with our soul mates since in many of mine he was not there but I do believe we are two halves of one whole. In my past life regressions, I have
    seen us fight together and die together. I have seen our love and pain. I have seen his devotion and I know without him, I would be lost. Maybe that is what soul mates are. Guides to each other and to help each other grow.

  3. Madison Woods says:

    Until I met the man who is now my fiance’ I did not believe in soul mates at all. There has never been anyone in my 45 years that came close to being the mate I needed, although I married twice and divorced twice in an attempt to ‘make’ something work.

    Now, however, I am a firm believer, and I do NOT think he’s going to hold up my spiritual growth. If anything, it has expanded considerably since I’ve been with him and I can only see it continuing.

    Unless I become careless and begin living less of my own life and more of his.

    There’s always the need to remain grounded to oneself, and maybe that’s the danger Cunningham has tapped into. It’s very easy to lose the ‘self’ in a relationship that feels so perfect, and when we do that, we may very well lose touch with our own spiritual growth.

  4. Belle of Mountains says:

    I like the idea that a “soulmate” could take on many forms in your different lives… (in that case, my soulmate is my wonderful feline familiar.) 😉 Do you think we encounter the same group of souls each lifetime, just in different forms/relationships to them? Sort of like the cast to a play? I’m not sure if I believe that, but I’ve heard it mentioned….

    Blessed be!

    • I don’t think we only encounter a set number of souls as we travel through many lives, but that it is possible we encounter the same soul in different forms. I feel like souls, no matter what physical form they take, are social things that want companionship.

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