Saturday, February 19, 2011
Who looks for a soul mate? Anyone who looks to astrological advice, takes magazine quizzes to measure their current or potential boyfriend for soul mate-ness or even goes out on a date is looking for a soul mate. Most of us won’t admit it for fear of being ridiculed. The idea of a soul mate is hard wired into American culture. Most dating services use the premise of finding a soul mate so it equates people do want to find theirs.
The idea of a soul mate surprisingly comes most recently from the Victorian period. People normally married for financial or practical reasons. The bride might marry to bring her family’s standing up either financially or socially. The concept of marrying for love wasn’t really popularized until Queen Victoria married her beloved Albert. The idea shocked the general public, but the adoration and support the staid queen displayed for her husband excited general views on marriage. While Queen Victoria could never been compared to literary lovelorn heroines, she was open in her love for Albert often referring to him as her soul mate. The real question is what is a soul mate?
The original Greek myth had the soul mate being a two faced creature with four legs and arms plus a great deal of power. This creature consisted of two souls, but inhabited one body. All emotional needs for love and devotion were met within the creature. There was no reason for it to look to the gods for guidance or worship. This angered the jealous gods who tore the creature asunder and threw the halves to separate ends of the Earth. In the movie, The Butcher’s Wife, Demi Moore’s character explains this story and how the creatures must spend the rest of their lives asking everyone if they were their soul mates since once separated they could not recognize one another. Another version is that the creatures are dogs that’s why they are constantly sniffing each other’s butts to see if the other dog is their soul mate. Supposedly that was where they were connected. Not the most romantic version of the concept. I am sure that isn’t the version Queen Victoria wasn’t thinking of when she referred to Albert as her soul mate.
The dictionary defines soul mate has having a natural affinity for the other both intellectually, physical and sexually. Of course, there is great love for each other across every area of the spectrum. According to online respondents when posed with the question of the reality of soul mates existing their answers differed. Some women believed that a real soul mate ultimately knows what the other needs or is thinking without any words being exchanged. This explains why women get miffed when their significant other doesn’t have a clue what’s wrong. Men aren’t much better in their expectations often they expect their soul mate to fulfill their fantasies without being told exactly what they are. Expectations are high for a soul mate. The first requirement must be clairvoyance.
Can a soul mate actually be found when this one person is supposed to meet all your needs? Is there only one person who is your soul mate? The Victorian concept insisted there was just one. That has led many men and women to engage in a lifelong search for that one elusive person often rejecting people who might have enriched their lives. Often people will despair if they believe they have somehow missed their soul mate due to death, sickness or location. The soul mate concept is also used to rationalize bad behavior. A man or woman who walks out on their current family to chase after their soul mate is only using it as a weak excuse. Finding your soul mate gets even more tricky if you believe your soul mate might be reincarnated. Suddenly you are wondering if both men, women, children, even poodles might be your soul mate.
Can you ever actually find a soul mate? That depends. If you are looking for a psychic friend who can read your mind and is able to deliver on all your desire ASAP, then I hate to burst your bubble, but you will be disappointed. I do know couples that fit together very well and I guess they would define my expectations of what a soul mate is since they respect, love and support each other. The other major factor is they enjoy being with each other. Sure they can function on their own, but together they are stronger. Kinda harkens backs to the original soul mate creature who so angered the gods with its strength and self love.
It brings back to my mind the concept of a good relationship is one that helps you be your best self. It is certainly better than the alternative. So how do you find this soul mate? Now if I knew this would I be writing this blog? But I have some ideas. I think if you’re open to all sorts of a different people you might run across those you could be compatible with as in more than one. The big job now is deciding which reasonably compatible person would be the best match. Who would you want to spend the rest of your life with? After all that is one of the requirements of soul mates is to spend the rest of our lives together.
Do you believe in soul mates? Tell me why?