This is the day. The day America’s couples celebrate love and happiness. It’s the day that forgetful men rush to buy flowers and greeting cards for their wives, fiances and girlfriends.
Among those celebrating Valentine’s Day, it is not uncommon to hear people refer to their significant other as their “soulmate.” It is a concept that has been bandied about in the Western world for millennia. Since the time of the Greeks who invented it, the idea that one person is for all has been popular.
But do soulmates exist? Are soulmates really possible?
It’s a question I’ve been chewing on since my relationship with my future bride began last year. Because I’m a nerd, I looked into it and found out the opinions of others.
Before I get into my analysis of this question, let’s answer another vital question: What the heck is a “soulmate?”
The term is not defined in any way. Different people may view it differently.
Merriam-Webster defines this term as follows:
[A]Person who perfectly suits another person’s temperament
[A]Person who is strongly similar to another person in attitude or belief
Some people suggest that you find a soulmate when someone complements your personality almost completely. This is someone who shares a special bond with you. Some believe that the soulmate will be the person God intended you to share a special bond with. Many believe one can have many potential soulmates.
Family and marital psychologist Dr. Michael Tobin told Brides.com, a website I never expected to visit, that a soulmate is “the realization that this person who shares your life is a part of yourself.” He continued:
“A soulmate is an individual that has a lasting impact on your life. Your soulmate is your fellow traveler on the journey of life—you need one another to grow beyond the limitations of your individual selves.”
Brides.com identifies several indications that someone has found their soulmate. “Intense feelings,” “[t]ranscendence of time and place,” and “immediate connection” are all signifiers that one may have found “the one.”
Ancient Greeks believed that humans had been shaped differently when they first appeared. This is how the soulmate idea was born. Both male and female were born with four arms, four legs and one head that had two faces.
In Plato’s philosophical text, “The Symposium,”He has Aristophanes as his character, a Greek theatre and comedian, telling the tale of the creation soulmates. His explanation is that the humans had grown too large and they were threatening to overthrow Gods. Zeus divided them in two, creating the conditions where humans sought their opposite halves and lived their lives to fulfill them.
Although the idea was originally created as a joke and involves mythical deities it is now a popular belief among Christians. How many times have you heard pastors, preachers, or other Christian spiritual leaders suggest that we should be praying that God sends us “the right one?” The idea that God created us to be with one specific person has become ubiquitous in the world of Christianity despite having no biblical basis.
Nevertheless, it is still a compelling concept, isn’t it?
Many people find the idea of finding the one true love that will bring us together appealing and charming. The feeling of having an instant connection with someone can be wonderful. It can make you feel higher than Hunter Biden’s favorite narcotic. You have finally met the person that just “gets you.” This person must be “the one” because you just connect on such a deep level, right? It had to be a match made in Heaven.
Is it really true?
For my part, it is difficult for me to believe in this definition of “soulmate.” The notion that there is just one person out there that God created just for us seems numerically impossible given the makeup of the world’s population. This concept is also not supported by Scripture, which makes it even harder for me to accept.
In his book, “Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage,” pastor Mark Gungor explains that entering into a successful marital relationship isn’t about finding the one person that was created for you. He wrote:
The truth is, a successful marriage is not the result of marrying the “right” person, feeling the “right” emotions, thinking the “right” thoughts, or even praying the “right” prayers. It’s about doing the “right” things—period. Why doesn’t God have a special person just for you? Because He knows that His principles of love, acceptance, patience, and forgiveness work, and they work all the time, every time—no matter to whom you are married. That is why the apostle Paul never told us to find that “special someone,” but rather to make sure we find someone who truly believes and lives by the principles of love, acceptance, patience, and forgiveness. He referred to such a person as a “believer.”
Gungor also notes that “[m]arriage is more about work than about divine luck, more about finding someone to love than about finding someone to meet your own laundry list of personal needs.”
This mirrors my beliefs about the concept. Yes, God is real to me. Can DoesBring people together. In my relationship, I believe He gave a “nudging.” But the bottom line is that I chose her, and she chose me. We could have easily decided to choose someone else, but we didn’t. We made the right decision. Ours.
While soulmates may sound like a good idea, they can lead to faulty thinking. Some people may be inclined to believe that their marriage is not right because it has hit a difficult patch. This belief is responsible for many broken marriages.
Actually, my girlfriend and I feel that deep connection others refer to. The spiritual side of our relationship is mutual. There is all that romantic, sweet, loving, tender stuff those lovey-dovey couples claim they have. More than this, however, we chose to love each others. We know that our relationship will be strong and will continue to endure the years if Gungor’s biblical guidance is followed.
Perhaps instead of focusing on finding that “one person,” we would be wise to work on developing the attributes and habits prescribed in the Bible so that when we do meet someone with whom we might be compatible, we can not only make sure we Choose We can ensure that we’re with the right person. beingThe right person. It’s a lesson she and I have both had to learn separately, and we are now enjoying the process of learning together. In the end, the truth is that she and I are each other’s soulmates, not because we were created to be, but because we deliberately chose to be.