Seeing Your Soul

What does it actually mean to have a soul?

Rabbi Aron Moss,

Judaism לבן ריק
לבן ריק
Arutz 7
Can you tell me in simple terms what a soul is? What does it actually mean to have a soul? And how do we know we have one?

Have you ever met identical twins? There's something amazing about them. Not only do they look alike, they both have exactly the same genetic makeup, they share the same birthday, grew up in the same family with the same parents, and had almost the same experiences. And yet, they are not the same. They are each individuals, with different personalities, abilities and character.

But why? What makes them different? In both nature and nurture they are the same. While of course they didn't have exactly the same experiences, their lives are usually similar enough. And yet they are different people.
Your soul is your essence, the you behind everything else.
Parents of twins report seeing clear differences in their children from birth or soon after. And friends of one twin may not find much in common with the other. Why?

The answer is: the soul. They each have a soul and every soul is completely unique. No two souls are alike, and even two people with the same genes and the same family have different souls. And your soul is the true you, deeper than any other factor that makes up your persona, deeper than both nature and nurture.

Here we have a definition of "soul": the deepest layer of your identity that makes you unique. Your soul is your essence, the you behind everything else. It is your core, the raw material upon which all other layers of your identity are placed. Your soul remains beyond the reach of any external influence, including your parents, your upbringing, your surroundings and your experiences. It is the real you.

That's why no matter what you have gone through in your life, no matter what type of life you have led until now, you can decide today that you want to change for the better, and you can do it. Because you have a soul that remains untouched by the outside world, and if you choose to live according to your soul rather than according to world opinion, nothing can stop you.

Your soul is yours, it is you, and it is free.