Sometimes I laugh when I see pseudo-new-aged articles calling for us to ‘find’ our soul mates. As one writer points out, we spend endless hours wishing for, praying for, begging for our soul mates – that person who will finally make all the suffering worth it. But I’m here to tell you a little secret. You don’t find a soul mate. There is no such thing. This is because every single person is your soul mate. You are part of a whole ‘organism’ for lack of a better word. Like a cell among billions that make up a body. You can give up the search for a soul mate. Let me explain.

Yogi Bhajan, the man who single-handedly introduced Kundalini yoga to the United States once said,

“This is the most funny, most idiotic, most insane thing I have heard: “Oh, I am an old soul, he’s an old soul, he’s my soul mate.” And they screw each other. Can you believe this soul-mate business? Souls have started screwing. God bless America, this great country! When I heard that, I said, “Wow, we’ve had it.” “This is my soul mate. I want to marry her.” Souls marry? Souls don’t marry. They don’t. Really, they don’t. Souls don’t marry, and souls don’t mate. Souls have no mate. Everything is a soul mate. The entire existence is one soul, as there is one sun and there are a million rays. That’s how it all is.”

What really happens when you finally find your “soul mate”? You didn’t just somehow stumble on the one person who could understand you, love you, accept all your shortcomings, and blow fire on your ego, telling you how beautiful, handsome, smart, fabulous, creative, talented, loving, (insert additional accolades) you are. What happened is that your consciousness finally developed enough that you could recognize another part of the whole of YOU. YOU as a part, just as the perceived ‘other’ of the Universal, Infinite whole.

Call it working through your karma, or ‘deserving love,’ give it whatever name you like, but really you just accepted a bigger part of the Infinite as your ‘self.’

Does one drop of water finally find another drop of water on the other side of the ocean and declare, “It’s you, I’ve found you! Now the loving can begin!” No, the drops of water were forever swishing around in the deep and vast ocean, each important to the making of the ocean, but none more or less important or ‘special’ than the next. Each drop is precious. Without every single drop that ocean would dry up, but really those drops aren’t even there. The ocean is.

What happened when you finally ‘found’ that one person who you can love and talk to so easily, is that you accepted the broken, hurt, shamed, guilty, easily angered, frustrated, belittled parts of yourself fully. You also accepted your strengths, and stopped apologizing for them. By forgiving yourself and loving yourself as the Divine that you truly are, you made way for the experience of ‘another’ that could reflect this greater, more expanded love that you developed in your own character.

These divisions are unreal though. There is no ‘him’. There is no ‘her’. There is no you and me, even. The brain hallucinates the experience of the ‘other’ so that we can somehow cope with our tiny intellects — the vastness of the multi-verse. We like to be social creatures – we like to have conversations about ‘finding our soul mates,’ or ‘finding that one special friend,’ but truly, as Guru Singh suggests,

We refer to this world as the “grand-other” — that which appears to be other than self. We have done a great deal to try to differentiate this world from ours, all under the assumption that it exists separately from the self.

But what if we were to discover that this “grand-other” isn’t really out there? It is not actually separate from you and we seem to have simply lost our ability to see our unity, the absolute connection.

Maybe a greater part of life’s purpose is to break this illusion.

Would this empower you? Being able to see beyond this illusion, would it answer your questions?”

The only ‘soul mate’ you really have is you, or more specifically your perception.

Our yearning for a soul mate is really just our yearning to be whole. But the self-importance, the egotism, that underlies most of our exchanges with the world is mostly illusory, an emotional state that narrows our awareness and makes it nearly impossible to experience anything real or new about ourselves. As we continue to search for an ‘other’ to fill that void, we emotionally show what is at stake—our own sense of self, another illusion the ego uses to keep us from experiencing our Oneness. There is not really any It, I, Them, You, Her, Him, etc. so there is nothing to find.

“We are here to awaken from our illusion of separateness.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

Still looking for the perfect lover? Your soul mate? Guess what, they are already with you. When you ‘find’ them it feels amazing. Why? Because ‘they’ ARE you.

Image credit: Life Hack