Previous entries in the Soul Mates and the HEA Real or Fantasy series are indexed here:
Romance genre focuses on the moment two people meet with the CHIME of True Love echoing from the collision.
Like the music of the spheres, that CHIME is "audible" to the Soul, but not so much to the ears (usually).
Combining with a Soul Mate often, but not always, leads to the Happily Ever After point in life. It is not an "ending" but a new beginning, setting sail on calm seas, knowing there will be storms tossing life into new courses, perhaps running aground.
The "life course" that the new couple embarks on reflects the progress of the joining, combining, uniting, the fertile Mating of these two Souls.
It is often confusing, bewildering, even enraging and embittering, to experience the abrasive polishing of your Soul by another.
One reason everyday people live through marriage with volcanic emotional eruptions, alternately loving and hating their Soul Mate is the lack of a THEORY of what a Soul is.
Theory of what the universe is, what reality is, what human society is, is for, is right or wrong, generates the underlying, envelope THEME of a novel.
Any given writer may produce novels on several (often mutually exclusive) theories of reality, of what love is, what hate is, where it comes from, how it affects the course of decisions and consequent events.
Picking a theory, and generating a theme, is the foundation of Worldbuilding.
Most often, the choices are not conscious - as the writer just sits down and records the story the Characters tell her.
The act of writing, though, often creates a consuming interest in a new theory, generating new, divergent themes that just have to be written about because new Characters start shouting their stories into the writer's ear.
Writing begets writing. That's why the advice to beginners, and those who are just suddenly stuck staring at a blank page, is simply WRITE. Just write something - you can change it later.
We have often touched on the fertile source of theories and themes we find in everyday headlines. We rip stories from the Headlines and run with them into new worlds, alternate realities, or historical epochs.
We started to collect some real world headlines to rip Romance stories from:
And here is an index to posts about using real world headlines:
There is another, major, source used by writers such as Ursula LeGuinn, Andre Norton, and many others who are my favorite authors -- Ancient Mythology, Great Philosophers (Aristotle, etc), Ancient and Modern Religions.
All the, "How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?" thinkers and writers fascinate me. I, however, have more of a physics-math-chemistry style of thinking, so I use tools such as Astrology and Tarot, searching for (and mostly finding) solid links between that thinking and Biblical thought.
Chabad.org is my current favorite source of well organized, and thus usable, worldbuilding concepts.
So, when it comes to Romance between Soul Mates, here is where I find the most lucid and readily applicable description of the mechanism of love, mating, and living life.
Why do we fumble through so much pain?
Develop a theoretical answer to that question and you will generate themes galore.
We look at Souls as a single THING -- a component of our selves.
Maybe that view needs refinement, just as we have had to refine our view of the atom. Remember the Ancient Greeks coined the word Atom to mean the smallest INDIVISIBLE particle of matter. Turns out there is no such thing. We split the atom (with explosive consequences), and went on to dissect the particles the atom flew apart into.
All particles come apart. But they have an organizing structure.
If this is true of the components of solid matter, perhaps it is also true of Souls.
I've noted many times that I learned in a class, years ago, that the Soul enters manifestation through the dimension of time.
This explains why we can't measure it with instruments made of matter. It has no dimensions -- no height, width, length, weight. It has DURATION, and is manifest, but the Soul has no physical properties.
Now, here below is a link to an article which explains one of the oldest notions of how Souls are structured, and it seems to me the structure echoes the structure of matter as we have now discovered it to be.
We start thinking the Soul is a single, indivisible, component of our Self.
But when we meet a Soul Mate, we find internal parts of our Soul jostling for attention, for prominence, to lead the process of fusion. Other parts may shrink from anticipated pain. Simple animal lust of the animal soul that energizes the physical body may overwhelm all the nuanced emotions of the inner components of the complicated Soul. Every aspect of Identity is disturbed.
How do we explain loving someone so much you hate them?
If you use a theory of reality that views Souls as complicated, existing on different levels, and each level performing a different function, fusing into Relationship with the Mate's (also complex) Soul, suddenly you can explain the bewildering confusion of "falling in love."
So here is one theory you can use to generate themes upon which to build worlds in which Characters wrench, twist, and scrub their way into Relationships that redirect the course of human (and non-human) history.
This web page delineates the characteristics and functions of the souls termed Nefesh, Ruach, Neshama, Chaya, and Yechida.
What does it take to reach the other side of Romance where the Happily Ever After Ending is only the beginning of ever more intense levels of joy, satisfaction, revelation?
Watch the Headlines of your favorite news outlet and try to see the people, events, deeds, decisions, and consequences in terms of the interactions of the multiplex components of Souls -- internal conflicts playing out externally where you can see them.
Find a theory of the HEA, how it starts, how it functions, what sustains it, and what it takes to get there all depicted graphically in the explosive headlines of this year.