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Can a convert be my soul-mate?

Can a convert be my soul-mate?

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Question:

My girlfriend isn't Jewish, but she is in the process of converting.

In your Kabbalah class you said that everyone has a soul-mate, the missing part of our soul. Before we are born our souls are split in two, half is placed in a male child and the other half in a female, and we spend our lives searching for that one person that completes our soul.

I believe I have met my soul-mate.

Am I correct in saying that according to you, she can't be the other half of my soul (even after she converts) because I was born with a Jewish soul and she wasn't?

Don

Answer:

Good question Don.

While generally a Jew's soul-mates also born Jewish, there are rare exceptions -- it could also be a convert. Because there's more to a convert to Judaism than meets the eye.

The Kabbalah teaches that a true convert actually always had a latent Jewish soul, which for some cosmic reason had to go through a long spiritual journey in order to find its way back. This is one reason why the conversion process is made to be difficult: we are really just testing to see if this person indeed has a Jewish spark; if they do, then no obstacle in the world will be able to stop them rejoining their people.

So it is certainly possible that your girlfriend is your other half. But there's only one way to find out for sure. If she has been exposed to authentic Judaism, and became attracted to it to the point where she truly and sincerely wants to become Jewish, and is determined to do whatever it takes to get there, then she has a Jewish spark that could be the other half of your soul. And if she feels it's not for her, then you both will have been saved from marrying the wrong person.


There was quite a response to this ask the Rabbi. Below are two examples.

Michael:

I found your last email offensive. You are essentially saying that only Jews have souls and if a non-Jew wants a soul they have to convert!

Rabbi Moss:

I apologize if you were offended, but that is not at all what I wrote. A non-Jew most certainly has a soul. But not a Jewish soul. We have different souls because we have different missions. A true convert had a latent Jewish soul all along, and his/her destiny was always to be a part of the Jewish people. But this in no way means that a non-Jew doesn't have a soul.

Natalie:

If a male dies at an early age, does that mean his soul did not "split" into male and female, or is there a female somewhere out there who will never find her other half?

Rabbi Moss:

In a case where someone dies young (G‑d forbid), there are a few possible explanations as to what happened to their soulmate: 1) their soulmate also passed away, 2) they met their soul-mate already in a previous life and only came back to finish a specific mission, which had been accomplished or 3) their soulmate married someone else, and they will meet up in their next reincarnation. Whatever the case, everyone will eventually reunite with their true soulmate.

Aron Moss is rabbi of the Nefesh Community in Sydney, Australia, and is a frequent contributor to Chabad.org.
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Elisheva Indonesia June 18, 2017

Rabbi Aron Moss wrote:

"In a case where someone dies young (G‑d forbid), there are a few possible explanations as to what happened to their soulmate: 1) their soulmate also passed away, 2) they met their soul-mate already in a previous life and only came back to finish a specific mission, which had been accomplished or 3) their soulmate married someone else, and they will meet up in their next reincarnation. Whatever the case, everyone will eventually reunite with their true soulmate."

Regarding number 3: So in the time of Moshiach, a Jewish convert will always be alone since they don't have a "true soulmate" that they can reunite with eventually? Reply

Simcha Bart for Chabad.org June 19, 2017
in response to Elisheva:

I believe Rabbi Moss was quite clear in saying that a convert can be the soulmate of a Jew from birth because the convert has a latent Jewish soul. Here is what he wrote:

"If she has been exposed to authentic Judaism, and became attracted to it to the point where she truly and sincerely wants to become Jewish, and is determined to do whatever it takes to get there, then she has a Jewish spark that could be the other half of your soul."

I hope this clarifies the matter. Reply

Simcha Bart for Chabad.org February 12, 2017

There is no reason to think that because you have been alone for many years that you have lost the opportunity to meet your soulmate. Additionally, sometimes we don't marry our soulmate, but we can still marry someone who is the closest soul to our soul. For more on soulmates please see here our section devoted to this topic. Reply

Toby Austin January 31, 2017

I am also divorced. I've been alone for decades now. Does that mean I will spend eternity without a soul mate?

Please rabbi. There are many of us out here. I am now elderly but I would still like to connect with my bashert. Reply

Shoshana Leibowitz Austin December 26, 2013

Do I have a soumate? I was divorced and have not remarried. Do I have to marry someone?

Or am I doomed to spend eternity without a soul mate? Reply

Anonymous March 8, 2013

Beth, If you want to truly learn kabbalah, you have to follow the discipline, system and order of learning it properly with a tzaddik.

Yael: a second conversion is more of a clarification of intent, like with Ruth. Just go for it. If it did not work out you would have to go to them for the get, so it is in your best interest and his to just go for it. Also if you go to Israel it would make things easier for your kids. They are protecting you. Reply

Anonymous February 21, 2013

To Beth Yes. The basis for sprituality is love. I was disagreeing with you when you said that Kabbalah knows no religion, or something to that extent. Kabbalah is based on a fundamental understanding of Torah and Talmud. If one studies Kabbalah without that base, one is missing out on the fundamentals. It is like studying calculus without first studying algebra - it can be done, but a lot is lost.

Love happens between any two people. The world's amazing that way. When children come, love as well as religion and culture get passed down. Is it an expression of G-d's love that my cousins know little of our family's religion and their children know nothing? Yet, I know that my cousins' mother, my aunt, profoundly loves her husband. Yet something got lost too. True love between two people is an expression of G-d's love, but I don't know if the loss of a culture or religion expresses G-d's love. It is so complicated. Reply

Beth San Diego February 21, 2013

Dear Anonymous Thank you for your reply. To me - the basis of life and spirituality is through a loving God. My God is loving, My God knows no color, religion, sexual preference, My God loves me and my boyfriend for who we are not what we study. I am grateful for the Kabbalah that I study and have come to know and love. I am grateful for a loving God in my life. I am very sorry for those of you who do not know a loving accepting God. Reply

Anonymous NY February 19, 2013

Dear Beth As I am replying to something you wrote over two years ago, you might read this. However, I'd like to reply to your post. Kabbalah is not for people of all walks of life. That might be what you were taught, but you were not taught correctly. Not all people who teach Kabbalah necessarily teach it correctly. Kabbalah is meant for people who have an understanding of Torah and Talmud - a solid foundation. So yes, anyone can study Kabbalah, but it is not meant for just anyone to study. Without a solid background in the Torah, then you are missing the fundamentals upon which the Kabbalah is based. For thousands of years, Kabbalah was only taught to men over the age of 40 - because who else would have such a solid understanding of the Torah, as a base upon which to study Kabbalah? So no, it is not meant for anybody to study. But Kabbalah is certainly marketed that way. Reply

Anonymous Midwest February 8, 2013

Interesting subject/article! Controversial as well. As a practicing Noahide who continually feels drawn to conversion I must say it is difficult for me to come to a definite conclusion about the differences in souls. At the end of the day though I tend to agree with Beth. What first attracted me to Judaism was Kabbalah. I learned that everything has a spark of G-d, plants, animals and of course all human beings, Jews and non-Jews alike. The differences were external in terms of their ability to reveal this inner spark of G-dliness. For example, a flower can reveal Hashem's attributes of "Beauty" and "Wisdom" but these are revealed even more when I study the Sheva Mitzvos... The Jewish people are the ultimate revealers of divinity because they have the Torah/613 mitzvos...but does that have to mean that there is something inately different about Jewish souls? Reply

Annoyed London, UK June 4, 2011

soul mates i hate the concept of a soulmate. it's impossible to find the exact right person, or to know it is him, or to know anything. like it's a joke and it's just depressing. because if thats true, what if i get it wrong? what if i marry the wrong person? or if he marries or gets involved with someone else before he meets me... Reply

Anonymous Alturas, CA March 26, 2011

There is no "Soul Mate" The concept of a "soul mate" is nothing more than a silly superstition. Good marriages exist because both partners make the marriage their top priority. Fate, even when dressed up with spiritual language, has nothing to do with it.

Unfortunately, too many people in the US have become wedded (no pun intended) to this superstition. They ignore excellent potential mates because excellent just isn't good enough for them. They are looking for the "perfect" mate that The Divine has supposedly intended for them. The fact is there are no perfect mates, because there are no perfect people. Reply

Yael NY February 28, 2011

Conversion I was 12 when I decided to convert to Judaism. My mother is half muslim and half catholic, practices neither of the religions. My father is Jewish. I consider myself a Jew, I feel Jewish, I know I am Jewish. But it is very difficult for other Jews to see me the same way. I am 28 now, found the love of my life, who also happens to be a Jew, however, his community (we are not from the same city) doesn't accept me as a Jew and want me to go through a whole different process of conversion in order to marry under traditional jewish laws. His way of handling is distancing himself from the people he's grown up with. In other words his remedy is to stop being a practicing Jew. I don't agree with it, as it goes against my principles and everything I stand for. Reply

Beth San Diego, CA June 29, 2010

True Kabbalism I'm offended as well. True Kabbalah knows no religion. It is what all spirituality and religions have stemmed off of. While it is Jewish mysticism, it welcomes all religions. My boyfriend/soulmate is Jewish, and I am Kabbalist, with a Catholic upbringing (although I do not consider myself Catholic. I am truly offended not as though I'm being shunned, but that your understanding of Kabbalah is so against everything I have learned about Kabbalah. This is not an attack, but a concern. Reply

Racheli NY, NY November 19, 2009

Response to above That's not because you married a convert. That's because you thought to would be a good idea to go to his parents for Xmas... why were you comfortable with going? If you were ok with xmas, wouldn't you expect your kid to be, too? There are other ways to have a relationship with the in laws -- like visiting at times that aren't Xmas (or their other holidays!)

As for seeing the grandma eat milk and meat, you know, your child is going to see lots of other things that aren't normative (like in adverts, etc.). Or you could have just told your child the truth, like that "grandma isn't Jewish, but we are." I've spoken with children of baalei teshuvah who told me in hushed tones, "grandma doesn't keep kosher" but they still know what's right. You need to raise your own kids, not leave it to everyone else to educate your kids. Reply

Babushka November 18, 2009

Warning I married a convert.
It never occurred to me to look ahead.
My child with a grandma who had an Xmas tree.
My child witnessing his grandma eatng milchig and fleshig together.
My child exposed to Xmas carols in his own family.

Then we all got sick and my husband said,
No more going to his folks for Xmas!

And that was the year the child said,
Where's the Xmas tree?
And I finally realized my mistake.
I had to explain that we don't do Xmas.

On the plus side, we never quarrreled about whose house to go to for the Seder!!! Reply

Racheli NY, NY November 18, 2009

Response to Chaim How do you know she isn't sincere? What if her motivations had nothing to do with the boyfriend or the relationship?

Also on a sidenote, what if you say lashon hara about her and she is now Jewish, have you transgressed? Since what you said will be remembered and is here on this site for everyone to read? Reply

faigie January 22, 2009

Divorce and NO soul mate? Thank you for your enlightening article. My situation is slightly different from most converts as both my husband and I (and 2 of my children) started life as non-Jews and converted (out of convicton) after we had been married for 7 years.

My question is: Does the whole concept of a soul mate and the splitting of souls also apply to non-Jewish souls?

THE FACT that you both converted shows that you had Jewish souls all along and they just took a roundabout route to bring you back in body.

So yes, you and your spouse ARE soul mates!

And if both are some other religion, they too are soul mates.

But if my marriage lasted only 17 years (which felt like an eternity of torment) and then he gave me a divorce, am I alone? Have I yet to meet my bashert? What if I don't find him? Will I be alone in the World to Come? Reply

Natan Barch Ben Avraham Avinu Toronto, ON January 22, 2009

Converts and Soulmates "When a proselyte comes to be converted, one receives him with an open hand so as to bring him under the wings of the Divine Presence." (Leviticus Rabbah 2:9)

"Dearer to God than all of the Israelites who stood at Mount Sinai is the convert. Had the Israelites not witnessed the lightning, thunder, and quaking mountain, and had they not heard the sounds of the shofar, they would not have accepted the Torah. But the convert, who did not see or hear any of these things, surrendered to God and accepted the yoke of heaven. Can anyone be dearer to God than such a person?" Tanhuma (ed. Buber),
Lekh Lekha 6:32

"Beloved are proselytes by God, for the Bible everywhere uses the same epithet of them as of Israel" (Talmud, Gerim 4:3)

"Wherever you go, I will go. Wherever you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried"
- Ruth, the Moabite great-grandmother of King David & Convert to Judaism Reply

Edelhard July 6, 2008

AB, Michael, Frannie... A soul mate implies a marriage. Marriage implies children. If the mother is not a Jew, the children are not Jews and are not permitted to convert until they leave home, i.e., at age 18 or so. By that time the child is thoroughly confused about Gd and indifferent to the Jewish way of life. We have a responsibility to the future of the Jewish way of life. We provide the children who will live that life. We also have a responsibility for the souls of our children, who need the Jewish way of life. If parents have a Jewish home, they need to make that home loving and full of Jewish blessing so that the child will insist on such a home for him/herself rather than abandon his/her people and the Jewish way of life.

Frannie, if someone with a Jewish soul dies without marrying, it will have the opportunity to be born to a Jewish mother next time and then it won't have to convert. And then it can join its soul mate in that gilgul (cycle) [or use the word incarnation if you must] Reply

yamille Anaheim Hills, CA/USA via campsgi.com July 4, 2008

Hi! I'm in 6th grade and this is what I think. I once went to a wedding and the groom converted to a jew. So I think that if you love her deeply and are willing to have a life fulfilled with joy, GOOD!! But, ask her if she's serious about being a jew.Hope it works out!! Reply

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