When we think of “soul mate”, we think of the “One Person” we need/want to complete us. Our “other half”. Having this person in our lives gives everything, mostly ourselves, meaning.

Soul mate energy comes when we’ve known someone in previous lives and experienced that bond and unconditional love. We want to continue it in this life, especially if it was a full, satisfying journey. Other times, we desperately want to connect with someone we’ve loved from another life when that life was incomplete, as in a great relationship existed but was cut short by death or forced separation.

Nothing about the soul-mate journey is cut-and-dried simple. It is as varied and complex as everything else in life. Soul mates can bring the complete bond that allows a couple to work for the good of humanity. It can bring the reuniting of souls who were separated by death or force. It can also bring the mirror for each other to encourage completeness within self.

In the Aquarian Age transition, many older souls are being brought together, not because of personal need, but because we connect on the soul level. Our unconditional love, and the feeling of having each other’s backs, gives strength to our work to help humanity grow and learn. We don’t need to do heavy relationship work. We finished that in previous lives. But our bond from then, and the satisfaction of being together now, helps us spread that love and understanding beyond just the two of us.

Others who are still trying to find self have a desperate need for a soul mate, someone who will accept and love us for exactly who we are. But without accepting and loving self first, the person we call to us is, instead, going to show us what we need to do to face ourselves. That is, we want someone to accept us when we don’t accept ourselves because we don’t want, or know how, to do the inner work.

There are other times when we meet and immediately connect with someone who rings all the bells and awakens our hearts but ends up being transitory. The emotions and connections are there as if we’ve known that person forever (because we’ve had multiple past-life relationships together). The frustration of finding someone who feels like the “One” but isn’t the “One Who Stays” can lead to blame, anger, and shutting down our hearts when it doesn’t last. But only because we don’t know what’s going on. This “taste of bonding” can be maddening, yet there is an explanation for why such encounters come up.

Sometimes when a love was important to us in past life, we want to know that person is okay. This encounter is a “check in” to see how the other is doing. The path of being together in a full-blown relationship is not the purpose of the encounter. It’s hard to tell the difference between that and the connection that leads to a full-blown relationship if we’re not aware of this version of soul mates.

These days of self-awareness and awakening in the New Age can make us feel quite separate and alone. Finding someone from a past life is like meeting your closest friend from grade school when you’re in your thirties. Both are already established with family and life-trajectory, but it sure is nice to see them again and make sure they’re okay (except the emotions and bond are so much deeper with soul-mate check-ins). The trick is being able to tell the difference and accept what comes for what it is, not what it “should” be or what we want it to be to complete ourselves.

A friend and client, Kat, recently had an experience that better explains the “check-in” version of soul mates (I write this with her permission). She was traveling by herself in Europe on a much-deserved and needed extended vacation. She just completed an on-again-off-again long-term relationship with a man back home in the States. Their karmic contract of love and devotion to each other had shifted when he hadn’t faced his personal lessons and became lost in ego. That negated the romantic love/bond contract for this life as their purpose together shifted (his choice of focusing on self was at her expense). Further work between them will be done in future lives once he faces himself and they become more equal in vibrations. Being on her own in Europe helped her get back to herself.

She’d been staying in a small town in Spain on the Mediterranean coast when she went with new friends to a bar that had live music. When she locked eyes with one of the musicians, she felt a surge of energy and emotion like nothing she’d experienced before. A “struck by lightning” moment. There was a connection between them as if they’d been madly in love all their lives, been separated and had just found each other. The emotions overtook her. And she could see and feel in him – in his eyes, expression and energy – that he had the same experience.

When the set ended, he came directly over to her and started talking as if they were continuing a conversation they’d left just an hour before. The heat between them (energetic and sexual) was extreme. When the waitress came to get their order, she asked if they were in love. They had only met ten minutes before. He told the waitress, “She was my wife in another life.” Past lives hadn’t been discussed between them in those ten minutes and yet the bond was strongly recognized for both of them.

He was not native to Spain but came from South America and was traveling with his band. She was born and lived in the States yet they both were in this small town at the same time, as if it was destiny.

As she was relating this encounter to me, I got immediate hits of their last life together being in Spain during the Napoleonic War in the early 1800s. They were lovers and warriors together during a time when both men and women were guerrilla fighters for their country against the invading French. The intensity of battle and war brought their love to a level above anything that could be achieve in peace-time. They literally had each other’s backs in that life with the fierce thrill and fear of war with them for many significant years.

This window into a past life resonated with her. She told me they spent a lot of time together that night and she saw him again the next evening before she was leaving the following day. While she was able to recognize the connection and allow it to exist as if in a bubble, she (and he) also knew neither of them were the “One Who Stays” and both were able to appreciate it all the more.

If she had assigned the intensity of their connection and recognition as the beginning of a long-term relationship, her trip would have been ruined in changing plans and expecting him to change plans to force it to work. But she was able to take it for what it was, a “check-in”, so it became a gift rather than a curse. While they stayed in loose contact as they traveled, that bond – and the recognition of each other – will never fade. But it didn’t need to be any more than what it was over those two days.

Not everyone can acknowledge a recognition in such an encounter because we’ve shut down – or were never taught or allowed to understand – past life awareness. If we’re in a solid relationship and encounter this kind of check-in, it can seem to threaten what we already have, if we don’t know to see it for what it is. It isn’t permission to break vows, but it is permission to acknowledge.

I hope this can make sense of some of the encounters we have – I’m sure we’ve all had connections like this at some point in our lives. I had a memorable one several years ago with a guy working at my neighborhood UPS store when living in Los Angeles. He was at least 15 years my junior, covered in tattoos and piercings and not at all what I’m sure either of us were looking for. But we flirted shamelessly every time I was in the store. I knew what it was so didn’t question it’s deep meaning or need to look into how we’d known each other in past lives. That wasn’t the point. I just enjoyed it for what it was. He was okay, I was okay, maybe we’d meet again in another life.

Here’s wishing you the best of soul-mate “check-ins” – and seeing them for what they are – as we shift and grow in the new energy.

I offer this with love and gratitude…

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