Self and Soul


I have always firmly believed that there are two parts to a human being: the shell and the soul.

When a person dies, we often hear the phrase, “Here one moment, gone the next.”

But people don’t really leave when they die. Because, I also firmly believe, that the human shell is, in fact, not just a shell at all.

The shell has a mind of it’s own. A life of it’s own. A persona of it’s own creation. That of which battles with the soul until the soul must depart, like they so often do.

This I think, and this I have thought. And, I swear, every fiber of my being prays to whatever higher power may exist that I am not the only one who understands this... phenomenon.

It is as if my soul and shell are at war. Like there isn’t just one me, but two who have no choice but to share the same body. As if my flesh and bone is just a home to the parasite that is my self.

Many times I’ve contemplated what my self is. What is a self at all? How can one have a sense of self if there was never any self to sense? What defines a self?

I’ve come to no conclusion, and found no answer. But I do know that whoever my self is, it is my soul. Not my shell. Not that old, false beast. Never. If I were to describe my self, I would most certainly describe my soul. And it is my soul that you see now, through my writing.

Oh God, but that hideous shell! Overbearing, outright, blunt, sporadic. I can’t contain it! It does what it wishes, says what it pleases, acts how it dares! My poor soul has no chance at winning the battle of being seen. To all who know me, they now not my soul. Only that horrid, pathetic shell. Only who they see when we are face-to-face.

How I so often wish my soul could be dominant. God, the times I’ve longed to let my soul take control.

But then I’m left thinking.

If I hate my shell so, then how does it prevail? And if my shell is all that my comrades see externally, then does my soul even really exist? 

To be able to comment and rate this poem, you must be registered. Register here or if you are already registered, login here.