The word "soulmate" brings to mind mystical images of New Age gurus. If you have read books by American author Richard Bach, you may have an idea of what a soulmate is. According to Bach, and many others before him, a soulmate is a twin soul, somebody who has an affinity in love and friendship that goes beyond superficial compatibility. In fact, a soulmate does not necessarily shares the same taste in music and clothing or even agrees with your lifestyle, but he or she has something that complements you and makes you feel complete.
The concept of a soulmate is nothing new. In his "Symposium," Plato refers to a soulmate by using the analogy of humans who originally had four legs and arms, until the Greek God Zeus split them in half and scatter them around the world. Since then, people have always been looking for their other half, in an attempt to become a full person again.
The New Age concept of a soulmate is somewhat similar to Plato's idea, except that the theory goes a step further, implying that a soulmate has probably shared your life before. The concept of reincarnation is closely related to the explanation of why a soulmate feels "familiar" to you from the first time you see him or her, even though you have never met the person before.
The expression "my better half" has a deep meaning in the soulmate theory. Your better half is not only the person who shares your life, but also the person who makes you complete. A soulmate, on that basis, can be somebody who has the characteristics that you lack. Once you are together, you complement each other perfectly.
The concept of a soulmate has been explored widely in films. A recent example is the movie Serendipity, where Kate Beckinsale and John Cusack keep "almost" meeting throughout the whole film, because they are so closely connected to each other that their lives cross in mysterious ways. By the end of the film. the characters finally realize that they are soulmates, and make a final decision that brings them together.