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  • Writer's pictureReflective Resources

K is for Kindred Spirits

“A bosom friend—an intimate friend, you know—a really kindred spirit to whom I can confide my inmost soul. I’ve dreamed of meeting her all my life. I never really supposed I would, but so many of my loveliest dreams have come true all at once that perhaps this one will, too. Do you think it’s possible?” Anne Shirley to Marilla ( Anne of Green Gables - L.M. Montgomery)

What is a kindred spirit?

The term Kindred spirit comes from the combination of two 13th century words – kindred and spirit. The word ‘kindred’ evolved from the word ‘kinraden’ ( Old English), which itself came from the word ‘raeden’, meaning to ‘rule.’ It generally refers to those family or relatives related by blood or marriage having similar or common qualities, origin, etc.

Spirit by contrast comes from the (Old French) word, ‘esprit’. It has many meanings, including ‘breath’, ‘courage’, ‘soul’ and ‘vigour’.

The terms were combined to form ‘kindred spirit’ and the sense has been expanded and used in various cultures to describe close friends and lovers as well as family.

“Kindred spirits are not so scarce as I used to think. It's splendid to find out there are so many of them in the world.” L.M. Montgomery

Is a kindred spirit the same as a soulmate?

“You bypass hundreds of people and never really click,

then you pass just one and everything changes.

Life is magical like that, whether you share a lifetime or just a mere second..

those souls come to awaken the core.

They are kindred angels disguised as humans without wings.”

Nikki Rowe

We just ‘click’ with some people when we meet them for the first time. We recognise something in them that naturally draws us to them and we feel that they ‘get us’ and are on our ‘wave length’ without us having to explain where we are ‘coming from’. These are the people that we describe as kindred spirits; those who exhibit similar tendencies or characteristics that we aspire to.

“Kindred spirit: Something in nature connects two kindred spirits like the two corners of a beautiful rainbow. Rain, sunset or a butterfly one can never know how two kindred souls can be connected even before their paths cross.” Purba Chakraborty

We often make a connection because of similar experiences, interests and values and the metaphor ‘birds of a feather’ can be applied. Kindred spirits are people who resonate at the same frequency as us. We can meet such people under all sorts of circumstances and they stay for differing amounts of time as we adapt, change and grow. The kindred spirits we meet do not necessarily stay by our side for ever, they can be briefly intertwined in our lives and then naturally move on but the interaction we make with them often leaves a lasting sense of connection.

“Soul mates recognize one another’s vibration. They instantly fuse to the life force that surrounds their core of being.” Truth Devour

Soulmates, by contrast, are often described as two separate souls that are linked and are generally a more constant, ongoing presence in our lives. A soul mate does not need to share common interests in fact they can be very different from us in that aspect (opposites attract) but they do tend to share similar core values and we are able to connect at a deep level with them and their presence often leads to growth.

The benefits of finding kindred spirits

“I also draw strength from so many people that I meet through my speaking engagements and my life and when I feel the joy that gets ignited when kindred spirits are together. It gives me such hope that each one of us can contribute to make this world a better place.”

Agapi Stassinopoulos

When kindred spirits join together, as well as giving us a sign of hope, there is power when people are so attuned and united instinctively towards a common purpose and can ‘second guess’ where the direction of a project or activity or conversation is going.

Kindred spirits often share the same humour, idiosyncrasies and values and tend to get each other in ways that others simply do not.

“It's happened to me, and it's probably happened to you. From the first exchange of good mornings they had recognized in each other a kindred soul. Though neither spoke much to start with, they felt an immediate ease in each other's company that was both surprising and yet the most natural thing in the world.” Nicholas Drayson

Having a kindred spirit in our circle helps us to accept ourselves.

“I found that it wasn’t so oddball to like music and poetry and visual arts, they’re kindred spirits.” J. Carter Brown

We can feel more at peace with our idiosyncrasies knowing that there are others like us too and it offers us a sense of comfort.

“There’s something beautiful about finding one’s innermost thoughts in another.”

Oliver Schreiner

We can often become more relaxed because we feel that others understand us and we are not alone. Kindred spirits can reignite our energy and remind us of our own potential and who we are. They can act like a mirror and reflect ourselves back or proactively act as an encourager as they are attuned with our aims/goals etc

“He was like me – a kindred spirit crazy enough to keep on trying.” Octavia Butler

Kindred spirits can act as a great support system for us because they understand us and can often intuitively recognise our weaknesses and strengths, sometimes even before we do.

Whether we like it or not we are all connected. Kindred spirits have a special connection as they can sometimes feel like extensions of ourselves and show us different facets of ourselves

“Maybe the two different worlds we lived in weren’t so different. We saw the same sunset.” The Outsiders

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