The human soul is deep and mysterious, transcendent, personal, and distinct. It expresses the very best and worst of humanity, while also allowing us to connect deeply with God and each other. And while it’s endlessly creative, it itself is irreplaceable.
God breathed into us the breath of life and we became a living being. And bearing his image, we’re also creative in our own right. But our creativity doesn’t make us God. He has a nature all his own that’s irreplaceable, even though we reflect him in many ways.
The same is true with the work of our hands. For better or worse, while our spirit is reflected through our creative efforts, these efforts can never replace our very being.
For instance, we might flip through old photos or writings to remember the voice and way of being of a loved one after they’ve died. But this is not the same as connecting with the true essence of our loved one. However comforting, memories cannot replace their very souls.
Likewise, enjoying great works of art from the past gives us a glimpse into the creative spirit and life of those who have gone before. But this is not the same as experiencing life with them and encountering their very souls.
Whatever it looks like, there’s an essence to the human spirit and soul that cannot be replicated. Many things might allow for meaningful reflections, and these can be freely enjoyed for what they are.
But it’s a mistake to assume creation can ever replace the creator. Perhaps simultaneously we’re thinking too high and too low of ourselves when we do. On the one hand, we should humbly remember we’re not capable of creating life like God. At the same time, we shouldn’t shortchange our dignity by assuming our souls are merely replaceable.
Build, create, and enjoy the many reflections of the human spirit. And remember the human soul is irreplaceable. Each has dignity and worth all its own.