Meaning of Alma

What is the Soul:

Soul is the immaterial essence that defines individuality and its humanity. The soul is considered the life-giving principle.

Alma comes from Latin soul and from greek psyche, which means ‘human soul’, and, in that sense, soul is synonymous with psyche, ‘vital breath’ and self (the self), but it is also synonymous with individual, person or inhabitant.

According to theology (the study of God), the soul is a part of the individual that contains a divine portion and is believed to survive the death of the body.

Alma is also used to refer to:

  • the life force of something, like the soul of the project;
  • the energy or passion with which something is done, such as, for example, scoring the goal with soul; or
  • a person who drives and inspires something or someone, as, for example, Pablo was the soul of the group.
  • latinisms like Alma mater to refer to the University.

See also:

  • Alma mater
  • Psyche

The soul is also used as a synonym for ghost or spirit, for example, when it refers to a soul in pain, it indicates a soul without a body that prowls around lost and without rest.


The expression soulmate is used to refer to the meeting, generally in a loving sense, of two people who have such a similar essence that they seem like twins, therefore they understand each other and act in a similar way.

See also Soulmate.

Soul in philosophy

The relationship between the body and the soul has been one of the most recurrent themes in history in spiritual and philosophical terms. The ancient Greeks, for example, considered the soul as the motor principle of the body and despite being independent, it necessarily requires the substance of the body for the creation of an individual.

Christianity takes this idea from the soul of the ancient Greeks thanks to the diffusion of Saint Augustine who made the analogy of the “soul that rides the body”.

The ancient Greeks had other currents that defined the soul:

  • Epicureanism: they affirm that the soul is made of atoms like the rest of the body, and both soul and body are mortal.
  • Platonists: they believe in the immortality of the soul as an immaterial and incorporeal substance that is related to the gods but is linked to the world of changes and being.
  • Aristotle: also believed in the immortality of the soul as an inseparable form of the body.

Soul in religions

The concept of soul varies with ideologies and with the passage of time. The concept of the soul as a duality is characteristic of Eastern religions.

The ancient Egyptians, for example, believed in a dual soul where, on the one hand, there is ka or breath, which stays close to the body when it dies, and the ba, which is defined as the spirit that travels to the realm of the dead when it separates from the body.

Chinese Taoism also defines two types of souls that coexist in one body. Polower, more sensitive ying soul that disappears with death, and hunyang soul that survives death and constitutes the principle of ancestor worship.

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