What is the difference between soul and spirit?

There is much confusion between our soul and our spirit. If you look at any dictionary, these words seem synonymous.

Let’s consider these words more carefully. First of all, many people do not believe or experience either. An example of this attitude would be any atheist such as Karl Marx. Secondly, others know and experience their souls but don’t know or experience their spirits.


Jung and many others are examples of this position, although Jung knew that the soul presupposes a spirit he plead ignorance to any scientific proof of the spirit. A third category can be found in religious people who believe that we cannot know about these things at all. We have to believe these things on faith.

Classic Insights encourages students to explore their own spiritual selves through learning about great people and their most profound ideas. Through this study we can learn that our soul life is more akin to our feeling life, whereas our spiritual life is more akin to our life of pure thought.

For example, if your draw a circle according to your feelings, it is different for everyone, but the concept of a circle is the same for everyone no matter what your race, color or creed.

All of our courses touch on this, but we do have a special course on Jung, Herman Hesse, and Gnosticism in Modern Form: