The Problem With Soul Theories

by Meredith E. 

I had not planned for this to be my first editorial and I’m taking precious time away from my fanfic to write it, but I just have to speak. I have read The Changeling Hypothesis and now Soul of the Phoenix and feel a big need to respond. To me, on the basis of logic, none of the “soul” theories make sense. I will dispute them with a series of numerated points.

1) If Voldemort lost his soul that night in Godric’’s Hollow, what was hiding in the forest in Albania for all those years? It is said in the books, and accepted in these editorials, that his body was destroyed; there is nothing left besides body and soul. What inhabited the back of Quirrell’’s head in Harry’’s first year? What did Wormtail nurse back into some semblance of a body? What rejoined Voldemort’’s new body that night in the graveyard? The only logical answer is his soul.

2) How would the new body of Voldemort still have his memories, plans, hatred, and magical ability? If your soul is the essence of who you are and it is being kept in another body then you don’’t need to re-create your own body. The only use for a body is a place to keep your soul.

3) These theories basically suggest that Voldemort is walking around right now without a soul. If that were the case, he would be like a “victim” of a Dementor’’s Kiss, which means a life worse than death, with no sense of who you are. In GoF when the Kiss is administered to Crouch Jr. they have lost him as a witness because he will no longer be able to remember or tell his story. Therefore, without his soul, Voldemort could not have done any of the things we’’ve seen him do in the last five years, especially not telling Harry his life story in GoF.

4) If Harry is playing host to Voldemort’’s soul, whether instead of or in addition to his own, he would not be the person he is today. Especially not if that soul (which is filled with evil and hate) had been “nurtured” for ten years by the Durleys’ hateful neglect. Harry would be another Tom Riddle. Let’’s face it, you can’’t have the soul of the most evil wizard in perhaps a century inside you and be a hero.

5) In Soul of the Phoenix, they discuss Fawkes’ so-called connection to Harry as proof that he is keeping Harry’’s soul. They may be connected because of the wands, however, Fawkes was not acting out of loyalty or a spiritual connection to Harry but rather to Dumbledore. In CoS Dumbledore says ““You must have shown me real loyalty down in the Chamber. Nothing but that could have called Fawkes to you,”” (US paperback pg. 420). And in OotP, Fawkes shows up and sacrifices himself in the MoM, not to save Harry, but Dumbledore. It is his own human, and no other, that Fawkes has a psychic connection to.

In summary, it is just logically impossible for Voldemort to be soul-less and for Fawkes to have Harry’’s soul. I find the suggestion that Harry is housing Voldemort’’s soul to be laughable. Of course, as with all theories and rebuttals, I may be forced to eat my words some day, but this one is just so outside the realm of logic — including the rules JK Rowling has set up for her universe — that I just cannot believe it.