Though the title of Soulmates: Honoring the Mysteries of Love and Relationships by Thomas Moore (Harper Perennial) is sappy, the book’s marrow is tough: Moore talks about the struggle to find meaning and intimacy by invoking the mythopoetic tradition of therapeutic discourse. Like Carl Jung and James Hillman before him, Moore explores that which distinguishes human beings from other animals—the imagination. The soul, Moore says, works in opposition to spirit. While the spirit aspires to intellectual clarity, transcendence and unfettered freedom, the soul is more at home in the beautiful presence of the here and now, “in pursuit of the juices and nutriments of life’s entanglements.” So friendships, love and marriage become contexts in which to observe the soul’s paradoxical movement, its longings for attachments past and its desires for attachments future. Therein lies Moore’s thesis: to nurture one’s soul is to accept “a new perspective in which the struggle of competing values turns into an appreciation for unresolved complexity.” It follows then that a definition of soul as being either good or evil, springing from either natural law or chaos, becoming either selfless or selfish, is a doomed definition. Soul yearnings exist on both sides of the moral coin: “At one time in our lives, we may be ruled by one code rather than another.” A soul’s yearning for sexual pleasure, spiritual feeling or kinship bonding requires examination and reflection so that one can begin an “expansion of soul.” Moore argues that “the modern tendency to resolve tension as soon as possible,” stifles the understanding “that illusions and follies have their own roles to play in the mysterious alchemy of the soulful life.” Soulmates is a book to return to every so often, when one wishes to digest just a bit more of the larger questions pushing in against the borders of our lives.