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Caution: Soul Mate Ahead – Book and Concept Review

Any examination of the concept of ‘soul mates’ must surely include a very important book entitled Caution Soul Mate Ahead! by Janet Cunningham, PhD, and Michael Ranucci. While most of the world’s spiritual believers are searching for or yearning for that one special someone they consider as their soul mate, that journey often fails to recognize the true nature of soul mates. In fact, the title of Dr. Cunningham’s book introduces a critical warning about soul mates: “Caution…”.

There are more than 18 million references to soul mates on the internet, including more than one million individual pages, posts and articles. Within these discussions, different terms are assigned for soul mates, such as teacher soul mates, romantic soul mates, twin flames, essence twins, companion soul mates, task companions, sharing soul mates, constant soul mates, karmic soul mates, and so forth. Many of these are shades of the same generic type, helping us to categorize some of the more subtle variations among souls.

For the purposes of this article, we will examine the four general types or categories of soul mates identified by Cunningham and Ranucci in their book and which exemplify the use of the term “Caution” in the title of this important book. Here are the four categories:

1. Karmic soul mates

This type of soul mate is created through life experiences, and it may be the most common type of soul mate relationship. It is an individual with whom we have “unfinished business”; an unresolved issue left over from an earlier time in this life or in a previous existence. This may be the resolution of an incomplete relationship or an issue of strong dissension; yet this soul mate is the only one with whom we can resolve the karmic issue.

2. Companion soul mates

We most often think of our soul mates as being companion souls, because they are created by sharing many lifetimes together. In other words, we understand the needs of each other’s soul; we recognize and feel comfortable around their energy; and we easily create a bond that should continue to evolve throughout this lifetime and the lives hereafter. Although such soul mates make for perfect companions, they also can jolt us into the greatest learning and emotional experiences set forth in our individual life plans. Such strong experiences may come in the form of possession or control issues, jealousy, personal power, trust and even fear.

3. Twin souls or twin flames

Dr. Cunningham describes this type of soul mate as “the one for whom we search, the one who makes us feel complete.” At the same time, she cautions that the twin soul is the person who appears most opposite to us and who could be both “strikingly and disturbingly similar”. “Although life on the earth is a temporary experience, true love from the heart/soul is not temporary.” Yet we must also recognize that timing is everything when it comes to twin soul relationships: if both halves are not ready for reunification, their interaction in this life could be a volatile experience due to the strong opposition of their personalities. Thus, just because two such souls may meet in the same physical life does not mean they are meant to be together in that life. (See additional Soul Channel article on twin souls and twin flames.)

4. Soul union

This is a difficult but beautiful concept and soul relationship, and it is marvelous that Cunningham and Ranucci have introduced it to the spiritual community. Soul union is a bond between souls which begins in a physical life, has sufficient time in that life to mature, and evolves into an exceptionally strong, loving bond. It is then carried over into future physical lives, becoming stronger with each incarnation. To understand it best, you would need to read the book; however here are some brief passages channeled by Dr. Cunningham’s clients and which provide a glimpse into the concept:

    • “It is the process of building a soul-bridge. If there could be atoms of the soul, you are exchanging atoms of the soul. …You literally have atoms, if there could be atoms,” of each other’s soul.
    • “This type of soul mate needs to take care of you in the sense that he needs, for his own growth, to know that you are well. …This is a soul dedicated — dedicated — to the growth of feeling with you…” even if the two of you are rarely together in this specific incarnation.
    • “The souls are each a part of the other in growth to unity, so that you continue to meet, continue always to affect each other. …This does not mean that you have to be with him. You are as essential to him on earth as he is to you.”
    • “What pulls you together is love that transcends the outer personality of this lifetime. The bond is always…you cannot break it, change it. What is to be done is just love.”

Throughout the book, Cunningham and Ranucci also remind us that we always have several soul mates in our lives, and they can be a lover, companion, friend, family member, close work associate, same sex or opposite sex, and same or different skin color and culture. Most importantly, “a soul mate can be the person who pushes us to greatest soul growth, which is the primary reason we incarnated on earth.” “Often, it is our strongest soul mates who have the ability or affect to push us beyond ourselves for greater soul evolution.”

Finally, we must not overlook the great value of this book for providing detailed insights into the struggles, failures and successes in working through issues such as love of others, love of oneself, fear of love loss, patience, forgiveness and pathways into personal healing. Along the way, the discussions are supported through many clear, practical examples of actual case studies, often providing perspectives from both of the involved soul mates.

A Tribe Returned

Doctor Cunningham is also the author of the widely acclaimed book A Tribe Returned. This remarkable book describes the identification of more than 25 soul mates — an unusually large soul group — who had lived together and who died together in the torture and massacre of an American Sioux Indian tribe in South Dakota. All of these souls have reincarnated in this lifetime to share their story, release the intense, angry energy of the torture and massacre, and celebrate the truly eternal bond of their souls.

The past life relationship of this remarkable soul group required sixteen years to uncover — not as a research project, but as a somewhat miraculous series of events among Dr. Cunningham’s clients, friends and family members. The individual memories unfolded through past-life regressions, spontaneous memories, bodywork, channeling, and an unusual gift of a painting. Actual recordings of regression sessions were carefully transcribed and captured in the book. As an expert past life therapist, Dr. Cunningham also assisted in releasing the traumatic stored memories of the torture and massacre. For spiritualists on the path of awakening, this book will be a cherished part of their journey.

Altered States Radio Talk Show

J.Kelly & J.Cunningham recorded interview: Part-1 Part-2 Part-3 Part-4
(click on a link to open the attachment; click again to start the audio recording; large audio file ==> thanks for your patience)

In 2001, John Kelly (operator of The Soul Channel) conducted an internet radio talk show on Voice America; the talk show was called ‘Altered States” and focused on interviewing exceptionally skilled therapists and authors. In July of that year, John interviewed Janet Cunningham and discussed both of the above books, including discussions on the various soul types described above. The archives of the Altered States radio talk show are being excavated from our files and edited. The interview with Janet Cunningham is the first one completed, and it is now available for your listening enjoyment or for downloading on The Soul Channel.

The original interview was 60 minutes, including commercials; so the edited version has been divided into four parts, each of which is 10 to 15 minutes long. Links to all four parts appear above, as well as in the right sidebar of selected pages of The Soul Channel, including the VFR page (Videos, Films and Recordings). Any comments you may have on this article, the books discussed herein, or the radio talk show recordings will be sincerely appreciated.


“Thank you for participating in The Soul Channel!” — John