Soul Eaters are ancient spiritual entities that live in another dimension and feed on human souls.
A soul eater has a similar appearance to a Shtriga, humanoid with a long black cloak. It has a somewhat distorted face and black empty eyes. Soul Eaters live in a kind of inter-mundi, pocket-dimension outside of space and time as we know it. These monsters drag human souls out of the physical world, and into their "nest". Souls that are dragged to their nest cannot escape and will be trapped forever, even after the victim's eventual death. According to Bobby, souls will also begin to wither away. But, according to Death, souls can't be destroyed, so prolonged entrapment with the Soul Eater will make them look sicker and cadaveric. Bobby also tells that as soon as the Soul Eater finishes with a house, it will close its nest and make a new one in another unfortunate house, and drag its victims along with it as well so that it can have an emergency "food stock" in lean times - or for "rumminating" their souls, as Bobby points out.
According to conventional lore, Soul Eaters can't be killed. A Celtic sigil can trap them, but in general they are thought to be invulnerable to harm. However, the Men of Letters found a sigil that could kill a Soul Eater when painted on the inside of its "nest" and the inside of the house it inhabited.
Some of the Soul Eaters can mimic ghost's characteristics such as causing cold spots, EMF and flickering lights. On at least three occasions, the hunters believed they were dealing with ghosts, not the monster.
When a Soul Eater is trapped, its victims will remain trapped with it. Killing the Soul Eater, on the other hand, will free all its victims, both the living and the dead. The dead shall move on, while the still living will return to their bodies.
As a Soul Eater's nest exists outside of time and space, its possible for people from different time periods to interact within.
Years ago, a hunter named Harvey called upon Bobby Singer for help with a house, at 207 Oak Street in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with apparently multiple poltergeists, not knowing it was actually a Soul Eater. When Bobby arrived, he found Harvey in a coma on the floor, having apparently been that way for days. Under attack by the Soul Eater in the house and desperate, Bobby tried a Celtic sigil for trapping monsters on the being. To Bobby's surprise, the sigil worked and the Soul Eater was trapped and its nest sealed. Bobby remained unaware of what it was he had faced for years however.
In 2008 or 2009, Rufus Turner ended up catching a case with another Soul Eater and called upon Bobby for backup. The two men originally believed they were dealing with a ghost but eventually determined it was a Soul Eater instead. Realizing that he had faced a Soul Eater before, Bobby decided to use the same sigil since lore stated Soul Eaters couldn't be killed. During the attempt to trap the monster, Bobby's soul was dragged into its nest while the Soul Eater possessed his body to attack Rufus. Rufus was able to finish the sigil and trap the monster. Before leaving the nest, Bobby had a brief encounter with the soul of the 2016's Dean Winchester.
In 2016, a woman renovating the house where Rufus and Bobby had faced the Soul Eater inadvertently broke the sigil trapping the monster and set it loose once more. Sam and Dean Winchester investigated the case and discovered the connection to Bobby and Rufus' old case. They discovered that while conventional lore stated that Soul Eaters couldn't be killed, the Men of Letters had discovered a sigil that could kill them when painted inside the house the Soul Eater was located and inside its nest. Dean allowed the Soul Eater to take him to its nest so he could paint the sigil inside while Sam painted one inside the house. After Dean finished his sigil, the Soul Eater possessed him as it did Bobby but Sam subdued the creature and finished the sigil. The Soul Eater was killed, turning into dust and all of the souls it had trapped were set free. Those still living returned to their bodies while those who had died moved on.
After learning how to kill Soul Eaters, the Winchesters decided to return to the house where Bobby had previously trapped a Soul Eater, kill it and release its victims.
Power and AbilitiesEdit
- Reality Warping - Soul Eaters possessed unique and somewhat very large powers to create their own dimension called "The Nest". Naturally, Soul Eaters inhabit a plane between the human world and another, a sort of inter mundi that exists outside of time and space, and by tapping a large amount of their powers (according to Sam), they created it when hunting their prey. The Nest takes on the appearance of the home it is in, albeit much darker and twisted to mess with their victim's emotions and make them vulnerable and tamed.
- Soul Extracting - Soul Eaters can remove the souls of human beings, dragging them into their realm, which results in their bodies being left in a coma until they die.
- Possession - Soul Eaters can leave their spiritual realm and possess the body of a soul who is trapped within its "nest".
- Invulnerability - Due to being an undead being that exists between this world and another, Soul Eaters are very nearly invulnerable. Even when possessing someone, they can't be harmed by rock salt. A Soul Eater's only known weaknesses are a sigil that can trap them and a sigil that can kill them.
- Electromagnetic Interference - Their presence caused lights to flicker.
- Thermokinesis - They can lower or drop the surrounding temperature with their presence.
- EVP - They can create many voice phenomenons like footsteps or creaking wood to lure their targets.
- Super Stamina - It appears they are have a large amount reserve of stamina. Considering the amount of power they used to create their nest. They also have the ability to indefinitely go without sustenance of human souls even for many years when they are sealed.
- Telekinesis - They are able to move objects without touching it. One such soul eaters, in its hunt it used it to close the door to stop them escaping.
- Invisibility - They are naturally cannot be perceived, unless in its own pocket dimension. When in the physical world, only their hands are visible.
- Teleportation - They displayed ability to move from place to place. They used their ability to move from their own nest to physical world.
- Celtic Trapping Sigil - Emergency sigil to trap monsters. Can trap a Soul Eater in its nest as long as the sigil is in the house.
- Soul Eater Killing Sigil - Sigil drawn in blood both inside the house the Soul Eater inhabits and inside its nest. Once both sigils are complete, the Soul Eater turns to dust and all of its victims' souls are set free.
A soul eater is a folklore figure in the traditional belief systems of some African peoples, notably the Hausa people of Nigeria and Niger. Belief in soul eaters is related to traditional folk beliefs in witchcraft, zombies, and related phenomena.
The soul eater is supposedly able to consume an individual's spirit, causing a wasting disease that can be fatal; "the soul eater is a classical form of the cannibalistic witch." In Hausa belief, the desire and capacity for the practice, termed maita, is rooted in special stones kept in a person's stomach. The trait allegedly can be inherited from one's parents, or can be acquired from an existing practitioner. The soul eater can take the form of a dog or other animal in pursuit of his or her practice — a belief that connects with the beliefs in werewolves, werecats, selkies, and other were-creatures and human/animal beings found in world folklore.
Another belief about soul eaters is that they are men who were cursed by witches and have to eat the souls of humans to live their lives. After the soul eater devours a victim's soul, the victim disappears as dust. The belief survived into African-American folklore in the United States and the Caribbean region.
Related beliefs can be found in other traditional African cultures, like the Fulbe and the Serer, and in cultures outside of Africa too — such as in the tribes of the Mount Hagen area of Papua New Guinea. The hix or ix of the Maya and related peoples is a comparable figure; the Pipil term teyollocuani translates literally as "soul eater." Some traditional religions, from that of the ancient Egyptians to the Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Natchez, contain figures whose names have been translated into English as "soul eater." These mythological figures, however, are spiritual and not human beings, and so are distinctly different from Hausa and comparable beliefs.
In contemporary arts nowadays, the traditional belief in soul-eaters has been adopted by a range of modern horror fiction and fantasy writers, contemporary songwriters, and anime and video game creators for their own uses.
Known Soul EatersEdit
- It would appear that the Soul Eater does more to people than steal their souls, as their bodies cannot function afterward. Bobby states that the bodies wither and die without the souls inside them instead of continuing to function like Sam when he lost his soul.