Monday, June 26, 2006

Kindred Spirit

How would you define a kindred spirit?

(And, for extra points - but not to replace an answer - where is the term from? It could be more than one place, but there's one specific...and Stx, you're not allowed to answer the E.C. question until 5 people answer ;) )

21 comments:

defen said...

The extra credit first, because it's easiest: Anne of Green Gables.

To me, a kindred spirit is someone who appreciates the smallest (and largest) (usually unnoticed) things in God's world and accepts that I appreciate them, too.

Note: This is not the definition of friend.

Note, too: No two definitions of kindred spirit will be the same. Except as defined by two kindred spirits. ;-)

Stx said...

Defen - I like the way you think. should've guessed that you'd know the extra credit...

I pretty much agree on the definition on a kindred spirit. It's just two people that are on the same wavelength, that see certain esoteric things the same way. They don't always need to NOTICE the same things, but if one notices them, the other (yes, Defen) appreciates them as well.

It's what gives you the "click" of connecting that makes you feel like someone would make a really good friend. Again, that may or may not be true. And I certainly have friends who are not kindred spirits and have met kindred spirits who I could never be friends with.

In short, yeah, I'm with defen.

Stx said...

P.S. Maybe Defen and I are kindred spirits? ;)

TRW said...

Sorry, defen, I shoulda known you'd know. Just 'cause...you would!

I agree, I agree, but neither of you mentioned imagination-an absolute must for a KS!!

...and there's more :)

Stx said...

Hm, just for fun, I DA (disagree).

Imagination was a prereq for Anne's kindred spirits. Not necessarily for everybody else's...

Agree? Disagree? (This is fun!)

defen said...

The beauty of defining this term is that there are no absolutes. If you have a great imagination, TRW, it would naturally follow that your kindred spirit(s) would require one, too. But my kindred spirit(s) don't necessarily need to be that way.

Of course, we can complicate this by saying that even an individual will have a few definitions for the term.

A thought: One can become another person's kindred spirit by actively choosing to appreciate that which their friend appreciates, even if they'd never have thought to appreciate it before.

TRW - "...and there's more :)" - What do you mean?

Scraps said...

Just for the record, I knew the answer to the extra credit before I read the replies. I loved the Anne of Green Gables books when I was younger (and for that matter, were I to read them again now, I probably still would).

A kindred spirit is someone who knows and understands you without having to hear an explanation. Someone who knows you, with all of your flaws, and not only accepts you but loves you for them. And a kindred spirit is someone that YOU know and accept and love the same way, because kindred-spirithood has to be a two-way street.

TRW said...

Stx: Maybe imagination is the wrong word. But it's something that makes kindred spirits actually be aware of each other...kind of an ability to step outside the physical reality...never mind.

Defen: Maybe you're right..maybe I was just defining Anne's kindred spirits (although they remind me of my own ;) ).

But I think I disagree with your thought. A kindred spirit WOULD appreciate the things that are important to the other kindred spirit. It doesn't have to be for everything, but just appreciating things 'cause your friends love them is plain ol' friendship.

"And there's more" - Just what we've been doing! There're so many different ways to define a KS!!

Scraps: I'm not surprised about you either ;)

I agree with sentence #1 of your definition. The rest of it, I'm not sure. Shouldn't that apply in all friendships?

To all: I think KS goes above and beyond friendship. My question is - how? (It's been answered pretty well so far, but I'd love to hear - well, read - more!)

defen said...

"A kindred spirit is someone who knows and understands you without having to hear an explanation. Someone who knows you, with all of your flaws, and not only accepts you but loves you for them. And a kindred spirit is someone that YOU know and accept and love the same way, because kindred-spirithood has to be a two-way street."

Scraps - I agree with TRW that you've blurred the lines between kindred-spirithood and friendship. (Perhaps you're lucky and all your friends are kindred spirits!) In my opinion, a kindred spirit does not have to know you or your flaws. A friend does that. But a kindred spirit may even be someone you've never spoken to, it may be someone you've never met, and it may be someone you've only read about.




"It doesn't have to be for everything, but just appreciating things 'cause your friends love them is plain ol' friendship."

TRW - No. I have a friend who loves keeping up with current world affairs, who follows politics, who actually enjoys discussing those subjects. [grimace] I don't appreciate any of those. I do enjoy listening to my friend talk about them, yes - because we're friends. I fully accept and respect that my friend has these interests that I will never share. I love and appreciate my friend.

But I don't love or appreciate politics - nothing could make me appreciate politics (except my own desire to do so). And that's why my friend and I - and we're good friends, the best - are not kindred spirits. At least, not in that area. Because appreciating my friend (and that's a staple of friendship) is not the same as appreciating the things my friend appreciates (a staple of kindred-spirithood).

dragon said...

"True friendship starts the moment one person says to another, 'What? You too? I thought I was the only one!'"

TRW said...

Defen...True. I see what you're saying (writing ;) ). Being passionate about the same things is part of kindred-spiritness - 'cause then you just say one word, and the other person responds with another word, which to anyone else, would make no sense at all, but because it's you and the KS, it's awesome!

Dragon-ain't that a fact!

Scraps said...

Points taken. Halevai all of my friends should be kindred spirits...or even real friends, for that matter.

kasamba said...

Frumactress, you are my kindred spirit.

TRW said...

Scraps: AMAIN!!

Kasamba: You don't know how that makes me smile - very widely.

Sometimes you see someone (or read their blog) and wish that they'd think you're a kindred spirit 'cause you think they're one, but you're too shy to say anything and they're sooooo popular!

I'm truly and sincerely touched :)

TRW said...

...or maybe you do know how that makes me smile, 'cause KS's just know, don't they?

Scraps said...

I think that one of the most painful experiences in life is when a kindred spirit cannot be a friend. It hurts so much more.

Okee said...

ahhh! I love this discussion! I am an avid anne-with-an-'e' lover since fourth grade, and I always felt that Anne was my kindred spirit.
But it's true -a kindred spirit is not necessarily a friend, although I can't imagine how anyone could ever judge a fellow kindred spirit unfavorably, ever. We all have a soft spot for those who we feel share a small part of our souls with us. And we feel that soul-spirit-connection most with someone who shares a trait or love that share -but it's usually something that we feel sets us apart in a positive way, something that other people notice, remark upon, and either applaud or deride, depending on their own mishegas.

well, whatever it is, it's very cool when you can think to yourself -"ah, a kindred spirit! Oh, hey, maybe even if I say it aloud, they'll get the reference to Anne...wow!"

Okee said...

(sorry for repetition...technical difficulties...I'm sure you understand...:-)

TRW said...

Scraps: Yes. (pause for a moment) Yes. It hurts.

Okee: I love your explanation! It fits so well!!

"it's very cool when you can think to yourself -"ah, a kindred spirit! Oh, hey, maybe even if I say it aloud, they'll get the reference to Anne...wow!"

That's why I put up the post to begin with. I was having a discussion with my sister about kindred spirits and how there seems to be a lack of them (but that's what makes KS-ness special, isn't it?), and I decided to see how the blog world holds up in terms of KSs.

(And don't worry about the repetition - I felt your pain ;) so I just deleted one)

Okee said...

Thanks!!

And, yeah, I tend to think that more kindred spirits can be found on the blogworld than our own, non-virtual worlds. Baruch Hashem for the internet, right?

TRW said...

Hmmm...I think that people express their kindred-spiritness better in writing - and that's the internet advantage. I don't know if in person, the same KSs that we see here would come across. It's harder in person to give up so much of yourself. Because of the anonymaty of the internet, you can let your guard down a little...I guess.

*Thoughtful*