Psyche and Eros from a Roman mosaic
Psyche and Eros from a Roman mosaic


(Greek Ψυχη) "the soul , mind, spirit; breath; life, one's life, the invisible animating principle or entity which occupies and directs the physical body; understanding." Psykhe comes from ψυχή (psūkhē) "life" in the sense of "breath", formed from the verb ψύχω psukhō, "to blow". 

In relation to the human being, psyche refers to the human soul.

In esoteric Greek traditions, the human soul was symbolized as a beautiful virgin cherished by Eros (divine love). Apuleius tells the story in "The Golden Ass."

"All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of anthrōpos humans, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds. There are also epouranios heavenly bodies, and epigeios terrestrial bodies: but the glory of the epouranios is one, and the glory of the epigeios is another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differs from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a psychikos soul body; it is raised a pneumatikos spiritual body. There is a psychikos body, and there is a pneumatikos body. And so it is written, The first anthrōpos human Adam was made a living soul ; the last Adam was made a giving life spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is pneumatikos, but that which is psychikos; and afterward that which is pneumatikos." - I Corinthians 15

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