We are not human beings on a spiritual journey; we are spiritual beings on a human journey.
For centuries humans have tried to define and explain soul. It is a mystery each of us must unravel on our own. Science nor religion cannot tell us with certainty when our individual souls are infused into out bodies or at what stage in dying that they leave. While we have soul, we are challenged to cultivate and nurture our invisible vital essence. Religions of many persuasions are built around practices to nurture soul; they offer us rules for ritual and doctrines for debate, which may or may not facilitate our soul-growth.
Wouldn't it be consoling indeed if we could solve the sweet mystery of life known as soul? To accomplish this, one must embark on a personal pilgrimage, a journey, a quest, for what is unknown. In scripture, the few references to pilgrims were of those who journeyed in foreign nations. In unfamiliar territory, they followed a promise and forged their faith in strange lands. Today, pilgrims journey in foot and in the air. They search on mountaintops, in sanctuaries, and in the pages of books.
In the beginning, there was nothing but the essence of God in a state of non-being. With the big bang of science, God moved into a state of being, manifesting as the expanding universe. As the universe began to take on a physical aspect, the pure spirit of God became diluted and constrained as it entered the world of matter. This is where the journey of the Pilgrim Soul begins.
The first beings on earth were not physical. There was a gradual separation of the spirit of God moving through the layers of matter. In the physical world, Earth was solidifying and primitive life emerging. Nature continued to evolve, as explained by Darwin, and the spirit formed human souls, separated from the Divine Source and from each other by dense bodies of flesh and bone. An age we remember as Atlantis.