This article is from the Religion-Shamanism FAQ, by Dean Edwards, Stef Jones, Jilara, Jane Beckman, Ann Albers with numerous contributions by others.
In shamanism, soul is the life force of a person, animal, plant,
or anything which exists on any plane of being. A soul may be any of
the bodies or sheaths in which this life force dwells as well. Thus,
the physical body may sometimes be referred to as the 'animal soul'.
The astral, mental or spiritual bodies may also be referred to as soul
in discussions and literature about shamanism. As the individual life
force, soul may be lost or drained away in part or in whole. When this
happens an individual is affected with some psychic or physical illness
or other malady and a shaman may attempt to retrieve the lost life
force. If enough of this life force is lost or stolen by another a
person may experience serious and debilitating illness or even death.
The Latin word for soul, ANIMUS, may be interpreted as meaning
Tbreath of heavenU or breath of SpiritU. This bears some similarities
to many traditional shamanic views of Soul.
Soul may also be defined as the indwelling individualized spiritual
essence, a divine spark, or unit of awareness.
Dean Edwards (email@example.com)
IMO, soul is an entity that projects portions of its consciousness
into space time; we call these portions personalities, i.e., Ann is
one personality of the soul to which I belong.
Ann Albers (firstname.lastname@example.org)