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Question I love you with all my… soul (?)

thetopher

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Just a thought; the more we equate vampire love with human love the less Spike's 'getting a soul' to love Buffy 'properly' actually means.
After all, if he could love her 'well enough' without it then his sacrifice for her, the one he tells her all about, isn't as big a leap as he likes to make out.
 
r2dh2
r2dh2
I agree.

DeadlyDuo

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You think Darla would've kept the baby because she wanted to be with Angel?
Darla wants Angelus, not Angel, and has tried to kill Angel in episodes such as S2 'Reprise'.
Darla also slept with Angel in an attempt to draw Angelus back out via making Angel lose his soul. Connor would keep her and Angel in each other's orbit which means that Darla would have repeated opportunities to try and draw Angel back in. Darla's not an idiot, she could use Conor as leverage over Angel so long as she was clever about how she played it.

Yes, soulless Darla didn't want the baby and soulled Darla knew that. I don't see any logic in saying that soulless Darla would suddenly want the baby once she'd given birth it. It's far more likely, given what we know of Darla, that she would've killed it. The only person who knows for sure is soulled Darla herself.
Darla doesn't know how she'll feel, she FEARS that she won't be able to love Connor whilst soulless, but there is no confirmation as to whether or not that would've been the case. Animals in the wild are protective of their young, it's possible that a soulless Darla would be too. Connor isn't just a random baby, he's her son and the only one she'd ever have. That increases his value. Connor is the son of the vampire not the human, that's got to make a difference.

I'm not gonna get into the real world abortion issue because its not really applicable.
I think it's relevant to an extent in that you are counting Darla wanting an abortion as a point against her when it really isn't. The pregnancy was unplanned, some women have an abortion to get rid of an unplanned pregnancy whilst others accept the pregnancy and consider it a "happy surprise". Darla tried to get rid of her unplanned pregnancy and when she was unable to, she began to accept it.

Also, consider the fact that Darla's pregnancy essentially ended in her death (was it ever clarified whether she could've birthed Connor and lived or was sacrificing herself the only way?) Women are medically advised to terminate pregnancies if it places their lives in danger. Some choose to run the risk whilst others choose to follow doctors' orders. That doesn't mean those that have abortions automatically lose points on their capabilities as mothers.

Just a thought; the more we equate vampire love with human love the less Spike's 'getting a soul' to love Buffy 'properly' actually means.
After all, if he could love her 'well enough' without it then his sacrifice for her, the one he tells her all about, isn't as big a leap as he likes to make out.
I always found Spike getting a soul for Buffy to be problematic. Depending on whether or not you consider souled Spike to be a completely different person to unsouled Spike, either Spike committed an act of self-harm on himself in order to be "acceptable" to Buffy or he essentially committed suicide. Either way is not a good thing.
 

white avenger

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He desperately loves Buffy, but he misses the mark so badly without understanding why to the point that he's consumed by his desire of establishing a real emotional connection with Buffy. He experiences emotional pain and doesn't understand why he cannot make her love him.
This could be sheer lack of experience on Spike's part. Almost certainly, William had had little or no actual experience with any female except his own mother, and it's a pretty safe bet that he never had anything resembling a romantic relationship with anyone except Dru. Assuming that the way that she treated him was his only boy/girl reference, it's not too much of a stretch to understand what dictated his actions in trying to woo Buffy. Remember, his idea when Dru rejected him for a Chaos demon was to knock her out, chain her up, and torture her until she realized that he was the man or her. We saw something quite similar with Buffy in "Seeing Red," with the exception of the fact that Buffy wasn't as easy to overpower as Dru. (That might even explain the look of astonishment on his face when she actually fought him off) The more Dru rejected him, the more certain Spike was that Fate had decreed that they were destined to be together. And his approach to establishing a relationship with Buffy was pretty much the same, even to the point of watching miserably while she "betrayed" her with Riley, the same as Dru did with Angel at every opportunity.
 
DeadlyDuo
DeadlyDuo
I think Angelus trained Dru to act in that way towards him which is why she sees nothing wrong with it, she was still sleeping with Spike in Season 2 despite Angelus being on the scene so she didn't just ditch him..

r2dh2

Never go for the kill when you can go for the pain
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This could be sheer lack of experience on Spike's part. Almost certainly, William had had little or no actual experience with any female except his own mother, and it's a pretty safe bet that he never had anything resembling a romantic relationship with anyone except Dru. Assuming that the way that she treated him was his only boy/girl reference, it's not too much of a stretch to understand what dictated his actions in trying to woo Buffy. Remember, his idea when Dru rejected him for a Chaos demon was to knock her out, chain her up, and torture her until she realized that he was the man or her. We saw something quite similar with Buffy in "Seeing Red," with the exception of the fact that Buffy wasn't as easy to overpower as Dru. (That might even explain the look of astonishment on his face when she actually fought him off) The more Dru rejected him, the more certain Spike was that Fate had decreed that they were destined to be together. And his approach to establishing a relationship with Buffy was pretty much the same, even to the point of watching miserably while she "betrayed" her with Riley, the same as Dru did with Angel at every opportunity.
Yes, I agree.

But I think that I still stand by my opinion that while being soulless might make it easier to love some one (as you clearly said it, one doesn't care about the judgment of others), it doesn't make it easier to be in love.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but in the Buffyverse the soul is equivalent to having a conscience. Without a moral compass, Spike’s ability to distinguish right from wrong doesn’t exist and, as you said, he mostly acts as he has been “conditioned” to act, or as he thinks that the object of his affection would like him to act.

IMO, without a soul (i.e. a conscience), he’d inevitably make mistakes that’d hurt Buffy and Seeing Red is the perfect example. I truly believe that his intent wasn’t to hurt her, but he does. Now, even without experience with women, I seriously doubt that William would have ever acted the way Spike did. IMO, without a soul, Spike would inevitably make mistakes that would hurt Buffy and push her away from him, causing him more pain than pleasure. He needs a soul in order to be able to make moral choices on his own without taking cues from Buffy.
 

white avenger

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But I think that I still stand by my opinion that while being soulless might make it easier to love some one (as you clearly said it, one doesn't care about the judgment of others), it doesn't make it easier to be in love.
As I said in an earlier post, having no conscience or moral guide would actually make it easier for Spike to love (or at least feel the emotion that he identified with that word) because he would have no inhibitions about who, or, for that matter, what, he chose to love. Race, age, gender, even species, wouldn't matter in the least, because he wouldn't have any restraints as to what was considered right or wrong. Spike could just as easily claimed to love a male water buffalo as Buffy, and he wouldn't see anythig wrong with the idea at all. If it feels good, do it. Spike apparently was unique, however, in that, unlike his mother when she was turned, he drew the line at incest.

Maybe what soulless Spike called "love" was actually just lust, but for him apparently the two were virtually one and the same.
 

r2dh2

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As I said in an earlier post, having no conscience or moral guide would actually make it easier for Spike to love (or at least feel the emotion that he identified with that word) because he would have no inhibitions about who, or, for that matter, what, he chose to love. Race, age, gender, even species, wouldn't matter in the least, because he wouldn't have any restraints as to what was considered right or wrong. Spike could just as easily claimed to love a male water buffalo as Buffy, and he wouldn't see anythig wrong with the idea at all. If it feels good, do it. Spike apparently was unique, however, in that, unlike his mother when she was turned, he drew the line at incest.

Maybe what soulless Spike called "love" was actually just lust, but for him apparently the two were virtually one and the same.
I think it’s a problem with semantics since I’m not a native English speaker. I absolutely agree with you.

My point is that Soulless!Spike would most definitely keep making mistakes that would hurt Buffy, hence, pushing her away from him instead of bringing them closer. All I’m saying is that I doubt that Soulless!Spike would ever have a real relationship with Buffy as long as he doesn’t have the capacity of making moral choices on his own and not as a response to her reactions. Besides the AR, I can think of Dead Things. Buffy is consumed by guilt and Spike cannot understand at all why. And don’t get me wrong, I actually agree with Spike in that moment, it was an accident and she’s done so much good, in the big picture it doesn’t sound too terrible (maybe my morals are a bit loose… but that’s another discussion). But for Buffy, it was a situation that she couldn’t live with and Spike doesn’t understand it at all why.

So yes, it's easier for him to love, but it's not easier to have a relationship (what I called to be in love = being a situation where feelings are reciprocated).
 

MrsDupas

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I think it’s a problem with semantics since I’m not a native English speaker. I absolutely agree with you.

My point is that Soulless!Spike would most definitely keep making mistakes that would hurt Buffy, hence, pushing her away from him instead of bringing them closer. All I’m saying is that I doubt that Soulless!Spike would ever have a real relationship with Buffy as long as he doesn’t have the capacity of making moral choices on his own and not as a response to her reactions. Besides the AR, I can think of Dead Things. Buffy is consumed by guilt and Spike cannot understand at all why. And don’t get me wrong, I actually agree with Spike in that moment, it was an accident and she’s done so much good, in the big picture it doesn’t sound too terrible (maybe my morals are a bit loose… but that’s another discussion). But for Buffy, it was a situation that she couldn’t live with and Spike doesn’t understand it at all why.

So yes, it's easier for him to love, but it's not easier to have a relationship (what I called to be in love = being a situation where feelings are reciprocated).
I always have problems with semantics. But I agree with both @white avenger and you.
 

FirstEvil78

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I am of the opinion that a soul is needed to fully experience love. Without a soul, I think that lust is in the driver's seat even if there are some real feelings behind that lust.
 

WillowFromBuffy

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I think there is something inherently selfish about love. Can you love someone or something without wanting to somehow possess them/it?

You see this with Buffy and Angel. Angel leaves Buffy, because he realises that she cannot be happy with him, but he does not want to go, and he still gets jealous when she follows his plea to find love somewhere else.

Love is both wonderful and horrible. Soulless love is love unchecked. Spike loves Buffy, but he is unable to let her go when she asks him to, so he ends up hurting her.
 
r2dh2
r2dh2
Nicely said.

thetopher

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When I think of selfless love on Buffy or Angel I always think more familial than romantic; like Giles love for Buffy or Buffy's love for Dawn or Angel's giving up Connor so he can get a happy family life, Faith sacrificing herself for Angel, etc.

It's also worth noting that we don't see vampires exhibit this type of love very often. No vampire feels much in the way of familial love or camaraderie for their bloodline or whatever, and if they feel a mild version of this is always trumped by the stronger, more obsessive, romantic love.

I guess that's why I'm more impressed/moved by Spike's tenderness towards Dawn rather than anything he does for Buffy, soul or no.
 

KatrinaL

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A soul is needed. Soulless love is dangerous and unreliable.
 

Annie Hall

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A soul is needed. Soulless love is dangerous and unreliable.
Actually, this comment reminded me of Spike in Seeing Red:

"Trust is for old marrieds, Buffy. Great love is wild and passionate and dangerous. It burns and consumes."

Nice way of defining love for a soulless vampire and it makes sense, there's no restrain and it can be very dangerous.
 
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His behavior is certainly very similar to human behavior, but we haven't seen him "loving" someone. Have we?
If in the Buffyverse we haven't seen any other demon feeling (soulless) love, then it must be the case that only vampires can love, right? Vampires are "special" demons because they retain certain human attributes and also retain the memories of their host. That would be my explanation.

Anya had a soul as a demon according to Selfless:

D'HOFFRYN. Hmm. You want to take it back. Must be twelve bodies in there. Such a thing—not easily done. But not impossible. You're a big girl, Anyanka. You understand how this works. The proverbial scales must balance. In order to restore the lives of the victims, the fates require a sacrifice. The life and soul of a vengeance demon.
But I'm slightly puzzled by this comment though. Does it mean that Anya had the capacity of loving (in a selfless way) when she was a demon?
 

BuffyLover88

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But I'm slightly puzzled by this comment though. Does it mean that Anya had the capacity of loving (in a selfless way) when she was a demon?
I think that main question is what is a soul for a vengeance demon? Is it the same as a soul for a human being?
 

Puppet

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Do we have canonical evidence that demons don't have souls? This might be a discussion for a different thread, but reading through this one made me think of it. My own personal head-canon has always been that only vampires are soulless. But that, while demons have souls, they aren't the same as a human one, cause they aren't, y'know, human.

Anya would be tricky, though, since like a vampire she started out human, but then became a demon.
 

thetopher

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Do we have canonical evidence that demons don't have souls?
I was gonna say no, a demon is a demon and demons don't seem able to change and adapt very well. And I think that on some level a soul is needed to change and grow and demons don't seem to do much in the way of development.
You have demons that are 'evil' and want to crush, kill, destroy and end the world- like those apocalypse sisters in The Zeppo, you have your criminal demons like the Hellions who want chaos and fun, you have demons that are like animals; all they seem to do is produce offspring and care nothing about morality, they can be harmful or not depending on what they eat/how they reproduce, and then there are balancing demons who seem nice and/or harmless.

LA seems to have had all types living there happily enough but the Hellmouth only really got the bad sort; except Clem.

But then I remembered that demon from 'Judgement', the one whose species was savage and violent/hostile but who had somehow reformed himself into the protector of that 'sacred' pregnant lady. So clearly some demons can and do change themselves for the better.

Also half-breeds like Doyle and Whistler exist and seem to have fully functioning souls, judging by their actions. no 'half-souls' or partial souls due to interbreeding or anything.
I don't even know how that would work; 'You, you got my eyes kid, but that soul of yours is just like your father's. He was a worthless bum too.'
 

DeadlyDuo

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I was gonna say no, a demon is a demon and demons don't seem able to change and adapt very well. And I think that on some level a soul is needed to change and grow and demons don't seem to do much in the way of development.
Lorne is a demon and has a soul, and the chaos demon seemed quite civil. Spike adapted despite being soulless (though he didn't really have a choice.). Demons seem to have a code of not killing other demons which is why Spike got beaten up in Goodbye Iowa for supposedly breaking it (even though the only demon we saw him kill was the one in Doomed.) It could be because he was seen as having an alliance with the slayer.
 

thetopher

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Lorne is a demon and has a soul, and the chaos demon seemed quite civil. Spike adapted despite being soulless (though he didn't really have a choice.). Demons seem to have a code of not killing other demons which is why Spike got beaten up in Goodbye Iowa for supposedly breaking it (even though the only demon we saw him kill was the one in Doomed.) It could be because he was seen as having an alliance with the slayer.
Do you bother to read the rest of my post other than the part you you quoted? ;)
I said yes, some demons are indeed nice and can change so they do indeed have souls, but it seems fair to say that demonic souls are somewhat different to human ones. Humans seem more individualist whereas demons tend to designated by species; some species are bad and some good but their are exceptions.
Two points:
- Lorne is from another dimension, a hell dimension, and its possible that the demons there have different metaphysical rules when it comes to souls and the like. Looking at what happened to Angel's 'demonic self' in Pylea I'd say its likely.
- Yes, the chaos demon 'seemed' civil and polite but he could be an awful baby-eater on the weekends, we really don't know anything about him/it.
- Spike had a modification chip which acted as a poor substitute for a soul, which meant it had to adapt to something that was forced upon him. I'd say that his changes were very limited.
As for him killing other demons and becoming an outcast, I think its more to do with him allying himself with Buffy and killing demons for fun. That obviously crossed some universal code of conduct. After all plenty of demons and vampires have codes of honor; The Master's minions, The Three, The Eliminati. These tend to be fairly rigid though, keeping with the idea that vampires are static and unchanging/slow to adapt.
 

DeadlyDuo

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After all plenty of demons and vampires have codes of honor; The Master's minions, The Three, The Eliminati. These tend to be fairly rigid though, keeping with the idea that vampires are static and unchanging/slow to adapt.
In the Wishverse, the Master incorporated the concept of mass production which would be adapting from the traditional hunt. Vampires are slow to adapt but Rome wasn't built in a day. Normal vampires are much more evolved compared to the Turok Han despite both being vampires.
 

AlphaFoxtrot

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The Soul lore is Anthrocentric, and is mostly concerned with vampires. For the most common, and the most tragic fallacy to believe regarding vampires is that they are the same person they were in life. But they do have souls, as that whole zompires thing from the comic demonstrated, an otherworldly demon does possess them.

Regarding other demons, alien forms of life with alien forms of ethics and alien conceptions of consciousness. They have souls, just not human ones. But it's mostly speculation beyond that.
 
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