As many of us are aware, the Bleach universe is mainly divided into three realms, namely the Human world where the humans reside, the Sereitei or Soul Society where the Shinigami and purified souls reside and the Hueco Mundo which is basically the equivalent of Bleach’s version of a dimension where unsatisfied souls reside, that is crowded by mindless hollows.
All three realms co-exist in harmony due to the supreme and enigmatic being known as Reio or Soul King.
The primordial God of the Bleach universe, he is singlehandedly responsible for the creation of everything and has unimaginable levels of reiatsu. If one thinks that all the reiatsu to ever exist belongs to him, he/she is probably correct and it completely makes sense for Reio to take the mantle of God.
Although asserting dominance, we have received very little screentime and have little information about him but what we have is enough to intrigue one’s mind towards the enticing figure. His journey to the current state of the world is also not a very peaceful one. Let’s find out more about the mysterious entity.
Warning: Manga spoilers for Bleach TYBW are discussed, so read at your own risk!
Who Is The Soul King In Bleach?
Reio’s true origins are mentioned in the Bleach Novel series, “Can’t Fear Your Own World” which reveals more information about a variety of subjects like the five noble houses, the Arrancar, the Fullbringers and especially, the Soul King himself.
His origins date to a million years prior to the main story, where the whole world existed as one single realm. There were no different realms and all beings and creatures existed on this land. Hollows were rampant in this world and went on killing everyone. Amidst this chaos, came out a single powerful being.
This ethereal being was a hybrid of all the races that would emerge out of him, for instance, Shinigami, Quincy and even humans. He was the messiah of the people who were tormented by the Hollows and his power was so immense that he could reduce the hollows to mere sand.
Although he would save everyone from the destruction caused by the hollows, his act of mercilessly killing the mindless creatures would result in the destabilization of the world as he would threaten its balance.
Why was the Soul King sealed In Bleach?
This act of imbalance drew the attention of five ancestral beings who were prominent figures of the world at that time and also the ones who would go on to form the five great noble houses of the Soul Society namely the Kuchiki clan, Shihoin clan, Shiba clan, Tsunayashiro clan and one unnamed clan.
Although the Shiba clan lost their nobility status after the death of Kaein Shiba, the other four clans gained prominence and continued their rise.
Coming back to the topic, these five individuals planned to use the power of this ethereal being that would act as the crucible of life. They go on to divide the world into three realms as we know it and create the cycle of proper life and death. This ethereal being would come to be known as the Soul King.
It is important to note that Reio did not provide any form of resistance to the act of his restraining.
Despite the lack of resistance, the five individuals did not seem to trust his immense power and potential to destroy everything. This led them to commit the Original Sin of the Soul Society.
They decided to completely mutilate his body by cutting off both of his arms, gouging out his organs, ripping out his heart from his chest and leaving his mutilated body in the crystal. Again not showing any form of resistance, Reio accepted his fate and started the world as the progenitor, giving birth to all races and acting as the lynchpin of the three realms.
His power knows no bounds, as the individual discarded limbs of the Soul King gained sentience. The right hand of the Soul King came to be known as Mimihagi, the god who governs ‘Stillness’ and became a deity to the Soul Society. It also chose his host to be the captain Jushiro Ukitake.
Whereas, his left hand, unlike Mimihagi governed the concept of ‘Progress’ and came to be known as Pernida Parnkgjas, who decided to help Yhwach as one of the Sternritter, under the power of “C – The Compulsory”. The heart of the Soul King also decided to host itself in the body of Quincy Gerard Valkyrie, who in turn gains the power of “M – The Miracle”, also under the command of Yhwach.
However, the individual limbs of the Soul King are capable of powers akin to godhood.
In the present-day scenario, the Soul King still remains bound to the crystal, but the people who protect him now are the Squad Zero, consisting of the strongest captains to ever exist. The Soul King has remained the target of powerful beings to this day as both Aizen and Yhwach wanted to get rid of him, albeit for different reasons.
We know that Aizen wanted to “sit at the throne of heaven” while Yhwach wanted to put him out of his misery, of being used by the Shinigami since the beginning of time.
Yhwach also reveals himself to be the Soul King’s son.
Yhwach managed to deal with Squad Zero and stabbed the Soul King with his sword, but as his Almighty had predicted, it would actually be Ichigo who would deal the final blow by slashing the crystal with Yhwach’s sword.
This happened because the Quincy blood inside of Ichigo that came from his mother was under the control of Yhwach and his Quincy blood cannot tolerate the existence of the Soul King.
Yhwach then proceeds to absorb all the reishi leaking out of the Soul King which actually takes a toll on him as he collapses as the immeasurable amount of reishi cannot be handled that easily.
As he absorbed the immense amounts of reishi, black creatures with eyeballs popped out from him which was stated to be Reio’s power, which would not harm the Quincy and only attack the Shinigami.
This confirms that the Soul King did consider the Shinigami as his enemies as he was always being used by them.
This also confirms that Soul King Is The Real Quincy!
Ukitake sacrifices himself to Mimihagi to protect the Soul King from destruction but Yhwach absorbed its power as well which would initiate the ending of the world. He forcibly reshapes the entire Soul Palace realm by mixing the Wandenreich into his new kingdom known as “Wahrhelt”.
The left arm Pernida and heart Gerard Valkyrie of the Soul King also participated in the fight to raise Yhwach’s new empire, but after countless sacrifices and exhilarating battles, going as far as taking help from Aizen, Fullbringer Tsukishima, Ishida and his father, Ichigo came out victorious as the end.
The Squad Zero decided to use the corpse of Yhwach as the new Soul King so as to restore balance between the world.
The Soul King has lived a long life but had to face all kinds of criticism out of fear due to his immense power. He was used, manipulated and mutilated just so the world could live in a better way and became the king of the world that balances everything.
This basically makes the Shinigami his enemies as they committed the original sin. Although the other worlds flourished, he was still targeted by dangerous people with different ambitions but without a proper replacement, the three worlds would collapse and there would be utter chaos again.
Yhwach’s corpse was used as the new Soul King.
What do you think about Soul King? Do you think he actually cared about the people of the world being their creator? Why did he not show any form of resistance to being restrained?
Do let us know in the comments below about anything that we may have missed.