"Break the bones and the body will heal. Break the spirit and the body will die..."— Anonymous(src)
Souls, also called Spirits, are the immortal, incorporeal forms or inner-selves of sapient beings.
"One should never doubt the raw potential of a soul. Especially not after seeing one of these wraiths."— Adria(src)
Souls carry energy within them that is released if they are shattered. Souls may be stored in objects, and can be split apart. Human souls can be used to empower objects through certain means. Part of a soul may be torn away from its greater whole, leaving the victim still alive. Essence can be extracted from souls.
Through resurrection, a soul may be returned to the body of the deceased, but must be performed at the deceased's body. Additionally, Necromancers may summon spirits to inhabit bodies. Undead may exist without a soul.
Angels, in theory, have some kind of essence that would allow absorption by the Black Soulstone in a manner similar to demons. Each angel is a manifestation of Anu's power. A deceased angel is effectively reborn through the Crystal Arch as a manifestation of this power, but the reborn angel is a different individual from the one preceding it.
The only two (known) angels to ever break that pattern are Izual and Tyrael. Izual's spirit was bound to a creature of the Black Abyss, and he took on demonic traits, including the ability to be reborn in Hell. No replacement for Izual came from the Arch. Tyrael was able to regain physical form after his destruction at Mount Arreat and return to Heaven on his own accord, an event that was without precedent.
When angels die, sometimes a burst of light (in rare cases it is of humanoid form), can be seen being released from their broken bodies.
"There are many ways, my son, to find where the souls of Demons remain...But it takes only one second of despair and of doubt until at last, your soul, they will gain..."— The Initiate (excerpt)(src)
"Within the breast of every human on Sanctuary lies a mote of pure darkness, proof of the breed’s demonic parentage. I suspect there may be a way to draw out that evil and contain it. Of course, the process is fatal, but I propose death is infinitely preferable to the life of doubt, rage, and confusion this darkness engenders."— The Arma Mortis (excerpt)(src)
According to Adria, when a human dies "before they are ready," their soul, strong or weak, will try to cling to the mortal realm. Devoid of concious thought, their continued existence is a scream of denial. They care for nothing for their own lingering rage. Some angry spirits will cling to any corpse that has its muscles and sinew intact, puppeteering them in a macabre imitation of life.
Zakarum states that the souls of virtuous humans are rewarded in Heaven while the souls of the wicked sinners are punished in the Burning Hells, though Deckard Cain noted there was little evidence for this belief. He believed that human souls passed on to an unknown location, beyond the reach of Heaven or Hell. That said, the souls of the most ruthless, hate-filled and aggressive soldiers of mortal wars often come to reside in Hell, residing in fires of eternal punishment. The Umbaru believe that the souls of the departed enter the Unformed Land and become spirits. The Priests of Rathma believe that when one dies, their soul passes to the next plane of existence, where they will carry out a role in maintaining the Balance. Malthael found that by following the 'sound' of human souls, he discovered that they had come to reside in the Pandemonium Fortress (or perhaps more specifically, the former resting place of the Worldstone. The souls in the fortress were later bound there and used to amplify his power, before the Nephalem defeated him, apparently allowing the souls to move on.
Human souls are malleable. Both the light and darkness that is found within can be used to empower weapons. Parts of a human soul can be torn away, while the greater whole of the soul remains intact. This soul can be 'mended' by taking from the souls of others. Succubi have the ability to extract human souls and take them to Hell. Some human souls are said to be stronger than others. Very rarely, perhaps twice every ten millennia, there is a human soul so full of life that death cannot claim it. If the human perishes, they return to walk the world of the living. This is not the same thing as undeath. Only two individuals are known to have this gift (or curse), one of them being Siggard.
- ↑ Diablo III, Soulsmasher
- ↑ Diablo III, The Wailing Host
- ↑ Diablo III, Maghda's Tormented Soul
- ↑ Diablo III, Torn Soul
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Diablo III, Arma Mortis
- ↑ Diablo II Manual
- ↑ Rise of the Necromancer, Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed on 2017-06-30
- ↑ Diablo I, Resurrect
- ↑ Summoning Spells, The Arreat Summit. Accessed on 2014-06-16
- ↑ Diablo III, Act V
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 11.2 Book of Tyrael
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 Storm of Light
- ↑ Diablo II, The Harrowing
- ↑ Diablo III, Izual's Descent
- ↑ Diablo III, Act IV
- ↑ Diablo III, Enraged Phantasm Lore
- ↑ 17.0 17.1 Book of Cain
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 Book of Adria: A Diablo Bestiary
- ↑ To Hell and Back
- ↑ Diablo III, Visage of Giyua
- ↑ Diablo III, Zunimassa's Vision
- ↑ Legacy of Blood
- ↑ Diablo III, The Path of Wisdom
- ↑ Diablo III, Act V, Angel of Death
- ↑ Moon of the Spider
- ↑ The Awakening
- ↑ Demonsbane
- ↑ Diablo III, Act I
- ↑ Wraith, The Arreat Summit. Accessed on 2014-06-15
- ↑ Diablo III, Belt of Transcendence
- ↑ Diablo III, Primordial Soul