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Is there some sort of flowchart for souls in the BLEACH world? The basic bit is humans die, turn into ghosts, then either are transported by Shinigami/soul reapers to Soul Society or go mad and turn into Hollows.

What happens when people in Soul Society die (or are killed), or when Hollows are slain by Shinigami? Supposedly there's a cycle between the real world and Soul Society, how do they return "naturally"? Where does Hell enter into it? Is there a dual of Hell or is that Soul Society?

  • When hollows are slain by Shinigami they are actually "cleansed". After that they can be reincarnated. The eventual cycle is reincarnation in Bleach. See: bleach.wikia.com/wiki/Soul_Society – Gorchestopher H Jun 27 '12 at 12:06
  • The Zanpakuto can wash away the sins of someone who only committed unforgiveable sin as a hollow. So not al hollows go to hell. – user16759 Aug 18 '13 at 6:09
  • Welcome to the site. While this is useful information, it does not address the crux of the question - how do the souls cycle between the living and soul society? – phantom42 Aug 18 '13 at 14:43
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Here is a simplified flow chart for the soul migrations between the Soul Society and the Human World. One of the few conundrums of the anime is there is no mention of whether souls that enter Hell actually ever get to leave and return to the soul migration path. It could be that new souls are just formed out of reishi as they are "born" into the Soul Society, allowing for an ever-increasing number of souls overall. Since souls that become hollows are removed from the pool until the hollow is killed and purified, new souls must come from somewhere. Souls can live in the Rukon District or the Soul Society upwards of two thousand years, but considering the number of dangerous events that occur in the Soul Society, their spiritual lifespans tend to be much shorter.

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When Shinigami die, they return back to Earth and reincarnate here. When they die here, they go back to the soul society.

This cycle continues till the souls become tired of this cycle, and they get lost in the valley of screams, where their memories are removed from their soul bodies. I'm not sure, but I think from this new souls are created. This was explained in the movie Bleach: Memories of Nobody.

As to how souls get to the soul world, my impression from season 2 is, that they just make their way their naturally using one of the many walkways, and randomly land in one of the districts. The process seems haphazard, as people land anywhere, & then spend their time trying to find their relatives, which they rarely do.

As for hell, I think the Manga author muddled it a little. In season 1, hell is reserved for very evil souls, like the serial killer. In the bleach movie part 4, the main villain had only killed those who killed his sister, but is still sent to hell. This seems like a plot hole, as many people in Soul society, like Aizen, are a lot more evil than anyone in hell.

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  • One note is that when hollows are "slain" they are cleansed, and that when there is a significantly "evil" shinigami or hollow they are executed via Soukyoku or burial in the soul pit. – Gorchestopher H Jun 27 '12 at 14:44
  • no, the villian was a serial killer, killing the little sisters of older brothers. As for plot hole, Aizen is a shinigami, that probably turned evil after becoming a shinigami. – Blue Jun 27 '12 at 15:45
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What happens when people in Soul Society die (or are killed), or when Hollows are slain by Shinigami?

I'm not a 100% sure but when Shinigami's die, I think they just die, they cease to exist. When Hollows die by a shinigami, they become purified and go to Soul Society. Unless they were very evil and wicked, in which case the go to hell.

Supposedly there's a cycle between the real world and Soul Society, how do they return "naturally"? I don't think there is a cycle, there wasn't anything in the Anime that I remember that talks about a cycle between death and life.

Where does Hell enter into it? Is there a dual of Hell or is that Soul Society? Hell is only for the people that do henious crimes. Like mass murder. Hell is reserved for the worst of people(hollows). The one slain can only enter hell if he was a hollow and he was very bad in life.

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