BLEACH: Why the Soul Society's Timeline is Messed Up

BLEACH: Why the Soul Society's Timeline is Messed Up

BLEACH: Why the Soul Society's Timeline is Messed Up

I want to discuss a very complex topic about Bleach that overlaps with many other points! Even Kubo himself finds it difficult to explain. The issue is whether souls existed in the Seireitei and Soul Society simultaneously! Because frankly, the most significant narrative dilemma found in Bleach's story is "time" in general. There are a lot of questions about the Shinigami's age, and I'll tell you why. According to the novel's King of Souls tale, there was only one world before the creation of the three worlds! In this actual world, there might have been humans and souls.

The five noble families' forefathers were the dominant inhabitants of that world. They were so mighty that they could persuade the King of Souls to split up the original world and create new worlds, each with a distinct perspective on how the world should be.

According to the Soul King's Story, culture and society were present in the actual world. Members of noble families possessed an exalted status! The Soul King divided the real world into three new worlds, the Soul Society, the Human world, and Hueco Mundo. No date is given for the creation of the Soul Society.

There was a scene in the series where Rukia described how Ichigo had altered the Soul Society, which had adhered to the same doctrines for a million years! Using Rukia's estimation, we can deduce that the original world existed a million years ago! Then afterward split into 3 worlds. The Soul Society is the realm of the dead and spirits, where the forefathers of the noble families resided. Humanity lived in the real world, and hollows lived in the Hueco Mundo.

Again, how old is the Soul Society?

bleach thousand year old blood war

So here is the question? Did the civilization the forefathers lived in transfer to the soul society after it was formed? Or did all worlds start from scratch like primitive life? 

According to Kubo, he put this massive amount of information in Bleach, which runs contrary to the human experience. That said, Bleach is not entirely about humans; it's about souls and Shinigami. Even so, souls are connected to humans in some way. Because Rukia says that Soul Society existed for one million years, is it possible that the Human world also existed for the same time? Did humans before the worlds split have intelligence? Or did the forefathers of illustrious clans wipe out the memories of humanity? It seems inconsistent that humans existed for a million years in Bleach's storyline. Even if that is the case, I would like to know the basis for Kubo's choice to use this number or if Kubo was inspired by Buddhist beliefs.

Let me clarify this issue by focusing on the Soul Society itself! My thoughts immediately jump to the later generations that led noble families, particularly the Kuchiki and Shihoin clans. For example, Byakuya, head of the Kuchiki family, is the 28th successor to his family. Yoshiro, Yoruichi's brother, was the 23rd head of the Shihoin clan.

According to Kubo's story, 28 Kuchikis in the Soul Society governed for a million years. How is this possible when the forefathers of the noble families were still living in the original world when life began a million years ago? According to Kubo at Club Outside, the Noble Clan history is representative of the Soul Society, not the Seireitei.

Based on Kubo's answer, the forefathers lived in the original world and then lived in the Soul Society for a certain period, during which they murdered the King of Souls and established strict laws, then moved on to the Seireitei in the Soul Society, where subsequent generations lived. To put it another way, the Seireitei may have been where the forefathers' descendants resided since the Soul Society's inception as an idea or a piece of land.

Soul Society vs Seireitei

So that if you compare Seireitei with the rest of the other areas in the Soul Society, you can see that it is the only place that shows signs of luxury and urbanization in contrast to the rest of the regions of the Rukongai.

As mentioned in the manga, some areas don't even have shoes to wear. Seireitei is described as a place where the Shinigami live, but the most accurate definition is where pure souls live. And precisely the noble families, the five great families that preside over the rest. Bearing in mind that the main branch of the Shiba family has long lived outside the Seireitei. 

Briefly, to summarize to you my general idea on this subject, I can say, the forefathers, after they decided to divide the original world into three worlds, chose to remain in the realm of the dead, that is, the Soul Society, so that they can control several things, the most important of which is the flow of human souls from the living world. 

It may be that the forefathers somehow manipulated the humans in the original world. For example, possibly erasing human memory so that humanity could start over. But, at the same time, they kept the civilization they had in the original world to themselves, then built the foundation in the form of a small city that began to evolve with time until it took its current form, which we know as "Seireitei." 

One Million Years vs a Few Thousand

yamamoto bleach

The notion that Shinigami clean souls, wear specific clothes, and behave in certain ways was created by Yamamoto in the Gotei 13 a few thousand years back. You can see a discrepancy in the timeline of events here, right? In the Bleach series, how can the history of the Soul Society be condensed into a few thousand years?

The main issue with Kubo's storytelling was how he handled the timeline! Since we know the history of the Shinigami is a million years old but limited to a few thousand, I believe the time skips were a mistake. What are your thoughts on this? Do you have any ideas on how to fix these plot holes?


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