Rev. Daijaku Kinst in Credits for Pixar’s “Soul”

Gesshin Claire Greenwood  |  January 6, 2021

Soul, released this month by Pixar, is a movie about the afterlife and what gives human beings purpose. The film’s protagonist, Mr. G., is a jazz musician who teaches high school music. After meeting an untimely death, he finds himself in the “Great Before,” a sort of intermediary place between life and death where new souls are trained to find their “spark,” or life’s purpose. Soul has clear Buddhist references, including the main message of the movie which stresses the importance of awareness. Mr. G and the audience both come to appreciate the importance of enjoying mundane, daily things like food, nature, and relationships rather than constantly striving for material success.

Institute of Buddhist Studies’ own Rev. Daijaku Kinst was consulted by Pixar for this movie. You can see her name in the credits under “Cultural, Music and Faith Based Advisors.” According to Kinst, Pixar wanted to know the Buddhist view on reincarnation and the afterlife. “They’re really humble,” she said of the experience. “They really want to listen to people. They want to be respectful and inclusive.”

Check out the movie today!