How to bring Asriel back
With the power of seven human souls, a monster can become godlike. However, for a soulless flower, the equivalent of seven human souls was also able to change Flowey back to who he once was – Asriel. But it may not be that simple.
A human soul is not enough
First, it’s important to get out of the way the misconception that a single human soul would be enough to bring back Asriel. If a single soul was enough for Asriel to come back, Flowey wouldn’t have become Photoshop Flowey. While Photoshop Flowey’s purpose was to regain total control of the timeline and toy with Frisk, Flowey truly wants something more than that.
Six human souls do not give him the compassion he was missing. They do not give him his old body back. Flowey only gains incredible power after absorbing six human souls. Eventually, the human souls fight back against Photoshop Flowey, in response to Frisk’s calling for their help. They save Frisk despite supposedly being under Photoshop Flowey’s control. This is why Flowey refuses to use them again after the first time.
Hee hee hee. Don’t worry.
I know there’s no REAL point in fighting you.
The human souls would probably just revolt again.
Monsters souls are needed
To achieve his “REAL FORM”, Flowey needs the equivalent of seven human souls. With god-like powers, Flowey is able to create his desired form – whether that be his child self or a new, more powerful one. However, unable to take Frisk’s soul, Flowey goes after the next best thing – the monsters’ souls.
It’s all because you MADE THEM love you.
All the time you spent listening to them…
Encouraging them… Caring about them…
Without that, they wouldn’t have come here.
It’s interesting that Flowey doesn’t go after the monsters until Frisk befriends them. However, there is something significant about this scene. Flowey captured six monsters.
This matches the number of human souls Flowey had stolen. Perhaps, the human souls are not able to revolt if they are matched with the same number of monster souls, and Flowey needed them within grabbing reach. There is also the possibility that with a greater number of souls, the less influence each soul has within the body.
Regardless of the exact reason, the human souls cannot revolt and Flowey achieves his “REAL FORM.” This turns out to be far more true than he may have realized. Once Frisk saves their friends, Frisk is able to reach out to Asriel and SAVE him.
It is thanks to Frisk and the monster souls that Asriel is able to feel again. This would not have been possible had Flowey not absorbed the monsters’ souls. Specifically, without the souls of Frisk’s friends.
As a flower, I was soulless.
I lacked the power to love other people.
However, with everyone’s souls inside me…
I not only have my own compassion back…
But I can feel every other monster’s as well.
They all care about each other so much.
And… they care about you too, Frisk.
I wish I could tell you how everyone feels about you.
Papyrus… Sans… Undyne… Alphys…
Monsters are weird.
Asriel explicitly states that it is the monsters’ compassion that he feels. The humans, strangely enough, are not included. It is the monsters’ love for each other and Frisk that allows him to regain his own compassion. However, then Asriel reveals the sad truth.
Maintaining his true form
I have to go now.
Without the power of everyone’s souls…
I can’t keep maintaining this form.
In a little while…
I’ll turn back into a flower.
Notice how Asriel says he needs “the power of everyone’s souls” to maintain this form. This could mean that Asriel requires a power equivalent to seven souls or he requires human souls and monster souls. More than likely, he needs both cases to be true.
The power of seven human souls is god-like. It would make sense that seven human souls, or an equivalent, could keep Flowey as Asriel. However, being a soulless flower, Flowey is missing the love, hope, and compassion monster souls have.
SNOWDIN LIBRARY BOOK:
Love, hope, compassion… This is what people say monster SOULs are made of.
But the absolute nature of “SOUL” is unknown.
After all, humans have proven their SOULs don’t need these things to exist.
While the Snowdin Library Book claims human souls can exist without compassion, it’s unlikely that all six human souls lack love and compassion. Defying Photoshop Flowey’s control, the human souls rebelled and saved Frisk – an act of compassion towards someone in need. Consider this with what Asriel says about feeling the monsters’ compassion rather than everyone’s. Being a flower infused with monster essence, Flowey may only be in tune with other monsters’ feelings.
At first, I used my powers for good.
I became “friends” with everyone.
I solved all their problems flawlessly.
This could also be a case of knowing the monsters. Flowey was created after the six humans had perished, with their determination. He never had a chance to know any of the humans. Frisk doesn’t know them either. On the other hand, Flowey had plenty of time to befriend the monsters. Even if Flowey was missing his compassion, there is no denying that he spent time getting to know these monsters. He even mentions how Papyrus is his favorite. He knows the monsters, so he can connect with their feelings when he has their souls inside of him. Of course, this is only after Frisk saves Asriel using a memory of his best friend, Chara.
To maintain his form and compassion, Asriel would need to keep all the souls he had absorbed – humans and monsters. But that isn’t something Asriel is willing to do.
Through the different instances of bodysharing, it’s clear that souls are still capable of will and desires, even after death. Chara took control of Asriel’s body and carried their own body to the village. The human souls fight back against Flowey and save Frisk. The monster souls have their own feelings and desires. Souls aren’t sources of power – they are still people. To keep the souls for himself would mean imprisoning them for as long as a god-like creature lives – possibly forever. This would go against Asriel’s character. It would be living at the expense of others. Asriel, who refused to kill the villagers at the cost of his life, is above taking others’ lives for his own.