|Franchise:||Kara no Kyoukai|
|Appears in:||Kara no Kyoukai|
|Voice actor:||Jōji Nakata|
Souren was a former Buddhist monk hailing from Tamil Buddhism who has lived for around 300 years. He witnessed endless death, and this gave him the twisted purpose of finding a reason for human death. He was excommunitcated by his master because he saw the origin of people.
He later entered the Mage's Association Clock Tower in London with Touko Aozaki and Cornelius Alba. Souren Araya attempted to reach Akasha by tracing the roots of the soul, something that is there but not there, in order to reach a group consciousness.
Personally interested in the Demon Hunter Organization families, he especially set his sights on Shiki Ryougi, with the intention of using his knowledge of her Origin of "Nothingness" as his last resort as a means of reaching the Origin.
During 1995, he encounters Lio Shirazumi with the initial intention of using whatever knowledge he could attain from his Origin, after prompting Lio to awaken his Origin of "Consumption". Having nearly driven Shiki to her death during the 1995-1996 murders, Araya stopped Lio from conducting his murders in order to prevent him from causing further problems for his plan. It is at this point that Araya deemed Lio to be a failure, resorting to using other powered individuals to divert Shiki's attention while keeping Lio at bay.
Araya later approached Fujino Asagami, and Kirie Fujou, pressing them to awaken their innate abilities. He planned Fujino and Kirie to fight against Shiki in hopes that they would be able to surpass Shiki's inner potential, but also in part so that the Counter Force would overlook his own operations by being distracted towards the conflict created between the three.
Ogawa Apartment ComplexEdit
In his attempt to reach the Akasha, he perform an experiment on an apartment complex in Kayamihama, Mifune City. He used Touko's architecture blueprint to create the Ogawa Apartment. The Ogawa Apartment is the embodiment of Taikyokuzu (Ying and Yang); he placed the Taikyokuzu within a Taikyokuzu. Lio lived in the apartment for some time. The apartment walls has been inscribed with strange patterns which caused people to go into depression leading them to become insane thus driving them to their deaths.
He collaborated with Cornelius and in return; he will help kill Touko. Cornelius was responsible for the system at the Ogawa apartment, where only the brains of residents were kept alive and connected to puppet bodies. The experiment involved controlling the brain that was still functioning and implant their the thought processes into the replica puppets. There were 50 households in the apartment complex but only 30 of the household are real; the Enjou family were one of the subjects of the experiments. Araya created the Apartment Complex to create a cyclical loop in which the puppet residents repeat their last day before death as a means to discover an access to the Spiral of Origin. To avoid the Counter Force, he placed a powerful bounded field "Hounouden Rokujyuyonshou" so the experiment wouldn't leak out and the Counter Force wouldn't notice it.
Tomoe Enjou was able to escape from the repetitive spiral, something that Araya didn't expect. Before Tomoe left, Araya supposedly implanted an unconscious imprinting in this puppet to have an interest in Shiki. He plans to retrace the path of the Spiral of Origin by using Shiki's Mystic Eyes of Death Perception. To do so, Araya plans to transplant his brain into Shiki's body.
Souren appears to be a man of around forty-five years old, but he has lived for hundreds of years. He has a face carved with grief and an unusually robust body for a magus, characteristics that exert immense pressure on his opponents to the point of seeming almost nauseating.
Araya is a tragic figure. Originally a wandering monk, his inability to save the lives of so many gave way to depression. His faith in humanity nearly crushed, he had decided to collect knowledge surrounding the finality of lives as a way of bringing some form of meaning or purpose to the endless cycle of "pointless" deaths around him. Despite his future goals stemming from this exact mentality and reasoning, over many years he would come to forget this, only finally recalling it before his death.
Having become a magus, he had fully internalized what is normally a common goal in magecraft: to locate the Spiral of Origin. Unlike standard magi, he had fully accepted this goal as his true calling, in which he intends to reach the Origin as a means of bringing about the destruction of reality and in doing so, the end of humanity. He believes that by bringing about the destruction of reality he will be able to govern its remnants, believing that it would allow him to view the records of every single individual human's life on Earth. By gaining this power and governance over reality, he wishes to pinpoint what he would consider to be the happiest moment (or at least the peak point) of every single human during their lifetime, with the intention of bringing a sense of contentment and finality in his mind. Araya literally described this goal as seeking "true wisdom within [himself]".
Despite seemingly always calm and collected, Araya was not above masking his own true emotions. He kept an image of indifference as a means of preventing his opponents from recognizing his moments of failure and weakness. He is often mentioned to have an imposing appearance; with Kirie viewing him as a man surrounded by a cold dark void, and with Fujino actually feeling fear towards his presence despite rarely ever doing so towards another person. Touko herself commented that he was "a man of hell". She also describes him as a man who's brash nature lends itself to making mistakes in his methodology yet his strong confidence is what allows him to surpass anyone else.
Whilst seemingly shown as acting out of genuine kindness based on his actions towards Lio, Fujino, and Kirie, these were done for his own self-benefit as Araya was only concerned with using others in order to further reach his goal.
The title of the work, Boundary of Emptiness (空の境界, Kara no Kyoukai?), reflects Araya's character role as he symbolizes the paradoxical spiral, that which divides the inside from the outside and the most important event in the story. He embodies the "accident of not knowing what is true and false", and the "accident of not learning the truth that has become common knowledge". Resulting from that, it is absolute that the paradox will persist until the very end.
Kara no KyoukaiEdit
Chapter 5: Paradox SpiralEdit
In November 1998, Tomoe brings Shiki to his apartment where he supposedly killed his parents. However Shiki revealed the true nature of the apartment to Tomoe and revealed the real corpses of his family. While they were in Tomoe's real apartment, they were attacked by reanimated corpses. Araya meets Shiki the second time when she kills all the reanimated corpses. Shiki had difficulties reading his death lines because of his Śarīra. Araya subdue Shiki by imprisoning her within a barrier isolated from space. He allowed Tomoe to escape because he knew it would be a matter of time for him to expire.
When Cornelius was knocked out by Touko, he intervened and faced Touko. Touko seemingly defeated Araya with her Projection Machine but Touko soon realized the Araya she defeated was a puppet. Touko was later incapacitated by the real Araya when he pulled out her heart from behind. However she did not die as Araya kept her in a frozen state: he decapitated her and stored her head in a jar. He didn't kill her because he knew that the next Touko would respawn when she dies. He destroyed Touko Projection machine by destroying her briefcase. He handed over Touko's head to Cornelius.
When Tomoe entered his workshop through the sewers and found his original brain, Araya reveals his true nature as a puppet. Araya claims that Tomoe's love for Shiki is merely fabricated and that he simply imprinted such a desire in Tomoe's mind. Araya taunts Tomoe to confront him where he'll be waiting at the 10th floor.
As Tomoe takes the elevator to confront Araya, he grabs Shiki's knife. Tomoe finds Araya standing before him. He confirms his determination to kill Araya for his sake and his parents' death, claiming that they weren't sinful enough to die in such a cruel way. He charges head-on but Araya uses his bounded field to stall him. Tomoe's limbs are slowly torn away as he manages to stab Araya in the chest. He is eventually killed by Araya's power, commanding Tomoe's body to cease existence. Araya found out that Alba died when he met the next Touko.
As Touko provided first aid for Mikaya, Araya asked Touko if she wanted to resume the fight but Touko claimed it was foolish to fight him again inside the building even if she has chance of winning with her Sealed Box. Araya thought Touko might rely on the Counter Force and told Touko about his barrier alienating it from the outside world. Touko laughs at Araya for his mistake to imprison Shiki within a barrier isolated from space rather than locking her physically. She revealed to Araya that Shiki cut down his barrier, which caused him to suffer pain from inside as the Ogawa Apartment is linked to his body. Due to Tomoe leaving behind Shiki's katana, Kanesada Kuji, inside the Ogawa Apartment's elevator, Shiki is able to easily break free upon finally gaining consciousness, and confront and outmatch Araya in battle. Araya realized that Shiki wasn't using her full potentional against Fujino Asagami.
Araya tried to crush her by collapsing the apartment complex, however Shiki reached Araya as he falls and stabs him. Before landing on the floor, he activated a Bounded field and coincidentally saved Shiki. Touko had a last conversation with Araya, Touko asked why he was obsessed with the Spiral of Origin. Araya revealed the reason behind his actions, Touko expresses that his downfall was caused by Tomoe's love for his family as well as his breaking out of the cycle created by Araya. Touko revealed that his name is the same thing he detests before he dies. Touko asked if he is going to continue seeking the Spiral of Origin but Araya revealed that he doesn't have a spare body and dies.
Chapter 6: Oblivion RecorderEdit
It was revealed by Satsuki Kurogiri that he was contacted by Araya to help awaken Shiki's forgotten memories.
Souren can considered an average magus at face value with only thirty Magic Circuits, not many compared to a first rate magus like Cornelius Alba. He can still be considered a genius with overwhelming power resulting from the anguish that he ceaselessly accumulated through the ages. He is highly skilled in the creation of Bounded Fields. The origin that he has is "Stillness".
He has a Śarīra, the sacred remains of devout Buddhist masters, embedded within his left arm. It belonged to an enlightened one who achieved "becoming extinguished, alive", so it has a resistance to the Mystic Eyes of Death Perception. The ability to kill it by slashing the lines of death would require Shiki to decipher "advanced lines of death" that are levels higher than the normal concept of death, so she is unable to view such vulnerable parts by looking upon it. They are still just bones in the physical sense, so they are susceptible to burning to ashes and the force of a large impact is able to destroy them even with their natural protection.
Despite being average as a magus, his talents relating to Bounded Field construction is exceptional. They are what divides that which is inside from the outside, so he must first complete himself to construct a complete world from his own body. He has no exceptional talents, but was able to become a first-class Bounded Field master by completing himself through the accumulation of ages and sheer determination. Normally something impossible, his accomplishments are like achieving the pinnacle within a field while being completely oblivious of even the name of this subject field.
He personally carries Rokudou Kyoukai (六道境界, ?), a three layered bounded field that completely surrounds his person and hides his presence. All those who enter the perimeter of the outer field are completely frozen in place in accordance with his origin of "Stillness", and as it is mobile, something normally impossible to accomplish, he can freely use it as a weapon. It is constantly crumbling with the passage of time, and it takes a length of time for Souren to recreate it. He calls the names Fugu (不倶, ?), Kongou (金剛, ?), Dakatsu (蛇蝎, ?), Taiten (戴天, ?), Chougyou (頂経, ?), and Ouken (王顕, ?) when he uses it.
He has also constructed Hounouden Rokujyuyonshou (奉納殿六十四層, The 64 Layers of the Hounou Temple?), a bounded field that completely surrounds his workshop, Ogawa Apartment. The original architect was Touko Aozaki, and it is a shrine for the Taikyokuzu, the diagram of the supreme ultimate. The building can be called the embodiment of his internal world, very similar to the concept of a Reality Marble, which gives him complete control over its internal workings. He has the ability to teleport though walls, send projections of his mind to different locations, and it also allow for regeneration after he is sliced by Shiki.
The building is a red, round, and symmetrical ten story building with five rooms on each side. It is used for Souren's experiments to find the meaning of death by watching the lives of the sixty-four families that take residence there. All of the collected families have life issues, including the family of Tomoe Enjou, and he drove them to suicide and murder with designs on the walls and floors. Afterward, he removed their brains and created identical puppet bodies for them to control. He began using them to create a “miniature world that concludes in a day”, where he would have all of the puppets act out their daily lives, with each day concluding by having them kill each other.
Souren, hoping for their deaths to deviate from the previous days, revived the bodies by morning, where they would simply restart with the memories of the final day of their lives. The puppets live on one side, and the other side, hidden by a rotating elevator, is used to store their original corpses. He manages to hide the massive experiment, which would normally cause suspicions from even the smallest irregularity and the trail of information in modern society, by making it out to be a normal apartment. The purpose is to have the building form a taiji, a graphical representation of the Yin-Yang theory, and along with Shiki, another Taiji placed inside the Taiji of the building, he wishes to reach the root with it.
Taiji is a philosophy that originated in ancient China that attempts to capture the essence of everything on a conceptual level. Those that are active are defined as Yang, white, and the opposite are defined as Yin, black. It symbolizes opposing concepts such as day and night, light and darkness, and male and female. At the same time, it can also be called a condensed version of the ever-changing, dynamic World. There are also the dot of Yin in Yang and the dot of of Yang in Yin, indicating that the distinction between Yin and Yang is not absolute, that there is darkness even in light. Taiji is the "one" at the beginning, and the Yin and Yang that divide the "one" are called Liangyi, Ryougi.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3
Souren Araya (Character)
A man looks to be about 45 years old. Magus.
A face carved with grief, a robust body unusual for a magus. These characteristics exert immense pressure on his opponents that seems almost nauseating.
Although Araya is average as a magus, his talents relating to Bound Field construction is exceptional.
A bound field divides what is inside from the outside. In order to construct a complete world from his own body, first Araya must complete himself.
Araya, who has no exceptional talents, is able to become a first-class bound field master by completing himself through the accumulation of ages and sheer determination.
That which divides the inside from the outside, Kara no Kyoukai is his story.
Araya symbolizes the paradoxical spiral, the most important event in this tale.
Talking about the impossible, what Araya accomplished is like achieving the pinnacle within a field while being completely oblivious of even the name of this subject field.
Araya embodies the "accident of not knowing what is true and false", and the "accident of not learning the truth that has become common knowledge". As a result, it is absolute that the paradox will persist until the very end.
Kara no Kyoukai Shi (Others)
The publication of Kara no Kyoukai on the homepage in 1998.
The title Kara no Kyoukai (Boundary of Emptiness), reflected the character Araya Souren.
As a result, the story on the homepage finished at Paradox Spiral.
The story of Kara no Kyoukai already ended at Paradox Spiral.
The subsequent two chapters were the epilogue of the story between Ryougi Shiki and Kokuto Mikiya. They were released in summer 1999 as copy-shi (a kind of doujinshi).
Magic Circuits (Others)
The pseudo-nerves existing in the body of a magus.
They are the paths that convert life force into prana, as well as the paths which connect to the foundations underlying Grand Rituals.
The number of Magic Circuits is determined at birth. Mage lineages will resort to any means to alter themselves in hope of giving their descendants just one more Circuit.
This is why magi from older lineages are more powerful.
In terms of the number of Magic Circuits, and the quality of the lineage, Cornelius Alba is undoubtedly a first rate magus.
In fact, neither Aozaki Touko nor Araya Souren have many Magic Circuits. Touko has about 20, Araya about 30.
Still, the two are considered geniuses: Touko has talents that are independent of her lineage. Araya's overwhelming power is probably a result of the anguish that he ceaselessly accumulated through the ages.
- ↑ TYPE-MOON Fes. booklet - Since Saber and Gilgamesh have physical bodies in Fate/Stay Night, can Shiki see lines on them? (@LestatDusk)
Nasu: Not just when they have a physical body, the Mystic Eyes of Death Perception are effective even when they're in spiritual bodies. For Shiki [Ryougi], if the opponent can be recognized as "living" (not "life", but "live"), she can see the lines of death. For example, the ghosts in Overlooking View were dead, but they were "living" in the sense that they can interfere with the current world.
Also, why she didn't succeed against the Sarira in Araya's arm is because it belonged to an enlightened one who achieved "becoming extinguished, alive." To kill it by the lines of death means she has to decipher advanced "lines of death" levels higher than the normal concept of death. But what's sad about bones is that rather than having to do that, they'll turn into ash if you burn them. If you have time to be using Death spells, level up and beat it physically.
- ↑ "---- Juvenile. This left hand has a Buddhism relic buried within. Even with Mystic Eyes of Death Perception, you cannot perceive the parts vulnerable to death. Mere severing will not harm me." 「―――未熟。この左手には仏舎利を埋め込んである。いかな直死の魔眼を用いても、死に易い部分など視えま い。単純に断ち切っただけでは、荒耶は傷つかない」
Ogawa Apartment (Location) The stage of Paradox Spiral. A ten-story apartment with a complex structure. The designer was Aozaki Touko. A temple of Taiji. It could be called the artificial manifestation of the inner landscape of Araya Souren, who did not have a Reality Marble. The name of the Boundary Field here was Hounouden Rokujyuyonshou ("The 64 Layers of the Hounou Temple").
A philosophy originated in ancient China, a graphical representation of the Yin-Yang theory.
It attempts to capture the essence of everything on a conceptual level: those that are active are defined as Yang (white), and the opposite are defined as Yin (black).
The Taiji symbolizes opposing concepts such as day and night, light and darkness, male and female. At the same time, you may also call it a condensed version of the ever-changing, dynamic World.
Furthermore, there is a dot of Yin in Yang, and conversely a dot of Yang in Yin. This indicates that the distinction between Yin and Yang is not absolute. There is darkness even in light.
Taiji is the "one" at the beginning, the Yin and Yang that divide the "one" are called Liangyi (Ryougi).
As an aside, the magi in this story were all practitioners of Western magecraft who were incompatible with Chinese philosophies.
|Azaka Kokutou • Cornelius Alba • Daisuke Akimi • Fujino Asagami • Hideo Hayama • Kaede Enjou • Kaori Tachibana • Keita Minato • Kirie Fujou • Lio Shirazumi • Mana Ryougi • Mikiya Kokutou • Misaya Ouji • Mitsuru Kamekura • Otoko Hotaruzuka • Satsuki Kurogiri • Shiki Ryougi • Shizune Seo • Souren Araya • Takayuki Enjou • Tomoe Enjou • Touko Aozaki|