Where Did the Concept of Sailor Moon’s Star Seeds Come From?

A Star Seed... maybe?

A Star Seed… maybe?

I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that the world of Sailor Moon must be a tough one to live in.

After all, on any given day you could just be waltzing along, minding your own business, when all of a sudden some jerk comes along and saps your life force energy, snatches your Pure Heart Crystal, removes your Dream Mirror, or tears away your Star Seed. And if your name is Naru, it’s pretty much guaranteed that every single one of these will happen to you. Poor thing.

But out of all of these enemy-luring plot devices, the idea behind the Star Seeds always seemed the most confusing to me, especially as they relate to the general “citizenry” of the Sailor Moon universe. So, in an attempt to try to make some more sense of the whole thing, I decided to do some research into what a Star Seed actually is.

Join me as we take a trip back to the 1970s, and explore some New Age religions in an attempt to unravel what Star Seeds are, and how they tie into Sailor Moon. Sit tight, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride!

Sailor Uranus and Neptune giving surrendering their Star Seeds to Galaxia

Sailor Uranus and Neptune giving surrendering their Star Seeds to Galaxia

While I could probably drone on for awhile about what it is about the Star Seeds that just don’t sit right with me, I think my biggest gripe is the fact that everyone has one. I get that Sailor Crystals1 and Star Seeds are supposed to be essentially the same thing, but the rules on how they operate are completely different.

And don’t get me started on the whole weirdness introduced in the anime of why having your Star Seed removed turns you into a Sailor monster. That doesn’t even begin to make sense, even in the context of the Sailor Moon universe.

So, as I’m wont to do, I decided it was about time that I take a look into whole Star Seed concept to see if anyone far wiser than myself had decided to tackle the issue. What I found, however, was far more surprising:

Apparently Naoko didn’t make up the concept of Star Seeds.

That honor goes to author Brad Steiger,2 and his 1976 book Gods of Aquarius. Long time readers might be tipped off to other possible Sailor Moon connections with the Aquarius reference.

In his book, Mr. Steiger argued that:3

[C]ertain people originated as extraterrestrials and arrived on Earth through birth or as a walk-in to an existing human body.

These extraterrestrials-turn-human living among us are known as “Star People,” though alternatively referred to as “Star Seeds” or “Indigo Children.”

What’s most interesting about this concept — especially in context of applying it to Sailor Moon — is the idea of an extraterrestrial becoming a human through birth, i.e., being reborn on the Earth. To provide a little more background on this concept:4

Star Seeds are beings that have experienced life elsewhere in the Universe on other planets and in non-physical dimensions other than on Earth. Star Seeds may also have had previous life times on earth.

So there isn’t an exact 1:1 relationship between a person and a Star Seed, but rather a Star Seed is essentially the “soul” of sorts that is continuously reborn throughout the universe, and in certain cases on Earth.

Galaxia plays for keeps

Galaxia plays for keeps

Unlike what we see in Sailor Moon, according to the belief, not all humans are Star Seeds — in fact, only a small portion of the population actually are. Rather, Star Seeds (essentially, the spirits of beings from other worlds or dimensions) are drawn to the Earth and humanity in order to develop spiritually, as well as out of a desire to save humanity.5

The motivations for all Star Seeds to come to Earth are to help and serve mankind as well as planet Earth. These beings very often have gifts to share with others such as in the areas of healing, channeling and spiritual education. There is a strong desire in Star Seeds to help others and usually there is a plan made prior to birth as to how this may be manifested and expressed when they become a human being.

Are you thinking what I’m thinking?6 Because the more I read about this, the more I start to suspect that Ms. Takeuchi took the basic concept behind the “Star Seed” belief and applied it to Sailor Crystals, all the while adding in her own magical storytelling touch, of course.

Space aliens reborn on the Earth? Check. A strong desire to do good for humanity? Yup. Possessing special powers? Sounds about right. Reborn over and over again? Oh yeah.

While I’m by no means an expert on this system of beliefs, I think we can somewhat safely say that Ms. Takeuchi at least referred to the idea when putting together the Sailor Stars story arc. What’s most interesting to me, though, is the inclusion of everyone possessing a Star Seed and then using the actual Star Seed concept for the Sailor Crystals.

Usagi remaining compassionate in the face of losing so much

Usagi remaining compassionate in the face of losing so much

Though I can’t really say whether knowing about the inspiration that led to the Star Seeds as they appear in Sailor Moon makes them make any more sense, I can say that it definitely does give me a lot to think about, especially with regards to the Sailor Crystals and how many other Sailors there may be living on Earth, yet to be discovered.

But that’s just me. What do you think about all of this? An interesting insight into how Sailor Moon came together, or yet just another “cool-sounding” name borrowed for use in the series? Let me know your thoughts about this! And if you have any similar connections to Pure Heart Crystals and Dream Mirrors, I’d love to hear about them!

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  1. Which I will also be using to refer to the anime’s “True Star Seeds”
  2.  See Brad Steiger (Wikipedia)
  3.  See Star People (New Age Belief) (Wikipedia)
  4. See What Is a Star Seed?
  5. See What Is a Star Seed?
  6. Pinky?

17 thoughts on “Where Did the Concept of Sailor Moon’s Star Seeds Come From?

  1. Hey, I had heard of the New Age origin of star seeds a while back and had been meaning to leave a comment about it in that article about paranormal elements Takeuchi included in the second arc, but it kept slipping my mind. Great to see a more comprehensive look at the whole star seed idea!

    • Always happy to get ideas for future articles or hear other theories about the series, so if anything else comes to mind, please do comment! =D

  2. Given that Naoko was also big into astronomy, I wonder how much ‘we are all star stuff’ may have played into the concept of star seeds/sailor crystals. The general concept, that all the atoms in our bodies come from space/stars, works well with the idea of star seeds. Sort of works with the idea of the Galaxy Cauldron as well. Every atom in our body will eventually return to space.

    • I’d say that definitely must have played a big role the end of the story. I mean, everything is based around space and stars anyway, so I guess it’s the natural conclusion that we’re all the products of stars!

  3. The fact that people in the Sailor Moon story have all these things in them is a bit much. Energy? Sure. But crystals, mirrors and star seeds? Where do these objects go? Maybe they are just energy (and dreams) materialized as something tangible I guess.

    • I’ve seen some people make somewhat compelling arguments that these (Heart Crystals, Dream Mirrors, and Star Seeds) are all essentially the same thing, and that different enemies summon or “draw out” the energy from humans in a different manner, but I’m not entirely sold on that theory…

      • That is an interesting concept! What makes you not sold on it?

        Also, I would say that the star seed thing does jive a lot more with the original New Age definition in the manga XD. (And is just a lot clearer as its own concept really…)

        Since it’s been too long since my last rewatch, I went looking into the Phage hoping maybe to find the civilians as one step away from “spiritual guide” types (I was thinking maybe doctors or something like that) but NOPE just another bunch of idols basically XD. Oh well…

        Why their star seeds first come out shining and then turn dull is another part of the mystery, too I think…

      • Yeah, I don’t agree with that. They’re certainly all similar things, they’re aspects of someone’s personality (how virtuous and pure hearted they are, what their dreams and goals are, and um… I guess their hobby/occupation) and they manifest as physical objects that can be examined or used. But they’re not the same thing.

  4. I’d say:
    Energy is self explanatory. The enemies are draining out life force. Too much lost = extreme weakness and even death.

    Pure Hearts:
    The manga version was “hosts” or “souls” I believe.
    Everyone has one of these. I have no problem with that. It’s similar to religious concepts of us being spiritual beings in mortal bodies. The hosts are something the Daimons/Demons can attach themselves to, a possession of sorts.
    As hearts, they are representations of a persons being. But possibly they are more representative of what lies within our hearts in the anime.
    Totally different than just energy, which animals and even plants have in the series.

    Dream Mirrors:
    These are a person’s desires manifested in physical form. I sort of believe they take this for due to the way they are extracted, but who knows. Why is it a mirror? Maybe something to do with how we see them in ourselves, maybe? Most likely used just to parallel Nehelenia’s mirror.
    Totally different than a heart or energy.

    Star Seeds:
    These seem to be most closely related to the Heart Crystals, or a person’s soul. They are confusing to me, too.
    Maybe it’s that within each of us a seed from the Galaxy Cauldron exists? Our life in general?
    Maybe they represent potential to become something more but sadly most of us don’t have what it takes or just become a parody of a sailor. (That’s depressing).
    Maybe more answers lie within the name of the MODs of Stars. Phage means “to eat”, right?
    A bacteriophage duplicates/replicates. Maybe that has some significance.

  5. I’ve been doing a deep dive in to spirituality lately, and Sailor Moon immediately came to mind.

    Many people believe cats are spiritually sensitive and can see energy, which would explain Luna and Artemis and their role in finding the star seeds (sailor senshi) on Earth.

    I also thought of the scene where they teleport to the moon, which reminded me of astral projection, though with AP your body remains where it is.

    The general significance of crystals, as they are supposed to represent a higher frequency/dimension.

    And finally, the idea of Serena/Sailor Moon ushering in the Neo Silver Millennium/Crystal Tokyo. According to spirituality, this realm represents the 5th dimension and is supposed to be where humans will live after we ascend. The ascension is happening now. The timing on the show and in real life matches up and I don’t think it is a coincidence.

  6. I seriously cannot believe this!! I just had my spiritual awakening a few months ago and I watched sailor moon before this and I started thinking about it it all seems so obvious and I literally searched everywhere and couldn’t find anyone talking about it I thought I was crazy but I saw ur article and I’m like wtf that’s literally what was in my head thank you so much for sharing!!

  7. I seriously cannot believe this!i just got into spiritual stuff and I watched the show way before and it came up to me and I was putting things together in my head and searched about it everywhere couldn’t find anyone talking about it and I thought I was crazy but when I saw this I was like wtf that’s literally what was going on in my head thank you so much for sharing!!

  8. So great to read all these responses, and others seeing these connections! I also have been thinking about Sailor Moon and spirituality and the ascention on earth recently. All the themes here – Starseeds, crystals, roses, sisterhood, compassion, ancient wisdom, past lives, moon lore… these are so relevant in this particular form of spirituality mentioned, and more than ever at the moment. I wonder what Naoko Takeuchis experience of all this was, she seems to have channeled something that resonates in the hearts of many people…

    • Also, just to note, Japanese culture does generally seem to have a more intergrated understanding of concepts of Ki (energy, life force) in their world view, more so than in the west, where there is a more ‘mechanical’ or rational/reductionist understanding, at least for the last few centuries, at least since the long and gradual colonisation and corrosion of traditional nature based spiritual practices.

      Studying any of the eastern arts, such as traditional healing forms, Ki Gong, Accupuncture, Martial arts, herbal medicine, etc, one might feel that these concepts we see in SM feel quite familiar 🙂

      Also looking at the religous/spiritual history in Asia, you can see threads of Buddhism (rebirth, compassion, mindfulness, development of the heart) popping up in SM. I would agree with you about the Christian themes too, but I would see them as more Christian Mysticism… It would be interesting to hear more about Shintoism too, if anyone here sees any interesting parallels!

      Thank for you the interesting article!

  9. everyone possesses the capacity to manifest pure good, not everyone will wake up to this knowledge or understand the responsibility of their free will

  10. There’s a lot in Sailor Moon that’ll give you a headache if you think about it too much. Naoko would stick together a lot of intriguing ideas that really start to fall apart upon closer analysis. but they still SOUND cool.

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