Theory and Analysis:Yui's Agenda
"Miss Misato, please don't go out like that. It's embarrassing."
One of the murkiest aspects of NGE is Yui's motives. Was it really just an accident that she provided the soul for Eva-01? If she did it on purpose, why? Why would she want Shinji to be present during a risky contact experiment. What were her plans for Third Impact? Does her occasional violent behavior after becoming an Eva indicate at least some degree of mental illness on her part? Did she plan all along to go into exile in outer space? The evidence presented in the series answers some but not all of these questions.
Yui's Contact Experiment
Yui's Conversation with Fuyutsuki
The evidence is that Yui did, in fact, deliberately choose to become Eva-01's soul.
The chief piece of evidence as to why comes in Episode 21 in this conversation:
Episode 21 - Yui/Fuyutsuki under a tree with baby Shinji
[telop:_ 2003 AD]
[telop:_ Hakone - Lake Ashinoko levee]
Fuyutsuki: The same weather day after day... The disappearance of autumn from this country is sad beyond words._ According to the scenario in Seele's Secret Dead Sea Scrolls, Third Impact will definitely occur in a little over ten years.
Yui: Seele and Gehirn - organizations for preventing the final tragedy.
Fuyutsuki: I support your intentions - Not Seele's.
Note: Yui's intentions are different than Seele's, and Fuyutsuki is aware of this. Also remember that according to the Classified Information, Yui is the daughter of a Seele member and accordingly in a position to understand their plans.
Yui: Professor Fuyutsuki, it would be terribly dangerous to break that seal onto the world.
Fuyutsuki: I've given all the materials to Ikari._ It's not something one can do alone._ (pause)
(cont'd) _There won't be a repeat performance of the stunt I pulled earlier. oh, and I've also been given a warning - It seems that it would be no trouble at all for them to erase me.
Fuyutsuki's life had been threatened by Seele because of these actions.
Yui: And those who survived as well. It's easy to exterminate people.
Fuyutsuki: Still, that's no reason for you to become a test subject.
Here we get to the crux of the matter. Yui's life was in danger as well, and this had lead her to conduct the Contact Experiment herself.
Yui: All things happen as they must. That is why I am with Seele - for Shinji's sake...
|The Hakone Conversation|
This explains one of the aspects of Yui's contact experiment that has puzzled many people: why did the contact experiment take place so soon? Eva-01 was incomplete and was, in fact, still attached to Lilith.
Yui needed to take action soon because she was in fear for her life. Seele had found out that she opposed their agenda and was working against it. Thus she didn't have time to wait for Eva-01 to be completed. Her situation must have been even more dire than this conversation lets on.
More evidence of Yui's intentions is found in The End of Evangelion:
Fuyutsuki: Humans exist because they have the will to live... And that is the reason she remained within Eva.
It's plain that in Fuyutsuki's view Yui remained in Eva-01 and deliberately defied Gendo's attempts to retrieve her. This brings us to the interesting conclusion that Gendo originally didn't know Yui's intentions. She confided in her sensei, Fuyutsuki, but not her husband.
The Day of the Experiment
Harder to understand is why Yui would want Shinji present for her contact experiment. We know that she was planning to be absorbed by Eva-01 and to never return; why should she want Shinji to witness this? All we really have to go on is this conversation:
Fuyutsuki: What is this child doing here?
(Naoko) Akagi: He's director Ikari's son.
Fuyutsuki: Ikari, this is not a nursery school. Today's a crucial day!
Yui: I'm sorry, Professor Fuyutsuki. I'm the one who brought him.
Fuyutsuki: Yui, this is your experiment today.
Yui: That's why. I want to show my child the bright future.
Yui's last words before disappearing into the Eva tell us two things. Her actions somehow contain a clue about her plans for Third Impact and the fate of mankind (the bright future), and that she believed that it was important for Shinji to preview this "bright future". But why was it important that a three year old child see his mother vanish? Was it somehow important for her plans that Shinji be traumatized? This certainly wouldn't earn her any "Mother of the Year" awards.
Another possibility is that she underestimated the effect it would have, or somehow not realize that Gendo would be dysfunctional to the point of abandoning Shinji. Did she perhaps believe that Gendo and Shinji would recover from their loss and that Gendo would raise Shinji to be dedicated to their plans?
Any of these are possible, but it's impossible to choose from them with just the evidence we have.
Another question would be did she or did she not realize that Gendo would institute his own plan in defiance of Seele, a plan which would direct Third Impact toward reuniting himself with Yui?
What is also important to notice here is that Fuyutsuki's lines reveals that he no idea that Yui had wanted to bring Shinji along for the experiment. He at first believes Gendo was the one who brought him along, but is caught off-guard when Yui admits that it was her idea. Fuyutsuki then covertly tries to question Yui on why she had Shinji brought along, as both of them knows what is going to to happen, his words betraying some rather justified concern that Shinji will be negatively impacted by witnessing the upcoming "accident". Yui's response, which proves to be her last words, is just her insisting that it must happen, though without giving him any details as to why. Overall, the moment shows that even though Fuyutsuki was her closest confidant and co-conspirator, Yui was evidently keeping some of her cards close to her chest, even when it came to him.
Yui's Plan for Third Impact
But what exactly are Yui's plans for Third Impact and the fate of mankind? This question is even harder to answer from the available evidence. We do know that it is different from Seele's scenario, and that the difference is significant enough for her to risk everything to achieve it. Seele's plan is to unite the souls of all mankind into a single being inside the Black Moon. Thus the one thing we do know for certain is that this is not Yui's plan.
Is there anything we can learn about Yui's plans from the available evidence? Yes there is. As we learned above, Yui says she is showing Shinji the "bright future". Just what does she show him? She shows him herself becoming one with an Evangelion Unit. Could this be her plan for everyone else as well? It very well could be. We know that Gendo's plan involved all the human souls, and perhaps the plant and animal souls as well, entering the Evas during Third Impact. (See Theory and Analysis: Gendo's Agenda for details.) His plan, however, was designed to reunite himself with Yui, and it is possible that under his guidance Third Impact would end when he achieved his goal and everyone else would emerge from the "ark called Eva" and be free to reembody, as ultimately happened after the Black Moon shattered and freed the souls.
Thus it is likely that Yui's plan also envisioned all of the souls entering the Evas. But would it also have been temporary under her plan? It's impossible to say for certain; it very well could have been, but would she really have called entering the Evas the "bright future" if they were just a temporary refuge, and when they had served their purpose everyone would just resume their lives? On the other hand, at the end of EOE she seems to be happy with the results, so perhaps "everyone gets the chance to reembody" was her plan all along.
And ponder this: if you include the M.P. Evas, there would be at least 14 Evangelions to choose from. So perhaps the big difference between Yui's and Seele's plans is that if Yui had completely succeeded, instead of a single being, Instrumentality would have culminated with the creating of over a dozen. This would have solved the problem of Instrumentality being the same as non-existence due to the absence of others, the very realization that lead Shinji to reject it.
There is one more question to consider: did Yui foresee the creation of Rei and the decisive part she would play in Third Impact, or was this exclusively part of Gendo's Scenario? While the blue-haired Angel on her wedding card is intriguing, it is possible that the memory of the blue-haired Angel (associated with Gendo's wedding with Yui, a very happy event for both of them) somehow influenced Rei's future appearance rather than anticipating her creation altogether.
Yui as Eva-01
From what we see of Yui in her Lilin form, she seems to be a very pleasant, soft spoken and caring person. However, on the occasions when she manifests herself as Eva-01 (the berserk incidents) we see a very different Yui, ruthless and violent. In episode 02 she rips off part of Sachiel's face, and then tears out its rib-cage before using the broken ribs to crack the Angel's core. In Episode 16 she utterly disembowels Leliel from the inside, and acts in an even more bestial fashion in Episode 19, when she rips Zeruel to shreds and partially devours the angel, including its S^2 engine. Apparently she is willing to do whatever it takes to further her plans and protect her child.
Worse still, in EOE she seems to deliberately wait until Asuka is dead before breaking through the special bakelite so Shinji can board the entry plug. Why should this be? One possibility is that her plans require Shinji to be traumatized before causing Third Impact, but wouldn't she want him to make a rational decision? Or perhaps she needed the M.P. Evas to help start Third Impact, and knew that even if Asuka died she would be back later. (This assumes that Yui's plan was for a temporary Instrumentality.)
"Making something... Nurturing something is really great. You can see and learn so many things from the process."
But the most puzzling question question of all is "Why leave it up to Shinji anyway?" We can piece together why Rei would do so, but why would Yui? Didn't she want to thwart Seele by seizing control of Third Impact and directing it toward her desired outcome? As things turned out, Seele damn nearly got what they wanted. There could be many reasons for this. For instance, she could just have faith in Shinji to to the right thing. Another could be that by this time she realized that Rei would be taking over and was content to set things up for her.
Yui at the End
The final question that was asked at the top of this page was "Did she plan all along to go into exile in outer space?" The evidence says "Yes, she did." In EOE we see the end of Yui's and Fuyutsuki's lakeside conversation at Hakone, a part we hadn't seen before.
(Flashback to 13 years ago - Fuyutsuki, Yui and infant-Shinji)
Fuyutsuki: Humans create Evangelion in imitation of God... Is this our true goal?
Yui: Yes. Humans can only live on this planet, but Evangelion can live forever... together with the human soul that dwells within it.
(EVA-01 and the Lance of Longinus float in space
Yui: Even after 5 billion years, when the Earth, the Moon, and even the Sun have disappeared, it will still exist as long as even one person still lives. It will be very lonely, but as long as that one person still lives...
Fuyutsuki: It will be the eternal proof that humankind has existed...
Shinji: Good-bye, mother.
As has been demonstrated, Yui had already decided to be the soul of Eva-01, therefore it seems reasonably clear that she is refering to herself here as "that one person" who will live forever as proof of mankind's existence.
Some people have theorized that maybe Yui grabbed some of the souls that Rei/Lilith was channeling into the Black Moon and was going to use them to start everything over on some other planet. Another theory states that when she bit Gendo in half she took his soul and thus he got his wish after all. There seems to be little credible evidence for the first of these, and the second is supported only by the tenuous fact that Gendo's body is never shown turning into LCL. See Theory and Analysis: Gendo's Agenda for more on this. Both of these theories would seem to be soundly precluded by Yui's references to the one very lonely person. Thus Yui left Earth alone.