WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Infinity Wars #6 by Gerry Duggan, Mike Deodato Jr., Frank Martin and Cory Petit, in stores now.
The Infinity Stones are arguably the most powerful weapons in the entire Marvel Universe, as evidenced by Thanos reshaping reality in Infinity Gauntlet and Requiem (see: evil Gamora) following suit in Infinity Wars. Of course, you can also look to Avengers: Infinity War to see how they can change the very fabric of life in the universe on the big screen.
That said, Marvel has been tweaking the concept of these stones over the years, moving away from the Infinity Gems of old. Recently, we found out which was the most powerful stone and who exactly was responsible for seeding them in the multiverse. In the Infinity Wars finale, however, everything we know changes drastically again, as these artifacts get redefined in the biggest way imaginable.
THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE SET
When Loki met the creators of the stones in Infinity Wars #5, we saw these Celestials manufacturing the items below the God Quarry, planting them in various realities. With so many sets of Infinity Stones out there, Loki realizes in Issue #6 that it's futile to attempt to play god like he has been doing, that is, until he peeks into the future and sees what he must do for the benefit of creation.
Using the stones he stole from the Warped World, Loki renders all the other sets across the multiverse inert, including the set from the Marvel-616 Universe that Requiem collected. The only Infinity Stones we're left with are Loki's bunch, and he relinquishes them to Adam Warlock and his Infinity Watch to bring back Marvel's main reality and also save Warped World.
With just one last set existing, though, this could invite threats from other realities that want to capture them to become gods themselves, similar to Requiem and the Mad Titan. Loki may have had altruistic intentions, but he has placed a big target on this reality.
THE STONES NOW HAVE SOULS
After Requiem's vengeful actions are undone and both realities are restored, Adam decides the remaining stones must be used differently than past experiences. They're not just tools, but something so much more. In exchange for giving him a soul in the past, Adam uses the Soul Stone and returns the favor -- giving every single Infinity Stone a soul. They become sentient and jet off into the depths of the galaxy, to protect themselves and presumably find partners, not people who want to selfishly wield them.
Even when Adam assumes the Soul Stone will remain with him because of the bond they share, it flies off too, confirming it needs to meet new people, which Star-Lord jokingly compares to a break-up. It's a fascinating development that changes the stones at their most basic level. At their core, these Infinity Stones are no longer weapons, they're now living things making their own decisions, which could inevitably see them judging the cosmos their own way.
Giving them souls seems like a compassionate move, but it may end up being a bad thing if they turn on the universe, because as the decades of stories involving these relics have shown, they were taken advantage of. And now, Adam just gave them the ability to either preserve life or seek revenge for past transgressions. How these stones react to this newfound freedom, well, that remains to be seen.