Paragraph-level backlinks?

I have a question concerning a rather specific use scenario, not sure if this is the right place to post it.

Is there any way to link from one specific paragraph within a note to another note, sort of like a block reference in reverse, if that makes sense. What I’m trying to accomplish: I’m a researcher working on a larger writing project. While working on a given reference note, I link it to any of my idea notes to which this particular reference might be relevant. My idea notes then display these linked references as backlinks, which is very useful to get a quick overview of related readings. But as my reference notes tend to get quite long and unwieldy (and I really do not want to break them up further), it would save me a lot of time scrolling through and locating the relevant bits if I could use backlinks to point to a specific passage within them. Is there any way to accomplish this?

Apologies if there is an obvious solution that hasn’t occurred to me. I have been doing some research but couldn’t find exactly what I’m looking for. I should perhaps add that I’m loath to resort to hashtags as my whole system is built around links (sometimes these links point to ideas that aren’t yet a note, but will be turned into one once they’ve accrued a sufficient number of backlinks).

I hope I’ve managed to convey my purpose. Thanks for any help you may provide!

Is this what you want? Link to blocks - Obsidian Help

I’m also a researcher and use block links quite a lot. I find they’re much less stable than links to entire notes bc Obsidian doesn’t auto-update them. Often I have to manually search for the link code that’s being referenced to find it again. Same goes for heading links. It’s a bit of a pain but still very useful.

Thank you for your suggestion.

I understand that you can use block links to link from one note to a specific block in another. What I would like to do is the opposite: link from one block within a note to another note, such that this particular block would appear in the backlinks section of the latter note. Can you see the difference?

Not possible, because Obsidian works at the note-level and not the block-level. You might wanna check out Logseq instead.

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Many thanks for this suggestion.

Oh wow, Loqseq really does do this beautifully. I’ve invested a month building my Zettelkasten in Obsidian and would prefer to stick with it, but if there’s no other way I might have to bite the bullet. Any views on this?

Gotcha. Sorry I misunderstood. See if the plug in “Block Reference Counter” does what you want.

In the Backlinks pane, click/tap the first icon in the row of icons to expand the search previews. You’ll see an excerpt of each link. Click/tap the Expand button next to it for larger previews (the entire paragraph, I believe).

Thanks JAndrews2. It appears that plugin has been discontinued. Will look out for others.

Thank you for this suggestion, but this does not quite do the trick. As I mentioned, my reference notes can get very long and I would like to be able to see a specific block from within a given reference in the backlinks section (not a preview of the first para, nor a preview of the entire page).

The previews are of the text around the link, and there is one for each link, same as search results.

Thank you, I wasn’t aware of this option, that’s great. It does behave a bit erratically at times, but this is close enough I think!

Wouldn’t it be great though if you could then also drag and drop (or copy and paste) those blocks of text from the backlink window into your main note in some way? Doesn’t seem to be an option currently, or am I again missing a beat?

Could a plug-in accomplish this at some point in the future or is this unlikely because Obsidian is based on pages and not blocks, as was pointed out earlier in this thread?

I think there’s an existing feature request for that. (EDIT: There is, and I merged your request into it. Sorry, I thought I’d replied here earlier but it turns out I’d not pressed the “Reply” button.)

I always find it weird to not be allowed to copy text anywhere on a computer (error messages, App Store reviews, etc). Mac & iOS have Live Text now so I can screenshot and select that way, but I shouldn’t have to.

Could a plugin accomplish the drag and drop thing, or the backlink thing? Either way, I think probably yes.

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