Thursday, October 15, 2009

Animal souls

If you believe that humans have souls because they have thoughts and feelings, then you also have to believe that animals have souls, because animals DO have thoughts and feelings.

A little etymological lesson is in order. The Latin word for soul is anima, which means "that which animates", and from which we have the word animalia "that which is animated", which in modern english translates as "animal". So we humans ARE animals too, because we are indeed "animated".

So whether you believe that "that which animates" is simply the biochemical process we know as life or an esoteric, sprititual force of some kind, my point is if you believe that humans have souls, you also have to believe that animals - and every other living thing - have souls as well. Ask yourselves what the implications are for your faith. Are humans "special" among all the species? If we nuke ourselves out of existence in a third world war, and rats survive and prevail, then maybe we humans are the dumb ones, and rats are superior.

To believe in souls is one thing, but to believe that only humans have souls is very anthropocentric, and I'm sorry to say this, but, the Universe isn't as anthropocentric as you may feel.

I predict that rats will survive and continue to evolve long after we humans have gone the way of the dodo, that is to say, gone extinct.

1 comment:

  1. W'sup my friend?

    I'm not gonna go all biblical on your ass, cause it's boring and nobody really cares. But if you want to know where I get these ideas from, I'll be glad to share them with you. But I think what separates us from the animals is the fact that we can communicate with God. Things like God created us in his image, man is the crowning glory of God's handiwork. There's another verse that says God has set eternity in the hearts of man, I think that could mean that not only am I aware of eternity and God but that we can have a relationship with him.

    So to answer your question things like feelings and emotions and experiences can be had by animals and people. But a relationship is reserved for us humans.

    Also I left a response for you over at my place on Adolph.

    Peace be with you, feeno