This is a split board - You can return to the Split List for other boards.

For those who believe in souls, what animals get souls and why?

#114cv88Posted 3/19/2014 12:20:53 PM
I'm genuinely curious what the answer is, I'm assuming there's Biblical justification but was curious exactly what the justification was.
#2Moorish_IdolPosted 3/19/2014 12:48:23 PM
Gen. 2:7 says that the "breath of life" is what allows things to become living creatures, and it was given to humans too, so the general idea is that anything living has this "soul".

I think the difference, though, is that man's soul has the trait of being like God's (Gen. 1:26), which also grants dominion over other creatures. In other words, man's soul is eternal like God's while other animals' souls aren't necessarily so.

That's my reading into the Biblical notion of animal souls anyway. I'm sure others will have different interpretations.

Also I believe in souls despite not believing in the Bible, but I wasn't sure if you were interested in that or not.
#3ThuggernautzPosted 3/19/2014 1:03:28 PM
Do you (and others) think viruses have souls?
#4OrangeWizardPosted 3/19/2014 1:07:01 PM
Do you (and others) think viruses are living? Last I heard the jury was still out on that.
---
The head is backwards.
The head is backwards
#5Moorish_IdolPosted 3/19/2014 1:07:36 PM
Viruses are acellular so they aren't technically living.
#6kozlo100Posted 3/19/2014 1:13:12 PM
Viruses are kind of confusing like that. I guess the better question would be regarding something unicellular but unequivocally alive, like bacteria.
---
Time flies like the wind,
and fruit flies like a banana.
#7Dathrowed1Posted 3/19/2014 1:48:28 PM(edited)
Naw, plants aren't included in "living creatures" (and therefore "souls")
---
sig
#8ThuggernautzPosted 3/19/2014 2:11:04 PM
All of these responses are pretty much why I asked the question. Point being, souls and even 'life' are such ill-defined terms that it makes any discussion like this very difficult. Their existence and proliferation at the edge of life, using the same mechanisms as all other forms of life seems murky as to why they were created in the first place (if that's what you believe).
#9kozlo100Posted 3/19/2014 2:22:39 PM
I don't think it'd be too difficult pairing souls to lives, with these edge cases having edge case souls.
---
Time flies like the wind,
and fruit flies like a banana.
#10Moorish_IdolPosted 3/19/2014 4:07:20 PM
kozlo100 posted...
Viruses are kind of confusing like that. I guess the better question would be regarding something unicellular but unequivocally alive, like bacteria.

I've researched this question in the past (whether bacteria would have souls). It gets messy, but the conclusion I always come to is that there is a difference between awareness due to consciousness, and awareness due to sensitivity. Bacteria react to stimuli, but this is a response to sensation, not a response to perception (which is a higher cognitive ability). The difference lying largely in whether self-concept is present in the organism or not.

So to broaden the point, not all life necessarily has consciousness, and if consciousness is a product of the soul, then bacteria would not have a soul.

This is of course just one of many definitions of "soul", to Thug's point, but that's typically what I go with -- consciousness, awareness of self.
I think it's also the most common definition in philosophical circles, but religions like Christianity usually take a step or two further into the realms of personality and emotion and so on (which is why I personally don't really like the word soul. I prefer mind, or spirit in some cases, because "soul" has some baggage, but for the sake of this topic I'll use it).

This also brings up Thug's question about why these non-soul-having living things exist at all, and while I'm not really sure what the answer would be by a Biblical creationist, personally it's not much of an issue because I don't believe souls exist due to the existence of living organisms. It's the ol' "souls have bodies, bodies don't have souls" cliche. Functional organisms developed independently from the existence of souls.