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Arrow Question / Issue:

Do animals have souls?

 

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Yes, animals have souls...

* In scripture, Job speaks of "the soul of every living thing" (Job 12:10)

* St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church, notes that "animal is named from soul" [Latin: anima]

* Pope John Paul II said "animals possess a soul"

* St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, said, "For man consists of soul and body, but so do the beasts. There is no doubt that in the natural order the soul is superior to the body. But in the soul of man there is reason, which is not present in the beast."

As St. Augustine notes above, humans souls have reason, whereas animal souls do not possess reason.

+ + +

"For every animal of the forest is mine, beasts by the thousands on my mountains. I know every bird of the heavens; the creatures of the field belong to me." (Ps. 50:10-11)

"[Jesus said:] Are not two sparrows sold for a small coin? Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father's knowledge." (Mt. 10:29)

"In all created things discern the providence and wisdom of God, and in all things give Him thanks." (St. Teresa of Jesus, Doctor of the Church)

"Every being that is not God, is God's creature. Now every creature of God is Good (1 Tm. 4:4), and God is the greatest good. Therefore every being is good." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"Not only heaven and earth, not only man and angel, even the bowels of the lowest animal, even the wing of the bird, the flower of the plant, the leaf of the tree, hath God endowed with every fitting detail of their nature." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church)

"For you love all things that are and loathe nothing that you have made; for what you hated, you would not have fashioned. And how could a thing remain, unless you willed it; or be preserved, had it not been called forth by you? But you spare all things, because they are yours, O LORD and lover of souls, for your imperishable spirit is in all things!" (Wisdom 11:24-26,12:1)

"I will make a covenant for them on that day, with the beasts of the field, With the birds of the air, and with the things that crawl on the ground. Bow and sword and war I will destroy from the land, and I will let them take their rest in security. I will espouse you to me forever: I will espouse you in right and in justice, in love and in mercy; I will espouse you in fidelity, and you shall know the LORD." (Hosea 2:20-22)

"We must hold and believe unshakably that whatever creatures there are in the heavens, whatever on earth, whatever in the sea and in all the depths, they have been created by God; because, as we have already said: 'He made all that He willed, in the heavens and on earth, in the sea and in all the depths.' He was not compelled to make all that He made; rather, 'everything that He willed, He made.' The cause of all that He made is His will... God created by reason of His goodness; He was in need of nothing that He made; therefore, 'everything whatsoever He willed, He made.'" (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, c. 5th century A.D.)

"As to the union, harmony, and peace among the various animals which are by nature mutually inimical and hostile, the elders say that it will really be so, when Christ comes again to be King over all." [St. Irenaeus (a disciple of St. Polycarp, a hearer of St. John the Apostle), c. 190-200 A.D.]


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Animals / Pets (Topic Page) [Incl. Scripture for animal lovers, reflections, prayers for animals, animals in Church history, etc.]

 

  

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