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Do animals have souls? Your thoughts!

Kumali

Lupine-American
regarding the entire *rest* of the discussion about religious perspectives...a very wide variety of claims are being made that cannot really be demonstrated.
That's the problem I have with all religions. Christianity in particular.
 

Raever

Chaotic Neutral Wreckage
That's the problem I have with all religions. Christianity in particular.
I feel compelled to say that Christianity is neither the first nor the last religious group to have a reputation of ignorance and blind worship. It's best to avoid pointing fingers and starting fires.
 

Punji

Vaskebjørn
I don't feel this is the appropriate thread nor platform for airing one's criticisms and critiques of organized religions. That's not exactly what this thread is about and the concept of a soul isn't strictly a religious belief.

As for the topic, I personally don't believe animals have souls. I think they're smart, I think they think, and I think my two cats each have more personality to them than a lot of humans I've met. Some animals anyways.

This is not the same thing as having a soul in my opinion. Nor does it dictate "correct" treatment of humans or animals.
 

Kumali

Lupine-American
It's best to avoid pointing fingers and starting fires.

I don't feel this is the appropriate thread nor platform for airing one's criticisms and critiques of organized religions. That's not exactly what this thread is about
I’m happy to keep my religious doubts to myself if other furs are willing to keep their religious beliefs to themselves. However, if some people are allowed to state their religious beliefs and use them to support positions in a discussion (see posts 62 and 71 as examples), it seems to me only fair that those of us who don’t share such beliefs should be afforded the same courtesy of stating our beliefs or lack thereof.

I also thought Fallowfox’s point that I quoted was very well taken, and relevant to the discussion.
 

Punji

Vaskebjørn
I’m happy to keep my religious doubts to myself if other furs are willing to keep their religious beliefs to themselves. However, if some people are allowed to state their religious beliefs and use them to support positions in a discussion (see posts 62 and 71 as examples), it seems to me only fair that those of us who don’t share such beliefs should be afforded the same courtesy of stating our beliefs or lack thereof.

I also thought Fallowfox’s point that I quoted was very well taken, and relevant to the discussion.
I think there is a difference in intentions and meanings with this.

If person A says "The Bible says humans are the stewards of creation and animals are merely a part of the world for humanity to maintain as they see fit," that's all fine and good. Expressing a relevant belief without infringing on other beliefs.

If person B says to or about person A, "there's no reason to believe any of that nonsense" nothing good was added to the discussion.

Having or lacking any particular beliefs is fine and no one has any good right to complain about it. Telling other people their beliefs are foolish or wrong or whatever isn't useful or helpful to anyone.

Saying "there is no reason to believe animals have souls or that souls even exist" is harmless. Expressing a respectful lack of belief is fine, complaining about other's beliefs is not.
 

Kumali

Lupine-American
I think there is a difference in intentions and meanings with this.

If person A says "The Bible says humans are the stewards of creation and animals are merely a part of the world for humanity to maintain as they see fit," that's all fine and good. Expressing a relevant belief without infringing on other beliefs.

If person B says to or about person A, "there's no reason to believe any of that nonsense" nothing good was added to the discussion.

Having or lacking any particular beliefs is fine and no one has any good right to complain about it. Telling other people their beliefs are foolish or wrong or whatever isn't useful or helpful to anyone.

Saying "there is no reason to believe animals have souls or that souls even exist" is harmless. Expressing a respectful lack of belief is fine, complaining about other's beliefs is not.
Well, now, if we’re going to have a respectful discussion let’s start with you not putting words in my mouth. “A very wide variety of claims are being made that cannot really be demonstrated” is not the same as "there's no reason to believe any of that nonsense,” and I never said the latter. (I did say that undemonstrated claims is a problem I have with all religions, Christianity in particular, and I stand by that.)


And a lot of undemonstrated claims ARE being made. If they’re personal beliefs and nothing more, that’s fine, as long as we’re clear that that’s all they are. Everyone’s entitled to their own personal beliefs, as am I. That alone doesn’t make any of those beliefs verified fact.


Meher Baba, who claimed to be God in human form in the 20th century, stated in his book God Speaks that all souls reincarnate through millions of lifetimes, passing through forms from stone to vegetation to lower animals to “higher” animals to humans, innumerable lifetimes at each level, until they finally attain God-consciousness and return to the One from which all beings come. So there’s an answer to the original question. If anyone wants to challenge or dispute it, they’re welcome to, but unless there’s factual evidence to support counter positions (and no, the Bible doesn’t qualify as such), then I would argue that Meher Baba’s answer is just as valid as any other answer.
 

Punji

Vaskebjørn
Well, now, if we’re going to have a respectful discussion let’s start with you not putting words in my mouth. “A very wide variety of claims are being made that cannot really be demonstrated” is not the same as "there's no reason to believe any of that nonsense,” and I never said the latter. (I did say that undemonstrated claims is a problem I have with all religions, Christianity in particular, and I stand by that.)


And a lot of undemonstrated claims ARE being made. If they’re personal beliefs and nothing more, that’s fine, as long as we’re clear that that’s all they are. Everyone’s entitled to their own personal beliefs, as am I. That alone doesn’t make any of those beliefs verified fact.


Meher Baba, who claimed to be God in human form in the 20th century, stated in his book God Speaks that all souls reincarnate through millions of lifetimes, passing through forms from stone to vegetation to lower animals to “higher” animals to humans, innumerable lifetimes at each level, until they finally attain God-consciousness and return to the One from which all beings come. So there’s an answer to the original question. If anyone wants to challenge or dispute it, they’re welcome to, but unless there’s factual evidence to support counter positions (and no, the Bible doesn’t qualify as such), then I would argue that Meher Baba’s answer is just as valid as any other answer.
You're jumping the gun here I think. You replied to me. I don't mean those examples as anything more, and I'm not directing them at you or anyone else. I only want people to act with decency to other's beliefs, and some of the posts prior made me feel like I ought to have said something about it.
 

Connor J. Coyote

Well-Known Member
I think my two cats each have more personality to them than a lot of humans I've met. Some animals anyways.
@Punji Well, then.... perhaps you haven't met the right ones then, buddy. :p

As, to be honest with you - what appears to be lacking in the personality department (in your view) for some - may not necessarily apply to everyone else in that particular person's world.

At the very least, one should respect the dignity of a fellow human - regardless of one's opinions on their personality traits.
Nor does it dictate "correct" treatment of humans or animals.
That's right - it doesn't..... including those whom we may deem "dislikable". :p
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Anyways, I'm of the firm belief that all animals have souls though, as I posted on here earlier.... and yes, all humans do as well - (even those whom may fail in the personality department for some). And thus - life on the Earth in general, (as well as people's spiritual beliefs) all deserve some respect.... regardles of our opinions of them personally.
 

Yakamaru

Not enough fucking minerals!
If people are interested in having a conversation but is openly showing a lack of respect for other people's beliefs on the subject people are going to be reluctant in engaging with you. It's as simple as "do not be the embodiment of which you claim to be against". You can't claim X have no respect and then be respectless yourself, that's not how it works.

Onto the topic itself so as to not veer too much off-topic..

The topic of a soul in general is an interesting one. I am uncertain whether we as humans have one let alone that of animals. How can you even quantify or prove that souls exist?
 

Raever

Chaotic Neutral Wreckage
The topic of a soul in general is an interesting one. I am uncertain whether we as humans have one let alone that of animals. How can you even quantify or prove that souls exist?

If you could, it wouldn't be theory- or, more accurately stated, philosophy. It'd be scientific.
 

Fallowfox

Are we moomin, or are we dancer?
The definition of a 'soul' is not always consistent within the same philosophy anyway.

So the question in the OP is I suppose more asking whether people view animal sentience and value as comparable to that of humans.

And there's no clear answer to that, even if somebody does view all on-human animals as lesser. If you go back through your ancestors and ask the same question 'is their sentience comparable to mine?', eventually you'll end up looking at animals that are very clearly not human, but there will have been no clear dividing mark where that happened.

It's like asking when a boy becomes a man. It doesn't happen at any particular moment.
 

Yazoht

Second Unofficial Autobiographer
Whether hanging out with your cat, fishing baby raccoons out from an apartment dumpster, or locking eyes with squirrels on trees for a few minutes, once you learn their 'language' you can ascertain the animal's anxieties, wants, and confusion, and also communicate back to them. They behave as if they can feel threatened, content, and determined like we do.

I don't consider these animals to be any less aware of the present moment than I am, and I don't see how it is fair that one can consider their self to have a soul while denying that same assertion for other living things. What a soul is is another topic, which I have no confidence to debate about
 
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BayoDino

Well-Known Dino
I do not believe in soul, but answering to the title, since humans are species of animals and are SUPPOSED to have soul, animals also have it.
 

Raever

Chaotic Neutral Wreckage
So the question in the OP is I suppose more asking whether people view animal sentience and value as comparable to that of humans.

The answer to that is easily no, and is backed by science, but let me amend that cold logic by also saying human levels of sentience is not all that's needed to be a considered a living creature.

Just because animals have a more base understanding of what they encounter and experience, does not mean they are lesser than humans by some unseen totem pole. Not in the general or spiritual sense anyway.

Perhaps in most cases of survival a human would survive where an animal wouldn't, so you could argue that humans are more capable of adapting quickly to changes than an average animal...but that isn't at all the same argument anymore.
 

MadKiyo

Imma bat in yer rafters
I don't align myself with any particular belief system but I do believe consciousness is something universal and manifests in ways beyond the closed circuit that is our brain. Once we die we become one with everything and sense everything. We will always be part of the universe no matter our form, just as living beings we are closed off from the universe and perceive it in a limited way.
 

AceQuorthon

International Man Of Mystery
I believe every animal on earth has a soul in one way or another, even the simplest insects. I hate mosquitos but I hate killing them too. It’s complicated, but nothing is 100% gone, the soul always lives on.
 

Connor J. Coyote

Well-Known Member
Whether hanging out with your cat, fishing baby raccoons out from an apartment dumpster, or locking eyes with squirrels on trees for a few minutes, once you learn their 'language' you can ascertain the animal's anxieties, wants, and confusion, and also communicate back to them. They behave as if they can feel threatened, content, and determined like we do.
Hey.... it's very simple..... our fellow animals *do* have thoughts, feelings, a sense of safety, a sense of happiness and security, and - a sense of compassion - (from other animals as well as from us humans).

And in essence, their feelings (and their understandings of them) and the environments that they're in is often times parallel to us humans, in how we understand our own feelings, (and our own environments).
I don't see how it is fair that one can consider their self to have a soul while denying that same assertion for other living things.
Well, that's correct, it's not fair..... nor is it spritually right either - many of us could point out. One who claims to have a soul, (and then denies that to others) could be seen as the epitome of hypocrisy (at worst), and the epitome of callous disregard (at best).
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The fact that many believe a soul exists, and is a part of one's place in the universe - should (whether it be animal or human) *at least* be respected..... even if one disagrees with that viewpoint.
 

Sirhorsealot

Tryhard
Well, long story short; yes, I definitely think animals have souls. Honestly, I don't define a soul in terms of capacity for emotion or how cognizant something may be. I see it more as the essence of life - in everything that's living is a soul, and when the creature possessing the soul dies, it's essentially recycled and interwoven with other souls until the imprint the creature left on it is small enough that it can be reused for something else. Kind of a patchwork quilt situation, if you will. I know it's oddly specific, but it's what a truly believe. Because of this method, small parts of those who had the different souls will come through in the one who has the new soul, but these amount to little more than muscle memory and a penchant for similar situations. Of course, that's just my take on it ^^ Most of this comes from phenomena I've witnessed in real life, especially in my own sister, who apparently has done a number of things my great-grandpa (who passed away before I was born, unfortunately) used to do, such as using the middle finger to point instead of the pointer finger. So, this viewpoint is entirely subjective.
 

Netanye Dakabi

people call me queen
Banned
if you define a soul as a "spirit" meaning a body of emotion rather than a material form then you'd have be delusional not to notice that animals have emotions.

the rest i dunno.
 
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