All living things have a soul–from plants to animals to human beings. A soul is the unifying principle of a living thing. What human beings have is a spiritual soul (also known as a rational soul) made in the Image and Likeness of God. This means that we have an intellect for Truth (God) and a will for goodness and love (God).
All living things need something outside of themselves to continue living—and the higher the living thing is in the hierarchy of life, the greater inner activity exists within it. Plants take in oxygen, water, phosphates, minerals and sunshine. Animals are higher in the hierarchy because they can take in more of the outside world inside of themselves: with their senses they can hear, see, smell, feel and taste the outside world, and can move from sun to shade. Likewise, Man needs oxygen, water, minerals, and sunshine— and with the body’s senses brings the outside world in through sight, sound, smell, touch, and taste. But unlike animals, Man can know, reason and understand the universe in which he lives and has *the power to produce ideas. *
Ideas are some of the most powerful things in the universe—it is the mind which splits the atom; whereas an atom cannot even know itself. Man is more than matter. Televisions and computers are made out of glass, plastic and metal— but there is nothing about glass, plastic or metal that can produce rational information. The information comes from without. Likewise, physical man is made out of oxygen, carbon, nitrogen and trace metals. But there is nothing about oxygen, carbon, nitrogen and trace metals that can produce rational ideas. This originates from outside the physical and from within the Rational Soul. Thus we know things like “Justice” “Faith” “Hope” “Forgiveness” “Good” “Evil”. An animal does not have that capacity. Men and angels do.
In order to live you must eat—no food means no life. Life is dependent on something outside of itself to continue living. Thus all living things could be said to live under a “Law of Communion” which states “In order to live you must eat—no food means NO LIFE”. Thus the bird in the sky and the fish in the sea, and the beast in the field, and man himself is in pursuit of his daily bred in order to live. But Man is more than physical, He is spiritual; thus God gives Himself as food for Man to live. Thus Jesus said things like: I Am the Bread of Life" and *“unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood you shall have not have life in you…”