Souls


#1

I think I saw in another thread that the Church teaches that all animals (or living things) have souls, but the difference is that the souls of animals (or living things other than humans) are mortal (rational?) and die when the animal dies.
Is this the view of the Church and where can I find this?


#2

I do not know but regardless of what some people may think I still believe that animals will be in heaven:)


#3

The Church teaches that every living thing has a soul. This includes plants and animals. The soul is the animating principle so there cannot be life without a soul. The souls of all non-human living things are called material souls. These are not immortal. Human beings have spiritual souls, which are by nature immortal.

Lisa4Catholics:
Don’t worry, God can put your pets in heaven with you if he wants to. If God willed it, He could recreate your pet exactly as it was with the same memory, etc.


#4

[quote=atsheeran]The Church teaches that every living thing has a soul. This includes plants and animals. The soul is the animating principle so there cannot be life without a soul. The souls of all non-human living things are called material souls. These are not immortal. Human beings have spiritual souls, which are by nature immortal.

[/quote]

Thanks. Can you tell me where I can find something that documents this. My wife and I are both Catholics but when I told her about this she didn’t believe me.


#5

Hi Thistle,

Just like the poster Fidelis, I am a HUGE fan of the the Theology for the Laity series put out by the Rosary Confraternity.

See this link rosary-center.org/ll50n4.htm for the article on Human and Animal/Plant souls.

(You might want to poke around the rest of the website too for some GREAT study and devotional material).

Good luck, hope it helps!
VC


#6

[quote=thistle]I think I saw in another thread that the Church teaches that all animals (or living things) have souls, but the difference is that the souls of animals (or living things other than humans) are mortal (rational?) and die when the animal dies.
Is this the view of the Church and where can I find this?
[/quote]

St. Thomas Aquinas

Summa Theologica Part I Q:75-80

newadvent.org/summa/107500.htm

Particularly (ST I: Q75 a3 - Are the souls of brute animals subsistent?)

newadvent.org/summa/107503.htm

The soul (anima in Latin) , by definition, is what gives life to otherwise lifeless matter (animates).


#7

[quote=Verbum Caro]Just like the poster Fidelis, I am a HUGE fan of the the Theology for the Laity series put out by the Rosary Confraternity.

See this link rosary-center.org/ll50n4.htm for the article on Human and Animal/Plant souls.

(You might want to poke around the rest of the website too for some GREAT study and devotional material).

Good luck, hope it helps!
VC
[/quote]

Yup, great site, although I haven’t yet read this particular article. Thanks for the tip! :smiley:

Also, Frank Sheed, in his popular (and very readable) book “Theology For Beginners” has a very enlightening chapter on this very subject. I believe the book is available from Catholic Answers.


#8

Also, spiritual souls are actually conscious, rational, and have free will besides just being imortal.

Material souls are simply the name we give to the “form” of animal and plant substances. And when the matter is no longer a plant or animal, the form has changed and disappeared.

In “heaven” per se, there will be no animals…because heaven is a spiritual state…and animals exist only physically.

But at the end of time, when we are resurrected and reunited with the glorified physical world, then indeed God could recreate animals and give them the same DNA pattern and memories programmed in the neurons etc.


#9

[quote=thistle]Is this the view of the Church and where can I find this?
[/quote]

if you have time, check the thread “Will our pets go to heaven with us?” an interesting discussion on this topic.


#10

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