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  #11  
Old 2nd March 2010, 05:46 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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Originally Posted by zouxi View Post
Ron, you ranked animals and plants in the same level, do plants have souls as well?
I was not ranking plants and animals together.

Human persons have immortal souls, including free will and reason.

Animals have souls that are not immortal; they do not have free will or reason.

Plants do not have souls at all.
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  #12  
Old 2nd March 2010, 07:20 PM
zouxi zouxi is offline
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Thank you Ron...
  #13  
Old 7th December 2010, 02:05 AM
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Sacredcello Sacredcello is offline
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How do we know this about whether or not we will see our pets in heaven? Are there any TSM teachings on this? I understand that animals do not have a free will, but couldn't their souls still be elevated to heaven, even though they are not persons?

I am absolutely grief stricken that our evil neighbor at our new home decided to trap our indoor/outdoor cat while we were away for the weekend and she was euthanized upon arrival at the shelter. It gives me hope that I will see her in heaven, but perhaps I will never see her again.
  #14  
Old 7th December 2010, 12:25 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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Originally Posted by Sacredcello View Post
How do we know this about whether or not we will see our pets in heaven? Are there any TSM teachings on this? I understand that animals do not have a free will, but couldn't their souls still be elevated to heaven, even though they are not persons?

I am absolutely grief stricken that our evil neighbor at our new home decided to trap our indoor/outdoor cat while we were away for the weekend and she was euthanized upon arrival at the shelter. It gives me hope that I will see her in heaven, but perhaps I will never see her again.

Peter Kreeft says that we will see our pets in Heaven.

I disagree. The lower animals do not have immortal souls; only persons with free will and intellect have immortal souls.

There are no lower animals in Heaven because all in Heaven have the Beatific Vision of God. Animals cannot enter Heaven or have the BV because they do not have reason and free will. Also no one enters Heaven except through Christ and some form of Baptism. Animals are not baptized.

However, after the general Resurrection, God makes a new earth as well as a new Heaven. So there will be animals and plants, not so different from what we have today, including probably pets. But all animals will be tame at that time. There is nothing to prevent God from recreating our pets at that time (but it is not a reincarnation or resurrection, since their souls are not immortal.).
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  #15  
Old 7th December 2010, 01:02 PM
imperial imperial is offline
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Well I got to have my 2 cent worth here, it is a mystery.
Saint Francis loved animals and each year on the Feast Day of St. Francis, October 4th, we are to bless our animals.
I have a German Sheppard, my house is an open house visitors just about every day, I work from home and ever one that comes over [at first scared of him] end up loving him, he is one of the kindest dogs with a heart of gold and a love for all that is unbelievable, he does have a Identity crisis he thinks his human, I cannot begin to explained the things Luke does itís really mind-boggling.
Last week we put up the nativity scene in the lounge room, Luke rarely goes in there as we are always in the rumpus room, I said to him Luke go see the holy family, honestly with no Encouragement, pointing to or showing him were it is, he went straight to it and just stood there looking at it then he laid down in a peace like manner next to it.
I never knew animals had souls, and Iím a bit mystified as I canít understand that their soul will just vanish into nowhere, so do animals really have souls????????????

Last edited by imperial : 7th December 2010 at 01:05 PM.
  #16  
Old 7th December 2010, 04:01 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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Animals have souls, but not immortal souls.

Aquinas implies this in his discussion of the souls of humans versus animals.
here:
http://www.newadvent.org/summa/1118.htm
and here:
http://www.newadvent.org/summa/1075.htm#article3

Animals have a 'sensitive' soul, i.e. a soul pertaining to the material senses, but without rationality (reason, intellect). Humans have an intellectual soul, i.e. a soul with reason as well as free will.

"On the contrary, Is what is written in the book De Eccl. Dogm. xvi, xvii: "Man alone we believe to have a subsistent soul: whereas the souls of animals are not subsistent." "

The human soul is called 'subsistent' because it is a thing in itself, created directly by God, though united with the body thoroughly as one person (not as a ghost in a machine as Plato would have it).

The animal soul is not 'subsistent' because it is dependent entirely on the body, such that the death of the body is the end of the existence of their soul.

http://www.newadvent.org/summa/1075.htm#article6

"On the contrary, Dionysius says (Div. Nom. iv) that human souls owe to Divine goodness that they are "intellectual," and that they have "an incorruptible substantial life."
I answer that, We must assert that the intellectual principle which we call the human soul is incorruptible."

Human souls are incorruptible.

"Now it was shown above (2,3) that the souls of brutes are not self-subsistent, whereas the human soul is; so that the souls of brutes are corrupted, when their bodies are corrupted; while the human soul could not be corrupted unless it were corrupted "per se.""

Therefore, the souls of animals perish when they die, but the souls of human persons continue, unto judgment and reward or punishment.

Also, if there were animals souls in Heaven, they would need to have earned such an eternal reward, and if Heaven would be possible for animals, then Hell would also be possible. But since animals have no understanding of right or wrong, they can neither be rewarded eternally, nor punished eternally.
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  #17  
Old 13th December 2010, 03:10 PM
garabandalg garabandalg is offline
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Default I think animals go to Heaven and cannot see why hell should be involved at all

Here is my two cents worth on this issue

Our Lord and St. Francis clearly showed us that loving animals is something we should do as they are creatures of God. The blessing of the animals shows that we include our pets in our spiritual life.

We just adopted the most beautiful, obedient, and loving rescue dog named Cassie and she is a great addition to our home. After just 2 months we all love her very much and consider her part of the family. Her rescue lady says that such animals often show us what love and gratitude are truly about, and can even provide us with a role model as to how to love without selfish motivations or holding grudges. I think such pets are gifts from God, and all of God's gifts are good. I believe that we can see our pets in Heaven because I consider them part of God's touch in our lives. I do not understand Ron's logic that since animals cannot reason and therefore cannot be guilty and go to hell, they cannot go to Heaven. Isn't it possible that animals go to Heaven because they are innocent and, even those who were aggressive when alive will be tame as per end times?
  #18  
Old 13th December 2010, 03:44 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
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Originally Posted by garabandalg View Post
Isn't it possible that animals go to Heaven because they are innocent and, even those who were aggressive when alive will be tame as per end times?

From Heaven, which is timeless, we can know and enjoy our pets, seeing them as they were in their lives on earth. But Catholic teaching is that human persons have immortal souls, and the lower animals do not.

Animals cannot be Baptized, have no original sin since they are not descendents of Adam and Eve, have no Sacraments, have no free will, cannot merit grace or reward, and cannot knowingly freely choose an immoral act, they cannot sin. To claim that animals go to Heaven or to Hell requires the complete abandonment of many different teachings of the Catholic Faith.
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  #19  
Old 14th December 2010, 04:36 AM
garabandalg garabandalg is offline
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What if animals go to Heaven not on their own merit or accord given their lack of free will etc but as gifts from God to be enjoyed and used in paradise? Were there not animals in the Garden of Eden, which was paradise on earth? They did not merit being there, but were there merely to serve us. Just a thought.
  #20  
Old 14th December 2010, 04:39 AM
garabandalg garabandalg is offline
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Default What if animals are in Heaven not because they merit it but for the good to enjoy?

Perhaps animals go to Heaven not on their own merit, but as gifts for us to enjoy and use. Were there not animals in The Garden of Eden? They did not merit being there, but were there to serve us and to be enjoyed by us. Just a thought.

Last edited by garabandalg : 14th December 2010 at 04:39 AM. Reason: spelling mistake
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