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Does all life have value? Religion vs animals!

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posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:11 PM
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Here's something I have noticed that I will ask in a completly anecdotal way.
It seems to me that many non religious people I know have more respect for life ( other than human) than the people I know that are members of established religion. That is, the people that are instablished Christian churches seem to react with, "it's ONLY an animal".
Why?
I'm not religious at all, but if I were, I'd assume that all creation belongs to God, and God bestowed life and that I should respect that, animal or human.
So, I ask, how do you feel about this?
Do you think humans have "dominion" over animals?
That animals have no souls?
I can't quite reconcile the faith coupled with disregard for animals and life in general.
Thoughts?




posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:31 PM
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Originally posted by OldDragger
It seems to me that many non religious people I know have more respect for life ( other than human) than the people I know that are members of established religion. That is, the people that are instablished Christian churches seem to react with, "it's ONLY an animal".
Why?


I believe this is a gross generalization of both Christians and non-Christians. I know a theistic Satanist who uses animals as part of the weekly or bi-weekly sacrifices. I know a Christian who cannot help posting animal advocacy every day on her Facebook to promote veganism.

This being said, I've heard from fellow Christians that "it's only an animal" to the exist that they believe animals don't have souls. Do they have souls? I don't know, but I know they experience a lot of emotion. That's reason enough for me not to enact any unnecessary cruelties.


Originally posted by OldDragger
I'm not religious at all, but if I were, I'd assume that all creation belongs to God, and God bestowed life and that I should respect that, animal or human.
So, I ask, how do you feel about this?


I agree and could not have said it better than myself.


Originally posted by OldDragger
Do you think humans have "dominion" over animals?


Dominion (meaning being in charge of), stewardship, responsibility for, care for, all the same words. The Bible makes clear how important compassion is. Nowhere I've read in the Bible do I see taking delight in animal suffering.


Originally posted by OldDragger
That animals have no souls?


I'd like to hear the argument that says they do not. I have questions for those who would make this claim.


Originally posted by OldDragger
I can't quite reconcile the faith coupled with disregard for animals and life in general.
Thoughts?


I don't think you should reconcile in this matter, nor do I see Christianity as a faith that has a disregard for animals and life in general. Hope this helps.

pray, train, study, play,
God bless.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:31 PM
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reply to post by OldDragger
 



I'm not religious at all, but if I were, I'd assume that all creation belongs to God, and God bestowed life and that I should respect that, animal or human.

I completely agree with you. Humans should respect all of God's creation because everything is his.


Do you think humans have "dominion" over animals?

Yes. Humans do have "dominion" over the animals. "Dominion" more or less means authority; we're basically just a notch or two higher than they are mainly because we're cerated in God's image and have his breath of life in us. That's not to say though that we can treat God's creation however we feel. We need to take care of it and be good stewards.


That animals have no souls?

From my perspective, this is an unknown. The Bible doesn't speak to animals having souls or not. I guess that we'll find out one day though! Them having souls or not shouldn't change the way that we act though.

I remember, when I was a young Christian, I had the, "ahh, they're just animals!" mentality. I have grown and matured though and don't hold this attitude any more. Unfortunately, many Christians do and this is sad to me. I think they hold this belief because of a lack of knowledge of what the Bible says.

My point of view changed through talking with Christian friends of mine, specifically about this issue, and reading the Bible, in particular Jonah. The very last verse of Jonah really hit me one day when I was reading it.


And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?


(Some translations translate "cattle" as "animals".)

That verse really hit me. God sent Jonah to preach to Nineveh. The Ninevites repented due to Jonah's preaching and Jonah threw a sissy-fit. God then comes and says to Jonah, "Dude! You're upset that I didn't just smite people that you don't like, although they repented of their sin! There are 120,000 people there and a lot of animals! Grow up!" God spared Nineveh not only because of the humans there but the animals as well. Animals must have some significance in God's eyes.

And if they're significant in God's eyes, they should be significant to me as well.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:35 PM
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reply to post by saint4God
 



I'd like to hear the argument that says they do not. I have questions for those who would make this claim.

I think that those that advocate a "soulless animal" position in Christianity would point to only man having the breath of life blown into him. They would say that this "breath of life" is a soul, which in turn is what makes us different than the animals.

I think that they would point to Revelation, the recreated Earth specifically, pointing out that there doesn't appear to be much animal activity in the eternal state.

I for one hope that there will be animals!



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:39 PM
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any pet owner will tell you that thier pet displays emotions and has a personality, in my opinion this leads me to believe that they do have souls.
not all religions feel the same about animals some hold them sacred so lumping in all religions as you have done kind of undermines the validity of your entire post title..

my dog has nightmares everynight i have to wake him up because he whimpers in his sleep, so again in my opinion if it has emotions , a personality and dreams(imagination), then it must have a soul.

~meathead

edit: there to thier

[edit on 3-6-2010 by Mike Stivic]



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:40 PM
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reply to post by octotom
 


Hmmmm.
What is the difference between having life and having a soul?
Life is conciousness, of at least something isn't it?
Animals have conciousness, life and they die.
I see "soul" as meaning "life".



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:43 PM
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reply to post by OldDragger
 



What is the difference between having life and having a soul?

I think that a soul would be an immaterial part of you that lives on after you die. In my opinion, it would be possible to be a live without a soul.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:44 PM
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No kidding this is general and I have "lumped in" things!
Re-read my OP

"Here's something I have noticed that I will ask in a completly anecdotal way. "

PLEASE, don't get all hung up that I am generalizing! I just want your thoughts!
Thanks



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:45 PM
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There are many religions worldwide that place great spiritual merit upon our animal populations. Such as the American Indians and most eastern religions and philosophies.

We are obviously not good stewards to our animal brothers and sisters. We are just simply at the top of the food chain. Sometimes humans become victim to animals.

All life is important IMHO, but one has to eat. As humans, we try to humanize animals. We have no idea how animals think r communicate in any great way.

I'm horrified by humanity and its awful treatment of the animal kingdom. Not everyone here follows Christianity. However, the bible does say the lion shall lay down with the lamb.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:49 PM
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reply to post by OldDragger
 


Religion sometimes leads to a separation of man and nature when really we are just a part of nature. We are just an animal, by definition, our genetics, our life cycle, our behavior, all prove the obvious - we are animals.

Religion can also lead to the idea that we have "dominion" over the animals given by some magical sky being (or set of them), when really we should have equilibrium with nature, not dominance.

Some religious folks CAN and DO respect nature though, there are plenty who appreciate the beauty and majesty of nature and try to reduce their negative impact on the planet.

So while religion can lead to belittling animals and devaluing other forms of life it doesn't always.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:49 PM
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I have heard people refer to themselves as special in the whole scheme of things. And then you see how they behave, and they don't seem so "special". I think animals should be cared for, they are emotional beings, therefore, with souls. To me, there is no such thing as "just an animal". Our pets are the best example of unconditional love, and if there is an afterlife, I want all my pets I ever had there with me, or it wouldn't be a good place.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:53 PM
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JUST an animal??? Could you imagine a world without animals? They are a unique and wondrous thing to behold, to treasure. They think, they feel, they love. Do they have souls? I would imagine that like humans, they too pass on to a different and better life when their life here is ended.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:53 PM
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Hi Octotom, I always enjoy your posts, good to see you here today. I'd like to highlight the following and comment:


Originally posted by octotom

And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand from their left, and also much cattle?


(Some translations translate "cattle" as "animals".)

That verse really hit me. God sent Jonah to preach to Nineveh. The Ninevites repented due to Jonah's preaching and Jonah threw a sissy-fit. God then comes and says to Jonah, "Dude! You're upset that I didn't just smite people that you don't like, although they repented of their sin! There are 120,000 people there and a lot of animals! Grow up!" God spared Nineveh not only because of the humans there but the animals as well. Animals must have some significance in God's eyes.

And if they're significant in God's eyes, they should be significant to me as well.


This is a real eye-opener, I'd read this before though I'd never thought of it that way. Although it could be argued that he was concerned more of the animals being resources for others to use, I think your understanding is more to the point while sustaining the question of "why would God create a living being who's feelings are to be disregarded?" Moreover, "why would God give us these feelings of compassion for animals if they were unnecessary?"



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:54 PM
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Hi

I think humans take more credit then they deserve and are not so special after all.

A few days ago I created a thread on animal intelligence. I think you will like it.
Humans. Not so special after all ! Intelligence in animals and evolution ?

Kind regards ~ SK



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:55 PM
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I am not religious but I truly believe animals have great value and they have souls. My dog knows me and my needs better than most of my friends and family members, he consoles me when I am down or lonely and ask nothing in return but my love and care. All creatures should be respected and cared for. My heart breaks when I hear of an animal being abused or neglected.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:57 PM
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Originally posted by snowspirit
I have heard people refer to themselves as special in the whole scheme of things. And then you see how they behave, and they don't seem so "special". I think animals should be cared for, they are emotional beings, therefore, with souls. To me, there is no such thing as "just an animal". Our pets are the best example of unconditional love, and if there is an afterlife, I want all my pets I ever had there with me, or it wouldn't be a good place.


Right on the nail. If my animals don't go to heaven, then neither do I.

2nd line.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:57 PM
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Originally posted by octotom
I think that those that advocate a "soulless animal" position in Christianity would point to only man having the breath of life blown into him.


Clearly animals breathe too.


Originally posted by octotom
They would say that this "breath of life" is a soul, which in turn is what makes us different than the animals.


Ah, now we're interpreting, which can be a dangerous thing.


Originally posted by octotom
I think that they would point to Revelation, the recreated Earth specifically, pointing out that there doesn't appear to be much animal activity in the eternal state.

I for one hope that there will be animals!


Dogs are mentioned. Also beforehand as well: "At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores and longing to eat what fell from the rich man's table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores." - Luke 16:20-22. Re-reading that last sentence, if dogs did not matter, animals of pure soulless instinct, why mention it?



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 05:58 PM
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Originally posted by Mike Stivic
my dog has nightmares everynight i have to wake him up because he whimpers in his sleep, so again in my opinion if it has emotions , a personality and dreams(imagination), then it must have a soul.


I do the same and follow the line of reasoning too.



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 06:01 PM
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If you spend time watching, you will see animals, birds, and even fish expressing them selves and exibiting all of the full range of emotions
at one time or an other just like people.

IMHO
To think that man has the right of dominion (to LORD it) over these animals, or other men, women, or children, or people, of a different type in some way because of a religious dogma...

Why do they call a group of religious people a flock?
why did Kissenger call soldiers "poor dumb animals"
why is the expression 'BRUTE" force
just wondering...



posted on Jun, 3 2010 @ 06:01 PM
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Another question.
We all seem to be talking about, dogs, cats, ...pets.
How about a wild fish in the sea? An insect? A pest!
It always strikes me when I go to a zoo: the people that look at the animals-"it's so ugly" or "they are so dumb" type comments.
I've NEVER heard a sermon or cleric speak to a church about this!
I've never heard anything even close from Evangelical Christianity!
Please don't interpret this as about cruelty to animals, I guess I'm talking about indifference to animals lives.
Isn't EVERY living thing entitled to live it's life?

[edit on 3-6-2010 by OldDragger]



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