Sunday, May 31, 2009

Do Pets Have Souls?

These are three of the five fur babies that we had. The one with his back to us is Longfellow, the black and white is Molly (Molli-licious!) and my orange tabby, Buster Crabbe.

It's Longfellow, my silky as ribbon, sweet-natured, form-fitting, Bengal, I wanted to post about; he was struck and killed by a passing motorist this past week.

This question has been asked many times before, and brilliant theologians who studied The Word and quote Scripture will unequivocally say no, only humans have souls.

But still I wonder. Our other cats bring in the occasional mouse or snake (EEKS!!). This past autumn I watched Longfellow sort through a pile of autumn leaves. He found one the one that he wanted and brought it into the house and presented his precious prize to me. And this winter he found a child's lost blue mitten and sat on the deck railing, holding the mitten in his mouth, amber eyes peering into the kitchen window,willing me to turn around and see him, waiting patiently to be let in. At night, he was my snuggle kitty. He would curl into a tight silken ball in the crook of my neck, singing his lullaby in deep contentment, velvet nose in my ear, body vibrating with his song, until we both fell asleep.

The last time I saw him, he was was leaping through one of my straggly flower beds, chasing a yellow butterfly, oblivious to the world around him, only knowing that the butterfly might be the finest treasure yet.


  1. Sorry about Longfellow....We do get so attached to our cuddly friends

  2. Awwww heart just melted with your description of your dear friend and just look at those three little 'souls'. Do they have souls? I don't know theologically.... A church or two in my community have one sunday a year devoted to bring in your non-human friends for a blessing...and people line up with their cats, dogs, birds etc. I am not quite there...yet this I do dear companion Radar and I are 'in sync' soooo very much. I know he knows well in advance just when things are going to happen....he came to bedside just moments before we had a call about my mother's heart attack years ago and then, this year, before she passed away he wouldn't stop snuggling with me days before....unusually possessive and protective he would growl at anyone who came near me. So ... there is certainly a place for these dear ones in our lives....scripture or no...and I look at all of nature and feel a kinship with all creatures, the golden butterfly that Longfellow enjoyed his moments chasing, the crinkly nose of the yard mouse as it twitches nervously at our 'shoo shoo', the bear that stops by my ravine out back...the birds that built their first love nest in my deck rafters....we are all part of God's creation...we all have a 'place' in the world which He created n'est pas? So I am thinking....

  3. Gin, thanks for coming by! You know I'm such a softie for animals and kids and... We're saying no more dogs, no more cats... we don't mean that. There will also be room for the fur babies in our home.

    Trish, I think you're right; we are all part of God's creation and therefore we share His divine creativity. I think that is the synergy that we feel when we become particularly bonded with a pet. As much as I love my pets and make allowances and sacrifices for them, I'm not sure that I would take them to church for a blessing. Then again, it's not unusual to bless a herd, or to bless a house.

    My head is spinning. We'll have to talk more of this sometime, I hope.