Letter: Who decides which animals have ‘souls’?

Editor: Re: ‘There is no humane way of taking a life,’ (the Times, May 24). The letter was in response to a previous Times article, describing how horse meat had been taken off the menu at a local restaurant.

I respect and accept Maha Kali for their decision to refrain from consuming meat in their diet — although such was not exactly made clear in their comments.

However, I do take exception to the precepts that animals have souls, that they mourn, love and think or that they fear and suffer.

Inarguably, these are all qualities we humans assign to ourselves. Yet, to suppose that such higher level functions exist across the scope of all life is a major leap.

Does this mean that spiders, flies, worms and grubs or lizards, snakes and beetle are likewise endowed with such feelings and concerns? If not, why not? Are they not also animals? Also, if not, who gets to decide which creatures have the capacity to love, mourn and experience fear, let alone possess a soul?

to take this point to an extreme, since plants are also ‘alive,’ shouldn’t we also refrain from consuming them? Perhaps their suffering is more severe than the creatures described by Maha Kali. Perhaps a plant’s screams, brought on by harvesting and consumption are outside our human ear’s ability to hear, listen and drive the needed change away from such horrid practice.

Sorry if I’ve offended anyone, but simply put, we each may choose many of the paths that make up a life.

If you choose to believe that all animals have a soul, then you must accept that others among us believe differently. More to the point, and is is important, these differences do not make those who believe them bad, wrong or mean. They are just capable of deciding for themselves what path is best for their life.

I’m glad Maha Kali loves animals — so do I — and I also enjoy meat in my diet, too.

Stephen Ross,