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Joseph Newcum wrote:

Hi guys,

I would like to start a dialog, one question at a time. My first question is:

  • Is there something called a soul that survives one's death?

Joseph

  { Is there something called a soul that survives one's death and, if so, how is it joined to the body? }

Mike replied:

Hi Joseph,

Thanks for the question. The Answer is Yes!

Check out my The Christian Basics set of web pages here.

I have one topic The Life of the Soul that addresses your question.  You are welcome to share it with family and friends.

Hope this helps,

Mike

Joseph replied:

Thanks!

  • How is the soul attached to a physical body?
  • Does God insert it, — at — or near — conception or does it arise spontaneously?

Joseph

Richard replied:

Hi, Joseph--

You can find some relevant material for your second question in the Catechism text that Mike quotes on his web site here.

In the category The Life of the Soul, it includes these passages:

[Paragraph] 365: The unity of soul and body is so profound that one has to consider the soul to be the "form" of the body i.e., it is because of its spiritual soul that the body made of matter becomes a living, human body; spirit and matter, in man, are not two natures united, but rather their union forms a single nature.

366: The Church teaches that every spiritual soul is created immediately by God - it is not "produced" by the parents - and also that it is immortal: it does not perish when it separates from the body at death, and it will be reunited with the body at the final Resurrection.

The concept that the soul is the form of the body — its life and structure-giving principle -- implies that the body cannot live without it. Therefore it comes into existence when the body comes into existence.

Also note, from paragraph 366, the doctrine that God creates the soul immediately: that is, directly, and not through some intermediary process. Thus the soul does not come into existence spontaneously but is created in a direct act of God.

I hope this helps.

By the way, if you haven't had a chance to become familiar with the Catechism of the Catholic Church yet, it's easy to get a used copy cheaply on Amazon and you can even read it for free on-line at:

Another useful resource is the on-line Catholic Encyclopedia article on the history of the concept of the soul.

Best wishes —

— Richard Chonak

John replied:

Hi Joseph,

The human soul is created by God at the moment of conception in the human being.

Hope this helps,

John

Joseph replied:

Thanks again!

  • Is there any act someone can perform on another that would annihilate, disintegrate, vaporize, or otherwise cause a soul to cease to exist while it is bound to a body?

    I am not concerned with the death of the body, only of the soul.

Joe

Mary Ann replied:

Hi Joseph,

The soul is created immortal, indestructible! We live forever, and nothing can change that.

We have the power to decide whether we live forever in love, joy and light, or live forever in hatred, sorrow and darkness.

Mary Ann

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