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Women probably don't have souls

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Landover Baptist Creation Scientist, Dr. Fred Neiman, announced findings related to his research into the female soul early this week. "The absence of either salvation or condemnation for women finds extensive support in the Word of God." He reported. "Jesus said that the sole reason God created women in the first place was to provide company and service to men (1 Corinthians 11:9), God determined that men would be lonely living alone, so he created women purely to keep men company and serve their needs (Genesis 2:18-22). Women are therefore completely subordinate to men (1 Corinthians 11:3). It stands to reason, though, that once men enter the Kingdom of Heaven, they will be one with God, and will no longer be lonely and in need of mortal companionship. Thus, the reason behind having women will no longer exist. Women, like the members of the animal kingdom, will fall by the wayside."

Dr. Neiman went on to say that, "once men reunite with their maker, they will no longer be burdened with the care of women. After all, women were inferior creations from the start. Women are fond of self-indulgence (Isaiah 32:9-11). They are silly and easily led into error (2 Timothy 3:6). They are subtle and deceitful (Proverbs 7:10; Ecclesiastes 7:26). They are zealous in promoting superstition and idolatry (Jeremiah 7:18; Ezekiel 13:17, 23). And they are active in instigating to iniquity (Numbers 31:15-16; 1 Kings 21:25; Nehemiah 13:26). It was the inherent weakness of women that led them to be deceived by Satan (Genesis 3:1-6; 2 Corinthians 11:3; 1 Timothy 2:14). Consequently, women were cursed from the start (Genesis 3:16). There is simply no room in heaven for such flawed and inadequate beings."

 

Pastor Deacon Fred warned the congregation that there was no reason to be alarmed. "Dr. Neiman's conclusions still need to be formalized," he assured. "I am certain that our team of religious experts will find some way around these Scriptures." Some of the women present were visibly shaken by the report. A teary eyed Sister Taffy Crockett said through choked sobs, "I've heard of colored women not having souls... but me? NO! This is outrageous!"

 

Head Pastor, Rev. Ebeneezer Smith, had some comforting words for the ladies of Landover. "I personally want to assure all female members of this church that until we examine Dr. Neiman's research to our complete satisfaction, consider yourselves saved."

 

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I did forget it was the joke section. But rather or not it was fabricated it is still hilarious.

 

Just the fact that it seemed plausible says something in its self.

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the belief that women had no soul had been part of Church doctrine for many centuries. Jews believe their souls are totally different than the souls of Gentiles, which are more like the souls of animals. Because they are religions in the mode of ignorance, they have no concept of soul and spirituality.

 

"I am certain that our team of religious experts will find some way around these Scriptures."

 

may I suggest the study of Bhagavad Geeta?

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From a practicing Catholic:

 

The belief that the Church once taught that women had no souls is a common one. Even I believed it once! While I was in college, I read a book which claimed that the bishops at the Council of Nicea in 323 AD had a heated debate on this very issue. They took a vote on it, and the "pro-souls" side won - by one vote! I later found that this is but one version of a rumor which has made the rounds for centuries and taken many different forms in the process (like the form you cited, which claims that the "soulless women" idea was a Catholic doctrine up until the seventeenth century).

 

But when one traces the rumor back to its source, one finds that someone, somewhere, made a very big mistake. The actual historical event which became the basis for this rumor did not happen at the Council of Nicea or any other ecumenical council in Church history, but in a local Synod in France in 585 AD. The account can be found in the book The History of the Franks by Gregory of Tours (which I have read; you can probably get it from an academic library or through Interloan at a public library).

 

This is what really happened:

 

During a break between sessions at the Synod, one of the bishops there expressed to his fellow bishops his personal belief that the Latin word homo (mankind) does not include women. Immediately every other bishop present objected to his statement, pointing out that the Vulgate (the Latin translation of the Scriptures used at that time) uses the word homo to refer to both Adam and Eve in Genesis 5:2.

 

That verse reads: "(God) created them male and female; and blessed them: and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created" (Douay Version, emphasis mine). Adam, besides being the proper name applied to the father of our race, is the Hebrew word for "mankind" or "humanity" (as opposed to iysh, which refers to a male human being). When Saint Jerome translated the Bible into Latin he rendered Adam here with the Latin equivalent Homo. And the bishops at the French Synod used his Vulgate translation to prove their fellow bishop wrong in stating that women are not included in the word homo.

 

Having sufficiently refuted that notion, the discussion ended.

 

This whole debate - which was not part of the actual Synod itself - still came out in favor of the humanity of women. Not only that, but nowhere in this entire episode does anyone mention the question of whether or not women have souls! This was a later misrepresentation of the proceedings which, unfortunately, has been widely disseminated and believed by many who do not have the time to trace the rumor back to its source.

 

You see, no Church council ever discussed, debated or ruled on the question of women having souls, because the question was never in doubt. The Church has always believed that women have souls, which is why she has always baptized women! The Sacrament of Baptism infuses the human soul with grace. If women have no souls, why baptize them? They would be unable to receive grace or become members of the Church. The very fact that Mother Church has always baptized women shows that the Church has always believed that they have souls!

 

And what about the Saints? Throughout the centuries, the Catholic Church has canonized both men and women as saints. If women have no souls, then they cannot go to heaven after death, since it is the soul that goes to heaven. How could there be female saints in heaven if women have no souls? So the fact that the Church has always - even in the earliest centuries of her existence - recognized female saints also shows that Catholicism has always believed that women have souls.

 

And what about the greatest Saint of all: the holy Mother of God and ever-Virgin Mary? The one who sings in Scripture "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior" (Luke 1:46-47)! If the Church once believed that women were soulless, then she would have to have taught that Mary was also soulless. But she has never taught that, for Scripture clearly teaches that Mary has a soul (Luke 1:46; 2:35)! (And contrary to a popular misconception, the Catholic Church knows Scripture very well; after all, her bishops finalized the New Testament canon in the fifth century.)

 

"Belial", somewhere along the line someone told you an untruth about the Catholic Faith. I don't blame you for believing it, since you had no other information to counter it. The person who told you that may have been totally sincere, but he or she was still wrong. Now that their error has been corrected, I urge you to embrace the truth that the Church has always taught the existence of women's souls.

 

Oh, by the way, it's interesting that you mentioned Saint Thomas Aquinas, since he himself believed that women have souls! Aquinas thought that God infuses a soul into a baby girl on the eightieth day after conception. Now, that "eightieth day" part was his personal opinion, not official Catholic dogma. Now that we know more about conception, the Church today believes that God infuses a soul into every child, male or female, at the moment of conception. Though he was wrong about the timing, Aquinas still believed - along with all his medieval contemporaries - that women have souls.

 

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Guest Humanimalien

 

Oh, by the way, it's interesting that you mentioned Saint Thomas Aquinas, since he himself believed that women have souls! Aquinas thought that God infuses a soul into a baby girl on the eightieth day after conception. Now, that "eightieth day" part was his personal opinion, not official Catholic dogma. Now that we know more about conception, the Church today believes that God infuses a soul into every child, male or female, at the moment of conception. Though he was wrong about the timing, Aquinas still believed - along with all his medieval contemporaries - that women have souls.

 

"[H]e was wrong about the timing," according to Catholicism; what is their argument or evidence for atman (soul)? Is there any means greater than incontrovertible conjecture and faith to express the assumption that atman is Brahman (soul is Ultimate Reality)? Buddhism allows uncertainty and isn't forever preoccupied with the outcome; meditation is its baptism and the gentle process of change has grace in subtle, persistent, optimistic benevolence. Does the Catholic church consider that a hellish state of mind or a path which leads to hell at death?

 

The bastardization of Christian philosophy, which was as ubiquitous throughout my childhood as sweets and other poisons, didn't impart much except that Jesus loved all children (of all four colors) and I was given an unearned advantage by fortuitous birth as a (categorically) white male in One Nation Under God, with white males as His direct subordinates. It was really easy to renounce the Mother Church as the Ultimate Authority, and I found that I can experience joy in the philosophical and theatrical rituals of Christianity and other traditions.

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