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The Souls of Animals [Paperback]

Gary Kowalski , Tom Regan , John Robbins
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
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Book Description

June 1 2007
In this revised edition of his celebrated book, Gary Kowalski grapples with the big spiritual questions around our relationship with animals in beautifully written vignettes. Kowalski explores how animals play, their sense of altruism, their selfless ability to love. By "de-sacrilizing" animals, he argues, we make ourselves less human. The book contains thoughtful ideas for rituals and ceremonies, spiritual guidance, and readings and poems to use for solace in case a pet dies. "If we are to keep our family homestead - Earth - safe for coming generations," writes Kowalski, "we must awaken to a new respect for the family of life."

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About the Author

Gary Kowalski is a Unitarian Universalist minister and author of several books, including Goodbye Friend: Healing Wisdom For Anyone Who Has Ever Lost a Pet and Science and the Search for God. He lives in Burlington, VT.

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By A Customer
Gary Kowalski is a Unitarian minister in Burlington, Vermont whose thinking and writing about animals and their spiritual lives is clear and powerful. To questions such as "Do Animals Experience Love?, "Are Animals Aware of Death?", Are Animals Conscious of Themselves?", "Do Animals Know Right From Wrong?" and "Do Animals Have Souls" Kowalski brings a rare blend of careful observation, personal insights, scientific understanding, and moral sensitivity. The Souls of Animals is a book that, chapter by chapter, teaches us to be more open to the possibility of our biological, psychological, and spiritual kinship with animals. In a university course that I teach on animal ethics students and I found this book provided a perspective and a "voice" that, too often, is discounted or neglected in ethical analyses and debates about humans' relationships and uses of animals. This book is pleasure to read and to think about.
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By Sara
I stumbled upon this book on accident. As an animal lover, it looked appealing to me though I expected it to be a generic, feel-good read. I was quite surprised! When I read the information that Kowalski had compiled, I cried. The chapters explore our questions on just how perceptive and emotional animals are. Do they feel a sense of love? Are they aware of death? Why do they play? When I read the stories that the author relates, such as the family of elephants who buried the dead and Koko the female lowland gorilla who learned American Sign Language, I was deeply moved. I had not purchased this book planning a lifestyle change but that is precisely what happened. Knowing what I do now about the intelligence and passion of animals, I am a vegetarian, living a happier, healthier life.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recomended Feb. 15 2003
Mr. Kowalski's book is excellent. If your're an animal lover or simply want a great read, you will enjoy this book. It's not just another man's opinion, but a well cited and researched work. Kowalski shows humans are not the only sentient beings on this planet.
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