Wednesday, June 01, 2005

The Pro-Soulers

As an overdue recognition of my guest "catzona" (aka Yehudster) I want to rant today about what he calls the "Pro-soulers." What does that mean you ask? Well, this should be the proper label for the "pro-lifers." I have to say, once I realized that what the "pro-lifers" are really protecting is the "soul," rather than the all-too-mortal life of the mother or child, I finally understood the other positions these politicians take. Silly me, I thought that the issue was reducing the number of abortions.

I was reading an article in Wired magazine about William Hurlburt, who has found, perhaps, an alternative stem cell approach. It is too bizarre to believe, until, again, you realize that the issue is preserving a soul. As Clive Thompson reports:

"Christian critics [of stem-cell research] have a more clear cut view [of when human life begins]. God endows every embryo with a soul at conception. So intentionally destroying an embryo is murder--even if it's only one-cell big."

Hurlburt proposes that we grow pseudo-embryos, e.g. tumors grown from an egg or sperm cell that don't have "the right balance of gene expression to create a fully integrated organism." So, to get around the soul issue, we grow tumors that we can harvest stem-cells from. These tumors grow into "a dense ball of teeth, hair, and skin, a ghastly grab bag of organs like some randomnly constructed Frankenstein." Well, ok fine.

What really fascinates me about this pro-soul approach is how they combine the doctrine of radical free will with the idea of God endowing embryos with souls. So, you see, God lets the soul come into existence after conception--poof. Then, you have to baptize the soul. But, once that process is over, sorry soul, you're on your own. No federal tax dollars (or state) should be allocated to ensure that you have enough to eat, or that you have healthcare. In fact, the quality of your education is really up to your own gumption. Fascinating, eh?

But, here is an issue that I would like to see a pro-souler Christian respond to: when a woman is raped or molested--and a embryo/soul emerges--then, how exactly was God involved there? You see, its the whole problem of evil. If God is wholly good, omniscient, and omnipotent, why does he allow such a horrendous act happen to a woman--that he could prevent--in order to bring another Christian soul into the world. I mean, afterall, it sounds a lot like when the Serbs raped Bosnian women to bring in more of their people. I would expect more from a God.