Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States
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Are the mind and soul one and the same, or distinct and separate from one another? Further, if they are distinct, do animals have a mind?

The mind and the soul are distinct from one another. Man is body, spirit and soul. St Paul says, "May your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ" (1 Th 5:23). The soul gives life to the body, while the spirit gives a  person life with God. Therefore, animals have souls not spirits like humans. Our spirits are immortal, whereas animals have no immortal spirits. The soul gives life to the body, "For the life of the flesh is in the blood" (Lev 17:11,14).

The soul sometimes means the whole man. St. Peter, speaking about Noah and his family saved from the flood said, "While the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water" (1 Pet 3:20).

Sometimes also the word soul is used to mean the spirit "And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell" (Mt 10:28) i.e. spirit and body.

God has provided man with many capabilities, each has its functions, strengths and powers. Among these  are: the mind, the conscience, the will, the senses, etc.

The mind is defined as: the intellectual or rational faculty in man; the understanding; the intellect; the power that conceives, judges, or reasons "Let every man be fully convinced in his own mind" (Rom 14:5). The mind is a function of the brain. Animals have a mind with very limited capabilities due to the anatomy of their brain.
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