728. Is destruction a law of nature?
“Everything must be destroyed so that it may be renewed. What you call destruction is only a transformation to renew and improve living beings.”
a) So the instinct of destruction was given to living beings for providential purposes?
“God’s creatures are instruments used to accomplish Divine plans. Living beings destroy each other for food and this maintains a natural balance of reproduction, which could otherwise become excessive, also it utilizes the materials of their external envelopes. However, only this envelope is destroyed, which is only an accessory and not the essential part of a thinking being. The essential part is the intelligent principle, which is indestructible and developed over the course of many metamorphoses.”
729. If destruction is necessary for the regeneration of beings, why does nature surround them with the means of self-preservation and conservation?
“So that their destruction only happens at the right time. Premature destruction delays the development of the intelligent principle. This is why God has given each being the desire to live and reproduce.”
730. Since death leads to a better life, delivers us from the difficulties and suffering of our present existence, and we should anticipate it rather than fear it, why do human beings have an instinctive fear of death?
“We have said that humans should try to prolong their lives to accomplish their tasks. This is why God has given them the instinct of self-preservation. This instinct sustains them through all their trials, without which they would often succumb to discouragement. The inner voice telling them to prevent death also tells them that they may still do more for their advancement. Every danger that threatens them is a warning to profit from the relief God grants them. As humans are ingrates, they are more likely to thank their stars than their Creator.”
731. Why has nature provided agents of destruction alongside the means of self-preservation? “The disease and the remedy go hand in hand. As we have already told you, this is done to maintain equilibrium and serve as a counterbalance.”
732. Is destruction necessary in all worlds?
“It is proportionate to the material state of each world. In worlds of higher physical and moral purity it is no longer needed. In worlds more advanced than yours, the conditions of existence are completely different.”
733. Will destruction always be necessary for human beings on Earth?
“The need for destruction decreases in humans as their spirits obtain control over matter. This is why intellectual and moral development is always accompanied by an aversion to destruction.”
734. Do humans currently have an unlimited right to destroy animals?
“This right is limited to providing for their food and safety. No form of abuse can be considered a right.”
735. What should we think of destruction that goes beyond the limits of needs and safety, such as hunting, when its sole purpose is to kill merely for sport?
“It is a predominance of brutality over the spiritual nature. Any destruction that goes beyond the limits of your needs is a violation of God’s law. Animals only kill based on necessity, but human beings destroy without cause despite having free will. They must account for abusing the freedom granted to them when they yield to inferior instincts from which they should be free.”
736. Do people who are excessively conscientious in regard to killing animals earn some sort of special merit?
“While the sentiment in itself is praiseworthy, it turns into an abuse when excessive. Furthermore, other types of abuses offset its merit. They feel a superstitious fear rather than true gentleness.”