These comments are in reference to: Toward a Theology of Animals
To answer your questions, I am looking at what humans do, and like chimps, we are or have evolved into omnivores.
[neh-fesh khah-yaw] is an undifferentiated soul/body paradigm in all animals. Rather than a Cartesian dualism of substances soul and body, it is a paradigm of polarities that ignores reason as the crucial point of spirituality which makes humans special with divine rights. The polarity, for example, one has physical intentions such as to drink. Your body demands it. But you have spiritual intentions such as fasting which denies the physical intention to drink. The soul overrides the body or the body overrides the soul as when we eat too much. Rather than two substances connected by a gland or the brain, all finite being is a paradigm with polarities of soul and body that gestalt into an essence and mind. When the bodily pole dominates as with reptiles, instincts to strike or attack are uncontrollable. Their material polarity is set by the divine evolution.
With elephants for example, they morn their dead, show love and kindness, live in a social network, and show spirituality. They are not set on attack or strike. They can even enjoy painting and music. The social dialectic is not like Hegel’s dialectic; rather, it is a reflection among finite beings.
For example, it is necessary to activate virtue in children with language and concrete examples. Teachers can require children to take tests about virtues such as charity and recite verses, yet when the teacher is seen removing part of the money by the children, the social dialect shifts from the ideal to the concrete or hypocrisy in this example.
The social dialectic is necessary to activate the structure of the soul such as language, virtue or vice, and so on.