Faith/Spirituality Forum: Soul of twins joined at birth
Soul of twins joined at birth QUESTION from LARRY R JAUBERT on September 20, 2002 My question is based on a recent news story which said that doctors had surgically separated twins which had been joined at the head who had shared the same brain.
I think it is correct to say that God gives the soul to the human embreo at conception, or am I mistaken and it instead is given to the body at birth? Are twins who are joined at the head sharing one brain given one soul, and do they perceive as one being perceives prior to being separated at surgery? Or do they have two separate souls and consequently perceive as two separate beings even though they share one brain in common to both? Or perhaps, do they share some perceptions in common even though they might have separate souls prior to surgery?
After surgery separating them at the brain, do they perceive as separate beings and have separate souls, or does one not have a soul? If they had one soul prior to the surgery, assuming they now both have souls after the surgery, did God split the single soul between them or give one of them the missing soul?
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on September 24, 2002 Dear Mr. Jaubert:
Siamese Twins are two individuals, and thus as two persons each have their own soul.
God ensouls a each person individually and uniquely at the moment of conception.
Some of your questions about the specifics of the twins perception and such are medical issues that are beyond my knowledge. But we do know that they are two individuals and thus theologically they each have their own soul from the moment of their conception (which is before they were joined together later in gestation).
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