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Ethics

Animals Have Limited Potential For Education

Animals know their ways of life by instinct. These innate inspirations, which manifest themselves as instincts, drive them toward a limited state of perfection. However, some animals such as dogs, horses, elephants, monkeys, dolphins, foxes and bears possess a higher status of intelligence. They could be trained to protect the herds, the police, and to purchase commodities, and to perform circus performances. We have all seen such extraordinary performances in the films and elsewhere.

But, it is to be noted that the sphere of animal performances is highly restricted because their capabilities are narrower than those of man. For this reason, however hard we try to train them, they will never be able to solve mathematical problems, analyze the inside of the atom, make space-ships to be sent to the Mars or to the Jupiter, to discover medical remedies for hard-to-cure diseases, to cure TB and cancer sufferers and finally to carry on surgical operations on hearts, brains and kidneys.

This is only man who can, through right education, discover everywhere and solve problems and manifest his capabilities and make himself "God's vicegerent on the earth".

Adapted from: "Imam 'Ali's First Treatise on The Islamic Ethics and Education" by: "Zainol Aabideen Qorbani Lahiji"