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Examine and comment on the moral and religious issues raised by euthanasia.

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Examine and comment on the moral and religious issues raised by euthanasia. Euthanasia is a subject that is considered to be extremely difficult as many people have different understandings of what euthanasia means and a lot of people would argue that it is morally wrong to take life if it has been requested by a patient. It is questioned if a doctor should be able to "stop the pain," however when is euthanasia acceptable and when is it murder? Moral issues such as rights and the ability to "die with dignity" oppose those of religious issues like people "playing God" and the fact that many religions, Christianity in particular, believe in the sanctity of life. The term 'euthanasia' (or 'mercy killing') comes from the Greek word meaning 'good death.' Euthanasia essentially involves giving an easy death to all those suffering intolerably. However, it is thought that this is quite problematic in today's society due to the increasing amount of medicine that can prolong the cause of life whether the patient wants to be alive or not. Dying with the assistance of others can be either active or passive as well as being voluntary or non-voluntary. ...read more.


It could be argued that medical science had not reached this highly advanced state and they probably shouldn't be considered as relevant. Many Christians would argue that God gave life and only he has the right to remove it. It is argued that all life is sacred no matter how unhappy or painful that life may be. God has entrusted humans with their own lives and it is a sin to take it away. Another point argued is that euthanasia is against nature and it is a human's natural instinct to survive so it goes against the laws of nature. Most doctors are extremely unhappy about having to let a life stop as they take a Hippocratic Oath (names after Hippocrates, the first doctor,) that states they will do everything in there power to preserve life and save people when possible. Doctors argue they cannot go against there promises. Other religions such as the Jewish and the Islamic faiths also agree. The Islamic religion's holy book, the Qur'an, instructs Muslims to "Destroy not yourselves. Surely Allah is ever merciful to you." Another example of the kind of thing the Jewish believe is that "one must struggle until the last breath of life. ...read more.


However, the only difference between this and murder is that it was meant to be for the good of the patient and they would be better off dead. This was also supposed to be for the good of the Aryan race. The Nazis killed an estimated quarter of a million from using involuntary euthanasia against the handicapped. The Nazis justified themselves by stating it was an "act of mercy," however the handicapped people and there families did not agree with this. It is considered that by making euthanasia legal in this country it could spark off a similar situation again and minorities or poor people may be targeted to make Britain "A better place." To conclude, although many religious groups are against the act of euthanasia, I believe that morally, it would be much worse to let a human being suffer than to obey a religious teaching. I would consider it as a less of two great evils. However I also feel that euthanasia should not be made legal as it would pressure many people and there could be a repeat of T4 programme and although I agree that every life is sacred I feel that any God, whether it Islamic, Christian or Jewish gave us free will and we should be able to use this to help a suffering family member or patient. ...read more.

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