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Studies in Religion

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Studies in Religion!! Jo Brandon!! Islam Many Islamic elders agree that abortion is prohibited when it involves the killing of a soul, but there exists debate over when the creation, or "ensoulment," of a foetus occurs. This is reflected in the fact that abortion laws of Islamic nations vary. Nations such as Tunisia, Turkey, and several former Soviet republics, have liberal abortion laws. Moreover, some Muslim nations, such as Bangladesh, permit "menstrual regulation" during the first eight weeks of pregnancy. * The majority of jurists from certain groups allow abortion before 120 days because they believe that the foetus is not ensouled until after this point. Some scholars allow abortion before 40 days, and others only until 80 days, and some prohibit it at all times. * For abortions within 120 days, many jurists think that acceptable reasons include: a woman's becoming pregnant while still nursing a baby; a woman's suffering poor health, such as a weak bladder or a disease or malfunctioning of the uterus; a risk of difficult labour that may require a caesarean section; or a woman being younger than 15. ...read more.


* Some ancient Hindu medical ethicists thought abortion was permissible - but not desirable - only under certain circumstances. For example, A founder of Hindu medicine wrote that when an early pregnancy posed a threat to health, abortion was the proper response. In the 17th century, another Hindu scholar wrote that abortion was a "useful remedy" for pregnant widows and women in poor health. * In India, abortion is permitted to protect a woman's life and her physical or mental health and in cases of fatal impairment. Injury to mental health is defined to encompass rape and contraceptive failure. A woman's actual or foreseeable environment may be taken into account when evaluating potential injury to her health. * In Nepal, the world's only official Hindu state, many women seek abortion despite the country's strict prohibition of the procedure. Nepal's maternal mortality ratio is 1,500 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births, one of the highest in the world. ...read more.


Judaism Within every branch of Judaism - Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform - there are many beliefs about when abortion is a lawful solution to an unwanted or dangerous pregnancy. Israel, the world's only official Jewish state, permits abortion on numerous grounds. * Within Conservative, Reform, and Reconstructionist branches of Judaism, some authorities view women who have terminated their pregnancy as an exercise of a woman's right to control her own destiny. Others approve of abortion on broad physical and mental health grounds. There is considerable agreement, even among Orthodox Jews, that abortion is a religious duty when the pregnant woman's life is in danger. * Abortion is permitted in Israel when a pregnancy poses a threat to a woman's life or to her physical or mental health. Abortion is also permitted when the pregnant woman is under 17 or over 40; the pregnancy is a result of a criminal act (rape), incest, or extra-marital relations; or there is a likelihood of fatal impairment. ...read more.

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