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What is euthanasia?

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Introduction

Christianity Coursework Title 2 a)(i)What is euthanasia? Euthanasia is often described as "assisted suicide", but this is not technically correct as there are many different forms of euthanasia. Euthanasia is an action that brings forward the time of death because a person is ill or in a lot of pain and dying will relieve them of the pain, also known as mercy killing. This is usually done with the person's knowledge or in some cases relatives or doctors may perform euthanasia without the person knowing. There are many types of euthanasia, for example Voluntary Euthanasia. This is when euthanasia is performed because the dying person has asked for it. An example of this is a woman dying of cancer asking doctors to give her a drug that will kill her. There is also Involuntary Euthanasia. This is when euthanasia is performed without the dying person being told. This is usually carried out when the patient is in a coma. There is also Passive Euthanasia. This is when doctors give painkilling drugs to ease the patient's pain but do nothing to save the patient. There is also Active Euthanasia and this is when doctors give a patient a drug to take away the pain knowing that the drug will also kill the patient. Both these types can be combined with Voluntary or Involuntary Euthanasia to form Passive Voluntary Euthanasia, Active Voluntary Euthanasia, Passive Involuntary Euthanasia and Active Involuntary Euthanasia. ...read more.

Middle

"Love your neighbour as yourself," (Mark 12:31). Again this teaching involves love so depending on whether you look at euthanasia as a loving action or not depends on whether you think this teaching supports or is against euthanasia. These teachings show that there are those against and those for euthanasia, depending on whether euthanasia is looked upon as an act of love. The most confusing contradiction is that of the Ten Commandments and Corinthians. Corinthians tells you to love one another while the Ten Commandments say you should not kill and therefore killing is a sin. A teaching from Peter clears up the confusion and is possibly the most important teaching that can be used in a discussion about euthanasia. "Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins," (1 Peter 4:8). This teaching explains that if euthanasia is performed for a loving reason then it can not be a sin. The killing may be a sin but the love shown in the action covers this sin making the action right. b) Explain how Christians may respond to the question of euthanasia There are many responses to the question of euthanasia, and the responses of a Christian sometimes depend on how they interpret the Bible. There are many teachings in the Bible which talk about life, especially the ending of a life. ...read more.

Conclusion

Christians may disagree with this statement because it is sometimes the loving action to relieve someone of their pain. They also know that as they have done a loving thing God will forgive them (Peter). Christians may disagree with this because the Ten Commandments state that killing is a sin and because the Ten Commandments were the first word of God bought to earth they must be obeyed. Other may also disagree because sometimes euthanasia is not always done with the patient's consent and so it is not really euthanasia it is murder. I disagree with this statement but still think euthanasia is wrong in some cases. I believe that if a person has asked to die they are obviously in pain and are suffering, as this is not a decision taken lightly. In cases where the person has given their consent they should be allowed to die as they are in pain, whether this be physical or mental. If consent has not been given I believe this is wrong as you may be going against a person's wishes, as they can not express their view. Euthanasia can be justified but I believe it is not black and white, there are the shaded areas in between and this may be why people are reluctant to allow it. Louise Blacklock Centre No. 17637 ...read more.

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