Matters of life and death unit overview

I have summarised my notes and textbook points on the Matters of Life and Death unit for Religion and Life. We are studying Christianity and Islam as our other religion. 

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  • Created on: 13-04-13 00:02
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Matters of Life and Death
Why Christians believe in Life after Death and how beliefs about life after death affect their lives.
-All Christians believe that there is a life after death. The resurrection of Jesus proves that there is
life after death.
-Some Christians believe that when you die you will stay in the grave until the end of the world when
god will raise everyone and judge everyone. All good Christians will go to heaven and everyone else
will go to hell.
-Catholic Christians say that when you die, the souls of very good Christians will go to heaven and
bad Christians will go to purgatory to pay off their sins. Then at the end of the world everyone will be
raised and good Christians will go to heaven and most other people will go to hell.
-Many Christians do not believe in resurrection and they believe that the soul is immortal and will live
on after death. They believe this because of things such as near death experiences. These Christians
don't believe in hell.
-The life of Jesus proves it. Immortality of the soul; Jesus' resurrection showed afterlife exists.
-Jesus taught it: several times throughout his life, Jesus told followers if they believe in him, they will
be granted eternal life in heaven.
-the Bible teaches Christians to trust Jesus to attain "eternal life"
-The Church teaches the immortality of the soul. In the Creed, Christians recite: i believe in the
resurrection on the body and the life everlasting.
These beliefs reassure Christians that Jesus will look after them and it gives them a purpose to life,
and to death as they know it is worthwhile to lead a good life because they will be judged, and that
death is not the end.
Why do Muslims believe in life after death?
-Qur'an has the highest authority. It teaches people "shall be raised to life" and will "in the end
return to your Lord".
-Messengers or Allah sent over time all taught life after death
Burial body remains in grave until Last Day, soul taken by angel of death to Barzakh. Every
body+soul reunited to face judgement. If good deeds outweigh bad deeds, person goes to heaven,
otherwise to hellfire to be purified.
Non-religious reasons for believing in life after death
Paranormal: Lots of people claim to see ghosts, spirits of dead people. Shows death is not the end.
Existence of ghosts cannot be disproven, we cannot see electricity and yet we know it exists.
Near death experiences: Accurate accounts from patients of what happened while they were under
anaesthetic on an operating table. Claim they say a bright light and experienced floating.
Re-incarnation: Sikhs and Hindus believe in this. There are accounts of people recounting past lives
through hypnosis. Some say déjà vu is a glimpse into ones past life.

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Mediums: they contact the dead, to pass messages onto loved ones so there must be a life after
Why some people do not believe in life after death
-Near death experiences can be analysed to be hallucinations, and accounts of bright lights/tunnels =
body closing down or effect of drugs.
-Idea goes against common sense, would be made clearer if true.
-Many cannot face death and so take comfort in an afterlife.…read more

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Passive E: decision made to stop treatment, knowing this will result in death e.g. turning off a life
For Euthanasia Against Euthanasia
-no quality of life when in great pain, so should -God gives life, therefore only he should take it
have the choice of ending it in a dignified away.
-Rejects the importance and value of human life
-Loved ones should not have to watch them die
-not everyone is in the right state of mind when
in pain.…read more

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E.G. girl had permanent brain damage after heart attack ­ legal battle between husband (wanted to
disconnect feeding tube) and parents (believed in sanctity of life). CNN favoured the family and
portrayed husband negatively. The Catholic view was unexplained.…read more


Miss KHP

Nice and simple notes on matters of life and death for the Edexcel exam board.

Covers abortion and euthanasia issues from a Islamic and Chrstian perspective.

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