Medical ethics: abortion essay

“With reference to the topic you have investigated, examine and comment on the issues that emerge from keeping up with developments in medical ethics whilst maintaining religious principles and/or ethical values.”

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Philosophy and Religion Unit 2Ruby Farrelly
"With reference to the topic you have investigated, examine and comment on the issues that
emerge from keeping up with developments in medical ethics whilst maintaining religious
principles and/or ethical values."
I have chosen the topic abortion for my investigation within medical ethics. Abortion is changing because
more people are deciding to use it, or are making a decision of not choosing to abort because of the issues
that emerge from keeping up with developments whilst maintaining religious principles and ethical values.
These changes are happening due to peoples changing perceptions, and this will continue to happen in the
future; not only because of changing perceptions by people but because of scholars and ethical theories
which could affect people's beliefs. Other factors that create issues for people when keeping up with
developments in medical ethics include and religious and ethical values, situation ethics, antinomian ethics,
legalistic ethics, foetus' right vs. woman's right, the law, utilitarianism, the decline in stigma attached to
abortion, secularisation and religious concepts and principles. These are the factors that I will examine and
comment on, highlighting how these factors create issues that emerge from keeping up with developments
in medical ethics whilst maintaining religious principles and/or ethical values.
Religious principles are a very important factor because it is one of the main factors that create issues for
women when considering abortion. Some religions completely oppose abortion so the woman wouldn't
even have a choice because she could feel the need to comply. However, some religions can be more
relaxed or have rules that a woman can abort in certain situations, for example; it is okay for a woman to
have an abortion is there are health risks is she has birth to a child.
The Church of England shares the Roman Catholic view that abortion is completely wrong, and are opposed
to it. The Church says that human life begins when the woman's egg is fertilised by a male sperm, therefore it
is wrong to abort because that means that someone is murdering. The bible states "Thou shalt not kill' and
as this is murdering in Christian terms, abortion is completely wrong. However, there are strictly limited
conditions that a woman can abort if there was a chance of greater harm to the mother, for example; having
the baby could kill her, or if she had been raped.
Islam believes that life is created at conception and is created by god and that the foetus has a right to life.
Abortion is forbidden in the Quran, as it states: "Do not kill or take a human life which God has declared to
be sacred." (Chapter 6, verse 151) This creates serious issues for a muslim because they could feel that they
really need an abortion because they could have been raped or could risk serious health implications from
giving birth to the baby, but they could feel that they need to stay loyal to their religion and these islamic
rules could cause them to go against the religion because they feel that an abortion is something they really
need.
Sikhs believe that god is present in every living being, so abortion is morally wrong because your taking away
God. Sikhism teaches that abortion is accepted only in extreme circumstances such as rape or to save the
mother's life. This means that in most cases, if the woman wants to oblige to her religious principles then
she would have to have birth to the baby.
Hinduism is generally opposed to abortion because Hindus choose the action that will do least harm to
everyone, in abortion this includes the mother, father, the foetus and society. However, it is allowed when it
is used to save the mother's life. This could cause issues because they could feel that abortion will do the
least harm to everyone because the baby could be born severely handicapped and the mother and father
couldn't look after it, so may feel that an abortion is necessary.
Judaism does not forbid abortion but will only allow it for serious reasons. When a woman feels that she
needs an abortion she has to have a consultation with the Rabbi for advice to what she should do, however,
Strict Judaism permits abortion only in cases where continuing the pregnancy would put the mother's life in
serious danger.
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Philosophy and Religion Unit 2Ruby Farrelly
Buddhists believe that they are in charge for their own destiny. If they do something wrong, they will receive
they're bad karma in another life, so they try to stop bad things from happening. Abortion is generally seen
as morally wrong, so it is a Buddhists choice to undertaken abortion.…read more

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Philosophy and Religion Unit 2Ruby Farrelly
unwanted pregnancy puts an huge amount of strain on a woman's body. She says that the foetus's rights are
not equal to the mother's rights, even though the foetus is innocent. She also states that there is no law or
duty that compels the woman to be a good Samaritan.…read more

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Philosophy and Religion Unit 2Ruby Farrelly
cause severe psychological problems, but some people can be allowed to abort because they would prefer
a boy to a girl. These are serious issues which exist in the world today.
References:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/
http://www.spuc.org.uk/youth/student_info_on_abortion/religion
http://www.bbc.co.uk/ethics/introduction/situation_1.…read more

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