Religion and Animal Rights

Relgion and Animals Rights Revision Cards
AQA Topic

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  • Created by: Katie
  • Created on: 25-04-11 15:24

Key Words 1

Ahimsa: Gandhi teaching of non-violence towards all living things

Animal Cloning: the scientific method by which animals can be created with exactly the same genetic make-up because the origin of the DNA is the same

Animal Experiments: testing on animals either fro medicine or cosmetics to ensure it is safe for humans to use

Animal Rights: the belief that animals have dignity and should be given care and protection

Atman: soul that is part of Brahmen

Bull Fighting: (Spain/Mexico) matadors fight and eventually kill the bull

Extinction: when all members of the particular species have died out and that speices will never exist on earth again

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Key Words 2

Factory Farming: animals used for meat and dairy products are kept indoors and in cramped conditions

Genetic Modification: when an animals natural make-up has been altered

Hunting: the chasing of animals for food, protection or sport

Ivory Trade: the sale of ivory from elephant tusks, today an illegal trade

Khalifah: Stewardship

Reincarnation: a belief that all living creatures possess a soul that moves from body to another at the point of death (human to animal, animal to human)

Sentient Being: a create who has sense and can feel pain

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Key Words 3

Stewardship: a duty of care towards the planet and its animals. Many religious belief that this duty comes from God. (Khalifah)

Vegan: A person who does not use any animal products

Pet: A domesticated animal kept for companionship and cared for

Fur Trade: The worldwide trade of animal fur (legal)

Halal: (Islam) the humane slaughter of animals for meat, it aims to kill the animal as quickly and humanely as possible

Vegetarianism: the belief it is wrong to eat meat

Zoos: places where wild animals are kept on public display, increasingly many do conservation work

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Uses of Animals

  • Food
  • Leisure (Zoos/Circus'/Show)
  • Transport
  • Clothing (coats and shoes)
  • Leather
  • Hunting for Leisure
  • Testing (Cosmetics and Medicines)
  • Pets
  • Sports

Acceptable: I think it is acceptable to use animals for food: as long as the animals are kept in good conditions. leisure: as long as they are treated well. leather: it will mean less of the animal is wasted (not being killed just for leather though) testing for medicines: saves lives, however not for cosmetics as we don't need them and have enough information to make without testing. pets: as long as the owner treats the pet well.Transport: as long as they are treated well. Sports: as long as they are treated well.

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Humans and Animals


  • We are all animals
  • We all eat, breath, reproduce, die, sleep
  • All sentient beings


  • Animals have no religious beliefs/ no beliefs
  • Animals live to survive
  • Animals have no morals/ conscience
  • Intelligence levels: understanding consequence

In religions like Christianity and Islam humans seem to be more important and this is linked to the belief only humans have souls. However, all religions believe animals have value and should be looked after.

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Teachings: Christianity

T: "Let us make man in our image...and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth"

M: We reflect God in that we love, animals can't and we rule over them

T: "A righteous man cares for the needs of his animal"

M: We can use animals for jobs and food  but we must care for them and cater to their needs while they are being worked. (against factory farming, for free range)

T: "Everything that moves shall be food for you"

M: animals were put on earth to provide for us and give us food

Jesus spoke of value of all creatures even the sparrow.

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Teachings: Islam

T: "There is not a that isn't living in communities like you"

M: Animals live in communities like humans

T: "It is he who has made you his agents... So He may test you in the way you use the gifts he has given you"

M: "God will test you on how you use animals, so treat them well"

T: "If someone kills a sparrow for sport, the sparrow will cry out on the day of judgement, "O, Lord! That person killed me for nothing! He did not kill me for any useful purpose"

M: Don't kill animals for no use as god judges you on the gifts he has provided for you.

Animals must be killed in the halal way, cannot eat pork, animals only allowed to be used for medical research (not cosmetics)

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Teachings/Views: Hinduism

All creatures should be respected because they are all part of Brahman. Hindus believe in reincarnation, within this belief, humans can be reincarnated into animals, therefore they should not be killed.

It is a Hindis duty to protect animals. The cow is a scared animal

  • All animals are sacred
  • Humans and animals are equal
  • All animals have an Atman and are part of the reincarnation cycle
  • animal expeimentation and cruel sports are wrong
  • disagree with factory farming
  • there are Hindi retirement homes for cows
  • Nearly all Hindus are vegetarian
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Using Animals for Experiments: Advantages

Animals can be tested to test medicines as well as cosmetics. Testing for medicine can develop cures for both animals and humans. However it is sometimes viewed as animal abuse.


  •  Diabetics benefited after insulin was isolated after experiments on dogs 1922
  •  In the 1970s, leprosy multi-drug antibiotic treatments were developed in armadillos
  •  In 1996 the anti-viral AIDS drug, Tenofovir, had its anti-retro viral efficiancy   tested in Rhesus monkeys in the USA
  •  In 1960, Albert Starr pioneered heart valve replacement surgery in humans after  a series of surgical advances using testing on dogs. In 1968 Carpentier made heart valve replacements from the heart valves of pigs
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Using Animals for Experiments: Disadvantages

However there have been many issues with using animals for human medicine as the drugs can have different effects on animals.


  • The antibiotic penicillin is deadly to guinea pigs and hamsters
  • Aspirin causes birth defects in a range of animals (rats, mice, monkeys, dogs, cat and guinea pigs) but is fine for humans
  • Opren was promoted a "wonder drug" with a unique potential to treat arthritis. It worked on lab rats but was withdrawn in 1982 after 3500 cases of side effects and 61 deaths
  • The heart drug Eraldin caused patients to suffer serious side effects; some went blind and 23 died. Yet these affects were not seen in any animal experiments
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Animal Testing (continued)

The Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986

  • A project license for the scientist in charge if the project, which details the number and types of animal to be used, the experiments to be preformed, and the purpose of them. In granting the license they consider "the likely adverse effects on the animals concerned against the benefit likely to accrue as a result of the programme to be specified in the license"
  • A certificate for the institution to ensure it has adequate facilities and staff
  • A personal license for each scientist or technician who carries out any procedure

What Relgions say about Animal Experiments

BUDDISM: Buddhists oppose animal experiments. They believe that life is as precious to animals as it is to humans. Since all life is dependent others they think caring for other creatures will improve human life.

ISLAM: Animals being caged is forbidden, but animals can be used to find cures for diseases. Allah has entrusted humans with maintaining the unity of his creations.

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Animal Charities: RSPCA

"The RSPCA as a charity will, by all lawful means, prevent cruelty, promote kindness to and alleviate suffering of all animals"


  • Work to rescue domestic and wild animals
  • Rehabilitate animals that can be returned to the wild
  • Work with the government and public to prevent cruelty
  • Prosecute those who neglect the law on behalf of defenceless animals
  • Have vets and mobile clinics to reach animals who would otherwise not get treatment

Current Campaigns

  • Working with animals used in research, improving the welfare of wild animals, improve lives and reduce suffering of farm animals, working with the welfare of pets
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Animal Charities: Animal Aid


  • Increase public awareness of abuse of animals in society
  • To examine existing legislation on animal rights and matters
  • To prevent the exploitation of animals
  • To educate the public with a sense of moral responsibility towards animals
  • To promote a lifestyle which does not involve the abuse of animals
  • To correct and diffuse among members of the public information on all matters of animal rights and abuse

Current Campaigns

  • Horse Racing whipping rules
  • Morals of eating animals in different cultures- Should we be eating dogs?
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Animal Issues: Vegetarianism


  • Eating meat is killing animals/ in the end you are killing
  • An abuse of power
  • Land is wasted due to the meat industry
  • Unfair on animals/ destroying a creatures community
  • BUDDHISM: Animals are just as worthy to live their lives as humans
  • HINDUISM: Avoid meat as it cannot be obtained without harming creatures


  • Unhealthy/ difficult to live without meat (can get deficiencies without meat)
  • There is a food chain and humans happen to be on top
  • There is free range available which means the animals have good lives
  • ISLAM: Humans are superior to animals and have been ordered to take over,but still care for animals
  • CHRISTIANITY: Animals were created by god to provide humans with food
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Animal Issues: Zoos


  • They educate the public about different animals
  • Provide the animal with a safe environment in which it is cared for
  • Allow the public to see animals which they may never see in the wild
  • Can start breeding projects and help animals who are close to extinction
  • CHRISTIANITY: "A righteous man cares for the needs of his animals"
  • HINDUISM: "It is a Hindus duty to feed animals"
  • ISLAM: "Humans are trustees all over the world"


  • Animals aren't in their natural habitat
  • Can be in caged in small spaces
  • ISLAM: Animals should not be kept in small spaces#
  • Animals could be put in Wildlife reserves instead of zoos
  • ISLAM: "There is not animal living on earth that does not live in communities like you
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Animal Issues: Pets


  • Humans have kept pets for thousands of years
  • Humans and animals can benefit each other (exercise, health, help for disabled, loneliness)
  • Some animals want to be pets (Like human company)
  • Unlike in zoos, animals can be given love and emotional support
  • They have a better chance at life if they are domesticated
  • CHRISTIANITY: "A righteous man cares for the needs of his animal"
  • HINDUISM: It is a Hindus duty to feed and protect animals
  • ISLAM: Whoever is kind to the creatures of god is kind to himself
  • ISLAM: Muhammed and the Cat
  • Most religions don't teach against pets


  • Some owners abuse their pets/ pets can harm their owners
  • An animals natural home is the wild and that's where it should be left
  • Breeding farms for pets can abuse animals
  • ISLAM: "There is not an animal that does not live in communities like you"
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Animal Issues: Battery Farming

When animals are kept in small cages to mass produce that food product.


  • Cheap, makes food more affordable
  • The animals are going to die anyway
  • Makes products more available


  • Animals kept in small spaces and horrible conditions/ poor QOL
  • Feel pain
  • CHRISTIANITY: animals can feel pain, humans should not treat animals purely as a source of food
  • ISLAM: animals are to be respected, should lead a good life before being killed, animals should not be caged
  • HIMDUISM: cows should not be eaten/hurt, should be treated with respect (animals have souls and are part of reincarnation)
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Animal Issues: Sport

Animals used in sport are working animals. They can be highly trained and specifically bred. There is a lot of controversy on weather animals should be used or not.


  • Commercial (can help with economy)
  • Entertaining for some people
  • Good Life for animals (in some cases)
  • HINDUISM: animals can be used in sport as long as they are treated with respect and dignity
  • CHRISTIANITY:can be used for sport but must be looked after/treated well


  • not their natural habitat
  • It is degrading to use animals in sport/ does the animal want it?
  • ISLAM: animals have certain uses but sport is not one of them
  • ISLAM: against killing animals for/in sport (sparrow quote)
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Animal Issues: The Fur and Ivory Trade


  • Fur is one of the best ways of keeping warm
  • In some Cultures/traditions (traditional way of keeping warm)
  • For money/Looks Nice
  • Can use it when the animal is dead (not wasting parts of the animal)


  • Elephants just killed for their tusks (like a sport and tusks are trophies)
  • Older elephants are killed which leaves younger ones orphaned
  • Kills males meaning females can't breed
  • There are alternatives like faux fur
  • Fur farms treat animals terribly
  • CHRISTIANITY: "A righteous man cares for the needs of his animals"
  • ISLAM: "There is not an animal that doesn't live in communities like you"
  • ISLAM: Allah provided us with the materials we needed to survive

2000: illegal to run fur farm in England, 1999: ivory trade banned

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Animal Rights and The Future: Cloning

As technology advances, so does or use of animals. We are now able to clone animals and modify them genetically. This can increase food production or develop cures for human disease. Cloning is a controversial issue.

Cloning: A clone is an identical copy of another animal. In 1997, Dolly the sheep was the first animal to be cloned successfully, after 223 failed attempts. Since then, cats, dogs and rats have been successfully cloned.


  • Can lead to advances in medical research which can save lives and eliminate disease


  • Leads to mass disposal of animal embryos
  • Everything is unique, there can't be another you
  • Where will these advances lead to?
  • Is playing God: only he can create/destroy life
  • Very expensive, wastes money
  • Although it's a genetic match, the personality of the animal can change
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Pet Cloning

For (animal lovers):

  • For pet owners who can afford it, cloning pets is an opportunity to be reunited with their animals, and the cloned pet has a chance at a happy life. However, the procedure is very expensive and the pet may have changed behaviour, meaning there wont be the same relationship with their pet


  • Cloning animals may lead to the discovery of cures for many diseases that effect animals and humans
  • High risk of miscarriage and unknown side effects (Dolly the cloned sheep suffered from medical complications,although there is no direct link to this and her being a clone)
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Animal Rights

  • "The belief that animals have dignity and should be given care and protections"
  • Religious believers think they should be respected and animals are precious and good but they should not have rights
  • Most religions believe humans are more important than animals, and giving them rights will make them more important than they are

Animal Welfare Charities:RGT, CIWF, The Blue Cross, RSPCA, Animal Aid, Dogs Trust, PDSA, WWF

What can they do?

  • Peaceful Protests or Demonstrations
  • Petitions
  • Releasing provocative images and videos
  • Boycott (e.g. shops that use animal fur)
  • Attack places (e.g. fur farms, battery farms...)
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Alan Russel

The arguments that you made would fail in an RS test because they are not backed up by lots of teachings. But generally its quite good


what does the




etc stand for???

Black Wolf

T = Teaching

M= Meaning

And the cow is a SACRED animal, not a SCARED animal ;P


Wowww...these are amazing..have you done any more for other topics?

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