Abortion and morality

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by mlw, Nov 13, 2012.

  1. mlw
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    mlw Member

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    Earlier in history the baby acquired status as a human being only at the moment of birth. As a fetus it hadn't yet taken its first breath, which was regarded as the moment when it became inspired with the life spirit. In fact, during epochs in history, the child had to undergo a ritual, similar to baptism, before it acquired full status as a human being. Before this, the parents could get rid of the child. This was, of course, due to factors of poverty. Historically, people had recourse to a symbolic and religious worldview. The "rule" was that human life begins when the child is born. This is the moment when it takes its first breath and starts life as a separate organism. We still celebrate this as our birthday, when our life began. We don't view it as beginning a few months before. Astrologers have always regarded this as the moment when life begins. Although we have lost this "naive" worldview, I don't think it's possible to live without a symbolic outlook. We must still have recourse to symbolic rules to live by. The moral burden gets too big, otherwise. We cannot expect scientific definitions to resolve all moral problems.

    I think we should be less sentimental about abortion. Up to a few months, abortion should be legal. It is true that it is cruel, but we cannot expect to remove all the dark aspects from life. Most importantly, human life isn't holy. There is a tendency of putting the human being on a pedestal, as if he were a divine being. But homo sapiens is the most destructive and evil creature that has ever existed on this earth. There is no grounds for worshipping human life. There is a conflict between qualitatively valuable life (intellectual life, spiritual life, artistic life) versus vegetative life, i.e., the life of the child; motherhood and the rearing of children, etc. Among simple people in the Third World there is really no alternative to a vegetative life, so they tend to give birth to many children. But in the Western population there are people who have greater horizons than a mere instinctual and unconscious life, which implies a qualitatively valuable life, capable of enhancing the conscious dimensions. The meaning of human life isn't simply to propagate the species. For instance, if a woman wants to pursue a career as a musician, it might be necessary to do an abortion. Thus, something spiritually valuable can take root. Life isn't only about quantity. Quality is equally important. So this is a conflict which we have to live with. We have to put up with the painful and conflicting sides of life, and not simply remove that which is morally difficult, as in the Islamic countries. Arguably, a single meaningful human life is worth hundreds of unconscious and mechanical lives (in a metaphorical sense).

    A meaningful human life is a life that can reach its potential. Think of the many women in history who had to sacrifice their individual talent for the sake of motherhood and kitchen duties. An immense number of philosophers, musicians, artists, poets, scientists, and spiritual personalities, were never given a chance. It is very painful not to be able to develop one's personality, and instead be confined within a suffocating space. Many people, not only women, have been driven insane by the stifling morality of society. It has created immense suffering in human history. When I speak of "meaningful life" I don't mean to say that all other human life is worthless. I mean that people who have an impetus in themselves, to manifest their inner nature, will experience life as meaningless if they are confined within too narrow constraints. Such people have an urge to live a meaningful life, whereas the majority just take a seat on the train, visit all the stations in life, and then die. Of course, their lives are probably meaningful in some religious sense, but their lives aren't meaningful in the personal sense of the creative individual. There are different variants of meaning.

    It is not an easy decission to terminate the life of fetuses, but nor is it self-evident to always let them live. We must accept that life is wrought with difficult moral problems. Don't swallow the fundamentalist argument, that abortion is always wrong. We are unceasingly taking the lives of living beings. A pig, for instance, is a vastly more intelligent creature than a fetus, and it has a full spectrum of feelings. We mustn't elevate human beings to divine creatures that under all circumstances must be kept alive, whereas other living creatures can be killed as if they had no value at all. Today, we overvalue vegetative and unconscious life and underestimate spiritual and individual life. We ought to acknowledge the moral conflict involved between these two forms of life. Sometimes one must leave room to the growth of the individual at the price of vegetative and unconscious life. The notion that all human life is always divine and must be protected at all costs is what underlies the expansive population of the Third World and their immigration to the Western world. In Sweden, the majority of them lead passive lives. Most Western people seem to think this is ideal. The more humans there exist on earth the better it is, whether or not they are merely vegetating. But this policy is catastrophic. Population growth devastates the earth.

    The lack of appraisal of the principle of individuation is dismaying. The advanced conscious life of the individual is truly valuable life. It is the only thing which is divine, whereas unconscious and mechanic human life is not only meaningless, it is destructive to life on earth since it uses up so much resources and gives rise to criminality. The individual is like a tree that has a strong urge to blossom out. If this force is stymied, it generates an enormous anxiety and suffering in the individual. Life must be lived, and there are always costs involved, such as the sacrifice of a fetus, or the sacrifice of a loving relationship. Life always involves sacrifice. (That's why all higher civilizations in the Bronze Age made an abominable ritual of this truth and instituted the human sacrifice). We don't need to spare every embryo, nor do we need to keep every Third World child alive. Let's stop worshipping human life, as such. In the modern age the human being is elevated to divine proportions. This is a severe misunderstanding of the Christian message. To follow the path of Christ means to achieve emancipation from unconscious and vegetative life and to realize one's inner potential.

    Lao-tzu says: "Life is spirit" (Tao Te Ching, 6). The life of the spirit mustn't be confined within a box where it is suffocating. This is what happens when the vulgar notion of life in the flesh is elevated as the highest principle. Let's cease the materialistic worship of human proliferation. It is time to understand that life is spirit. The maximization of human lives on this planet has no value at all, it only destroys the planet. It asphyxiates the life in the spirit, which is the only real life.

    Mats Winther
     
  2. The Irish Ram
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    The Irish Ram LITTLE GIRL / Ram Tough

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    is an oxymoron.

    If God took the time to place the individual hairs on the heads of those aborted children, I'll bet He meant for them to have a life. When He judges the Nations, we'll be paying for this mistake.
    Possibly, the number of Americans killed during the tribulation period may equal the number of His children we have killed, I don't know, but I doubt he overlooks it.
     
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  3. there4eyeM
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    there4eyeM unlicensed metaphysician

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    "...homo sapiens is the most destructive and evil creature that has ever existed on this earth..."

    Not the most, the ONLY.

    'Destructive' and 'evil' are totally human concepts and creations. They do not exist 'out there' but only in the human mind. So, no other creature can be other than it naturally is, which is simply natural. Humans are capable of everything humans can imagine, from devil to angel.

    We can be one with the universe or at war with it, but it is never at war with us.
     
  4. mlw
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    Those who view abortion as an inhumane act of cruelty must bear in mind that we cannot expect to remove all the dark aspects from life. We must stop pretending that life could be perfect, and void of moral difficulties. The conclusion is that we cannot avoid dirtying ourselves. We must try to remain as morally untarnished as possible, but we mustn't believe that it is possible, except for Jesus. If we think that we are perfectly good, we are also very prone to castigate others as deviants, just as religious zealots do. It is nothing but zealotry to believe that there are ways of remaining a perfectly clean and moral upstanding citizen. It makes people very judgmental towards others. I discuss the acceptance of dark nature in my article Symbolic Poverty, here.

    Mats Winther
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2012
  5. ABikerSailor
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    ABikerSailor Platinum Member

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    Are you going to tell me that a zygote has hairs on their head? Really? There's not even a nervous system, a brain (which most say is what separates us from the animals), nor a heart.

    Sorry.......................but until that fetus has drawn the breath of Life (as it was said in Genesis, where God breathed the breath of life into Adam), it's not really human.

    A zygote is a blueprint for a human, but it's not a human.

    Blueprints for a house will make a house, but the blueprints are not a house.
     
  6. there4eyeM
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    there4eyeM unlicensed metaphysician

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    'Earth' cannot be devastated, because devastation is merely a human illusion. The planet has been transformed countless times by huge occurrences. We would call it devastated. The earth calls it nothing as the earth is not something that uses thought, words or concepts.

    Over population is only bad because it is undesirable to humans, unless it isn't. I don't want it and don't think it expresses the highest and best attributes of 'humaness', but that is my view. Humans determine what has value, what is precious, what has rights, etc. Reality is what we choose to acknowledge.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2012
  7. there4eyeM
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    there4eyeM unlicensed metaphysician

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    Is it not evident if God is all knowing that God knew humans would make decisions about birth? So, that capacity and potential also issues from God.
     
  8. ABikerSailor
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    ABikerSailor Platinum Member

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    Spineless idiot spiritualist with no idea of the topic says what?
     
  9. there4eyeM
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    there4eyeM unlicensed metaphysician

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    Say 'what' again!
     
  10. ABikerSailor
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    Ya gonna eat the Hawaiian burger and drink my coke?

    WHAT Motherfucker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     

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