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Theravada's teaching on Bioethics - Dhamma Wheel

Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

A forum for beginners and members of other Buddhist traditions to ask questions about Theravāda (The Way of the Elders). Responses require moderator approval before they are visible.
grace_xx
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Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby grace_xx » Wed May 13, 2009 11:17 am

Im very interested in the teaching of theravada on bioethics (ie: abortion, cloning, stem cell research). I know that most schools condemn these actions but for abortion there is two sides to it depending on the situation. Is there any quotes or specific teachings, scared texts that particulary targets on this issue? Thankss, Buddha Bless you! :smile:
Last edited by grace_xx on Thu May 14, 2009 9:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Cittasanto » Wed May 13, 2009 11:48 am

Some of these issues have been raised in another thread I will have a look for it, but it was about the 9year old who was raped and excomunicated along with her doctor from the church in south America, if I can't find it you may come across it.


He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Cittasanto » Wed May 13, 2009 11:51 am



He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

grace_xx
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Joined: Wed May 13, 2009 11:10 am

Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby grace_xx » Wed May 13, 2009 12:03 pm

Thank you for replying! I was wondering, how the buddhist teaching applied to these issues? I was thinking vegetarism is one teaching, that can be applied through the 5 precepts the "Do not kill" i guess becoming vegetarism is strongly supported. Through mediation maybe?

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Cittasanto
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Cittasanto » Wed May 13, 2009 12:29 pm



He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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zavk
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby zavk » Thu May 14, 2009 12:24 am

Hello Grace,

Damien Keown has a book entitled, Buddhism and Bioethics, that is written from a Theravadin perspective:

http://www.amazon.com/Buddhism-Bioethic ... 0333912802

There's a review of the book here:

http://ccbs.ntu.edu.tw/FULLTEXT/JR-PHIL/barnhart.htm
With metta,
zavk

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kc2dpt
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby kc2dpt » Thu May 14, 2009 3:57 am

- Peter


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Cittasanto
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Cittasanto » Thu May 14, 2009 8:29 am



He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.

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Dhammanando
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Dhammanando » Thu May 14, 2009 11:39 am


grace_xx
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby grace_xx » Thu May 14, 2009 1:12 pm

May I ask, the skandhas (the five aggregates of human life/being) would it be considered as the teaching of the Dhamma, hence could it be effectively meditated upon? This is a bit off topic, but I think the Mayahana School of Buddhism offers two sides to abortion as quoted by the Dalai Lama

"Of course, abortion, from a Buddhist viewpoint, is an act of killing and is negative, generally speaking. But it depends on the circumstances.
If the unborn child will be retarded or if the birth will create serious problems for the parent, these are cases where there can be an exception. I think abortion should be approved or disapproved according to each circumstance."
Dalai Lama, New York Times, 28/11/1993

Is the teaching of Theravada refect upon something similar?

Thank you for the responses. I'm sorry for my ignorance on Buddhism! Its very interesting, but at the same time very confusing! Thank for the links I'll check them out right now. Thank you =)

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Dhammanando
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Dhammanando » Thu May 14, 2009 1:23 pm


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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Dhammanando » Thu May 14, 2009 1:41 pm

A good overview of the subject from Peter Harvey's Introduction to Buddhist Ethics.

Harvey, Abortion.pdf
(574.68 KiB) Downloaded 150 times

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Fede
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Fede » Thu May 14, 2009 3:17 pm

"Samsara: The human condition's heartbreaking inability to sustain contentment." Elizabeth Gilbert, 'Eat, Pray, Love'.

Simplify: 17 into 1 WILL go: Mindfulness!

Quieta movere magna merces videbatur. (Sallust, c.86-c.35 BC)
Translation: Just to stir things up seemed a good reward in itself. ;)

I am sooooo happy - How on earth could I be otherwise?! :D


http://www.armchairadvice.co.uk/relationships/forum/

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kc2dpt
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby kc2dpt » Thu May 14, 2009 3:48 pm

- Peter


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Cittasanto
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Re: Theravada's teaching on Bioethics

Postby Cittasanto » Thu May 14, 2009 11:25 pm

Thanks Dhammanando,
I thought peter was on about a sutta reference there?

on a side note to the abortion string happening.
I have never actually heard of any reason which would persuade me that Abortion is always a bad thing (not including abortion for the sake of abortion)


He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.


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