Alternatives in Jewish Bioethics by Noam J. Zohar

By Noam J. Zohar

This discussion among the Jewish normative culture and Western ethical philosophy addresses crucial modern matters in scientific ethics.

Alternatives in Jewish Bioethics involves a discussion among modern, Western ethical philosophy and the Jewish culture of legal/moral discourse (Halakha). spotting that no unmarried culture has a monopoly on legitimate ethical teachings, it seeks to counterpoint our moral views via mutual trade.

This is facilitated through a non-authoritarian method of Judaism--a transparent replacement to the implicitly insular, "take-it-or-leave-it" strategy usually encountered during this box. Following within the footsteps of classical rabbinic discussions, normative pronouncements are grounded in purposes, open to severe exam. The "alternatives" are in the publication as well--the presentation all through avoids one-sided conclusions, bringing up and interpreting or extra positions to make feel of the talk. those specific arguments also are associated with a bigger photo, contrasting easy topics: spiritual naturalism as opposed to non secular humanism.

Concretely, the publication addresses a number of the imperative modern concerns within the ethics of medication. those comprise assisted suicide and euthanasia, donor insemination and "surrogate" motherhood, using human cadavers for studying and examine, and allocation of scarce assets at either the person and social degrees.

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Extra resources for Alternatives in Jewish Bioethics

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Said [R. Yose]: "I speak to you words of reason, and you reply, 'From Heaven they will have mercy'! " ... Soon afterward, R. Yose ben Kisma passed away. All the Roman notables came to his funeral, and made a great eulogy. On their way back, they saw R. Hanina ben Teradion sitting engaged in Torah [study], [having] called a public assembly with a Torah scroll held in his bosom. They brought him in and wrapped him in the Torah scroll, surrounded him with bundles of vine shoots, and set them on fire.

Here it becomes necessary to move beyond the conceptual problem of defining what is "natural"; we must delve more deeply into the question of the plausibility of naturalism, that is, of referring to "the natural" as a normative gUide. Hence our analysis proceeds to step two: why should the natural process be respected? Recalling the Maimonidean approach to medicine and nature as described in the previous chapter, all the above distinctions seem hardly comprehensible. Suppose we accept Maimonides's assertion that there is no substantial difference between the naturalness of food and that of medications.

Rather, when we learn of any 26 Alternatives in Jewish Bioethics [such] prediction, we should say "All is in God's hands," for He is the God of Gods, exalted above all and completely omnipotent, who can alter at will the formations of the stars and constellations, who "frustrates the tokens of the impostors, and makes diviners mad. "14 We should believe that all coming events will be determined in accord with each person's [degree of] entering into God's service. (commentary to 18: 13) The issue is, then, one of reliance.

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