Saturday, March 27, 2010
When does life really begin ?
The recent issues involved with passage of the Obama health care bill in the US have raised important issues involving the use of federal money from the bill to fund abortion procedures. This was highlighted by the last minute deal Obama cut with Congressman Stupak and his companions (the so-called 'pro-life' Democrats) where Obama signed an executive order that no money from this bill would be used to fund abortions. Abortion rights activists or the 'pro-choice' group were incensed with this deal and the abortion opponents or the 'pro-life' folks termed this bill as a baby-killer bill. Their main concern was that any law implemented through an executive order can also be UNIMPLEMENTED by a subsequent executive order. This is a debate that seems very inflamatory with apparently no middle ground. At the heart of the debate lies the question "When does life begin" ? Or rather what is life itself ? Is life constituted by the biological soup that exists immediately post-conception in an embryo or does it refer to a consciousness that is associated at an advanced stage of embryonic development (after cell differentiation to organs)? This is a question which science has not been able to concretely answer and thus one can look into the spiritual realm for guidance (given the moral quandries involved). In Islam, it is said that Allah breathes the soul or "ruh" into the unborn child at 120 days after conception. I am not sure what Christianity, Judaism or Hinduism say on the topic. But I thought it would be a good topic to discuss. All comments are most welcome. In this blog, we have no boundries and have equal respect for the sacred and the profane....