Buddhanet - Buddhist attitude to abortion. Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. 40, 1990. It's a crime. - Pope Francis ... Buddha. Hinduism-AtoZ. In such cases the moral status of an abortion will depend on the intentions of those carrying it out. An ordained monk should not deliberately deprive a living thing of life, even if it is only an ant. So the intent is less of restricting a woman’s choices but more so, rather to prevent harm to a developing human life – to prevent the taking of a new life – that is the primary intent. When the sperm fuses with the ovum => that’s when a human being gets their 46 chromosomes from. Buddhists face a difficulty where an abortion is medically necessary to save the life of the mother and so a life will be lost whether there is or isn't an abortion. The Buddha was that serious about not engaging in nor encouraging abortion. Is an obstetrician/gynaecologist and FORMER abortionist, who had previously performed 1200 abortions until one day – he just looked at the baby’s face and remains that he had just pulled out and realized – this is someone’s son or daughter. You can work on laws where  you can easily prosecute the rapist, so that he goes to jail for a long, long time as deterrents. Here’s the full interview with him: Disclaimer:  This post is for educational purposes only. Abortion and Buddhism. If you’re not prepared to live the rest of your life with someone – don’t do it with them. ( Log Out /  Islamic law is often used in the court system of many Islamic countries where there is no separation of church and state. Combined together, the genetic makeup form the body of a new human being – so once again, it’s not the woman’s body – it’s the baby’s body. Whatever monk intentionally deprives a human being of life – even to the extent of causing an abortion – he becomes no longer a (true) recluse (samana), not a son of the Sakyans [i.e., no longer a follower of the Buddha]. Quotes. Focus on prevention, not on cure. This is an important topic because a lot of people are confused and don’t know what to do and can even be enticed by wrong arguments. You can’t blame women who do this – because they are suffering enough already. Upanishads. The new being, bearing the karmic identity of a recently deceased individual, is therefore as entitled to the same moral respect as an adult human being. Bioethics Abortion (Mahayana Brahajala Sutra; Lotus of the Good Law). It’s not like say adult skin cells which just slough off the body when they die – these are embryonic stem cells – which will form the basis for the entire body of the baby! Well, to answer that question, we must look at the stance that Buddhism has regarding abortion. Essays. Then the victory is yours. An ordained monk should not deliberately deprive a living thing of life, even if it is only an ant. Although Buddhists believe that beings live in a cycle of birth death and rebirth, they regard the moment of conception as the beginning of the life of an embodied individual. It’s just a human life that has not yet fully developed it’s body. 422 matching entries found. I’ve been against abortion from the time I was 16 (when I understood what it was) until now. Here's an example of how an abortion might constitute an act of killing: Therefore the First Precept of Buddhism - not to kill - is violated and this is tantamount to killing a human being. They would have to live with that guilt for the rest of their lives. She does include some fascinating online content by anti-abortion Buddhists, but I would have liked to have heard more if I'm to believe Chinese Buddhists are that incensed about abortion. The ethical consequences of the decision will also depend on the motive and intention behind the decision, and the level of mindfulness with which it was taken. Now you can say that the zygote draws upon the mother’s body for nutrition, but you can’t say that the zygote/cluster of cells/fetus is the mother’s body – that cluster of cells or fetus is actually the body of the new human being – it is the child’s body, not the mother’s body. The problem with this idea is that it takes 1-3 days to dilate the cervix for an abortion – the mother could’ve died by then! It’s rare for someone non-Christian in the US to take a stand against abortion. Many Buddhists find repugnant such types of manipulation of parental guilt - especially when expressed in the notion that a foetus in limbo will wreak vengeance (tatari) on parents who neglect to memorialize it. And even when it’s still a cluster of cells – it’s alive because it’s growing of it’s own accord. Ajahn Sumedho laments that these days, celibacy isn’t even talked about as a method for preventing abortions. "In the west this Buddhist principle is wielded by social justice liberals when arguing against war, capital punishment, and torture. Money alone will confer nobility. Sure she does. (The service can also be used in cases of miscarriage or stillbirth.) At conception. So what is the Buddha’s advice to lay people if they want to rise up to upholding the precepts in order to follow the Buddha’s path? ‘We have no authority to take life.’ Aren’t our adult bodies also a bunch of cells? Why Buddhism would make such an exception is unclear, especially given the case Keown builds against the practice. One way that we can make fewer abortions happen is by lobbying for laws that make adoption easier. Whatever monk intentionally deprives a human being of life – even to the extent of causing an abortion – he becomes no longer a (true) recluse (samana), not a son of the Sakyans [i.e., no longer a follower of the Buddha]. This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. Buddhism is the only widely followed religion that does not have one particular stance on abortion. Vedas. If she decides she wants an abortion that provides an intention to kill. How so? It does however play an … Of course, abortion, from a Buddhist viewpoint, is an act of killing and is negative, generally speaking. Is alive – by the fact that it’s growing (if something is dead, it won’t grow and you won’t have to kill it. Scholar Jeff Wilson discusses his research on the history of pro-life movements in North America and Japan amid a renewed push for restrictions on abortion in the US. Inspirational Quotes. Life Future Moment. My job is not to make decisions or advice for others, but to give a “pure” classical Buddhist explanation on abortion. Symbolism. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so. Abortion Faith Legislation Pro-life Murder Women Republicans Buddhism Past Philosophy Words Of Wisdom Future Pregnancy Love Funny Celebrity Dark Humor Politics. Or is it an independent human life? This is the first book to explore the abortion question from a range of Buddhist cultural and ethical perspectives. The fact that you have to kill it tells you it’s alive – it is a living human being). Buddhism believes in rebirth and teaches that individual human life begins at conception. It is the most important system of morality in Buddhism, together with the monastic rules. Further, not all cells are created equal. So here are some options: In the 1st Trimester – the baby is still alive. Show more. However, approaching abortion as merely a "rights" issue doesn't seem to be getting us anywhere. BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. "This is not mine, I am not this; this is not myself." The Buddhist vie of abortion is more liberal this is because it leaves the decision to the person who engages in the act to a large extent. But the word also refers to the virtue and morality which lies at the foundation of the spiritual path to enlightenment, which is the first of the three forms … The Training Rules of Discipline for Monks and Nuns – to encourage the abortion is a major serious offense – a parajika offense that leads to expulsion of that person from the Sangha (the Community of Monks and Nuns), makes a monk or a nun defeated and can no longer be called a son or daughter of the Buddha. Read more. ( Log Out /  1995a. Inspirational Think Become. He must NOT use any methods whatsoever, not even mantras, to kill. The Forgotten Child. She used to work for an abortion clinic and one day was asked to help with an abortion guided by ultrasound – but she could see the baby squirming, fighting for it’s life trying to get away from being sucked out. Pantheon. He also quotes from a pamphlet from the Japanese-American Buddhist Churches of America: It is the woman carrying the fetus, and no one else, who must in the … So one question you can ask yourselves before you do anything is, “Can I live with the consequences of this action for the rest of my life?”  If there’s any doubt, don’t do it – because it can eat you up inside for the rest of your life. A Rejoinder to George Tanabe," Japanese Journal of Religious Studies 22/1-2:185-196. Yes, our adult bodies too are a bunch of cells – a much greater bunch of cells which supports human life. Damien Keown, Science and Theology News, April 2004. ( Log Out /  In November 2010, the issue of abortion and Buddhism in Thailand was thrust onto the front pages after 2000 fetuses were discovered stored at a temple in Bangkok. What the "Finger Pointing to the Moon" analogy really means - from Zen Buddhism, the Buddha in the Shurangama Sutra, The Buddha's guidelines on how to look after your money, The first 49 days after death - the Earthstore Sutra. The decision to abort is therefore a highly personal one, and one that requires careful and compassionate exploration of the ethical issues involved, and a willingness to carry the burden of whatever happens as a result of the decision. Along those lines, His Holiness the Dalai Lama has stated in an interview with the New York Times that " ... abortion should be approved or disapproved according to each circumstance." Contraception that works after the point of conception – would be considered similar to abortion because the new life has formed and then terminated. 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