ReligionMany of the arguments made against assisted dying come from a religious basis. The main source of this religious opposition comes from the Jewish-Christian religions. Out of these, the Roman Catholic Church is the strongest opponent. Islamic and Buddhist faiths also do not agree with euthanasia. The Sikh Darma and Hindu faiths have not taken an official position, and may leave it up to the individual. However, there are individuals within these religions, including ordinary believers and priests, who fully support voluntary euthanasia.
In a 1993 opinion poll carried out for the VES by NOP, most religious people who were surveyed were in favour of medical aid in dying. Whilst 93% of people without religious belief supported this, 83% of Protestants, 73% of Roman Catholics and 60% of Jews were also in favour.
There are three basic arguments Jewish and Christian authorities make against helping a person to die.
killing is forbidden
value of human suffering
None of the religious arguments against assisted dying are relevant to those who do not share those beliefs. And of course, despite these teachings, many of those who are religious do not oppose voluntary euthanasia either. In fact, many of those who support assisted dying do so because of their religious beliefs. To them, helping a person to die can be an expression of Christian compassion and the love and support that Christians offer to those in need.
I understand it, the purpose of life is to love God and to enjoy Him forever.
I believe that voluntary euthanasia can be a means to that end."
believe that those who come after us will wonder why on earth we kept
a human being alive against his will, when all the dignity, beauty and
meaning of life had vanished; when any gain to anyone was clearly impossible,
and when we should have been punished by the state if we had kept alive
an animal in similar conditions."
a Christian and a theologian I am convinced that the all-merciful God,
who has given men and women freedom and responsibility for their lives,
has also left to dying people the responsibility for making a conscientious
decision about the manner and time of their deaths."