Some religions have followers who refuse to accept blood transfusions, and other religions actually prohibit medical intervention of any kind. They believe that prayer alone will save those who are ill or injured, and if it doesn’t that it was “God’s will” for that person to die.
Those of us who don’t belong to those religions tend to shake our heads and feel that they are being unreasonable. After all, if medicine and/or medical knowledge is available, why should we allow our loved ones to suffer or even die without making use of it? Some would even argue that “God’s will” has allowed us to create the life-saving hospitals and medicines in the first place. Surely, if we love someone we will do everything in our power to save them, won’t we? We pray, but we also avail ourselves of doctors and hospitals.
The question we must then ask ourselves when someone we love is suffering is: At what point are we just prolonging the inevitable demise of a person? Is it “living” if we are not aware of what is going on around us and can’t breathe by ourselves, or talk, or feed ourselves and have no control at all over our bodies? How much is too much? (more…)