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Venus Retrograde – Let’s talk about death!   Leave a comment

The Venus Retrograde makes a square to Saturn, I like Saturn it is the truly democratic planet, it represents realities that apply to all of us equally. One of these realities is death!  Death is democratic we are all going to die, whether we jog for hours and live on muesli and soya beans or not.  This is the democracy of Saturn we’ll all die but if we want more years in nappies /diaper at the end, we can choose to forgo pleasures that take years off our lifespan and take the gamble that we won’t be hit by a bus.

We are all going to die and some of us may choose the time and place, actively participate in true democracy.  We call this suicide or voluntary active / passive euthanasia. Voluntary means we choose our democratic ending.  Involuntary passive euthanasia has always been practised by doctors, they have lists for those who need transplants but supply has always meant doctors choosing who should die and who should get op, this is all that passive euthanasia is non-treatment now in UK people can voluntarily choose non-treatment in order to die.  Involuntary active euthanasia is also practised by doctors, doctors can give lethal doses of pain killers as long as it is to relieve pain and not to end life – they carry out an action that will kill their patient. In some countries people have the right to choose active euthanasia this is voluntary active euthanasia, they choose when they are given lethal dose.

Suicide is when we decide to end out life and choose a means, whether jumping from height, lethal overdose, fatal wounding or any other means. generally there are two reasons for suicide depression or despair. Depression is a medical condition caused by a chemical imbalance within the brain and is treatable although often incurable. Despair is a part of what defines humanity, it goes hand in hand with freedom.  The history of humanity is one in which the fight for freedom has taken centre stage, absolute freedom has only ever been achieved in death but when our freedoms are repressed to a centre level that human response has been despair – for humans, life is only ever valuable if it contains a certain proportion of freedom.  For each of us that level of freedom may vary but we all have a point where living without certain freedoms causes despair, since despair is not a medical condition but a necessary condition of being human we can choose to numb our humanity by drugs or decide to stop living if we have no means of changing our circumstance. That is why it is important to recognise the difference between depression and despair, despair at working long hours for little money cannot be cured by medicine but only by change of circumstance, as would despair at being trapped in loveless marriage due to financial reasons, doctors may give medication to numb the despair but it is not a medical condition.

The history of humanity is one where we have constantly been arguing over what are the right things to do in these various circumstances, if somebody with depression is also in despair we can only effectively treat one and numb the other, but we may also be blinded by their depression to their despair.  These issues are fraught with emotion and many cultures have completely different attitudes to them dependent on belief systems. There are two main philosphical ethics that deal with this.

Kantian ethics, Kant says that committing suicide because of pain is immoral because ability of humans for reason, thus it is our reason kant finds sacred, note those with conditions that affect reason such as Dementia or learning difficulties do not fall into Kant’s catagory.  Kantian ethicists may expand this argument to euthanasia, they and disability rights groups may argue that suicide and euthanasia should be prevented and treated as depression failing to note difference between depression and despair.  The Kantian model is partially why doctors often choose aged with sound mind over teenagers with Downs Syndrome for the latter group often have an impairment of reason.  The main problem with this argument is that often it is not ‘pain’ that is the issue but despair of which pain may be merely a symptom of a condition that removes freedoms beyond a tolerable limit for individual. It also means that there is no Kantian objection to euthanasia because of Dementia which means treating people differently due to medical condition.

Utilitarian ethics, this says that we apply the hedonistic formula to decide the right choice.  The hedonistic formula measures how happy or unhappy we would be with a choice. For example it may be argued that involuntary euthanasia of over 75’s would save money, however the displeasure I and relatives would feel at the decision to exterminate my mother would be greater by far than the pleasure gained from financial benefit.  The opposite is also true the displeasure I would feel at a parent being forced to endure unnecessary pain from a terminal illness, would be greater by far than any pleasure religious groups got from ensuring ‘we endured to the end’. The main problem with Utilitarian philosophy is that while utilitarian philosophers may argue about which course is more ethical all decisions come down to the hedonistic formula, irrespective of arguments over right and wrong for many this seems to bypass the need for justice or fairness.

In reality when it comes to medical ethics both systems are used together to find compromise, but as with all philosophical outlooks real life is often very complex and can often fail to offer black and white answers to human questions that are thousands of years old.  In reality there are no simple answers to questions over suicide and euthanasia, like life itself these are complex issues but ones we must face in life.

©neptunes aura astrology

 

 

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Posted July 23, 2015 by neptune's Aura Astrology in musings

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