Right to Death – Part 7

Voluntary Death from the Historical and Philosophical Perspective

Hinduism and Buddhism allow prayopaveshan since it is a non violent, calm and much time taking way of ending life and it occurs by starving oneself to death at the right time, i.e. when the person has achieved his aims in life and finished performing all the duties and responsibilities that were assigned to him and his body becomes a burden. Prayopaveshan is for people who are content with their lives. While on the other hand, suicide is a sudden act and associated with the feelings of anger, frustration, depression, i.e. people who are not content with their lives have a tendency to commit suicide which is why it is not allowed by any of these religions. Though there is a division of views regarding euthanasia in Buddhism, the most common view is that voluntary euthanasia should not be permitted. Again, there are two views of Hinduism regarding euthanasia which are contradictory, one is supporting euthanasia as a moral deed and another is considering euthanasia as a bad deed which disturbs the life and death cycle.

The idea of willful death is traceable to Socrates, Plato and Stoics in ancient Greek and Roman Philosophy as well. In ancient Greece and Rome, helping others to put end to their lives was also permitted in certain situations. The Roman Catholic Church regards euthanasia as morally wrong since it has always taught how important the commandment “you shall not kill” is.

Suicide, Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia

Suicide: Suicide is one way to exercise the right to die. Generally when people are not content with their lives they choose to commit suicide. This discontentment can arise due to various factors such as mental disease, unbearable physical ailments, and affliction by socially dreaded diseases, depression or losing all kinds of interests to live or a sense of shame or disgrace, physical disability and many other such factors.

Assisted Suicide: Assisted suicide happens when another person assists the person who is willing to commit suicide, with all the guidance and tools to take his own life, with the intention that whatever he is providing the person with will be used for fulfilling this purpose only.

Euthanasia: It can be defined as the intentional killing by act or omission of a dependent human being for his or her alleged benefit. Active Euthanasia means a positive merciful act to end meaningless existence. It is an act of commission. Passive euthanasia means to let die. It implies discontinuing life sustaining measures that will prolong life. It can also include an act of omission such as failure to resuscitate a terminally ill patient or not carrying out a life extending operation, etc.

Both euthanasia and assisted suicide are considered illegal in many countries since they can amount to murder in disguise. In India, euthanasia is punishable under clause 1 of section 300 of IPC. Non Voluntary and Involuntary Euthanasia is struck down by proviso 1 to section 92 of the IPC Regulation 6.7 of the Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002 also declares euthanasia as an unethical act.

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

Do follow me on FacebookTwitter  Youtube and Instagram.

The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

If you would also like to contribute to my website, then do share your articles or poems at adv.aishwaryasandeep@gmail.com

We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

You may also like to read:

Do we need to relook our caste reservation system ? – Aishwarya Sandeep

Solution to the Israel and Palestine Conflict – 7 – Aishwarya Sandeep

How Indian Women in Rural Areas are fighting Menstrual Taboo – Part 4 – Aishwarya Sandeep

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