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Anonymous asked in Society & CultureReligion & Spirituality · 10 months ago

Jewish Question: Is it possible for a person with a terminal illness to get permission to to use assisted suicide?

2 Answers

  • Anonymous
    10 months ago
    Favorite Answer

    The Jewish tradition regards the preservation of human life as one of its supreme moral values and forbids doing anything that might shorten life. However, it does not require doctors to make dying last longer than it naturally would.

    ...The message of Judaism is that one must struggle until the last breath of life. Until the last moment, one has to live and rejoice and give thanks to the Creator...

    Dr Rachamim Melamed-Cohen, Jewsweek, March, 2002

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  • 10 months ago

    Jews don't believe in Heaven and Hell, but they do believe in sin. Orthodox Jews officially see suicide as a sin, and assisted suicide as even worse. Reform Jews are a little looser in their feelings.

    But Judaism is a very practical religion. For instance, the kashrut tells you what you may and may not eat, but if kosher food isn't available you can eat whatever you can get your hands on. You're not required to starve to death for your religious principles! In the real world I think a reform rabbi might allow a terminally-ill patient in terrible pain to ask for assisted suicide. (I don't know if the state or the American Medical Assoc. would allow it though.) Sin is bad but living in terrible, untreatable pain for weeks or months is also bad.

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