1. Murder, Suicide and Abortion: Crimes against Life

 

You shall not kill.

Exodus 20.13

 

A man who contributes to the killing of a believer—even with a single word—will meet Allah on the Judgment Day, with the judgment upon his forehead, “excluded from the mercy of his Lord.”

Sunnan Ibn Majah 2.2620 (Islam)

 

Do not take life—which God has made sacred—except for just cause.

Qur’an 17.33

 

A man once came before Raba and said to him, “The ruler of my city has ordered me to kill a certain person, and if I refuse he will kill me.” Raba told him, “Be killed and do not kill; do you think that your blood is redder than his? Perhaps his is redder than yours.”

Talmud, Pesahim 25b (Judaism)

 

All tremble at the rod. All fear death. Comparing others with oneself, one should neither strike nor cause to strike.

All tremble at the rod. Life is dear to all. Comparing others with oneself, one should neither strike nor cause to strike.

Whoever, seeking his own happiness, harms with the rod other pleasure-loving beings, experiences no happiness hereafter.

Whoever, seeking his own happiness, harms not with the rod other pleasure-loving beings, experiences happiness hereafter.

Dhammapada 129-32 (Buddhism)

 

And do not kill yourselves, for verily God has been to you Most Merciful.

Qur’an 4.29

 

“Maybe if Juda has not killed himself, he could have received the forgiveness from God for what he had done (to deliver Jesus to the Romans).”

 

“Surely your blood of your lives will I require” [Genesis 9.5]. This includes suicide, except in a case like that of Saul.

Genesis Rabbah 34.13 (Judaism)

 

“We belong to God and we cannot take our lives.”

 

A monk who intentionally deprives a human being of his life, or provides the means for suicide, or praises death, or incites one to commit suicide, saying, “Of what use to you is this evil, difficult life? Death is better for you than life”... commits an offense entailing loss of monkhood.

Vinaya Pitaka (Buddhism)

 

“Even inciting somebody to commit a suicide is considered as evil.”

“We can think about the people doing EXIT in Switzerland and the ones helping them in that process. Or the medical doctors who are doing the abortions.”

 

Slay not your children, fearing a fall to poverty. We shall provide for them and for you. Truly, the slaying of them is a great sin.

Qur’an 17.31

 

“Poverty in different meanings.”

 

A bhikkhu who intentionally kills a human being, down to procuring abortion, is no ascetic and no follower of the Fraternity of the Buddha.

Vinaya, Mahavagga 1.78.4 (Buddhism)

 

When the sacredness of life before birth is attacked, we still stand up and proclaim that no one ever has the authority to destroy unborn life.

Pope John Paul II8 (Christianity)

 

Indeed for us murder is forbidden once and for all, so it is not permitted even to destroy what is conceived in the womb. To prohibit the birth of a child is only a faster way to murder; it makes little difference whether one destroys a life already born or prevents it from coming to birth. It is a human being, who is to be a human being, for the whole fruit is already present in the seed.

Tertullian, Apology 9.8 (Christianity)

 

"The Catholic Church maintained this ethic." 

"The children born with a handicap are also human beings with great value. They can do great things."

"An astrophysicist just passed away recently, he had a degenerative disease and the doctors predicted that he will die in a few years after the diagnostic. He actually became a famous astrophysicist and lived many years, more that what was predicted from the doctors."

 

Teachings of Sun Myung Moon

 

The preservation of human rights and human dignity must be the measure of all ethics and morality. (168:238, September 21, 1987)

 

How does the present administration handle the issue of human rights? In North Korea, the regime of Kim Il-Sung has exterminated three million people. Mao Zedong is responsible for the deaths of 150 million people. In Russia during the Bolshevik Revolution seven million lost their lives. The New York Times reported that 600,000 people have been killed since the fall of Vietnam... How can we talk about human rights while ignoring communism that tramples on the right to life itself? Which is more important: human rights or the right to life? (91:255, February 23, 1977)

 

If on the street you met an enemy, a person whom your family hates and even all Americans hate, would it be alright to murder him? How could it be a sin? Yet no matter how vile or detestable that person might be, he has the same cosmic value as you, because he was made by the Creator. Killing him is a crime, a violation of the universal law. (105:92, September 30, 1979)

 

Why is a human being’s physical life so precious? Without it, the cosmos cannot be brought to perfection, and even God cannot attain perfection. Our physical life is so precious... that it cannot be exchanged for the entire universe. This is the meaning of the Bible verse, “For what will it profit a man if he gains the world and forfeits his life?” (91:19, February 13, 1977)

 

“God can attain perfection through His creation, when for example a couple can be united and becomes perfect. If a parent has children and grandchildren, he/she can experiment more things and develop him/herself. It’s thanks to our physical body that we can perfect ourselves and God is living through us.”

 

Your most worthy parents need you. Your spouse needs you. Your brothers need you. Your family needs you. The nation needs you. The world needs you. Even the spirit world and the whole cosmos need you. Even God needs you. How can you think that you are unimportant?…

            When you say, “No one needs me,” you are doing wrong to all of them. You are doing wrong to your parents, your future spouse, your brothers, your family, the nation, the world, heaven and earth, and God. You are violating their love and the law of love.
            A person who commits suicide sins in all these ways. So many people commit suicide—how can they do such a thing! You should never even dream of killing yourself. (74:30 November 10, 1974)

 

“Some people who have everything want to kill themselves, while others who don’t have anything try everything to survive, even crossing the sea on a little boat overcrowded.”

 

Once a baby is conceived, you must not abort it. You never know who that baby could grow up to be: maybe a saint, maybe someone who could save America, maybe even the President of the United States. So how can you destroy it as you wish? What if my mother had exercised her “right to choose” like people do today? I would not have been born.
            Therefore, abortion [within a proper marital relationship] is a sin. Each fetus represents the parents’ love, life and lineage. It is human; how can anyone consider it merely an animal? What is that cell that forms at conception? It is very much a human being! Within that single cell are human beings’ love, life and lineage. Therefore, it represents the parents and has the same value as the parents. The father’s love and mother’s love are contained within that would-be baby.10 (230:120, April 26, 1992)

 

“When an embryo is conceived, there is a recombination of the genes between the ovule and the spermatozoid. It is an amazing creation and each embryo will be different. Maybe there is already a spiritual guidance from God or a spirit form in the embryo at the moment of the fusion between the two cells.”

 

Suppose a husband and wife give birth to a child with a deformity. Do they terminate its life and say, “Well, we can try again”? Is that true love? No, of course it is not. (117:292, April 11, 1982)

 

 

Written by Noëmie Komagata-Nguyen 

Internationales Jahr der Familie / Année internationale de la Famille

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