Faith and Reason and Physician-Assisted Suicide

Christian Bioethics 4 (2):183-201 (1998)
Aquinas's conception of the relationship of faith and reason calls into question the arguments and some of the conclusions advanced in contributions to the debate on physician-assisted suicide by David Thomasma and H. Tristram Engelhardt. An understanding of the nature of theology as based on revelation calls into question Thomasma's theological argument in favor of physician-assisted suicide based on the example of Christ and the martyrs. On the other hand, unaided reason calls into question his assumptions about the nature of death as in some cases a good for the human person. Finally, if Aquinas is right about the relationship of faith and reason, Engelhardt's sharp contrast between “Christian” and “secular” approaches to physician-assisted suicide needs reconsideration, although his conclusions about physician assisted suicide would find support
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