Bioethics

William Wilberforce & Bioethics

Movies often help the eye see what the imagination conjures up. Director Michael Apted’s account of the heroic life of William Wilberforce in the movie Amazing Grace is a case in point. Chronicling Wilberforce’s two-decade fight to abolish the British slave trade, the film is well-acted, visually stunning, and morally weighty. Ioan Gruffudd plays a convincing and youthful Wilberforce caught in the tension of his desire to serve the God who recently found him and his passion to see the slave trade in England halted. Should he devote himself wholly to God or should he continue to invest himself in Archimedean task of parliamentary reform? His answer comes through the counsel of a friend who affirms: "you can be both a Christian and an activist."

Podcast Episode: 
43

Bioethics: The Future of Human Dignity

Bioethicists are fond of referring to the 21st century as the "Biotech Century." And it is truly amazing the kinds of advances that have already occurred in the past six years. Many people with previously untreatable diseases such as brain cancer, lymphoma, lupus, sickle cell anemia, and more are being effectively treated with adult stem cells. Genetic diseases heretofore impossible to treat are beginning to be cured. Advances in curing some types of reproductive problems are allowing couples to have children, giving hope to thousands.

But these new powers over the human body—down to the sub-cellular level—have powers that can do great harm and undermine the innate dignity of every human being.

Podcast Episode: 
42

Dr. Joy Riley Interviews Phillipa Taylor

Dr. D. Joy Riley, Executive Director of the Tennessee Center for Bioethics and Culture, interviews Phillipa Taylor, consultant on bioethics for the London-based organization Care.

Podcast Episode: 
41

Public Language and the Common Good

Issues: 

Lee Silver, professor of molecular biology and public affairs at Princeton, recently published another provocative book. Challenging Nature: The Clash of Science and Spirituality at the New Frontiers of Life is a 400-page rant favoring his own version of scientism against nearly every form of religion and spirituality. His is an equal opportunity harangue. Anyone who is skeptical about Silver’s optimism about some kind of techno-utopian future gets blasted, whether Catholic, evangelical, green, Mother Nature worshipper, or something else.

Podcast Episode: 
25

Encontrar lo humano en la bioética cristiana

Traducción: Alejandro Field

¿Es esto, por cierto, amor: querer encontrarlo fuera de uno mismo? Yo pensaba que esto es amor: traer amor junto con uno. Pero quien trae amor junto con uno al buscar un objeto para su amor (en caso contrario, es mentira que esté buscando un objeto para su amor) encontrará fácilmente, y más fácilmente cuanto mayor es el amor en él, el objeto, y encontrará que es algo capaz de ser amado.

-- Kierkegaard, Las obras del amor.

Podcast Episode: 
10

Celling Out: Bioethics and the Culture of Cool

Issues: 

A buddy of mine from college, one of the few with whom I still maintain regular contact, is convinced that I misplaced my brain somewhere over the course of the last eleven years. He would never say as much, of course, but I have seen it in his eyes on several occasions, especially when we're discussing politics or science. It's the  sort of look normally reserved for someone who is pontificating loudly while drunk—wry and pitying and full of mock interest.

Podcast Episode: 
13

Finding the Human in Christian Bioethics

Is this indeed love, to want to find it outside oneself? I thought that this is love, to bring love along with oneself. But the one who brings love along with himself as he searches for an object for his love (otherwise it is a lie that he is searching for an object — for his love) will easily, and the more easily the greater the love in him, find the object and find it to be such that it is lovable.

-- Kierkegaard,Works of Love, 157.

Podcast Episode: 
10

Bioethics for Believers: The Role of the Church in Matters of Life and Health

Issues: 

During the last quarter of the 20th Century, Christian thinker Francis Schaeffer and pediatric surgeon C. Everett Koop embarked on a project to equip the church on the crucial issue of abortion and warn of the looming threats against human life and dignity. Their book and video series,Whatever Happened to the Human Race, contributed to the awakening of evangelical Christians from their cultural slumber. It sounded a call to action and birthed a movement that seeks to protect human life and dignity, moved to care and act on behalf of the most vulnerable in our society.

Podcast Episode: 
8

Autonomy and Community in Biblical Perspective

Issues: 

How are we to evaluate the Western tradition of autonomy from the perspective of Scripture? What resources can the Christian theological tradition bring to help temper the corrosive effects of autonomy and individualism today?

Podcast Episode: 
2

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