Re: Foeticide and HPB
Nov 03, 1996 03:48 AM
by Eldon B. Tucker
About 14 months ago we had a Fundamentalist Christian on theos-l
telling everyone that abortion was murder and we'd all go to hell.
The issue was discussed then, and I also made an analogy to assisted
One posting I made at the time is repeated below (from
September 20, 1995.) (Note that my comments are in response to
another Theosophist on the list at the time, and not to the
>It would seem that abortion is murder, whatever may be the age of
>the fetus. It may be the karma of the incoming soul (manas) to lose the
>vehicle INTO WHICH IT HAS NOT YET INCARNATED, but it is not justifiable to
>bring on that karma. It is never right to cause pain or suffering to another
>being, least of all out of self-interest.
The biggest argument against abortion would be made by those with the
Christian notion that a new soul is created for each physical birth,
and therefore we are cheating someone out of their chance for a one-and-only
existence in the physical world. We know better with Theosophy, there is
near-immediate rebirth in the circumstances of an abortion or miscarriage.
One comparison that we can make is to suicide. When a person is ready to
die, should their death be assisted in any manner? Is it too much to
offer them poison or a gun? Could we draw the line at their decision to
stop eating food? One member of the Los Angeles T.S. was dying of cancer,
and when he knew that his time had came, stopped eating, and quietly passed
away that day. Was this wrong?
There is a natural end to life. On a inner level, when we have completely
readied ourselves, we could almost do like some Tibetans, to sit in
meditation, close our eyes, and consciously participate in our physical
death. The time has come and our life energies departed and it happened
naturally, without physical intervention.
Could the same be said of an incoming birth that is proving to be a
mistake? The initial birth was attracted by what was in the minds and
hearts of the parents, perhaps before the time of the sex act and of
the actual physical conception. The incoming person's life energies
interacted with the process and "caused" the particular set of genes
that the new body will have. A process of coming into birth has been
After the start of the birth process, it may later prove to be a
mistake. Perhaps something has changed in one or both of the parents,
where the situation is no longer suitable for rearing of the child.
The change could be inner, or in outer circumstances. If the change
is deeply felt, perhaps we would find a natural miscarriage happening.
The mother's body reacts to the changing situation, reponding to the
now unsuitable birth circumstances.
Certainly, in this day and age, there is no such "natural miscarriage,"
but perhaps in a future age when our bodies are more responsive to
the changes that happen in us, it may appear.
In this day and age, an abortion is like a physician-assisted suicide.
We are using medicine to help out with the termination of a life. We
have decided that it would be the best thing to do. One big question
is: Are we really sure of our decision? We can't change our minds after
the fact. And: Is there a general rule wherein we can always say that
a particular decision is right, or always is wrong? And with this, I'd
say "no," that we need to carefully evaluate each situation on a
case-by-case basis, sometimes with incredible insight required of us,
in order to know what is the right way to proceed.
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