05 March 2010

Life and death

I have no choice when I came into this world. My parents gave me the life - their choice. No matter how life has confronted me, I am forever grateful for the chance of this experience. I am really lucky too, to be born as a member of the most developed species on this planet. I also really lucky that I was born after WWII and have enjoyed a peaceful life.

After birth, I am on my journey to eventual death. I believe when I die, my body will disintegrate and my mind will just go blank - a sleep which never wakes again.

At the early age, the problem of death is not apparent. After all, unless some accident which may take my life, I was expecting to live for quite a while yet. The issue of death is whether there is a cause which I am willing to give up my life for. Obviously, I have found none and I am still alive today. This world, however, has created situations where someone is willing to die for a cause. This is insane!

Some point in time, eventually, the question will switch over to whether there is anything that's worth living for. The evolution duty is to reproduce. I have passed that stage now. I want to see my daughter grow up - almost there. When my health, not that I am now, is at a stage when life is miserable, causes a lot of troubles to people around me and as I look around there is nothing that life is worth living, do I have the right to say "yes, this is it".

That's about the right of making one's final decision. Who has the right to stop this?

When a patient is on life-support, in obvious pain, has nothing worth living, who has the right to stop this patient to ask for switching off the life-support system? Some may say that one should not play god. Well the life-support system is playing god. Without it, the patient would have died. Why it is so difficult for a terminally ill patient to make a final decision for himself? What right one has to stop this person to make that choice?

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