Bioethics: Genesis, Essence, Futurity

  1. Lemma
  2. ბიოეთიკა: გენეზისი, არსი, მერმისი
  3. English
  4. Pataridze, Tamara
  5. Ethics - Scientific theories and disciplines > Biology
  6. 2012
  7. Bioethics: Genesis, Essence, Futurity
  8. bioethics
    1. At the beginning of his book the author introduces the definition of bioethics as an unification of biomedical knowledge and values that are common to all mankind. The book discusses several relevant issues linked to the bioethics, such as its genesis and subject; an assessment of historical, scientific and philosophical preconditions of its formation as an independent science; theoretical basics of genesis of bioethics; main conceptions about a human, his essence and nature according to the medical-biological and anthropological studies; Life, death, health, illness as basic categories of bioethics; Principles of investigation of the essence of human nature in medical-biological and anthropological studies; Essence of the conception of bioethical anthropology; Bioethical problems and dilemmas on the current stage of the development of the world community; Prognostication and prevention; possibilities of the integration of canonic and scientific ideologies in fundamental bioethics and others.

      The author argues that the perception of the essence of the contemporary bioethical problems makes it essential to rely on natural-scientific, namely – biomedical principles of truth perception. The proposed research deals with the following tasks: to investigate the process of arising bioethical problems; to investigate historical appropriateness of the genesis of bioethics; to determine the role and the place of bioethics within the systems of medical, natural and humanitarian sciences and healthcare; to develop scientific basis for dealing with bioethical problems via investigation of historical development of basic studies of life, death, health, illness, essence and nature of a human being; to properly evaluate the possibilities of dealing with ethical-legal, spiritual-moral and philosophical-axiological problems from historical- religious and cultural-social point of view and via prognostication of the future of mankind.

      The author suggests that alongside with the achievements in the sphere of biomedicine, development, applying and introduction of postindustrial technologies
in hospitals, global negative consequences can be discerned that make the world community think about different ethical dilemmas. The danger of practical realization of some (particularly genetic) technologies implies that the world has to choose between the survival of mankind 
or the intensification of approach of apocalyptic final. Theologians consider the perception of responsibility and differentiation of good and evil as one of the most complex processes and this definitely is connected to the sphere of ethics.

      This can be illustrated on the example of the “brain death”, as conception. Indeed, despite the fact that death of brain is legally accepted, the issue whether this conception entailed more good than evil still remains disputable and here’s the reason why: many professionals working in the sphere of transplantology aren’t completely sure whether people with the diagnosis of “brain death” are really dead. Conscience might sometimes concede if 
somebody himself turns to be a participant of transplantation of human organs. However, the fact that the society supports the mortification of indisputably incurable people and it becomes morally acceptable, it might change human attitude towards life and stop considering it as sacred. Brain death becomes more and more acute. However, according to the author, its supporters, trying to defend their opinion in bioethical aspect, are inclined towards the single argument that is called loss of personality in materialistic-reductionist interpretation. Consequently, studies about the brain death develop
in this direction and in contrast to high axiological, religious and other human values of life. For example, suggestions related to the utilization of newborn children with anencephaly, or patients with stable vegetative condition, as sources for transplantation of organs that was absolutely unthinkable in the past, are seriously discussed today. Besides, the notion of “brain death” gave birth to its “mirror reflection” –“life of brain” that serves as justification of abortion and other kinds 
of experiments on human embryos. Though there’s no brain within 
the developing embryo, it’s difficult to find more intact and cohesive organism. The idea of “brain life” contradicts with physiological imagination about integrated unification and comes from reductionist approach towards death that implies loss of consciousness and personality that is the rational foundation of the concept “brain death”. Considering all the above mentioned facts we have to discuss the following issue – wouldn’t it be better if we substitute the dogma about the brain death with something more scientific and philosophical that would be more trustworthy and wouldn’t touch the values and sanctity of human life and in this way would make modern biology and medicine less vulnerable from the bioethical point of view?

      The question – What is the sense and value of human illness? – is decisive for studying the number of bioethical dilemmas like euthanasia and transplantation, such as euthanasia of incurable patients; euthanasia of newborns with hereditary illnesses, defects in development and with deformities; Spiritual-ethical-psychological problems of donor or recipient;

      According to the author the wide application of artificial reproductive technologies might entail serious consequences: manipulation with human nature, sex selection, selection of genetic characteristics and phenotype, “genetic- molecular disaster”, existence of old women in childbirth, etc. “bioethical essence if euthanasia” investigated those different negative consequences that might follow the legalization of euthanasia. Each attempt of legalization of euthanasia is considered to be the evil and criminal act towards people, society, future and even God. As a matter of fact, euthanasia represents either murder (if it is carried out according to the decision of doctors or according to the demand of a patient’s relatives), or a suicide (if it is carried out according to the request of the patient himself), or the special form of their mixture. Ideology of euthanasia is considered to be morally and ethically unacceptable. If we legalize the attempts of applying euthanasia and register them in the legislative acts, that means that we permeate 
the human consciousness with the idea that murder and suicide are admissible with the help of medicine (healthcare), that definitely will cause the loss of confidence towards the institute of healthcare and provoke the misinterpretation of its professional obligation.

      Bioethical problematic situations are reflections of antagonistic correlations of human and nature, society and sacral. Human violates steadiness, intactness and the order of the world and assists re appearance of prognostic dangerous conflict situations which, according to their essence, might be ecological, bioethical, bio-political, bio-philosophical, social-biological, etc. In the genesis of problematic situations we might distinguish contradiction – it is characterized not only with its consumer attitude towards the nature, society, sacral, but also with its dissatisfaction with the results gained from such correlations. This dissatisfaction instigates towards the activity that changes the nature, society and attitude towards sacral. The last
is revealed through the escape from God, religious, church: paganism, idolatry, atheism, Protestantism, the tendencies of repudiation of life: suicide, abortion and contraception, euthanasia, eugenics, etc. We 
can ascertain that the humanity has entered the third, critical phase. Prevention of global problems, i.e. favorable prognosis in relation to the survival of humanity depends on sincerity of the wish of its overcoming, strength of determination of each human and the whole world community, and which values will be predominant.

      Existence of civilization within deteriorating biosphere, revelation of symptoms of deep crisis gives us the right to predict the next phase will be the phase of catastrophe (apocalypses). For its prevention it’s important to take into consideration that the way to humanization of all spheres of life and human activity on the planet goes through changes within the hierarchy of spiritual-moral-values, in correlation of human and life, in correlation between the life philosophy and philosophy of activity.

      In XX century human tried to 
take the place that historically belonged to ideas, nature and God, and ontologically – only to God. Human considered himself to be the creator of new values and subvertor of old ones. At the same time, creation doesn’t imply simply making new things, it also implies implementation of essentials, serve Him, that is above human and humility towards Him. Only through recognition of the values of world, nature, other people and existed cultural traditions (national and religious among them), humanity can be preserved, sustained and developed. In the conclusion of his research the author tries to reveal and scientifically prove the existence of the intellectual possibilities in fundamental bioethics that potentially can contribute 
to the integration of faith and knowledge, religious –theological and scientific ideologies.