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Title: Anthropology in bioethics : the interface between faith and reason
Authors: Calleja, Carlo
Keywords: Philosophical anthropology
Issue Date: 2016
Abstract: This work argues for a return to a robust philosophical anthropology as one of the indispensable tools for sound bioethical decision making in contemporary society. It is held that rigorous reflection on the human being, studied holistically and with reference to tradition can enable us to reach sound conclusions amid complex bioethical dilemmas. An outline of contemporary society, characterised by the anthropologic crisis is first offered, together with an exploration of its roots, including the malaises of modernity, the Godless society, secularism and transhumanism. The differences between philosophical anthropology and cultural anthropology, especially with reference to cultural relativism is also presented. The convergent and divergent views on the human person are then analysed chronologically, starting from the Aristotelian-Thomistic body-soul unitive concept of the human person, compared with the later trend of the Cartesian body-mind dualist view. It is shown that the different views of the understanding of the human being form the basis of divergences on bioethical issues in general. This is demonstrated by referring to the thorny end of life dilemmas which are becoming increasingly common and troublesome as biotechnological advances continue to develop further. The different issues related to the euthanasia – dysthanasia continuum are discussed, together with how reference to a robust philosophical anthropology are conducive to embracing a timely death as the apt conclusion of one’s life. The nexus between anthropology and bioethics proves to be essential if sound bioethical decisions are to be made. For this to be possible however, an honest and humble understanding of what it means to be human is needed: a task which must depend as much on reason, as enlightened by faith.
Description: S.TH.L.
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacThe - 2016

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