Analysis of an Ethical Dilemma: Voluntary Euthanasia

Subject: Medical Ethics
Pages: 2
Words: 246
Reading time:
< 1 min

The issue of euthanasia is considered an ethical dilemma because this problem has no satisfactory solutions. All the possible solutions can be discussed as exclusive and morally right or wrong when they are analyzed from different perspectives (Burkhardt & Nathaniel, 2008, p. 90-96). Euthanasia is prohibited in relation to the Hippocratic Oath where it is stated that physicians must “never assist in suicide or practice euthanasia, nor suggest it” (Lahl, 2012, p. 39). There are no strict legal regulations concerning the problem which are adopted universally, and the supporters of euthanasia accentuate the role of personal autonomy and choice along with the individuals’ rights and freedom as the basics to make decisions about euthanasia (Lahl, 2012, p. 40).

The possibility of euthanasia is discussed only with references to the secular world when spiritual leaders are definitely against the practice. According to the interviewed Catholic pastor, euthanasia must be prohibited because it is a kind of homicide or suicide, and it is the open denial of God’s power. Persons have no right to decide about one’s death because it’s only God’s right. Furthermore, sufferings are the source of blessings and values in the Christian tradition, and euthanasia is the first step to making the society ‘productive’ when anyone can become the victim of euthanasia because of having some unsatisfactory features. According to Lahl, these views are characteristic for those who share the Christian tradition, but they are often meaningless within the public square (Lahl, 2012, p. 40).


Burkhardt, M. A., & Nathaniel, A. K. (2008). Ethics issues in contemporary nursing. Clifton Park, NY: Delmar Cengage Learning.

Lahl, J. (2012). Thank God Hippocrates was pagan. Human Life Review, 38(2), 39-42.