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Suffering and Bioethics$
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Ronald M. Green and Nathan J. Palpant

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199926176

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199926176.001.0001

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Human Suffering through Illness in the Context of Islamic Bioethics

Human Suffering through Illness in the Context of Islamic Bioethics

(p.296) 15 Human Suffering through Illness in the Context of Islamic Bioethics
Suffering and Bioethics

Abdulaziz Sachedina

Oxford University Press

This chapter aims to provide an overall sense of Islamic ethical discourse in the complexity of bioethical pluralism in the Muslim world. The author follows principle-based deontological-teleological ethics that serves as the foundation of Islamic legal-ethical investigation. The deontological ethical norm in Islamic jurisprudence determines the rightness (or wrongness) of actions without regard to the consequences produced by performing such actions. By contrast, the teleological norm determines the rightness (or wrongness) of actions on the basis of their consequences produced by performing these actions. Human suffering is largely attributed to this human ability to choose between possible courses of action and, in some sense, endure the outcome. Although Islam emphasizes God’s omniscience and omnipotence to control or inflict suffering, suffering is closely related to a person’s spiritual development. It is in this sense that, in Islam, spirituality is linked to morality. Moral decisions necessarily reflect one’s spiritual station in one’s journey to God.

Keywords:   Islam, ethics, bioethical pluralism, deontology, teleology, suffering

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