#RepealThe8th: Critically discussing Article 40.3.3, including its identification of equating the life of the foetus to the life of the mother.

O’Toole (2013) declares “Ireland is a little dot of backwardness in a sea of progressive reproductive values” due to the Eighth Amendment of the Irish Constitution. The Eighth Amendment, less commonly known as Article 40.3.3, was approved in 1983 and states: “The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.” (Irish Statute Book, 1983). This has come to mean a near-absolute prohibition on abortion in Irish law because successive Irish governments have understood the Eighth Amendment to mean that the rights of the foetus outweigh the rights of the mother – and, subsequently, that foetus has the right to life. In other words, Article 40.3.3 equates the life of the foetus to that of the mother. Today however, there is a campaign to repeal Article 40.3.3, including the Twitter movement #RepealThe8th (Twitter, 2018). This has prompted the Irish government to hold a referendum on the 25th of May 2018, which will ask voters whether they want to repeal Article 40.3.3 (Bardon, 2018). If Ireland votes in favour of the repeal, the Irish government have said that it will introduce legislation that will allow unrestricted abortions up to 12 weeks of pregnancy (McDonald and Sherwood, 2018).

Continue reading “#RepealThe8th: Critically discussing Article 40.3.3, including its identification of equating the life of the foetus to the life of the mother.”

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Evaluate Nietzsche’s claim that the Hindu caste system is “merely the ratification of an order of nature”.

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 – 1900) claimed that the Hindu caste system was simply the ratification of an order of nature in his book The Anti-Christ (1895) – “The order of castes, the supreme, the dominating law, is only the sanctioning of a natural order” (Nietzsche, 2003a: p. 189). Arguably, this claim by Nietzsche is an expression of how much he admires the Hindu caste system. However, much of Nietzsche’s philosophy greatly criticises the Christian faith, and he attempts to construct an alternative to the views and values held by Christianity. His references to Hinduism are no exception and he uses Hinduism to discredit and attack the notion of Christianity. Therefore, the purpose of this essay is to critically discuss the extent of how the Hindu caste system reflects the work of Nietzsche. This essay will do this by first discussing the context of ‘Nietzsche’s India’ – a term used by David Smith (2004) – and how it could ultimately impact his thoughts surrounding the Hindu caste system. Moreover, this essay will discuss Nietzsche’s ignorance of the racist origins of the caste system and prominent Nietzschean themes particularly relating to his criticism of democracy. Ultimately, this essay will conclude that the context in which Nietzsche understood Hinduism is paramount, and that his ‘beloved’ caste system does not allow for the principles he preaches.

Continue reading “Evaluate Nietzsche’s claim that the Hindu caste system is “merely the ratification of an order of nature”.”

Breathe.

Go to a coffee shop. Sit by the bar with the glass windows and look out. Look at all the people running to catch a train. All the girls with one too many shopping bags. All the couples too in love to care. Then you’ll see it – a bit of yourself in everyone. And somehow, sitting alone in a coffee shop had never felt so good.

– note to self

(unknown)

Currently, I am in my third year of my undergraduate degree.

My final year.

My final semester.

*gulp*

People weren’t kidding when they said that the three years would fly by.

Continue reading “Breathe.”

On what grounds might a Buddhist reject the existence of God?

The term ‘God’ is used in a varied number of connotations. Helmuth Von Glasenapp (1970: p. 15) describes ‘God’ in three ways. Firstly, in the most general sense ‘God’ takes on the meaning of supernatural beings that are prayed to or made images of by humankind. Secondly, in a Judaeo-Christian sense, ‘God’ is the name of the one eternal and supernatural personal being who created the world and, thus, rules over it. Finally, ‘God’ in philosophy takes on the meaning of the Absolute – the impersonal ens realissimum (Latin for ‘the most real being’) – which is the ground that it does not matter whether it (or He) coexists with the world, surrounds the world, or is active within the world. Therefore, despite the various meanings relating to the term ‘God’, this essay will focus on the Judaeo-Christian concept and, in so doing, examine the grounds on which a Buddhist might reject the existence of God.

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