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Euthanasia and the Modern Views
A long time ago, culture was universal and permanent. There was one set of beliefs, ideals, and norms, and these were the standard for all human beings in all places and all times. We, however, live in the modern world. Our ethics are not an inheritance of the past, completed and ready for universal application. We are in the situation of having to form our own beliefs and meanings of life. This struggle is now obvious in the contemporary discussions of euthanasia.
Euthanasia derives its origin from two Greek words 'eu' and 'thanatos' which means 'good' and 'death' respectively. Thus the literary meaning of Euthanasia is only "good death". It later came to be known as "mercy killing". Euthanasia is often mistaken or associated with for assisted suicide, a distant cousin of euthanasia, in which "a person wishes to commit suicide but feels unable to perform the act alone because of a physical disability or lack of knowledge about the most effective means. An individual who assists a suicide victim in accomplishing that goal may or may not be held responsible for the death, depending on local laws". Euthanasia on the other hand is defined as "The intentional killing by act or omission of a dependent human being for his or her alleged benefit. …
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