Should doctors tell JW patients that there is disagreement about Watchtower's blood policy.
That is your belief and if you like it, believe it.
Invoking a partial predicate as an independent construction is grammatically incorrect. That is not a matter of subjective belief.
Now, may I ask you, what error do you believe that I made?
In English, "abstain" is intransitive. It does not take a direct object and neither does it transfer action from subject to object. When the word, "abstain" is used in connection with a finite act, it negates that act. "Abstain from fornication" is a semantic equivalent to, "Do not fornicate."
"Blood" is not a finite act though. Blood is a physical object and therefore does not have a verb form. When the word, "abstain" is used in connection with a physical object, like blood, a transitive verb is necessary to transfer action from subject to object and complete the thought.
What would it mean to, "abstain from boat?" What would it mean to, "abstain from sky?" What would it mean to "abstain from shrubbery?" What would it mean to, "abstain from crankshaft?" Can you state any of these phrases as finite negatives without inserting a transitive verb?
The simple fact is, you can't And that's why these phrases are nonsensical. There is no such thing as abstinence from a physical object. We abstain from acts done in connection with objects and not the objects themselves.
Therefore abstinence in connection with an object is not, as you assert above, a matter of degree. It is a matter of, "what." And the, "what" is determined by the context of the sentence of which the "abstain from" phrase forms a part.
"Her obstetrician said, 'Pregnant women should abstain from alcohol.'"
"His dermatologist said, 'Persons with sensitive skin should abstain from alcohol.'"
Even though both physicians have said, "abstain from alcohol," they are clearly not talking about the same thing. The former would be a reference to the consumption of alcoholic beverages, while the latter would be a reference to the topical application of alcohol. There is no reason why a man with sensitive skin could not drink a Martini. There is no reason why a pregnant woman could not use a perfume or antiseptic containing alcohol.
Again, there is no such thing as abstinence from a physical object and it is grammatically incorrect to pretend that there is. We abstain from acts done in connection with objects and those acts are determined by the context.
And can you show me please, where do you believe that I quoted or "misquoted" the Bible?
The phrase in Greek is, "άπεχεσθαι.....και αιματοϛ"
Infinitive use of the middle voice is interesting here, don't you think? In English, there are two ways that literal translations handle this:
Newer versions of the NWT render it, "To keep abstaining....from blood" (Emphasis mine) The thought of continuance of an existing command is a minority viewpoint among Bible scholars, but this rendering still falls within the parameters of acceptable translation.
Older versions (1961 and earlier) of the NWT render the phrase, "To keep yourselves free...from blood"
The RSV renders the phrase: "That you abstain...from blood"
In the middle voice, initiator of action and recipient of action are one and the same. The thought in these renderings is that the Christian is policing himself (Or herself) in response to council, admonition, etc., but not an actual command. This is the majority viewpoint among Bible scholars today and the reason why the word, "abstain" is overwhelmingly favored in English translations in the first place.
The fundamental meaning of "abstain" and its synonyms (i.e. Refrain, Forbear, etc.) is to keep or prevent yourself from doing or saying something and the authority here is internal rather than external. If you omit the prefatory words and the ellipses, you are indeed misquoting the Bible because nobody renders the phrase that simplistically.
And by the way, can you also tell me please what did I mean by "it" each time I used it in my statement that you are referring to?
If the antecedent to, "It" was not the Bible, but some other source that purports to represent the Bible (i.e. JW literature) I would say that the concatenation is clear enough that you are probably splitting hairs here.
If you were not referring to the Bible either directly or indirectly when you said, "In all objectivity, not just how the WT interprets it, it says to abstain from blood" then please elaborate. What were you referring to and why should anyone (JW or not) care?
Bumping in case Fisherman missed TD's excellent explanation.
the authority here is internal rather than external.....but not an actual command.
"......and from fornication." 1Cor 5:11, Ephesians 5:5 (command)
"abstain" to keep or prevent yourself from doing....
Blood is not a finite act though and neither are "things strangled" or sacrificed to idols. It is understood that you do not ride a dead chicken same as you do not eat boats.
Simply put, to abstain from alcohol means ( Except when a skin doctor wants to use the word abstain in a peculiar way meaning not to apply it.) that you do not consume it. To what degree? A patient should be abstaining from spirits when he drinks a small diluted amount.
We abstain from acts done in connection with objects and those acts are determined by the context.
In reference to the Bible, you need context to understand what abstain from blood means? What do you think the Bible author means? In connection with the related verse, it's ok to put a gallon of blood into your body?
It would seem that the author of the Bible would want the reader to clearly understand what is required of him when he demands compliance from the reader, but the Bible is written in a peculiar way, and at times a word or a verse or more alludes to something more than the context, and the only way to know what it means is to ask the author to elaborate.
As I understand it, the ethics around the right to informed consent are with regard to the patient consenting to medical interventions on their behalf, and having the risks and benefits of having such interventions performed on their behalf.
There is no opposite ethical position of "informed refusal". A patient can refuse due to misinformation that they've gathered themselves. They can refuse because they don't like the practitioner. They don't even need a reason to refuse.
Having said that, it would be really helpful to have some kind of resource for medical personnel to utilize when they are discussing blood transfusions with JW patients. Personally, I don't think it would be unethical to include information that raises questions regarding what JWs have been taught, without sounding like undue influence.
you admitted that "Sometimes, unbled meat could be eaten"
You take me out of context. And you misrepresent what I stated. Let me elaborate. I also said in the post prior to that one: accidental eating, and I also said provision for restoration in connection with a Jew eating a dead animal. I also referenced the allowed selling of dead animals to non-Jews. I also said to you later on in our discussion that intentional eating of dead animals by an Israelite carried the death penalty. What I meant to say in the specific posts that you are referring to is that there is a difference between eating blood and eating a dead animal that was not slaughtered and bled.That is what I was focusing on in these posts. Sometimes an unbled animal could be eaten. A Jew could sell it to a foreigner and by God allowing the Jew to sell it to the foreigner, God was also allowing the foreigner to eat it. However, at no time can any man eat blood -Jew or foreigner- I referenced Lev 17:10 in the post. That is all that I was trying to say. I also meant to say that a Jew could eat an unbled dead animal sometimes and not incur the death penalty-when it was not intentional- with the provision for restoration that we discussed, the ceremonial washing.
You like to conclude that there is no difference between eating blood and eating an unbled animal and that there is no PENALTY for intentionally violating God's law -only a ceremonial wash.
Fisherman you debunked nothing. Your assertion that you did amounts to a lie.
"......and from fornication." 1Cor 5:11, Ephesians 5:5 (command)
In the context of mending the rift between Jewish and Gentile Christians, "fornication" might possibly have been a reference to marital unions acceptable among Gentiles, but forbidden among Jews.
Don't misunderstand though. I didn't describe that viewpoint because I necessarily agree with it. My purpose in listing the two schools of thought vis-à-vis the Apostolic Decree (i.e. Binding vs. Nonbinding) was simply to show that neither side renders the phrase as simplistically as you seem to have quoted it.
In reference to the Bible, you need context to understand what abstain from blood means?
As a Jewish person, I would say that Law was the context and I think most Christians would agree. The reference to, "blood" in the Apostolic Decree was therefore a direct allusion to earlier injunctions against eating it. Most paraphrased and to a lesser degree, dynamic equivalent translations actually make that interpolation:
"Eat no food that has been offered to idols; eat no blood; eat no animal that has been strangled; and keep yourselves from immorality." (TEV)
"Abstain from food that has been offered to idols; eat no blood; eat no animal that has been strangled; and keep yourselves from immorality." (Moffat)
"Avoid what has been sacrificed to idols, tasting blood, eating the meat of what has been strangled and sexual immorality." (Phillips)
If you agree with this (And it sounds like you do) then the question becomes one of equivalency. If transfusion may legitimately be included under the umbrella of prohibitions against eating blood, then we must be able to show that it is either physically or morally equivalent to eating it. --We can't simply equivocate here.
In connection with the related verse, it's ok to put a gallon of blood into your body?
You're equivocating. Equivalency is not established by referring to two acts in generic terms.
Drinking a glass of water and drowning in a lake could both accurately be described as, "putting water into your body," but there is a world of difference between the two. The human body is not one system, but many and taking water into your respiratory system (Your lungs) is not the same thing as taking water into your digestive system. (Your stomach)
In medicine, there is a world of difference between the consumption of human tissue and the transplantation of human tissue. There were religious groups (Including Jehovah's Witnesses) that struggled with this concept fifty years ago or so, but all of them eventually realized that there were important physical and moral differences at work here:
When an organ is eaten, it is broken down and destroyed by the digestive system. When an organ is transplanted, it remains intact and resumes its function in the body of the recipient. Morally, transplantation is not an act of desecration or disrespect for human life and physically, it's not even remotely comparable to consumption.
Similarly, when blood is eaten, it is broken down and destroyed by the digestive system. When blood is transfused, it remains intact and resumes its function in the body of the recipient. It is not a use of blood as food. It is a use of blood as blood. If you're going to argue that transfusion is wrong (Because eating blood is wrong) then you have to address the physical and moral differences between the two acts.