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The Modern Significance of the Buddhist Concept of Death
Author(s): 
Pages: 139-144+153
Year: Issue:  5
Journal: Journal of East China Normal University(Philosophy and Social Sciences)

Keyword:  Buddhist concept of deathstandard of deathcardiac deathbrain deaththe being of death;
Abstract: The traditional standard of cardiac death has been challenged with the advancement of modern medical technology. The newly proposed standard of brain death,which mainly caters for the demand of organ transplantation,wears a color of utilitarianism and is vulnerable to condemning from humanism. The uncertainty of the medical standard of death has brought about a lot of disputes in the fields of law,ethics,politics,etc. Buddhism holds a special concept of death,regarding"the being of death",which constitutes one of the four life stages,as a clear boundary between life and death. Buddhism also uses "life,warmth,consciousness"as clinical indexes to judge death. The standard of death provided by Buddhism can effectively resolve the contemporary contradictions between the standard of death and organ transplantation.
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