Health Care Provider and Diversity

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Abstract

From the beginning to date, in this continuously developing world, the monotheistic faiths have brought about numerous discussions concerning health, life, and death. Religions have a great impact on the society and general way of living and therefore the health care providers are expected to be aware that they should respect the faith through the provision of better health services even in all case scenarios and without despising them. The emergence of different beliefs is brought about by different views concerning the society they live. This paper provides a comparative analysis of the Christianity and Buddhism view on health care as well as the implications of their beliefs and faith. The paper shall consider the way of life of the two religions, their differences, and common belief regarding healing such as meditation, prayer, and belief. Both religious families may possess different or common views regarding healing and therefore this paper try to discuss their perspectives.

Comparative Analysis of Health Issues

Christian Perspective

According to the Christianity, medical profession began the beginning, as highlighted in some scripture passages. Some medical practices DID NOT GET regard as acceptable services within the society such as those of the magicians, witchdoctors, and Charlatans. Others such as Luke (the author and writer of Luke and Acts) got respected for their services to men. Within the New Testament, Jesus, the son of God gets regarded as a Great Physician as he was not only concerned of the spiritual but also of the physical health. According to Jesus’ teachings, suffering is not acceptable within the society, and he was involved in eliminating all forms of distress within the society then. As from the New Testament, Jesus healed many sick individuals, the lame, deaf, blind and those with bleeding problems. One of his actions that surprised many included healing a woman with bleeding problems during Sabbath. Jesus also commissioned his disciples so that they could perform healing miracles upon every suffering person they met on the way (Avalos, 1999).

The early Christians were greatly concerned about people’s health care and still in the process, most of those who stood to support the suffering individuals with various ailments by preaching healing miracles got persecuted and charged with crimes. According to the Christian history, those early Christians were totally on issues such as abortion, abandoning infant and still, they went ahead to nurture and took care of the sick without discrimination. The early Christians cared for all humans, both Christians, and Pagans; because they considered them all as brethren and that they should develop love and kindness. Those Christians would not leave the neighbors in a suffering situation.

On the other hand, those living in Greece and Rome were subject to major ailments and sufferings because they relied upon gods and goddesses by building huge temples and honoring them. The cure rate of the health services provided by their medicine men was very low, and instead, it caused more harm than cure. The Bible brings the difference between the Christians and their counterparts in that, those who believed in God were not subject to illnesses while the others who did not be subject to punishments though health sufferings (Watters, 1992).

The Buddhism perspective

According to the Buddhist faith, they believe that ‘suffering is optional.’ This message gets passed in Buddhism schools in every location in the world. Buddha got his nirvana while at thirty-five year and from then he shared his experience for forty-five years. The religion believes in ending suffering, change karma and stop all future rebirths. The practice involves meditation and precept whereby precept practice aims at transforming speech and action while meditation transforms consciousness. Also, according to Buddhism, the practice involves technique and discipline. The technique comprises rights which yield positive results, while meditation and training precepts gain discipline. Training precepts discourage killing, taking what you are not given, and sexual misbehavior, lying and consuming intoxicants (Fraser, 2013).

In Buddhism, suffering is existent in everyone’s desires, and to end it, we should stop our desires for pleasure, existence, and non-existence by practicing Nirvana as it stops those cravings. The early Buddhists claim that everything on earth changes and is subject to modification.

Considerations

Love

The Christians believe that love and compassion are the basic elements of their spiritual growth. Love for neighbors is depicted by the Good Samaritan, who found an injured man and took him to the hospital for health services regardless of their different cultures. The Christians are expected to care for others in need since it is like helping God. Love is characterized with preferences in that it is voluntary, doing well to others and showing compassion to our enemies.

In Buddhism, love is defined as unselfish interest for other people’s welfare. People are also expected to love and to respect each other. They respect mothers more than fathers and emphasize special kindness to women in sickness (Young & Koopsen, 2011).

The Importance of Human Body

Christianity teachings state that everyone should respect his/her body as the Holy Spirit resides in them. By respecting the body, they are expected to maintain it, by all means, treating it in the case of illness to ensure that it does not get separated from the soul. Health is important as it makes the people live without stress, regrets and judgments. The Christians believe that sickness comes from the devil, for example, Satan was aware of job’s faithfulness, and he wanted to send illness upon his body as a test of his faith.

In the Buddhist view, our bodies are unique in all aspects (appearance and structure) which result in past karma. The human body physically connects us to the world through our minds. While our bodies are such important tools, we should protect it and use it for required purpose by avoiding food or drug abuse, alcohol or too much coddle or deprivation. The bodies and organs normal functioning constitute physical health, and if any of the parts fails, then the entire body’s health is under issue.

Hospital and Nursing

Hospitals in the West are believed to get founded as a result of the Christian teachings. These hospitals were the first one to provide charitable and voluntary services to all the sick and dying patients. Trey provided such services out of compassion and love. The missionaries extended Christianity faith through the development of mission hospitals in other countries, while teaching people into knowing God and getting baptized. When hospitals got introduced, there was a great need for patients to receive nursing services. These nurses include the social workers we have today. The nurses work in hospitals, military hospitals, and even at homes where they may be called to serve the aged and sick (Coward & Ratanakul, 1999).

In Buddhism, nursing and hospitals are aimed at minimizing suffering. However, nurses and doctors should be aware of drugs that they prescribe to Buddhist patients as they sometimes hate analgesics when relieving pain while preferring non-pharmacological pain control alternatives.

Questions

What are critical common components to all religions/beliefs in regards to healing, such as prayer, meditation, belief, etc.? Explain.

In Buddhist religion, prayer, or chanting is intended to pay respect to the Buddha (enlightened), Dhamma (teaching) and to Sangha (order), while still reminding people of the greatness of Buddha’s teaching and to gain his blessing and protection. Bojjhanga Paritta is one of the prayers known for promoting healing and securing people from illness. Rehearsing, visualizing, listening and reciting the chants are usually used for healing (Emet, 2015).  Prayer is also significant in Christianity in securing protection and requesting for healing miracles upon life.

Meditation goes hand in hand with the prayer for most religions such as Buddhism, Christianity and Judaism and they have been known for positive impact on health issues. The need for meditation in both faiths is to gain spiritual and mental health, while improving on physical health.

Sick people are required to meditate seriously on the supreme beings’ scriptures and messages while having strong faith in getting healed. As for Christianity, it is proclaimed that faith has power in everything and therefore if a patient has faith, he/she will get healed. Similarly, in Buddhism, the individuals should chant with strong faith so that their prayers get answered. The desires of every person are expected to be positive so as to avoid issues that may affect them.

Lastly, both faiths also emphasize on total commitment to practicing religion by performing prayers, performing scripture teachings and protecting our bodies as they are important.

What is important to patients of the faiths when cared for by health care providers whose spiritual beliefs differ from their own?

It is important for healthcare providers to treat the patients with love and compassion without discrimination. By showing love to such patients, they will learn that all people may differ in beliefs, but they are all equal. Providing good health care will enable them to heal quickly in all aspects; emotionally, physically and spiritually.

Conclusion

I believe that health care should get considered as an important part of our lives, and we should all take part in supporting the sick, caring with compassion and professionalism regardless of background or cultural differences. As from the research findings, I realize that the both religious believe have good intentions on person’s health and emphasize on loving one another and showing compassion to those in suffering. Both beliefs describe health care as a right to those who are ill and that they should be treated without hate or discrimination as we are both ones. They both emphasize on having a positive attitude towards lives and avoid evils that impact on humans such as abortions and sexual misbehavior.

References

Avalos, H. (1999). Health care and the rise of Christianity. Peabody. Retrieved fromhttps://books.google.com/books?id=Mg4RAQAAIAAJ

Coward, H. G., & Ratanakul, P. (1999). A cross-cultural dialogue on health care ethics. Waterloo, Ont: Wilfrid Laurier University Press. Retrieved fromhttps://books.google.com/books?isbn=0889203253

Emet, J. (2015). Buddha’s book of meditation: Mindfulness practices for a quieter mind, self-awareness, and healthy living. Retrieved fromhttps://books.google.com/books?isbn=0399172629

Fraser, A. (2013). The healing power of meditation: Leading experts on Buddhism, psychology, and medicine explore the health benefits of contemplative practice. Retrieved fromhttps://books.google.com/books?isbn=0834828936

Young, C., & Koopsen, C. (2011). Spirituality, health, and healing: An integrative approach. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett. Retrieved fromhttps://books.google.com/books?isbn=0763779423

Watters, W. W. (1992). Deadly doctrine: Health, illness, and Christian god-talk. Buffalo, N.Y: Prometheus Books. Retrieved fromhttps://books.google.com/books?id=VMh4AAAAMAAJ



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