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Author Topic: Fertility treatments, In Vitro Fertilization..  (Read 3241 times) Average Rating: 0
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Dpaula
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« on: October 23, 2013, 08:47:23 AM »

I've been doing some reading and, as I understand, Orthodoxy and other Christian denominations absolutely are against any methods of conception other than "the traditional" way.
I'm not sure I understand why.
Many couples suffer from infertility and would love to grow their families. I've read about some situations where ethical problems arose and there are definitely some areas of concern but isn't it a bit too extreme to condemn this practice altogether?
While we fight against abortion, why do we fight against procreation?
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« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2013, 10:17:22 AM »

I've read about some situations where ethical problems arose and there are definitely some areas of concern but isn't it a bit too extreme to condemn this practice altogether?

I think you've answered your own question here. There are big ethical problems with these practices. Should the Church approve of activities which are ethically questionable?
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« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2013, 10:30:10 AM »

It is because things like IVF go beyond the limits of human nature which was left by God that the man and the woman have children and together with children they are a family unit. So, the reasons are both physiological and spiritual. People should consider things like adoption and reducing abortion, instead of altering the idea of human nature with its real consequences. I have a post on my blog about this very issue:

http://romanianorthodoxyinenglish.blogspot.ro/2013/10/the-temptation-of-going-beyond-limits.html
« Last Edit: October 23, 2013, 10:30:46 AM by IoanC » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2013, 10:30:53 AM »

The position(s) of the Church is/are more complicated than your statement , ' Orthodoxy and other Christian denominations absolutely are against any methods of conception other than "the traditional" way'would lead one to conclude.

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

Consultation with your priest may be path for many infertile couples to consider, unfortunately however, depending upon the personality and pastoral prudence of any particular priest, I am not sure that idea is good for everyone. (In other words, I've known my share of priests with whom I would not discuss this matter with under any circumstances. On the other hand, I can think of  dozens of priests, numerous monks and nuns and probably five Bishops from three different backgrounds and jurisdictions who, even though they have differing final opinions on parts of the subject  would be wonderful counselors.)

" 'Struggling With Infertility'  6 million women between the ages of 15 and 44 are clinically infertile. Infertility presents a heartbreaking struggle for many Orthodox couples who wonder whether it is God's will for them to be childless, or whether new fertility technologies (and which ones?) are appropriate. In this edition Kevin speaks with Orthodox theologian and ethicist Fr. John Breck about infertility and what options Orthodox Christian couples have to deal with it within an Orthodox context." http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility
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« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2013, 10:43:28 AM »

Well flying also goes beyond the limits of human nature in this funny perspective of human nature.
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Dpaula
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« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2013, 10:45:46 AM »

I've read about some situations where ethical problems arose and there are definitely some areas of concern but isn't it a bit too extreme to condemn this practice altogether?

I think you've answered your own question here. There are big ethical problems with these practices. Should the Church approve of activities which are ethically questionable?

I'm not quite sure how to answer this question.
Where there is an ethical problem, it's clear. But when it is not, why stop it? If a child is meant to be, it will be. And if a child is not meant to be, no matter how much doctors try, it won't work.
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« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2013, 10:53:14 AM »

Everything is natural in the natural world.

Frankly I am more of a Material Girl myself, norm.
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« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2013, 10:59:27 AM »

Well flying also goes beyond the limits of human nature in this funny perspective of human nature.

Flying doesn't go beyond the limits of human nature in the same way, it does not play with the concepts of life itself. I mean nobody stops you, but the only reason you are doing it is perhaps because of your passion for technology and not realizing that there already children that need adoption and abortions that need to be stopped. In the process, you turn human nature and the concept of normality into a technological issue with unforeseeable results. I'd say that according to the model of our God, one does not have to do all the things one can do. Knowledge is good, but you don't have to apply it in any combination that comes to mind. (God can do all He wishes, but He does not wish to do all that He can do).
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« Reply #8 on: October 23, 2013, 11:00:35 AM »

Well flying also goes beyond the limits of human nature in this funny perspective of human nature.

Flying doesn't go beyond the limits of human nature in the same way, it does not play with the concepts of life itself. I mean nobody stops you, but the only reason you are doing it is perhaps because of your passion for technology and not realizing that there already children that need adoption and abortions that need to be stopped. In the process, you turn human nature and the concept of normality into a technological issue with unforeseeable results. I'd say that according to the model of our God, one does not have to do all the things one can do. Knowledge is good, but you don't have to apply it in any combination that comes to mind. (God can do all He wishes, but He does not wish to do all that He can do).
Was this supposed to be intentionally funny? Cause I laughed.
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« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2013, 11:01:39 AM »

Well flying also goes beyond the limits of human nature in this funny perspective of human nature.

Flying doesn't go beyond the limits of human nature in the same way, it does not play with the concepts of life itself. I mean nobody stops you, but the only reason you are doing it is perhaps because of your passion for technology and not realizing that there already children that need adoption and abortions that need to be stopped. In the process, you turn human nature and the concept of normality into a technological issue with unforeseeable results. I'd say that according to the model of our God, one does not have to do all the things one can do. Knowledge is good, but you don't have to apply it in any combination that comes to mind. (God can do all He wishes, but He does not wish to do all that He can do).
Was this supposed to be intentionally funny? Cause I laughed.

Why did you laugh?
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« Reply #10 on: October 23, 2013, 11:02:49 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #11 on: October 23, 2013, 11:05:53 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes

Haven't read that transcript, but are you sure that he didn't want to say that people with erectile dysfunction can't actually ejaculate, or can they?
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« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2013, 11:07:24 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes

Haven't read that transcript, but are you sure that he didn't want to say that people with erectile dysfunction can't actually ejaculate, or can they?

It's the speaker's business to make themselves clear.

If the flag won't fly in the first place, worrying about firing a salute is a moot point.
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« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2013, 11:08:10 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes

LoL.
I missed that. Too funny!
Quote
Then, of course, anybody who watches television today is aware of this phenomenon referred to as “ED”, Erectile Dysfunction, inability of a man to ejaculate.
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« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2013, 11:08:47 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes

Haven't read that transcript, but are you sure that he didn't want to say that people with erectile dysfunction can't actually ejaculate, or can they?

It's the speaker's business to make themselves clear.

If the flag won't fly in the first place, worrying about firing a salute is a moot point.

Well, not everybody is a scientist, but you are more "at fault" if you miss the main point he's trying to make.
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« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2013, 11:28:18 AM »

Ioan,
I see you mention adoption. Do you know what an adoption process is like? I've been reading into that as well, as it is brought up as an excuse to go against IVF.
One thing that can happen is to get a baby, bring him home, feed him, wash him, bond with him and two days later have him taken away from you because the birth mother changes her mind and wants her baby back. While, I won't judge the birth mother for wanting her baby back, the pain the adoptive parents feel is unbearable. Adoption is not for everyone, as IVF is not for everyone. Both methods have in the end the desired result (if God allows it). 

P.S. I saw you called the IVF process a monstrosity. I've seen lots of babies bringing happiness to the infertile parents. I won't call that a monstrosity.
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« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2013, 11:29:06 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes

Haven't read that transcript, but are you sure that he didn't want to say that people with erectile dysfunction can't actually ejaculate, or can they?

It's the speaker's business to make themselves clear.

If the flag won't fly in the first place, worrying about firing a salute is a moot point.

Well, not everybody is a scientist, but you are more "at fault" if you miss the main point he's trying to make.

The main point about ED is that it leads to impotence, not infertility. No need to be coy about it.
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« Reply #17 on: October 23, 2013, 11:40:59 AM »

I've read about some situations where ethical problems arose and there are definitely some areas of concern but isn't it a bit too extreme to condemn this practice altogether?

I think you've answered your own question here. There are big ethical problems with these practices. Should the Church approve of activities which are ethically questionable?

I'm not quite sure how to answer this question.
Where there is an ethical problem, it's clear. But when it is not, why stop it? If a child is meant to be, it will be. And if a child is not meant to be, no matter how much doctors try, it won't work.

In your opinion, when would there not be an ethical question? In this procedure, I mean. The whole thing seems to be an ethical quagmire from start to finish.
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« Reply #18 on: October 23, 2013, 11:45:21 AM »

I've read about some situations where ethical problems arose and there are definitely some areas of concern but isn't it a bit too extreme to condemn this practice altogether?

I think you've answered your own question here. There are big ethical problems with these practices. Should the Church approve of activities which are ethically questionable?

I'm not quite sure how to answer this question.
Where there is an ethical problem, it's clear. But when it is not, why stop it? If a child is meant to be, it will be. And if a child is not meant to be, no matter how much doctors try, it won't work.

I'm not certain this argument is valid.

Rape, incest, and premarital sex, all lead to children being conceived....and yet, these all stand against Church teachings, as well ethics, and laws.

There are many things, besides having children, that humans wish they could achieve or have in life....and yet, we are taught to be submissive to the will of God.  At some point, one must stop and realize that we will not have everything we thought we wanted or needed, and we need to come to grips with it and refocus our efforts on other things.

It's not that God is angry at us, or limiting us in some way.  In fact, by denying us this or that, He is actually encouraging us to do something else, which will lead us to greater goodness.


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« Reply #19 on: October 23, 2013, 11:47:06 AM »

Well...see below, quoted from the website podkarpatska provided in a previous post.

Quote
This couple demanded that the medical team extract only 3 ova and that only 3 ova—no more—be fertilized. I believe that all 3 were transferred and one pregnancy occurred.

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« Reply #20 on: October 23, 2013, 11:54:37 AM »

I've read about some situations where ethical problems arose and there are definitely some areas of concern but isn't it a bit too extreme to condemn this practice altogether?

I think you've answered your own question here. There are big ethical problems with these practices. Should the Church approve of activities which are ethically questionable?

I'm not quite sure how to answer this question.
Where there is an ethical problem, it's clear. But when it is not, why stop it? If a child is meant to be, it will be. And if a child is not meant to be, no matter how much doctors try, it won't work.

I'm not certain this argument is valid.

Rape, incest, and premarital sex, all lead to children being conceived....and yet, these all stand against Church teachings, as well ethics, and laws.

There are many things, besides having children, that humans wish they could achieve or have in life....and yet, we are taught to be submissive to the will of God.  At some point, one must stop and realize that we will not have everything we thought we wanted or needed, and we need to come to grips with it and refocus our efforts on other things.

It's not that God is angry at us, or limiting us in some way.  In fact, by denying us this or that, He is actually encouraging us to do something else, which will lead us to greater goodness.




I understand your point, yet...IVF is not equivalent to rape, incest and other ordeals.
A most wanted pregnancy is achieved for two married people for which otherwise pregnancy will not be possible.
I just can't wrap my mind around why is this wrong.

I'm not talking about any third parties involvements. Just husband and wife ready to start a family but unable to, for which technology and science (with the will of God) will make their dream come true.
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« Reply #21 on: October 23, 2013, 12:16:47 PM »

Ioan,
I see you mention adoption. Do you know what an adoption process is like? I've been reading into that as well, as it is brought up as an excuse to go against IVF.
One thing that can happen is to get a baby, bring him home, feed him, wash him, bond with him and two days later have him taken away from you because the birth mother changes her mind and wants her baby back. While, I won't judge the birth mother for wanting her baby back, the pain the adoptive parents feel is unbearable. Adoption is not for everyone, as IVF is not for everyone. Both methods have in the end the desired result (if God allows it). 

P.S. I saw you called the IVF process a monstrosity. I've seen lots of babies bringing happiness to the infertile parents. I won't call that a monstrosity.


I don't think all adoption processes go bad. Problem is many children desperately need a home.
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« Reply #22 on: October 23, 2013, 12:20:20 PM »

Ioan,
I see you mention adoption. Do you know what an adoption process is like? I've been reading into that as well, as it is brought up as an excuse to go against IVF.
One thing that can happen is to get a baby, bring him home, feed him, wash him, bond with him and two days later have him taken away from you because the birth mother changes her mind and wants her baby back. While, I won't judge the birth mother for wanting her baby back, the pain the adoptive parents feel is unbearable. Adoption is not for everyone, as IVF is not for everyone. Both methods have in the end the desired result (if God allows it). 

P.S. I saw you called the IVF process a monstrosity. I've seen lots of babies bringing happiness to the infertile parents. I won't call that a monstrosity.


Babies bringing happiness to parents is not a monstrosity. IVF is. Anyway, there are more important things than being a happy parent who owns a child. The Christian attitude has to do more with offering a child to God and stopping abnormalities and injustices in the world such as abortions, and children without a home.
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« Reply #23 on: October 23, 2013, 12:25:37 PM »

Are you saying wanting a child is a bad thing?
Like a sin? Or what?

I mean it's not like you want a car, or a big house...We're talking about wanting a child, that parents are willing to offer to God.

If you call IVF a monstrosity, what do you call the end result? The baby?

And please forgive me if I sound pushy. I'm really trying to understand the concept of IVF being a bad thing.
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« Reply #24 on: October 23, 2013, 12:32:29 PM »

Ioan,
I see you mention adoption. Do you know what an adoption process is like? I've been reading into that as well, as it is brought up as an excuse to go against IVF.
One thing that can happen is to get a baby, bring him home, feed him, wash him, bond with him and two days later have him taken away from you because the birth mother changes her mind and wants her baby back. While, I won't judge the birth mother for wanting her baby back, the pain the adoptive parents feel is unbearable. Adoption is not for everyone, as IVF is not for everyone. Both methods have in the end the desired result (if God allows it). 

P.S. I saw you called the IVF process a monstrosity. I've seen lots of babies bringing happiness to the infertile parents. I won't call that a monstrosity.


I don't think all adoption processes go bad. Problem is many children desperately need a home.

No, of course not. But do you know what an adoption process is like? What the family is required to do? How much do they have to pay? How much do they have to wait? How painful it is to be ready to open your house to an orphan and you can't be because social workers don't find you fit.
They need to explain to complete strangers who they are, and how they are. And why they have red carpet. And how many times they have sex? They have to open their house to many complete strangers who dig deep into their lives. Like I said adoption is not for everyone. If you choose adoption for the wrong reason ( "saving" a child is the wrong reason) you might end up in a very crazy situation.
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« Reply #25 on: October 23, 2013, 12:35:03 PM »

Are you saying wanting a child is a bad thing?
Like a sin? Or what?

I mean it's not like you want a car, or a big house...We're talking about wanting a child, that parents are willing to offer to God.

If you call IVF a monstrosity, what do you call the end result? The baby?

And please forgive me if I sound pushy. I'm really trying to understand the concept of IVF being a bad thing.

Well, if you want to bring a child into the world and cannot conceive one, you have the option to adopt one if you wish.

IVF is bad thing because it is not the natural way, not what God intended. And what God intended was not really a mechanism, but that two human persons (man and woman) procreate and establish a family. This is actually a very deep mystery of life, the way humanity functions. You cannot replace it with a mechanical process; it all becomes a dead thing, a walk towards, well, monstrosity. The result of such a monstrosity (and the word is not used passionately) would be a person with a soul (no doubt about it!), yet his entire existence will be marked by such an abnormal conception in ways that we know and don't know; we definitely don't want to go along this path. Plus, our real problems are abortions and adoptions (we can't be ok with so many babies being, well, murdered and many around the world who don't have anything to eat or a place to stay). Wanting IVF is really an exotic thing with horrendous ramifications and consequences, while not seeing that there are different solutions and crucial problems that need to be fixed instead. Just how I see things and based on that article which was written by prominent Romanian scientist/nun.
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« Reply #26 on: October 23, 2013, 12:51:00 PM »

Are you saying wanting a child is a bad thing?
Like a sin? Or what?

I mean it's not like you want a car, or a big house...We're talking about wanting a child, that parents are willing to offer to God.

If you call IVF a monstrosity, what do you call the end result? The baby?

And please forgive me if I sound pushy. I'm really trying to understand the concept of IVF being a bad thing.

Well, if you want to bring a child into the world and cannot conceive one, you have the option to adopt one if you wish.

IVF is bad thing because it is not the natural way, not what God intended. And what God intended was not really a mechanism, but that two human persons (man and woman) procreate and establish a family.

This is exactly what I don't get. IVF offers the chance for a man and a woman to procreate. You need one sperm and one egg. Period. Does it matter where the fertilization happen? I mean, the fertilized egg will be transfered  3-5 days later into the mother's uterus where it will grow how it's supposed to grow, and the fetus will come out ...well...a human being. It's not like IVF will somehow alter our DNA and the end result will be some sort of mutation, an abomination, a monster. No, sir! The baby will be a human being, directly related to the mother and the father. So what's the problem?

And for an infertile couple that wishes nothing more but to procreate, you can't talk about world's problems. Like racism, homosexuality, drugs and abortions.

There's some sort of discrepancy here, that I don't quite understand. Is a couple required to just accept they can't procreate? Like a homosexual is required to live with his sinful desire but not act on it? Am I getting closer to the answer?
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« Reply #27 on: October 23, 2013, 01:11:48 PM »

Well, not everybody is a scientist, but you are more "at fault" if you miss the main point he's trying to make.

If someone writes on science he should at least pass the level of primary school

The result of such a monstrosity (and the word is not used passionately) would be a person with a soul (no doubt about it!), yet his entire existence will be marked by such an abnormal conception in ways that we know and don't know; we definitely don't want to go along this path.

If people like you didn't exist they wouldn't be ostracized.

In your opinion, when would there not be an ethical question? In this procedure, I mean. The whole thing seems to be an ethical quagmire from start to finish.

For all:
- Not freezing zygotes.
- All created zygotes must be implanted.
- No picking best zygotes.

Orthodox can add:
- Ova and sperm come from the donors that will carry and bring the child.
- Ova and sperm come from the donors that are married to each other.

Solved.
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« Reply #28 on: October 23, 2013, 01:14:48 PM »

Well, not everybody is a scientist, but you are more "at fault" if you miss the main point he's trying to make.

If someone writes on science he should at least pass the level of primary school


You know for a fact that he hasn't passed "the level of primary school"?


The result of such a monstrosity (and the word is not used passionately) would be a person with a soul (no doubt about it!), yet his entire existence will be marked by such an abnormal conception in ways that we know and don't know; we definitely don't want to go along this path.

If people like you didn't exist they wouldn't be ostracized.


Who says he is ostracized?  THIS IS RUDE!  If people like you didn't exist......(fill in the blank).
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« Reply #29 on: October 23, 2013, 01:18:41 PM »

You know for a fact that he hasn't passed "the level of primary school"?

Hyperbole.

He certainly does not have medical knowledge broad enough to write papers on it.

Quote
Who says he is ostracized?  THIS IS RUDE!  If people like you didn't exist......(fill in the blank).

There is nothing abnormal in the lifes of people conceived with in-vitro but the fact they are being picked on by people who think in-vitro is evil.
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« Reply #30 on: October 23, 2013, 01:21:33 PM »

You know for a fact that he hasn't passed "the level of primary school"?

Hyperbole.

He certainly does not have medical knowledge broad enough to write papers on it.


....and you have this knowledge that you feel qualified to knock others down?


Quote
Who says he is ostracized?  THIS IS RUDE!  If people like you didn't exist......(fill in the blank).

There is nothing abnormal in the lifes of people conceived with in-vitro but the fact they are being picked on by people who think in-vitro is evil.

The children are not being picked on.  The process is.

OUR Church, as I assume you still belong to "world Orthodoxy" (as you call it), teaches against this process.

Are you now more knowledgeable than the Church elders?  Are you going against the teachings of the Church?
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« Reply #31 on: October 23, 2013, 01:26:06 PM »


Dpaula, I wish you no harm, and my comments are not aimed specifically at you.  I realize this is painful for you, as it seems you are in the middle of something like this.

I don't wish to hurt you, ever.

However, I will also not waiver in what the Church teaches in order to make someone feel better, or under Michal's ridicule.

This is a decision YOU must make.  YOU must weigh the pros and cons.  YOU need to speak with your pastor about this.  YOU have a unique situation that only he can advise you on.  There is economia, and perhaps that will come in to play here.

However, we cannot preach that the Church allows this for everyone in every situation, for it does not.

There's a point when we need to realize that we can't always have it "our" way, and we must be happy with what we have, and move on.

I wish you all the best in this painful and crucial time in your life.  I hope whatever comes of it, that you find peace and the happiness you are seeking.

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« Reply #32 on: October 23, 2013, 01:34:41 PM »


Dpaula, I wish you no harm, and my comments are not aimed specifically at you.  I realize this is painful for you, as it seems you are in the middle of something like this.

I don't wish to hurt you, ever.

However, I will also not waiver in what the Church teaches in order to make someone feel better, or under Michal's ridicule.

This is a decision YOU must make.  YOU must weigh the pros and cons.  YOU need to speak with your pastor about this.  YOU have a unique situation that only he can advise you on.  There is economia, and perhaps that will come in to play here.

However, we cannot preach that the Church allows this for everyone in every situation, for it does not.

There's a point when we need to realize that we can't always have it "our" way, and we must be happy with what we have, and move on.

I wish you all the best in this painful and crucial time in your life.  I hope whatever comes of it, that you find peace and the happiness you are seeking.



Oh, Liza...no harm. Don't worry.
I'm not exactly in this situation, but I've been reading about it a lot, since we are in the beginning of our marriage and ready to conceive.
We wish to live the Orthodox life, we wish to raise our children in the Church, so we had a lot of conversations about all this. How far will we go and for how long?

I'm just trying to understand why the Church sees the IVF as a mistake. Is it a sin to procreate this way? What sin would that be?
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« Reply #33 on: October 23, 2013, 01:42:33 PM »

For all:
- Not freezing zygotes.
- All created zygotes must be implanted.
- No picking best zygotes.

Orthodox can add:
- Ova and sperm come from the donors that will carry and bring the child.
- Ova and sperm come from the donors that are married to each other.

Solved.

Good answer. Except, from what I admit is a bit of hasty research, this is not what happens. SOP is freezing and not all or even most are implanted. If by "best" you mean "most viable," then that's another strike. The most viable are implanted - the rest are frozen.
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« Reply #34 on: October 23, 2013, 01:43:01 PM »

....and you have this knowledge that you feel qualified to knock others down?

As Arachne pointed out that Fr. Breck whoever he is is ignorant on medicine. So, yes.

Quote
The children are not being picked on.  The process is.

"Frankenstein is the precursor of in-vitro" Bishop Tadeusz Pieronek
"Children conceived via in-vitro have distinc burrows on their foreheads that allow them to be identified at sight" Fr. Franciszek Longchamps de Berier

Quote
OUR Church, as I assume you still belong to "world Orthodoxy" (as you call it), teaches against this process.

Are you now more knowledgeable than the Church elders?  Are you going against the teachings of the Church?


Am I going against scientific opinion I consider to be mistaken by a bishop a dozen of thousands km from me? Yes.

Good answer. Except, from what I admit is a bit of hasty research, this is not what happens. SOP is freezing and not all or even most are implanted. If by "best" you mean "most viable," then that's another strike. The most viable are implanted - the rest are frozen.

I listed the conditions that would make in-vitro acceptable for me, not the ones it goes with.
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« Reply #35 on: October 23, 2013, 01:54:21 PM »

http://www.goarch.org/ourfaith/controversialissues

Quote
•Artificial insemination by a husband (AIH) is not rejected, but artificial insemination by donor (AID) is considered an improper intrusion of a third party in the sanctity of the marital relation.
•In vitro fertilization is looked upon with great doubt because present methods cause the destruction of numerous human fertilized ova and even developing fetuses; this is still a form of abortion.
•Genetic counseling and screening cannot be objected to in principle and in fact should be encouraged.

Here are a few points discussed on GOARCH's website that may be of interest.
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« Reply #36 on: October 23, 2013, 02:00:24 PM »

http://www.goarch.org/ourfaith/controversialissues

Quote
•Artificial insemination by a husband (AIH) is not rejected, but artificial insemination by donor (AID) is considered an improper intrusion of a third party in the sanctity of the marital relation.
•In vitro fertilization is looked upon with great doubt because present methods cause the destruction of numerous human fertilized ova and even developing fetuses; this is still a form of abortion.
•Genetic counseling and screening cannot be objected to in principle and in fact should be encouraged.

Here are a few points discussed on GOARCH's website that may be of interest.

What I wrote.
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« Reply #37 on: October 23, 2013, 02:03:42 PM »


Am I going against scientific opinion I consider to be mistaken by a bishop a dozen of thousands km from me? Yes.


What about the opinion of the Greek Church - http://www.goarch.org/ourfaith/controversialissues    In vitro fertilization is looked upon with great doubt because present methods cause the destruction of numerous human fertilized ova and even developing fetuses; this is still a form of abortion.

The Bulgarian Church:  http://www.novinite.com/view_news.php?id=135277   The Holy Synod of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church has declared “reservations” against in vitro fertilization and surrogacy, viewing them as a “human interference that is counter to God’s will in the existential foundations of life.” - See more at: http://www.novinite.com/view_news.php?id=135277#sthash.aZ3AuLzK.dpuf

The Russian Church:  http://english.pravda.ru/history/08-10-2010/115278-test_tube_baby-0/    Because the effectiveness of IVF is small, in four out of five cases, it has to be repeated. In order to avoid the risks associated with hormonal stimulation, it is often recommended to immediately create spare embryos and freeze them in the event of failure of the first implantation. But if the implantation goes well, these embryos are destined for destruction, which is unacceptable.

OCA:  http://oca.org/resource-handbook/familylife/medical-bioethics-an-orthodox-christian-perspective-for-orthodox-christians  There are, however, other aspects of the in-vitro fertilization process, which may or do run counter to our church’s teaching.

First of all, it divorces procreation from the conjugal act and should not be considered to be a normative practice. Yet, in-vitro fertilization could become standard practice due to certain selective benefits mentioned below.  Second, the process of choosing the most viable embryos, however well-intentioned, might be viewed as a type of eugenics, or selective breeding.   Third, the unused excess embryos are cryogenically frozen and stored for future use. However, over time these embryos may be in jeopardy of destruction.   Fourth, embryos stored in birth control clinics have become a source material for stem cell research.

...etc...
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« Reply #38 on: October 23, 2013, 02:09:31 PM »

What about the opinion of the Greek Church - http://www.goarch.org/ourfaith/controversialissues    In vitro fertilization is looked upon with great doubt because present methods cause the destruction of numerous human fertilized ova and even developing fetuses; this is still a form of abortion.

(...)

Second, the process of choosing the most viable embryos, however well-intentioned, might be viewed as a type of eugenics, or selective breeding.   Third, the unused excess embryos are cryogenically frozen and stored for future use. However, over time these embryos may be in jeopardy of destruction.   Fourth, embryos stored in birth control clinics have become a source material for stem cell research.

You could read what I had written prior to bashing me.

I agree with these two points 100%.
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« Reply #39 on: October 23, 2013, 02:18:21 PM »

I'm not bashing you.

I simply don't approve of the way you refer to other posters.

Additionally,

For all:
- Not freezing zygotes.
- All created zygotes must be implanted.
- No picking best zygotes.
Orthodox can add:
- Ova and sperm come from the donors that will carry and bring the child.
- Ova and sperm come from the donors that are married to each other.
Solved.

...I don't feel all of the above can be regulated enough to count them as absolutes.

Once those eggs/sperm have been extracted and are in the lab....is mom and dad hovering over them to ensure what happens to them?

How many times have we read at misuses and abuses?

Would you wish your sons and daughters experimented on?  You cannot possibly guarantee that this would not happen.
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« Reply #40 on: October 23, 2013, 02:22:01 PM »

How many times have we read at misuses and abuses?

Would you wish your sons and daughters experimented on?  You cannot possibly guarantee that this would not happen.

What kind of abuses can be done to one zygote that would not stop it from being implemented?
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« Reply #41 on: October 23, 2013, 02:24:02 PM »


So, you are under the impression (because you have a vast knowledge of science) that only one egg will be extracted from the mom and only that one egg will be fertilized and thereby implanted, to take hold and grow?

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« Reply #42 on: October 23, 2013, 02:26:13 PM »


So, you are under the impression (because you have a vast knowledge of science) that only one egg will be extracted from the mom and only that one egg will be fertilized and thereby implanted, to take hold and grow?

If the couple made that restriction? Yes. Or, as it seems to be commonly practiced, 2 or 3 zygotes being implemented at once.
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« Reply #43 on: October 23, 2013, 02:31:51 PM »

I'm sure at least some of what I have to say will sound insensitive.  It's not my intention.  I've had this sort of conversation when invited to talk to people in troublesome situations like this, and it's really not possible to spell out the Church's thinking without having to deal with a "hard saying" that is difficult for the hearers to understand or accept and for the tellers to communicate.  

When we read Scripture, children are spoken of as a blessing.  When couples today have children, they speak of those children as blessings.  But the two are rarely the same.  

In the past, children were a blessing from God, and people who could not have children may have suffered pain because of the deprivation of this blessing, perhaps they felt shame or inferiority because of it, or were made to feel so by others, but they had no choice but to come to accept it, and/or adopt, participate in the rearing of relatives' children, etc.  

Now we have better means of family planning, we have reproductive technologies, etc., and we also have a more materialistic view of life.  According to this view, children are

an asset
a commodity
a project
a tax break
an attention-grabber
a "life experience"
a status booster, etc.  

Having children is considered to be the real transition into adulthood by people who have children.  If I can't have children, the "blessings" that are I'm missing out on are these subjective blessings for me, for my life, and for my standing in my family, my community, and my society at large.  It's not (or at best it is equally) about not having the objective blessing of children.      

Personally, I think that it is unfair for homosexually oriented people to be told by the Church that their only option according to the gospel is to opt for celibate chastity or enter into a heterosexual marriage, and yet what other option is there according to the gospel, even if it brings them a lot of grief and involves a lot of sacrifice, re-ordering of their lives, overcoming of desires, etc.?  I also feel it is unfair to tell infertile couples that it is wrong to use the new reproductive technologies, but that they should instead adopt or accept that it may not be God's will for them to have the children they desire for whatever reason.  But according to the principles of the gospel, I have a difficult time advising anything else.  

Precisely because of the esteem with which the Orthodox tradition regards marriage, sexuality, and children, I feel that these technologies, by taking the active procreative role of husband and wife and transforming it into a passive, goal-oriented laboratory procedure, are an abuse--they fundamentally conflict with our beliefs about these things.  The love of a man and a woman which causes them to join themselves to each other in physical union with the hope/intention of having a child (itself a sacramental, grace-bearing, grace-conferring experience) is now envisioned as a more "animal" phenomenon, separated into its constituent biological parts, and manipulated by medical practitioners.  Their mandate is to ensure that a child is conceived, and so they follow their procedures in a controlled environment.  They may respect your religious views, but they're not required to respect them more than their patients.  Moreover, these technologies involve other real issues of significant moral, ethical, and theological import: how many ova are fertilised vs how many are implanted, what is done with the "leftovers" (themselves human beings created in the image and likeness of God, albeit created in an atypical manner), and so on.      

The statement that someone posted above...

Quote
IVF offers the chance for a man and a woman to procreate. You need one sperm and one egg. Period. Does it matter where the fertilization happen? I mean, the fertilized egg will be transfered  3-5 days later into the mother's uterus where it will grow how it's supposed to grow, and the fetus will come out ...well...a human being. It's not like IVF will somehow alter our DNA and the end result will be some sort of mutation, an abomination, a monster. No, sir! The baby will be a human being, directly related to the mother and the father. So what's the problem?

...already betrays an acceptance of a non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children.  Here, a child is not a blessing, it is a commodity, and IVF is a project undertaken to obtain that good.  As long as the supplies come from the spouses and the genetic material is not altered, and the end result is manifestly human, "what's the problem?"  Well, I suppose one is free to look at it that way, but I don't think we can say this is how the Church views it.  Our current theology may need to consider these technologies and adequately address their validity from our particular faith perspective (as opposed to just signing on to RC declarations or leaving it exclusively to a couple to decide as they see fit), but based on what we can say here and now, I think the attempts to justify IVF and related technologies leave much to be desired.    
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« Reply #44 on: October 23, 2013, 02:36:11 PM »



Example of "non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children".
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« Reply #45 on: October 23, 2013, 02:40:30 PM »


Yes, but, this is God acting, not some man in white lab coat.

You cannot possibly be comparing the incarnation of Christ, to invitro fertilization.

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« Reply #46 on: October 23, 2013, 02:42:36 PM »

You cannot possibly be comparing the incarnation of Christ, to invitro fertilization.

Both divide conception and sexual act what seems to be a problem.
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« Reply #47 on: October 23, 2013, 02:47:14 PM »

I don't even know what to say to this.

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« Reply #48 on: October 23, 2013, 02:47:30 PM »



Now we have better means of family planning, we have reproductive technologies, etc., and we also have a more materialistic view of life.  According to this view, children are

an asset
a commodity
a project
a tax break
an attention-grabber
a "life experience"
a status booster, etc.  



The statement that someone posted above...

Quote
IVF offers the chance for a man and a woman to procreate. You need one sperm and one egg. Period. Does it matter where the fertilization happen? I mean, the fertilized egg will be transfered  3-5 days later into the mother's uterus where it will grow how it's supposed to grow, and the fetus will come out ...well...a human being. It's not like IVF will somehow alter our DNA and the end result will be some sort of mutation, an abomination, a monster. No, sir! The baby will be a human being, directly related to the mother and the father. So what's the problem?

...already betrays an acceptance of a non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children.  Here, a child is not a blessing, it is a commodity, and IVF is a project undertaken to obtain that good.  As long as the supplies come from the spouses and the genetic material is not altered, and the end result is manifestly human, "what's the problem?"  Well, I suppose one is free to look at it that way, but I don't think we can say this is how the Church views it.  Our current theology may need to consider these technologies and adequately address their validity from our particular faith perspective (as opposed to just signing on to RC declarations or leaving it exclusively to a couple to decide as they see fit), but based on what we can say here and now, I think the attempts to justify IVF and related technologies leave much to be desired.    

Ohh...but how do you know what the families who decide to go the IVF route, really feel? You can't possibly generalize like this. In fact, a vast majority are praying to God without ceasing to be blessed with the gift of Life.

And that is my quote...and I don't know where you got the idea that a child is a commodity.
For me, there's nothing more miraculous in this world, than life..how it begins, how it unfolds, how it ends. I can only look at it as a blessing and nothing else.

If I may ask again. Is it a sin to do IVF? And what sin is this exactly?
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« Reply #49 on: October 23, 2013, 02:48:10 PM »

You cannot possibly be comparing the incarnation of Christ, to invitro fertilization.

Both divide conception and sexual act what seems to be a problem.

Christ is true God and true Man.
His Father is God the Father.
His Mother is the Theotokos.

Or are you questioning the Gospel accounts and the mystery of the Holy Incarnation?
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« Reply #50 on: October 23, 2013, 02:48:17 PM »



Example of "non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children" your willful ignorance.
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« Reply #51 on: October 23, 2013, 02:49:12 PM »

The major "sin" is in the fact that you cannot control what happens to the egg/sperm/zygotes.

No matter what Michal says....the labs are not fool proof.  The lab technicians are not all honest.

Some of the "material" will be discarded.  Others will be used for scientific purposes.

Yours may not.  Not all is.  However, you cannot guarantee, without a doubt, that your offspring will not be experimented on or killed in the process.
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« Reply #52 on: October 23, 2013, 02:51:38 PM »

The major "sin" is in the fact that you cannot control what happens to the egg/sperm/zygotes.

No matter what Michal says....the labs are not fool proof.  The lab technicians are not all honest.

Some of the "material" will be discarded.  Others will be used for scientific purposes.

Yours may not.  Not all is.  However, you cannot guarantee, without a doubt, that your offspring will not be experimented on or killed in the process.

Civil law contract?
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« Reply #53 on: October 23, 2013, 02:52:46 PM »


OK...that doesn't stop it from happening.

Good luck catching them at it, and proving it.

Sure, you'll take them to court, and they may be jailed.

However, your children were already victimized.  You cannot undo that.

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« Reply #54 on: October 23, 2013, 02:53:28 PM »



Now we have better means of family planning, we have reproductive technologies, etc., and we also have a more materialistic view of life.  According to this view, children are

an asset
a commodity
a project
a tax break
an attention-grabber
a "life experience"
a status booster, etc.  



The statement that someone posted above...

Quote
IVF offers the chance for a man and a woman to procreate. You need one sperm and one egg. Period. Does it matter where the fertilization happen? I mean, the fertilized egg will be transfered  3-5 days later into the mother's uterus where it will grow how it's supposed to grow, and the fetus will come out ...well...a human being. It's not like IVF will somehow alter our DNA and the end result will be some sort of mutation, an abomination, a monster. No, sir! The baby will be a human being, directly related to the mother and the father. So what's the problem?

...already betrays an acceptance of a non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children.  Here, a child is not a blessing, it is a commodity, and IVF is a project undertaken to obtain that good.  As long as the supplies come from the spouses and the genetic material is not altered, and the end result is manifestly human, "what's the problem?"  Well, I suppose one is free to look at it that way, but I don't think we can say this is how the Church views it.  Our current theology may need to consider these technologies and adequately address their validity from our particular faith perspective (as opposed to just signing on to RC declarations or leaving it exclusively to a couple to decide as they see fit), but based on what we can say here and now, I think the attempts to justify IVF and related technologies leave much to be desired.    

Ohh...but how do you know what the families who decide to go the IVF route, really feel? You can't possibly generalize like this. In fact, a vast majority are praying to God without ceasing to be blessed with the gift of Life.

For me, there's nothing more miraculous in this world, than life..how it begins, how it unfolds, how it ends. I can only look at it as a blessing and nothing else.

If I may ask again. Is it a sin to do IVF? And what sin is this exactly?


There are some unethical doctors out there.
Recently 30 human beings were born that were genetically modified.
I will see if I can find the link, but many of those children have been found to have a weird genetic illness.
If a person accepts IVF, there is no telling if their doctors are ethical or not.

There are some miracles that women have told me. These women could not conceive, and their doctors recommended that they adopt a child. One of these women went to Greece to venerate the Holy Sash of the Virgin Theotokos. She was blessed by an elder who told her that she would conceive if she prepared herself spiritually through confession and fasting. She did this and conceived fraternal twins without medical intervention.  Then later on, she conceived another child without medical intervention.

People need to trust in God, not in doctors and technology which could harm a baby.
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« Reply #55 on: October 23, 2013, 02:55:17 PM »


OK...that doesn't stop it from happening.

Good luck catching them at it, and proving it.

Sure, you'll take them to court, and they may be jailed.

However, your children were already victimized.  You cannot undo that.



So the problem with in-vitro is clinic can break the agreement, and law, and harm your children.

But this can be a problem with anything. Priesthood, schools, whatever.
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« Reply #56 on: October 23, 2013, 02:56:24 PM »

Ohh...but how do you know what the families who decide to go the IVF route, really feel? You can't possibly generalize like this. In fact, a vast majority are praying to God without ceasing to be blessed with the gift of Life.

I don't know about "the vast majority" of couples who go the IVF route, but I do know about the couples I've helped advise regarding this matter, either by their own invitation or that of their priest.  I can't generalise about the majority, but in the cases I'm familiar with, there was more going on than just "wanting to be blessed with the gift of Life".  My suspicion is that the "vast majority" is no different, but perhaps I just got the more "selfish" cases.

Quote
For me, there's nothing more miraculous in this world, than life..how it begins, how it unfolds, how it ends. I can only look at it as a blessing and nothing else.

Oh, I agree.  But this is not about "life" in general, but about a particular manifestation of life and the desire to participate in that manifestation over others.  We need to understand the big picture in order to see how the different "parts" fit.  

Quote
If I may ask again. Is it a sin to do IVF? And what sin is this exactly?

I don't know if I can express myself more clearly than I already did, unless we're working with a different understanding of "sin".  What do you mean by "sin"?  
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« Reply #57 on: October 23, 2013, 02:57:50 PM »

The major "sin" is in the fact that you cannot control what happens to the egg/sperm/zygotes.

No matter what Michal says....the labs are not fool proof.  The lab technicians are not all honest.

Some of the "material" will be discarded.  Others will be used for scientific purposes.

Yours may not.  Not all is.  However, you cannot guarantee, without a doubt, that your offspring will not be experimented on or killed in the process.

Civil law contract?

Some doctors have violated civil law contracts. In addition, there are always ways to word a contract so that a doctor can kill and experiment upon unborn babies without informing the parents. Read the fine print prepared by doctors' attorneys.
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« Reply #58 on: October 23, 2013, 02:58:35 PM »

Oh, I agree.  But this is not about "life" in general, but about a particular manifestation of life and the desire to participate in that manifestation over others.  We need to understand the big picture in order to see how the different "parts" fit.  

There is no "others". People who decide for in-vitro have no other choice.

Some doctors have violated civil law contracts. In addition, there are always ways to word a contract so that a doctor can kill and experiment upon unborn babies without informing the parents. Read the fine print prepared by doctor's attorneys.

Priests can rape children. Delegalize priesthood!
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« Reply #59 on: October 23, 2013, 02:58:46 PM »


OK...that doesn't stop it from happening.

Good luck catching them at it, and proving it.

Sure, you'll take them to court, and they may be jailed.

However, your children were already victimized.  You cannot undo that.



So the problem with in-vitro is clinic can break the agreement, and law, and harm your children.

But this can be a problem with anything. Priesthood, schools, whatever.

No, there's a huge difference.

A priest, a teacher, etc. can molest your kids.  However, they will not be playing with their chromosomal integrity, adding genes, seeing if they can get them to grow an additional liver, arm, head, etc.  Nor will they possibly be implanting them in to strangers, or mixing the eggs with their own sperm and making their own kids.

Yes, crime happens outside the womb....but, it is of a different caliber.
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« Reply #60 on: October 23, 2013, 02:59:38 PM »

but, it is of a different caliber.

Can't say I agree.
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« Reply #61 on: October 23, 2013, 03:00:21 PM »

Oh, I agree.  But this is not about "life" in general, but about a particular manifestation of life and the desire to participate in that manifestation over others.  We need to understand the big picture in order to see how the different "parts" fit.  

There is no "others". People who decide for in-vitro have no other choice.

Some doctors have violated civil law contracts. In addition, there are always ways to word a contract so that a doctor can kill and experiment upon unborn babies without informing the parents. Read the fine print prepared by doctor's attorneys.

Priests can rape children. Delegalize priesthood!

Non sequitur.
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« Reply #62 on: October 23, 2013, 03:01:26 PM »


There is no "others". People who decide for in-vitro have no other choice.


Wrong!  

They have the choice to be satisfied with what they DO have in life.  Children are not a necessity.  If God hasn't allowed them to conceive, so be it.

They could also adopt.  How many needy kids are out there, just waiting to be loved, and we throw them to the curb because we want Johnny to have my red hair and her blue eyes.  Seriously?

They could also spend the time and money that they are not using in raising their own child, to assist orphans, and there are many orphans in the world, in need of assistance.

They could even become foster parents.

Having children does not complete a person.  There is life for childless couples.

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« Reply #63 on: October 23, 2013, 03:01:47 PM »

but, it is of a different caliber.

Can't say I agree.

Doesn't surprise me.
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« Reply #64 on: October 23, 2013, 03:03:49 PM »



No, there's a huge difference.

A priest, a teacher, etc. can molest your kids.  However, they will not be playing with their chromosomal integrity, adding genes, seeing if they can get them to grow an additional liver, arm, head, etc.  Nor will they possibly be implanting them in to strangers, or mixing the eggs with their own sperm and making their own kids.

Yes, crime happens outside the womb....but, it is of a different caliber.


Oh, Lord have mercy!
I haven't read any of this on the IVF forums I've been lurking on.
In fact, I only see hopeful women, happy couples and beautiful babies.
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« Reply #65 on: October 23, 2013, 03:04:46 PM »

Is this an attempt to create a thread that's even worse than the one about breastfeeding? If so, this is going to be a great succes.
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« Reply #66 on: October 23, 2013, 03:06:09 PM »


Thank you.  I am doing my best to make it so.  Wink

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« Reply #67 on: October 23, 2013, 03:06:18 PM »

Is this an attempt to create a thread that's even worse than the one about breastfeeding?
No.
This is serious. And very important to me.
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« Reply #68 on: October 23, 2013, 03:06:54 PM »

Oh, I agree.  But this is not about "life" in general, but about a particular manifestation of life and the desire to participate in that manifestation over others.  We need to understand the big picture in order to see how the different "parts" fit.  

There is no "others". People who decide for in-vitro have no other choice.

Sure.
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« Reply #69 on: October 23, 2013, 03:18:37 PM »


They have the choice to be satisfied with what they DO have in life.  Children are not a necessity.  If God hasn't allowed them to conceive, so be it.
True. But they will always feel that void that comes with it. Nobody to follow after me actually hurts me deeply.

Quote
They could also adopt.  
This is not as easy as it sounds. I've wrote about how difficult adoption really is.

Quote
How many needy kids are out there, just waiting to be loved, and we throw them to the curb because we want Johnny to have my red hair and her blue eyes.  Seriously?
People that do this will not make an infertile couple feel better about their incapacity to have babies. It actually hurts even more to not understand why them can't procreate, but others that can will throw away their children. Infertile couples will be glad to welcome in their families any "type" of child God will bless them with.

Quote
They could also spend the time and money that they are not using in raising their own child, to assist orphans, and there are many orphans in the world, in need of assistance.
No amount of donations and help will fill the void and reality that a child will never be part of their family.

Quote
They could even become foster parents.
No easy solution either. Foster children come and go. The separation is described by some as "worse than death", as at the death of a loved one you know where they "went", but as a foster parent you might never hear news about that child ever again.

Quote
Having children does not complete a person.  There is life for childless couples.
I can't agree. Multiple reasons.


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« Reply #70 on: October 23, 2013, 03:22:25 PM »

They could also adopt.  How many needy kids are out there, just waiting to be loved, and we throw them to the curb because we want Johnny to have my red hair and her blue eyes.  Seriously?

I know of several couples who adopted and are happy. I've also heard of some that adopted and ended up with having sex with each other and engaging in crimes due to them being conceived with incest. And there are loads that were refused adoption due to bureaucracy.

Sure.

Right. People refuse to have children the easiest way and spend thousands of dollars because they do not like sex.
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« Reply #71 on: October 23, 2013, 03:22:46 PM »

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/11/13/dr-ben-ramaley-fertility_n_357611.html
Dr. Ben Ramaley: Fertility Doctor Accused Of Using Own Sperm To Artificially Inseminate Woman
The prominent doctor was supposed to artificially inseminate an unidentified woman with her husband's sperm after they first consulted him in 2002. After several attempts, the woman became pregnant and gave birth to twins.  According to court records, the parents were surprised at the "fair complexion" of the children as the woman's husband is African-American  

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/9193014/British-man-fathered-600-children-at-own-fertility-clinic.html
British man 'fathered 600 children' at own fertility clinic

http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/embryonic-cloning-experiment-blasted-by-ethicists-scientists/
Embryonic cloning experiment blasted by ethicists, scientists
Denver, Colo., Oct 8, 2011 / 06:50 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A recent experiment cloning human embryos for potential stem cell use did little to advance a medical breakthrough and violated human life, Catholic experts said in reaction to the news.

There are many other such stories.

However, let us take a look at the other side of this process.  The parents.

Here's a great article.  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2309037/I-wish-IVF-invented-Samantha-Brick-says-given-heartache-.html

So when I read that the test-tube baby pioneer, Sir Robert Edwards, had died, I experienced an overwhelming range of emotions. I felt sadness for his family but, to my discomfort and shame, I also felt a jolt of anger towards a man whose work has allowed the medical profession to play God with human life.  Irrational as it might sound to those who have never been through the heartbreak of unsuccessful fertility treatment, I see this eminent professor as unwittingly responsible for the agony I have endured since discovering, four years ago, that my husband and I are unable to conceive a child together naturally.

If IVF didn’t exist, I believe we would have, eventually, got on with our lives.  - THIS!

Instead, we submitted ourselves to the rollercoaster of fertility treatment.
And our world has been on hold, in a terrible emotional limbo, ever since.




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« Reply #72 on: October 23, 2013, 03:27:39 PM »


They have the choice to be satisfied with what they DO have in life.  Children are not a necessity.  If God hasn't allowed them to conceive, so be it.
True. But they will always feel that void that comes with it. Nobody to follow after me actually hurts me deeply.


This is a problem YOU have to deal with.

So, when I was a kid, I wanted to marry Mr. Right, live in a house with a white picket fence, have 2 kids, and live the dream.

As I got older, I figured, one child would suffice.

Well, I got none of that...not even the picket fence.  Should I just call it quits?  Give up on life?  Pout and be unhappy until I die?

That's a choice the person must make.

I choose not to be unhappy, but, to take it as an opportunity to do other things with my life.  I am not held back by husband/children and am in a place in my life where I find I can contribute my talents and skills in other ways.

Life goes on.  We cannot be so attached to a dream that we stop living if that dream isn't achieved.  

This goes specifically against the Second Commandment of God - to not make idols for ourselves.  These desires, are idols, as they take over our lives, thoughts and very beings.  They pull us from God and His teachings, leading us to make our own laws, justify our own actions, in order to bow to the idols of our own making.

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« Reply #73 on: October 23, 2013, 03:37:23 PM »

Why can't infertile couples just accept their lot in life? There are some people--myself included--who would love to be infertile and/or marry an infertile women. I don't like children nor do I care for taking care of them. The fact that every breathing woman has to have children is perhaps my greatest problem with marriage. I already wasted my childhood taking care of my younger siblings, I don't want to waste another 18 years taking care of more children. I'm sick of science always giving the women more ways to screw over their husbands into having to raise children.
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« Reply #74 on: October 23, 2013, 03:51:52 PM »

I haven't read any of this on the IVF forums I've been lurking on.
In fact, I only see hopeful women, happy couples and beautiful babies.


I don't know anything about abuses - other than the ones I mentioned. But think about it - on an IVF Forum, aren't you likely to see only "hopeful women, happy couples and beautiful babies"?
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« Reply #75 on: October 23, 2013, 04:04:21 PM »

Sure.

Right. People refuse to have children the easiest way and spend thousands of dollars because they do not like sex.

Do you like refuting the straw men in your head?  Because this has nothing to do with anything I've written.  I responded to your comment with "Sure" because I sensed it was futile even to try explaining it further to you. 
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« Reply #76 on: October 23, 2013, 04:07:18 PM »

Where's Kerdy?

 Wink
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« Reply #77 on: October 23, 2013, 04:20:05 PM »

Why can't infertile couples just accept their lot in life? There are some people--myself included--who would love to be infertile and/or marry an infertile women. I don't like children nor do I care for taking care of them. The fact that every breathing woman has to have children is perhaps my greatest problem with marriage. I already wasted my childhood taking care of my younger siblings, I don't want to waste another 18 years taking care of more children. I'm sick of science always giving the women more ways to screw over their husbands into having to raise children.

Sigh.  Sometimes my friend, you do get what you want and it isn't what you thought it would be.
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« Reply #78 on: October 23, 2013, 04:42:59 PM »

I haven't read any of this on the IVF forums I've been lurking on.
In fact, I only see hopeful women, happy couples and beautiful babies.


I don't know anything about abuses - other than the ones I mentioned. But think about it - on an IVF Forum, aren't you likely to see only "hopeful women, happy couples and beautiful babies"?

Aren't these types of forums highly moderated so that you would only see happy couples and beautiful babies?
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« Reply #79 on: October 23, 2013, 04:45:53 PM »

Why can't infertile couples just accept their lot in life? There are some people--myself included--who would love to be infertile and/or marry an infertile women. I don't like children nor do I care for taking care of them. The fact that every breathing woman has to have children is perhaps my greatest problem with marriage. I already wasted my childhood taking care of my younger siblings, I don't want to waste another 18 years taking care of more children. I'm sick of science always giving the women more ways to screw over their husbands into having to raise children.
Some will argue women won't be necessary soon.
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« Reply #80 on: October 23, 2013, 04:49:21 PM »

Some will argue women won't be necessary soon.

What? You can't order pizzas in the States yet?

Just kidding

 Smiley
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« Reply #81 on: October 23, 2013, 04:52:27 PM »

Aren't these types of forums highly moderated so that you would only see happy couples and beautiful babies?

Maybe, on those fora, unhappy couples and babies with challenges = rudeness?  Wink
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« Reply #82 on: October 23, 2013, 05:08:25 PM »

I haven't read any of this on the IVF forums I've been lurking on.
In fact, I only see hopeful women, happy couples and beautiful babies.


I don't know anything about abuses - other than the ones I mentioned. But think about it - on an IVF Forum, aren't you likely to see only "hopeful women, happy couples and beautiful babies"?

Aren't these types of forums highly moderated so that you would only see happy couples and beautiful babies?

Not at all.
You can read all about their day to day struggles also. There are posts about bad clinics, poor customer service. Posts about people ready to start IVF and on their first visit with the first blood test find out they are in fact expecting a baby conceived naturally. Some families have one IVF and stop due to it being so expensive. Some families go through multiple failed IVFs and eventually give up. So it's not only happy ending stories.

Just like adoption forums. Some are wonderful success stories, and some are just plain horror stories!
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« Reply #83 on: October 23, 2013, 05:09:15 PM »

Aren't these types of forums highly moderated so that you would only see happy couples and beautiful babies?

Maybe, on those fora, unhappy couples and babies with challenges = rudeness?  Wink

Certainly. And there was a thread on one of those IVF forums where a couple was upset that they lost all their babies when doctors did selective abortions to "reduce". It backfired. Since so many people were upset, the mods moved that thread into their mod forum. Problem solved, but the truth was compromised.

Then there was the horrific story where a doctor did a selective abortion, but killed the wrong baby. The baby that lived was seriously handicapped. That thread was likewise consigned to the Trash Bin.

Those IVF forums are notorious for their strict moderation to support "selective reduction" aka abortion.
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« Reply #84 on: October 23, 2013, 05:28:48 PM »

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« Reply #85 on: October 23, 2013, 05:31:02 PM »



Do not remind me! (Shades of the former Panteleimon of HTM.)

That gives me the creeps.
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« Reply #86 on: October 23, 2013, 05:42:10 PM »


They have the choice to be satisfied with what they DO have in life.  Children are not a necessity.  If God hasn't allowed them to conceive, so be it.
True. But they will always feel that void that comes with it. Nobody to follow after me actually hurts me deeply.


This is a problem YOU have to deal with.

So, when I was a kid, I wanted to marry Mr. Right, live in a house with a white picket fence, have 2 kids, and live the dream.

As I got older, I figured, one child would suffice.

Well, I got none of that...not even the picket fence.  Should I just call it quits?  Give up on life?  Pout and be unhappy until I die?

That's a choice the person must make.

I choose not to be unhappy, but, to take it as an opportunity to do other things with my life.  I am not held back by husband/children and am in a place in my life where I find I can contribute my talents and skills in other ways.

Life goes on.  We cannot be so attached to a dream that we stop living if that dream isn't achieved.  

This goes specifically against the Second Commandment of God - to not make idols for ourselves.  These desires, are idols, as they take over our lives, thoughts and very beings.  They pull us from God and His teachings, leading us to make our own laws, justify our own actions, in order to bow to the idols of our own making.



Hmmm...I don't know how to answer this, but I'll attempt.

I, as a newly wed, choose to go ahead and "multiply" . Smiley I did choose to marry, and with that comes other desires as well...like the one to have a child.
Upon multiple failed attempts (it's not about me, I haven't even been married one month yet, so this is just theoretically speaking) , am I to give up and find something better to do with my married life?
I'm sure some people (like James over here) will gladly say "yes, move on with your life and find something better to do". But some people actually DO want children. And they do not want them because they want to somehow fulfill their selfishness, but they actually genuinely want children. You can't compare this desire to anything else in the world. Like I said, it's not like you want a better car, or a bigger house. It's not like you want to harm somebody, or take away something that belongs to someone else. It's not an idol that you want to worship. You're not cheating on your husband. You're not being disrespectful to your parents. It has nothing to do with your neighbor. You just want a child. Sure. It comes a moment in your life when you might want to refocus that energy, and you might need to find another mission, but don't you want to try everything humanly possible to have a child? I would.

I'm not going against the teaching of the Church. I trust the Church. I was just trying to understand the reasoning behind the IVF being frowned upon. (besides horror stories that come with anything in life frankly)
Not quite sure the Fathers knew about IVF back then, so I can't go and read what they said about it.


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« Reply #87 on: October 23, 2013, 05:50:01 PM »


They have the choice to be satisfied with what they DO have in life.  Children are not a necessity.  If God hasn't allowed them to conceive, so be it.
True. But they will always feel that void that comes with it. Nobody to follow after me actually hurts me deeply.


This is a problem YOU have to deal with.

So, when I was a kid, I wanted to marry Mr. Right, live in a house with a white picket fence, have 2 kids, and live the dream.

As I got older, I figured, one child would suffice.

Well, I got none of that...not even the picket fence.  Should I just call it quits?  Give up on life?  Pout and be unhappy until I die?

That's a choice the person must make.

I choose not to be unhappy, but, to take it as an opportunity to do other things with my life.  I am not held back by husband/children and am in a place in my life where I find I can contribute my talents and skills in other ways.

Life goes on.  We cannot be so attached to a dream that we stop living if that dream isn't achieved.  

This goes specifically against the Second Commandment of God - to not make idols for ourselves.  These desires, are idols, as they take over our lives, thoughts and very beings.  They pull us from God and His teachings, leading us to make our own laws, justify our own actions, in order to bow to the idols of our own making.



Hmmm...I don't know how to answer this, but I'll attempt.

I, as a newly wed, choose to go ahead and "multiply" . Smiley I did choose to marry, and with that comes other desires as well...like the one to have a child.
Upon multiple failed attempts (it's not about me, I haven't even been married one month yet, so this is just theoretically speaking) , am I to give up and find something better to do with my married life?
I'm sure some people (like James over here) will gladly say "yes, move on with your life and find something better to do". But some people actually DO want children. And they do not want them because they want to somehow fulfill their selfishness, but they actually genuinely want children. You can't compare this desire to anything else in the world. Like I said, it's not like you want a better car, or a bigger house. It's not like you want to harm somebody, or take away something that belongs to someone else. It's not an idol that you want to worship. You're not cheating on your husband. You're not being disrespectful to your parents. It has nothing to do with your neighbor. You just want a child. Sure. It comes a moment in your life when you might want to refocus that energy, and you might need to find another mission, but don't you want to try everything humanly possible to have a child? I would.

I'm not going against the teaching of the Church. I trust the Church. I was just trying to understand the reasoning behind the IVF being frowned upon. (besides horror stories that come with anything in life frankly)
Not quite sure the Fathers knew about IVF back then, so I can't go and read what they said about it.


One of my relatives went to an IVF clinic and spent thousands of dollars trying to get pregnant. No success.

Then they went to a gynaecologist who performed a hormone test and told this 22 year old that she was going through menopause early, accept the fact, and adopt. Not satisfied, this young couple went to see an endocrinologist who did further tests and discovered that she has low thyroid. Upon being placed on thyroid replacement therapy, she has successfully borne two children.

Paula, please stop worrying. Instead, trust in God. Stress alone can cause infertility.
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« Reply #88 on: October 23, 2013, 06:06:57 PM »

A couple anecdotal horror stories is not a good reason to form a basis of opinion on anything. I suspect if you would look at actual data, you would probably see that most IVF works out just fine for the couple.  Regardless of whether it does or does not has no bearing on it's moral status.

I don't think she is worrying.  As she stated numerous times, she asked a question for discussion purposes.
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« Reply #89 on: October 23, 2013, 06:27:32 PM »

A couple anecdotal horror stories is not a good reason to form a basis of opinion on anything. I suspect if you would look at actual data, you would probably see that most IVF works out just fine for the couple.  Regardless of whether it does or does not has no bearing on it's moral status.

I don't think she is worrying.  As she stated numerous times, she asked a question for discussion purposes.

The whole idea of IVF is unethical. When you add "selective reduction" aka the deliberate abortion of "excess" human beings inside a woman's womb, that is murder.
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« Reply #90 on: October 23, 2013, 06:36:15 PM »

A couple anecdotal horror stories is not a good reason to form a basis of opinion on anything. I suspect if you would look at actual data, you would probably see that most IVF works out just fine for the couple.  Regardless of whether it does or does not has no bearing on it's moral status.

I don't think she is worrying.  As she stated numerous times, she asked a question for discussion purposes.

The whole idea of IVF is unethical. When you add "selective reduction" aka the deliberate abortion of "excess" human beings inside a woman's womb, that is murder.
I don't know enough to have an opinion. Are you saying that they fertilize a bunch of eggs and then discard most of them and just use a select few?  If that is the case, I would tend to agree with you.
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« Reply #91 on: October 24, 2013, 12:38:24 AM »

The whole idea of IVF is unethical. When you add "selective reduction" aka the deliberate abortion of "excess" human beings inside a woman's womb, that is murder.

Whend you do not add it how is in-vitro still unethical?
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« Reply #92 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »


They have the choice to be satisfied with what they DO have in life.  Children are not a necessity.  If God hasn't allowed them to conceive, so be it.
True. But they will always feel that void that comes with it. Nobody to follow after me actually hurts me deeply.


This is a problem YOU have to deal with.

So, when I was a kid, I wanted to marry Mr. Right, live in a house with a white picket fence, have 2 kids, and live the dream.

As I got older, I figured, one child would suffice.

Well, I got none of that...not even the picket fence.  Should I just call it quits?  Give up on life?  Pout and be unhappy until I die?

That's a choice the person must make.

I choose not to be unhappy, but, to take it as an opportunity to do other things with my life.  I am not held back by husband/children and am in a place in my life where I find I can contribute my talents and skills in other ways.

Life goes on.  We cannot be so attached to a dream that we stop living if that dream isn't achieved.  

This goes specifically against the Second Commandment of God - to not make idols for ourselves.  These desires, are idols, as they take over our lives, thoughts and very beings.  They pull us from God and His teachings, leading us to make our own laws, justify our own actions, in order to bow to the idols of our own making.



Hmmm...I don't know how to answer this, but I'll attempt.

I, as a newly wed, choose to go ahead and "multiply" . Smiley I did choose to marry, and with that comes other desires as well...like the one to have a child.
Upon multiple failed attempts (it's not about me, I haven't even been married one month yet, so this is just theoretically speaking) , am I to give up and find something better to do with my married life?
I'm sure some people (like James over here) will gladly say "yes, move on with your life and find something better to do". But some people actually DO want children. And they do not want them because they want to somehow fulfill their selfishness, but they actually genuinely want children. You can't compare this desire to anything else in the world. Like I said, it's not like you want a better car, or a bigger house. It's not like you want to harm somebody, or take away something that belongs to someone else. It's not an idol that you want to worship. You're not cheating on your husband. You're not being disrespectful to your parents. It has nothing to do with your neighbor. You just want a child. Sure. It comes a moment in your life when you might want to refocus that energy, and you might need to find another mission, but don't you want to try everything humanly possible to have a child? I would.

I'm not going against the teaching of the Church. I trust the Church. I was just trying to understand the reasoning behind the IVF being frowned upon. (besides horror stories that come with anything in life frankly)
Not quite sure the Fathers knew about IVF back then, so I can't go and read what they said about it.
Besides concubines, they knew nothing about it.

The only basis I see for opposition to IVF, besides obvious no-no's (anonymous sperm donor, egg donations, surrogate's womb), comes from questionable influence from the Vatican, which opposes IVF for reason that aren't clear at least to me.  Even Scholasticism has no coherent argument.  But then, a coherent argument isn't a hall mark of Scholasticism.

A case I have particular in mind is men who are missing a seminal duct (or some such thing) which happens in some Syrian blood lines, from the intermarriage of cousins preserving the gene.  Many men chose to have semen extracted and then their wives be inseminated with.  I cannot see any moral objection that makes any sense to that.

The only really moral issue is what is done with the "spare embryos."  ALL should be implanted (not all at once, but that is why "extras" are produced in the first place a lot of the time-many are implanted at one time in the hope that at least one will implant).
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« Reply #93 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »


They have the choice to be satisfied with what they DO have in life.  Children are not a necessity.  If God hasn't allowed them to conceive, so be it.
True. But they will always feel that void that comes with it. Nobody to follow after me actually hurts me deeply.


This is a problem YOU have to deal with.

So, when I was a kid, I wanted to marry Mr. Right, live in a house with a white picket fence, have 2 kids, and live the dream.

As I got older, I figured, one child would suffice.

Well, I got none of that...not even the picket fence.  Should I just call it quits?  Give up on life?  Pout and be unhappy until I die?

That's a choice the person must make.

I choose not to be unhappy, but, to take it as an opportunity to do other things with my life.  I am not held back by husband/children and am in a place in my life where I find I can contribute my talents and skills in other ways.

Life goes on.  We cannot be so attached to a dream that we stop living if that dream isn't achieved.  

This goes specifically against the Second Commandment of God - to not make idols for ourselves.  These desires, are idols, as they take over our lives, thoughts and very beings.  They pull us from God and His teachings, leading us to make our own laws, justify our own actions, in order to bow to the idols of our own making.


I would say you are correct on those who are unmarried and use rent a sperm to get that kid that they want, without the Mr.  (renting the womb I think is pretty obvious on the no-no factor).

But for married couples using technology to conceive using their own sperm and eggs for their womb isn't that at all.  In cases where their sperm and eggs cannot conceive (it happens) or their womb can't carry to term, they have to consider adoption-something that those who can conceive and have children the usual way can consider.  But just helping things along....nothing wrong with that.
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« Reply #94 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

A couple anecdotal horror stories is not a good reason to form a basis of opinion on anything. I suspect if you would look at actual data, you would probably see that most IVF works out just fine for the couple.  Regardless of whether it does or does not has no bearing on it's moral status.

I don't think she is worrying.  As she stated numerous times, she asked a question for discussion purposes.

The whole idea of IVF is unethical.

How's that?

When you add "selective reduction" aka the deliberate abortion of "excess" human beings inside a woman's womb, that is murder.
That it is. However frequent it is done, however, does not make it necessary in IVF.
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« Reply #95 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

It is because things like IVF go beyond the limits of human nature which was left by God that the man and the woman have children and together with children they are a family unit. So, the reasons are both physiological and spiritual. People should consider things like adoption and reducing abortion, instead of altering the idea of human nature with its real consequences. I have a post on my blog about this very issue:

http://romanianorthodoxyinenglish.blogspot.ro/2013/10/the-temptation-of-going-beyond-limits.html
So we should drop the kidney transplants and dialysis, and just let 'em die?
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« Reply #96 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

The position(s) of the Church is/are more complicated than your statement , ' Orthodoxy and other Christian denominations absolutely are against any methods of conception other than "the traditional" way'would lead one to conclude.

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

Consultation with your priest may be path for many infertile couples to consider, unfortunately however, depending upon the personality and pastoral prudence of any particular priest, I am not sure that idea is good for everyone. (In other words, I've known my share of priests with whom I would not discuss this matter with under any circumstances. On the other hand, I can think of  dozens of priests, numerous monks and nuns and probably five Bishops from three different backgrounds and jurisdictions who, even though they have differing final opinions on parts of the subject  would be wonderful counselors.)

" 'Struggling With Infertility'  6 million women between the ages of 15 and 44 are clinically infertile. Infertility presents a heartbreaking struggle for many Orthodox couples who wonder whether it is God's will for them to be childless, or whether new fertility technologies (and which ones?) are appropriate. In this edition Kevin speaks with Orthodox theologian and ethicist Fr. John Breck about infertility and what options Orthodox Christian couples have to deal with it within an Orthodox context." http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

The largest Orthodox Church, for instance, does not object to artificial insemination involving a couple:
Quote
In the prayers of the marriage celebration, the Orthodox Church expresses the hope that childbirth, while being a desired fruit of lawful marriage, is not its only purpose. Along with «a fruit of the womb to profit», the Church asks for the gift of enduring love, chastity and «the harmony of the souls and bodies». Therefore, the Church cannot regard as morally justified the ways to childbirth disagreeable with the design of the Creator of life. If a husband or a wife is sterile and the therapeutic and surgical methods of infertility treatment do not help the spouses, they should humbly accept childlessness as a special calling in life. In these cases, pastoral counsel should consider the adoption of a child by the spouses’ mutual consent. Among the admissible means of medical aid may be an artificial insemination by the husband’s germ cells, since it does not violate the integrity of the marital union and does not differ basically from the natural conception and takes place in the context of marital relations.
https://mospat.ru/en/documents/social-concepts/xii/
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« Reply #97 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes

Haven't read that transcript, but are you sure that he didn't want to say that people with erectile dysfunction can't actually ejaculate, or can they?
They can.  What good is does is another question.
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« Reply #98 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

Ioan,
I see you mention adoption. Do you know what an adoption process is like? I've been reading into that as well, as it is brought up as an excuse to go against IVF.
One thing that can happen is to get a baby, bring him home, feed him, wash him, bond with him and two days later have him taken away from you because the birth mother changes her mind and wants her baby back. While, I won't judge the birth mother for wanting her baby back, the pain the adoptive parents feel is unbearable. Adoption is not for everyone, as IVF is not for everyone. Both methods have in the end the desired result (if God allows it). 

P.S. I saw you called the IVF process a monstrosity. I've seen lots of babies bringing happiness to the infertile parents. I won't call that a monstrosity.

I'm not with Ioan on this, but to be fair, kidnapping babies has brought happiness to infertile parents, but monstrosity fits.
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« Reply #99 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

This "The Illumined Heart" transcript from AFR and an interview conducted with Father John Breck is helpful. http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/illuminedheart/struggling_with_infertility

I stopped reading at the point where the good Father said that erectile dysfunction is the inability to ejaculate. Not sure I want to go on with something that gets basic biology that wrong. Roll Eyes
I almost did this with Fr. Josiah Trenham's talk on sex, where he said that drugs prolonging sexual desire like Viagra are forbidden. Viagra doesn't "prolong sexual desire" (though I disagree with Father on that being a bad thing in any case), it just enables the man to do something with the desire he has.

but I went on through the rest.  It confirmed my first impression.
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« Reply #100 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

Are you saying wanting a child is a bad thing?
Like a sin? Or what?

I mean it's not like you want a car, or a big house...We're talking about wanting a child, that parents are willing to offer to God.

If you call IVF a monstrosity, what do you call the end result? The baby?

And please forgive me if I sound pushy. I'm really trying to understand the concept of IVF being a bad thing.
You have to consider where Ioan is coming from:
I believe sex is highly over-rated

This is the greatest understatement ever. But it's this obsession with abstinence that causes the over value. I am sure one of the free marketers could explain the structure of that economy.

But really, sex is the worst.

Thinking of sex makes me puke my guts, really.
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« Reply #101 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

Are you saying wanting a child is a bad thing?
Like a sin? Or what?

I mean it's not like you want a car, or a big house...We're talking about wanting a child, that parents are willing to offer to God.

If you call IVF a monstrosity, what do you call the end result? The baby?

And please forgive me if I sound pushy. I'm really trying to understand the concept of IVF being a bad thing.

Well, if you want to bring a child into the world and cannot conceive one, you have the option to adopt one if you wish.

IVF is bad thing because it is not the natural way, not what God intended. And what God intended was not really a mechanism, but that two human persons (man and woman) procreate and establish a family. This is actually a very deep mystery of life, the way humanity functions. You cannot replace it with a mechanical process; it all becomes a dead thing, a walk towards, well, monstrosity. The result of such a monstrosity (and the word is not used passionately) would be a person with a soul (no doubt about it!), yet his entire existence will be marked by such an abnormal conception in ways that we know and don't know; we definitely don't want to go along this path. Plus, our real problems are abortions and adoptions (we can't be ok with so many babies being, well, murdered and many around the world who don't have anything to eat or a place to stay). Wanting IVF is really an exotic thing with horrendous ramifications and consequences, while not seeing that there are different solutions and crucial problems that need to be fixed instead. Just how I see things and based on that article which was written by prominent Romanian scientist/nun.
Is it the natural way, the way God intended, to have the mere thought of sex make one puke?
I believe sex is highly over-rated

This is the greatest understatement ever. But it's this obsession with abstinence that causes the over value. I am sure one of the free marketers could explain the structure of that economy.

But really, sex is the worst.

Thinking of sex makes me puke my guts, really.

You're not going to conceive many children "the natural way, what God intended" puking on your wife instead of impregnating her.
Won't do much for your marriage either: a girl usually takes offense at such a reaction when she is trying to be desirable.

Being conceived in a rape outdoes the monstrosity factor of IVF, and many throughout the ages have over come that.
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« Reply #102 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

How many times have we read at misuses and abuses?

Would you wish your sons and daughters experimented on?  You cannot possibly guarantee that this would not happen.

What kind of abuses can be done to one zygote that would not stop it from being implemented?
They are used in human experimentation.  Like monkeys.

They want to mandate left over embryos are used for embryonic stem cell research, although adult stem cells have been used in hundreds of thousands of actual treatments that have cured actual people (vs. 0 cures with embryonic stem cells).

No, it is not necessary that zygotes would be abused in IVF.  It is, however, a fact that they are.
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« Reply #103 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

I'm sure at least some of what I have to say will sound insensitive.  It's not my intention.  I've had this sort of conversation when invited to talk to people in troublesome situations like this, and it's really not possible to spell out the Church's thinking without having to deal with a "hard saying" that is difficult for the hearers to understand or accept and for the tellers to communicate.  

When we read Scripture, children are spoken of as a blessing.  When couples today have children, they speak of those children as blessings.  But the two are rarely the same.  

In the past, children were a blessing from God, and people who could not have children may have suffered pain because of the deprivation of this blessing, perhaps they felt shame or inferiority because of it, or were made to feel so by others, but they had no choice but to come to accept it, and/or adopt, participate in the rearing of relatives' children, etc.  

Now we have better means of family planning, we have reproductive technologies, etc., and we also have a more materialistic view of life.  According to this view, children are

an asset
a commodity
a project
a tax break
an attention-grabber
a "life experience"
a status booster, etc.  

Having children is considered to be the real transition into adulthood by people who have children.  If I can't have children, the "blessings" that are I'm missing out on are these subjective blessings for me, for my life, and for my standing in my family, my community, and my society at large.  It's not (or at best it is equally) about not having the objective blessing of children.      

Personally, I think that it is unfair for homosexually oriented people to be told by the Church that their only option according to the gospel is to opt for celibate chastity or enter into a heterosexual marriage, and yet what other option is there according to the gospel, even if it brings them a lot of grief and involves a lot of sacrifice, re-ordering of their lives, overcoming of desires, etc.?  I also feel it is unfair to tell infertile couples that it is wrong to use the new reproductive technologies, but that they should instead adopt or accept that it may not be God's will for them to have the children they desire for whatever reason.  But according to the principles of the gospel, I have a difficult time advising anything else.  

Precisely because of the esteem with which the Orthodox tradition regards marriage, sexuality, and children, I feel that these technologies, by taking the active procreative role of husband and wife and transforming it into a passive, goal-oriented laboratory procedure, are an abuse--they fundamentally conflict with our beliefs about these things.  The love of a man and a woman which causes them to join themselves to each other in physical union with the hope/intention of having a child (itself a sacramental, grace-bearing, grace-conferring experience) is now envisioned as a more "animal" phenomenon, separated into its constituent biological parts, and manipulated by medical practitioners.  Their mandate is to ensure that a child is conceived, and so they follow their procedures in a controlled environment.  They may respect your religious views, but they're not required to respect them more than their patients.  Moreover, these technologies involve other real issues of significant moral, ethical, and theological import: how many ova are fertilised vs how many are implanted, what is done with the "leftovers" (themselves human beings created in the image and likeness of God, albeit created in an atypical manner), and so on.      

The statement that someone posted above...

Quote
IVF offers the chance for a man and a woman to procreate. You need one sperm and one egg. Period. Does it matter where the fertilization happen? I mean, the fertilized egg will be transfered  3-5 days later into the mother's uterus where it will grow how it's supposed to grow, and the fetus will come out ...well...a human being. It's not like IVF will somehow alter our DNA and the end result will be some sort of mutation, an abomination, a monster. No, sir! The baby will be a human being, directly related to the mother and the father. So what's the problem?

...already betrays an acceptance of a non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children.  Here, a child is not a blessing, it is a commodity, and IVF is a project undertaken to obtain that good.  As long as the supplies come from the spouses and the genetic material is not altered, and the end result is manifestly human, "what's the problem?"  Well, I suppose one is free to look at it that way, but I don't think we can say this is how the Church views it.  Our current theology may need to consider these technologies and adequately address their validity from our particular faith perspective (as opposed to just signing on to RC declarations or leaving it exclusively to a couple to decide as they see fit), but based on what we can say here and now, I think the attempts to justify IVF and related technologies leave much to be desired.    
As much as I hate to take issue with you Mor, but in fact taking children as a commodity isn't modern. It's quite ancient: did Hagar have any say in getting impregnated?  St. Clement of Alexandria talks about procreation in ways that make AI seem romantic.

There were ancient means of "reproductive technology."  that they verged on or were actual superstition (like eating mandrakes), the principles are the same.

How different is it to view a woman only as a tool for pleasure than to reduce her to a baby making machine?  And yet neither are recent viewpoints.

Say, for instance, if a woman has a hysterectomy, and then had a transplanted one (like a kidney.  At present, I don't think this is possible).  Should she be forbidden to conceive in the normal course of events?
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« Reply #104 on: October 24, 2013, 02:06:18 AM »

I'm sure at least some of what I have to say will sound insensitive.  It's not my intention.  I've had this sort of conversation when invited to talk to people in troublesome situations like this, and it's really not possible to spell out the Church's thinking without having to deal with a "hard saying" that is difficult for the hearers to understand or accept and for the tellers to communicate.  

When we read Scripture, children are spoken of as a blessing.  When couples today have children, they speak of those children as blessings.  But the two are rarely the same.  

In the past, children were a blessing from God, and people who could not have children may have suffered pain because of the deprivation of this blessing, perhaps they felt shame or inferiority because of it, or were made to feel so by others, but they had no choice but to come to accept it, and/or adopt, participate in the rearing of relatives' children, etc.  

Now we have better means of family planning, we have reproductive technologies, etc., and we also have a more materialistic view of life.  According to this view, children are

an asset
a commodity
a project
a tax break
an attention-grabber
a "life experience"
a status booster, etc.  

Having children is considered to be the real transition into adulthood by people who have children.  If I can't have children, the "blessings" that are I'm missing out on are these subjective blessings for me, for my life, and for my standing in my family, my community, and my society at large.  It's not (or at best it is equally) about not having the objective blessing of children.      

Personally, I think that it is unfair for homosexually oriented people to be told by the Church that their only option according to the gospel is to opt for celibate chastity or enter into a heterosexual marriage, and yet what other option is there according to the gospel, even if it brings them a lot of grief and involves a lot of sacrifice, re-ordering of their lives, overcoming of desires, etc.?  I also feel it is unfair to tell infertile couples that it is wrong to use the new reproductive technologies, but that they should instead adopt or accept that it may not be God's will for them to have the children they desire for whatever reason.  But according to the principles of the gospel, I have a difficult time advising anything else.  

Precisely because of the esteem with which the Orthodox tradition regards marriage, sexuality, and children, I feel that these technologies, by taking the active procreative role of husband and wife and transforming it into a passive, goal-oriented laboratory procedure, are an abuse--they fundamentally conflict with our beliefs about these things.  The love of a man and a woman which causes them to join themselves to each other in physical union with the hope/intention of having a child (itself a sacramental, grace-bearing, grace-conferring experience) is now envisioned as a more "animal" phenomenon, separated into its constituent biological parts, and manipulated by medical practitioners.  Their mandate is to ensure that a child is conceived, and so they follow their procedures in a controlled environment.  They may respect your religious views, but they're not required to respect them more than their patients.  Moreover, these technologies involve other real issues of significant moral, ethical, and theological import: how many ova are fertilised vs how many are implanted, what is done with the "leftovers" (themselves human beings created in the image and likeness of God, albeit created in an atypical manner), and so on.      

The statement that someone posted above...

Quote
IVF offers the chance for a man and a woman to procreate. You need one sperm and one egg. Period. Does it matter where the fertilization happen? I mean, the fertilized egg will be transfered  3-5 days later into the mother's uterus where it will grow how it's supposed to grow, and the fetus will come out ...well...a human being. It's not like IVF will somehow alter our DNA and the end result will be some sort of mutation, an abomination, a monster. No, sir! The baby will be a human being, directly related to the mother and the father. So what's the problem?

...already betrays an acceptance of a non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children.  Here, a child is not a blessing, it is a commodity, and IVF is a project undertaken to obtain that good.  As long as the supplies come from the spouses and the genetic material is not altered, and the end result is manifestly human, "what's the problem?"  Well, I suppose one is free to look at it that way, but I don't think we can say this is how the Church views it.  Our current theology may need to consider these technologies and adequately address their validity from our particular faith perspective (as opposed to just signing on to RC declarations or leaving it exclusively to a couple to decide as they see fit), but based on what we can say here and now, I think the attempts to justify IVF and related technologies leave much to be desired.    
On the womb transplant, it seems I'm more up to date than I knew:
Quote
Woman Pregnant After Uterus Transplant
The first woman to receive a uterus from a dead donor is now pregnant, her doctors announced in Turkey.
Sert was born without a uterus, but her ovaries were intact, according to a hospital press release. The condition affects one in 5,000 women, according to the hospital.
http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/health/2013/04/15/woman-pregnant-after-uterus-transplant/
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« Reply #105 on: October 24, 2013, 03:28:50 AM »



Example of "non-Orthodox understanding of sexuality, procreation, and the bearing and rearing of children".

It's the example of perfect lack of sexuality, procreation and the rest of the results of the human fall. The Theotokos is the New Eve who (without seed) gives birth to Christ, the New Adam who restores human nature back to its original deified state (like the angels). This example transcends the state of man after the fall, takes man back to the divine. IVF would go even below the fallen state, into aberration and non-being.
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« Reply #106 on: October 24, 2013, 03:34:01 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?
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« Reply #107 on: October 24, 2013, 03:35:57 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
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« Reply #108 on: October 24, 2013, 03:45:00 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Gen 1, 28 and 2, 24 disagree with you.
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« Reply #109 on: October 24, 2013, 03:48:04 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Gen 1, 28 and 2, 24 disagree with you.

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this. It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.
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« Reply #110 on: October 24, 2013, 03:51:08 AM »

"Uniting in one flesh" also in spiritual way?
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« Reply #111 on: October 24, 2013, 03:53:39 AM »

"Uniting in one flesh" also in spiritual way?

Yes, they felt what is called divine eros, in a state of God's Grace, between them. But we fell from that and God left sexuality for being fruitful and multiplying (which became impossible for God to accomplish by Himself).
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« Reply #112 on: October 24, 2013, 03:58:52 AM »

Something impossible for God? What?
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« Reply #113 on: October 24, 2013, 04:00:19 AM »

Something impossible for God? What?

What do you mean?
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« Reply #114 on: October 24, 2013, 04:01:45 AM »

Something impossible for God? What?

Then why doesn't God remove sin and evil from the world? Is it impossible for Him? No, it's man's free will that He doesn't wish to overturn.
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« Reply #115 on: October 24, 2013, 05:44:37 AM »

It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

You obviously haven't seen old confession manuals if you believe that. (The most popular one among Greeks, Amartolon Sotiria, dates from the late 1500s.)
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« Reply #116 on: October 24, 2013, 07:53:26 AM »

It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

You obviously haven't seen old confession manuals if you believe that. (The most popular one among Greeks, Amartolon Sotiria, dates from the late 1500s.)

Yet, the modern obsession has reached, not paroxysm (that was before), but normality.
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« Reply #117 on: October 24, 2013, 07:54:15 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Wow, you have some seriously weird hang ups about sex.  Shocked
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« Reply #118 on: October 24, 2013, 07:56:26 AM »

It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

You obviously haven't seen old confession manuals if you believe that. (The most popular one among Greeks, Amartolon Sotiria, dates from the late 1500s.)

Yet, the modern obsession has reached, not paroxysm (that was before), but normality.

Who are you talking about here? Because I do agree with you. The world is obsessed with sex. BUT.....don't take it out on the married couples who want to raise children. There's nothing wrong with wanting babies. I've asked you before. Do you think wanting children is a bad thing?
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« Reply #119 on: October 24, 2013, 08:05:27 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Wow, you have some seriously weird hang ups about sex.  Shocked

Hangs ups? No hang ups, just calling it what it is, a product of the fall, a plan B. Did you read my previous post about divine eros? But that takes a different attitude of the soul. After all, there is a divine eros between God and man, but we do realize it is devoid of any impurity and carnality.
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« Reply #120 on: October 24, 2013, 08:08:10 AM »

It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

You obviously haven't seen old confession manuals if you believe that. (The most popular one among Greeks, Amartolon Sotiria, dates from the late 1500s.)

Yet, the modern obsession has reached, not paroxysm (that was before), but normality.

Who are you talking about here? Because I do agree with you. The world is obsessed with sex. BUT.....don't take it out on the married couples who want to raise children. There's nothing wrong with wanting babies. I've asked you before. Do you think wanting children is a bad thing?

I am not forcing anybody to accept my views. My job is only to offer them in all their honesty and perhaps mention my sources for them. It's anybody's choice if they want to investigate what I say and apply it in their lives. So, I much less want to argue about them.
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« Reply #121 on: October 24, 2013, 08:26:04 AM »

It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

You obviously haven't seen old confession manuals if you believe that. (The most popular one among Greeks, Amartolon Sotiria, dates from the late 1500s.)

Yet, the modern obsession has reached, not paroxysm (that was before), but normality.

Who are you talking about here? Because I do agree with you. The world is obsessed with sex. BUT.....don't take it out on the married couples who want to raise children. There's nothing wrong with wanting babies. I've asked you before. Do you think wanting children is a bad thing?

I am not forcing anybody to accept my views. My job is only to offer them in all their honesty and perhaps mention my sources for them. It's anybody's choice if they want to investigate what I say and apply it in their lives. So, I much less want to argue about them.

Ok...but you can't expect people to agree with you, not even understand what you are saying. In your opinion all of us should stop having sex with each other and practice divine eros. Not only I don't see how the entire world will get to that point (I mean we are talking about His Grace here...it's a highest nature a human can reach), but when it WILL happen...I think it will be the end of the world. Literally.
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« Reply #122 on: October 24, 2013, 08:35:27 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Gen 1, 28 and 2, 24 disagree with you.

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this. It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.
It was the ancient obsession with asceticism (yes, it can be an obsession) that caused many to Stoicize the teachings of the Church.

Yes, they disagree with you.  And your Stoic Fathers.
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« Reply #123 on: October 24, 2013, 08:35:39 AM »

It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

You obviously haven't seen old confession manuals if you believe that. (The most popular one among Greeks, Amartolon Sotiria, dates from the late 1500s.)

Yet, the modern obsession has reached, not paroxysm (that was before), but normality.

Who are you talking about here? Because I do agree with you. The world is obsessed with sex. BUT.....don't take it out on the married couples who want to raise children. There's nothing wrong with wanting babies. I've asked you before. Do you think wanting children is a bad thing?

I am not forcing anybody to accept my views. My job is only to offer them in all their honesty and perhaps mention my sources for them. It's anybody's choice if they want to investigate what I say and apply it in their lives. So, I much less want to argue about them.

Ok...but you can't expect people to agree with you, not even understand what you are saying. In your opinion all of us should stop having sex with each other and practice divine eros. Not only I don't see how the entire world will get to that point (I mean we are talking about His Grace here...it's a highest nature a human can reach), but when it WILL happen...I think it will be the end of the world. Literally.

Like I said, I don't expect anything. It's your choice if you agree. Mine if I agree with you.  I never said sex doesn't have it's place in this world. But, it is also a responsibility and we are also called to progress along the spiritual axis, to return to our initial state from which we fell.
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« Reply #124 on: October 24, 2013, 08:43:37 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Gen 1, 28 and 2, 24 disagree with you.

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this. It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.
It was the ancient obsession with asceticism (yes, it can be an obsession) that caused many to Stoicize the teachings of the Church.

Yes, they disagree with you.  And your Stoic Fathers.

Teachings and fathers aside, we are struggling with humanity as it is. Let us all do what we think is pleasing to God, not to us.
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« Reply #125 on: October 24, 2013, 08:50:54 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Wow, you have some seriously weird hang ups about sex.  Shocked

Hangs ups? No hang ups, just calling it what it is, a product of the fall, a plan B. Did you read my previous post about divine eros? But that takes a different attitude of the soul. After all, there is a divine eros between God and man, but we do realize it is devoid of any impurity and carnality.
Yes, I did read it. Your position seems to be very gnostic.
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« Reply #126 on: October 24, 2013, 08:56:08 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Wow, you have some seriously weird hang ups about sex.  Shocked

Hangs ups? No hang ups, just calling it what it is, a product of the fall, a plan B. Did you read my previous post about divine eros? But that takes a different attitude of the soul. After all, there is a divine eros between God and man, but we do realize it is devoid of any impurity and carnality.
Yes, I did read it. Your position seems to be very gnostic.

I don't consider it gnostic at all. But I prefer each investigates the matter on their own if they wish. I am not trying to convince you! That's your job! Smiley
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« Reply #127 on: October 24, 2013, 09:33:45 AM »

I believe the main issue with IVF revolves around what happens in the lab with the egg/sperm/zygote.

If there is even the slightest chance that these may be abused in some way, then the whole process is negated.

Neither husband, nor wife, have control over their reproductive material once it has left their bodies.  The woman truly doesn't know how many eggs have been harvested, nor what has been done with them.  Neither does the husband know what his sperm will be used to fertilize.

As for the zygotes, well, it stands to reason that they "store" the "extra" to be used if the first attempt of implantation fails.  However, if they implant 8 zygotes, and all 8 take hold....what now?

Now we have a critical pregnancy that often results in the loss of fetuses because of overcrowding, etc.

Furthermore, can the couple actually support 8 children of the exact same age, and give them the upbringing they deserve?  

At this time many parents choose to abort a certain number of the embryos.

What of the zygotes that are still in deep freeze?  Technically, as stated above, they ought to be implanted at a future date.  Well, what if the mother is already in her 40's, and implanting will most likely not be successful in the future, without much added hormone therapy, which in itself is questionable, because of the harm it causes the mother's body?

What if, while the little innocents, are lying in a freezer somewhere, the new parents struggling with raising 8 kids, decide they cannot possible handle any more?  What if due to these struggles, the couple divorces?

What's to become of the 5 additional zygotes in the freezer?  Buried before even living?  Is that fair to those 5 individuals?

This is a very complicated process, with many, many things to take in to account.  

Unfortunately, most couples, blinded by their desire to procreate, never think about any of these possibilities, or often don't think of a zygote as living, while Joey, Suzy, Olga, Mike, and Sam lye freezing in a synthetic container next to Johnny, and James.

When all these possible abuses are contemplated, which in all honesty cannot be controlled by the couple, it seems like other avenues ought to be explored - adoption, foster care, etc.

I completely understand the pain and the yearning of the married couple to have children.  However, one must consider the fate of all those children, not just the lucky one or two who actually get born to see the light of day.

My prayers for all couples who find themselves in this situation.


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« Reply #128 on: October 24, 2013, 10:01:41 AM »

As much as I hate to take issue with you Mor...

After reading your reply #101, I can't stop laughing, I really can't!  So you feel free to take issue with me all you want, sir, because I love you.

Quote
...but in fact taking children as a commodity isn't modern. It's quite ancient: did Hagar have any say in getting impregnated?  St. Clement of Alexandria talks about procreation in ways that make AI seem romantic.

There were ancient means of "reproductive technology."  that they verged on or were actual superstition (like eating mandrakes), the principles are the same.

How different is it to view a woman only as a tool for pleasure than to reduce her to a baby making machine?  And yet neither are recent viewpoints.

Say, for instance, if a woman has a hysterectomy, and then had a transplanted one (like a kidney.  At present, I don't think this is possible).  Should she be forbidden to conceive in the normal course of events?

I concede your points about how "children as commodities" and "women as..." are not recent viewpoints.  But I don't know if we can make the case that, according to the teaching of Scripture, this is what children and women are.  Certainly, we read of these things in the historical accounts preserved in Scripture, but I'd chalk that up to God working with people where they are, with all their human and cultural limitations.  But in terms of the Scriptural teaching?  Is the point of those passages really that children are commodities or what have you?  I wouldn't say so, and it's based on that understanding that I spoke.

I'll also concede your point about St Clement, and about the Fathers more generally, if I can expand on it.  Really, I can't understand how they read Scripture and came up with even half of their teachings on sexuality which go against the plain sense of the words.  I think, on this issue at least, there was definitely some other agenda that, being categorised under "chastity" or "virginity", seemed to legitimise those "anti-sex" views.

I can't speak to your point about uterine transplants because my thinking on organ transplants is not as solid as it once was.  I had a lengthy conversation with a psychologist once about the heart, and he mentioned that there was some fairly big quantity of nerves directly connecting the brain to the heart, and that there have been documented cases of people who've received heart transplants and suddenly have memories and experiences of the donor, even if they never knew him/her.  I spoke to him about some of the Orthodox theology of prayer, and specifically about the role of the mind and the heart in this, and he seemed to feel it was confirmed to some extent by science.  After that, I'm honestly not sure if I agree with *all* transplants.  In principle, I do (I don't like people suffering and dying), but that heart stuff really threw me for a loop.       
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« Reply #129 on: October 24, 2013, 10:06:51 AM »

Wow! I never heard of that, Mor. Here is an article I just found about the phenomenon.  Shocked Shocked Shocked

http://guardianlv.com/2013/06/organ-transplants-cellular-memory-proves-major-organs-have-self-contained-brains/
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« Reply #130 on: October 24, 2013, 10:07:20 AM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Gen 1, 28 and 2, 24 disagree with you.

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this. It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

Not that this is the thread in which to pursue this tangent seriously, but LOL.  Those stupid Hebrews and their primitive, tribal views, it's a wonder God chose them.  We thank God that Greek philosophy saved us from the pitfalls of enjoying sex.    
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« Reply #131 on: October 24, 2013, 10:09:57 AM »

But some people actually DO want children. And they do not want them because they want to somehow fulfill their selfishness, but they actually genuinely want children. You can't compare this desire to anything else in the world. Like I said, it's not like you want a better car, or a bigger house. It's not like you want to harm somebody, or take away something that belongs to someone else. It's not an idol that you want to worship. You're not cheating on your husband. You're not being disrespectful to your parents. It has nothing to do with your neighbor. You just want a child. Sure. It comes a moment in your life when you might want to refocus that energy, and you might need to find another mission, but don't you want to try everything humanly possible to have a child? I would.

Except adoption? Or foster care?

With the caveat that this is totally my own personal opinion, I think that people who truly want to have children but are unable to get pregnant, would move heaven and earth to adopt or become foster parents. I think that if their motivation is to truly parent and care for children, that is what they would do. The adoption process is no less onerous than IVF. There are millions of children out there who pray every day for a "forever family."
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« Reply #132 on: October 24, 2013, 10:17:59 AM »

But some people actually DO want children. And they do not want them because they want to somehow fulfill their selfishness, but they actually genuinely want children. You can't compare this desire to anything else in the world. Like I said, it's not like you want a better car, or a bigger house. It's not like you want to harm somebody, or take away something that belongs to someone else. It's not an idol that you want to worship. You're not cheating on your husband. You're not being disrespectful to your parents. It has nothing to do with your neighbor. You just want a child. Sure. It comes a moment in your life when you might want to refocus that energy, and you might need to find another mission, but don't you want to try everything humanly possible to have a child? I would.

Except adoption? Or foster care?

There are millions of children out there who pray every day for a "forever family."

Watch this documentary.
http://video.pbs.org/video/2365084296/

Like I said...is not as easy as it sounds, and not everybody is a good fit for adoption.
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« Reply #133 on: October 24, 2013, 10:45:58 AM »

But some people actually DO want children. And they do not want them because they want to somehow fulfill their selfishness, but they actually genuinely want children. You can't compare this desire to anything else in the world. Like I said, it's not like you want a better car, or a bigger house. It's not like you want to harm somebody, or take away something that belongs to someone else. It's not an idol that you want to worship. You're not cheating on your husband. You're not being disrespectful to your parents. It has nothing to do with your neighbor. You just want a child. Sure. It comes a moment in your life when you might want to refocus that energy, and you might need to find another mission, but don't you want to try everything humanly possible to have a child? I would.

Except adoption? Or foster care?

There are millions of children out there who pray every day for a "forever family."

Watch this documentary.
http://video.pbs.org/video/2365084296/

Like I said...is not as easy as it sounds, and not everybody is a good fit for adoption.

I would submit that if you are not a good fit for adoption, then you should seriously examine your motivation for wanting to become a parent, as well as your fitness to be one. A dear friend of mine adopted 3 older children from Ukraine and while the process was expensive, frustrating, stressful and all the rest, it was no more so than IVF.

Again, just my opinion, but if a person's true motivation is to love and care for children, then they will do whatever it takes - including adoption and foster care, because they understand that there are children out there who need them.
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« Reply #134 on: October 24, 2013, 11:07:14 AM »

I truly don't understand how can you compare having your own children with having somebody else's children. Sure you will develop love for that adopted child. It will grow and you will make sure that child is well taken care of. But you can't compare the two. The woman carries in her own body a child for 9 months. The relationship between the fertilized egg and the woman forms instantly and develops and grows and nobody that is not a Mom can comprehend this feeling. And nobody can possibly ask from somebody to just give up on the dream to have their own children and just go ahead and adopt because there are so many children ready "to be saved".
I just simply don't agree. Not from the point of view of a woman ready to bear children.
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« Reply #135 on: October 24, 2013, 11:10:14 AM »

I truly don't understand how can you compare having your own children with having somebody else's children. Sure you will develop love for that adopted child. It will grow and you will make sure that child is well taken care of. But you can't compare the two. The woman carries in her own body a child for 9 months. The relationship between the fertilized egg and the woman forms instantly and develops and grows and nobody that is not a Mom can comprehend this feeling. And nobody can possibly ask from somebody to just give up on the dream to have their own children and just go ahead and adopt because there are so many children ready "to be saved".
I just simply don't agree. Not from the point of view of a woman ready to bear children.

Eeek!  Shocked 

Don't tell parents of an adopted child that it is not their own child or that it is someone else's child.  It will not bode well for your physical health.
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« Reply #136 on: October 24, 2013, 11:21:46 AM »

I'm not, don't worry.
But since everybody here got so technical about IVF is and does, we can go ahead and get technical with adoptions also.
I don't think they are the perfect solution for a couple that wants children.
Then all married couple out there should go ahead and adopt and forget about having their own children.
There are so many children already in the world, why make more?!?!?!?
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« Reply #137 on: October 24, 2013, 11:28:19 AM »


Adoption is risky, as well.  In addition to the costs and paperwork and long wait, you do not know what you are getting in to.  The parents will not know the history of the child, any chromosomal or personality issues that might come to surface in the future, etc.

However, the difference between IVF and adoption, is that with IVF there is a chance of killing life, and with adoption, it is saving a life.

DPaula, don't stress.  I think you said you've only been married a short while.  Don't stress or put pressure on yourself, as that doesn't help matters.

Relax, pray, enjoy each other's company and wait for the miracle to happen!  Wink
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« Reply #138 on: October 24, 2013, 11:35:06 AM »

I don't mean to disparage adoption, certainly it's an honorable course, but how could it ever compare to the fruit of one's own flesh?

There's something visceral about it, which all the love in the world cannot replace. After all, we may be co-heirs with Christ, but the Son will always be the Father's only-begotten.
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« Reply #139 on: October 24, 2013, 11:39:19 AM »

I truly don't understand how can you compare having your own children with having somebody else's children. Sure you will develop love for that adopted child. It will grow and you will make sure that child is well taken care of. But you can't compare the two. The woman carries in her own body a child for 9 months. The relationship between the fertilized egg and the woman forms instantly and develops and grows and nobody that is not a Mom can comprehend this feeling. And nobody can possibly ask from somebody to just give up on the dream to have their own children and just go ahead and adopt because there are so many children ready "to be saved".
I just simply don't agree. Not from the point of view of a woman ready to bear children.

Talk to some adoptive parents and ask them whether or not they love their children, just like they love their "real" children. Or better yet, tell them it can't compare to a "real" mother's or father's love. Only you might want to wear kevlar and be ready to duck.
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« Reply #140 on: October 24, 2013, 11:47:38 AM »

I truly don't understand how can you compare having your own children with having somebody else's children.

Let us admit that this attitude is fundamental in understanding why couples having trouble conceiving "normally" seek out these reproductive technologies of questionable ethical and moral value rather than adopting, fostering, etc.  It's the difference between MY children and SOMEBODY ELSE'S children.  I'm not saying it's a good thing or a bad thing, but it's definitely a thing, and it's definitely about me. 

Because this is such a powerful, fundamental motivation, I think it requires open and honest introspection and reflection of each individual as well as the couple as a couple with mature spiritual guidance, before considering "dangerous" practices. 
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« Reply #141 on: October 24, 2013, 11:49:37 AM »

My wife and I are actually in the process of considering adoption.  We have two children of our own right now and if we chose, we could probably pop out a bunch more as she got pregnant the first month we were trying on each of the previous two. We both feel that there are so many underprivileged kids out there that could use a good family, that it would be better to do that rather than birthing more.  I cannot imagine going through the adoption process and not loving that child just as much as my two kids now.  From what I have heard from other parents with adopted children, they do not see that child any differently than children they have birthed.  Obviously there are exceptions, but that has been the general impression I have gotten.
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« Reply #142 on: October 24, 2013, 11:50:28 AM »

I don't mean to disparage adoption, certainly it's an honorable course, but how could it ever compare to the fruit of one's own flesh?



My question exactly!
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« Reply #143 on: October 24, 2013, 11:51:50 AM »

My wife and I are actually in the process of considering adoption.  We have two children of our own right now and if we chose, we could probably pop out a bunch more as she got pregnant the first month we were trying on each of the previous two. We both feel that there are so many underprivileged kids out there that could use a good family, that it would be better to do that rather than birthing more.  I cannot imagine going through the adoption process and not loving that child just as much as my two kids now.  From what I have heard from other parents with adopted children, they do not see that child any differently than children they have birthed.  Obviously there are exceptions, but that has been the general impression I have gotten.

Did you watch the documentary I posted?
It opened my eyes quite a bit about "saving kids"
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« Reply #144 on: October 24, 2013, 11:57:41 AM »

I don't mean to disparage adoption, certainly it's an honorable course, but how could it ever compare to the fruit of one's own flesh?



My question exactly!

Maybe it is because I'm a dad and not the mom, but I did NOT feel attached to my children for probably the first 6 months of their lives.  Both my wife and I were grumpy, sleep deprived and short tempered.  If I could have pushed that baby right back up inside her, I would have. As you spend time with the child and see them develop and grow attached to you, that bond forms.  There are MANY stories of women (and men) who want nothing to do with their baby when it comes out.  It is a very difficult emotional time. Don't get sucked into the stupid TV shows like "Bringing Home Baby".  That isn't real life. I would give my life for my kids, but it isn't because part of them is my sperm. It is because I have invested so much time, emotion and effort into their lives.  The same thing goes for adopted children as well.
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« Reply #145 on: October 24, 2013, 11:57:53 AM »

I don't mean to disparage adoption, certainly it's an honorable course, but how could it ever compare to the fruit of one's own flesh?

There's something visceral about it, which all the love in the world cannot replace. After all, we may be co-heirs with Christ, but the Son will always be the Father's only-begotten.

Higher than the love of the flesh is the love of The Gospel. The love of the flesh is neither towards nor against salvation, while the love of The Gospel is the only one that saves. The love of The Gospel sees everybody as their neighbor or brother/sister in Christ. Children do not belong to you, but are in the image and likeness of God and they are supposed to be given to God. You are only responsible for giving birth and raising them in the fear of The Lord. Yet, if you cannot give birth to children, there are other ways you can be a parent, even in spiritual ways. Ultimately, if you cannot be a parent for whatever reason, it's best to stay away. You tell God you don't fell capable and ask for His guidance. It's better than to require technological methods or to have children in order to own them and stuff like that. Let's make it clear again, people are called to be parents, no to "have children". There is a difference, and we all know what we will be judged for. Same we will be judged for anything that we do against the established order of God. So, we definitely need to listen to our conscience.
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« Reply #146 on: October 24, 2013, 12:06:37 PM »

My wife and I are actually in the process of considering adoption.  We have two children of our own right now and if we chose, we could probably pop out a bunch more as she got pregnant the first month we were trying on each of the previous two. We both feel that there are so many underprivileged kids out there that could use a good family, that it would be better to do that rather than birthing more.  I cannot imagine going through the adoption process and not loving that child just as much as my two kids now.  From what I have heard from other parents with adopted children, they do not see that child any differently than children they have birthed.  Obviously there are exceptions, but that has been the general impression I have gotten.

Did you watch the documentary I posted?
It opened my eyes quite a bit about "saving kids"
I have not seen it, but I have heard about it.  There are big cultural issues if adopting from overseas, but that isn't even necessary.  Just about every county in every state in the country has long lists of kids looking for forever homes. That is the big problem with stories like this.  Producers show one anecdote and people base life choices on such things. I work in the legal profession.  I could post pics of here about dead kids in auto accidents and tell you heartbreaking stories, but that isn't a good reason not to own a car, it is good to be cautious, but don't make decisions on an emotional 1 hour PBS special.

I hope you don't feel that I'm picking on you.  I understand your feelings.  When my wife and I were newlyweds, we couldn't imagine the idea of adopting.  There is definitely an inate desire in people to reproduce.  I would, however, STRONGLY caution everyone not to just rule it out as an option just because you feel it might not "be for you"
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« Reply #147 on: October 24, 2013, 12:15:35 PM »

I truly don't understand how can you compare having your own children with having somebody else's children.

Let us admit that this attitude is fundamental in understanding why couples having trouble conceiving "normally" seek out these reproductive technologies of questionable ethical and moral value rather than adopting, fostering, etc.  It's the difference between MY children and SOMEBODY ELSE'S children.  I'm not saying it's a good thing or a bad thing, but it's definitely a thing, and it's definitely about me. 

Because this is such a powerful, fundamental motivation, I think it requires open and honest introspection and reflection of each individual as well as the couple as a couple with mature spiritual guidance, before considering "dangerous" practices. 

I really don't agree. You and others make wanting children sound so bad, when in fact isn't.
 And so far there was no reasonable reason given as to why IVF is bad.
I'm not quite sure that what's been said here is the official position of the Church regarding this matter.
It sounds more like personal opinions. Which is ok. But don't start blaming people for wanting children and push them to adopt. This is so wrong! You never know what somebody is going through, you never know their life stories, so you can't just come up here and impose rules on something not even the Church has a clear understanding of...at least not yet.
I'm kinda sorry I started this thread. Where I wanted to understand the reasoning behind IVF being frowned upon, I found judgements and accusations of all sorts. Sad, really!


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« Reply #148 on: October 24, 2013, 12:19:43 PM »

Maybe it is because I'm a dad

Impressive. Didn't knew that. For some reason I can't imagine you as dad  Smiley

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« Reply #149 on: October 24, 2013, 12:22:14 PM »

I truly don't understand how can you compare having your own children with having somebody else's children.

Let us admit that this attitude is fundamental in understanding why couples having trouble conceiving "normally" seek out these reproductive technologies of questionable ethical and moral value rather than adopting, fostering, etc.  It's the difference between MY children and SOMEBODY ELSE'S children.  I'm not saying it's a good thing or a bad thing, but it's definitely a thing, and it's definitely about me.  

Because this is such a powerful, fundamental motivation, I think it requires open and honest introspection and reflection of each individual as well as the couple as a couple with mature spiritual guidance, before considering "dangerous" practices.  

I really don't agree. You and others make wanting children sound so bad, when in fact isn't.
 And so far there was no reasonable reason given as to why IVF is bad.
I'm not quite sure that what's been said here is the official position of the Church regarding this matter.
It sounds more like personal opinions. Which is ok. But don't start blaming people for wanting children and push them to adopt. This is so wrong! You never know what somebody is going through, you never know their life stories, so you can't just come up here and impose rules on something not even the Church has a clear understanding of...at least not yet.
I'm kinda sorry I started this thread. Where I wanted to understand the reasoning behind IVF being frowned upon, I found judgements and accusations of all sorts. Sad, really!




It's not sad, it's happy from my perspective because The Church supports everything that is beneficial for the soul and preserves the integrity and dignity of humanity and life in general. God will provide ways for us, even if it sounds impossible to us to remain within the frames of normality. Asking if IVF is right or wrong is not a scientific or philosophical question and definitely not a matter of personal preference. It is best to weigh things like these from above, from a spiritual perspective. It is definitely an important ethical problem that we would turn to God for an answer, and not matter of offering superficial arguments or personal preferences.
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« Reply #150 on: October 24, 2013, 12:26:05 PM »

Maybe it is because I'm a dad

Impressive. Didn't knew that. For some reason I can't imagine you as dad  Smiley


I have two girls.  You should see me when I'm dressed up in full Disney princess regalia.  I would make Ru Paul jealous.
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« Reply #151 on: October 24, 2013, 12:27:25 PM »

Maybe it is because I'm a dad

Impressive. Didn't knew that. For some reason I can't imagine you as dad  Smiley


I have two girls.  You should see me when I'm dressed up in full Disney princess regalia.  I would make Ru Paul jealous.

LOL. Don't worry, I won't judge you. One day I went to school in a little pink dress.
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« Reply #152 on: October 24, 2013, 12:28:19 PM »

Maybe it is because I'm a dad

Impressive. Didn't knew that. For some reason I can't imagine you as dad  Smiley


I have two girls.  You should see me when I'm dressed up in full Disney princess regalia.  I would make Ru Paul jealous.

LOL. Don't worry, I won't judge you. One day I went to school in a little pink dress.
See?  you are ready for daughters already.  Wink
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« Reply #153 on: October 24, 2013, 12:59:53 PM »

I really don't agree. You and others make wanting children sound so bad, when in fact isn't.

I'm sorry.  Look, we don't know each other in real life, so for all you know I could be some nutjob on the internet.  You have every right to think so.  

But, for whatever it's worth, believe me: I don't think wanting your own children is bad at all.  I love kids: I love playing with them, I love talking to them, I enjoy trying to teach them things and learning from them, I relish chances to help other people (friends, family) with their kids, and I hope for my own.  But I'm currently in a place in my life where I'm certain I won't have my own children for several years, and honestly I don't know if I ever will have even one.  If I spend any significant length of time reflecting on that, it's not unusual for me to weep.  I'm not just saying that, either, whether anyone here believes it or not.  

But even with such strong feelings on the matter, I don't know if I can justify "any means" of fulfilling that desire of mine.  Based on what I know about reproductive technologies like IVF as they currently stand and my understanding of Orthodox Christian theology, I don't know that I could justify that particular means.  Certainly, some objections would have to be resolved unequivocally, but even after that I'd have to ask if this is one of those things that, to paraphrase St Paul, may be lawful but may not be helpful.  

I'm aware that people who feel so strongly about something and encounter increasing desperation in not attaining it may decide to compromise on values they would otherwise uphold as general principles in order to make an exception for themselves and get what they want.  I know that because I do it all the time, and then, if I'm honest, I have to confess it because it's sinful, however big or small.  I try not to judge people for making these compromises because I've done it and done it big time.  But at the same time, I can't say that it's entirely justified.  Once, a priest told me in confession, "Don't sin: but if you have to sin, at least remember that it is a sin".  It sounds scandalous, but I think his point was that we should at least know that something is wrong when we choose to do it, because once we start to confuse error for truth, we're really screwed.        

By no means am I saying that having your own kids is a bad thing to want.  But there are so many issues to wrestle with in these cases.  The couple who is eager to have their own kids and cannot do so "normally" focus on that issue and how to resolve it, they're not necessarily thinking of anything else but that.  And that's why I said they need to reflect individually, as a married couple, and also with mature spiritual guidance and support of family/friends, not just with doctors and technicians.  These situations are more multifaceted than people within them can appreciate, and having "objective" counsel is helpful and, IMO, necessary.  

Quote
You never know what somebody is going through, you never know their life stories, so you can't just come up here and impose rules on something not even the Church has a clear understanding of...at least not yet.

I don't know if I'd agree that we're imposing rules on something that the Church doesn't yet have a clear understanding about.  Speaking for myself, what I'm doing is pointing out that, based on what we do know, there are enough concerns and red flags about the practice that it would be better not to do it.  In other words, maybe the practice can be done in a better way, but as it stands right now, it's not really morally neutral.  And if it's not morally neutral or beneficial, what right do I have to say that someone should just go ahead and do it because the Church hasn't made up its mind yet?      
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« Reply #154 on: October 24, 2013, 01:17:33 PM »

It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

You obviously haven't seen old confession manuals if you believe that. (The most popular one among Greeks, Amartolon Sotiria, dates from the late 1500s.)

Yet, the modern obsession has reached, not paroxysm (that was before), but normality.

Who are you talking about here? Because I do agree with you. The world is obsessed with sex. BUT.....don't take it out on the married couples who want to raise children. There's nothing wrong with wanting babies. I've asked you before. Do you think wanting children is a bad thing?

I am not forcing anybody to accept my views. My job is only to offer them in all their honesty and perhaps mention my sources for them. It's anybody's choice if they want to investigate what I say and apply it in their lives. So, I much less want to argue about them.

Ok...but you can't expect people to agree with you, not even understand what you are saying. In your opinion all of us should stop having sex with each other and practice divine eros. Not only I don't see how the entire world will get to that point (I mean we are talking about His Grace here...it's a highest nature a human can reach), but when it WILL happen...I think it will be the end of the world. Literally.

Like I said, I don't expect anything. It's your choice if you agree. Mine if I agree with you.  I never said sex doesn't have it's place in this world.
A latrine you mean?
But, it is also a responsibility and we are also called to progress along the spiritual axis, to return to our initial state from which we fell.
Our initial state: "God made man in the Image of God....male and female He made them."
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« Reply #155 on: October 24, 2013, 01:17:33 PM »

I believe the main issue with IVF revolves around what happens in the lab with the egg/sperm/zygote.

If there is even the slightest chance that these may be abused in some way, then the whole process is negated.

Neither husband, nor wife, have control over their reproductive material once it has left their bodies.  The woman truly doesn't know how many eggs have been harvested, nor what has been done with them.  Neither does the husband know what his sperm will be used to fertilize.

As for the zygotes, well, it stands to reason that they "store" the "extra" to be used if the first attempt of implantation fails.  However, if they implant 8 zygotes, and all 8 take hold....what now?
Octomom answered the question for us.  But then the number of embryos and the method they were implanted wasn't the first problem with her situation.

Now we have a critical pregnancy that often results in the loss of fetuses because of overcrowding, etc.

Furthermore, can the couple actually support 8 children of the exact same age, and give them the upbringing they deserve?  

At this time many parents choose to abort a certain number of the embryos.

What of the zygotes that are still in deep freeze?  Technically, as stated above, they ought to be implanted at a future date.  Well, what if the mother is already in her 40's, and implanting will most likely not be successful in the future, without much added hormone therapy, which in itself is questionable, because of the harm it causes the mother's body?
It is, but is already done with women conceiving the old fashioned way.

What if, while the little innocents, are lying in a freezer somewhere, the new parents struggling with raising 8 kids, decide they cannot possible handle any more?  What if due to these struggles, the couple divorces?

What's to become of the 5 additional zygotes in the freezer?  Buried before even living?  Is that fair to those 5 individuals?

This is a very complicated process, with many, many things to take in to account.  

Unfortunately, most couples, blinded by their desire to procreate, never think about any of these possibilities, or often don't think of a zygote as living, while Joey, Suzy, Olga, Mike, and Sam lye freezing in a synthetic container next to Johnny, and James.

When all these possible abuses are contemplated, which in all honesty cannot be controlled by the couple, it seems like other avenues ought to be explored - adoption, foster care, etc.

I completely understand the pain and the yearning of the married couple to have children.  However, one must consider the fate of all those children, not just the lucky one or two who actually get born to see the light of day.

My prayers for all couples who find themselves in this situation.
It is complicated.  To be honest, I don't think much thought has been given to it because a) the world doesn't care about morality and b) those in with some sort of authority in the Church who have expressed an opinion have been misinformed.  In a moral vacuum, all sorts of things happen.

That all embryos conceived IVF must be implanted has to be taken into account.  The world doesn't.  Any thought on the viability and chances of IVF embryos must be seen in the context that about half of all conceived children miscarry, the majority before the woman even knows she is pregnant.  The Church hasn't as far as I have seen.
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« Reply #156 on: October 24, 2013, 01:17:33 PM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Gen 1, 28 and 2, 24 disagree with you.

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this. It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.

Not that this is the thread in which to pursue this tangent seriously, but LOL.  Those stupid Hebrews and their primitive, tribal views, it's a wonder God chose them.  We thank God that Greek philosophy saved us from the pitfalls of enjoying sex.    
Spot on as usual.
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« Reply #157 on: October 24, 2013, 02:55:49 PM »

After all, we may be co-heirs with Christ, but the Son will always be the Father's only-begotten.
In Christ, both men and women can be exalted to the status of only begotten son, without being homoousion to Patri.

I don't mean to disparage adoption, certainly it's an honorable course, but how could it ever compare to the fruit of one's own flesh?
Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.
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« Reply #158 on: October 24, 2013, 03:15:03 PM »


That all embryos conceived IVF must be implanted has to be taken into account.  The world doesn't.  Any thought on the viability and chances of IVF embryos must be seen in the context that about half of all conceived children miscarry, the majority before the woman even knows she is pregnant.  The Church hasn't as far as I have seen.

Yes, but, a miscarriage is beyond human control, and not intentional.

The destruction of zygotes, or experimentation on them, is intentional.
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« Reply #159 on: October 24, 2013, 03:31:59 PM »

I really don't agree. You and others make wanting children sound so bad, when in fact isn't.
I'm really pretty sure that no one on this thread has said that. So that's just a straw man.

 
Quote
And so far there was no reasonable reason given as to why IVF is bad.
I'm not quite sure that what's been said here is the official position of the Church regarding this matter.
Actually, they have. In great detail. Liza (I think) linked a paper from the Church of Greece and someone else from the GOA website.

Quote
It sounds more like personal opinions. Which is ok. But don't start blaming people for wanting children and push them to adopt.
Seriously? Have you even read what people have posted? You asked a question - people answered. You didn't like the answers or the answers didn't agree with your own personal opinions.

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Sad, really!

Now there, you and I agree. It is sad that you asked a question, people answered with both personal opinions, facts and the Church's position. You didn't like what you heard, so you rejected it.



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« Reply #160 on: October 24, 2013, 03:39:28 PM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.
Gen 1, 28 and 2, 24 disagree with you.

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this. It's only the modern obsession with sex that cause many to want to modernize the teachings of The Church. To each, their own.
I think I figured out your major problem. Put down the Fathers and Theologians.

Return back to the Scriptures.
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« Reply #161 on: October 24, 2013, 03:43:37 PM »

BTW that was directed at you generally speaking from posts elsewhere, I've seen the same thing from you.

Anytime someone says "Well the Fathers/theologians say..." I stop listening.
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« Reply #162 on: October 24, 2013, 04:01:45 PM »

BTW that was directed at you generally speaking from posts elsewhere, I've seen the same thing from you.

Anytime someone says "Well the Fathers/theologians say..." I stop listening.

That's just as ill-advised as ignoring Scripture. 
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« Reply #163 on: October 24, 2013, 04:04:56 PM »

BTW that was directed at you generally speaking from posts elsewhere, I've seen the same thing from you.

Anytime someone says "Well the Fathers/theologians say..." I stop listening.

That's just as ill-advised as ignoring Scripture. 
"The bible says" is another way to lose someone's attention.
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« Reply #164 on: October 24, 2013, 04:05:51 PM »

I would prefer to actually see what the fathers say as opposed to liberal paraphrases.

As the fathers/theologians say: Putting poo in the food makes it stink.

Or something like that.
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« Reply #165 on: October 24, 2013, 04:06:37 PM »

I would prefer to actually see what the fathers say as opposed to liberal paraphrases.

As the fathers/theologians say: Putting poo in the food makes it stink.

Or something like that.

IVF didn't exist back in the days of the Fathers.
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« Reply #166 on: October 24, 2013, 04:08:05 PM »

I would prefer to actually see what the fathers say as opposed to liberal paraphrases.

As the fathers/theologians say: Putting poo in the food makes it stink.

Or something like that.

IVF didn't exist back in the days of the Fathers.
Keep up man!  We are arguing about if sex is bad or not now.
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« Reply #167 on: October 24, 2013, 04:11:55 PM »

Do you say there would be no procreation in Eden? What?

You mean before the fall? No, Adam and Eve lived in state of Grace, like the angels. God was going to multiply our race in ways similar to the way He made Eve by filling Adam's rib.

What would be the point of sexual organs and, indeed, different sexes then? Or would you claim that those things are results of the Fall?

What a world it would be if Man consisted entirely of sexless beings. Just imagine that sweet, sweet mitotic action!
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« Reply #168 on: October 24, 2013, 04:13:32 PM »

Sex organs are a result of the fall so that Eve could kick Adam in the balls for screwing up the whole fruit thing.
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« Reply #169 on: October 24, 2013, 04:16:54 PM »

Sex organs are a result of the fall so that Eve could kick Adam in the balls for screwing up the whole fruit thing.

Nope.  Tongue

Anyway, I'm not a mod, but maybe we should wrap up that particular tangent.  I do think it's worth pursuing in another thread, however, because, to be fair to him, IoanC is not the only one who holds his views claiming patristic support, and it's certainly out there and needs to be addressed. 
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« Reply #170 on: October 24, 2013, 05:45:39 PM »

I really don't agree. You and others make wanting children sound so bad, when in fact isn't.
I'm really pretty sure that no one on this thread has said that. So that's just a straw man.

I asked this question a bunch of times and nobody replied with "yes" or "no", but I can't remember who compared wanting children with wanting a car. Somebody else compared the desire to have children with praying to idols. I can go on.

 
Quote
Quote
And so far there was no reasonable reason given as to why IVF is bad.
I'm not quite sure that what's been said here is the official position of the Church regarding this matter.
Actually, they have. In great detail. Liza (I think) linked a paper from the Church of Greece and someone else from the GOA website.
Actually, the links provided talk about IVF with "reservation" calling it "controversial" , but there's no definite "NO to IVF" anywhere. It's more of a case by case, talk to your priest kind of thing.

Quote
Quote
It sounds more like personal opinions. Which is ok. But don't start blaming people for wanting children and push them to adopt.
Seriously? Have you even read what people have posted? You asked a question - people answered. You didn't like the answers or the answers didn't agree with your own personal opinions.

 What people wrote are personal opinions. The Church does not have a canon against it, for example. Or does it?
I was actually looking for "why" would IVF be frowned upon. And all I got was some horror stories that don't apply in the majority of cases. While I agree that a lot of couples don't care about zygotes and what happens to them, that can't possibly mean that the Church can't formulate a complete answer and educate the infertile couples on what they can do to have an ethical IVF.

I can't and won't throw IVF in the garbage just yet. Let me ask you this.
Should we stop taking pain killers when we need them, just because people overdosed on them?
Should we stop going to Church just because some priest decided to sexual harass people?
Should we stop driving just because people got rich from selling cars at our expense?
Should I throw away my computer because it was built by small little Chinese children that are way underpaid?
Should we stop public schools from functioning Just because teachers are having sexual relationships with their students?

Now let me ask you this.
Should the Church marry gay people just because they are now allowed by law to do so in a civil court?
Should the Church be ok with abortion just because doctors are allowed by law to perform them?
Should the Church be ok with premarital sexual relationship just because two people are deeply in love and allowed by law to fornicate?


Quote
Quote
Sad, really!

Now there, you and I agree. It is sad that you asked a question, people answered with both personal opinions, facts and the Church's position. You didn't like what you heard, so you rejected it.

I just don't think the answers received are enough to make me understand IVF is bad. So far, there's nothing I read that can suggest that.
But I read enough guilt trips and judgements. That I got enough of to make me sad.
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« Reply #171 on: October 24, 2013, 05:51:10 PM »

I would prefer to actually see what the fathers say as opposed to liberal paraphrases.

As the fathers/theologians say: Putting poo in the food makes it stink.

Or something like that.

IVF didn't exist back in the days of the Fathers.
Keep up man!  We are arguing about if sex is bad or not now.

This thread truly is a gift that keeps on giving  Undecided
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« Reply #172 on: October 24, 2013, 05:54:36 PM »

I'm sorry for you guys this is funny!

I take this very seriously and if it doesn't raise to your standards you can go ahead and stop reading it.
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« Reply #173 on: October 24, 2013, 05:56:46 PM »

I'm sorry for you guys this is funny!

I take this very seriously and if it doesn't raise to your standards you can go ahead and stop reading it.

I had a twin brother that died due to being not as developed as me. No in-vitro, just the normal way. I kinda understand what it means to prey on fellow embryos so do not worry I treat it seriously.
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« Reply #174 on: October 24, 2013, 06:25:33 PM »

I'm sorry for you guys this is funny!

I take this very seriously and if it doesn't raise to your standards you can go ahead and stop reading it.
We did take the conversation seriously.  There was an honest discussion.  Everyone disagreed with each other, it isn't likely to get resolved to everyone's satisfaction in the near future. Do you have more questions?
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« Reply #175 on: October 24, 2013, 06:33:49 PM »

Nope.
It's all yours.
Trash it as you please.
Buh-bye.
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« Reply #176 on: October 24, 2013, 06:40:22 PM »

Actually, the links provided talk about IVF with "reservation" calling it "controversial" , but there's no definite "NO to IVF" anywhere. It's more of a case by case, talk to your priest kind of thing.

So you're OK with going along with something that comes with controversy and reservations just because there's no definite "NO"?  

Whether or not you eat vertebrate fish during Great Lent is a case by case, ask your priest issue.  Attending non-Orthodox services with your non-Orthodox spouse while you yourself are in the conversion process is a case by case, ask your priest issue.  

IVF is at least more complicated than fish.  

Quote
What people wrote are personal opinions. The Church does not have a canon against it, for example. Or does it?

How can the Church have a canon for or against IVF?  It's a fairly recent procedure whose ethical and moral dimensions have yet to be fully understood.  

Until then, we certainly do have principles, non-negotiable in and of themselves, which are applicable.  And they raise more cons than pros.
  
Quote
I was actually looking for "why" would IVF be frowned upon. And all I got was some horror stories that don't apply in the majority of cases.

I've strenuously avoided "horror stories", so please see my posts again.  

Quote
While I agree that a lot of couples don't care about zygotes and what happens to them, that can't possibly mean that the Church can't formulate a complete answer and educate the infertile couples on what they can do to have an ethical IVF.

In order for the Church to formulate a complete answer regarding IVF, the Church needs to fully understand the procedure.  In my own experience as a non-scientist, I've found it difficult to figure out the truth of the matter because different physicians answer my questions differently...believe it or not, they are also influenced by ideologies, it's not "just the facts".  

Once the Church has "just the facts", however, it can begin to formulate an answer regarding whether or not IVF is ethical and in accordance with our theology.  Note, I didn't say the Church can formulate an answer "to educate infertile couples on what they can do to have an ethical IVF".  First, we need to determine whether or not it is ethical:

a) if it's not, it's out
b) if it is ethical, then we can move on from there
c) if it is currently unethical, but could become ethical subject to certain "improvements", that's another matter.  We'd have to see if IVF can make those ethical changes and still be effective.  

But in every case, the first thing the Church is responsible for is determining whether this procedure can be justified according to the convictions of our faith.  It's not about what the Church can do to help couples go through this procedure in an Orthodox way.  That's putting lipstick on an animal that could be a woman or a pig: we need to turn on the lights and see clearly what we're dealing with.  

Quote
Should we stop taking pain killers when we need them, just because people overdosed on them?
Should we stop going to Church just because some priest decided to sexual harass people?
Should we stop driving just because people got rich from selling cars at our expense?
Should I throw away my computer because it was built by small little Chinese children that are way underpaid?
Should we stop public schools from functioning Just because teachers are having sexual relationships with their students?

In all of the above, you are asking whether we should stop performing activities or using things of at least neutral (but also positive) moral value due to abuses that definitely have negative moral value.  You are presuming that IVF has neutral or positive moral value, but the Church/Jury is still out on this.  

Quote
Should the Church marry gay people just because they are now allowed by law to do so in a civil court?
Should the Church be ok with abortion just because doctors are allowed by law to perform them?
Should the Church be ok with premarital sexual relationship just because two people are deeply in love and allowed by law to fornicate?

You know the answer to these questions because you know what the Church definitely believes about these matters.  We haven't definitively come to a conclusion about IVF other than that there is reason for having reservations.  

Quote
I just don't think the answers received are enough to make me understand IVF is bad. So far, there's nothing I read that can suggest that.
But I read enough guilt trips and judgements. That I got enough of to make me sad.

Forgive me, but I think this is the reason why you are reading into the views of your "opponents" things that are not there, and this is why I suggested that infertile couples considering IVF really need to involve more than just their doctor in coming to a decision on whether to go forward.  Emotions, powerful as they are, don't always help.  

By all means, keep reading, talk to whomever you feel is competent to answer your questions about the science, etc., but be open to the Church and to the light our faith can shed on these questions.  Right now, I get the sense that you've made up your mind and are seeking justifications that are not as plentiful as you'd like.  All of us struggle with that from time to time with our important concerns.  That's why it's important to have some objectivity.  

Ultimately, whatever the Church or science have to say about something, every person will choose to do what they feel is right, and they will have to answer for those choices before God.  The added burden that infertile couples considering these reproductive technologies have is that they are also responsible before God for the children they may bring into existence, whether or not they survive long enough to be brought into the world after having developed fully.  
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« Reply #177 on: October 25, 2013, 08:43:23 PM »

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this.

Have you used the bathroom lately? Emptying out urine is not that part of your body's only function  Wink I think if you accept that God created humanity, then you have to accept that--for better or for worse--He gave us a real sexuality with real sexual organs. Unless of course the pre-Fall man lacked such a thing, but, that seems pretty silly if you ask me.
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You're really on to something here. Tattoo to keep you from masturbating, chew to keep you from fornicating... it's a whole new world where you outsource your crosses. You're like a Christian entrepreneur or something.
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« Reply #178 on: October 26, 2013, 09:49:35 PM »

I think if you accept that God created humanity, then you have to accept that--for better or for worse--He gave us a real sexuality with real sexual organs. Unless of course the pre-Fall man lacked such a thing, but, that seems pretty silly if you ask me.

Give this man a prize!
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« Reply #179 on: October 27, 2013, 02:59:26 AM »

No they don't. Being fruitful and multiplying doesn't mean "have sex", but is meant in a spiritual way. All The Fathers and many saints speak about this.

Have you used the bathroom lately? Emptying out urine is not that part of your body's only function  Wink I think if you accept that God created humanity, then you have to accept that--for better or for worse--He gave us a real sexuality with real sexual organs. Unless of course the pre-Fall man lacked such a thing, but, that seems pretty silly if you ask me.

What seems silly to me is when people believe that this spiritually fallen physical realm is what God intended, that our physiology is meant to function in a non-deified state. Yet, we believe that humanity and the universe was meant to function in direct communion with God through His Grace/Uncreated energies which are separate from creation. In other words, it's not just that our actions have become subject to evil through the fall, but that we lost our real ontology; without God's Grace, deification, man is not what he is meant to be. It's not very helpful to speculate how our organs would function in a deified state because we know that first and foremost we need God to personally restore us to that state and give us His own knowledge about Himself and us. So, firstly, we are required to repent and live an entirely new life in Christ as He taught and then we can talk about how stuff really works.
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« Reply #180 on: October 27, 2013, 10:01:24 AM »



hmmm
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« Reply #181 on: October 27, 2013, 01:11:57 PM »

What seems silly to me is when people believe that this spiritually fallen physical realm is what God intended...

If one describes the physical world as "spiritually fallen", one can only conclude that this was clearly not the will of God.  God created everything and declared it "good", even "very good". 

But it is precisely that "good", that "very good" world which God created "physical": stars, planets, skies, earth, waters, fish, birds, beasts, and yes, humans with genitals.

Quote
...that our physiology is meant to function in a non-deified state.

Quote
Luke 22

14 And when the hour came, he sat at table, and the apostles with him. 15 And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer; 16 for I tell you I shall not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” 17 And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves; 18 for I tell you that from now on I shall not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”
   
Quote
Luke 24

36 As they were saying this, Jesus himself stood among them. 37 But they were startled and frightened, and supposed that they saw a spirit. 38 And he said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do questionings rise in your hearts? 39 See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit has not flesh and bones as you see that I have.” 41 And while they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he took it and ate before them.

Quote
Yet, we believe that humanity and the universe was meant to function in direct communion with God through His Grace/Uncreated energies which are separate from creation. In other words, it's not just that our actions have become subject to evil through the fall, but that we lost our real ontology; without God's Grace, deification, man is not what he is meant to be. It's not very helpful to speculate how our organs would function in a deified state because we know that first and foremost we need God to personally restore us to that state and give us His own knowledge about Himself and us. So, firstly, we are required to repent and live an entirely new life in Christ as He taught and then we can talk about how stuff really works.

While affirming that it's not helpful to speculate on the deified state of human physiology, people who think/believe in this way go toward another extreme: they feel free to speculate on just how fallen human physiology is, seeking to separate it from God's creation.  Why make our problem God's problem? 

Even after humanity suffered the Fall, God did not declare the things and people he made "bad" or "very bad", undoing his declarations in Gn 1.  Sickness and death entered the world through sin, but they do not change the fundamental goodness of man as God created him, because he is created, male and female, in the image and likeness of God (i.e., Christ).  Not only do we come to understand what "image" and "likeness" mean in light of Christ, but we also understand what "male" and "female" (i.e., sexes, with all their physical, mental, emotional, psychological, spiritual differences and complementarities) mean through him.     

I can agree with everything you said about the need for repentance, divine grace, etc., but I cannot agree with the spiritualising tendency that strips humanity of humanity in order to become like God.  It's anti-incarnational and a form of spiritual fornication. 
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« Reply #182 on: October 27, 2013, 11:13:13 PM »

What seems silly to me is when people believe that this spiritually fallen physical realm is what God intended...

If one describes the physical world as "spiritually fallen", one can only conclude that this was clearly not the will of God.  God created everything and declared it "good", even "very good". 

But it is precisely that "good", that "very good" world which God created "physical": stars, planets, skies, earth, waters, fish, birds, beasts, and yes, humans with genitals.

Quote
...that our physiology is meant to function in a non-deified state.

Quote
Luke 22

14 And when the hour came, he sat at table, and the apostles with him. 15 And he said to them, “I have earnestly desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer; 16 for I tell you I shall not eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.” 17 And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he said, “Take this, and divide it among yourselves; 18 for I tell you that from now on I shall not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”
   
Quote
Luke 24

36 As they were saying this, Jesus himself stood among them. 37 But they were startled and frightened, and supposed that they saw a spirit. 38 And he said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do questionings rise in your hearts? 39 See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; handle me, and see; for a spirit has not flesh and bones as you see that I have.” 41 And while they still disbelieved for joy, and wondered, he said to them, “Have you anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he took it and ate before them.

Quote
Yet, we believe that humanity and the universe was meant to function in direct communion with God through His Grace/Uncreated energies which are separate from creation. In other words, it's not just that our actions have become subject to evil through the fall, but that we lost our real ontology; without God's Grace, deification, man is not what he is meant to be. It's not very helpful to speculate how our organs would function in a deified state because we know that first and foremost we need God to personally restore us to that state and give us His own knowledge about Himself and us. So, firstly, we are required to repent and live an entirely new life in Christ as He taught and then we can talk about how stuff really works.

While affirming that it's not helpful to speculate on the deified state of human physiology, people who think/believe in this way go toward another extreme: they feel free to speculate on just how fallen human physiology is, seeking to separate it from God's creation.  Why make our problem God's problem? 

Even after humanity suffered the Fall, God did not declare the things and people he made "bad" or "very bad", undoing his declarations in Gn 1.  Sickness and death entered the world through sin, but they do not change the fundamental goodness of man as God created him, because he is created, male and female, in the image and likeness of God (i.e., Christ).  Not only do we come to understand what "image" and "likeness" mean in light of Christ, but we also understand what "male" and "female" (i.e., sexes, with all their physical, mental, emotional, psychological, spiritual differences and complementarities) mean through him.     

I can agree with everything you said about the need for repentance, divine grace, etc., but I cannot agree with the spiritualising tendency that strips humanity of humanity in order to become like God.  It's anti-incarnational and a form of spiritual fornication. 

This is painful... I did not say the physical is wrong, but the physical without the spiritual, without God's Grace is not the true physical, but a fallen one, a dead one. Sorry, no energy for the other part of your post.
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« Reply #183 on: November 07, 2013, 11:33:38 AM »

I had to come back to this thread, as I am slowly coming to terms with what IVF "really" means and what the Church thinks about it.

I've realized Christians know so little about it, and blinded by the desire to have a child are willing to accept any methods that will give them that. They will then come to defend this procedures and proclaim them to be "the work of God" when they are clearly not.

My turning point was when one of the people posting on another forum said "Jesus was the first IVF child. God put sperm in Mary's eggs and created Jesus". Other people agreed or found it funny. I didn't. I've realized not only how little Christians know about IVF, but how Christians don't know anything about Christ Himself.

I decided to trust the Church on this matter.

Forgive me for being aggressive in my previous posts.
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« Reply #184 on: November 07, 2013, 11:35:42 AM »



You weren't aggressive.  You were searching for the truth.

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« Reply #185 on: November 07, 2013, 12:09:20 PM »

I've come to realize that issues such as IVF are not so apparent immediately and most of us don't see the depth of things. So, no need to feel bad about it because it's hard stuff, but at the same time it's probably safer to not jump to conclusions or actions we don't fully understand.
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« Reply #186 on: November 07, 2013, 12:16:49 PM »

I've realized Christians know so little about it, and blinded by the desire to have a child are willing to accept any methods that will give them that. They will then come to defend this procedures and proclaim them to be "the work of God" when they are clearly not.

No biggie. Because really, this is what we all do when it comes to our own sins, wants and desires. We are blinded by the desire to do whatever, and often it can be what appears to be good or at least morally neutral. Then we rationalize so that we can have/do what we want.
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« Reply #187 on: November 07, 2013, 01:02:10 PM »

I've come to realize that issues such as IVF are not so apparent immediately and most of us don't see the depth of things. So, no need to feel bad about it because it's hard stuff, but at the same time it's probably safer to not jump to conclusions or actions we don't fully understand.

+1
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