Voluntary Euthanasia: an unfamiliar pilgrimage

Voluntary Euthanasia: an unfamiliar pilgrimage

The Rev. Sande Ramage

26 May 2014

 

When I have been expected all my adult life to take responsibility for myself, it seems like the ultimate betrayal of a society, a glaring lack of compassion to be unable to make a choice about how my life ends.
 
The call for voluntary euthanasia, for people to make their own end of life choices is more than winning or losing a fight about a piece of legislation.
 
This is one of New Zealand's significant spiritual pilgrimages where we have to learn to listen deeply to each other. To listen to our motives, our intentions and our fears as we learn to develop our ultimate values.
 
These values will contribute to the core of what will sustain us as we move into a new phase of spirituality that has no central immovable line but must be fluid and flexible to accommodate diverse perspectives on what makes meaning.
 
This journey will stir up our unconscious, what lies deep within and between us. It will be painful, for we have to move past thinking that keeps us imprisoned by fears into a developing stream of consciousness, grounded in gratitude and compassion where the dignity of all people is paramount, even if the choices made by some are not what we might make.
 
Instead, it's like a pilgrimage, a slow, painful journey with blisters, walking alongside people you'd rather not know and wish would shut up.
 
But the point of a pilgrimage is not really the physical, the walking, the losing weight, or learning to sleep in horrid pilgrim hostels with dozens of people who snore. Rather, it's about deepening our human understanding of life beyond the superficial. Being open to hearing the heartbeat that throbs beyond our own.
 
Read the whole story by downloading my presentation made to the Voluntary Euthanasia Society in Wellington. Voluntary Euthanasia an unfamiliar pilgrimage