Destiny and Project: Abortion beyond the Womb

May 17, 2008

“Man is both destiny and a project.” The field of taxonomy demonstrates the multifariousness of living beings. Amid such variety, however, one thing is for certain: a life is either living or deceased. The latter is described by inanimateness that, while capable of bringing merits to others as in fertilization and research, signifies a total end of itself. The living, on the other hand, is marked by a massive horizon of possibilities. How this matters in the case of abortion is to give right measure to the weight of the death in the womb. More than being the demise of a growing human child, abortion marks the total annihilation of possibilities in reality.

What is being referred to here as “reality” is not a complete encompassment of all that exist. Celestial bodies greatly distant from us, for instance, are not of the present concern. The reality that is spoken of here is the daily life that is experienced by humanity, from something as simple as sleeping to something as grand as a social revolution, and even something outside of its volition such as the movements of the weather. So long as it is either directly affects or is experienced by humanity, such entities constitute reality being meant here. The significance of this distinction is that life here will also be meant in such a fashion. And with those presently exclaimed, the nature of reality as dynamic and ever-flowing, ungraspable by any one conceivable framework, will also be assumed with the matters of life. In short, life is reality.

The states of the living and the deceased are two constants of life. It has been mentioned in the first statement of the discussion that man is a “destiny.” Whether a man is either living or deceased is what is meant with that part of the statement. The field of science says much on this thought. The living state, it would define, is the animation of a living being as indicated by the functioning of vital components, such as internal organs, maneuverability, and external factors such as the environment, which are necessary to sustain life. Other elements, such as the place and time of birth and the sociocultural circumstances in which one is conceived, are also considered, as one cannot choose where he is born. The deceased is marked by a total absence of those. So long as this delineation is concerned in relation to the “destiny” being discussed, it is a completely correct and incontestable fact.

Life, however, cannot be meant solely as this. The words chosen here to distinguish between “alive” and “dead” are “living” and “deceased,” as underlying such choice of words is the attempt to give true justice to life. Linguistics dictates “living” and “deceased” as verbs, words of action. The former signify progression while the latter signify a terminus to action. While the recent discussion on life as a “destiny” is contained therein, it does not completely encompass for what the two words are meant - man as “project” is what fills this gap. The action and fluidity between the two points of life and death are what is meant here. Included in the “project” is the culmination of actions done by the person and experiences with which he is enriched. The man’s own “project” is one that he defines. This is something that the hard sciences, or any field of study for that matter, cannot define.

The present case against abortion is founded on the recent discussion. Firstly, the child in the womb is also subject to the binary differentiation between the “living” and the “deceased” states. It, typically, is in the living state for as long as it is sustained by its mother’s body and the mother herself providing the sustenance required for growth. For it to attain a “deceased” state, the beneficial factors on which it relies must be rendered insufficient and detrimental as to cause the eventual death of the growing child. Such is the case with miscarriage due to factors suddenly introduced to the embryo from the outside or due to inadequate sustenance of the mother despite her best efforts. The “destiny” component in this situation is marked by a premature death of the child beyond human control and sufficiency. It is otherwise obfuscated, however, in abortion. The child’s “destiny” is seized by human control, its termination headed by human forces from outside. The embryo can no longer be regarded as being between “living” or “deceased.” Instead, it is merely only “alive” and became “dead” - the child never experienced reality, as it never experienced living at all.

The magnitude of this reaches its highest in the component of the “project.” Every human child growing within the womb has not yet a chance to bring upon an impact on either himself or reality. Even less so does it receive experience beyond the womb where “living,” in all of its factors, harsh or beautiful, truly begins. And with such knowledge and experience, he is able to effect, with himself, the present reality. One need not look further than the the inexhaustible breadth of life as it is today, defined by choice and possibilities. The great pioneers of humanity, such as Albert Einstein and Martin Luther King Jr., have affected reality in part of their own humanity. Such capability to deal such an impact is inherent upon all members of the human race, a capability completely annihilated in abortion when the growing child has not been at all, first and foremost, able to decide for himself as it is terminated within the womb. Without a “project,” it is merely confined to a “destiny” - disposal.

The experience of daily life served to be source on which the statement that “man is both a destiny and a project” is founded. Humanity itself has proven to be those and beyond, to mean for itself what it chooses. Such is a beauty that has marked human life - such is a beauty violently deprived in the termination of a child. In the discussion, the word “meant” supersedes the word “defined.” This is because the word “define” is, essentially, to put a hard limit on a given entity, while “meant” is to provide a set of denotations and connotations that is subject to change. “Meant,” therefore, is more attuned to the living and the deceased, of action and animation, while “defined” is more associated simply to the alive and dead, of what is and what is not. To abort a child is to isolate it to the latter, to strip it from life, to make its mark upon the world as the canvas of its project, rooted in the destiny in which it was born.

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