Health Care and Faith Diversity

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Carie Wright
February 16, 2013
HLT-310V
Health Care Provider and Faith Diversity- Final Draft

Introduction
In healthcare, we come across all kinds of people. They all have different needs and wants. We become accustomed to the population that we see. Each of our hospitals has a majority. We know, in general, what the majority of our patients need in regards to spiritual and cultural care. Every once in a while though, we come across something new and different, something that falls outside of our everyday practice. When that happens, we have to adjust our way of thinking and learn new things in order to care for this patient and their family effectively and with great care. This paper will explore the differences between the Christian view of health care and healing as opposed to the Buddhist, Native American, and Hindu religions. Christian

Christians believe in God. They believe that the power of prayer can help heal. They turn to prayer and church when people are sick and injured, and rely on God to help heal. They turn to doctors and hospitals, but it is accompanied by faith and prayer. They pray for help, but do not know what help will be given or how it will be presented. They have faith that God has a plan and knows what he is doing. Acts 3:16 says “By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see” (Bible,NIV). For Christians, as long as they believe in God and ask for his help, he will help. This is what we, in Western medicine, see most often. Our job and training is based around this basic premise that the Christian person who comes in requiring care will accept our Western medicine and will add prayer and family to the equation. Hinduism, Buddhism, and Native American culture are very different. They have different views on the meaning of life, and the treatments and therapies that they accept as being useful. This paper will explore the differences that exist between Christianity and the three other religions specified. Hinduism

Hinduism is one of the oldest living religious traditions of the world. Hinduism has no one founder or teacher, and is a compilation of many different teachings and books. They believe in reincarnation, karma, moksha, dharma, and artha. Hindus believe that one death is just a rebirth into a new life while trying to reach Brahman. “From this belief follows a corollary belief in multiple lifetimes of existence in the past and the future, lifetimes in which the quality of one’s present life is determined by the quality of one’s past life as led in previous lifetimes (karma). It is thus possible to improve the quality of one’s life over several lives and attain a better rebirth, but the ultimate Hindu religious ideal aims at transcending the process of the cycle of rebirths itself. The successful attainment of this goal is called moksa” (Sharma, 2002). Christians, in relation, view death in two ways, death of the body and death of the soul. The body is of less importance, because it is the soul that has to meet with God on Judgment day and must prove its worthiness of being accepted into the gates of heaven. Hindus are extremely modest, and modesty is increased when the care provider is of the opposite gender. They generally eat a vegetarian diet, and will fast quite often. They are very respectful of medical personnel, but they are very hesitant to take drugs, and consent to surgery. It is very important that we explore other alternatives and educate, educate, educate. Buddhism

In contrast “Buddhism goes beyond religion and is more of a philosophy or 'way of life'. It is a philosophy because philosophy 'means love of wisdom' and the Buddhist path can be summed up as: (1) to lead a moral life, (2) to be mindful and aware of thoughts and actions, and (3) to develop wisdom and understanding” (White, 1993). “The Buddhist approach to health and...
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