Friday, October 19, 2012

"Brain Dead" Ain't Dead

Another story debunking a popular pseudo-scientific myth — Film on teen who awoke from coma before having organs harvested stirs 'brain death' debate.

A four-year-old post of mine noting that "Vatican City state does not use certification of brain death... because this would tend to equate the human person with brain function" and that — Hearts and Lungs, Not Brains. Also noted was the fact that "[f]orty years ago a committee of the Harvard Medical School published a report recommending the adoption of brain death as the criterion for declaring a person dead," which in effect "meant the cessation of heart and lung function were no longer the only criteria for declaring someone dead." Further, I commented:
    It is interesting that traditionally, both East and West, breath has been synonymous with spirit, as evidenced by the importance of breathing in Indic religions or the Greek word πνεύμα. And the heart has traditionally been seen as the seat of emotion and even consciousness, as evidenced by the ideogram 心 which can refer to both the organ and to the concept of mind.

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