OCR GCSE: Philosophy and Ethics

In Years 10 and 11 all students study a short course in GCSE:  Philosophy and Ethics.  Four modules are studied, three to be examined, and one the topic of a piece of course work of approximately 1500 words.

Year 11 students:  with GCSE rapidly approaching, you are strongly advised to revise, and test yourself, on www.bbc.co.uk/revision and on http://re-xs.ucsm.ac.uk/

Biblical quotations are attached to each topic below; choose two or three to learn to support each point you make.


 

1.  Religion and Science
 

Christian ideas about the origins of the world and of humanity
Scientific ideas about the origins of the world and of humanity: 
The Big Bang Theory and Darwin's Theory of Evolution
Christian views about what sets people apart from animals
Christian ideas about stewardship
Christian responses to environmental issues 

 


 

 

   

2.  Religion and Human Relationships
     The roles of men and women within a Christian family
     Christian marriage ceremonies, and the ways in which these reflect and
             emphasise Christian teaching about marriage
     Christian beliefs about the ethics of divorce
     Christian beliefs about sexual relationships and contraception


 

 

 

3.  Religion and Medical Ethics
         Different Christian attitudes towards abortion
         Christian responses to issues raised by fertility treatment
         Christian attitudes towards euthanasia and suicide
         Christian beliefs about the use of animals in medical research

 

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Coursework:  Religion, Poverty and Wealth
(a) Describe Christian teachings about the way in which believers
      should treat people who are less fortunate than themselves
(b) Explain how Christians put these ideas into practice
(c) 'We should help people who are the same religion as we are but
      we need not bother about other people'.
     
Do you agree?  Give reasons to support your answer and show that you have
      thought about different points of view.  You must refer to Christianity in your answer.

 

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(An excellent resource for newspaper articles on topical issues is www.learn.co.uk/topical/  (If an issue has been in the news, look there!)

1.  Religion and Science
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(a) Christian ideas about the origin of the world and of humanity
                     
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
                      And the earth was without form
                         Genesis 1: 1-2

                             And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
                      And God saw the light, that it was good
                      Genesis 1: 3-4

                           
And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind
                     Genesis 1:24

                             And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and
                      breathed into his nostrils

                     
Genesis 2:7

                             And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and
                      breathed into his nostrils

                     
Genesis 2:7
                     

                       And [from] the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he
                       a woman

                      
Genesis 2:22


(b) Christian views about what sets people apart from animals
                     
And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and
                      breathed into his nostrils

                      Genesis 2:7

(c)  Christian ideas about stewardship
                      
And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to
                       dress it and to keep it.
                      
Genesis 2: 15
                              

                               And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply...and
                       have dominion over...every living thing
                      
Genesis 1: 28

                               The earth is the LORD's, and the fulness thereof
                       Psalm 24:1

                       Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.
                       Luke 12:22


(d) Christian responses to environmental issues
                       
www.christian-aid.org.uk/campaign/trade/aimsdtl.htm
                                www.earthrights.org.uk/links.html
                        www.fish.co.uk/campaign/more/earth_summit2002c.html
                                www.cafod.org.uk/spirituality/fiaenvironment.shtml
 

(e) Scientific idea about the origin of the world
                       
The Big Bang
                       
time, energy and space came into being
                        hydrogen and helium were the only two chemicals produced
                        other chemicals, needed for life, came from inside stars
                        the origin of the universe was about 12.5 billion years ago
                        the earth is approx. 4.5 billion years old
                       
The Theory of Evolution
                        Different species have developed gradually, adapting to the environment
                        Natural Selection:  the strongest plants and animals survive

                        Human beings evolved from a common ape-like ancestor


Remember:  many Christians believe in both the Big Bang and in Genesis as a myth with a meaning!

Library books:  576.8: evolution and Darwin; 577: ecology
See www. links below.

2.  Religion and Human Relationships
___________________________________________________________________________________
(a) The roles of men and women within a Christian family

                         It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
                        
Genesis 2: 19

                                 He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favour from the LORD
                                 Proverbs 18: 22

                                  Wives, in the same way be submissive to your husbands
                        
 1 Peter 3: 1
          
                                  
There is neither . . . male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus
                        
  Galatians 3: 27

                                   The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise
                          also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.
                          1 Corinthians 7:4

                                  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church
                          Ephesians 5: 24

                                  Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God
                          1 John 4:7

                         Honour thy father and thy mother
                         Exodus 20:11

                         But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he
                         hath denied the faith
                         1 Timothy 5:8

                         Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.
                         Colossians 3:20

(b) Christian Marriage Ceremonies:

Purpose      
Procreation - having children
Union - a loving partnership of living together
Rearing children - providing nurture & security
Pattern for society - family unit of mutual support
One flesh - sexual intimacy
Sacred - blessed by God
Eternal - lifelong faithful relationship

(from http://re-xs.ucsm.ac.uk/gcsere/revision/xtianpers/chper1/page3.html)
 

Vows:               I, John, take you, Mary, to be my wife,
                         to have and to hold from this day forward
                         for better, for worse,
                         for richer, for poorer,
                         in sickness and in health,
                         to love and to cherish
                         till death us do part,
                         according to God's holy law
                         and this is my solemn vow."

                        What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder
                        Mark 10:9


(c) Christian beliefs about the ethics of divorce

                        
I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness,
                         and marries another woman commits adultery
                         Matthew 19: 9

(d) Christian beliefs about sexual relationships
                       
But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.
                        1 Corinthians 7: 35

                        He that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.
                        1 Corinthians 6: 17

(e) Christian beliefs about contraception
                        The Church of England supports responsible family planning.
                       
Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself
                        Mark 12:31
                       
                       
Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit which is in you
                        1 Corinthians 6:19

                        The Roman Catholic Church teaches that when a sperm fertilises an ovum
                        (egg) the result is a being with full human rights.  All artificial forms of contraception
                        are not, therefore, allowed.
                       
Before I formed thee in the womb I knew thee
                        Jeremiah 1:4

                        Thou shalt not kill
                        Exodus 20


Library books:  303: social change; 305.4: women; 306: sexual orientation
See www. links below.

 

3.  Religion and Medical Ethics                    

 (a) Christian attitudes to abortion and to issues raised by fertility treatment
                     
  Before I formed thee in the womb I knew thee
                        Jeremiah 1:4

                        Thou shalt not kill
                        Exodus 20:13

                        To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
                        A time to be born, and a time to die;
                        Ecclesiastes 3:1

                        For he loved Hannah: but the LORD had shut up her womb
                        1 Samuel 1:2

                        Whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them
                        Matthew 7:12

(b)  Christian attitudes towards euthanasia and suicide
                      
Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself
                        Mark 12:31

                        Thou shalt not kill
                        Exodus 20:13

                        To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
                        A time to be born, and a time to die;
                        Ecclesiastes 3:1
                       

                        All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them
                        came to be
                        Psalm 139:16

(c)  Christian beliefs about the use of animals in medical research
      
Animal research was used in the discovery of vitamins, understanding how embryos develop, the development of
       anaesthetics and the treatment of diabetes.  Tests on animals have helped to produce a vaccine for polio, drugs for the
       treatment of asthma and the survival of premature babies. 
The case of deliberately causing cancer in animals, however,
       the oncomouse, raises many concerns:  should we create a living being deliberately to suffer pain and an early death, and
       should such pain and suffering earn profit for companies.

                     
And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and
                      breathed into his nostrils

                     
Genesis 2:7

                      And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply...and
                      have dominion over...every living thing
                      Genesis 1: 28

                              The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.
                              Genesis 2:15


                              The Church recognises the need for animals to...receive careful and sympathetic treatment,
                       both during their lives and in the manner of their dying.
                       What the Churches Say, CEM

Library books:  174: genetic engineering; 179: euthanasia; 610: medical ethics
See www. links below.

LINKS

Religion and Science

http://www.religioustolerance.org/amish.htm (for the Amish)

http://www-personal.umich.edu/~bpl/mennocon.html#amish (Amish)

http://www.edenproject.com  (a global garden -- stewardship of the land)

http://www.greenpeace.org  (Greenpeace)

http://foe.co.uk  (Friends of the Earth)

http://www.ciwf.co.uk/  (Compassion in World Farming)

http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~reep/  (RE and Environment Programme)

http://hindunet.org/vegetarian/  (vegetarian and animal rights)

http://www.globaleye.org.uk  (young people's site)

http://www.parliament.uk/  (the Parliamentary Site)

http://www.thecampaign.org (campaign to label GM foods)

http://www.infidels.org/library  (Richard Dawkins, a most exciting thinker, an atheist with wonder.  A highly recommended site)

http://csis.org.uk/Articles  (Richard Dawkins)

http://library.thinkquest.org/C004367/home.shtml (would a monkey at a keyboard eventually type Shakespeare?!)

http://www.erols.com/zenithco/index.html  (for Islam and science)

2.   Religion and Medical Ethics

http://www.cmf.org.uk  articles from the Christian Medical Fellowship

http://www.ethicsforschools.org

http://www.religioustolerance.org/euthanas.htm (euthanasia)

http://www.euthanasia.org/ (pro-euthanasia)

http://ballinger.xray.ufl.edu/euthanas/index.html (anti-euthanasia)

http://www.nvve.nl/english (Death on Request took place in Holland)

http://www.hospiceatmuskogee.org/ (hospice)

http://www.hli.org/ (Human Life International)

http://humancloning.org (possibility of human cloning)

http://newscientist.com/nsplus/insight/clone/clone.html (cloning)

http://caninecryobank.com (pet cloning)

3.  Religion and Human Relationships
See links on Christianity page. 

http://www.divorce.co.uk  (general information)

http://www.citfou.or.uk (The Human Rights Act)

http://dep.org.uk/globalexpress (human rights)

http://www.yourturn.net (an interactive site showing you how to make real changes in your community and country)
 

4.  Religion, Poverty and Wealth

http://www.fairtrade.org.uk (incl. chocolate that has not involved child slavery)

http://unicef.org (UNICEF for children in the third and fourth worlds)

http://charitynet.org/  (a site that encourages people to give to charity)

General Sites

http://www.bbc.co.uk/education/humanrights  (an excellent site)

http://www.bbc.co.uk/revision/RE

http://re-xs.ucsm.ac.uk/

http://www.cofe.anglican.org/view/index.html

http://www.religiousstudies.co.uk  (for help with essays, general tests and links)

http://www.christusrex.org.uk

http://humanism.org.uk

http://www.number-10.gov.uk/default.asp?pageid=8 (ask questions of a minister)