Different Religious ViewsEmbryo and Religion

Every person, and therefore every patient, has their own views and beliefs, whether secular or religious. Clinicians interact with people at times of stress and personal turmoil when these beliefs are overtly expressed, relied upon and tested. A knowledge of the major religions positions regarding the embryo is therefore important, particularly for the doctor-patient relationship.


It is not possible to give a consensus position of each major religion as such positions do not exist. Each religion has ardent proponents of views across the spectrum from liberal to conservative. Some interpretations are more widely accepted and adhered to than others and there are authorities who’s opinions are closely followed by many.

Why should medical students know about religion?

Practicing medicine brings us in to contact many different people with countless different beliefs and customs.  The better the doctor can communicate with, and understand, the patient the better the outcome. This does not mean the doctor needs to be an expert in every culture and religion. Basic understanding of the prevailing views of various cultural and religious groups can greatly facilitate doctor patient interactions.

When will it be useful?

Every time you meet a new patient you will need to develop a rapport with them. An appreciation as to their culture and values will help you achieve a better, quicker, rapport.

  • Faith by Numbers, statistical information about religious adherence at worldwide, national and local level.