Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Blood donor? I don't think so!

A dreamy afternoon ... - by Anne VisI've always loved books on magical realism. The Belgian writer Hubert Lampo was one of my favorites.
The magical connection is something that is just impossible to resist and it is what keeps life interesting.
This past week I discovered what I believe is a new generation of magical realism.
I read a book by Cecilia Ahern called
Thanks for the memories.
A woman has strange memories after a blood transfusion.
It is long known that for instance someone who is vegetarian can suddenly have a craving for burgers after a heart
transplant, if the donor happened to be a burger fan. But is the same true for blood transfusions? And would it be as intense as having the exact same experiences as the donor in any given moment in time? In theory this could be true, I don't know if there is research on this topic. Blood cells live shorter than most other cells in the body, but could it be that the information gets stored somehow in the body?
I find it fascinating too that the cellular memory can have a larger impact than the memory we think originates from the brain. Where does that leave the neuroscientists who have found that by activating a certain spot in the brain they can evoke a particular memory?

And say the information from the donor blood cell gets stored in the body. Would it be possible that the receiver gets a certain talent that they did not have before? Could it work positively in a way other than just prolong the life? (or shorten it if you happen to get hepatitis C ...)

From a spiritual point of view organ transplants and blood transfusions call for a lot of questions. Both for the donor and the receiver.
For the donor:

  • Do they have to "hang around" until the receiver finally dies?

  • Do donor and receiver now share control over the karmic issues, extending into afterlife or next life?

For the receiver:

  • What to do with the extra karmic burden of another individual?

  • Does it create an obligation for future pay-back and complicated karmic ramifications?

  • Does it disturb the life plan as the individual may now be carrying out somebody else's agenda?

Personally I do not choose to be a blood donor/receiver nor do I want to receive nor give organs if the situation may arise. I think life is already complicated enough as it is.

Our government wants us to clearly state whether we want to be organ donors or not. Donating organs would prolong people's lives with current medical expertise. No questions asked about the consequences.

From an empathic viewpoint it is always hard to see someone suffer who could be helped with a donor organ. And yet most people find it hard to be donor or have their loved ones be ripped apart after their death. Also somehow in this society people think they are better off to receive an organ, but are not willing to be a donor. Plain selfish or is there more to it?

In situations of life and death choices can be difficult, as we also see in the discussions on euthanasia. I have not seen these discussions on blood transfusions, and I think they should be held as well. The implications can be very far reaching.


Anonymous said...

That must have been interesting reading.

Anonymous said...

A subject I have long had a fascination for - the idea that memories or personalities can be transferred with an organ. There are numerous anecdotes about it. As a writer it is great fuel for the imagination! I would still be a donor though as I feel that if I help save someone's life - then I was meant to do it. Perhaps I am paying back some karmic debt by doing so?

Sandy said...

hmmm food for thought here.