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Matters of Life And Death

Religion & Spirituality Podcasts

In each episode of Matters of Life and Death, brought to you by Premier Unbelievable, John Wyatt and his son Tim discuss issues in healthcare, ethics, technology, science, faith and more. John is a doctor, professor of ethics, and writer and speaker on many of these topics, while Tim is a religion and social affairs journalist. We talk about how Christians can better engage with a particular question of life, death or something else in between. For more resources to help you explore faith and the big questions, visit: http://www.premierunbelievable.com If you want to go deeper into some of the topics we discuss, find more resources to read, listen to and watch at John’s website: http://www.johnwyatt.com

In each episode of Matters of Life and Death, brought to you by Premier Unbelievable, John Wyatt and his son Tim discuss issues in healthcare, ethics, technology, science, faith and more. John is a doctor, professor of ethics, and writer and speaker on many of these topics, while Tim is a religion and social affairs journalist. We talk about how Christians can better engage with a particular question of life, death or something else in between. For more resources to help you explore faith and the big questions, visit: http://www.premierunbelievable.com If you want to go deeper into some of the topics we discuss, find more resources to read, listen to and watch at John’s website: http://www.johnwyatt.com

Location:

United Kingdom

Description:

In each episode of Matters of Life and Death, brought to you by Premier Unbelievable, John Wyatt and his son Tim discuss issues in healthcare, ethics, technology, science, faith and more. John is a doctor, professor of ethics, and writer and speaker on many of these topics, while Tim is a religion and social affairs journalist. We talk about how Christians can better engage with a particular question of life, death or something else in between. For more resources to help you explore faith and the big questions, visit: http://www.premierunbelievable.com If you want to go deeper into some of the topics we discuss, find more resources to read, listen to and watch at John’s website: http://www.johnwyatt.com

Language:

English


Episodes

Relaunch: How we started, baby boomers and millennials, the pandemic as catalyst, and the signal to noise ratio

3/1/2022
To mark our arrival on the Premier network, we recap how Matters of Life and Death began and what we hope our intergenerational conversations might achieve. We then reflect on how the pandemic and its acceleration of digital technology has shaped so many of the issues we discuss, before briefly exploring three stories we will cover in future episodes (human enhancement, climate change nihilism, and end of life care). If you're new to the show, please do also scroll down the podcast feed to...

Duration:00:32:52

Coronavirus: The Omicron variant, mandatory vaccination, pandemic solidarity, and memories of authoritarianism

12/17/2021
The Omicron variant has in a few short weeks almost taken over the pandemic. This highly transmissible version of covid is raising afresh complicated ethical questions about vaccine distribution and international solidarity between nations. How can we ascertain what is the common good during global crises affecting different countries in different ways? Does Christianity lend any intellectual backing to those who demand the state refrain from telling them how to live during a pandemic? And...

Duration:00:35:18

Reproductive technologies: the ’Google baby’, Oliver O’Donovan, 14-day-old embryos, and techno-optimism

12/9/2021
This week we are resuming our conversation about infertility which begun in our previous episode. If you haven’t yet listened to that discussion, which focused on IVF, we’d recommend pausing this and going back to it as we will build on some of the ideas we explored last time. Today, we moved on to consider new ethical issues among other reproductive technologies. This is an area of medicine and science which is developing fast, sometimes faster than ethicists and regulators can keep up....

Duration:00:54:36

Infertility and IVF: Hidden wounds, premature quintuplets, embryo donation and the procreative-unitive bond

11/10/2021
Today we are delving into a complex and sensitive topic – infertility and IVF. The statistics suggest about one in seven couples will be unable to conceive without some kind of medical intervention, and the most popular form of reproductive treatment is in vitro fertilisation – IVF. Partly because infertility is such a painful time for many of those experiencing it, we don’t talk about it much. The same is also true of IVF, even though today in some places the procedure now accounts for as...

Duration:00:40:32

Assisted dying: The Meacher Bill, radicals in the Lords, Canada’s slippery slope and fragile conscience protections

10/8/2021
This week we’re digging into assisted dying. A bill to legalise it in England has been introduced to parliament – what does it propose and how likely is it to actually become law? And zooming out a little, what are the social factors behind this renewed push to introduce a form of euthanasia to Britain, and in particular via the House of Lords of all places? Finally, we discuss what we could learn from Canada – which has brought in its own form of assisted suicide, with some alarming...

Duration:00:38:44

Abusive leadership: Mark Driscoll, the hermeneutic of suspicion, Sigmund Freud’s chaise longue, and Paul-Timothy relationships

8/30/2021
Today’s episode is a little hard to sum up – we begin by reflecting on the recent series of scandals around abusive church leaders, before going to discuss how contemporary culture thinks about sex and power (and in particular how they are exploited) in human relationships. And then we consider to what extent Christians should become as suspicious of our leaders and their relationships, as it seems wider society is. The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill podcast (which we both strongly recommend)...

Duration:00:46:17

The Robot Will See You Now: Human uniqueness, AI musicians, surveillance capitalism and ditching Google

7/20/2021
This episode was inspired by John’s new book – The Robot Will See You Now – which was published last week. It’s a multi-author volume he has co-edited with the theologian Stephen Williams, where they have gathered an array of theologians, academics and thinkers to explore how upcoming advances in robotics and artificial intelligence will revolutionise society, from healthcare to employment, from art to sex. And, perhaps more critically, how we as Christians should engage with and respond to...

Duration:00:53:56

Coronavirus: Miscounting deaths, the Sun’s front page, key workers with long covid and vaccine generosity

5/26/2021
In today’s episode we’re returning to the coronavirus pandemic. It’s been almost six months since we last dedicated an episode to covid, and since then a lot has happened. Hundreds of millions of vaccine doses have been delivered around the world, but are they going to the right people at the right time? We now know the vaccines increase by a tiny amount the risk you might experience a dangerous blood clot in the brain – how have we done at understanding that risk and putting it in its...

Duration:00:56:27

John Stott: Double listening, salt as preservative, incarnational mission, and the challenge of evangelical hagiography

5/4/2021
Last week marked 100 years since the late John Stott was born and there has been a flurry of events to mark the centenary of this highly influential vicar, Bible teacher and evangelical leader. He also had a huge impact on John's own life and career and in this episode we wanted to talk about not just the legacy of Stott’s many decades of ministry, but whether his vision for how Christians can engage well in the public square is still relevant and meaningful today, more than 60 years after...

Duration:00:52:36

Simulation: Deep fakes, image as sacrament, David Beckham in Mandarin and therapy chatbots

3/15/2021
Today’s topic is simulation. We live in an era when digital technology is making it increasingly easy and cheap to create fake but compelling images or videos of people, or even entirely artificial human-like personalities. Machine learning tools and progress in artificial intelligence software means we are closer than ever to things previously only imaginable in science fiction: computer programs which can speak to us like a human or androids which are indistinguishable from real people. In...

Duration:00:51:45

Digital church: Worship on Zoom, pandemic revival, time-shifting and Gnosticism

2/24/2021
This episode explores one of the most significant and potentially long-lasting ways the covid pandemic has affected church life – the shift to digital. Ever since the first lockdown began almost a year ago, churches of every shape and size and from every denomination have been forced to offer worship online. And even though it has been legal to re-open buildings since last summer, most have continued to livestream, pre-record or video conference their way through the pandemic alongside some...

Duration:00:35:12

Social media and free speech: Fake news, Facebook’s ’Supreme Court’, the Capitol riot and YouTube algorithms

1/22/2021
In today’s episode we’re taking a sideways step from the covid pandemic and instead are discussing social media and free speech. The banning of Donald Trump from every social media platform following the deadly riot earlier this month at the US Capitol building has prompted fierce debates, not only about free speech and censorship online, but also the role of social media in fostering hate and lies. Why is it that so much horrendous stuff accumulates and spills out of social media, from...

Duration:00:36:24

Coronavirus: Misinformation

12/16/2020
Microchips. Bill Gates. The mark of the beast. 5G cell towers. False positive rates. Big pharma. DNA alteration. It’s been hard to avoid the swirling morass of misinformation and conspiracy theories around the pandemic. And this confusion and fear have surged in recent weeks as the first covid vaccines have begun to be rolled out. But why have so many people, including many in the church, fallen for untruths about coronavirus? Where has all our trust – in government, in science, even in...

Duration:00:37:13

Coronavirus: Vaccines - part 3

12/11/2020
The first coronavirus vaccine jabs have already gone into the arms of people here in the UK, as Britain this week became the first country in the world to actually deploy a vaccine which had completed all its clinical trials and been signed off by the regulator. But there remain lots of questions about the vaccine – how has it been made so fast, can we be sure it is safe, who should get it first, and can Christians be given it without compromising on their religious convictions? Listen to...

Duration:00:36:11

Coronavirus: The second lockdown

11/11/2020
The second coronavirus lockdown started here in the UK on 5 November and is due to last the rest of the month. Unlike the first time round in the spring, we aren’t going into this with our eyes closed – we know the lockdown will cause immense economic damage, as well as impacting mental and even physical health. Is this crude, blunt instrument really the best way to tackle the second wave of the covid pandemic? What does the Christian ethic have to say about how to balance the goods of...

Duration:00:44:01

Coronavirus: Vaccines - part 2

11/9/2020
We received a fascinating question from a listener after our last episode on vaccines, picking up on the competing and perhaps contradictory philosophies behind the anti-vax movement. So we decided to respond to their question and thoughts with a special bonus episode looking over this issue and other developments in coronavirus vaccines since. You will probably want to listen to the main episode on vaccines first here:...

Duration:00:19:17

Coronavirus: Vaccines - part 1

10/8/2020
There are about 40 different potential covid vaccines already being tested on humans, with almost a hundred more at earlier stages of development in the lab. The delivery of a vaccine is seen by many as the silver bullet which could end the pandemic for good. But they are more morally complex than we might at first assume. Join us as we sift through the ethical questions around clinical trials, testing vaccines on humans, how they can be most equitably distributed, and even what material...

Duration:01:17:17

Coronavirus: Mental health, anxiety and hope

9/10/2020
We’re back after a slightly longer than expected summer break with a new episode, all about our fears, anxieties and hopes amid the pandemic. People are afraid of the virus, and understandably so after months of the government stoking our anxiety to get us to stay at home while the media pumps grim death statistics into our screens on a daily basis. Is it healthy or wise to remain in this state of anxiety and fearfulness? How can we see God at work during times of mental health crisis and...

Duration:01:07:36

Coronavirus: Technology - part 2

6/24/2020
In the second part of our conversation on technology during the coronavirus pandemic, we look into our crystal balls and try to imagine what the world of tech will look like in the future, thanks to Covid-19. Are the major American tech companies are emerging from the crisis stronger than ever? Will coronavirus accelerate the rise of artificial intelligence and robotics in healthcare? And has the modernist pro-science movement struck a lasting blow in the battle of ideas against the...

Duration:00:49:07

Coronavirus: Technology - part 1

6/19/2020
One of the perhaps unexpected results of the coronavirus pandemic is how it has thrown up some fascinating debates about technology. Many countries, including the UK, have been grappling with if and how they could use Bluetooth apps to try and trace the spread of the virus. Around the world other nations have used the ubiquity of smartphones to quarantine and control potentially infected people, while poorer states have seen their efforts hindered by a critical lack of healthcare tech. In...

Duration:00:34:50