Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Conception of Life

Five-year-old Andra questioned her mother: “Mom, why did you tell the neighbor lady that baby brother Yogy looks like Pap? Pap, wasn’t even here when Yogy was born. He was on a trip to Bukit Tinggi. Remember?”

Obviously Andra was not yet acquainted with the facts of life. The actual beginning of a human life dates back nine months before birth to the occasion when the father and mother shared in making available the sex cells which, as they combined, provided the biological elements from which a new human life is formed.

In terms of the inherited traits parents pass on their children, the father’s influence is as great as the mother’s; each parent has contributed one sex cell from which the entire body of the child develops. From conception onward to the time of birth the mother’s relationship to the child is more important than that of the father, for it is within her body that the child develops. But in terms of parenthood, embracing the responsibility for bringing the child into existence, a child’s father and mother are involved equally.

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