Power in the Blood: When Religion and Medicine Meet in Your Veins

Blood is powerful, but it can also be dangerous.

Episode 209: Power in the Blood: When Religion and Medicine Meet in Your Veins by Distillations Podcast

Everyone knows blood is powerful. The ancient Greeks realized it, Jesus understood it, Dracula certainly recognized it, and your doctor still knows it today. And everybody knows, says hematologist and historian of medicine Jacalyn Duffin, that if we lose a lot of blood, we’re going to die.

Jehovah’s Witnesses’ beliefs have led them to refuse blood transfusions—to the consternation of many inside the medical profession. But the religious group still wants medical care, says reporter Alex Ashley, and their advocacy has helped propel a new movement in medicine in which doctors perform surgeries without transfusing blood. Remarkably, it has turned out better for everyone, suggesting that religion and medicine might be less at odds than they sometimes seem.

Show Clock

00:04 Intro
01:35 Feature: When a Pint of Sweat Saves a Gallon of Blood
14:04 Blood is powerful
17:25 Blood is religious
18:40 Blood is a miracle
21:45 Blood is dangerous
24:35 Conclusion


Hosts: Michal Meyer and Bob Kenworthy
Guest: Jacalyn Duffin
Reporter: Alex Ashley
Producer: Mariel Carr
Associate Producer: Rigoberto Hernandez


Music courtesy of the Audio Network. “Power in the Blood” courtesy of Shiloh Worship Music.