play God

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play God

To have a huge affect on or great power over someone's life, livelihood, health, or happiness. Many of these investment bankers like the idea of playing God, having the power to make or break the lives of those whose finances they control. As a doctor, you have to detach yourself emotionally from your patients, or else you risk feeling like you're playing God with them.
See also: god, play

play God

COMMON If someone plays God, they behave as if they have the right to make the most important decisions, especially relating to the creation or ending of life. They accused the doctors of playing God, Note: This expression is used in a disapproving way.
See also: god, play

play God

behave as if all-powerful or supremely important.
See also: god, play

play ˈGod

behave as if you control events or other people’s lives: It is unfair to ask doctors to play God and end someone’s life.
See also: god, play
References in periodicals archive ?
The third meaning of playing God has to do with "the use of science to alter life and influence human evolution" (Peters 1997: 11).
President's Commission on genetic engineering submitted its report in 1982, it noted that there was an objection from religious groups that scientists were playing God in their recombinant DNA (rDNA) research.
No one was playing God, but I believe that God guided what happened and the outcome.
Were we to conclude that playing God is wrong, then advanced biology does pose a threat and we might seek to limit research into what once were the mysteries of life.
Ten years ago, in his book Playing God in Yellowstone, Alston Chase took on two supposed shining lights in American life: the National Park Service and the environmental movement.
Justice is one thing, playing God is quite another.
He said: "It's gut wrenching - it really turns my stomach what the government's doing - its playing God.
Before long, Sands is Playing God, caught in a web of murder and mayhem as he falls for gangster's moll Angelina Jolie.
David is soon to be seen making his big-screen leading-man debut as a medic in Playing God.
The pope declares the "supreme" value of living out those last, painful weeks and days in order to block our taking control - or, in other words, to prevent us from playing God.
THOSE who suggest control of the information available to victims' relatives "are playing God with justice", a human rights group claimed.
Livingston chairman Bill Hunter said: "The so-called Super League are playing God with Scottish football.
And desperate Irish aid workers have been put in the heartbreaking position of playing God with limited resources.
When they start playing God with our industry, they've stepped too far.
It's a reaffirmation of their worth and self-being because they are basically playing God,'' Markman said.