Assisted Reproductive Technologies as a treatment for infertility

Fatwa ID: 02391

Answered by: Molana Muhammad Adnan

Question:

I am a PhD scholar and lecturer at GC University Lahore. My dissertation is "Assisted Reproductive Technologies as a treatment of Infertility in the Light of Islamic Shariah". Kindly guide me to all available published matter of your institution in this regard. Kindly inform about any work in this regard which contains details of juristic arguments because so far the resolutions given by the Academy contain only the conclusion not the arguments that leads to this conclusion.

Answer

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

The Council of the Islamic Fiqh Academy holding its third session, in Amman, Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, From 8 to 13 Safar 1407 H (11 to 16 October 1986), after having reviewed the studies on the subject of “Artificial insemination” and having listened to the experts and physicians, and after investigation, It became evident to the Council that there are seven (7) known methods, used nowadays, for artificial insemination:

The following is the verdict of the Majma` al-Fiqh al-Islami regarding the issue of artificial insemination:

“Firstly, the following five (5) methods are all Islamically forbidden and absolutely prohibited for its own sake or due to the consequences manifested in employing them of the lineage being confused and loss of motherhood and other Shariah prohibited matters. These methods are:

1. The fertilization taking place between the sperm taken from the husband and the eggs taken from a woman who is not his wife, and then the fertilized ovum being implanted into the womb of his wife.

2. The fertilization taking place between the sperm taken from a man who is not the husband and the eggs taken from the wife, and then the fertilized ovum being implanted into the womb of the wife.

3. The fertilization taking place in-vitro between the sperm and the eggs taken from the spouses, and then the fertilized ovum being implanted into the womb of a volunteer woman (i.e. surrogate motherhood).

4. The fertilization taking place in-vitro between the sperm of a man and eggs of a woman who are both strangers to one another, and then the fertilized ovum being implanted into the womb of another man’s wife.

5. The fertilization taking place in-vitro between the sperm and the eggs taken from the spouses, and then the fertilized ovum is implanted into the womb of the husband’s other wife.

Secondly, there is no problem in resorting to the sixth or seventh method, in case of necessity, provided all required precautions are taken. These two methods are:

6. The sperm of the husband and the eggs of the wife are taken and fertilized in-vitro, and then the fertilized ovum is implanted into the womb of the wife.

7. Artificial insemination, by taking the sperm of the husband and inserting it in the appropriate place of his wife’s womb, for fertilization.” (Qararat wa tawsiyyat Majma` al-Fiqh al-Islami, P. 34-35)

We concur with the above fatwa given by the Council of the Islamic Fiqh Academy.

Imam Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (d.111) has stated that “The Shari’ah’s purposes of the creation are five: to preserve their religion, their souls, their mind, their offsprings and their money. So, everything that includes preserving these five principles is considered a maslaha (interest). And everything that result in failure of these principles is a harm that should be fought and tuned to an interest. The prohibition of failing or restraining these five principles has always been included in all religions and Shari’ah, as Shariha comes for the interest of humankind.”

Therefore Muslims believe that the purpose of the provisions of the legislation is to keep these five essentials. These essentials are indispensable in the interests of the religion and the world, so if they are lost so are the interests of the world. The world would be of corruption and all human destiny in the afterlife to manifest loss. The reason why these five essentials are called objectives is that all of the Shari’ah legal rulings are emerged and based upon them as will be shown in the coming examples.

The first 5 scenarios above which are impermissible, do not preserve lineage because a child can only have 1 of each gender as parents, the first 5 scenarios involve more than 1 of the 2 genders in each scenario. The 6th and 7th scenario refer to only 1 of each genders involvement.

In your thesis you may mention the link between the objectives of Sharia and preservation of lineage. There are Hudood punishments in place to deter adultery and adultery is in conflict with preservation of lineage, a woman must have a waiting period after divorce or if she is widowed so lineage can be prerserved, nikah is encouraged to encourage avoiding zina which, as said, is in conflict with preservation of lineage. Children born out of wedlock have no right in inheritance etc. From an objectives of sharia point of view there are many reasons and arguments as to why preservation of lineage is important and its importance has been widely stressed in Islam via many examples like the ones given above.

Only Allah Knows Best

Written by Molana Muhammad Adnan

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

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