Abortion of handicap babies
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
i was looking throught the website when i came across a question posed about abortion.
to my understanding, as a humble young muslim woman, abortion is indeed a sin- because it is the murder of an innocent life.
but- as the lady who posed the question stressed- she feels she is unable to to care for the child and worries about the child being more or a burden than a joy.
thinking along those lines, what if a couple discovers that the child they are about to bear is handicapped, mentally or physically? there is definately no harm in bearing the child, as many couples have children who are down-syndrome or even blind and deaf, for example.
but what if the couple realises that they will not be able to carry the burden of taking care of the child? what if they are not able to bear the financial or emotional burden of looking after the child? are they then supposed to give birth to the child?
i can`t disagree that abortion is the best resort. but then again- islam is a religion that is extremely flexible. we have to consider each and every case as a seperate case, and not pass an instantanious judgement on it just because it `seems` haraam.
i would appreciate a reply.
thank you, brother burhan, for your time.
(There may be some grammatical and spelling errors in the above statement. The forum does not change anything from questions, comments and statements received from our readers for circulation in confidentiality.)
Abortion of handicap babies
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Your Question: but what if the
couple realises that they will not be able to carry
the burden of taking care of the child? what if they
are not able to bear the financial or emotional burden of looking after the
child? are they then supposed to give birth to the
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 6 Surah Anaam verse 151 (part):You should not kill your children for fear of poverty; for We provide sustenance for you and will provide sustenance for them also.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 17 Surah Israa verse 31:Do not kill your children for fear of want; for it is We Who provide for them, and for you as well. Indeed, their killing is a heinous crime!
If a couple under proper medical advice are absolutely convinced that all their future children will be born with a fatal or incurable disease (eg. Aids, handicap, etc.); there is absolutely no harm if they practice birth control.
But once the baby is conceived in the womb of the mother, no matter how handicapped or retarded the doctors fear the baby would be, it would be absolutely forbidden in Islam to have an abortion! The only situation where abortion would be a legal option is when one has to chose between saving the life of the mother or the life of the un-born baby in a complication; in such cases the life of the mother will be preferred to the birth of the un-born baby.
It would be considered a grave sin and crime in the sight of Allah Subhanah if one aborted a conceived baby in the womb of the mother, just because the baby was diagnosed with a handicap. To keep the situation in perspective, would it be right to kill or intentionally end the life of one who is suffering from an incurable desease like Aids, etc? Or would it be right to kill or intentionally end the life of one who is suffering from a severe handicap or is retarded?
Just as the indiscriminate killing of people with Aids and severe handicap is considered a grave sin in the sight of the law in this world and in the sight of Shariah; so would the abortion of an un-born baby who has already been conceived in the womb of the mother be considered a grave sin in the sight of Shariah.
Your Question: islam is a religion that is extremely flexible. we have to consider each and every case as a seperate case, and not pass an instantanious judgement on it just because it `seems` haraam.
Indeed, Islam or ‘the way of life’ which Allah Subhanah has approved for mankind is vast in its implications. But that does not mean that the killing of an innocent un-born soul and life would be included in the vastness and flexibility of the practice of the deen! Islam has placed great importance and decreed that its followers respect the life, the honor, and the property of other human beings. One who disrespects and disregards the life, or honor, or the property of other human beings without just Islamic cause, will be brought forth as a criminal in the Just Court of Allah Subhanah to give a full accounting of his deeds on an Inevitable Day.
For a parent to abort a conceived baby, simply because one fears that he/she may not be able to bear the financial or emotional burden of the baby would not be considered Just Islamic Cause; but rather would be considered a grave sin in the sight of Allah Subhanah.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your Brother in Islam,