In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
Allaah [The Exalted] said:
فَلَمَّا جَآءَتۡهُمۡ رُسُلُهُم بِٱلۡبَيِّنَـٰتِ فَرِحُواْ بِمَا عِندَهُم مِّنَ ٱلۡعِلۡمِ وَحَاقَ بِهِم مَّا كَانُواْ بِهِۦ يَسۡتَہۡزِءُونَ
Then when their Messengers came to them with clear proofs, they were glad [and proud] with that which they had of the knowledge [of worldly things]: And that at which they used to mock, surrounded them [i.e. the punishment]. [Surah Ghaafir’ Aayah 83]
Every concocted ideology has its blind followers, extremists and oppressors; therefore, it is no surprise that some of the so called enlightened overseers or scholars of the worldly sciences do have their fair share of criminal activity and mischief making in the earth.
Many of us – as previous learners in primary schools and secondary schools, colleges and universities – are acquainted with Charles Darwin’s ”Savages and Favoured Races”, which – without a doubt – is nothing but a basis for racial discrimination. However, the path of the arrogant and opinionated eugenicists led to more oppression – crimes committed against the weak and vulnerable in society. Population eugenics involved asking people to produce desired traits through sexual reproduction. Indeed, the believer is absolutely free from the agenda and ideas of those whose approach to sexual reproduction is solely to promote their materialistic or racist agendas – either to produce future workers for the communists and capitalists or prevent other members of society from having children in the name of racial hygiene or discourage them from that out of fear of poverty.
First, we do not lend an ear to any shaytaan amongst humankind who seeks to threaten us with poverty – that by having many children one places himself in a state of poverty. Shaikh Abdul Waahid Abu Khadeejah [may Allaah preserve him] said: According to scientists, another cause of poverty is population growth in countries that cannot afford to feed the extra mouths. Most rich countries have a stable population with roughly as many babies born as people dying. However, in poor countries, the populations seem to be increasing. Muslims, as rule, are not allowed to use contraception due to fear of not being able to provide for their children – they learn from the Quran that Allah will enrich them from Himself from ways and means that He provides. Population control measures are not from the Islamically legislated means to remove poverty – this is proven by the fact that there is sufficient food and resources in the world to feed the poor many times over daily! Added to that is the reality that large populations are a tremendous resource for a nation. Countries with large populations are quite often the wealthiest and have the fastest growing economies. Note: In certain situations, contraception is permitted and I have discussed that elsewhere. Islam teaches that poor people must be helped with education, skills, charity, better infrastructure and better health care. In this way the poor are not neglected and the wealth of the rich is purified in the sight of Allāh through the giving of charity. People have large families because the family unit helps each other and they care for their elders. Death of young children is much higher in poorer countries due to sicknesses and disease. So, the Muslims have a duty to help the poor, even if they are non-Muslims. The Prophet said: “Give charity to people of other Religions.” (Shaikh Al-Albānī said it was an authentic Hadīth, in As-Saheehah). [Ref A]
Second, the legacy of the arrogant and opinionated eugenicists is well-known, those who engaged in their useless quest for a genetic overclass and so called reproduction of only perfect people, and thus discriminated against everyone with the slightest disability or deficiency! The Nazis took this to the next level and committed atrocities – utilized eugenic ideology to justify large-scale forced sterilization, euthanasia and murdered Jews.
So-called “Positive” eugenics paid close attention to encouraging those of so-called “good stock” to reproduce, but those considered unfit for reproduction, such as the poor, criminals or the feeble-minded were discouraged or prevented through so-called “Negative” eugenics. When this satanic idea was championed by some politicians and government officials, the wellbeing of the vulnerable in society was completely under the control of a people whose worldly sciences were devoid of the compassion, mercy and the upright moral character ordained by the creator of the heavens and the earth. Imaam Ash-Shaatibee [may Allaah have mercy upon him] said: ”The Sharee’ah is worthy of being a decisive proof against them [i.e. against mankind and Jinn] and a beacon by way of which they are guided to the truth. Their nobility is established in accordance with how far they embrace its rulings- through acting upon them in speech, belief and deeds– and not merely due to the level of their intellects or their nobility amongst their people. That is because Allaah [The Most High] has determined nobility through Taqwa and no other than it. Allaah [The Most High] said: ۡۚ- Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa] [49:13]
The one who is the firmest [in his or her] adherence to the Sharee’ah is more worthy of honour and nobility, but it is not possible for the one below this [i.e. the one whose adherence to the Sharee’ah is below that of the one who is firmest in adhering to it] to reach the highest level of honour based on his adherence to the Sharee’ah. Therefore, honour is [measured] in accordance with one’s [level of adherence] to the Sharee’ah”. [Ref B]
Therefore, views about what is perfect or desirable in a human being are not be judged based on the whims, desires or views of philosophers, scientists and eugenicists, rather they are solely judged based on the divine revelation – within what the revelation declares permissible, prohibited, obligatory, recommended, abhorred or desired.
The founder of the eugenics movement was called Francis Galton [1822-1911] and he was influenced by Charles Darwin’s kufr idea ‘The Origin of Species’. This Galton concentrated on the idea of heritability of different traits, especially the heritability of intelligence and how to counter society’s so-called scarcity of talent and character, and that poverty, vagrancy and crime were due to the transfer of degenerate traits from parents to their child. His satanic ideas influenced some so-called intellectuals in Britain, the US, Germany and other countries at the time. Indeed, all praise and thanks be to Allaah, this not how a believer addresses problems in society, because it is nothing but seeking for scapegoats so as to justify neglect of the vulnerable in society. Some of those arrogant and opinionated eugenicists held that preventing the poor from having children was a means of protecting society because it stopped them from producing people similar to them. Thirty-two American states passed eugenic-sterilization laws during the twentieth century, and between sixty and seventy thousand people were sterilized under them. However, this has had no effect in improving virtue, just as Imaam As-Sadi [may Allaah have mercy upon him] stated: ”Among the most amazing of affairs is that many contemporary writers and politicians seek to remedy the many social ills and try to do so do from many angles, however as for the problem of Il’haad deviation from the right path] – whose surge has carried away the majority of young people, they have not rushed to stop it by returning to sound faith and certainty; rather they have been abandoned to wander blindly in their misguidance and wavering in beguilement, and thus the social ills they seek to remedy gives birth to other social ills, because if the path to remedying social ills is not based on sound faith and sound religion, they will increase and become worse”. [Ref C]
He [may Allaah have mercy upon him] also said, ”What type of progress is this? A progress whose people became like vicious wild animals and whose abiding practice is oppression, annihilation, colonization of weak nations and depriving them of their rights?” [Ref 1] ”They developed these affairs through a development that is disconnected and severed from submission to Allāh and the religion ordained by Allāh… it has caused harm and led its proponents to savagery and barbarism whose outcomes has been destruction, ruin and evils that has no comparison”. [Ref 2] ”Indeed, it is impossible to rectify the souls and acquire virtue solely through the worldly sciences. Experience and clearly witnessed circumstances are the greatest proofs regarding this affair, because despite its advancement and vastness it has been unable to nurture and rectify the souls. What the Religion of Islaam propagates is that which is entrusted with this rectification – it is what will guide the thoughts towards the truthful and authentic sources of knowledge and guide the actions of the people towards good and prevent them from evil. Islam is The Rectifier of the Creeds and Manners- the thing that cultivates the thoughts [upon righteousness], urges towards virtuousness and prevents from depravity. The essence of that which the religion calls to regarding belief in the Unseen, which includes belief in Allaah and that which He possesses of Names, Attributes and Actions of perfection; belief in Angels, belief in recompense for one’s good and bad deeds in this life and the next, which cannot be known except through the Messengers, is what acquaints a person with the fact that rectification – in reality – is not possible through other than sound belief and the religion of Islaam. Therefore, even if the worldly sciences rectify [some] affairs based upon that which people know in detail, it will still not be equal [in perfection, excellence etc] to the knowledge of the Messengers [in the least]. It will neither reach that which is reached through the knowledge of the Messengers nor can it influence the souls in the manner in which the knowledge of the Messengers has done; for indeed the souls do not voluntarily submit except through belief in Allaah, belief in His Angels, belief in His Books, belief in His Messengers and belief in the hereafter. And without this, voluntary submission is impossible, as is well known regarding human nature. [Ref 3]
Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadi [may Allaah preserve him] said: ”The knowledge brought by the Prophets is rectification for the people, a guide for them towards the right path and removes them from the darkness they are living in – the darkness of disbelief and ignorance. As for the knowledge of the philosophers and the heretics, then what Allaah has stated truly applies to it: [Then when their Messengers came to them with clear proofs, they were glad (and proud) with that which they had of the knowledge (of worldly things): And that at which they used to mock, surrounded them (i.e. the punishment)]. [Surah Ghaafir’ Aayah 83]
It is the knowledge which the people boast about nowadays, whether it is medicine, engineering, astronomy, [modern] politics and economics. After the Prophets came to them – to remove them from the darkness of ignorance and enter them into the light of the knowledge and Eemaan, they were glad and boastful with the knowledge they possess, (just as Allaah has stated): [Then when their Messengers came to them with clear proofs, they were glad (and proud) with that which they had of the knowledge (of worldly things): And that at which they used to mock, surrounded them (i.e. the punishment)]. [Surah Ghaafir’ Aayah 83]
These sciences become a trial and tribulation if they are not regulated by the knowledge which Muhammad [sallal laahu alayhi wasallam] brought. [Ref 4]
Therefore, be warned against embracing the ideas of eugenicists regarding population control and we’ll leave you with this statement of Imaam Abdul Azeez Bin Baaz [may Allaah have mercy upon him].
Imaam Abdul Azeez Bin Baaz [rahimahullaah] was asked about a husband and a wife who agreed not to have children and whether this is allowed, so the Shaikh [rahimahullaah] responded and said that this agreement of theirs is not permissible. As long as the woman is able [to bear children], then it is not permissible for them to do this because the Islamic legislation requires that the people give concern to bearing children and make the Ummah numerous. The Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] said: Marry the childbearing, loving woman for I shall outnumber the peoples by you on the Day of Resurrection. In another wording [of this narration the Prophet said]: Outnumber [i.e. the followers of the other] Prophets on the Day of Judgement.” That is because by way of this [i.e. having many children] those who worship Allaah among the Muslims will be numerous, the Ummah will be numerous and strong in opposing their enemies.
It is not permissible for a man to abandon having children out of fear of either tiredness in seeking after a livelihood or due to difficulty, or due to expenditure, or due to a desire to enjoy one’s wife and other than that. It also not permissible for a woman to do this, rather it is obligated on both of them to pursue the means of having offspring -be eager to seek the means to having children so that the Ummah becomes numerous and to fulfil what the Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] stated.
However, if the woman either suffers a lot of pain due to an illness of the womb or she cannot give birth except by way of surgical operation, then this is an excuse to not have children. If the surgical operation [or caesarean] will harm her- it is feared that something will happen to her, and also if the children are many- born at close intervals and bringing them up becomes difficult upon her, then there is nothing to prevent her from taking some pills [or contraception] or some preventative measures for a year or two – the period of breastfeeding- so that she becomes strong enough to nurture the children and able to nurture the other newly born. Audio link with transcript http://www.binbaz.org.sa/noor/11853 NB: This is a general Fatwa, therefore married couples should ask the scholars about their specific circumstances, in order to receive specific ruling related to their situation.
Fertility issues and contraception in Islam: The choice to have children.
Rulings Related to Contraception, Family Planning & Following One Pregnancy with Another by Abu Khadeejah
Abortion and its ruling in Islam
Miscarriage of a foetus and the rulings related to the mother and child: Ibn Bāz and Ibn Uthaimeen.
[Ref A: https://www.abukhadeejah.com/the-causes-of-poverty-in-light-of-climate-change-population-growth-and-other-factors-part-ii-ethics-2-4/]
[Ref B: Al-Itisaam 3/434 slightly paraphrased]
[Ref C: An Excerpt from ‘Al-Adillatul Qawaatiq’ pages 40-41′. slightly paraphrased]
[Refs 1 and 2: Source: Ad-Dalaa’il Al-Qur’aaniyyah Fee Annal Uloom Wal-A’maal An-Naafi’ah Al-Asriyyah Daakhilatun Fid-deen Al-Islaamiy 44]
[Ref 3: Al-Adillatul Qawaati Wal-Baraaheem Fee Ibtaalil Usoolil Mulhideen. Page 48
[Ref 4: Marhaban Yaa Taalibal Ilm. Page 100]