Sunday, April 16, 2017

Dead or Alive: Juristic Permission for Abortion in Islam

Juristic Permission for Abortion

What constitutes ‘legitimate reason’ for an abortion, whether in the first forty days or within the first one hundred and twenty days, is divided into two types: darurah (absolute necessity), which in the context of abortion means medical necessity; and haajjah (pressing need), which in the context of abortion, are related to societal issues.[1]
With regards to medical necessity, it is unanimous that the safety of the mother’s life takes precedence over all else.[2]  Any other circumstance of medical necessity that would permit the abortion of a fetus would require the expertise and testimony of qualified doctors, ideally with Islamic knowledge, but not necessarily. If a doctor with an Islamic background is not available, as will be the case in the majority of situations, a report from medical experts should be procured and presented to an Islamic scholar.
It is worth noting that in many Western countries, hospitals have ethics committees which liaises with religious leaders to help families come to a decision in such cases.
The definition of a haajjah (societal need) is highly dependent upon each circumstance and must be determined by a qualified Islamic expert.
The following are examples of fataawah shared online that address specific cases that fall under the case of haajjah rather than darurah (medical necessity).

1- Rape

Women who have been raped are considered to have a haajjah when it comes to the pregnancy – it is understandable that pregnancy resulting as rape can be traumatizing to the woman, and that she may not wish to proceed with it.
One of the basic principles of Islam is to relieve distress and hardship, so if a Muslim girl who is keen to remain chaste is exposed to bestial aggression and fears the effect that this may have on her reputation or her honor, or fears that she may be an outcast or that she may be subjected to harm such as being killed, or she fears that she may suffer psychological or nervous diseases, or that her sanity may be affected, or that shame may be brought upon her family for a matter in which she is not guilty of any sin, or that the child will not find any place of safety, then I say: that if this is the case, there is nothing wrong with her aborting the foetus before the soul is breathed into it, especially when it has become easy for a woman to find out if she is pregnant or not, with the advance of medical means of detecting pregnancy in the first week. The earlier the abortion is carried out, the more appropriate this concession is. And Allah knows best.”[3]

2- Zina

The case of zina (adultery) is one where there is some debate and difference. Some scholars permit it, under certain conditions, and depending upon the context of the situation.
For example, for a woman whose life may be endangered if her family discovers her pregnancy that resulted due to an illicit relationship, Shaykh Salah asSawy permits an abortion as long as it is done before the soul is blown into the fetus.
If the woman sincerely repented to Allaah and feared for her life if her family knew of her major sin, then I hope that Allaah forgives her if she has an abortion, with the condition that she does it immediately and without delay, because the act becomes more unlawful with each passing day.[4]
In another situation of zina, the repentance of the mother is considered to be a factor in whether abortion would be allowed or not.

The rule is the abortion is prohibited because the fetus enjoys the right to life. His status is that of any other human being; it bears no relation to the error of his/her mother, nor will (s)he be asked about her [the mother’s] crime. Also, how could she add to the crime of zina, [the crime of] murder? Fiqh scholars agree on this ruling if the fetus has had its spirit blown into it; if it is before that, however, it is subject to the deliberation and ijtihad of the scholars.
The stance we choose is that, if she is still in the initial days of pregnancy (within the first forty days), and this abortion would make it easier for her to repent and return to Allah Most High, then there would be no sin in that, on condition that her repentance is sincere and truthful; and we ask Allah to keep her from sin.[5]
However, other scholars are concerned that easily permitting abortion in the case of zina would lessen the sense of severity and impact of zina itself, and therefore prohibit it.
The efforts and ijtihaad of the fuqaha’ have focused on abortion in general terms, and the rulings on that and the consequences that may follow. They have not gone into details concerning cases where the pregnancy results from immorality. This may be because they consider that to come under the same ruling as abortion of a pregnancy resulting from a proper marriage. If abortion of a pregnancy resulting from a proper marriage is haraam under normal circumstances, then it is even more so in cases where the pregnancy results from immorality, because permitting abortion of pregnancy which results from immorality would encourage evil actions and the spread of immorality.
One of the basic principles of Islam is that it forbids immorality and all the ways that lead to it, e.g., it forbids tabarruj (wanton display of one’s charms) and free mixing (of men and women).
Furthermore, those who say that abortion is permitted within the first forty days of a legitimate pregnancy based their ijtihaad on a concession, like not fasting in Ramadaan for those who have valid excuses, or shortening the four-rak’ah prayers whilst travelling, but it is stated in sharee’ah that concessions cannot be connected to sins.
Imaam al-Quraafi said: “With regard to sins, they cannot be taken as reasons for concessions. Hence one who is travelling for the purpose of sin cannot shorten his prayers or break his fast, because the reason for doing these is travelling, but in this case the reason for travelling is to commit sin, so the concession does not apply, because granting a concession on the basis of sin will encourage people to sin further.” (al-Furooq, 2/33)[6]

3- Medical Complications with the Fetus

In addition to the issue of the mother’s life being in danger, the condition of the fetus also plays a role in determining whether or not an abortion may be allowed. With the advent of modern medicine, there are more ways to protect the health of a fetus even in cases where it is predicted that it may be born with certain medical conditions, whether it be Down’s Syndrome or otherwise.
However, in situations where the complications are severe and there is little chance for the fetus to live a dignified life once it is born, then scholars have allowed for abortions to be made permissible (again, on a case-by-case basis) if doctors testify to its necessity.
If it is proven in a definitive fashion, beyond any doubt, by a trustworthy medical committee, that the foetus is deformed, and that this deformity cannot be treated by the specialists, then in my view it is permissible to abort it, in view of the difficulties it would face in life and the hardship this would present to the parents, and the burdens and responsibilities of care it would place on the society.These considerations and others prompted the Islamic Fiqh Committee of the Muslim World League in its 12th conference held in Makkah on 15 Rajab 1410 AH (10/2/1990 CE), to issue the statement that “it is permissible to abort a foetus which is deformed in the manner mentioned above, with the consent of the parents and within the first 120 days from the beginning of the pregnancy.”
The decision of the committee was in accordance with the fatwa of the Standing Committee for Academic Research and Issuing Fatwas in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, no. 2484, issued on 16/7/1399 AH.[7]
In the case of multiple fetuses (twins, triplets, quadruplets etc), abortion of one more of the fetuses may become permissible if necessary to ensure the health and safety of the mother or other fetuses.
If an authentic committee of medical doctors agree that any fetus endangers the life of mother or the fetus itself is disfigured beyond cure, aborting it is permissible. Note that abortion should be carried out within the first forty days or few days after it. Sometimes it is observed that a woman conceives by three fetuses and she lives a normal life without facing any dangers to her life so, one should not be restricted to a certain number (one or two) of pregnancies. Thus, every fetus (pregnancy) that does not endanger the life of a mother should not be aborted.[8]
Another medical complication that would permit an abortion would be in the case of an ectopic pregnancy.[9] Due to it not being a viable pregnancy in any way, and which would result in physical harm to the woman if it were to be left untreated, it is permitted to remove the fertilized egg from the fallopian tube via surgical procedures.

4- Severe difficulty

This is a vague term that covers any situation which does not fall under the above two, and is left to the interpretation of scholars. With the exclusion of fear of poverty, which is categorically prohibited as a reason for abortion due to explicit ayaat of the Qur’an, this phrase can be used to describe many circumstances that people may find themselves in.
This could include the case of a woman who already has children and who would experience severe psychological distress (such that it would impair her physical and/or mental well-being); a woman who is in a situation where she feels that she does not have the capacity to raise a newborn[10]; or a woman whose husband is a faasiq (someone who is morally corrupt or defiantly disobedient towards Allah).[11]
However, it cannot be stressed enough that each situation must be taken to someone who is Islamically qualified to determine whether any given situation achieves the level of haajjah or darurah that makes abortion permissible.

When Is Abortion Completely Forbidden?

1- Fear of Poverty

There is no disagreement amongst any of the scholars that fear of poverty is not a legitimate reason to permit abortion. Indeed, it is utterly prohibited due to the repeated admonition in the Qur’an not to kill one’s children out of fear of poverty.
{Say, “Come, I will recite what your Lord has prohibited to you. [He commands] that you not associate anything with Him, and to parents, good treatment, and do not kill your children out of poverty; We will provide for you and them.(Qur’an 6:151)
{Indeed, your Lord extends provision for whom He wills and restricts [it]. Indeed He is ever, concerning His servants, Acquainted and Seeing. And do not kill your children for fear of poverty. We provide for them and for you. Indeed, their killing is ever a great sin.} (Qur’an 17:30-31)
Sh Salah asSawy says on the topic: The basic principle concerning the abortion of a pregnancy within the first forty days of development is to refrain, except when there is dire necessity, clear need or obvious benefit. Fear of providing for the child is not one of those reasons, for verily, the One who creates the child and forms it in the womb is responsible for its provision.
After the soul is blown into the fetus, the rule on abortion is that it is strictly forbidden, except in the case when a choice must be made between the life of the child and the life of the mother, according to the testimony of trustworthy, reputable physicians. In such a case, the life of the mother would be given preference since she is the origin. As such, we advise the afflicted couple to give thanks for this blessing and to keep it, unless they find real interests besides the fear of poverty.[12]


2- Abortion After Ensoulment

There is no disagreement whatsoever that any abortion past the stage of 120 days is a sin and, while considered to be just short of murder (meaning that there is no death penalty for the one who causes it to happen), requires repentance and an expiation.
It should be noted that while there is no death penalty, the expiation itself is analogous to that of killing a living person in that it requires blood money. This is due to the fact that once the soul has been breathed into the body, the fetus is now considered a living being whose life is sacrosanct.
In the case where medical complications are detected after the 120 day period, even if there is a chance that the fetus will die immediately or shortly after birth, late term abortion is still prohibited. The pregnancy must be carried to full term, except and unless an emergency situation arises and the mother’s life is in danger. [13] [14] In such a case of emergency, no diya is required either of the doctor or of the mother.

Expiation

There is some discussion over the details of what the expiation for an abortion past 120 days is.
It is generally agreed upon that blood-money must be offered; that is, to purchase and free a believing slave (or to pay the equivalent of that cost). This must go to the heirs of the fetus, not including anyone involved in causing the abortion. In addition, those responsible for the abortion must also fast two consecutive months.[15] It should be noted that if the doctors involved in the procedure are Muslim, they too bear the burden of paying the kaffaarah.[16]
The following discusses the issue of diyah in more detail:
There is disagreement among the scholars as to the asset that must be used in the determination of the blood money (diyah); whether it must be gold, silver, or camels, or a combination thereof. This results in a tangible disagreement in the amount that must be paid.
It could be calculated using gold as the determining asset. In his case, a man’s diyah is one thousand dinârs of gold. Each dinâr weighs 4.25 grams. Hence, the diyah in modern terms would be equal to 4250 grams of gold.
This would then have to be converted into its value in the local currency in order to be paid in cash.
Using the camel as the determining asset is in compliance with the decision of the Supreme Council of Scholars in Saudi Arabia. It is as follows:
The diyah of a man is 100 camels, (which has been calculated to approximate roughly one hundred thousand Saudi riyals). The diyah for a woman is half of that.
With regard to the blood money in the event of an abortion or induced miscarriage, the determination is as follows:
The fetus will be either delivered dead or delivered alive and then die.
If someone criminally induced an abortion or miscarriage and the fetus is still alive upon delivery and dies as a result of this action, then the payment of full blood money (diyah) will be required. It would be same as the diyah of an adult man or woman.
If it is delivered dead, a compensation known as ghurrah must be paid. This amount has to be paid regardless of whether or not the fetus had been endowed with a soul (by passing four months from conception). However, payment of ghurrah will not be obligatory if the fetus has yet to take on the semblance of a human form.
The nutfah (when the embryo is in the form of a coagulated drop) has no ruling pertaining to it whatsoever. Al-Qurtubî relates that this is a point of consensus in Islamic Law. The same is the case with the `alaqah (a leech-like clot) and the mudghah (when it resembles a morsel of flesh which is not formed yet).
Determining whether full formation of the fetus has taken place must be decided by trustworthy doctors after they examine the fetus.
If the fetus has taken on the semblance of a human form and is delivered dead, then the ghurrah must be paid. The estimation of ghurrah which was mentioned in the hadîth as being equal to that of a slave boy or girl. It is estimated as being equal to one tenth of his mother’s diyah or one twentieth of a man’s diyah.
If we determine the ghurrah on the basis of a diyah of one thousand dinârs or 4250 grams of gold, we take one twentieth of that, which would 212.5 grams of gold.
This would then have to be converted into its value in the local currency in order to be paid in cash.
Using the camel as the determining asset where the diyah of the man is 100 camels, the ghurrah will equal the value of five camels.[17]

In the next part, we’ll see how abortion is a reality among Muslims. Stay tuned..
References:

The Sacrifices of Women

There are entire generations of women who have been taught that being a self sacrificing Ideal Muslimah martyr wife and mother will bring them fulfillment - without mentioning the cost to their physical, emotional, and spiritual health.
These women have been taught and trained to hide their own individuality and sense of selves to the point that they can't even remember who they are - and their husbands certainly have no idea because they only ever expected the Ideal Muslimah Stepford Wife, and got it.
The idea of women reclaiming ourselves and taking ownership of our lives is terrifying, because we have been told that to do so is selfish and self-centered.
Worse, so many Muslim women have been taught that their spiritual well-being depends on being this model wife/mother martyr.
To step away from that role leaves them feeling spiritually bereft; their husbands would be bewildered and often upset to see their wives of 20, 30, 40 years no longer performing that particular role and instead pursuing goals or ambitions of their own choosing.
And as women have been told for so long, a husband's displeasure - no matter how petty or silly or selfish of him - is nearly equal to God's displeasure.
Some women will reach a point of recognition and break away from it all. Far more, however, will choose to struggle with their inner emptiness and loss, without doing anything to change it.
It truly is difficult to shut out the ingrained programming and the voices in our minds telling us that we are displeasing God if we choose a different path, a different way of viewing ourselves as believers, as women.
There is nothing wrong with being a wife or mother, but to make that one's focal point/purpose of life is devastating. We were created to worship our Lord, to be khulafaa' of this world, and that worship and responsibility does not require sacrificing our entire well being for the sake of culturally constructed roles and ideas of Muslim womanhood.
The trouble with sacrifice is that we often confuse sacrifice for the Sake of God with sacrifice for the sake of a husband or children.
No doubt God will reward us all the same, but for us to expect humans to repay us with inner fulfillment is deception of the greatest kind. In the end, regardless of women's good intentions, we must know for ourselves and teach our own children that self fulfillment does not come from giving up your own sense of self for the sake of others.
It is completely possible to be a loving wife and mother without becoming *only* a wife and mother. As a Muslim woman, you are still allowed your own thoughts and opinions and dreams and to say and do things that others may not like and disagree with - so long, of course, as we are certain that we are not sinning.
And therein lies the difference: the pleasure of Allah is not necessarily the pleasure of the people. What the people disapprove of is not necessarily what Allah will punish us for. Sacrifice for the sake of Allah will be rewarded by Allah, not the people for whom you sacrificed your life.
{Say, "Indeed, my prayer, my rites of sacrifice, my living and my dying are for Allah , Lord of the worlds.} (Quran 6:162)

Friday, March 31, 2017

Dead or Alive: an Islamic Understanding of Abortion

What is abortion?

Medically, the term ‘abortion’ refers to the termination of a pregnancy before it is viable. However, as this is a broad definition that includes miscarriages (which is when the pregnancy ends spontaneously or due to natural causes), the more specific term and definition is ‘induced abortion’: the deliberate interruption of the pregnancy.
The legal status of abortion, and conditions and restrictions on it, vary from country to country and even state-to-state in some countries.
In Canada, abortion first became liberalized in the 1960s; it later became legal without restriction or conditions and was considered to violate the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to force a woman to carry a pregnancy to full term against her will.[1] It should be noted that doctors do have the right to conscientious objection.[2]
Despite the lack of legal restrictions on abortion in Canada, 90% of abortions in Canada take place during the first trimester, just over 9% take place between 12 and 20 weeks, and 0.4% take place after 20 weeks.[3] These late term abortions take place primarily because the fetus is gravely or fatally impaired, or the woman’s life or physical health is at risk, or both (Statistics Canada, 2003).
Thus, the idea that removing any legal restrictions on abortion would result in a flood of women abruptly choosing to terminate their pregnancies is clearly a false one. Regardless of the faith or reasons for undergoing abortion, the vast majority of women who do choose to go through with it, do so with full understanding of the seriousness of the decision.
The United States of America has significantly more restrictions on their abortion laws. Abortion was made legal in the United States in 1973 in the famous landmark case of Roe vs Wade. However, unlike in Canada, the Supreme Court ruled that individual states were allowed to place their own restrictions with regards to physician and hospital requirements, gestational limits, funding, parental involvement, and more.
[4] 41 out of 50 states have restrictions that prohibit abortion after a certain number of weeks, ranging from as early as 6 weeks to as late as 28 weeks.[5] Regardless of the legal restrictions, however, 89-92% of all abortions take place within the first trimester.[6]

Abortion laws in the Muslim world are varied.

In Malaysia, abortion is legal within very strict and certain parameters – namely, in cases where the mother’s life is at risk, and if the pregnancy is injurious to the mental and physical health of the mother. Both cases require a qualified doctor’s testimony.[7]
In Pakistan[8], Egypt[9], and Iran[10] abortion is illegal with the sole exception of the mother’s life being at risk or severe medical complications with the fetus.Abortion in Tunisia, however, was legalized in 1965; it is available upon request at any time within the first trimester. After this gestational period, “an abortion may be performed when there is a risk that the health or mental balance of the mother will be compromised by the continuation of the pregnancy or a risk that the unborn child will suffer from a serious disease or infirmity.”
[11] Neighboring Algeria permits abortion for the preservation of the mother’s physical and mental health, only with the testimony and involvement of a qualified doctor.[12]
Turkey permits abortion up until the 10th week, with conditions such as spousal consent, and strong reasoning such as risk to the mother’s physical or mental health, conception due to incest or rape, and serious socio-economic factors.[13] [14]

The Status of Children in Islam

Before one talks about abortion in Islamic Law, one must first be aware of Islam’s overall stance regarding family values and having children.
One of the most well-known ahadith that emphasizes having children is the following:
Abu Dawood (2050) narrated that Ma’qil ibn Yazaar (may Allah be pleased with him) said: A man came to the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and said: “O Messenger of Allaah, I have found a woman who is from a good family and is beautiful, but she does not bear children; should I marry her?” He told him not to. Then he came to him a second time and said something similar and he told him not to marry her. Then he came to him a third time and said something similar and he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Marry the one who is loving and fertile, for I will be proud of your great numbers.”
Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Irwa’ al-Ghaleel, 1784.[15]
{Wealth and children are the adornment of the life of this world. But the good righteous deeds that last, are better with your Lord for rewards and better in respect of hope.} (18:46)
Scholars have also stated that that having children is one of the purposes of marriage, and one of the objectives of the Shari’ah is the preservation of lineage and offspring[16].
Due to this, the default attitude held by Islamic scholars is always that having children is something encouraged and that it should not be prevented (by either birth control or abortion) as much as possible, except for ‘legitimate reasons.’ Such legitimate reasons are usually considered to be of a medical nature, although more scholars have become understanding of other factors such as psychological well-being and even personal choice or preference (although the latter is still quite rare in terms of being taken as a serious basis for such decisions).
With that in mind, there is still room for discussion on the topic of abortion in Islamic Law. Islam does not outright forbid abortion at all, regardless of circumstances; rather, there are a few general principles that are held and referred to. For example, the preservation of life is considered to be one of the major Maqaasid ashShar’iah (objectives of Divine Law) – not only that of a fetus, but primarily, of the mother of that fetus. However, as with every other aspect of the Shari’ah, extenuating circumstances are considered on a case-by-case basis.

The Beginning of Life

The Qur’an and Sunnah have both mentioned details regarding embryology.
{And certainly did We create man from an extract of clay.
Then We placed him as a sperm-drop in a firm lodging.
Then We made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood; then of that clot We made a (foetus) lump; then we made out of that lump bones, and clothed the bones with flesh; then we developed out of it another creature. So blessed be Allah, the best of creators!} 
(Qur’an 23:12-14)
Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) ,the true and truly inspired said, “(The matter of the Creation of) a human being is put together in the womb of the mother in forty days, and then he becomes a clot of thick blood for a similar period, and then a piece of flesh for a similar period. Then Allah sends an angel who is ordered to write four things. He is ordered to write down his (i.e. the new creature’s) deeds, his livelihood, his (date of) death, and whether he will be blessed or wretched (in religion). Then the soul is breathed into him. So, a man amongst you may do (good) deeds till there is only a cubit between him and Paradise and then what has been written for him decides his behavior and he starts doing (evil) deeds characteristic of the people of the (Hell) Fire.
And similarly a man amongst you may do (evil) deeds till there is only a cubit between him and the (Hell) Fire, and then what has been written for him decides his behavior, and he starts doing deeds characteristic of the people of Paradise.”  (Sahih Muslim)
There have been many detailed analyses of the Qur’an and Sunnah’s description of the creation of human life, and how they correspond to modern medical discoveries and knowledge of embryology.[17] However, it is sufficient for the scope of this article to note that the scholars have summarized the stages of fetal development as the following:
  1. Three stages of forty days each, beginning with the ‘alaqah, then the nutfah, and then the mudghah, thereby completing one hundred and twenty days before the soul is blown into the fetus.
  2. One stage of forty days, during which the zygote develops into the stages of ‘alaqah, nutfah, and mudghah, followed by ensoulment at the completion of forty days; the fetus will then grow and be considered a living being.[18] [19]
This distinction is necessary in order to understand the two fiqhi stances on the permissibility of abortion in extenuating circumstances. The presence of the soul is what establishes the Shar’i difference between an abortion (ijhaadh) that does not require the payment of diyah (blood-money), and killing (qatl) that does require the diyah.
Those who follow the first opinion, that the soul is blown into the fetus at the end of one hundred and twenty days, believe that it is not sinful to abort before that period of time, if the reasons for doing so are legitimate.[20] However, to abort after ensoulment is considered categorically prohibited except in the case of the mother’s life or death.[21]
Those who follow the second opinion, that the soul is blown into the fetus at the end of forty days, believe that to abort after that is sinful if for any reason other than life or death of the mother[22]; even if that is the case, diyah is still necessitated.[23]
The following is a brief summary of scholarly opinions on the issue of aborting before forty days, with and without specific conditions:
Some scholars are of the view that it is permissible to abort the fetus before forty days, and others are of the view that it is haraam (prohibited).
Among those who regard it as permissible, Ibn al-Humaam al-Hanafi said in Fath al-Qadeer (3/401): Is it permissible to abort it after becoming pregnant? It is permissible, so long as no features have begun to appear.
It may be that what they meant by features appearing is when the soul is breathed into the fetus, which happens after one hundred and twenty days of pregnancy. Or it may be that what they meant is the appearance of features even though the soul has not yet been breathed into it, which does not happen before eighty days of pregnancy, and most likely occurs at ninety days.
In Haashiyat Qalyoobi wa ‘Umayrah (a Shaafa’i book) (4/160) it says: Yes, it is permissible to abort it, even by using medicine, before the soul has been breathed into it, unlike what al-Ghazaali said. End quote.
Al-Mardaawi said in al-Insaaf (a Hanbali book) (1/386): It is permissible to take medicine to abort a nutfah. That is stated in al-Wajeez. Ibn al-Jawzi said in Ahkaam al-Nisa’: It is haraam. It says in al-Furoo’: The apparent meaning of the words of Ibn ‘Aqeel in al-Funoon is that it is permissible to abort it before the soul is breathed into it. He said: There is some validity in this view. End quote. Shaykh Taqiy al-Deen said: It is better for a woman not to use medicine to prevent the sperm from taking its course. End quote.
Among those who do not allow it, al-Dardeer said in his commentary on Khaleel (a Maaliki book) (2/266): It is not permissible to expel the maniy from the womb even if that is before forty days, and once the soul has been breathed into it, it is haraam according to consensus. End quote.
Al-Ramli said in Nihaayat al-Muhtaaj (a Shaafa’i book) (8/442): al-Muhibb al-Tabari said: The scholars differed concerning the nutfah before forty days, and there are two views. It was said that it is not proven that it comes under the same ruling as abortion and infanticide, and it was said that it is protected and it is not permissible to harm it, and it should not be expelled after it has settled in the womb, unlike ‘azl (coitus interruptus) which occurs before it reaches the womb.
Al-Ghazaali referred to this matter in al-Ihya’ and said, stating that ‘azl is unlike the former case: This is not like abortion and infanticide because those are offences against a living being.  The first stage of existence is when the sperm reaches the womb and mixes with the woman’s water, so harming it is an offence. If it has become an ‘alaqah or a mudghah, then the offence is more serious, and if the soul has been breathed into it and it has become a human being then the offence is even worse. Then he said: It is unlikely that it is not forbidden. End quote.
To sum up, the scholars’’ differed concerning this issue, so you should not do that unless there is a good reason, so that you will avoid falling into haraam (prohibited) and will be on the safe side with regard to your religious commitment.[24]
In the next parts of this series, we will discuss abortion rulings according to Islam, why women go for abortion and abortion amongst Muslim women.
Stay tuned..
[18] Islam and Abortion; Shafi A. K. Lodhi