NRDF - National Research & Development Foundation, Peshawar


Family Planning & Islam

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Family Planning & Islam

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Views of Religious Leaders on Population Programme

Human life is a process of continuous evolution. Almighty Allah has bestowed all human beings with the power of knowledge. This power has been revealing over the times and affecting the human life in many ways. History teaches us a lesson that a person or a nation which does not take cognizance of the changing circumstances or does not look out for the necessities of life according to ever changing situation, remains way behind in the race for existence and thus slowly passed on to the history.

If we look upon the evolution of civilizations, we would come to know that human thoughts have twofold effects on the societies. On one hand it has affected the thoughts and on the other hand it has changed the practical life style of mankind. Both these factors go side by side and change course over time. Thoughts affect practical life and the changes in the practical life have certain consequences upon the opinions and notions of the people.

We can understand this phenomenon in a better way by looking at the experiences of the West. As the west revolutionized in science and the process of discovering the new dimensions of the universe advanced, the life of the mankind got better and its lifestyle also changed. For example, the revolution in the world of communication and after the successful voyage to the information technology has made life very comfortable. If we also include the new developments in medical sciences and other fields of life in the list of achievements, it seems that the mankind has gathered all the comforts of life and has controlled over everything that can cause damage life except death. This practical change altered the western thoughts and the concept of “The End of History” emerged. Now, it is said that a liberal democratic capitalistic society is the zenith of human thought and hereafter there is no possibility of further voyage of civilization.

Irrespective of the accuracy of this theory and opinion of its opponents, it is evident that the journey of human life is going on and the civilizations are constantly in the state of an evolution. Under these circumstances, if a nation does not change itself in accordance with the changing situations and for any reason remains the captive of past then under the law of nature problems emerge for the very existence of such a nation. The natural law of permanence dictates that whosoever gets the ability to adopt self into the changing circumstances can survive, and the one who does not, is left behind and eliminated one day.

Nations have to decide for themselves whether they should welcome the changing realities of life or reject them and live in the state of stagnation. Allama Muhammad Iqbal terms it a difficult phase in the life of a nation by saying (translation):

“Fear of the new age and adherence to the old one is a difficult stage in the life of nations”.

Today, Muslim societies are challenged with the same problem of choice whether to adapt to the new era or live within the old age of conservativeness. The religious thoughts in Islam provide guidance to its followers as how to adjust to the requirements of the new age. This is the base of Islamic theory of evolution which could be aptly termed as Ijtehad (re-interpretation of Islamic law). Ijtehad stands to mean understanding the new age and then referring to the fundamental guiding sources - Qur’an and Sunnah - and principles of the religion to serve as the basis for the solution to the problems of new era. Today, the urgent need of Muslim societies is to have understanding of new circumstances, to draw a line of action within the sphere of the religion and to adopt that line of action in an atmosphere of peace assuring vistas leading to their prosperity. In this regard one of the important problems that need our attention is the family planning. As currently the nation is facing numerous problems such as poverty, illiteracy, environmental pollution and many others, the issue becomes more vital. Much has been written on this issue since 1960; however, so far a consensus could not be developed on this issue. There appears no way out except to find solution to this problem in the light of Islamic orders and moral values. The same also applies to other facets of life.

Taking cognizance of the above mentioned state of affairs, three years ago the NRDF worked the National Research and Development Foundation (NRDF) started work on research articles concerning important contemporary issues in cooperation of religious scholars, Ulama, research organizations and intellectuals, which are in final stage of completion. This work consisting of 16 subjects covering about 160 articles is being published in shape of booklets (list is given at the end of each booklet). In the booklet in hand, not only family planning and various aspects of Islam have been covered but the contiguous prevailing circumstances have also been discussed. In addition, some questions have been answered in the light of religious teachings and moral values. We hope that these endeavors of ours will prove to be a milestone in understanding the rapidly increasing population in the light of Islamic teaching and finding solutions thereof, enforcing democratic attitudes, stimulating new thoughts of peace and security, awakening national spirit in the people and enhancing economic development and prosperity. Readers are requested to make copies of this booklet and distribute them amongst their friends and convince the Khutaba of mosques to make use of it in their preaching.

The NRDF appreciates the day and night physical and intellectual efforts of all the Ulama, organizations, colleagues and its staff. This literary research plan could only be completed because of their great constant endeavors. The rightful recipients of commendation is Dr. Muhammad Farooq Khan, a famous intellectual in Pakistan and writer of many books, who despite his enormous engagements worked on the sensitive but important topic of family planning; and brought forth its different aspects in a unique, fascinating and well reasoned style.

I am personally thankful to Honorable Maulana Fazal-ur-Rehman, Secretary General of Jamiat Ulama-e-Pakistan, who instead of his day to day commitments took a time out and exchanged views of mutual interests and activities of the NRDF. We are also thankful to Honorable Siraj-ul-Haq, Secratory Geveral Jamaat-e-Islami, NWFP, who gave us a few moments of his precious time and encouraged us by visiting the NDRF office.  I also pay my tribute to Honorable Maulana Muhammad Tayyab, Ameer Ishaat-al-Tawheed-wal-Sunah, Pakistan for his repeated visits and remembrance in his prayers.  I am also thankful from my heart to dear brother Abdul Jalil Jan, Secretary Information Jamiat Ulama-e-Islam, NWFP who according to his capacity stood besides us at times of need and provided us valuable guidance.  I also pay my tribute to Maulana Saeed-ud-Din Sherkoti, Fazil Deoband, Mufaser-e-Qur’an, Hazrat Maulana Muhammad Idrees Kandehelvi’s son Dr. Mian Muhammad Siddiqui, Dr. Qibla Ayaz, Dr. Tufail Hashmi, Dr. Meraj-ul-Islam Zia, Qari Fayaz-ur-Rehman Alvi (Peshawar), Dr. Ikram Ullah Jan Qasmi Fazil Deoband, Dr. Fakhar-ul-Hassan Kararvi, Maulana Anwar Seed (Peshawar), Maulana Abdul Aziz Noorastani and Sheikh Imdad Ullah (Jamiah Asria, Peshawar), Maulana Anwar-ul-Arifeen (Peshawar), Maulana Naseeb Ali Shah (Bannu), Maulana Gohar Shah (Charsaddah), Maulana Ghulam Saddiq (Charsaddah), Maulana Hamid-ul-Haq Haqqani, Maulana Irfan-ul-Haq Haqqani, Maulana Abdul Qayyum Haqqani (Nowshera), Maulana Gohar Rahman, Honorable Maulana Abdul Alam (Nowshera), Maulana Izhar-ul-Haq (Shah Mansoor), Maulana Gul Rahim (Sawabi), Maulana Abdullah (Haripur), Maulana Wasi-ur-Rahman (Mansehra) and Major Tariq Mehmood for their participation in the activities of the NRDF and their literary, spiritual and practical cooperation and guidance.  It would have been impossible for us to make progress without their cooperation and prayers.

I am thankful from the core of my heart to all the political personalities, intellectuals and journalist friends of NWFP for backing us up all the times and thus encouraging our efforts. In this regard the names of Iqbal Hussain Khattak PPP Sherpao, Rahim Dad Khan PPPP, Owais Ahmad Ghani, Dr. Abdul Jalil Populzai, Zafar Ullah Khan, Khurshid Anwar Jawadi, Rahim Ullah Yousufzai of “The News”, Behroz Khan, Bukhar Shah, Abdullah,  Shamim Shahid of “The Nation”,  Farid Ullah Khan of “Ausaf”, Sohail Qalander and Aqeel Yousufzai of “Express”,  Waseem Ahmad Shah of “Dawan”, M. Riaz and Qaiser Butt of “ Nawae Waqat” are all praise worthy.

I am also thankful, along with all my friends living in this country, to all those friends living in foreign for their moral cooperation over the times. The organization is also very thankful to those foreigner friends who kept themselves in picture of the present plan and extended moral support. Among these the names of Dr. Suzanne Saulniers, Karen Mitman and Hilda Karrasik are worth mentioning.

I am also grateful to my parents, uncle Prof. Mohib Ullah Khan, brothers and sisters and other members of my family. I always felt my self incomplete without their moral and social cooperation and training.  In the end feel it appropriate to also thank my wife for her cooperation which she provided in difficult stages. She made me able to utilize my best abilities for this extremely important literacy and research plan by performing the domestic responsibilities with excellence.