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Cloning is a wider term than what people normally think. What I am interested in is specifically the biological cloning as defined below:

From Wikipedia:

Cloning in biotechnology refers to processes used to create copies of DNA fragments (molecular cloning), cells (cell cloning), or organisms.

This type of cloning can be used for several productive things, the most important of which is Stem Cell Research which can be really helpful in curing certain Genetic diseases which are not caused by Bacteria or Virus or the like but in fact, these diseases are mainly because of some abnormality or deformity of Genes.

However, there is Reproductive Cloning as well which resulted in famous "Dolly The Sheep" and later on, several other Mammals were successfully cloned.

My question is what is Islam's stance on this? Is cloning allowed wholly or partially and if partially what is allowed and what isn't. I am not sure but I think there may not be a lot of direct Ayahs or Ahadith for this but there might be some scholarly research which I am looking for.

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+1 Good question. I wonder what others think in this matter. –  Ahmed Han Aug 23 '12 at 11:37
    
I'd consider reproductive cloning to be more incestuous than with the closest family member; it's effectively reproducing with oneself. But as far as I know, there's nothing explicitly forbidding reproducing with yourself. –  Muz Aug 23 '12 at 17:29
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5 Answers 5

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Cloning is a new issue, and it is still being discussed. I am going to answer with what I concluded by reading couple of different views on the subject. As far as I can tell, There are 3 main areas of discussion about this issue;

  1. Partial Cloning: This includes cloning of heart, kidneys etc. I conclude that this kind of cloning for treatment purposes, not only allowed, but also encouraged. In Islam, it is encouraged to find cures to diseases.
  2. Non-human cloning: This includes cloning whole animals and plants. Scholars are in the middle about this, but it seems like more people lean towards it being allowed.
  3. Human Cloning: This is the most discussed part about cloning. Majority argues that human cloning is not permitted. I will present most common argument that I found against it. As far as I can tell, main argument supporting it is that, there is not enough evidence to ban it.

Main point against the human cloning is it would mess up inter-human relationships. In islam, inter-human relationships is very important. Also, islam puts great importance on identification of father of a person. What would be the relationship between a cloned person and the person who gave the DNA? Are they siblings, or mother-child? Who would be the father? Would you be allowed to marry your close blood relative's clone? All these questions remains to be answered. Considering this, human cloning can cause havoc in family and social life. Therefore, it wouldn't be permissible.

Source: Articles listed here and couple of other web pages.

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cannot Eve be thought as a clone of Adam PBUH, and Jesus PBUH a clone of some reserved DNA. Hence Allah has already done that. Jesus had no problems in not having a father , nor did Adam have! –  Islam Jan 25 '13 at 10:00
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How about this hadith?

Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) said: The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) visited me after returning from a journey, and I had a shelf with a thin cloth curtain hanging over it and on which there were portraits. When he saw it, the colour of his face changed (because of anger) and he said, "O Aishah! the most grievous torment from Allah on the Day of Resurrection will be for those who imitate (Allah) in the act of His creation.'' `Aishah said: We tore it into pieces and made a cushion or two cushions out of that. [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Even though this is about portraits, doesn't the bold bit apply to cloning too? Doesn't full human cloning fit into the same category as imitating Allah in the act of His creation?

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That fatwa is really long and all the verses it quotes seem to only be along the lines of "Allah created man". There doesn't seem to be anything explicitly prohibiting 'man creating man'. Could you highlight anything on that from the fatwa, in case I missed it out? –  Muz Aug 23 '12 at 17:26
    
@Muz, how about this hadith? –  oshirowanen Aug 23 '12 at 21:39
    
I looked for the source of that - Sahih Muslim, Book 24, No. 5261. It seems quite weak, since similar hadiths (Bukhari, Book 34, No 318 and Sahih Muslim 5262-5274) don't actually speak anything of creation being haraam, but that the person drawing those photos will be punished by being asked to recreate what they have drawn. But Sahih Muslim 5275 is probably stronger. –  Muz Aug 24 '12 at 18:45
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When a new rasul&nabi (messenger&prophat) arrives, he receives a Book from Allah in which there are rules to arrange the social life and relationships between people. After the death of that nabi, new and unseen problems start to occur in the society which are not clearly described in the previous Books of Allah. People stay in dark until a new nabi arrives and rearranges the social life according to the new conditions.

14 centuries have passed after the death of the last nabi. The technology changed a lot, lives of people have changed greatly. Because of that, we are in complete dark in some matters. Cloning is one of them.

If we are understanding 33:40 and 40:34 correctly, there won't be any more nabi arriving anymore. So, we won't be able to receive perfect solutions from Allah to solve our problems. In this case, we should try to solve our these kind of unclear problems according to maroof (common sense).

In my opinion, cloning is not good. It will probably disrupt the balance in nature. Evil people will may make human farms in far future. Rich people will clone healty and beautiful children, so a different kind of the racism and social class differences between people will start to appear.

But we can't say that that it is haram, because we don't have proof or enough knowledge to state so. All the current fatwas are jumping to conclusions from ayats that are actually irrelevant of the topic. Cloning will sure may have some good points too; like producing more animals in a state of drought or scarceness. But also, having good points does not guaranty something to be halal - e.g.; alcohol is haram despite having some good points.

Cloning is new to humans. I will be easier and more common in the future. This is inevitable, it will be a fact of our lives. We feel some great problems in it. We need to be cautious. We don't know what future will give birth to. But, it is best not to make claims like "it is haram" or "it is halal". Allah forbids it:

وَلاَ تَقُولُواْ لِمَا تَصِفُ أَلْسِنَتُكُمُ الْكَذِبَ هَذَا حَلاَلٌ وَهَذَا حَرَامٌ لِّتَفْتَرُواْ عَلَى اللّهِ الْكَذِبَ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَفْتَرُونَ عَلَى اللّهِ الْكَذِبَ لاَ يُفْلِحُونَ
And do not say about what your tongues assert of untruth, "This is halal (lawful) and this is haram (unlawful)", to invent falsehood about Allah. Indeed, those who invent falsehood about Allah will not succeed.
Nahl 116

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Thanks for the answer @Ahmed Han. But what about the medical research that is based on this for curing some diseases which do not have any other cure. For example, Vitiligo? Doesn't logic say that this should be allowed? –  Aamir Aug 23 '12 at 11:56
    
@Aamir Yes, you are right. In my answer I tried to mention these kind of special cases. Cloning is not a completely evil technology. –  Ahmed Han Aug 23 '12 at 11:59
    
Are Kitabs revealed upon Nabis? I always knew this is the point of distinction between Nabi and Rasul. –  Mohayemin Aug 23 '12 at 12:19
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Cloning is not prohibited so far we can't provide a verse or prophetic saying that opposes it directly. Anything that is cloned is also a creature of Allah s.w.t, the reason for this is not far fetched.

Are the cloners the providers of all the materials used for cloning? No and moreover it is an outcome of what has been told in Al-quran that we are created from halaq i.e leech. So, if a man can scientifically practice what it is discussed in our glorious book to make it clear that this book is truly from the lord of mankind why opposition then ?

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Welcome to Islam.SE we suggest you read the FAQ. Answers are expected to be supported by citations, currently your answer lacks citations. –  Mujahid مجاهد Oct 16 '12 at 21:35
    
I don't remember exactly, but there is a place where it is forbidden for doing painting of live creatures, as God says not create drawings of living things. So, cloning is a bigger part of it. –  mtk Nov 15 '12 at 13:49
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Found a hadith addressing creation:

Abu Zur'a reported: I visited the house of Marwan in the company of Abu Huraira and he found pictures there, whereupon he said: I heard Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: Allah, the Glorious and Exalted, said: Who is a more wrongdoer than one who tries to create creation like Mine creation. Let him create an atom or a grain of wheat or that of barley. This hadith has been transmitted on the authority of Abu Zur'a and he said: Abu Huraira went to the house of Sa'ld or Marwan which they had built in Medina and he (Abu Huraira) saw a painter who had been painting pictures in his house, whereupon he told that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) had said like this, but he made no mention of the words: "Let him create the grain of barley." [Sahih Muslim, Book 024, Hadith Number 5275]

It doesn't seem to be incredibly strong (as in it could be a misquote). The "Let him create a grain of barley" part, if true, would seem to be a challenge to do so, implying that it is not possible but would still be a sin to try.

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