Area of Research
Lectures in the Netherlands and Belgium

As part of his work on the Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) Project on Genomics and Islamic Ethics, Dr. Mohammed Ghaly, Professor of Islam and Biomedical Ethics at CILE, is affiliated to the Erasmus School of Philosophy, Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) in the Netherlands. During his stay there he gave a couple of lectures at Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) and also another lecture at KU Leuven University in Belgium.

Details about the lectures:

 

  1. Thursday April 11, 12:00–13:00

Erasmus School of Philosophy, Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)

The “Gene” and Contemporary Muslim Scholars (Ulama)

Mohammed Ghaly

Professor of Islam and Biomedical Ethics

Research Center for Islamic Legislation & Ethics (CILE)

Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU), Qatar

 

Abstract

By the beginning of the 1990s, the concept of the gene and related disciplines, including genetics and genomics, became the subject of intensive discussions among Muslim religious scholars. This lecture will give an analytical and critical review of these discussions by addressing questions like: How did these religious scholars frame the concept of the gene from an Islamic perspective? What were the key ethical issues triggered by the gene and associated technologies, to which they gave priority in their discussions? How far were they aware of parallel discussions taking place in the West? How did these discussions influence, and get influenced by, healthcare policies in Muslim-majority countries? What are the main critiques directed to their discourse on these topics?

 

  1. April 25, 13:30-15:00

Erasmus Medical Center, Department of Medical Ethics, Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) 

Editing the Genes … Revisiting the Values:

Islamic Ethical Perspectives on Gene Editing

Mohammed Ghaly

Professor of Islam and Biomedical Ethics

Research Center for Islamic Legislation & Ethics (CILE)

Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU), Qatar

 

Abstract

Thanks to effective and cost-low technologies like CRISPR/Cas9, genes can now be “edited”. Using gene editing tools for modifying one’s genetic structure is not an exclusively scientific question because it triggers a set of complex ethical questions. This lecture will examine some of these questions from an Islamic ethical perspective. We will explain how providing answers for the direct questions raised by gene editing technologies eventually necessitates revisiting various values in Muslims’ “Moral World” related to ontological and epistemological issues like understanding human nature and determining the telos (objectives) of medicine. 

 

 

  1. Wednesday, April 24 (14:00-16:30)

KU Leuven University, Belgium

Islamic Law (fiqh) and Biomedical Ethics (in Dutch)

 

Abstract

The lecture will be given in Dutch. Here is the abstract in Dutch:

 

Islamitisch recht (fiqh) en biomedische ethiek

Gedurende de islamitische geschiedenis zijn moslimjuristen (fuqahaa’) toevertrouwd geweest met het beantwoorden van de religieuze vragen in allerlei aspecten van het leven van een moslim, inclusief degenen die betrekking hebben met gezondheid en ziekte. Op basis van erkende interpretatietechnieken van Koran en Soenna, hebben moslimjuristen aangetoond dat ze gestructureerde en goed onderbouwde antwoorden kunnen geven over wat (on)geoorloofd is in islam, ongeacht de aard van het besproken onderwerp.

De moderne wetenschappelijke en technologische revolutie heeft eigen morele uitdagingen teweegbracht. Unique en complexe vragen werden gesteld over oude concepten zoals het begin en het einde van het leven. Bovendien, produceert moderne wetenschap steeds nieuwe concepten, zoals genetische behandeling, stamcelonderzoek en klonen, die weer ingewikkelde vragen oproepen. Gezien hun historische rol, richtten individuele moslims zich tot moslimjuristen op zoek naar antwoorden voor deze nieuwe vragen. Maar tot hoe ver zijn hedendaagse moslimjuristen in staat om zulke vragen alleen te beantwoorden, en zo ja, hoe doen ze dat?

In deze lezing, gaat Dr. Ghaly zich focussen op drie hoofdvragen: (1) Wie zijn de moslimjuristen die zich bezighouden met de moderne bio-ethische vragen? (2) Wat voor methodes en interpretatietechnieken gebruiken deze juristen om oude teksten, zoals Koran en Soenna, te gebruiken als basisbronnen voor hun antwoorden op zulke modern vragen? (3) Wat zeggen de critici over de bijdrage van moslimjuristen aan biomedische ethiek en hoe kunnen deze kritiekpunten aangepakt worden in de toekomst?

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