Why Can’t We Benefit From the Human Body?

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org

Answered by Ustadh Salman Younas

Question: If one can not benefit from the human body then I don’t understand how blood transfusions or kidney transplants can be permitted because that is also benefiting from the body. Please let me know why we can not benefit from the human body?

Answer: Assalamu alaykum

The textual justification for this rule is the Qur’anic verse, “We have ennobled/honored the children of Adam.” (17:70) Classical scholars have mentioned that using any part of the human being as an item is contrary to this ennoblement. Therefore, it would not be permitted.

The exception to this rule that a number of scholars identified is in the case of necessity (darura). Thus, for example, blood transfusions would be permitted when there is (a) need to do so as determined by a medical professional and (b) no reasonable alternative available.

In conclusion, the default ruling is that all humans are ennobled by God. Using any part of the human body would be considered impermissible. The exception to this default ruling would be in cases of necessity based on the principle that, “necessity makes the prohibited lawful.”

Wassalam,
[Ustadh] Salman Younas

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Salman Younas graduated from Stony Brook University with a degree in Political Science and Religious Studies. After studying the Islamic sciences online and with local scholars in New York, Ustadh Salman moved to Amman. There he studies Islamic law, legal methodology, belief, hadith methodology, logic, Arabic, and tafsir.

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