Promoting or being involved in a one-way trip to the Red Planet is prohibited in Islam, a fatwa committee under the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowment in the UAE has ruled.
“Such a one-way journey poses a real risk to life, and that can never be justified in Islam,” the committee said. “There is a possibility that an individual who travels to planet Mars may not be able to remain alive there, and is more vulnerable to death.”
Whoever opts for this “hazardous trip”, the committee said, is likely to perish for no “righteous reason”, and thus will be liable to a “punishment similar to that of suicide in the Hereafter”.
The committee, presided by Professor Dr Farooq Hamada, said: “Protecting life against all possible dangers and keeping it safe is an issue agreed upon by all religions and is clearly stipulated in verse 4/29 of the Holy Quran: Do not kill yourselves or one another. Indeed, Allah is to you ever Merciful.”
Late in April 2013, Mars One, a Dutch company, invited volunteers to fly and live on the Red Planet, but there is no technology so far that would enable a return trip from Mars to Earth. The company is planning the first such trip to Mars in 2023 and another crew every two years afterwards with the goal of establishing a permanent human colony.
The applicants must be aged between 18 and 40 years and in good physical condition. They have to pay only $38 for the trip. Thousands of volunteers, including some 500 Saudis and other Arabs, have reportedly applied for the mission which costs $6 billion. The committee indicated that some may be interested in travelling to Mars for escaping punishment or standing before Almighty Allah for judgment.
“This is an absolutely baseless and unacceptable belief because not even an atom falls outside the purview of Allah, the Creator of everything. This has also been clearly underscored in verse 19&20/93 of the Holy Quran in which Allah says: There is no one in the heavens and earth but that he comes to the Most Merciful as a servant. (Indeed) He has enumerated them and counted them a (full) counting.”
Echoing the same, Islamic researcher Dr Shaikh Mohammed Al Ashmawy said there is no debate in this issue. “Almighty Allah said in verse 2/195 in the Holy Quran: Do not throw yourselves with your own hands into destruction.”
Sheikh Mohammed Yusuf, Imam of the Amena mosque, said: “Man’s life is not his or her own property; it is God’s creation, and therefore suicide is prohibited in all religions, and of course by law.” Source: Khaaleejtimes.com
As Jyothisi, we promote the practice of the religion of one's birth, and firmly hold that all religions are paths to the One True Divinity, the source of all life. We do not offer the above citation of fatwa in any predjudice. The media of course, engages in cheers, sneers and jeers. Would that they read Rumi or practice in the five pillars of Islam, there would be less of sneering.
In fact, it is expected over time that there will be human settlements on the Moon, in addition to Mars. Other planets are of course hotter (the surface temperature on Venus is 864 degrees by celsius) and colder on all the planets past Mars. Astronomers and scientist seek exoplanets and like planets to Earth for research and comparison. So much of our early science fiction and fantasy, so many of our movies like the Star Wars saga, depict life on different planets with different conditions. It seems as if the authors, scriptwriters and movie makers are all recalling matters from other lives, other dimensions.
Any Muslim longing for the Martian landscape should dispel those dreams, according to clerics in the United Arab Emirates. Image source: talkingpointsmemo
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