Concepts, General Concepts, Side Feature

When the Mind becomes the Legislator, Confusions Prevails

Five years ago, Professor Miroslav Djordjevic, the world-leading genital reconstructive surgeon, received a patient at his Belgrade clinic. It was a transgender patient who had surgery at a different clinic to remove male genitalia – and since had a change of mind. That was the first time Djordjevic had ever been contacted to perform a so-called “reversal” surgery. Over the next six months, another six people also approached him, similarly wanting to reverse their procedures. (National Post)

As Muslims we believe that the human mind is limited in its knowledge of life. We also understand that the human mind is subjected to influences from its environment and therefore fickle in decision making. It is for these reasons why Muslims can’t consider the human mind to be able to come to absolute truths regarding to what should be seen as right or wrong or as good and bad as these will be ever changing and susceptible to making mistakes as to what will bring the individual and society goodness and happiness.

This idea directly results from our Aqeedah (life doctrine) which teaches us that we conclusively need to belief in Allah (swt) and what He has revealed to us through the Quran and His Messenger Muhammed ﷺ and that only through him do we learn what should be consider to be seen as right or wrong. We also learn that happiness is directly connected to following the guidelines regarding what is right and wrong as this will lead to seeking the pleasure of Allah which will lead to Muslims attaining happiness.

Linking this understanding to the findings of the above article, that there seems to be an increase of patients feeling an acute sense of regret after undergoing genital reconstructive surgery, is consequently something that shouldn’t actually come as a surprise for Muslims. As from an Islamic perspective these types of operations are considered to be forbidden/wrong (haram) and can never lead to success or happiness in this life or the next, based on the following:

It is proven in al-Saheeh that Abdullah ibn ‘Abbaas (ra) said: 

لعن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم المتشبهين من الرجال بالنساء، والمتشبهات من النساء بالرجال

The Messenger of Allah ﷺ cursed men who imitate women and women who imitate men. (al-Bukhari)

The news of people regretting their sex-change actually did seem to come as a shock to Professor Djordjevic interviewed in the article and an expert in genital reconstructive surgeon when he says: “It can be a real disaster to hear these stories”. “Those wishing the reversal, have spoken to him about crippling levels of depression following their transition and in some cases even contemplated suicide.” The doctor is worried about the increase in the amount of reversals being requested and also the lack of academic research on this topic. He raises his concerns on the procedures followed when deciding on these operations.

This is exactly what we would expect of someone looking at this subject from a very different life doctrine than the Islamic doctrine. The liberal secular way of life, a doctrine which is built upon compromise and the separation of religion from life. A doctrine which decides what is right or wrong, based on the benefit, which results from the action and which bases happiness on the attained pleasures one receives. Now that the benefit and the happiness attained by such an operation is under scrutiny, the whole idea about this procedure will have to be re-evaluated. This of course is something that the powerful transgender lobby doesn’t want to hear about as we can further read in the article which suggest that they are the main cause preventing universities from researching this phenomena. This because it smashes their whole rhetoric that these operations are compulsory to achieve happiness for these individuals.

It is necessary for Muslims today, especially for those living in the West to understand this subject thoroughly as they will face huge pressures to accept concepts such as transgender issues, homosexuality, sexual relationships outside marriage etc. as acceptable behaviour within a society.

Practically this means that these ideas will be practised and promoted within society as the individual’s right to pursue and fulfil their pleasure and happiness. They will present allowing these rights, as the mark of a modern, progressive, civilised, and just society or person and to not do so, as an unjust and backward society or individual.

When we as Muslims, understand the limited nature of the human mind, and the dangers of allowing it to dictate what is right and wrong, and that only Allah has full knowledge of what is best for individuals and society alike – then we will be able to reject these pressures to accept these concepts which clearly contradict with Islam.

وَأَنِ احْكُم بَيْنَهُم بِمَا أَنزَلَ اللَّهُ وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ أَهْوَاءَهُمْ وَاحْذَرْهُمْ أَن يَفْتِنُوكَ عَن بَعْضِ مَا أَنزَلَ اللَّهُ إِلَيْكَ فَإِن تَوَلَّوْا فَاعْلَمْ أَنَّمَا يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ أَن يُصِيبَهُم بِبَعْضِ ذُنُوبِهِمْ وَإِنَّ كَثِيرًا مِّنَ النَّاسِ لَفَاسِقُونَ

 “And that you should judge between them by what Allah has revealed, and do not follow their vain desires, and be cautious of them, lest they seduce you from part of what Allah has revealed to you; And if they turn away – then know that Allah only intends to afflict them with some of their [own] sins. And indeed, many among the people are defiantly disobedient.”

(Al-Maaida, 5:49)


Yasmin Malik

Member of the Central Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir