An Iranian Perspective on the Conflict between Human Dignity and Surrogate Motherhood (Pages: 0-0)

Aramesh K *,


Surrogacy motherhood as a method of assisted reproduction is being widely practiced in Iran. The acceptance and legitimacy of this practice in the absence of pertinent rules and regulations is according to the Jurisprudential Decrees (Fatwas) obtained from some of the Shiite religious authorities. According to these Fatwas commercial surrogacy is being practiced in Iran. Commercial surrogacy in contrary to the altruistic version seems to be in conflict with the very concept of human dignity. Human dignity as a notion rooted in both secular and religious schools of thought can be regarded as a common platform of ideas among the main existing schools of moral philosophy and ethics. This concept can be relied on for reaching to common principles and norms among all these schools. According to the Shiite theology notions such as human dignity could have independent logical basis regardless of their roots in the Holy Scripture. Therefore human dignity can be considered as a concept which is found by reason and emphasized by the h1ure. However it seems that in the current jurisprudential discourse among religious scholars when the bioethical issues are being discussed more attention and observation to this principle is needed. In this article after a brief situation analysis of the current practice of surrogacy in Iran I will assess the jurisprudential and ethical views toward the altruistic and commercial surrogacy and will conclude that although the altruistic one is acceptable by both Shiite jurisprudence and medical ethics the commercial surrogacy because of its conflict with human dignity arises some major ethical concerns and a revision of jurisprudential decrees in this regard is necessary. Also I will argue that surrogate motherhood can be discussed as an example showing the necessity of the observance of the concept of human dignity in the future of Islamic bioethical jurisprudence.