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Islam and evolution

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  • Islam and evolution

    There are many references to science and the Quran. That science is revered in science, and yes much of the origins of the philosophy of science in the modern world began in Medieval Islam. The problem I have concerns evolution. What I find is that in Islam today there is an inconsistencies and the lack of consensus concerning whether evolution of life and humanity is true.

    Are there any Muslims still on Tweb? I would like to hear what they have to say.
    Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
    Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
    But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

    go with the flow the river knows . . .

    Frank

    I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

  • #2
    My opinion is that the Quran mentions natural (biological,physical...etc) phenomenon that happens to match or at least not contradict what science has to say.....the Quran was never a science text or meant to be read as one. Rather, natural phenomenon are "revelations" by God just as the Quran is...in other words, both are ayat (signs) pointing to God. Both need to be interpreted.

    Today Christian Creationism is influencing Muslims. General evolution does not particularly contradict the Quran, but today there is some controversy about human evolution. The Quran can be interpreted to support both evolutionary and non-evolutionary camp. IMO, most Muslims are generally neutral on the issue but creationism (human) is having some influence.

    IMO, being in either camp does not impact Islam/Quran overall except for the question "what is human"---because to be "human" is to have a responsibility to God (trusteeship/Khalifa). Since all knowledge is from God (revelation) it can impact our understanding of God...so as we grow in knowledge, we get a better grasp of the Quran and of God.......at least those are my thoughts....

    I am looking for a video about Islam and evolution conference---if I remember correctly, the audience remained neutral after the speeches. will post after I find it.

    Comment


    • #3
      the video is very long...apologies...start at 19:30....

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbynBJVTWKI

      Comment


      • #4
        The controversy concerning evolution today in Christianity and Islam is an unfortunate weakness with ancient Revelations in relating to the modern world. I studied Islam as well as Christianity and Judaism, and found them wanting in many aspect, and the acceptance of evolution and science without theological presuppositions. The guidance should unequivocal acceptance of science. Prior to the 1800's Islam and to a lesser extent consistent Christianity embraced science without controversy and advanced the interests of science. But since controversy concerning evolution has divided Christianity and Islam, and even controversy among more conservative Jews of Israel.

        This and other problems of disunity, conflict between religions lead me to the conclusion that 'IF' there is a God the more universal view, including the harmony of science and religion, I became a Baha'i.
        Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
        Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
        But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

        go with the flow the river knows . . .

        Frank

        I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

        Comment


        • #5
          I don't know much about the Baha'i faith---perhaps we will have an opportunity to discuss it? Your perspective about Islam and science is interesting but I do not agree completely---though it is partially correct.....

          IMO, the presumption that (Western) Science is based on today is of naturalism (Naturalism is "the philosophical belief that everything arises from natural properties and causes, and supernatural or spiritual explanations are excluded or discounted."). Islamic Science was based on the premise of Tawheed (Unity)---that all causes arise from God---and science, like the Quran, was a type of knowledge that came from God so that humanity would know God better. From an Islamic perspective, naturalism has replaced God/Allah thus giving rise to another "god"---which falls into the category of shirk. Nevertheless, the Quran says that truth stands out from error and the conclusions that science brings will stand if they are the truth. So, Muslims do not have a problem with science. Nor with evolution in general---the controversy is limited to the evolution of Man. (and in my opinion...some of it may simply be misunderstandings of the theory of evolution......?....)

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by siam View Post
            I don't know much about the Baha'i faith---perhaps we will have an opportunity to discuss it? Your perspective about Islam and science is interesting but I do not agree completely---though it is partially correct.....

            IMO, the presumption that (Western) Science is based on today is of naturalism (Naturalism is "the philosophical belief that everything arises from natural properties and causes, and supernatural or spiritual explanations are excluded or discounted."). Islamic Science was based on the premise of Tawheed (Unity)---that all causes arise from God---and science, like the Quran, was a type of knowledge that came from God so that humanity would know God better. From an Islamic perspective, naturalism has replaced God/Allah thus giving rise to another "god"---which falls into the category of shirk. Nevertheless, the Quran says that truth stands out from error and the conclusions that science brings will stand if they are the truth. So, Muslims do not have a problem with science. Nor with evolution in general---the controversy is limited to the evolution of Man. (and in my opinion...some of it may simply be misunderstandings of the theory of evolution......?....)
            The Baha'i Faith in concept supports Methodological Naturalism in that Science simply independently explores and investigates the physical nature of our existence. The Baha'i principle the 'Independent Investigation of Truth' applies here. It is a from of Revelation of the knowledge of God's Creation, and scripture, including Baha'i scripture must be understood in the light of the advancing knowledge of science. In this view evolution is simply the scientific explanation of the processes of Creation of life and humanity.

            The primary role of religion is the guidance of the applied sciences and technology for the benefit of humanity.

            Atheists and many agnostics believe in Philosophical Naturalism, because they believe that science is able to explain our physical existence without Theological assumption, and atheist claim to that there is no reason to believe, It is misleading to think that atheist claim that it is proven that God does not exist.
            Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
            Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
            But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

            go with the flow the river knows . . .

            Frank

            I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
              The controversy concerning evolution today in Christianity and Islam is an unfortunate weakness with ancient Revelations in relating to the modern world. ...
              I think the weakness lies rather in an inadequate appreciation of and hermeneutical approach to ancient texts, and an inadequate theology of revelation, which imagines that revelation can be adequately characterized in propositional or textual forms.
              βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
              ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

              אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by robrecht View Post
                I think the weakness lies rather in an inadequate appreciation of and hermeneutical approach to ancient texts, and an inadequate theology of revelation, which imagines that revelation can be adequately characterized in propositional or textual forms.
                This is a possibility, but a very human constraint, and leaves a great deal to human fallibility where Revelation fails to provide the guidance.
                Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                go with the flow the river knows . . .

                Frank

                I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                  This is a possibility, but a very human constraint, and leaves a great deal to human fallibility where Revelation fails to provide the guidance.
                  Personally, I think it is best to stay away from the concept of infallibility when referring to texts written by human beings, even those written by the Bahá'u'lláh.
                  βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
                  ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

                  אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by robrecht View Post
                    Personally, I think it is best to stay away from the concept of infallibility when referring to texts written by human beings, even those written by the Bahá'u'lláh.
                    I have made no reference to infallibility of any writings in this thread. Please reread my previous post, and infallibility is not the issue here as to the nature of Divine guidance from scripture I am referring to. My reference here is the lack of guidance in the Christian and Islamic Revelation concerning science that has lead to disunity and division on the issue evolution.

                    Again . . .

                    'This is a possibility, but a very human constraint, and leaves a great deal to human fallibility where Revelation fails to provide the guidance.'
                    Last edited by shunyadragon; 12-08-2014, 03:24 PM.
                    Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                    Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                    But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                    go with the flow the river knows . . .

                    Frank

                    I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                      I have made no reference to infallibility of any writings in this thread. Please reread my previous post, and infallibility is not the issue here as to the nature of Divine guidance from scripture I am referring to. My reference here is the lack of guidance in the Christian and Islamic Revelation concerning science that has lead to disunity and division on the issue evolution.

                      Again . . .

                      'This is a possibility, but a very human constraint, and leaves a great deal to human fallibility where Revelation fails to provide the guidance.'
                      When you refer to "weakness with ancient Revelations," and more specifically to "the Christian and Islamic Revelation," are you not referring to ancient texts? Or do you have a more expansive idea of what constitutes Christian and Islamic revelation? If the latter, please explain?
                      βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
                      ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

                      אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by robrecht View Post
                        When you refer to "weakness with ancient Revelations," and more specifically to "the Christian and Islamic Revelation," are you not referring to ancient texts? Or do you have a more expansive idea of what constitutes Christian and Islamic revelation? If the latter, please explain?
                        As far as what is considered Revelation in Christian and Islamic religions it is the sacred texts, beyond that there is inconsistent division and contention between and among Christian and Muslims as to what is Divine guidance and Revelation.

                        The issue of accepting science and evolution without theological conditions and reservations is the issue at hand that divides Christians and Muslims.
                        Last edited by shunyadragon; 12-08-2014, 04:01 PM.
                        Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                        Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                        But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                        go with the flow the river knows . . .

                        Frank

                        I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                          As far as what is considered Revelation in Christian and Islamic religions it is the sacred texts, beyond that there is inconsistent division and contention between and among Christian and Muslims as to what is Divine guidance and Revelation.

                          The issue of accepting science and evolution without theological conditions and reservations is the issue at hand that divides Christians and Muslims.
                          And when you think of Baha'i Revelation being superior to Christian and Islamic revelation, are you thinking of something in addition to what is contained in the Baha'i sacred scriptures? And, if so, what?
                          βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
                          ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

                          אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by robrecht View Post
                            And when you think of Baha'i Revelation being superior to Christian and Islamic revelation,
                            Yes, it is obvious as the sky is blue on a clear day on the fourth of July that when one chooses a faith, you believe it is the right choice. If I believed Christianity was the superior I would choose Christianity, If I believed Islam was the one I would choose Islam.

                            . . . are you thinking of something in addition to what is contained in the Baha'i sacred scriptures? And, if so, what?
                            No, the Harmony of science and religion is in the scripture of the Baha'i Faith. It is one of the primary principles of the Baha'i Faith.
                            Last edited by shunyadragon; 12-08-2014, 08:53 PM.
                            Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
                            Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
                            But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

                            go with the flow the river knows . . .

                            Frank

                            I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by shunyadragon View Post
                              The Baha'i Faith in concept supports Methodological Naturalism in that Science simply independently explores and investigates the physical nature of our existence. The Baha'i principle the 'Independent Investigation of Truth' applies here. It is a from of Revelation of the knowledge of God's Creation, and scripture, including Baha'i scripture must be understood in the light of the advancing knowledge of science. In this view evolution is simply the scientific explanation of the processes of Creation of life and humanity.

                              The primary role of religion is the guidance of the applied sciences and technology for the benefit of humanity.

                              Atheists and many agnostics believe in Philosophical Naturalism, because they believe that science is able to explain our physical existence without Theological assumption, and atheist claim to that there is no reason to believe, It is misleading to think that atheist claim that it is proven that God does not exist.
                              From the Islamic perspective a scientist can independently explore physical nature using methodology---that is not the issue---the issue is of interpretation. If ALL knowledge is from God, including scriptural and scientific---then taking God out of the equation means starting off with an incomplete hypothesis---which then leads to incomplete conclusions. However, Islam also allows for various interpretations---so there is no problem with secular science. As such, there is no problem with the theory of evolution or the various other theories of science---the only small problem is the theory of human evolution---and even then---it is not the methodology/evidence that is the problem---only the interpretation/conclusion drawn from the facts/evidence. In my opinion, this is not yet a big issue---it can be resolved. Generally, the Muslim view is that if the Quran is not understood---it is because of lack of knowledge and if God is the Revealer of knowledge then in his own time he will reveal whatever is necessary to further our knowledge and in the meantime it is best to wait and say "God knows best". And while creationist ideas concerning human evolution are making substantial inroads into Islam---there are also a large number of Muslims who are neutral about evolution and taking a wait-and-see attitude.

                              There are many forms of knowledge---science is the knowledge of the "seen" and scripture is knowledge of the "unseen"---both are complementary and together to deepen our understanding of God.
                              If we take God out of scripture and science---then we simply have an understanding of "text" and "phenomenon"---not God. Not that there is anything wrong with such an understanding---only that it is incomplete. However, the greater problem is not of an incomplete understanding---but an incorrect understanding. According to Islam---all "nature" (Universe, earth...etc) is a creation of the ONE God and follows God's laws. If a secular scientist substitutes God with an abstract all powerful "Nature" and God's laws with "Natural Laws" that are created by "Nature"---then such a person has substituted "God" for a similar concept but called it "Nature". This is called Shirk(Division) in Islam---it is to give powers that rightfully belong to God to another (man-made) entity.(---in this case---one that is called "Nature")
                              The central principle in Islam is Tawheed(Unity)=ONE God and it is "The Truth". In other words, theories and perspectives that align with Tawheed are aligned with The Truth---those that do not are falsehood.

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