THE AUTHOR & BOOKS:
Brigadier Aftab Ahmad Khan (Retired), is an ardent student of Semitic religions. After retirement form military he is dedicated to research and writing with broader and pragmatic perspective. A graduate of Command & Staff College Quetta and PakistanAirWarCollege also attended a course in USA. He has held various command, staff and instructional appointments. In the quest for knowledge he completed Masters in Business Administration as well in Political Science. After retirement from military he also served in corporate sector in multinational environments. He closely observed various cultures during his world wide travels which include North America, Europe, Middle East, China, Far East and Australia. He articles are regularly published (www.defencejournal.com). The research work has been compiled in the form of following books, being published in same sequence, freely made available for the benefit of humanity (people of all faiths & cultures):
1. The Creator
2. The Creation
3. The Guidance
4. Islam: The Broader Perspective
5. The Final Messenger & Scripture
6. The Last Prophet (pbuh) [selected articles]
7. Islam: A General Introduction (edited and updated translation of: “Ta’rif-e-Aam Bi-Din Il-Islam” by: Sheikh Ali al-Tantawi).
8. Significance of Knowledge
9. Philosophy & Impact
10. Jesus: Christianity & Bible
11. Islam- Jews & Christians (People of the Book)
12. The Fundamentals of Islam
13. Metaphysics [Invisible world, predestination]
14. Modern Challenges
15. Islam and Society
16. The Infallible Imamate
PUBLICATION, translation and reproduction of books by Aftab Ahmad Khan, in full or in part on non commercial basis is permitted subject to following:
v The contents should not be altered to mean what is not intended to be meant by the author. It will be appreciated if the author is also informed. The law of the land is fully respected and not violated.
v The reference of the author, e mail, web sites, blog is mentioned:
In the name of God, The Most Gracious, The most Merciful
The religions generally emphasize the dogmas and rituals of worship, while advocating high morals; but Islam is unique, it is the complete way of life, (Din), encompassing spiritual, as well as social, political, economic and all other aspects of human life for peace and security. Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) did not introduce any new faith, God chose him for reviving and culminating the original faith for all the humanity till eternity. It is based upon attainment of peace through total surrender to the ‘Will of God’ (Islam), preached by all the previous messengers, to their respective communities. Islam is, rooted in Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him), the common ancestor of Jews, Christians and Muslims.
The recent upsurge in the militancy and violence against oppression and foreign occupation in some Muslim lands has been incorrectly labeled as ‘Islamic Terrorism’. Terrorism is not restricted to any one religion. Such movements are, akin to any other armed movement like, in Spain (Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) Euzkadi Ta Askatasuna), South Africa (armed struggle by ANC during apartheid regime), Sri Lanka (Tamil Tigers), Northern Ireland (IRA), Georgia (Abkhazia & South Ossetia), India (Nagaland, Mezoram), Hutu and Tutsi conflict in Rwanda and Burundi, Mexico (EZLN: Zapatista National Liberation Army), Kurdish separatists movement in Turkey and Iraq (among Muslims). ‘Ku Klux Klan’ the Whites racist terrorist organizations against blacks, operating in the U.S.A since 1865. The Baader-Meinhof gang of West Germany (1968-92), the Japanese Red Army, Italy’s Red Brigades, the Puerto Rican FALN, the Shining Path of Peru, France’s Direct Action., Zionist Irgun Zvai Leumi (National Military Organization), Stern Gang, (Lohame Herut Yisra‘el, “Fighters for the Freedom of Israel”) and Haganah, were among the most prominent terrorist groups of the later 20th century. The Christian Templars (1119-1312) of Crusaders period had religious fervor. The terrorist activities mostly target the innocent civilians: the suicide bombing by Tamil Tigers, poisonous gas attack by Japanese terrorists (Aum Shinrikyo - mixed Buddhist dominated movement) in the Tokyo subway in 1996 and deadly Oklahoma bombing in the United States in1995 by Americans ex servicemen, 9/11 attack against Twin Towers in N.Y and London subway bombing, are some examples. The out of proportion use of brute force and firepower by Israelis against unarmed Palestinians, US and allies against civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan and killing of protesting Kashmiri civilians by Indian forces are forms of state terrorism.
Islam is misunderstood due to many fallacies, which exist among Christians, non Muslims and even amongst some Muslims about Islam. The main reasons contributing towards these delusions are; historic, geopolitical, social, cultural, economic, religious and lack of understanding of Islam, and its values due to restricted and subjective view. Attributing every wrong act performed by Muslims, to Islam is not fair. Islam is the religion of ‘Peace’ literally and from core, it does not preach violence or suicide, the killing of innocent people is considered as a crime against humanity.(Qur’an:4:29, 5:32, 17:33). The legitimate warfare by the state is to be conducted strictly within laid down limits.(Qur’an:2:216,190-193, 60:8-9).
A modest endeavor has been made to present the broader perspective of Islam by synthesizing the works of great scholars, published in the form of my articles, now being compiled in the form of series of books, “The Creation” is the 2nd one. It is recommended to first read the appendices. No human work can claim to be perfect, Imam Shafa’i, was very right in saying : “I am convinced about the authenticity of my opinions, but I do consider it likely that they may turn out to be incorrect. Likewise, I am convinced about the incorrectness of the views different from mine, but I do admit the possibility that they may turn out to be correct.” Error or omissions if any, are incidental for which forgiveness from Allah is sought: “Our Lord! Do not punish us if we forget or make a mistake.”(Qur’an;2:286).
Brigadier Aftab Ahmad Khan(R)
MA, MBA, LADSC (USA)
19 January, 2009
TABLE OF CONTENTS
1: INTRODUCTION & MYTHS
2: MODERN THEORIES OF CREATION
3: THE GRAND DESIGN
4: HUMAN CREATION & TRIAL
5: THEORY OF EVOLUTION
6: CREATION IN ESSENCE
THE TRADITIONAL NARRATIVES
THE TRADITIONAL NARRATIVES
“It is God Who has created the heavens, the earth and all that is between them in six eons, then firmly established Himself on the Throne of Authority..”(Qur’an;32:4). “For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is,”(Exodus;20:11), “..the heavens and the earth were once one entity, then We split them asunder? And We have created every living thing from water..”(Qur’an;21:30);“… Allah created the heavens and the earth and all that lies between them for a just reason and for a specified time..”(Qur’an;30:8).“And We created not the heavens and the earth, and all that is between them, in play.”(Qur’an;44:38);“We shall surely test your steadfastness with fear and famine, with loss of property, life and produce. Give good news to those who endure with patience.” (Qur’an;2:155).
Man has always been inquisitive about the origin and creation of universe to which earth is just a small part. The whole cosmic system of matter and energy is called universe. Its main constituents are the galaxies, within which are stars and stellar groupings and nebulae. Earth’s Sun is one star among the billions of stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. All atoms, subatomic particles, and everything they compose are also part of the universe. The universe is governed by four fundamental forces: the strong force, the weak force, the electromagnetic force, and gravitation. The term creation refers to the beginning of things, whether by the will and act of a transcendent being, by emanation from some ultimate source, or in any other way. The fact remains that even with advancement in science and technology the scientists have not yet been able to resolve the mystery of Creation. Scientists have however proposed a number of theories about the origin and structure of the universe, the most prominent theories are; the ‘Big Bang’, ‘Expanding Universe’ and ‘Steady-State Theory’. While even the expanse of universe still remains a mystery, the thinkers and theologians have also evolved their own concepts and doctrine of creation of universe based on their imagination, knowledge and superstition. This resulted in evolution of many myths in different cultures but, their theories still remain speculative. While most of Creation myths do not stand the scientific test, however the Revelations given to messengers of God, specially mentioned in Qur’an, the last scripture, stand up to the known scientific hypothesis of creation. Doctrines of creation are philosophical and theological elaborations of the primal traditional narratives of creation (myths) within a religious community. The term myth here refers to the imaginative expression in narrative form of what is experienced or apprehended as basic reality. The story of creation is the symbolic narrative of the beginning of the world as understood by a particular community. The later doctrines of creation are interpretations of this myth in light of the subsequent history and needs of the community. Thus, for example, all theology and thought concerning creation in the Abrahamic rooted faiths are based on the Revealed narrative of creation in the biblical book of Genesis and the last book of guidance, the Qur’an.
Common Myths of Creation & Narratives:
The traditional narratives of creation (or myths) refer to the process through which the world is centered and given a definite form within the whole of reality. The cosmogonic (origin of the world) myth is the myth par excellence. In this sense, the myth is akin to philosophy, but, unlike philosophy, it is constituted by a system of symbols; and because it is the basis for any subsequent cultural thought, it contains rational and nonrational forms. There is an order and structure to the myth, but this order and structure is not to be confused with rational, philosophical order and structure. The myth possesses its own distinctive kind of order. The cosmogonic myth tells the story of the creation of the world, it is never simply etiological, for it deals with the ultimate origin of all things. The cosmogonic myth thus has a pervasive structure; its expression in the form of philosophical and theological thought is only one dimension of its function as a model for cultural life. According to the Self Emergence myth: The creation seems to emerge through its own inner power from under the earth. In this genre of myth, the created order emerges gradually in continuous stages. It is similar to a birth or metamorphosis of the world from its embryonic state to maturity. The symbolism of the earth or a part of the earth as a repository of all potential form is prominent in this type of myth. In some myths of this type (e.g., the Navajo myth of emergence), the movement from a lower stage to a higher one is initiated by some fault of the people who live under the earth, but these faults are only the parallels of an automatic upper movement in the earth itself. Closely related to the same type of narrative is the myth that states that the world is created as the progeny of a primordial mother and father, called ‘World Parents’. The mother and father are symbols of earth and sky, respectively. In myths of this kind, the world parents generally appear at a late stage of the creation process; chaos in some way exists before the coming into being of the world parents. According to ‘Cosmic Egg’ tradition, the creation deity begins the act of creation by placing two embryonic sets of twins in an egg. In each set of twins is a male and female; during the maturation process they are together thus forming androgynous beings. In a Tahitian myth, the creator deity himself lives alone in a shell. After breaking out of the shell, he creates his counterpart, and together they undertake the work of creation. A Japanese creation narrative likens the primordial chaos to an egg containing the germs of creation. In the Hindu tradition the creation of the world is symbolized in the Chandogya Upanisad by the breaking of an egg, and the universe is referred to as an egg in other sources. The Buddhists speak of the transcending of ordinary existence, the realization of a new mode of being, as breaking the shell of the egg. Similar references to creation through the symbol of the egg are found in the Orphic texts of the Greeks and in Chinese myths. The egg is a symbol of the totality from which all creation comes. It is like a womb containing the seeds of creation. Within the egg are the possibilities of a perfect creation (i.e., the creation of androgynous beings). The egg, in addition to being the beginning of life, is equally a symbol of procreation, rebirth, and new life. In a version of the Dogon, one of the twins returns to the egg in order to resuscitate the other.
The myths of ‘Earth Divers’ have two important elements: Firstly, the theme of the cosmogonic water representing the undifferentiated waters that are present before the earth has been created. Secondly, there is an animal who plunges into the water to secure a portion of earth. The importance of the animal is that the creature agent is a prehuman species. This version of the myth is probably the oldest version of this genre. This basic structure of the earth-diver myth has been modified in central Europe in myths that relate the story of the primordial waters, God, and the devil. In these versions of the earth-diver myth, the devil appears as God’s companion in the creation of the world. The devil becomes the diver sent by God to bring earth from the bottom of the waters. In most versions of this myth, God does not appear to be omniscient or omnipotent, often depending on the knowledge of the devil for certain details regarding the creative act, details that he learns through tricks he plays upon the devil. In still different versions of this myth, the relationship between God and the devil moves from companionship to antagonism; they become adversaries, though they remain as co-creators of the world. The fact that the devil has had a part in the creation of the world is one way of explaining the origin and persistence of evil in the world. Mircea Eliade, a noted 20th-century historian of religions, has pointed to another theme in certain Romanian versions of this myth. After God has instructed the devil to dive to the bottom of the waters and bring up the earth, the devil obeys, diving several times before he is able to bring up and hold on to a small portion of earth. After the creation of the world from this small portion of earth, God sinks into a profound sleep. This sleep is a sign of mental exhaustion, for only the devil and a bee know the solution to certain details of the creation, and God must, with the help of the bee, trick the devil into giving him this vital information. God’s sleep, according to Eliade, is a sign of his passivity and disinterest in the world after it has been created, and it harks back to certain archaic myths in which the supreme deity retires from the world after its creation, becoming disinterested and passive in the relationship to his work.
Creation by the ‘Supreme Creator’ is a popular doctrine among many cultures, specially among the Abrahamic faiths in its own distinct way. Though the precise nature and characteristics of the supreme creator deity may differ from culture to culture, a specific and pervasive structure of this type of deity can be discerned. The six main characteristics tend to be common: Firstly; He is all wise and all powerful. The world comes into being because of His wisdom, and He is able to actualize the world because of his power. Secondly; The deity exists alone prior to the creation of the world. There is no being or thing prior to His existence. No explanation can therefore be given of His existence, before which one confronts the ultimate mystery. Thirdly; The mode of creation is conscious, deliberate, and orderly. This again is an aspect of the Creator’s wisdom and power. The creation comes about because the deity seems to have a definite plan in mind and does not create on a trial-and-error basis. In Genesis, for example, particular parts of the world are created seriatim; in an Egyptian myth, Kheper, the creator deity, says, “I planned in my heart,” and in a Maori myth the creator deity proceeds from inactivity to increasing stages of activity. Fourthly; The creation of the world is simultaneously an expression of the freedom and purpose of the deity. His mode of creation defines the pattern and purpose of all aspects of the creation, though the deity is not bound by his creation. His relationship to the created order after the creation is again an aspect of his freedom. Fifthly; In several creation myths of this type, the creator deity removes himself from the world after it has been created. After the creation the deity goes away and only appears again when a catastrophe threatens the created order. Sixthly; The supreme creator deity is often a ‘sky god’, and the deity in this form is an instance of the religious valuation of the symbolism of the sky. In creation myths of the above type, the creation itself or the intent of the creator deity is to create a perfect world, paradise. Before the end of the creative act or sometime soon after the end of creation, the created order or the intent of the creator deity is thwarted by some fault of one of the creatures. There is thus a rupture in the creation narrative. In some traditions this rupture is the cause of the departure of the deity from creation.
In Greek philosophy and theology, ‘Logos’ is used to stands for the divine reason that orders the cosmos and gives it form and meaning. The Greek word ‘logos’ means; “word,” “reason,” “plan”. The concept is found in the writings of Heracleitus (540-480BC) and in Persian, Indian, and Egyptian philosophical and theological systems as well. In the cosmology of Heracleitus, fire forms the basic material principle of an orderly universe: he called the world order an “ever-living fire kindling in measures and being extinguished in measures,” and he extended fire’s manifestations to include the ether in the upper atmosphere. The persistence of unity despite change is illustrated by his famous analogy of the river: “Upon those who step into the same rivers, different and ever different waters flow down.” Plato later took Heracleitus to mean that all things are in constant flux, regardless of how they appear to the senses. Later, the Stoics defined the ‘logos’ as an active, rational and spiritual principle that permeated all reality. The Greek-speaking Jewish philosopher, Judaeus Philo of Alexandria (15 BC-45 CE), taught that the ‘logos’ was the intermediary between God and the cosmos, being both the agent between God and the cosmos, being both the agent of creation and the agent through which the human mind can comprehend God. The writings of Philo were preserved and cherished by the Church, and provided the inspiration for a sophisticated Christian philosophical theology. He departed from Platonic thought regarding the ‘logos’ (Word) and called it “the first-begotten Son of God”. Hence in Christian theology, ‘Logos’ is used to describe the role of Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) as the principle of God active in the creation and ordering of the cosmos and in the revelation of the divine plan of salvation. The divinity of Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) is claimed from interpretation of verses from Gospel according to John: “In the beginning was the ‘Word’, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God....And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth...” (John;1:1&14). It is to be kept in view that, these statements were not made by Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him), nor were they attributed to him by the author of the Gospel according to John. Consequently, these verses do not constitute evidence for Jesus’ divinity, especially considering the doubts held by Christian scholars about the Fourth Gospel. The Greek term used by the anonymous author of the Fourth Gospel for “word” is ‘logos’. In doing so, the author identifies Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) with the pagan ‘logos’ of Greek philosophy, who was the divine reason implicit in the cosmos, ordering it and giving it form and meaning. The identification of Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) with the ‘logos’, was further developed in the early Church as a result of attempts made by early Christian theologians and apologists to express the Christian faith in terms that would be intelligible to the Hellenistic world. Moreover, it was to impress their hearers with the view that Christianity was superior to, or heir to, all that was best in pagan philosophy. Thus, in their apologies and polemical works, the early Christian Fathers stated that Christ was the preexistent ‘logos’. The Greek word for ‘God’ used in the phrase “and the Word was with God,” is the definite form ‘hotheos’, meaning ‘The God’. However, in the second phrase “and the Word was God”, the Greek word used for ‘God’ is the indefinite form ‘tontheos’, which means ‘a god’. Consequently, John;1:1, should more accurately be translated, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was a god.” Therefore, if the Word was a ‘god’ in the literal sense, it would mean that there were two Gods and not one. However, in Biblical language, the term ‘god’ is used metaphorically to indicate power. For example, Paul referred to the devil as “god” in 2nd Corinthians;4:4. Moses is also referred to as “god” (messenger) in Exodus;7:1. Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) has also been clearly mentioned as a man and messenger of God: “Ye men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God unto you by mighty works and wonders and signs which God did by him in the midst of you, even as ye yourselves know”(Acts;2:22).
Miraculous birth of Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) through ‘Word from God’ has been mentioned in Qur’an: “When the angels said “O Mary! God gives you the good news through a Word from Him (kalimah min -hu) that you will be given a son: his name will be Messiah, (Jesus Christ) the son of Mary...”(Qur’an;3:45); “She said: “O my Lord! how shall I have a son when no man hath touched me?” He said: “Even so: Allah creates what He Wills; whenever He decides to do anything, He only says (word) it to ‘Be’ and it is!.”(Qur’an;3:47). Similarly, the act of creation is also mentioned in Bible: “And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.”(Genisis;1:3); “And God said, Let the waters swarm with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven”(Genisis;1:20). Hence the Word from God implies ‘order of creation’ by God through His ‘word’ or ‘Command’ or ‘announcement’. It is also mentioned in Qur’an: “..The Christ Jesus, son of Mary, was but God’s Apostle – (the fulfillment of) His promise which He had conveyed (kalimah, “word”) unto Mary - and a soul created by Him….”(Qur’an;4:171); “To Him is due the primal origin of the heavens and the earth: when He decrees a matter, He saith to it: “Be,” and it is.(Qur’an;2:117.); “And Our command is but a single (Act),- like the twinkling of an eye.”(Qur’an;54:50). The word or command of God can not be equated with God as the Revelations to the messengers are words of God but not God. Thus the ‘Word’ is of God, it is His but not Him. If Mr. X says ‘pen’, the word ‘pen’ is the word by Mr. X but ‘pen’ is not Mr. X himself !
MODERN THEORIES OF CREATION
MODERN THEORIES OF CREATION
The scientists, despite all the advancement in science and technology, so far have not been able to ascertain the precise process of creation of universe with certainty. The research still devolves around models and theories, which may be termed as ‘Scientific Myths’. In early 20th century, the discoveries of famous scientist Hubble and Einstein taken together gave rise to a new worldview. The new cosmology gave empirical validation to the notion of a creation event; it assigned a numerical estimate for when the arrow of time first took flight; and it eventually led to the breathtaking idea that everything in the universe could have arisen from literally nothing. The most popular scientific models of creation of universe are; The ‘Big-Bang Model’ and ‘Steady-State Theory’.
The Russian meteorologist and mathematician Aleksandr Friedmann (1888–1925) developed the theory of ‘Model Universe’ in 1922. He hypothesized a ‘Big Bang’ followed by expansion, then contraction and an eventual ‘Big Crunch’. His model supposes a closed universe, but similar solutions involve an open universe (which expands infinitely) or a flat universe (in which expansion continues infinitely but gradually approaches a rate of zero). The widely held theory of the origin of the universe, thus revolve around this ‘Big-Bang Model’, which holds that the universe emerged from a state of extremely high temperature and density in an explosive expansion 10 to 15 billion years ago. [“Have not the unbelievers ever considered that the skies and the earth were once one mass, then We split them asunder?”(Qur’an;21:30); “Then He turned towards the sky, which was but smoke, He said to it and to the earth: ‘Come forward both of you, willingly or unwillingly,’ and they submitted: ‘We shall come willing’”(Qur’an;41:11); “He has raised the heaven on high and created the balance:”(Qur’an;55:7)]. Its two basic assumptions—that Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity correctly describes the gravitational interaction of all matter and that an observer’s view of the universe does not depend on direction of observation or on location—make it possible to calculate physical conditions in the universe back to a very early time called the Planck time. According to the model proposed by George Gamow in the 1940s, the universe expanded rapidly from a highly compressed early state, with a steady decrease in density and temperature. Within seconds, matter predominated over antimatter and certain nuclei formed. [“We command but once and Our will is done in the twinkling of an eye”(Qur’an;4:50)]. It took another million years before atoms could form and electromagnetic radiation could travel through space unimpeded. The abundances of hydrogen, helium, and lithium and the discovery of cosmic background radiation support the model, which also explains the redshifts of the light from distant galaxies as resulting from the expansion of space. The possibility exists that other relics from the early universe may eventually be discovered. The current understanding of the state of the universe is based on ‘Expanding Universe’ model. It is based on the finding that all galaxies are moving away from each other. [“.. He has subjected the sun and the moon to follow His law, each pursuing its course for an appointed term..” (Qur’an;31:29)]. Application of general relativity to cosmology, along with the detection of redshifted light coming from galaxies outside the Milky Way Galaxy, led to the realization in the 1920s that all galaxies are receding. It is unknown whether the universe will expand indefinitely (open universe) or eventually collapse (closed universe) into an extremely dense, congested state, as it began, according to the Big-Bang Model. The Steady-State Theory is based on the concept of an expanding universe whose average density remains constant, matter being continuously created throughout it to form new stars and galaxies at the same rate that old ones recede from sight. A ‘Steady-State Universe’ has no beginning or end, and its average density and arrangement of galaxies are the same as seen from every point. Galaxies of all ages are intermingled. The theory was first put forward by William Macmillan (1861–1948) in the 1920s and modified by Fred Hoyle to deal with problems that had arisen in connection with the Big-Bang Model. Much evidence obtained since the 1950s contradicts the ‘Steady-State Theory’ and supports the ‘Big-Bang Model’.
In the absence of definitive observational conclusions, scientists can only speculate on the possible fate of the actual universe. If the universe is unbound, the cosmological expansion will not halt, and eventually the galaxies and stars will all die, leaving the Cosmos a cold, dark, and virtually empty place. If the universe is bound, the mass-energy content in the distant but finite future will come together again; the cosmic background radiation will be blue shifted, raising the temperature of matter and radiation to incredible levels, perhaps to reforge everything in the fiery crucible of the ‘Big Squeeze’. Because of the development of structure in previous epochs, the big squeeze may not occur simultaneously everywhere at the end of time as its explosive counterpart, the ‘Big Bang’, seems to have done at the beginning of time.
The Black Hole, play an important role in the theories related with the end of universe. Black Hole is the cosmic body with gravity so intense that nothing, not even light, can escape. It is suspected to form in the death and collapse of a star that has retained at least three times the Sun’s mass. Stars with less mass evolve into white dwarf stars or neutron stars. Details of a black hole’s structure are calculated from Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity: a “singularity” of zero volume and infinite density pulls in all matter and energy that comes within an ‘event horizon’ (Boundary marking the limits of a blackhole), defined by the ‘Schwarzschild Radius’, around it. Black Holes cannot be observed directly because they are small and emit no light. However, their enormous gravitational fields affect nearby matter, which is drawn in and emits X rays as it collides at high speed outside the event horizon. Some Black Holes may have nonstellar origins. Astronomers speculate that supermassive Black Holes at the centers of quasars and many galaxies are the source of energetic activity that is observed. Stephen W. Hawking theorized the creation of numerous tiny Black Holes, possibly no more massive than an asteroid, during the Big Bang. These primordial “Mini Black Holes” lose mass over time and disappear as a result of Hawking radiation. Although Black Holes remain theoretical, the case for their existence is supported by many observations of phenomena that match their predicted effects. However discussions of recurring cycles of expansions and contractions of universe, thus remain highly speculative.
Apart from scientists, the theologians and philosophers have also postulated theories of creation. The most popular theories of creation of universe, among modern philosophers and theologians are; ‘Accident Theory’ and ‘Creation by Design’.
According to ‘Accident Theory’, the universe is created through an accident. There is no God, or a creator, the view of atheists. It may be seen that the universe and this world is so well organized, working according to laws, it can not be outcome of an accident, it must be the work of a Creator. The universe is so big, so vast so wonderful, that human perceptions can not fully comprehend it despite the advancement in technology and knowledge. So its creator also has to be very big very great, infinite, that it is beyond the finite physical human capabilities (specially senses) to fully comprehend Him directly. However the great gift of ‘intellect’ can be used to feel His existence. How to feel His existence? If one can not perceive some thing directly through the senses then the ‘signs’ guide to the reality. If in the sea some one observes birds in some particular direction, it indicates existence of some Island or land, although no one has seen the island or land, but it is the intellect which informs that the birds have to be closer to land, they can not survive in the sea for long. If one looks at himself, the human being is a very complex unique machine, it can not be product of an accident. How the universe, the heaven, stars, sun, moon and earth, came in to existence? The scientists have tried to resolve this issue and theorize that the universe is the outcome of ‘Big Bang’, as explained earlier. The big mass, exploded and there became stars, galaxies, solar system and earth. A Big Bang made this world, which is so well organized having a definite pattern. People have been navigating using patterns of stars since long. The solar system follows some rules. There is fixed pattern of rotation and gravitational forces interacting, making days & nights, precisely in a fixed cycle spread over time, the result of a ‘Big Bang’! If there is some huge heap of junk lying on ground and there comes a tornado, once the tornado is over, it is found that the heap of junk is dispersed more haphazardly. If a tornado hits a city, rubble is found all around once it is over; there is no definite new organized pattern. If dynamite is exploded in a heap of rubbish, it does not result in good products like car or a house. If Big Bang which produced the well organized galaxies, stars and solar system and earth why could not the tornado or an explosion produce some organized things? Because in case of the ‘Big Bang’ there is an all powerful all wise Creator, known as God or Allah. Where as in case of tornado (though with the will of God) there is no intelligent force operating with the intentions to create some thing out of it, the natural wild forces interact resulting in to confusion and destruction.
Creation by Design Theory is a derivative form of ‘Teleological Arguments’. God created the universe as a part of His Grand Design; hence it is well laid out, well organized, following rules. This creation is not the result of some natural accident; it will end at prescribed time. Allah says: “And We created not the heaven and the earth and all that is between them in vain… ”(Qur’an;:38:27). He is capable of doing anything in the Heavens or in the Earth, because of His perfect knowledge and power: His creation is not dependent on material, time, instruments or means, or any conditions whatsoever. Human require some material to make some thing i.e. a carpenter requires tools, wood and other material to make furniture. Allah, Most High creates things out of nothing; He has knowledge of them in pre-eternity, before their creation. Existence waits on His Will, or Plan, or Intention. The moment He wills a thing, it becomes His Word or Command, and the thing comes into existence. “Indeed His command, when He desires a thing, is only to say to it ‘Be’ and it is” (Qur’an;36:82). He is free from weariness and weakness, because of His infinite power: “Surely, We created the Heavens and the Earth and all that is between them in six eons (very long periods), and no weariness touched Us”(Qur’an;50:38);“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary, his understanding is Unsearchable.” (Isaiah;40:28).
THE GRAND DESIGN OF CREATION
THE GRAND DESIGN OF CREATION
The creation of the universe and humanity may be understood as a part of His ‘Grand Design’, which according to Qur’an is based upon trial, balance, justice and mercy. Allah says: “We have created you from the earth, into it We shall return you and from it We shall bring you back to life once again.”(Qur’an;20:55). He has granted freedom of choice to the human through guidance, intellect and reason, resulting in individual responsibility and accountability. However He accepts repentance of sinners and forgives them as He has decreed mercy upon Himself but those who die as rebellious and disobedient to Him, will be punished in hereafter. Allah says: “To Him you shall all return. Allah’s promise is true. He is the One Who originates the process of Creation and repeats it (will bring it back to life) so that He may justly reward (hereafter) those who believed in Him and did righteous deeds. As for those who disbelieved, they shall have boiling fluids to drink and shall undergo a painful punishment because they rejected the truth.”(Qur’an;10:4). The universe has been created in orderly and symmetrical fashion. It has been described in Qur’an: “Moreover He Comprehended in His design the sky and it had been (as) smoke: He said to it and to the earth: “Come ye together willingly or unwillingly.” They said: “We do come (together) in willing obedience.” (Qur’an;41:11); “Do not the Unbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were joined together (as one unit of Creation) before We clove them asunder? We made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe?” (Qur’an;21:30).
The creation narrative of Qur’an is scientific, not mythological. The Qur’an is the book of guidance, not of science, being the Word of God, ’it does not need verification by science or any other sources, however with the advancement of human knowledge in science and technology, understanding of this Scripture has been further facilitated. According to narrative of Qur’an the creation process of universe took six eons. In His design the sky, had been as smoke, He created the heavens, the making of the sky into the seven firmaments and primeval matter (formless matter) in two eons. The matter was as yet without order, shape, or symmetry. This state may be called Chaos as opposed to Cosmos in Greek Cosmogony. The next stage would be the condensation of this primeval matter, into gases, liquids, or solids: on this subject no precise information is given, it belongs to the realm of physics and geology. The process of creation of heavens and the earth goes along simultaneously. He set the gradual evolution of the form of the earth, its mountains, seas, animal and vegetable life, with the “nourishment in due proportion”, proper to each, in four eons. Hence on the whole, the creation was completed in six eons. (Qur’an; 45:3, 2:29, 7:54, 10:3, 14:19-20, 18:51, 21:30, 23:17, 25:59, 32:4, 40:38, 41:9-12, 46:33, 51:47, 57:4, 55:7, 64, 50, 67:3-4, 87:2, 91:6).
Allah says; “Soon shall We show them Our signs in the universe and in their own selves, until it becomes clear to them that this Qur’an is indeed the truth. Is it not enough that your Lord is a witness over everything?”(Qur’an;41:53). Qur’an talks about hundreds of things that were not known fourteen hundred year ago, when it was revealed; but they have been scientifically proved recently, some of them are: The creation of the universe by ‘The Big bang” and smoke (Qur’an;21:30, 41:11). Lately E. E. Barnard of the Yerkes Observatory observed certain black spots in front of the great diffuse nebulae that occur throughout our galaxy. Bart J. Bok of Harvard University has investigated these opaque globules of dust and gas; they have about the mass of the sun and about the dimensions of the space between the sun and the nearest star. Lyman Spitzer, Jr., of Princeton University has shown that if large masses of dust and gas exist in space, they should be pushed together by the light of neighboring stars. Eventually, when the dust particles are sufficiently compressed, gravity should collapse the whole mass, and the pressure and temperature in its interior should be enough to start the thermonuclear reaction of a star.
Qur’an mentions about the shape of earth; “And the earth, moreover, hath He made egg shaped (dah-aa -haa).” (Qur’an;79:30). Moon has reflected light and sun has its own light; “And (who) made the moon a light (nur, reflected light) in their midst and made the sun as a (Glorious) Lamp(siraja-own light) (Qur’an;71:16); The Sun Rotates:” It is He Who created the Night and the Day, and the sun and the moon: All (the celestial bodies) swim along, each in its rounded course.”(Qur’an;21:33); “It is not permitted to the sun to catch up the moon, nor can the night outstrip the day: Each (just) swims along in (its own) orbit (according to Law).”(Qur’an;36:40); The other examples are: The sun will extinguish; (Qur’an;36:38,13:2). The expanding nature of universe; (Qur’an;51:47). Atoms can be divided; (Qur’an;10:61). Mountains are like tent pegs firmly fixed providing stability; (Qur’an;78:6-7,21:31,79:32); Darkness in depths of ocean; (Qur’an;24:40). The water cycle;(Qur’an;39:21, 30:24,23:18). Plants & fruits have male and female; (Qur’an;20:53, 13:3). The bee and its skills; (Qur’an;16:68-69). Lifestyle and communication of ants; (Qur’an;27:17-18); Honey has healing for humankind; (Qur’an;16:69); Creation of man from water;(Qur’an;25:54); Creation of living being;“.. We created every living thing from water..” (Qur’an;21:30). Importance of fingerprints: (Qur’an;75:3-4) and the existence of pain receptors in the skin: (Qur’an;4:56). Embryological stages; (Qur’an;23:12-14, 75:37-39,82:7-8); Embryo partly formed and partly unformed; (Qur’an;22:5). First sense of hearing developed then sense of sight; (Qur’an;32:9,23:78) and Sex determination factor for child; (Qur’an;53:45-46,75:37-39). [For more details refer to books on ; ‘Qur’an and Science’ by Dr.Zakir Naik & “The Bible, The Qur’an and Science” by Dr. Maurice Bucaille].
Finally this world and life will reach its end, followed by the doomsday, the time is only known to God: “Surely Allah Alone has the knowledge of the Hour..”(Qur’an;31:34); “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.”(Mark;13:32). The universe will be destroyed, then recreated: “All that exists on the earth will perish,”(Qur’an;55;26); “But the LORD shall endure for ever: he hath prepared his throne for judgment.”(Psalms;9:7); “For the great day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?”(Revelation;6:17);“heaven will cleft asunder,”(Qur’an;77:9);“and the sun and the moon will be brought together”(Qur’an;75:9); “On that Day We shall roll up the heavens like a scroll of writings; just as We originated the first creation, so shall We produce it again - that is Our promise, and We will fulfill it.”(Qur’an;21:104); “When the Stars are scattered;”(Qur’an;82:2);“Warn them of the Day when the earth will be changed to a different earth and the heavens as well, and all of them will stand before Allah, the One, the Irresistible;”(Qur’an;14:48).
Biblical Narrative of Creation:
The narrative of creation of universe and humanity is mentioned is Bible (Genesis;Chapters:1-3) with some similarities with the Qur’anic narrative. It is narrated in Bible: “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”(Genesis;1:1-2). He called into being, all things out of nothing. This creative act on the part of God was absolutely free, and for infinitely wise reasons. The cause of all things exists only in the will of God: “For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day, and hallowed it.”(Exodus;20:11). The order of creation has been narrated separately for each day. First day, making light and dividing it from darkness (Geneses;1:3-5; 2 Corinthians;4:6); Second day, making the firmament or atmosphere, and separating the waters (Geneses;1:6-8); Third day, separating the land from the water, and making it fruitful (Geneses;1:9-13); Fourth day, placing the sun, moon, and stars to give light (Geneses;1:14-19); Fifth day, making birds, insects, and fishes (Geneses;1:20-23) and finally on Sixth day, making beasts of the earth, and man (Geneses;1:24,28).
God is glorified for the creations: “Lift up your eyes on high and see: who created these? He who brings out their host by number, calling them all by name; by the greatness of his might, and because he is strong in power not one is missing.” (Isaiah;40:26); “O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches. (Psalms;104:24); “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.”(Hebrews;11:3). The fact that he is the Creator distinguishes Jehovah as the true God (Isaiah;37:16; 40:12-13; 54:5; Psalms;96:5; Jeremiah;10:11-12). The one great end in the work of creation is the manifestation of the glory of the Creator (Revelation;4:11; Romans;11:36). God’s works, equally with God’s word, are a revelation from him; and between the teachings of the one and those of the other, when rightly understood, there can be no contradiction. However there are many unscientific variations and contradictions, like: Trees were created before man was created.(Genesis;1:11-12, 26-27); Man was created before trees were created.(Genesis;2:4-9).Birds were created before man was created. (Genesis;1:20-21,26-27);Man was created before birds were created (Genesis;2:7,19). Animals were created before man was created (Genesis;1:24-27); Man was created before animals were created.(Genesis;2:7,19). Man and woman were created at the same time.(Genesis;1:26-27);Man was created first, woman sometime later (Genesis;2:7, 21-22). God was pleased with his creation (Genesis;1:31); God was not pleased with his creation.(Genesis;6:5-6),God feeling displeased on His creation is inconsistent with the concept of Omniscience (Having total knowledge).
Comparative Analysis of Creation Narrative of Bible and Qur’an:
The Biblical astrophysical study of the origin and evolution of the universe, reflects old Babylonian cosmogony, the scheme is apparently to be taken literally as to ‘days’. The Qur’anic scheme of creation is wholly different. Allah did not rest, after creation and never rests: “His Throne doth extend over the heavens and the earth, and He feels no fatigue in guarding and preserving them”(Qur’an;2:255). Allah’s work has not ended; His activity still goes on (Qur’an;32:5 & 7:54); Man does not come in with land animals; his advent is much later. In contrast to Bible, the Qur’anic stages of creation are not sharply divided from each other, they overlap and have parallels i.e. the stages for earth and heaven are not in rigid sequence of time.
Creation of the Universe in Six Days:As per the Bible, the universe was created in six days and each day is defined as a twenty-four hours period(Genesis;1). Even though the Qur’an mentions that the universe was created in six ‘Ayyaams’, ‘Ayyaam’ is the plural of years; this word means; a day, or ‘stage’, ‘period’ or ‘epoch’, eon; very long period. When the Qur’an mentions that the universe was created in six ‘Ayyaams’, it refers to the creation of the heavens and the earth in six long periods or epochs; also affirmed by scientific theories . The creation of the universe has taken billions of years, which contradicts the concept of the Bible which states that the creation of the Universe took six earthly days (of twenty-four hour duration) each.
Sun Created After the Day:The Bible state; that the phenomenon of day and night was created on the first day of creation of the Universe by God (Genesis;1:3-5). The light circulating in the universe is the result of a complex reaction in the stars; these stars were created according to the Bible (Genesis;1:14-19) on the fourth day. It is unscientific to mention the result that is the light (the phenomenon of day and night) was created on the first day of Creation when the cause or source of the light was created three days later. Moreover the existence of evening and morning as elements of a single day is only conceivable after the creation of the earth and its rotation around the sun. On the other hand, the Qur’an does not give any unscientific sequence of Creation.
Creation of the Sun, The Earth and the Moon: According to the Bible, (Genesis;1:9-13), the earth was created on the third day, and as per verses 14 to 19, the sun and the moon were created on the fourth day. The earth and the moon emanated, as well known, from their original star, the Sun. Hence to place the creation of the sun and the moon after the creation of the earth is contrary to the established idea about the formation of the solar system.
Vegetation Created on the third day and Sun on the fourth day: According to Bible(Genesis;1:11-13), vegetation was created on the third day along with seed-bearing grasses, plants and trees; and further on as per verses 14-19, the sun was created on the fourth day. It is scientifically not possible for the vegetation to have appeared without the presence of the sun. Qur’an does not contain any statements which are incompatible with scientific facts. The Sun and the Moon both emit light According to the Bible both the sun and the moon emit their own light: “And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night”(Genesis;1:16). According to science it is a proven fact that the moon does not have its own light. This confirms the Qur’anic concept that the light of the moon is a reflected light.
Synthesis of Islamic & Scientific Narrative of Creation:
By synthesizing the Islamic narratives of creation with the scientific theories, a possible visualization emerges: In the beginning God created a concentrated core of (light) energy, and then, He caused it to explode in a Big Bang, leading to creation of Time, Space and Matter, as understood by human. God is not bound by time or space, for He Himself has created them. This phenomenon of creation out of nothing represents the manifestation of divine command “Be!” The Big Bang did not happen at any specific place as the space itself was created with this explosion. Similarly it did not occur at any particular instant, as the time itself came in to being with the Big Bang. Since then, the universe has been continuously expanding, rotating, and evolving. Many cosmologists have suggested that at a predetermined point in future the universe will stop expanding. From that point onwards, the contraction or folding back phase of the universe will commence- either due to the gravitational pull of the unseen matter exceeding the forces of expansion or as a result of the swallowing up of entire galaxies by Black Holes – leading ultimately to the Big Crunch, which is the disappearance of the cosmos in catastrophic implosion, like the Big Bang in reverse. In terms of modern cosmology the Islamic belief about resurrection can be expressed by stating that the Big Crunch will be followed by another Big Bang, leading to the creation of a new universe that will last forever. This new universe will be totally different from the present universe, utterly beyond the realm of human imagination. The rebirth of all humanity, their final judgement, the Hell and the Paradise, are believed according to the revealed scriptures, though the exact nature of that state of existence is simply inconceivable. As far as end of this world is concerned, it seems that a major catastrophe will take place, destroying a part of this galaxy including the sun and the earth, and that this will happen well before the universal doomsday or the Big Crunch. Probably it is this local doomsday that is referred to in Qur’an as “the Startling Calamity,” “the Hour” and “the Inevitable.”
HUMAN CREATION, INSTINCTIVE COVENANT & TRIAL
HUMAN CREATION, INSTINCTIVE COVENANT & TRIAL
The human creation has three interlinked phases: Much earlier than the physical creation of humanity, God created all the human spirits, to be born in the world from day one till the last day of the world. This was ‘The First Creation’ and He entered in to Covenant: “When thy Lord drew forth from the children of Adam from their loins their descendants and made them testify concerning themselves (saying): “Am I not your Lord?” They said: “Yea! we do testify!” (This) lest ye should say on the Day of Judgment: “of this we were never mindful.” (Qur’an;7:172). Thereafter the spirits were put in to the state of sleep (First Death). Allah has also instilled instinctive cognition to differentiate between right and wrong: “by the soul and Him Who perfected it and inspired it with knowledge of what is wrong for it and what is right for it: indeed successful will be the one who keeps it pure, and indeed failure will be the one who corrupts it!”(Qur’an;91:7-10). It is due to this implied Covenant with whole of humanity, that the concept of One Supreme God, Allah is part of nature of every human being, right from the day he is physically borne in this world (Second Creation) weather he receives the message of guidance from an apostle or not. Though he tends to forget it due to the influence of satanic forces and environments. According to Sahih Bukhari Hadith No.298, volume 4: Narrated by Abu Hurairah; Allah’s Apostle said, “No child is born except on Al-Fitra (Islam) and then his parents make him Jewish, Christian or Magian, as an animal produces a perfect young animal: do you see any part of its body amputated?” Then he recited: “Therefore, stand firm in your devotion to the upright faith - the nature made by Allah, (hanefa fitr’ah) the one on which mankind is created - and the laws of Nature ordained by Allah cannot be changed. That is the ‘Standard True Religion’, but most among mankind do not know.”(Qur’an;30:30). Man lives in this world with the freedom of choice to follow the way of the Lord or of Satan. After living in this world for specific period, he dies (Second Death). He will be raised again on Day of Judgment (Third Creation) for accountability: “on that Day when the earth shall split asunder and the people shall be rushing out of it; that gathering them together shall be quite easy for Us.”(Qur’an;50:44); “They shall come out from their graves, like swarming locusts, with downcast eyes, rushing towards the caller and the same unbelievers will cry: “This is indeed an awful Day!”(Qur’an;54:7-8); “That Day will every soul be requited for what it earned; no injustice will there be that Day for Allah is Swift in taking account.”(Qur’an;40:17). Thereafter while the unbelievers will be thrown to hell to live there for ever, the pious believers (of all the messengers and prophets) according to their faith and deeds will be blessed to live in paradise, however the sinful believers will be punished, but ultimately God will accord permission to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) to intercede, hence they will be taken out of hell in batches to live in paradise for ever. Those people who did not receive the message of guidance through messenger or preachers, will be judged according to the ‘Implied Covenant’; part of their nature explored through the intellect; but not according to the Law (Shari’a), which they did not know. They may hang around between paradise and hell, (like ashab ul ar’af, Qur’an;7:46-47) with the hope to enter paradise with Mercy of Allah. Allah is All Mighty, Powerful to do what ever He Wills.
The Qur’an narrates the creation of human being at many places. The man was endowed with the knowledge, wisdom and distained to have choice of free will, to distinguish and choose from right and wrong, the capability not available to other animals. Man was created by design, to be God’s vicegerent in this world. Appointment of vicegerent demands great responsibility, which was accepted by man. While creating the human, God said; “Behold thy Lord said to the angels: “I will create a vicegerent on earth “.They said “Wilt thou place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood? Whilst we do celebrate Thy praises and glorify Thy holy (name)?” He said: “I know what ye know not.”(Qur’an;2:30).; “Behold! thy Lord said to the angels: “I am about to create man from sounding clay from mud molded into shape; “When I have fashioned him (in due proportion) and breathed into him of My spirit fall ye down in obeisance unto him.”(Qur’an;15:28-29); “We have indeed created man in the best stature;”(Qur’an;95:4). “We did indeed offer the Trust to the Heavens and the Earth and the Mountains: but they refused to undertake it being afraid thereof: but man undertook it he was indeed unjust and foolish”(Qur’an;33:72). “And He (God) imparted in to Adam the knowledge of the names of all things; then He placed them before the angels and said: “Tell Me the nature of these if ye are right. “Glory to You,” they replied, “we have no knowledge except what You have taught us: in fact You are the One who is perfect in knowledge and wisdom.” Allah said: “O Adam! Tell them the names.” When Adam told them the names, Allah said: “Did I not tell you that I know the secrets of the heavens and the earth and I know what you reveal and what you conceal?”. And when We said to the angels: Make obeisance to Adam, they did obeisance, not so Satan, he refused and-was haughty and he was of the: rejecters” (Qur’an;2:31-34). “I (Iblis) am better than him (Adam), you created me from fire and created him from clay. Allah said to Satan: “Get down from here. You have no right to brag here of your superiority. Get out; henceforth you are of the petty ones.”” (Qur’an;7:12-13).
The Satan (Iblis) requested God for respite, and permission to lure in the man from the true path, the path of obedience to God, towards the evil path of disobedience and transgression. Allah as per His Wisdom and plan granted the permission; “Satan said: Give me respite till the Resurrection Day. Allah said: Be you among those who are given respite. He said: Because You have thrown me out of the way, I will certainly lie in wait for them (human) on Your Straight Path. Then will assault them from before them and behind them, from their right and from their left, nor will You find most of them grateful”(Qur’an;7:14-18). Allah warned Adam against the evil designs of Satan: “Then We said: “O Adam! Verily this (Satan) is an enemy to thee and thy wife: so let him not get you both out of the Garden so that thou art landed in misery. “There is therein (enough provision) for thee not to go hungry nor to go naked. Nor to suffer from thirst nor from the sun’s heat. But Satan whispered evil to him: he said “O Adam! shall I lead thee to Tree of Eternity and to a kingdom that never decays? In the result they both ate of the tree and so their nakedness appeared to them: they began to sew together for their covering leaves from the Garden: thus did Adam disobey His Lord and allow himself to be seduced” (Qur’an;20:117-121). Adam and Eve prayed to God for forgiveness; “.. “Our Lord! We have wronged our souls. If You do not forgive us and have mercy on us, we shall certainly be of the losers.”(Qur’an;7:23); “Then Adam received appropriate words from his Lord and repented, and Allah accepted his repentance. Surely Allah is the Most Forgiving, the Most Merciful.”(Qur’an;2:37);“But his Lord chose him (for His Grace): He turned to him and gave him guidance. He said: “Get ye down both of you all together from the Garden with enmity one to another; but if as is sure there comes to you guidance from Me whosoever follows My guidance will not lose his way nor fall into misery. But whosoever turns away from My Message verily for him is a life narrowed down and We shall raise him up blind on the Day of Judgment.” (Qur’an;20:122-124). The humanity originally created from the water and clay was made to multiply and grow thorough marriage relationships, having different languages and colors spread allover the earth.(Qur’an;25:54, 30:20, 30:22). God warned the humanity: “Satan’s plan is to incite enmity and hatred among you with intoxicants and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah and regular prayer. Will you not then abstain?”(Qur’an;5:91).
The Qur’anic and Biblical version of creation of Adam, though generally similar, also has glaring differences. In the Bible, there are two accounts of their creation. According to the Priestly history of the 5th or 6th century BC (Genesis;1:1-2:4), God on the sixth day of Creation created all the living creatures: “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.”(Genesis;2:7); “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”(Genesis;1:27) [“We have indeed created man in the best stature;”(Qur’an;95:4)]. God then blessed the couple, told them to be “fruitful and multiply,” and gave them dominion over all other living things. According to the lengthier Yahwist narrative of the 10th century BC (Genesis; 2:5-7, 2:15-4:1, 4:25), God, or Yahweh, created Adam at a time when the earth was still void, forming him from the earth’s dust and breathing “into his nostrils the breath of life.” God then gave Adam the primeval Garden of Eden to tend but, on penalty of death, commanded him not to eat of the fruit of the “tree of knowledge of good and evil.” Subsequently, so that Adam would not be alone, God created other animals but, finding these insufficient, put Adam to sleep, took from him a rib, and created a new companion, Eve. The two were persons of innocence until Eve yielded to the temptations of the evil serpent (Islam does not blame eve alone) and Adam joined her in eating the forbidden fruit, whereupon they both recognized their nakedness and donned fig leaves as garments. Immediately, God recognized their transgression and proclaimed their punishments; for the woman, pain in childbirth and subordination to man, and, for the man, relegation to an accursed ground with which he must toil and sweat for his subsistence.
According to Bible, Adam, the first man, lived on earth about 5,800 Years Ago: As per the genealogy of Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) given in the Bible, from Jesus through Abraham (peace be upon him) to the first man on earth i.e. Adam (peace be upon him) appeared on the earth approximately 5800 years ago [1948 years between Adam and Abraham plus approximately 1800 years between Abraham and Jesus and 2000 years from Jesus till present]. These figures are further confused by the fact that the Jewish calendar is currently on or about 5800 years old. There is sufficient evidence from archaeological and anthropological sources to suggest that the first human being on earth was present tens of thousands of years ago and not merely 5,800 years ago as is suggested by the Bible. The Qur’an too speaks about Adam as the first man on earth but it does not suggest any date or period of his life on earth, unlike the Biblical version totally incompatible with science.
The story of Adam and Eve is, in reality, an allegory of human destiny. In his earlier state of virtuousness man was unaware of the existence of evil and, therefore, of the ever-present necessity of making a choice between the many possibilities of action and behaviour: in other words, he lived, like all other animals, in the light of his instincts alone. Inasmuch, however, as this innocence was only a condition of his existence and not a virtue, it gave to his life a static quality and thus precluded him from moral and intellectual development. The growth of his consciousness-symbolized by the willful act of disobedience to God’s command-changed all this. It transformed him from a purely instinctive being into a full-fledged human entity as we know it - a human being capable of discriminating between right and wrong and thus of choosing his way of life. In this deeper sense, the allegory of the ‘fall’ does not describe a retrogressive happening but, rather, a new stage of human development: an opening of doors to moral considerations. By forbidding him to “approach this tree”, God made it possible for man to act wrongly-and, therefore, to act rightly as well: and so man became endowed with that moral free will which distinguishes him from all other conscious beings.
Freedom of Choice Through Guidance, Intellect and Reason: Allah does not want to force the ‘Faith’ upon human, He says: “If your Lord had so willed, He would have certainly made mankind one single nation but that is not what He wants, so they will continue to differ except those on whom He has bestowed His mercy; and that very freedom of choice and action is the whole purpose of their creation. That is how the Word of your Lord, that; ‘He will fill Hell with jinns and human beings all together’, will be fulfilled.”(Qur’an;11:118-119); “If it had been the will of your Lord that all the people of the world should be believers, all the people of the earth would have believed! Would you then compel mankind against their will to believe? Notwithstanding that no human being can ever attain to faith otherwise than by God’s leave, and (that) it is He who lays the loathsome evil (of disbelief) upon those who will not use their reason?(Qur’an;10:100). “If We wanted, We could send down upon them a sign from the heaven before which they would bend their necks in submission, but that is not what We want.”(Qur’an;26:4). Man has been provided with natural inspired guidance and endowed with intellect, so that he can use his reason and freedom of choice: “by the soul and Him Who perfected it and inspired it with knowledge of what is wrong for it and what is right for it: indeed successful will be the one who keeps it pure, and indeed failure will be the one who corrupts it!”(Qur’an;91:7-10); “Who hath ordained laws and granted guidance;” (Qur’an;87:3). The responsibility of misdeed and unbelief is upon the man: “It was not We that wronged them: they wronged their own souls :”(Qur’an;11:101); “O Muhammad, declare: “O mankind! The truth has come to you from your Lord! He that follows guidance (Right Way) follows it for his own good, and he that goes astray does so at his own risk; for I am not a custodian over you.”(Qur’an;10:108); “There is no compulsion in religion.” (Qur’an;2:256); “Truth has come and Falsehood perished: for Falsehood by its nature is bound to perish.”(Qur’an;17:81). The pious believers will be told: “This is Paradise; you have inherited it by virtue of your past deeds.”(Qur’an;43:72).
Individual Responsibility, Accountability & Repentance: God is very fair and Just: “The fact is that Allah does not do injustice to mankind in any way: but men are unjust to their own souls.”(Qur’an;10:44). In Islam there is no concept of original sin or inherited sin, man is born free of sin. Qur’an stress upon the individual responsibility of man, Allah says: ““If they do not believe you, say: “I am responsible for my actions and you are for yours! You are not accountable for my actions, nor I am responsible for what you do.”(Qur’an;10:41); But whoso ever repents after his wrongdoing and amends, lo! God will relent toward him. Lo! God is Forgiving, Merciful.”(Qur’an;5:39); “.. Every soul will reap the fruits of its own deeds; no bearer of burdens shall bear the burden of another.” (Qur’an;6:164). Bible also emphasizes the individual responsibility: “The soul that sins shall die. The son shall not suffer for the iniquity of the father, nor the father suffer for the iniquity of the son; the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself. But if a wicked man turns away from all his sins which he has committed and keeps all my statutes and does what is lawful and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die.”(Ezekiel;18:20-21); “I, I am He who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins.”(Isiah;43:25); “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin will I remember no more.”(Jermiah;31:34 & 36:3); “To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgiveness;” (Daniel;9:9); “But there is forgiveness with thee, That thou mayest be feared”(Psalms;103:4). Adam (peace be upon him) committed the first sin, he repented and was forgiven by God (Qur’an;2:37), God is so merciful that He has decreed mercy upon Himself for the repentant, He is the Forgiving, the Loving (Qur’an;6:54, 85:14).
The Vicegerent: Allah appointed man, as His vicegerent on earth, however the disbelieves, bears the burden of his disbelief.(Qur’an;35:39). Human being enjoys a special high ranking status in the hierarchy of all known creatures. Man occupies this distinguished position because he is gifted with rational faculties and spiritual aspirations as well as powers of action. Man is not a condemned race from birth to death, but is a dignified being potentially capable of good and noble achievements. Every person is born with the nature to be obedient to God by following His natural laws (Qur’an:30:30). Every person is endowed by Allah with spiritual potential and intellectual inclination that can make him a good Muslim Every person’s birth takes place according to the will of Allah in realization of His plans and in submission to His commands. Every person is born free from sin until he commits it by freedom of choice provided to him. When a person reaches the age of maturity and if sane, he becomes accountable for all his deeds and intentions. There is no inherited sin, No Original Sin, Adam committed the first sin, he prayed to Allah for pardon and Allah pardoned him (Qur’an;20:121-122). People are created equal by the God, there is no superiority for one race over another except the most righteous (Qur’an;49:13). No one can claim that he is better than others. It is only Allah Who knows who is better, the criterion being the piety and righteousness. The mankind was chosen collectively to be Vicegerents (Qur’an;2:30), yet some among mankind fall pray to evil, due to their own wrong choice hence, they will suffer the punishment in hereafter.
The Bible mentions that man is made in God’s image: “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creep upon the earth.”(Genesis;1:26 also mentioned at 1:27 & 9:6). The biblical theologians have interpreted “Image of God” as ‘God’s representative’. Hence it is the function of man to be God’s stead on earth. He is God’s representative, exercise dominion over all that is in universe, to fill it conquer it (Genesis;1:28). It is confirmed at Psalms: “Yet thou hast made him little less than God, and dost crown him with glory and honor.”(Psalms;8:5). The man is God’s image because he dominates creation; so that he may exercise his domination God has vested man with God’s power and inspired every living thing with fear of him. Man has been created king of the created order, God’s vicar on earth, endowed with God’s strength so that the animal kingdom stands awe of him.
THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION
THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION
The science has formulated a ‘Theory of Evolution’ to explain the creation of human being. Word ‘Theory’ means; something taken as true without proof for the sake of argument or investigation, its opposite is ‘fact’; a thing known for certain to have occurred or to be true; a datum of experience. Evolution is a gradual process in which something changes into a different and usually more complex or better form. The idea of human evolution was first presented by the Muslim thinkers; Al Jahiz (776-868 C.E) and Ibn Miskawayh (930-1030 C.E) also mentioned by the great Sufi mystic and poet Maulana Jalal-ad-Din ar-Rumi (1207-1273 C.E): “Low in the earth, I lived in realms of sore and stone; And then I smiled in many tinted flowerers; Then roving with the wild and wandering hours, O’er earth and air and ocean’s zone, In a new birth, I dived and flew, And crept and ran, And all the secret of my essence drew Within a form that brought them all to view- And lo, a Man! And then my goal, Beyond the clouds, beyond the sky, In realms where non may change or die- In general form; and then away Beyond the bounds of night and day, And Life and Death, unseen or seen, Where all that is hath ever been, As One and Whole.”[Translation, quoted from “Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam”by Muhammad Iqbal, the great poet philosopher of 20th century]. The British naturalist Charles Darwin (1809-1882 C.E) further developed the theory of biological evolution, stating that all species of organisms arise and develop through the natural selection of small, inherited variations that increase the individual’s ability to compete, survive, and reproduce. Accordingly it is hypothesize that: ‘An evolutionary divergence exist between the lineages of humans and the great apes (Pongidae) on the African continent 5–8 million years ago. Homo habilis inhabited sub-Saharan Africa until 1.5 million years ago. Homo habilis, in turn, appears to have been supplanted by a taller and more humanlike species, Homo erectus. This species lived from 2,000,000 to 250,000 years ago and gradually migrated into Asia and parts of Europe. Archaic forms of Homo sapiens with features resembling those of both Homo erectus and modern humans appeared 400,000 years ago in Africa and perhaps parts of Asia, but fully modern humans emerged only 250,000–150,000 years ago, probably having descended from Homo erectus.’
Origin of Life:
If a (human) species can develop only from a preexisting species (apes), through the process of evolution, then how did life originate? Among the many philosophical and religious ideas advanced to answer this question, one of the most popular was the theory of Spontaneous Generation, according to which, living organisms could originate from nonliving matter spontaneously. Research by Tyndall, together with findings of Pasteur (1822-1895), put an end to the doctrine of spontaneous generation. Biopoiesis is an other process by which living organisms are ‘thought’ to develop from nonliving matter. According to this theory, conditions were such that, at one time in Earth’s history, life was created from nonliving material, probably in the sea, which contained the necessary chemicals. During this process, molecules slowly grouped, then regrouped, forming ever more efficient means for energy transformation and becoming capable of reproduction. Thus the evolutionary theory claims that life started with the formation of the first living cell by chance. The claim that nonliving materials can come together to form life is an unscientific one, that has not been verified by any experiment or observation. Life is only generated from life. Each living cell is formed by the replication of another cell.
In the 1920s a Soviet biochemist, A.I. Oparin, suggested the concept of “Chemical Evolution.” He and other scientists suggested that life may have come from nonliving matter under conditions that existed on the primitive Earth, when the atmosphere consisted of the gases methane, ammonia, water vapour, and hydrogen. According to this concept, energy supplied by electrical storms and ultraviolet light may have broken down the atmospheric gases into their constituent elements, and organic molecules may have been formed when the elements recombined. Despite all his theoretical studies, Oparin was unable to produce any results to shed light on the origin of life. He says in his book The Origin of Life, published in 1936: ‘Unfortunately, however, the problem of the origin of the cell is perhaps the most obscure point in the whole study of the evolution of organisms.’ Professor Klaus Dose, the president of the Institute of Biochemistry at the University of Johannes Gutenberg, states: ‘More than 30 years of experimentation on the origin of life in the fields of chemical and molecular evolution have led to a better perception of the immensity of the problem of the origin of life on earth rather than to its solution. At present all discussions on principal theories and experiments in the field either end in stalemate or in a confession of ignorance.
Instead of accepting the reality, some scientists came up with the flimsy argument that under present biospheric conditions new forms of life are not likely to be created from nonliving matter. Others feel that life is continuously being created but that the new forms are not so well adapted to the environment as existing ones and are thus unable to compete successfully. Such illogical conclusion has been made-up; despite all the power of the human intellect, knowledge and technology, no one in the world has ever succeeded in forming a living cell by bringing inanimate materials together, not even in the most advanced laboratories. Thus this claim is contrary to the most basic principles of science, hence self contradictory. There is general consensus among the biologists that it may never be possible to determine experimentally how life originated or whether it originated only once or more than once.
Some scientists, on the basis of the ubiquitous genetic code found in all living organisms on Earth, presumed that life appeared only once and that all the diverse forms of plants and animals evolved from this primitive creation. However the genetic code, once thought to be identical in all forms of life, has been found to diverge in certain organisms and in the mitochondria of some eukaryotes (a single-celled or multicellular organism whose cells contain a distinct membrane-bound nucleus). The similar organs or similar genes among different species resemble each other, not because they have evolved by chance from a common ancestor, but because they have been designed deliberately to perform a particular function. Modern scientific discoveries show that the claim that similarities in living things are due to descent from a “common ancestor” is not valid, and that the only rational explanation for such similarities is “common design.”
In the 1990s, research into the genetic codes of living things worsened the quandary faced by the theory of evolution in this regard. In these experiments, instead of the earlier comparisons that were limited to protein sequences, “ribosomal RNA” (rRNA) sequences were compared. From these findings, evolutionist scientists sought to establish an “evolutionary tree.” However, they were disappointed by the results. All this leads to just one conclusion: Like all living things, plants were also created. From the moment they first emerged, all their mechanisms have existed in a finished and complete form. Terms such as ‘development over time,” “changes dependent on coincidences,” and “adaptations which emerged as a result of need,” which one finds in the evolutionist literature, have no truth in them at all and are scientifically meaningless. The thorough examination of the scientific evidence for the origin of life, and what emerges clearly demonstrates that life was not the result of chance, as claimed by Darwinism and materialist philosophy in general. Living species could not have evolved from one another through a string of coincidences. On the contrary, all living things were independently and flawlessly created. As the twenty-first century dawns, science offers but one answer to the question of the origin of life: Creation. The important thing is that science has confirmed the truth which religion has been witness to from the dawn of history to the present day.
According to the theory of Evolution in nutshell: Some thing came from sea, gradually through evolution it developed in to a creature, then small monkey, bigger monkey, chimpanzee and then human. This raises many questions; Who created monkeys through some creature from the sea? If some thing from sea became monkey why it could not directly become human being? If monkey became human then why there are still so many monkeys? Apart from fiction movies, are there still some monkeys (part human-part monkey) in the process of becoming human? If not, why? Is there some more advanced form of human? If not; Why the evolution process has stopped? Can the theory of evolution be reversed (retrogression), human to monkey? These questions are partially answered by evolutionist, through unscientific conjecture. God created the universe and all the living things in it from nothing. And it was God who created the first human (Adam) from clay and spirit and blessed him with countless characteristics, including the most important; knowledge & intellect. The later humanity is created out of the first couple. This truth has been sent down to man since the dawn of time by prophets, and revealed in holy books. Every prophet has told the communities he addressed that God created man and all living things. The Bible and the Qur’an all tell of the news of creation in the same way. Harun Yahya, the renowned Turkish scholar, in his famous books: ‘The Evolution Deceit’ & ‘Darwinism Refuted’; has systematically analyzed the Theory of Evolution in the light of modern science, citing all the authentic references.
Refutation by Christians:
Religiously motivated attacks started during Darwin’s lifetime. In 1874 Charles Hodge, an American Protestant theologian, published ‘What Is Darwinism?’, one of the most articulate assaults on evolutionism. Hodge perceived Darwin’s theory as “the most thoroughly naturalistic that can be imagined and far more atheistic than that of his predecessor Lamarck.” He argued that the design of the human eye evinces that “it has been planned by the Creator, like the design of a watch evinces a watchmaker.” He concluded that “the denial of design in nature is actually the denial of God.” Other Protestant theologians saw a solution to the difficulty in the idea that God operates through intermediate causes. The origin and motion of the planets could be explained by the law of gravity and other natural processes without denying God’s creation and providence. Similarly, evolution could be seen as the natural process through which God brought living beings into existence and developed them according to his plan. Thus, A.H. Strong, the president of Rochester (N.Y.) Theological Seminary, wrote in his Systematic Theology (1885): “We grant the principle of evolution, but we regard it as only the method of divine intelligence.” The brutish ancestry of man was not incompatible with his excelling status as a creature in the image of God. Strong drew an analogy with Christ’s miraculous conversion of water into wine: “The wine in the miracle was not water because water had been used in the making of it, nor is man a brute because the brute has made some contributions to its creation.”
The fundamentalist, evangelic Christians [An organized, militant Evangelical movement originating in the United States in 1920 in opposition to Liberalism and secularism, emphasizing the literally interpreted Bible as fundamental to Christian life and teachings] remain opposed to the theory of evolution. They believe in Creationism (also called Creation Science, or Scientific Creationism), a counterrevolutionary, fundamentalist theory or doctrine, that postulates that matter, the various forms of life, and the world were created by God out of nothing. Biblical Creationists believe that the story told in Genesis of God’s six-day creation of all things is literally correct. Scientific Creationists believe that a creator made all that exists, but they may not hold that the Genesis story is a literal history of that creation. Some conservative religious groups, however, have argued that Darwinian evolution alone cannot account for the complexity of the living world and have insisted that certain biblical descriptions of creation are revealed scientific truth. In the early 20th century, some areas in the U.S. banned the teaching of Darwinian theory, which led to the famous Scopes Trial (“Monkey Trial”) of 1925. Many creationists now work toward ensuring that schools and textbooks present evolution as a theory that is no more provable than biblical creation.
Arguments for and against Darwin’s theory came from Roman Catholic theologians as well. Gradually, well into the 20th century, evolution by natural selection came to be accepted by the majority of Christian writers. Pope Pius XII in his encyclical Humani Generis (1950; “Of the Human Race”) acknowledged that biological evolution was compatible with the Christian faith, although he argued that God’s intervention was necessary for the creation of the human soul. In 1981 Pope John Paul II stated in an address to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences: ‘The Bible itself speaks to us of the origin of the universe and its make-up, not in order to provide us with a scientific treatise but in order to state the correct relationships of man with God and with the universe. Sacred scripture wishes simply to declare that the world was created by God, and in order to teach this truth it expresses itself in the terms of the cosmology in use at the time of the writer. . . . Any other teaching about the origin and make-up of the universe is alien to the intentions of the Bible, which does not wish to teach how the heavens were made but how one goes to heaven’.
The gradual process of evolution is not alien to the Muslim thinkers, according to Dr.Hamid Ullah; centuries before Darwin, the Muslim thinkers; Al Jahiz (776-868 C.E) and Ibn Miskawayh (930-1030 C.E) presented the idea of human evolution in their books titled; ‘Akhwan-al-Safa’ and ‘Alfawz ul Asghar’ which mention that: God first created the matter , which developed to mist or smoke, then water, subsequently developed in to solid mass like stones, then plantation, trees closer to animals. Amazingly these thinkers were not condemned for such non conventional ideas. The date palm tree is very close to the animals, it has distinct male and female trees. Even if all the trunks of normal tree are chopped off, it still survives but if the top of date palm tree is removed the tree dies; hence it is closest to the lowest form of animals and highest form of plants. It develops in to the lowest form of animal, which develops in to monkey, to human to angel. Finally is the return to God (Qur’an;2:46,156, 21:93, 23:60). It is generally perceived that; God created the first man with clay as a sculpture, breathed spirit, this was Adam, may be it happened as such but God repeatedly mentions in Qur’an;40:67, 35:11, 22:5 and 18:37; that He created the man “from dust, then from a sperm”; obviously the sperm is not created from dust. The sperm is created from animal or man, hence God passed over all the intermediary stages by referring to the ‘dust’ as the origin, the medium is the sperm of man which grows as a child in the womb of women. Qur’an also mentions: “when He has created you in gradual stages (atwaaran)?” (Qur’an;71:4); the word atwaara is derivate of tatur (evolution), hence it may also imply that God created human through evolutionary stages i.e. solid mass – plants – animal: this being an other perspective of human creation.
The creation process is executed by God in two ways: Firstly; the instant execution through His Command (am’r) (Qur’an;3:47, 54:50). Secondly; through gradual evolution (khalaq), like the creation of universe in six eons (Qur’an;32:4, Exodus;20:11). Some of the modern non traditional scholars, well versed with the modern knowledge argue that, since the latest scientific information and knowledge was not available to the classical commentators, hence any new interpretation with in the parameters of fundamental Islamic doctrine based on Qur’an and Sunnah may be acceptable. The concepts of evolution by Al Jahiz and Ibn Miskawayh were based on their thought process not the scientific research. The significance of knowledge is self evident, Allah says: “..Are the knowledgeable and the ignorant equal? In fact, none will take heed except the people of understanding.”(Qur’an;39:9);“He also made subservient to you whatever is between the heavens and the earth; all from Himself. Surely there are signs in this for those who think.”(Qur’an;45:13);“Will they not then ponder on the Qur’an?..” (Qur’an;4:82);“Allah has revealed the most beautiful message, a Book consistent in its verses yet repeating its teachings in different ways..”(Qur’an;39:23).
Some thinkers try to get the support for ‘developmental’ process of creation by non traditional interpretation of Qur’anic verses, by synthesizing the scientific information. Allah says: “Have they not pondered upon themselves?” (Qur’an;30:8); “Has there not been over Man a long period of Time when he was nothing--(not even) mentioned?” (Qur’an;76:1); “Now let man but think from what he is created!”(Qur’an;86:5); “And ye certainly know already the first form of creation: why then do ye not celebrate His praises?(Qur’an;56:62);“every living thing created from water”(Qur’an;21:30); “Indeed We created you, then We formed you,”(Qur’an;7:11); “And Allah hath caused you to grow as a growth from the earth,”(Qur’an;71:7). (also Qur’an;2:155-156, 3:142, 4:82, 6:134-136, 7:11, 10:4, 11:56-57, 14:19, 15:21, 21:30, 22:5-6,23:14, 27:64, 29:19-20, 30:8, 35:16-17, 38:28, 46:3, 55:49-50, 56:62, 65:12, 67:1-2, 70:40-41, 71:7,13-14, 76:1, 84:16, 86:5, 89:19, 91:9-10).
The famous Islamic philosopher, mystic and theologian Mohay ud Din Ibn Al Arabi (born, 1165, Spain died, 1240, Damascus) in his great work The Meccan Revelations, (a personal encyclopedia covering all the esoteric sciences in Islam and his own inner life), narrates a Hadith attribute to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) who said: “One hundred thousand Adams came to this world- we are descendants of the last Adam”. According to an other tradition; Once Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) requested God for some wonder – God ordered Moses (peace be upon him) to reach a particular place, which was in a desert with no living being around. There he found a big ditch, Moses (peace be upon him) threw a stone in to the ditch , an unknown voice from ditch asked; ‘Who are you?’. Moses (peace be upon him) was proud of his knowledge, he introduced himself narrating his ancestral link with Adam (peace be upon him). The mysterious voice said; “About which Adam you are talking about? after every 100,000 years some human comes here and throws a stone, once asked, he narrates same ancestral link which you have narrated.” Hence this ditch is being filled with stones, 100,000 Adams! The humanity has been created and destroyed 100,000 times. God knows best
The modern theory of evolution has two basic flaws. It observes in fine details the gradation of species from one-cell organisms up to the chimpanzee and man, who the theory considers to be the next in line. Advocates of the evolution theory have admitted this and sought to explain by speaking about a “missing link”. The other basic flaw in this theory is that it cannot be proven in any scientifically acceptable way. Its argument is rather didactic. It makes a huge jump from scientific observation to theorization about life and existence. Thus, it imposes its theory on scientific findings. Perhaps it is appropriate to state that Muslim scientists have observed the gradation of species, not only in the animal world but also in the world of plants. They referred to the fact that there is a very fine line which separated one species from the next. They also observed that there are gaps: The one which separates the highest from the lowest, i.e. the chimpanzee from man. However, Muslim scientists did not seek to impose any arbitrary theory of life on their findings. They simply attributed this gradation to its appropriate cause, the will of Allah, the Creator of all. However on the basis of information which Allah has clearly provided in the Qur’an: “O mankind! We created you from a single pair of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes that you might get to know one another. Surely the noblest of you in the sight of Allah is he who is the most righteous. Allah is All-Knowledgeable, All-Aware.”(Qur’an;49:13). The first human came into existence as a result of Allah’s will when He decided to appoint a vicegerent on earth. Adam, the first human was created of clay and Allah breathed of His spirit into him. Therefore, man is the result of a combination of clay and spirit. How did Allah breathe His spirit into Adam whom He made of clay and when did all this happen, these are the details which He has not chosen to disclose. The knowledge of such details will not be of any help to human in the fulfillment of the task i.e. the building of human life on earth, through His obedience (worship) and service to Allah. Had such information been of benefit to humanity in this regard, it would not have been withheld.
CREATION IN ESSENCE
CREATION IN ESSENCE
The purpose of creation of humanity may be summarized:-
Worship of Allah: Allah is the source and centre of all power and all goodness. The human progress depends upon putting themselves into accord with His Will using their freedom of choice, granted by Allah while rejecting the path of evil. This is the worship or service which Allah demands from men and jinn: “I have not created jinns and mankind except to worship (serve) Me. I require no sustenance from them, nor do I ask that they should feed Me. Surely it is Allah Who is the giver of all sustenance, the Lord of Power, the Invincible.” (Qur’an;51:56-58).To understand why human beings need to worship Allah, one must first understand what is meant by words ‘yabudun’ (worship, service) it is derived from word ‘abud’’ means ‘slave’ who surrenders to the command of his master. The English term ‘worship’ comes from the Old English “weorthscipe” meaning ‘honor.’ Consequently, worship is defined as ‘the performance of devotional acts in honor of a deity: According to this meaning, man is instructed to show gratitude to Allah by glorifying Him, In the Qur’an, Allah says; “Glorify the praises of your Lord”(Qur’an;2:185). Worshipping (serving) Allah does not mean that people spend their entire lives in constant seclusion and absolute meditation. The true service (worship) to Allah is to live in this world according to His commands, and not to run away from it. Worship (service) is to obey what He desires and refrain from what He forbids as evident from the Tradition (Hadith) narrated by Ahmad, At-Tirmidhi, and Ibn Jarir: Once Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) was reciting the Verse: “They (Jews and Christians) have taken their rabbis and their monks-as well as the Christ, son of Mary-for their lords beside God, although they had been bidden to worship none but the One God, save whom there is no deity: the One who is utterly remote, in His limitless glory, from anything to which they may ascribe a share in His divinity!””(Qur’an;9:31). Adi bin Hatim, (who had reverted from Christianity) said; “O Allah’s Prophet! They (Jews and Christians) do not worship them (rabbis and monks)” Allah’s Messenger said, “They certainly do. They (i.e. Rabbis and monks) made legal things illegal, and illegal things legal, and they (i.e. Jews and Christians) followed them; and by doing so they really worshipped them.”(Tafsir At-Tabari, Vol.10, Page No. 114).
Hence worship means complete obedience, to God not mere rituals. Allah says: “It is not righteousness that ye turn your faces towards east or West; but it is righteousness- to believe In Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and the Messengers; to spend of your substance, out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; to be steadfast In prayer, and practice regular charity; to fulfill the covenant which ye have made; and to be firm and patient, In pain (or suffering) and adversity, and throughout all periods of panic. such are the people of truth, the Allah-fearing.”(Qur’an;2:177). Worship (service) is to know Him, to love Him, to obey His commands, like an obedient servant follows the commands of his master. To implement His laws in every aspect of life, to serve His cause by doing right and shunning evil and to be just to Him, to own self and to the fellow human beings. Thus; “Thee (alone) we worship; Thee alone we ask for help.”(Qur’an;2:5). Therefore the purpose of human life is; ‘Willingly Obedience to Allah’. However, the Almighty is not in need of human worship. “.. to Him belongs all that is in the heavens and in the earth; all are obedient to Him.”(Qur’an;2:116). The numerous angels all the time are busy in praising and glorifying Allah (Qur’an;39:75, 41:38,37:166), but there is difference, the angels are aware of the some of the mysteries of ‘Unseen World’ being part of that world, they are aware of the presence of God and have no choice, they are programmed to obey Allah only. On the other hand the human are not aware of ‘Unseen World’ (metaphysical), they have been granted the choice of good and evil, hence as vicegerent of God on earth, they are entitled to reward for worship and obedience while punishment for transgression. Allah did not create human beings out of a need on His part If not a single human worship Allah, it would not diminish His glory in any way, and if all of humankind worship Him, it would not increase His glory in any way. Allah is perfect. He alone exists without any needs. All created beings have needs, consequently, it is humankind that needs to worship Allah. Islam is the Din, complete code of life, hence the complete obedience to Allah makes every action performed by a Muslim according to His will as ‘worship’, be it doing honest business, performing duties, looking after destitute, speaking truth, be kind to parents, neighbors and fellow human being etcetera.
Adornments-Gift of God : The Muslims are balanced community, Allah says;“Thus have We made of you (Muslims) justly balanced, moderate community (Ummah Wasat)..”(Qur’an;2:143)” There is no merit merely in abstention or asceticism, though the humility or unselfishness that may go with asceticism may have its value. Allah says: “Say: Who has forbidden the beautiful (gifts, zenah) of Allah which He hath produced for his servants and the things clean and pure (which He hath provided) for sustenance? Say: they are in the life of this world for those who believe (and) purely for them on the Day of Judgment. Thus do We explain the signs in detail for those who understand. Say: The things that my Lord hath indeed forbidden are: shameful deeds whether open or secret; sins and trespasses against truth or reason; assigning of partners to God for which he hath given no authority; and saying things about God of which you have no knowledge.”(Qur’an;7:32-33). Asceticism often means the negation of art and beauty, it has no necessary sanctity attached to it. The beautiful and good things of life are really meant for, and should be the privilege of those with faith in Allah. If they do not always have them in this life, and if there is sometimes the semblance of others having them who do not deserve them, let it be remembered that this is a test from Allah. In the life to come they will be purely for the faithful believers. Use Allah’s gifts of all kinds with gratitude, but excess are not approved of by Allah. Christian monks are praised for particular virtues, though the monasticism is disapproved of, Allah says: “…But the monasticism which they invented for themselves We did not prescribe for them: (We commanded) only the seeking for the Good pleasure of Allah;…(Qur’an;57:27). Allah certainly requires that men shall renounce the idle pleasures of this world, and turn to the path which leads to Allah’s Good pleasure. But that does not mean asceticism. Allah’s service is done through pure lives in the turmoil of this world, hence the prayer: “Our Lord! Give unto us in the world that which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and guard us from the doom of Fire.”(Qur’an;2:201).
Balance in Resistance to Worldly Motives: While enjoying the legitimate adornments provided by God, man should resist all excessive appeals to worldly motives, by not making them the sole objective of this life. The balance must be maintained, because this world’s attractions; power, glory, wealth, children, status and all that men scramble for, are but a fleeting show and a trial; thus he should stand firm to His Message of eternal Unity: “Let neither their (non believer’s) wealth nor their children dazzle you. Through these Allah wants to punish them in this world and let their souls depart while they are still disbelievers.”(Qur’an;9:85); “Let not the Unbelievers think that Our granting of respite is good for their souls. We grant them respite so that they may add more to their sins. They shall have a disgraceful punishment.”(Qur’an;3:178); “You should know that your wealth and your children are, in fact, a test for you, and that Allah is He with Whom is your mighty reward.”(Qur’an;8:28). The possession or want of worldly attractions does not indicate a man’s real value or position in the coming world, the world which is to endure. Allah says: “We have adorned the earth with all kinds of ornaments to test the people and to see which of them do the best deeds.”(Qur’an;18:7). Yet they have their uses: “It is He Who has made the earth manageable for you so traverse ye through its tracts and enjoy of the Sustenance which He furnishes: but unto Him is the Resurrection.”(Qur’an;67:15).The worldly attractions are also a test a man’s sterling quality. He who becomes their slave loses rank in the next world. He who uses them if he gets them, and does not fall into despair if he does not get them, shows his true mettle and quality. His conduct proclaims him. In describing Allah’s gifts and mercies and watchful care in this temporary sojourn of human on this earth, it is made clear that the ultimate end is the Hereafter. The real Beyond, which is the goal, is the life after the ‘Resurrection’. If people feel safe on land, it is because Allah has made this earth amenable, manageable and serviceable to them. It may be kept in view that while most of the things are conveniently understandable some may not be. God’s ways are beyond full comprehension of the human intellect, rational understanding of every aspect thereof may not be always possible. According to a not very authentic Hadith, Allah is attributed to have said that: “I was a hidden treasure, and I loved that I be known, so I created the world”.
Trial Through Willful Obedience of God: In brief the purpose of creation is to test the human during limited life span on earth, those who obey Him by their free will and live according to His guidance, will be rewarded and those who disobey, will be punished in hereafter. It is evident from these verses in Qur’an; “The One Who created death and life, so that He may put you to test, to find out which of you is best in deeds: He is the All-Mighty, the All-Forgiving.”(Qur’an;67:2); “We shall surely test your steadfastness with fear and famine, with loss of property, life and produce. Give good news to those who endure with patience; who, when afflicted with calamity, say: “We belong to Allah and to Him we shall return.” Such are the people on whom there are blessings and Mercy from Allah; and they are the ones that are rightly guided.”(Qur’an;2:155-157).
Keeping First Individual Covenant of Man with God: As each individual in the posterity of Adam had a separate existence from the time of Adam, and a Covenant was taken from all of them, which is binding accordingly on each individual descendants of the Children of Adam(all humanity), born or unborn, without any limit of time. On their first creation, the humanity affirmed, Allah as the only Lord, which is ingrained in the human conscious. (Qur’an;7:172). Adam’s seed carries on the existence of Adam and succeeds to his spiritual heritage. Hence even those who do not receive the message, their instincts indicate the existence of one God, so he should avoid evil and perform good deeds. Worship of One God by some primitive African and Australian tribes is due to this nature. Humanity has been given by Allah certain powers and faculties (Qur’an;67:23). This creates special spiritual obligations which must be discharged faithfully. These obligations may from a legal point of view be considered as arising from implied Covenant, that man must acknowledge that Allah is the Creator, Cherisher, and Sustainer: therefore man acknowledge his duty to Him: When he so testify concerning himself, the obligation is as it were assumed by him; for it follows from his very nature when it is pure and uncorrupted. The latent faculties in man are enough to teach him the distinction between good and evil, to warn him of the dangers that beset his life (Qur’an;91:7-10). But to awaken and stimulate them, a personal appeal is made to each individual through the “still small voice” within him. This in its uncorrupted state acknowledges the truth and, as it were, swears its Covenant with Allah. There is, therefore, no excuse for any individual to say, either (1) that he was unmindful, or (2) that he should not be punished for the sins of his fathers whom he followed blindly, because his punishment (if any) comes from his personal responsibility, because he was granted conscious, wisdom, freedom of choice and guidance through scriptures and messengers of Allah, but he chose to reject the faith and the higher spiritual influences. However those people (of all times and places), who could not receive the guidance through messengers of God or His scriptures, are not expected to be judged for the Law (Shari’a) but upon the natural belief in one God and performance of good deeds.
Sincerity of Faith: Faith is a matter of personal conviction, and does not depend on worldly motives. Worship should depend on pure and sincere Faith: “Say: “My Lord hath commanded justice; and that ye set your whole selves (to him) at every time and place of prayer and call upon him making your devotion sincere as in his sight: such as he created you in the beginning so shall ye return.”(Qur’an;7:29). However worship often does not conform to achieve the desired level. There are motives of worldly gains, ancestral custom, social conventions, imitative instincts, or a lethargic instinct to shirk from enquiring Into the real significance of solemn acts and the motives behind them, reduce a great deal of the world’s worship to sin, selfishness, or futility. Symbolic idols may themselves be merely instruments for safeguarding the privileges of a selfish priestly class, or the ambitions, greed, or lust of private individuals. Hence Islam insist on the pure service which include worship and obedience of the One True Allah alone not through any one else.
Faith and Deeds for Salvation: Faith is perquisite for reward for good deeds. The Allah says: “ (O Muhammad) tell them: “Should we tell you the worst kind of losers relating to their deeds? Those whose all efforts in this worldly life had gone astray from the Right Way, but all along they were under the delusion that they were doing good deeds; they are the ones who are disregarding the revelations of their Lord and the fact that they will meet Him for accountability of their deeds in the Hereafter, so their deeds will become null and will not carry any weight on the Day of Judgment. Thus the reward of such people will be Hell; because they had no faith and because they made My messages and My apostles a target of their mockery. However, those who believe and do good deeds, they will be entertained with the Gardens of Paradise to live therein for ever and they will never desire to go anywhere else.”(Qur’an;18:103-108). Hence humanity should endeavor to combine ‘faith’ with ‘good deeds’ to attain salvation in hereafter, through His mercy.
The universe comprises, the whole cosmic system, which include the galaxies and a lot of haze. Earth’s Sun is one star among the billions of stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. With all the advancement, the scientists have not yet been able to resolve the mystery of Creation. The most popular theory of creation, closer to the scientific evidence is the Big Bang theory. While even the expanse of universe still remains a mystery, the thinkers and theologians have evolved their own concepts, doctrine and myths of creation of universe based on their imagination, knowledge and superstition. The cosmogonic myth tells the story of the creation of the world like Self Emergence, World Parents, Cosmic Egg and Earth Divers but Creation by the Supreme Creator remains a popular doctrine among many cultures, especially among the Abrahamic faiths. The ‘logos’ of Greek philosophy provided the inspiration for the Christian philosophical theology to call logos (Word) as “the first-begotten Son of God” (against the teachings of Prophet Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) and Bible) describing the role of Jesus as the principle of God active in the creation and ordering of the cosmos and in the revelation of the divine plan of salvation.
The story of Adam and Eve narrated in Qur’an and Bible, is in reality an allegory of human destiny. The role of Satan (Iblis) in Qur’an specifically deals with the existence of evil, with enhanced role, without compromising on Supremacy of God, which the other philosophies could not resolve with in monotheism. In his earlier state of virtuousness man was unaware of the existence of evil and, therefore, of the ever-present necessity of making a choice between the many possibilities of action and behaviour. The growth of his consciousness-symbolized by the willful act of disobedience to God’s command-changed all this. It transformed him from a purely instinctive being into a full-fledged human entity known. A human being capable of discriminating between right and wrong and thus of choosing his way of life. In this deeper sense, the allegory of the Fall does not describe a retrogressive happening but, rather, a new stage of human development: an opening of doors to moral considerations. By forbidding him to “approach this tree”, God made it possible for man to act wrongly-and, therefore, to act rightly as well: and so man became endowed with that ‘moral free will’ which distinguishes him from all other conscious beings. Every human is born free of sin, pure in nature, thus the purpose of human creation is; Service (worship) i.e. ‘Willing Obedience to Allah’. The worship rituals are just a part of broader concept of total obedience to God in all spheres of life. The theory of evolution has been opposed by most Christian and Muslim theologians. The theory having “missing links”, cannot be proven in a scientifically acceptable way. How did Allah breathe His spirit into Adam whom He made of clay and when did all this happen, He has chosen not to disclose. Had such information been of benefit to humanity in this regard, it would not have been withheld. In Islam the creation of the universe and humanity may be understood as a part of ‘Grand Design’ of God, which is based upon trial, balance, Justice and Mercy. God has granted freedom of choice to the human through guidance, intellect and reason, resulting in individual responsibility and accountability. However He accepts repentance of sinners and forgive them but those who die in state of rebellion will be entitled to punishment in Hereafter. Humanity should endeavor to combine ‘faith’ with ‘good deeds’ to attain salvation in the hereafter.