LONDON: In ongoing protests, Muslim students including trainee doctors at Britain’s University College London have walked out of biology lectures on evolution, reports The Daily Mail. The students and trainee doctors claim evolution clashes with their creationist beliefs they say are established in the Holy Quran.
Muslim opponents to Darwinism state that God created the world, mankind and all known species in a single act of creation, rather than the evolutionary process of gradual change through random mutations and natural selection.
University College London Professors have expressed concern over the rising number of biology students boycotting lectures on evolution, which form an important part of the syllabus.
Earlier this year Usama Hasan, imam of the Masjid al-Tawhid mosque in Leyton received death threats for suggesting that Darwinism and Islam might be compatible. According to The Daily Mail, sources within the group Muslims4UK partly blamed the growing popularity of creationist beliefs on Turkish author Harun Yahya who has written several books denouncing evolution and Charles Darwin.
Yahya associates Dawinism with Nazism and his books are and videos are available at many Islamic bookshops in the UK and Pakistan. He regularly features on Islamic television channels.
The evolution debate in Islam
According to an earlier report by T. V. Padma on the Science and Development Network website, acceptance of evolution varies widely across the Islamic world, demonstrating that stereotypical ideas about Islam and evolution are wrong.
More than 80 per cent of Pakistani doctors in the United States accepted the theory of evolution, including microbial, animal and human evolution.
The majority also believed that one could accept the theory of evolution and hold religious beliefs at the same time.
But most Malaysian doctors (in Malaysia) rejected the theory of evolution, especially with regard to humans.