Sunday, March 04, 2007

Intelligent Design Conference in Turkey

It seems that Turkey will be the conduit for anti-evolutionary ideas to the Islamic world. On the one hand there is Harun Yahya (see SRN: Feb 3, 2007), who aligns his organization with Creationist scientists in the US (promoting the idea that all species were created as is), and on the other hand there is Mustafa Akyol, who wants to promote the idea of Intelligent Design (ID) of the variety supported by the Discovery Institute also in the US (promoting the idea that evolutionary theory cannot explain certain biological features and that the best explanation is that these have been designed by some intelligence). So on February 24th, there was an ID conference in Istanbul that was apparently attended by 500 people.

The conference was titled "The Origin of Life On Earth" (you can find talk abstracts at
First, Mustafa Akyol made an opening speech in which he criticized the mindset of Turkish intellectuals who equate science with materialism without question. In the speeches given by David Berlinski and Paul Nelson, a brief but comprehensive criticism of Darwinism and naturalism was introduced along with a summary of basic Intelligent Design arguments. John Lennox made a broader criticism of scientific materialism and reductionism. The last speaker, Alpaslan Açıkgenç, explained how Islam looks at science, nature and life. The presentations were followed by questions and answers. the basic goal was to attack naturalism. It doesn't appear that these talks were really addressing the issue of the origin of life on Earth - unless we include the last talk that was relying directly on the Quran for evidence. After all evolutionary theory explains the diversity of life on Earth but doesn't really address the issue of origin of life nor does ID. (Check here for What is the theory of evolution?)

It will be interesting to see how ID does in Muslim countries. It sounds vaguely scientific and it talks about 'design' which resonates well with several passages in the Quran. The ID proponents in the US go to extreme lengths to not specify the "Designer" as God. This way they can make an attempt to sneak ID in the school system without violating the Church & State separation. However, this issue doesn't exist in most Muslim countries and there is a real danger of such a theory being brought into schools (and colleges). Ironically, Turkey may be one of the few Muslim countries where ID with explicit religious connections will have a hard time getting into the education system.

1 comment:

william said...

please muslims creationist,,,muslims intelligent design,,,hare krishnas creationist,,,intelligent design,,,many hindus are creationist,1 billion hindus,1 billion muslims,most are creationist or intelligent design, creationist astronomy,or intelligent design astronomy,earth has 23.5 degree tilt from sun,giving us 4 seasons,northern hemisphere heats air water land,then southern,by GODS brillant design,lunar tides put oxygen to the water,cleaning lakes ,oceans daily,ELSHADDAIS brillant design,moon is right distance,if much closer,tides would be too large,farther,tides too small.earths ozone layer & electromagnetic field shield us from 8 types of dangerous radiation from the sun,not an accident from a BIG bang explosion,explosions produce junk,not is proper distance from sun,not too close or far,mars a little smaller,dont have the gravity to hold much atmosphere,earth has proper gravity to give us enough.the heart pumps blood to the lungs,then blood gets oxygen,to the rest of the body,all this is too complex for the genious evolutionist,but the rest of you smart folks got it.the evolutionary science teachers rape kids,public money"tithes & offerings from the state by law" goes to support the atheist evolutionary propaganda,while religious people give our money to support our religious beliefs by choice,to have evolutionists try by law to keep evolution as the only thing taught in school by force,usa is heading to the chinese anti religion communist atheist belief by law,teaching only atheist evolution,killing all that believe in GOD,like russia & others,put you by force into an atheist reeducation prison with hard labor,unless you take away the richard dawkins evolutionist out of his bully pulpit,claiming if you believe in a creator you are mentally is at the proper distance from sun,moon,for you to ,"lava beds worms ocean",JESUS said worms in hell never die,eating you.worms in hellfire must be different,than those living near ocean lava,,,earths ozone layer,& electromagnetic field protects us from 8 types of dangerous solar radiation,BY GODS brillant design,evolutionists insist you be taught this is all an accident