Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research

Collection: Evolution in the Scales of Scripture

The topic of biological evolution is at the heart of the debate concerning the compatibility of religion and science. Yaqeen Institute has released a collection of articles on the subject of Islam and Human Evolution, featuring scholarly research presenting different perspectives.

The synergy of science and scripture is taken up in a paper by Dr. Nazir Khan (physician, clinical neuroscientist, and Imam) and theologian Dr. Yasir Qadhi. The authors argue that the very presumption that religion must defend itself against science arises from a failure to understand (a) the epistemology of science and (b) the vast empirical knowledge about human beings for which philosophical naturalism provides no meaningful ontological foundation. This paper argues for a critical evaluation rather than calling for either blanket rejection or accommodation of evolution.

Yaqeen has also featured two additional perspectives from guest authors, reflecting the diversity of viewpoints in the community.

Arguing against the acceptance of biological evolution as a whole on the basis of empirical failures, religious scholar Dr. Isra Yazicioglu and quantum physicist Dr. Yamina Bouguenaya note the role that interpretation plays in scientific theories and the problems with the mechanisms underlying human evolution, with additional commentary from Dr. Ilhan Akan, a molecular biologist.

On the other hand, religious scholar Dr. David S. Jalajel argues that Islamic theology does not actually negate human evolution based on the traditional stance of tawaqquf (theological non-commitment) on matters of the unseen that are not explicitly mentioned in the texts.

Through this collection of papers, Yaqeen aims to elevate the discourse on this subject and invites readers to share their thoughts, reflections, ideas, and questions on these papers. Regardless of which of these three perspectives appeals to an individual, one will be able to find much to learn and reflect on in the content of all of these essays.