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← BBC Asia Network discussion on Islam and evolution

BBC Asia Network discussion on Islam and evolution - Comments

bubbub's Avatar Comment 1 by bubbub

I think you meant you're on at about 54 (not 45) minutes if you're refering to the iplayer recording. T'was an interesting discussion!

Thu, 01 Dec 2011 23:52:21 UTC | #894891

myCousinLucy's Avatar Comment 2 by myCousinLucy

(im sorry to repeat some of the points in the show, but I typed most of this before listening to it.)

Do they have the right to walk out of lectures? Yes, unless there is a university policy that considers this as an act of disruption. Will they graduate with a degree in medicine? Most likely; if they memorize the material at home and regurgitate it in the exam. Will they make good doctors/scientists ? I doubt it. (Unless they are fine with hating their job). As some have pointed out in the interview, Pharmacology is just one of the fields that requires the application of the principles of evolution. Treating patients/Designing drugs would be hypocritical (maybe blasphemous?). Also for example, the use of pig hormones in some treatments of Multiple Sclerosis. Prophet muhammed :"Allah does not put your cure in that which He has forbidden for you."

I believe it is the duty of every muslim to spread the religion and that includes teaching its followers that the word of allah is absolute and unalterable. They are taught that "the devil will try to tempt you to believe otherwise” and that you should stay strong. When this sort of message is ingrained in kids, as soon as they hear words like evolution, there is one of two responses: 1. The lazy ones just block their ears (Like the two girls in the interview who had "an open mind") / walk out of class. OR they say that there is no contradiction with religion. OR say that it is an agenda to convert everyone to atheists. 2. The good debaters find every way to "disprove" evolution or find alternate stories like intelligent design.

The claim about hostility from evolutionists that religious folk encounter, are poor apologetic statements. The job of professors is to teach proven theories with evidence and NEVER have they (or will they) employ techniques like death threats. The aggressiveness from people like Prof. Dawkins is purely verbal/textual and is open to debate. It originates from the fact that there is so much stone-age nonsense being preached and followed (leading to utterly immoral acts) when we have perfectly sound, cross-referenced, peer-reviewed and human tested & applied science.

I hope there is some indication of the beliefs of these students on their degree credentials: "Muhammed MD.A"
[.
A - cure lies within the faith in allah]

Fri, 02 Dec 2011 01:14:02 UTC | #894908

TheRationalizer's Avatar Comment 3 by TheRationalizer

54 minutes on iplayer, 45 minutes on the downloadable mp3 :)

Fri, 02 Dec 2011 18:13:03 UTC | #895091

Ranting Socrates's Avatar Comment 4 by Ranting Socrates

I have a cousin who wants to be a doctor. She doesnt accept evolution, when I debate her on it she brings up the similar points we have all heard before. Anyways, I asked her as a future doctor, and as a person who has to go biology classes, what does she do? her reply was that she puts on a mask, saying she believed in evolution, and that was it.

Fri, 02 Dec 2011 22:06:21 UTC | #895142

blitz442's Avatar Comment 5 by blitz442

Comment 4 by Ranting Socrates

One has to wonder how evolution is being presented in these classes. Are professors assuming too much and glossing over the crucial basics about how we know evolution occurred?

Fri, 02 Dec 2011 22:11:38 UTC | #895144

Atheist Mike's Avatar Comment 6 by Atheist Mike

The BBC is a farce. Take this rubbish for example:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-15977813

They took the sarcastic words of a comedian seriously... They just keep bending over backwards to satisfy 'the misunderstood' and it's bloody annoying.

Sat, 03 Dec 2011 01:22:24 UTC | #895185

Ranting Socrates's Avatar Comment 7 by Ranting Socrates

Comment 5:

I don't know . . . . I really don't know. My sister told me that her grade 10 biology teacher said that evolution is only one way of looking at the world. So when I tell her it is a fact, she happily brings that up ('' do you know more than a teacher?'')

Sat, 03 Dec 2011 05:17:52 UTC | #895210

danconquer's Avatar Comment 8 by danconquer

Comment 6 by Atheist Mike :

They took the sarcastic words of a comedian seriously... They just keep bending over backwards to satisfy 'the misunderstood' and it's bloody annoying.

Comedian? I always thought Jeremy Clarkson was a 'broadcaster' and 'writer'. His style may be distinctly sardonic but it's not as though does gigs is it? He writes columns on contemporary matters in The Times afterall.

Besides if your complaint is about people taking his words seriously, surely your bile should be aimed not at the BBC - which specifically authorised and discussed his 'gag' - but at the wider public who deluged the BBC with complaints as soon as the comments were made. (For what it's worth, had he simply said 'They should be shot' I doubt anyone would have noticed... It was the 'execute them in front of their families' which seemed a needlessly vicious afterthought, and par for the course for an anti-science loon like Clarkson.)

Saying it's a 'joke' is if that were a license to say anything is bogus. It would mean that it would be acceptable to make 'jokes' about lynching black people or raping women on pre-watershed television. If you have a look at certain tabloid websites you will see that the highest rated comments are those which appear to take the comments not as a 'joke' but as some sort of literal injunction. Unfortunately we inhabit a world where lots of countries really do execute trade unionists in front of their families, rendering any 'joke' value questionable.

The BBC arranged for someone to say something edgy at 7 o'clock in the evening... Thousands of people complained. The BBC had the good grace to make a swift apology and has now made it clear they consider the matter closed. What is the big problem in that? Apologies are nice. They are social. I like apologies, where they are reasonably warranted. If you analyse the media carefully you will see that it is actually the usual tabloid gutter rags who are, ironically, desperately trying to keep this story non-running now and turn it into some sort of 'scandal'... Shouldn't your ire be directed at them instead of trying to manufacture another tedious anti-BBC episode.

Sat, 03 Dec 2011 10:50:57 UTC | #895243

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 9 by Steve Zara

Comment 6 by Atheist Mike

They took the sarcastic words of a comedian seriously... They just keep bending over backwards to satisfy 'the misunderstood' and it's bloody annoying.

I'm glad they are bending over backwards. Clarkson isn't a comedian. He's not some satire of inanity like the wonderful Alan Partridge, he is the real thing. He is a very highly paid presenter who was being interviewed - and presumably being paid to be interviewed - to express his views.

It's a shame that the BBC feels that it wants to promote such views as acceptable.

Sat, 03 Dec 2011 11:05:12 UTC | #895247

Dirty Kuffar's Avatar Comment 10 by Dirty Kuffar

Here is an article by Professor Steve Jones on Darwin,Evolution & the Denial of Science ; link text

its in a broadsheet rather than a tabloid, so the islamo apologists won't be able to use that straw man as an excuse to ignore it.

Sat, 03 Dec 2011 11:08:41 UTC | #895248

Moderator's Avatar Comment 11 by Moderator

Moderators' message

Can we not get sidetracked by Jeremy Clarkson please. He has nothing to do with the OP.

Thank you.

The mods

Sat, 03 Dec 2011 11:22:41 UTC | #895252

myCousinLucy's Avatar Comment 12 by myCousinLucy

Comment 7 by Ranting Socrates :

Comment 5:

I don't know . . . . I really don't know. My sister told me that her grade 10 biology teacher said that evolution is only one way of looking at the world. So when I tell her it is a fact, she happily brings that up ('' do you know more than a teacher?'')

I think that's a fair question that requires a patient answer. In short the answer is : The scientific method has proved it to be accurate and usable.

Scientists are ruthless and dispassionate when it comes to accepting any theory. The theories developed have been reviewed by experts in the field and tested numerous times before arriving at conclusions and developing everyday solutions (ex:medicine) based on that. The application of our knowledge of evolution is something that we simply could not live without today.

Pretty much everthing you see from computers to automobiles start from some accepted scientific theory (ex: in physics/thermodynamics). The only reason you don't hear anyone say "Newton's laws of gravity are 'just one way' of describing falling apples", is because there is no obvious contradiction with the Bible/Quran.

A teacher may have a PhD in evolution/genetics but there are some (ex:Dr. Francis Collins) who still hold their faith. So I am not surprised, and would NOT expect all students who understand this to debate their teachers. But its another case, if it affects their academic results.

Sat, 03 Dec 2011 11:47:52 UTC | #895256

GPWC's Avatar Comment 13 by GPWC

I listened to the debate all the way through and some of the callers gave a good impression of quietly Celebratiing their Ignorance as being discussed on RD.net right below this thread.

Mon, 05 Dec 2011 19:40:33 UTC | #895915

joka11's Avatar Comment 14 by joka11

I believe the trend of Religion is compatible with Evolution is a good thing. Allow me to briefly present my reasoning.

Humans are a very imperfect animals and we take a really, really long time to improve on anything of significant value. Having a better understanding of science and the physical world by the general public is a good thing. Better education of the public is always welcomed.

Reconciling religion with evolution definitely leads to following thing:

More people will accept Evolution. Religion is still important to many people and psychologically speaking people wish their important beliefs and ideas to be right. Therefore if religion and evolution are compatible then there is a higher chance that people to whom religion is quite important will give the theory a chance.

Reconciling religion with evolution definitely shows the following thing:

The society is becoming less religiously fundamental. A society moving from a position where it rejects science to a position where it must adapt its religious views to the scientific realities of the world is a good thing. It shows that knowledge and truth is slowly seeping in.

Maybe I am wrong. Would love to hear why if I am.

Mon, 05 Dec 2011 22:27:01 UTC | #895968

TheRationalizer's Avatar Comment 15 by TheRationalizer

People can reconcile evolution with their religion if they wish. Their arguments are usually piss poor, but if that is enough to convince them to accept cold hard facts whilst holding onto an unfounded belief that is their choice.

The issue is with those who ignore the facts to cling to a fantasy.

Tue, 06 Dec 2011 14:58:37 UTC | #896172

ArabAtheist1's Avatar Comment 16 by ArabAtheist1

I'm a medical student in Lebanon, and they teach evolution at the university that I'm at, and sadly islamic students simply reject evolution! Yes, it sounds absurd, but that's the way it is for these students, even the smartest ones, and when I ask them why they simply reply "because it conflicts with my religious views". Sigh...

Tue, 06 Dec 2011 20:02:53 UTC | #896271

MilitantNonStampCollector's Avatar Comment 17 by MilitantNonStampCollector

Comment 14 by joka11

I believe the trend of Religion is compatible with Evolution is a good thing.


I don't believe people fully realize the implications of evolution as to how it refutes supernatural claims. Rather, they are half-hearted and wishy-washy on evolution thus they simply do not know how it contradicts their holy books. If evolution and religion are truly compatible you must believe the following: that some kind of immaterial deity created the universe, then did nothing for about 4.5 billion years, all the while he watched extinctions and catastrophic events but he still must have known man would evolve from the lower animals. Why didn't he cut out the crap and just have us made from square one? Anything called a god would not have to wait billions of years for his 'most loved' creations.

Tue, 06 Dec 2011 20:08:21 UTC | #896272

Vicktor's Avatar Comment 18 by Vicktor

Do you really expect Muslims to simply flush down the toilet a lifetime of daily worship? Not to mention a small fortune spent in the name of their religion.

Wed, 07 Dec 2011 01:14:26 UTC | #896335

TheRationalizer's Avatar Comment 19 by TheRationalizer

Comment 16 by ArabAtheist1 : I'm a medical student in Lebanon, and they teach evolution at the university that I'm at, and sadly islamic students simply reject evolution!

Do you have to keep quiet about it, or is it easy to be an atheist in Lebanon?

A member of staff at a UK university told me his university was having problems with gangs of Muslims threatening other Muslims for not conforming to their views.

Wed, 07 Dec 2011 08:49:19 UTC | #896392

ArabAtheist1's Avatar Comment 20 by ArabAtheist1

It's very hard! especially for a girl, the social pressure is enormous... and yes muslims are very arrogant and they have this extreme egocentricity when it comes to their religion. However, there are underground networks here, (we happen to work undercover within the human rights club at my university, lol) and the amount of atheists/agnostics is actually alot, much more than I ever expected. Same is true for other countries (even in Iran and Saudi Arabia) but people are VERY closeted when it comes to admitting their atheism...

Thu, 08 Dec 2011 15:58:55 UTC | #896789

Alan4discussion's Avatar Comment 21 by Alan4discussion

It is unfortunate, that in the competitive race of understanding life, some parents are determined to set their children up on the starting blocks facing backwards.

Sun, 11 Dec 2011 20:04:53 UTC | #897951

crucialfictionofjesus's Avatar Comment 22 by crucialfictionofjesus

Most baffling aspect of all these religious debates is...WHY?? Why do we all waste so much time and mental effort in something we know is futile? How can anyone use logic to challenge mystical belief- I have tried and failed; guilty as charged!

Thu, 29 Dec 2011 16:36:42 UTC | #903564