The Politics of Evolution
In the UK there has been an agenda by the British government to secularise the Muslim community and make them accept the values of Secularism and Democracy.
Recently there have been many articles, debates and discussion on the subject of the evolution theory and its place within religion. A lot of this discussion has taken place in the context of whether Muslims accept evolution or not, and if not, why not as evolution is now a well established ‘fact’, which cannot be rejected. This article is not intended to be a refutation of why evolution is not a part of Islam, for this is a well established within the Islamic tradition, that Adam (as) was created by Allah (swt) and Allah (swt) blew Adam’s (as) soul into a clay human body, which Allah (swt) shaped and fashioned.
The question I would like my reader’s to focus on is why has this subject of the evolution theory suddenly become an issue within Islamic circles as if this is a new topic. This theory has been around for many decades and most Muslim scholars and intellectuals, accepted that it had no place within Islam as it contradicts clearly stated texts within the Qur’an, yet this theory has raised its ugly head again and this time it is being used to tell Muslims that at the least this must be an acceptable theory within Islam and at the most that it must be accepted as the narrative of Adam’s (as) creation. Many have tackled this issue from the perspective of theology and fiqh, but very a few have looked at the political ramifications and context to this whole discussion.
In the UK there has been an agenda by the British government to secularise the Muslim community and make them accept the values of Secularism and Democracy. This has been stated within the government’s own PREVENT agenda among other reports and documents. The way the government has done this is to deliberately raise, what the government views as, topical issues within Islam which do not agree with the values of Secularism and Democracy in order to show how Islam has a ‘backward view’ in these topical issue; then to force the Muslim community into line by trying to highlight the so called ‘backwardness’ of Islam and the fact that society has moved on from these primitive values and Muslims now need to accept the values of the West as they are the only standard that all should live by.
Therefore it is no coincidence that we have seen how Muslims were told that they should accept that their Prophet (saw) will be insulted and that this is a part of freedom of speech; we were also lectured about how Muslims should allow Muslim woman to lead men in the Friday and the 5 obligatory prayers and this is about the equality of the sexes; that Muslims must accept homosexuals into Islam as this is about treating people of all sexual orientation equally; that Muslims should allow Muslim woman to marry non-Muslim men, as all people and religions are the same. Within this context fits the current discussion about evolution that it is about further trying to secularise the Muslim community so they become a part of Britain, adopt its values and forget their Ummah and Islam.
In all these areas, Islam’s rulings, in origin, have been very clear and it has never been a discussion among the vast majority of scholars of Islam, regardless of their school of thought, barring a handful of scholars who are either very obscure or their view was in the minority view of their school and hence forgotten until revived recently. Yet these obscure views are now being given a new lease of life and being made prominent in order to undermine Islam and subject it to the standards and values of Secularism and Democracy and this was never the intention of the scholars who even gave these minority views in the first place.
Yet today we have so called Muslims scholars, Imams and theologians who are advocating these obscure views and digging them up to show to the Muslim community in Britain and ultimately globally that Islam agrees with Secularism and Democracy and that Muslims should not feel uncomfortable able this. The government funds these Muslim organisations and individuals to do their bidding as it is easier to secularise the Muslim community using their own people rather than trying to use government ministers and hence the current discussion is now evolution and in due time some other new issue will take its place.
Some have tried to argue that what is wrong with this dialogue and debate, that this is healthy and it will get Muslims thinking about these issues. Firstly in certain issues there is no dialogue or debate for example, there is not dialogue or debate about insulting the Prophet (saw) and his family, that is a red line and it must always stay a red line otherwise we would have accepted implicitly that insulting the Prophet (saw) is acceptable and hence accepted freedom of speech. The second issue is that the moment we open the doors of debate and dialogue to these matters which are clear and fundamental in our deen, then it is open season on everything else in Islam as well, this is evident from the last couple years. The more the Muslim community has been accommodating of these disingenuous types of debates and dialogues the more the Muslim community has come under pressure to compromise on further issues.
Lastly under this dialogue and debate banner we must be careful to make sure that these types of discussion do not find their way to in the area of legitimate difference of opinion because there seems to be an apparent difference of opinion among scholars. If this happens, then what type of Islam will we have left our future generations, an Islam fraught with differences of opinion on every subject from the most fundamental of questions like where did humans come from, to the simple questions and this will lead us down the same path as Christianity where they cannot even agree on whether Jesus existed or not. If this happens to Islam then we can expect it to go down the same route as Christianity in this country and that is clear for all to see. This also would mean that the British government has achieved its goals and aims, as it wants to do to Islam what is has done to Christianity, to subject it to the standards and values of Secularism.
The original duty of the Muslim community in this country is one of calling the non-Muslims to Islam and to show them that Islam is the only alternative to the current misery they are facing due to the economic meltdown within western countries and this is an opportunity for the Muslim community here to show them how Islam will deal with this and other problems which this society faces, so we should not allow this discussion on the evolution theory to distract us and take us away from the real discussions and debates that are happening within this society.
And who is better in speech than one who invites to Allah and does righteousness and says, “Indeed, I am of the Muslims.” [Quran 41:33]