Title

OLD TEXTS, NEW MASKS: A CRITICAL REVIEW OF MISREADING EVOLUTION ONTO HISTORICAL ISLAMIC TEXTS: with Shoaib Ahmed Malik, “Old Texts, New Masks: A Critical Review of Misreading Evolution onto Historical Islamic Texts”; and James Henry Collin, “Soul Making, Theosis, and Evolutionary History: An Irenaean Approach.”

Author First name, Last name, Institution

Shoaib Ahmed Malik, Zayed University

ORCID Identifiers

0000-0001-5050-474X

Document Type

Article

Source of Publication

Zygon

Publication Date

6-1-2019

Abstract

© 2019 by the Joint Publication Board of Zygon With the increasing interest in Islam and evolution, some Islamic thinkers have vehemently rejected evolution, while others have eagerly embraced it. However, those seeking to embrace evolution sometimes err in their interpretation of historical writings. Indeed, there are texts written by famous historical scholars of Islam who seem to suggest that humans have evolved from lower forms of species. These include Ibn Khaldūn, Jalāl ad-Dīn Rūmī, al-Jāhiz, and The Brethren of Purity (Ikhwān al Safā). Although this may be true, such readings are a mistaken interpretation of the aforementioned authors who are actually referring to some form of the scalae naturae (the Great Chain of Being). This reference to the Great Chain of Being is unknown to some contemporary readers who mistakenly believe these writers to be discussing an evolutionary or a proto-evolutionary theory. This article demonstrates how and why these historical records do not actually represent any notion of evolution as it is currently understood, in the hope of avoiding any further erroneous claims that seem to be proliferating among modern thinkers.

ISSN

0591-2385

Publisher

Blackwell Publishing Ltd

Volume

54

Issue

2

First Page

501

Last Page

522

Disciplines

Life Sciences

Keywords

al-Jāhiz, evolution, Great Chain of Being, Ibn Khaldūn, Ikhwān al Safā, Islam, Muslims, Rūmī

Scopus ID

85065802473

Indexed in Scopus

yes

Open Access

no

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