Guests of Adnan Oktar The international works of Mr. Adnan Oktar (Harun Yahya) 2 nd The Origin of Life & The Universe Conference 2017 Fossil Hunter Dr. Anjeanette Roberts' Personal Motto' Dr. Fazale Rana's comments on the idea of theistic evolution Dr. Fabrizio Fratus: Why are materialism and Darwinism threats to society Dr. Carlo Alberto Cossano canlı fosilleri anlatıyor Jeff Gardner: If Darwin knew about the amazing structure of DNA, would he still formula.. Oktar Babuna’s lecture Dr. Anjeanette Roberts’s lecture during the International Conference... Dr.Anjeanette Roberts speaking about the complexity of the cell Dr. Carlo Cossano hücrelerin nasıl karar alıp bu kararları nasıl... Dr. Carlo Alberto Cossano: Can coincidences or randomness explain the origin of life? Jeff Gardner: The lack of transitional forms in the fossil record Jeff Gardner: How did evolutionary theory become this theory that everyone must obey? Dr Carlo Cossano expounds his view why evolution theory is unscientific Dr. Carlo Cossano: Is Cyanobacteria a simple organism? Dr. Carlo Cossano: Bacteria fossil is sufficient... The Origin of Life & The Universe Conference 2016 Fazale Rana Dr. Carlo Cossano: The fact that protein cannot form unless the cell . Dr. Carlo Cossano: What do the fossils tell us? Dr. Fazale Rana: Dr. Fazale Rana's comments on Darwinist education Dr. Fabrizio Fratus: If Darwin knew about the DNA... Dr. Fazale Rana: What do fossils tell us? What is the importance of Cambrian period fossils? Dr. Fabrizio Fratus: If Darwin knew about the DNA... Interview with Rabbi Adlerstein Percussion Performance at the 2nd International Conference on the Origin of Life and The Universe Percussion Performance at the 2nd International Conference on the Origin of Life and The Universe (2) The Plaque Ceremony at the 2nd International Conference on the Origin of Life and The Universe 2 nd The Origin of Life & The Universe Conference 2017 The Origin of Life and Universe Conference 2016 The Origin of Life & The Universe / Q&A session

ADNAN OKTAR  Today, the relativity of time is a proven scientific fact. This was revealed by Einstein's theory of relativity during the early part of the 20th century. Until then, it was not known that time was relative, nor that it could change according to the circumstances. Yet, the renowned scientist Albert Einstein proved this fact by discovering the theory of relativity. He showed that time is dependent on mass and velocity.

However, the Qur'an had already included information about time's being relative! Some verses about the subject read:

… A day with your Lord is equivalent to a thousand years in the way you count. (Qur'an, 22:47)

He directs the whole affair from heaven to earth. Then it will again ascend to Him on a Day whose length is a thousand years by the way you measure. (Qur'an, 32:5)

The angels and the Spirit ascend to Him in a day whose length is fifty thousand years. (Qur'an, 70:4)

The fact that the relativity of time is so definitely mentioned in the Qur'an, which began to be revealed in 610, is more evidence that it is a divine book.

ADNAN OKTAR  In 1929, in the California Mount Wilson observatory, an American astronomer by the name of Edwin Hubble made one of the greatest discoveries in the history of astronomy. While he observed the stars with a giant telescope, he found out that the light from them was shifted to the red end of the spectrum and that this shift was more pronounced the further a star was from the earth.

This discovery had an electrifying effect in the world of science, because according to the recognized rules of physics, the spectra of light beams traveling towards the point of observation tend towards violet while the spectra of the light beams moving away from the point of observation tend towards red. During Hubble's observations, the light from stars was discovered to tend towards red. This meant that they were constantly moving away from us.

Long before, Hubble made another very important discovery: Stars and galaxies moved away not only from us, but also from one another. The only conclusion that could be derived from a universe where everything moves away from everything else is that the universe constantly 'expands'.

To better understand, the universe can be thought of as the surface of a balloon being blown up. Just as the points on the surface of a balloon move apart from each other as the balloon is inflated, so do the objects in space move apart from each other as the universe keeps expanding.

In fact, this had been theoretically discovered even earlier. Albert Einstein, who is considered the greatest scientist of the century, had concluded after the calculations he made in theoretical physics that the universe could not be static.

However, he had laid his discovery to rest simply not to conflict with the widely recognized static universe model of his time. Later on, Einstein was to identify his act as 'the greatest mistake of his career'. Subsequently, it became definite by Hubble's observations that the universe expands.

What importance, then, did the fact that the universe expands have on the existence of the universe? The expansion of the universe implied that if it could travel backwards in time, the universe would prove to have originated from a single point. The calculations showed that this 'single point' that harbored all the matter of the universe should have 'zero volume' and 'infinite density'. The universe had come about by the explosion of this single point with zero volume. This great explosion that marked the beginning of the universe was named the 'Big Bang' and the theory started to be so called.

It has to be stated that 'zero volume' is a theoretical expression used for descriptive purposes. Science can define the concept of 'nothingness', which is beyond the limits of human comprehension, only by expressing it as a point with zero volume'. In truth, 'a point with no volume' means 'nothingness'. The universe has come into being from nothingness. In other words, it was created.

The Big Bang theory showed that in the beginning all the objects in the universe were of one piece and then were parted. This fact, which was revealed by the Big Bang theory was stated in the Quran 14 centuries ago, when people had a very limited knowledge about the universe; Allah says (what means): "Have those who disbelieved not considered that the heavens and the earth were a joined entity, and We separated them and made from water every living thing? Then will they not believe?" [Quran 21:30]

As stated in the verse, everything, even the 'heavens and the earth' that were not yet created, were created with a Big Bang out of a single point, and shaped the present universe by being parted from each other.

When we compare the statements in the verse with the Big Bang theory, we see that they fully agree with each other. However, the Big Bang was introduced as a scientific theory only in the 20th century.

The expansion of the universe is one of the most important pieces of evidence that the universe was created out of nothing. Although this fact was not discovered by science until the 20th century, Allah has informed us of this reality in the Quran (revealed 1,400 years ago) saying (what means): "And the heaven We constructed with strength, and indeed, We are [its] expander." [Quran 51: 47]

ADNAN OKTAR  On February 22, 2017, NASA announced that the Spitzer Space Telescope discovered 7 planets around a star 39 light-years away named TRAPPIST-1. It was claimed that three of these planets in particular have the so-called necessary conditions for life, and that these planets might have been host to the evolutionary process.

FAZALE RANA  Why do I think God exists? In short: The elegance, sophistication, and ingenuity of biochemical systems—and their astonishing similarity to man-made systems—convinces me that God is responsible for life’s origin and design.

While many skeptics readily acknowledge the remarkable designs of biochemical systems, they would disagree with my conclusion about God’s existence. Why? Because for every biochemical system I point to that displays beauty and elegance, they can point to one that seems to be poorly designed. In their view, these substandard designs reflect life’s evolutionary origin. They argue that evolutionary mechanisms kludged together the cell’s chemical systems through a historically contingent process that co-opted preexisting systems, cobbling them together to form new biochemical systems.

According to skeptics, one doesn’t have to look hard to find biochemical systems that seem to have been put together in a haphazard manner, and DNA replication appears to be an example of this. In many respects, DNA replication lies at the heart of the cell’s chemical operations. If designed by a Creator, this biochemical system, above all others, should epitomize intelligent design. Yet the DNA replication process appears to be unwieldy, inefficient, and unduly complex—the type of system evolution would generate by force, not the type of system worthy to be designated the product of the Creator’s handiwork.

Yet new work by Japanese researchers helps explain why DNA replication is the way it is.1 Instead of reflecting the cumbersome product of an unguided evolutionary history, the DNA replication process displays an exquisite molecular logic.

To appreciate the significance of the Japanese study and its implication for the creation/evolution controversy, a short biochemistry primer is in order. For readers who are familiar with DNA’s structure and the DNA replication process, you can skip the next two sections.

DNA

DNA consists of chain-like molecules known as polynucleotides. Two polynucleotide chains align in an antiparallel fashion to form a DNA molecule. (The two strands are arranged parallel to one another with the starting point of one strand in the polynucleotide duplex located next to the ending point of the other strand and vice versa.) The paired polynucleotide chains twist around each other to form the well-known DNA double helix. The cell’s machinery forms polynucleotide chains by linking together four different subunit molecules called nucleotides. The nucleotides used to build DNA chains are adenosine, guanosine, cytidine, and thymidine, famously abbreviated A, G, C, and T, respectively.

The nucleotide molecules that make up the strands of DNA are, in turn, complex molecules consisting of both a phosphate moiety, and a nucleobase (either adenine, guanine, cytosine, or thymine) joined to a 5-carbon sugar (deoxyribose).

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Image 1: Adenosine Monophosphate, a Nucleotide

Repeatedly linking the phosphate group of one nucleotide to the deoxyribose unit of another nucleotide forms the backbone of the DNA strand. The nucleobases extend as side chains from the backbone of the DNA molecule and serve as interaction points when the two DNA strands align and twist to form the double helix.
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Image 2: The DNA Backbone

When the two DNA strands align, the adenosine (A) side chains of one strand always pair with thymidine (T) side chains from the other strand. Likewise, the guanosine (G) side chains from one DNA strand always pair with cytidine (C) side chains from the other strand.

DNA Replication

Biochemists refer to DNA replication as a template-directed, semi-conservative process. By template-directed, biochemists mean that the nucleotide sequences of the “parent” DNA molecule function as a template, directing the assembly of the DNA strands of the two “daughter” molecules. By semi-conservative, biochemists mean that after replication, each daughter DNA molecule contains one newly formed DNA strand and one strand from the parent molecule.

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Image 3: Semi-Conservative DNA Replication

Conceptually, template-directed, semi-conservative DNA replication entails the separation of the parent DNA double-helix into two single strands. By using the base-pairing rules, each strand serves as a template for the cell’s machinery to use when it forms a new DNA strand with a nucleotide sequence complementary to the parent strand. Because each strand of the parent DNA molecule directs the production of a new DNA strand, two daughter molecules result. Each one possesses an original strand from the parent molecule and a newly formed DNA strand produced by a template-directed synthetic process.

DNA replication begins at specific sites along the DNA double helix, called replication origins. The DNA double helix unwinds locally at the origin of replication to produce what biochemists call a replication bubble. The bubble expands in both directions from the origin during the course of DNA replication. Once the individual strands of the DNA double helix unwind and are exposed within the replication bubble, they are available to direct the production of the daughter strand. The site where the DNA double helix continuously unwinds is called the replication fork. Because DNA replication proceeds in both directions away from the origin, there are two replication forks within each bubble.

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Image 4: DNA Replication

DNA replication can only proceed in a single direction, from the top of the DNA strand to the bottom. Because the strands that form the DNA double helix align in an antiparallel fashion with the top of one strand juxtaposed to the bottom of the other strand, only one strand at each replication fork has the proper orientation (bottom-to-top) to direct the assembly of a new strand, in the top-to-bottom direction. For this strand—referred to as the “leading strand”—DNA replication proceeds rapidly and continuously in the direction of the advancing replication fork.

DNA replication can’t proceed along the strand with the top-to-bottom orientation until the replication bubble has expanded enough to expose a sizable stretch of DNA. When this happens, DNA replication moves away from the advancing replication fork. DNA replication can only proceed a short distance for the top-to-bottom oriented strand before the replication process has to stop and wait for more of the parent DNA strand to be exposed. When a sufficient length of the parent DNA template is exposed for a second time, DNA replication can proceed again, but only briefly before it has to stop again and wait for more DNA to be exposed. The process of discontinuous DNA replication takes place repeatedly until the entire strand is replicated. Each time DNA replication starts and stops, a small fragment of DNA is produced. Biochemists refer to these pieces of DNA (that will eventually comprise the daughter strand) as “Okazaki fragments,” named after the biochemist who discovered them. Biochemists call the strand produced discontinuously the “lagging strand,” because DNA replication for this strand lags behind the more rapidly produced leading strand.

One additional point: The leading strand at one replication fork is the lagging strand at the other replication fork, since the replication forks at the two ends of the replication bubble advance in opposite directions.

Before the newly formed daughter strands can be produced, a small RNA primer must be produced. The protein that synthesizes new DNA by reading the parent DNA template strand—DNA polymerase—can’t start production from scratch. It has to be primed. A massive protein complex, called the primosome, which consists of more than 15 different proteins, produces the RNA primer needed by DNA polymerase.

Once primed, DNA polymerase will continuously produce DNA along the leading strand. However, for the lagging strand, DNA polymerase can only generate DNA in spurts to produce Okazaki fragments. Each time DNA polymerase generates an Okazaki fragment, the primosome complex must produce a new RNA primer.

Once DNA replication is completed, the RNA primers are removed from the continuous DNA of the leading strand and the Okazaki fragments that make up the lagging strand. A protein called a 3’–5’ exonuclease removes the RNA primers. A different DNA polymerase fills in the gaps created by the removal of the RNA primers. Finally, a protein called a ligase connects all the Okazaki fragments together to form a continuous piece of DNA out of the lagging strand.

DNA Replication and the Case for Evolution

This cursory description of DNA replication clearly illustrates the complexity of this biochemical operation. (Many details of the process were left out of the discussion.) This description also reveals why biochemists view this process as cumbersome and unwieldy. There is no obvious reason why DNA replication proceeds as a semi-conservative, RNA primer-dependent, unidirectional process involving leading and lagging strands to produce DNA daughter molecules. Because of this uncertainty, skeptics view DNA replication as a chance outcome of a historically contingent process, kludged together from the biochemical leftovers of the RNA world.

If there is one feature of DNA replication that is responsible for the complexity of the process, it is the directionality of DNA replication—from top to bottom. At first glance, it would seem as if the process would be simpler and more elegant if replication could proceed in both directions. Skeptics argue that the fact that it doesn’t reflects the evolutionary origin of the replication process.

Yet work by the team from Sapporo, Japan indicates that there is an exquisite molecular rationale for the directionality of DNA replication.

Why DNA Replication Proceeds in a Single Direction

These researchers recognized an important opportunity to ask why DNA replication proceeds only in a single direction with the discovery of a class of enzymes that add nucleotides to the ends of transfer RNA (tRNA) molecules. (tRNA molecules ferry amino acids to the ribsosome during protein synthesis.) If damaged, tRNA molecules cannot properly carry out their role in protein production. Fortunately, there are repair enzymes that can fix damaged tRNA molecules. One of them is called Thg-1-like protein (TLP).

TLP adds nucleotides to damaged ends of tRNA molecules. But instead of adding the nucleotides top to bottom, the enzyme adds these subunit molecules to the tRNA bottom to top, the opposite direction of DNA replication.

By determining the mechanism employed by TLP during bottom-to-top nucleotide addition, the researchers gained important insight into the constraints of DNA replication. As it turns out, bottom-to-top addition is a much more complex process than the normal top-to-bottom nucleotide addition. Bottom-to-top addition is a cumbersome two-step process that requires an enzyme with two active sites that have to be linked together in a precise way. In contrast, top-to-bottom addition is a simple, one-step reaction that proceeds with a single active site. In other words, DNA replication proceeds in a single direction (top-to-bottom) because it is mechanistically simpler and more efficient.

One could argue that the complexity that arises by the top-to-bottom DNA replication process is a trade-off for a mechanistically simpler nucleotide addition reaction. Still, if DNA replication proceeded in both directions the process would be complex and unwieldy. For example, if replication proceeded in two directions, the cell would require two distinct types of primosomes and DNA polymerases, one set for each direction of DNA replication. Employing two sets of primosomes and DNA polymerases is clearly less efficient than employing a single set of enzymes.

Ironically, if DNA replication could proceed in two directions, there still would be a leading and a lagging strand. Why? Because bottom-to-top replication is a two-step process and would proceed more slowly than the single step of top-to-bottom replication. In other words, the assembly of the DNA strand in a bottom-to-top direction would lag behind the assembly of the DNA strand that traveled in a top-to-bottom direction.

Bidirectional DNA replication would also cause another complication due to a crowding effect. Once the replication bubble opens, both sets of replication enzymes would have to fit into the replication bubble’s constrained space. This molecular overcrowding would further compromise the efficiency of the replication process. Overcrowding is not an issue for unidirectional DNA replication that proceeds in a top-to-bottom direction.

The bottom line: In light of this new insight, it is hard to argue that DNA replication has been cobbled together via a historically contingent pathway. Instead, it is looking more and more like a process ingenuously designed by a Divine Mind.

 

FAZALE RANA  Before joining Reasons to Believe in 1999, I spent seven years working in R&D at a Fortune 500 company, which meant that I spent most of my time in a chemistry laboratory alongside my colleagues trying to develop new technologies with the hope that one day our ideas would become a reality, making their way onto store shelves.

From time to time, my work would be interrupted by an urgent call from one of our manufacturing plants. Inevitably, there was some crisis requiring my expertise as a chemist to troubleshoot. Often, I could solve the plant’s problem over the phone, or by analyzing a few samples sent to my lab. But, occasionally, the crisis necessitated a trip to the plant. These trips weren’t much fun. They were high pressure, stressful situations, because the longer the plant was offline, the more money it cost the company.

But, once the crisis abated, we could breathe easier. And that usually afforded us an opportunity to tour the plant.

It was a thrill to see working assembly lines manufacturing our products. These manufacturing operations were engineering marvels to behold, efficiently producing high-quality products at unimaginable speeds.

The Cell as a Factory

Inside each cell, an ensemble of manufacturing operations exists, more remarkable than any assembly line designed by human engineers. Perhaps one of the most astounding is the biochemical process that produces proteins—the workhorse molecules of life. These large complex molecules work collaboratively to carry out every cellular operation and contribute to the formation of all the structures within the cell.

Subcellular particles called ribosomes produce proteins through an assembly-line-like operation, replete with sophisticated quality control checkpoints. (As discussed in The Cell’s Design, the similarity between the assembly-line production of proteins and human manufacturing operations bolsters the Watchmaker argument for God’s existence.)

Ribosomes

About 23 nanometers in diameter, ribosomes play a central role in protein synthesis by catalyzing (assisting) the chemical reactions that form the bonds between the amino acid subunits of proteins. A human cell may contain up to half a million ribosomes. A typical bacterium possesses about 20,000 of these subcellular structures, comprising one-fourth the total bacterial mass.

Two subunits of different sizes (comprised of proteins and RNA molecules) combine to form a functional ribosome. In organisms like bacteria, the large subunit (LSU) contains 2 ribosomal RNA (rRNA) molecules and about 30 different protein molecules. The small subunit (SSU) consists of a single rRNA molecule and about 20 proteins. In more complex organisms, the LSU is formed by 3 rRNA molecules that combine with around 50 distinct proteins and the SSU consists of a single rRNA molecule and over 30 different proteins. The rRNAs act as scaffolding that organizes the myriad ribosomal proteins. They also catalyze the chain-forming reactions between amino acids.

Ribosomes Make Ribosomes

Before a cell can replicate, ribosomes must manufacture the proteins needed to form more ribosomes—in fact, the cell’s machinery needs to manufacture enough ribosomes to form a full complement of these subcellular complexes. This ensures that both daughter cells have the sufficient number of protein-manufacturing machines to thrive once the cell division process is completed. Because of this constraint, cell replication cannot proceed until a duplicate population of ribosomes is produced.

Is There a Rationale for Ribosome Structure?

Clearly, ribosomes are complex subcellular particles. But, is there any rhyme or reason for their structure? Or are ribosomes the product of a historically contingent evolutionary history?

New work by researchers from Harvard University and Uppsala University in Sweden provides key insight into the compositional make up of ribosomes, and, in doing so, help answer these questions.1

As part of their research efforts, the Harvard and Uppsala University investigators were specifically trying to answer several questions related to the composition of ribosomes, including:

  1. Why are ribosomes made up of so many proteins?
  2. Why are ribosomal proteins nearly the same size?
  3. Why are ribosomal proteins smaller than typical proteins?
  4. Why are ribosomes made up of so few rRNA molecules?
  5. Why are rRNA molecules are so large?
  6. Why do ribosomes employ rRNA as the catalyst to form bonds between amino acids, instead of proteins which are much more efficient as enzymes?

Ribosome Composition Is Optimal for Efficient Production of Ribosomes

Using mathematical modeling, the Harvard and Uppsala University investigators discovered that if ribosomal proteins were larger, or if these biomolecules were variable in size, ribosome production would be slow and inefficient. Building ribosomes with smaller, uniform-size proteins represents the faster way to duplicate the ribosome population, permitting the cell replication to proceed in a timely manner.

These researchers also learned that if the ribosomal proteins were any shorter, inefficient ribosome production also results. This inefficiency stems from biochemical events needed to initiate protein production. If proteins are too short, then the initiation events take longer than the elongation processes that build the protein chains.

The bottom line: The mathematical modeling work by the Harvard and Uppsala University research team indicates that the sizes of ribosomal proteins are optimal to ensure the most rapid and efficient production of ribosomes. The mathematical modeling also determined that the optimal number of ribosomal proteins is between 50 to 80—the number of ribosomal proteins found in nature.

Ribosome Composition Is Optimal to Produce a Varied Population of Ribosomes

The insights of this work have bearing on the recent discovery that within cells a heterogeneous population of ribosomes exists, not a homogeneous one as biochemists have long thought.2 Instead of every ribosome in the cell being identical, capable of producing each and every protein the cell needs, a diverse ensemble of distinct ribosomes exists in the cell. Each type of ribosome manufactures characteristically distinct types of proteins. Typically, ribosomes produce proteins that work in conjunction to carry out related cellular functions. The heterogeneous makeup of ribosomes contributes to the overall efficiency of protein production, and also provides an important means to regulate protein synthesis. It wouldn’t make sense to use an assembly line to make both consumer products, such as antiperspirant sticks, and automobiles. In the same manner, it doesn’t make sense to use the same ribosomes to make the myriad proteins, performing different functions for the cell.

Because ribosomes consist of a large number of small proteins, the cell can efficiently produce heterogeneous populations of ribosomes by assembling a ribosomal core and then including and excluding specific ribosomal proteins to generate a diverse population of ribosomes.3 In other words, the protein composition of ribosomes is optimized to efficiently replicate a diverse population of these subcellular particles.

The Case for Creation

The ingenuity of biochemical systems was one of the features of the cell’s chemistry that most impressed me as a graduate student (and moved me toward the recognition that there was a Creator). And the latest work by researchers on ribosome composition from Harvard and Uppsala Universities provides another illustration of the clever way that biochemical systems are constructed. The composition of these subcellular structures doesn’t appear to be haphazard—a frozen accident of a historically contingent evolutionary process—but instead is undergirded by an elegant molecular rationale, consistent with the work of a mind.

The case for intelligent design gains reinforcement from the optimal composition of ribosomal proteins. Quite often, designs produced by human beings have been optimized, making this property a telltale signature for intelligent design. In fact, optimality is most often associated with superior designs.

As I pointed out in The Cell’s Design, ribosomes are chicken-and-egg systems. Because ribosomes are composed of proteins, proteins are needed to make proteins. As with ingenuity and optimality, this property also evinces for the work of intelligent agency. Building a system that displays this unusual type of interdependency requires, and hence, reflects the work of a mind.

On the other hand, the chicken-and-egg nature of ribosome biosynthesis serves as a potent challenge to evolutionary explanations for the origin of life.

The Challenge to Evolution

Because ribosomes are needed to make the proteins needed to make ribosomes, it becomes difficult to envision how this type of chicken-and-egg system could emerge via evolutionary processes. Protein synthesis would have to function optimally at the onset. If it did not, it would lead to a cycle of auto-destruction for the cell.

Ribosomes couldn’t begin as crudely operating protein-manufacturing machines that gradually increased in efficiency—evolving step-by-step—toward the optimal systems, characteristic of contemporary biochemistry. If error-prone, ribosomes will produce defective proteins—including ribosomal proteins. In turn, defective ribosomal proteins will form ribosomes even more prone to error, setting up the auto-destruct cycle. And in any evolutionary scheme, the first ribosomes would have been error-prone.

The compositional requirement that ribosomal proteins be of the just-right size and uniform in length only exacerbates this chicken-and-egg problem. Even if ribosomes form functional, intact proteins, if these proteins aren’t the correct number, size, or uniformity then ribosomes couldn’t be replicated fast enough to support cellular reproduction.

In short, the latest insights in the protein composition of ribosomes provides compelling reasons to think that life must stem from a Creator’s handiwork.

 

 

A Stop to the Evolution Journey Of Birds

Origin of Life

FAZALE RANA  Is the biochemical activity measured for the human genome merely biochemical noise or is it productive for the cell? The answer to this question doesn’t just have scientific implications. It impacts questions surrounding humanity’s origin. Did we arise through evolutionary processes or are we the product of a Creator’s handiwork?


 

The time my wife Amy and I spent in graduate school studying biochemistry were some of the best days of our lives. But it wasn’t all fun and games. For the most part, we spent long days and nights working in the lab.

But we weren’t alone. Most of the graduate students in the chemistry department at Ohio University kept the same hours we did, with all-nighters broken up around midnight by “Dew n’ Donut” runs to the local 7-Eleven. Even though everybody worked hard, some people were just more productive than others. I soon came to realize that activity and productivity were two entirely different things. Some of the busiest people I knew in graduate school rarely accomplished anything.

This same dichotomy lies at the heart of an important scientific debate taking place about the meaning of the ENCODE project results. This controversy centers around the question: Is the biochemical activity measured for the human genome merely biochemical noise or is it productive for the cell? Or to phrase the question the way a biochemist would: Is biochemical activity associated with the human genome the same thing as biochemical function?

The answer to this question doesn’t just have scientific implications. It impacts questions surrounding humanity’s origin. Did we arise through evolutionary processes or are we the product of a Creator’s handiwork?

The ENCODE Project

The ENCODE project—a program carried out by a consortium of scientists with the goal of identifying the functional DNA sequence elements in the human genome—reported phase II results in the fall of 2012. To the surprise of many, the ENCODE project reported that around 80% of the human genome displays biochemical activity, and hence function, with the expectation that this percentage should increase with phase III of the project.

If valid, the ENCODE results force a radical revision of the way scientists view the human genome. Instead of a wasteland littered with junk DNA sequences (as the evolutionary paradigm predicts), the human genome (and the genomes of other organisms) is packed with functional elements (as expected if a Creator brought human beings into existence).

Within hours of the publication of the phase II results, evolutionary biologists condemned the ENCODE results, citing technical issues with the way the study was designed and the way the results were interpreted.

Is Biochemical Activity the Same Thing As Function?

One of the technical complaints relates to how the ENCODE consortium determined biochemical function. Critics argue that ENCODE scientists conflated biochemical activity with function. For example, the ENCODE Project determined that about 60% of the human genome is transcribed to produceRNA. ENCODE skeptics argue that most of these transcripts lack function. Evolutionary biologist Dan Graur has asserted that “some studies even indicate that 90% of transcripts generated by RNA polymerase II may represent transcriptional noise.”In other words, the biochemical activity measured by the ENCODE project can be likened to busy but nonproductive graduate students who hustle and bustle about the lab but fail to get anything done.

When I first learned how many evolutionary biologists interpreted the ENCODE results I was skeptical. As a biochemist, I am well aware that living systems could not tolerate such high levels of transcriptional noise.

Transcription is an energy- and resource-intensive process. Therefore, it would be untenable to believe that most transcripts are mere biochemical noise. Such a view ignores cellular energetics. Transcribing 60% of the genome when most of the transcripts serve no useful function would routinely waste a significant amount of the organism’s energy and material stores. If such an inefficient practice existed, surely natural selection would eliminate it and streamline transcription to produce transcripts that contribute to the organism’s fitness.

Most RNA Transcripts Are Functional

Recent work supports my intuition as a biochemist. Genomics scientists are quickly realizing that most of the RNA molecule transcribed from the human genome serve critical functional roles.

For example, a recently published report from the Second Aegean International Conference on the Long and the Short of Non-Coding RNAs (held in Greece between June 9–14, 2017) highlights this growing consensus. Based on the papers presented at the conference, the authors of the report conclude, “Non-coding RNAs . . . are not simply transcriptional by-products, or splicing artefacts, but comprise a diverse population of actively synthesized and regulated RNA transcripts. These transcripts can—and do—function within the contexts of cellular homeostasis and human pathogenesis.”2

Shortly before this conference was held, a consortium of scientists from the RIKEN Center for Life Science Technologies in Japan published an atlas of long non-coding RNAs transcribed from the human genome. (Long non-coding RNAs are a subset of RNA transcripts produced from the human genome.) They identified nearly 28,000 distinct long non-coding RNA transcripts and determined that nearly 19,200 of these play some functional role, with the possibility that this number may increase as they and other scientific teams continue to study long non-coding RNAs.3 One of the researchers involved in this project acknowledges that “There is strong debate in the scientific community on whether the thousands of long non-coding RNAs generated from our genomes are functional or simply byproducts of a noisy transcriptional machinery . . . we find compelling evidence that the majority of these long non-coding RNAs appear to be functional.”4

Copied by Design

Based on these results, it becomes increasingly difficult for ENCODE skeptics to dismiss the findings of the ENCODE project. Independent studies affirm the findings of the ENCODE consortium—namely, that a vast proportion of the human genome is functional.

We have come a long way from the early days of the human genome project. When completed in 2003, many scientists at that time estimated that around 95% of the human genome consisted of junk DNA. And in doing so, they seemingly provided compelling evidence that humans must be the product of an evolutionary history.

But, here we are, nearly 15 years later. And the more we learn about the structure and function of genomes, the more elegant and sophisticated they appear to be. And the more reasons we have to think that the human genome is the handiwork of our Creator.

Endnotes

  1. Dan Graur et al., “On the Immortality of Television Sets: ‘Function’ in the Human Genome According to the Evolution-Free Gospel of ENCODE,” Genome Biology and Evolution5 (March 1, 2013): 578–90, doi:10.1093/gbe/evt028.
  2. Jun-An Chen and Simon Conn, “Canonical mRNA is the Exception, Rather than the Rule,” Genome Biology 18 (July 7, 2017): 133, doi:10.1186/s13059-017-1268-1.
  3. Chung-Chau Hon et al., “An Atlas of Human Long Non-Coding RNAs with Accurate 5′ Ends,” Nature 543 (March 9, 2017): 199–204, doi:10.1038/nature21374.
  4. RIKEN, “Improved Gene Expression Atlas Shows that Many Human Long Non-Coding RNAs May Actually Be Functional,” ScienceDaily, March 1, 2017, www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/03/170301132018.htm.

A Stop to the Evolution Journey Of Birds

How Fossils Refute Darwinism

ADNAN OKTAR In 2014, a Burmese Amber (tree resin) fossil dating back 99 million years was discovered in Myanmar. The fossil was exhibited in museums in 2017. The fossil, which was initially thought to be a saurian by many, contained the remains of a newly-hatched bird. As a result of studies, it was stated that the fossil belonged to the Cretaceous period (145 to 66 million years ago)


 

As a result of studies carried out by researchers from China, the US and Canada, it was stated that the fossil belonged to the Cretaceous period (145 to 66 million years ago); the bird's neck, skull, clawed foot and a partial wing were preserved in the amber. However, the scientists stated that the tissues in the fossil are damaged and there are no usable DNA samples.

enantiornithine hindlimb

This bird fossil, called "Belone", is thought to belong to an extinct major group of birds who had teeth in their beaks and clawed fingers on their wings and belonged to the Cretaceous period in which the dinosaurs existed. This extinct bird species, which is also known as enantiornithes (toothed birds), has only three characteristics that distinguish them from today's birds. These characteristics include that they had teeth in their breaks, clawed fingers on their wings and different type of wing connection. Apart from these, they show the same characteristics with today's birds.

Evolutionists try to present some bird species that are similar to the aforementioned fossil, as living beings with "underdeveloped flying skills" by asserting that they had teeth in their beaks and clawed fingers on their wings. They introduce these creatures as a so-called "intermediate form" between dinosaurs and modern birds. Nonetheless, the toothed and clawed birds which lived in the past had remarkable flying skills. The presence of teeth and claws doesn't make that bird an intermediate form. The toothed birds are extinct today, but babies of Tauraco corythaix and Opisthocomus hoatzin species, which exist today, also have claws on their wings. These birds are excellent flyers.

amber bird_hatchling

If you pay attention, Belone is a newly-hatched bird and has claws on its wings. Today's Tauraco corythaix and Opisthocomus hoatzin hatchlings have claws on their wings too. The hatchling, still incapable of proper flight, can hide from predators by climbing among dense tree branches thanks to these claws. Hence, the reason for the inability of the aforementioned living being to fly is not because it is an intermediate form as claimed by evolutionists, but because it is a baby. The living being's ability o fly develops within three or four weeks. Now that the hatchling can fly, it does not need the claws. After this stage, as the Tauraco corythaix and Opisthocomus hoatzin approach adulthood, the claws would fall off their wings after a while, so these claws are no longer found in adults. This rejects the unfounded claims of the evolutionists and shows a miracle in creation. The claws are vital when young, but there is no need for them afterwards. Although the living being has the same genetics both in babyhood and adulthood, the genetic information is used in a great way at the right time and in the appropriate way.

bird in_amber

It is most likely that the claws on the hatchling Belone were the type that fall off in time. The existence of Tauraco corythaix and Opisthocomus hoatzin proves this to us. More importantly, the presence of claws in the wings is presented as a reason for introducing the living being as an "evolving creature". The presence of claws in the wings of a creature does not prove that the creature is incapable of flight. This is nothing but mere speculation that evolutionists, who are used to demagogy, have used for years instead of science.

Before Belone, there was little information about birds that existed in the Cretaceous period, so the evolutionists – as a requisite of their imagination and their ideology- made all their comments on the subjects about which there is no evidence, in favor of the so-called evolution. They have introduced birds with different anatomical characteristics, such as Archeopteryx, as so-called "transitional forms". The claims about this matter came to an end with the successive discovery of Archeopteryx fossils, and especially with the discovery of a fossil preserved along with soft tissues inside an amber. All the anatomical features of Archeopteryx scientifically documented that it is a perfect flying bird. As you might recall, Archeopteryx is a clawed bird as well.

The feather structure of "Belone" is also frustrating for evolutionists. Because complex structures such as feathers and wings should exhibit a gradual development according to evolutionist logic; evolutionists claim that the so-called primitive birds should not be fully capable of flight, and that there should be a number of impediments in their wing and feather structures that restrict proper flight. Despite the fact that Belone is a newly hatched bird, it has primary and secondary flight feathers asymmetrically arranged with features providing excellent aerodynamics, as observed in today's birds.  In other words, the anatomical structure providing the aerodynamic characteristics of the feathers has not undergone any changes for 100 million years. This is one of the most significant blows dealt to the theory of evolution.

Although Belone is a newly hatched bird, it still has feathers suitable for flight. Today's birds usually do not have feathers suitable for flight when they hatch. They need the care of their parents for a certain period of time. The flight feathers begin to form after a while. This is not because they are primitive creatures, but because they are babies. This type of feature is very similar to the Australian brush-turkey (Australian megapodes) which exists today. It has been observed that Belone has excellent and intact feather structure that will allow it to fly just like the Australian brush-turkey hatchlings. Australian brush-turkey hatchlings’ unique characteristic that separates them from other modern birds is that they do not need special care from the parents after they hatch; that is, the hatchlings come out of their eggs with all the characteristics that will enable it to survive. Again, unlike other birds, Australian brush-turkey eggs are placed not on the trees but on nests built in the soil by the father turkey and kept at a constant 33°C. The newly-hatched baby must immediately climb the trees and acquire the ability to fly to be protected from danger. For this reason, it has feathers that enable it to fly from the first day. The fact that the feathers of Belone are also suitable for flying shows that it does not need much parental care after it hatches. The fact that a baby bird hatches with the characteristics enabling it to survive on its own is another miracle of Creation and refutes the claims of evolution.

Briefly, with its flying ability and anatomical structure, "Belone" has the characteristics of an excellent bird. It has no half, missing, dysfunctional organ or structure. Furthermore, it shows similar anatomic characteristics with Tauraco corythaix, Opisthocomus hoatzin and Australian brush-turkeys which exists today.

opisthocomus hoazin

The discovery of the fossil of a living being, which existed 99 million years ago with the characteristics of a fully developed bird, clearly shows that birds existed during this period and did not evolve from flying dinosaurs.

Adnan Oktar's piece in News Rescue (USA):

http://newsrescue.com/99-million-year-old-hatchling-fossil-ended-evolution-journey-birds/#axzz4vbMZguL3

ADNAN OKTAR The theory of evolution claims that a particular species transforms into a brand-new species with very small changes. However, to prove such a claim it is necessary to find proof of these transitional species with the aforementioned changes and to present them as scientific evidence.


The alleged transitional species must originate from an imaginary ancestor species and possess new developing organs, systems or limbs. However, such imaginary transformations, which involve trial and error and are claimed to have lasted for millions of years, will result in an unsuccessful transitional species with half-limbs or missing organs. It is interesting that THERE IS NOT EVEN A SINGLE TRANSITIONAL FORM in the fossil record that would bear witness to such changes. Contrary to the expectations of evolutionists, the fossil record is instead full of species with intact and complete organs and systems. This shows us that the millions of species we have witnessed so far all had the same characteristics 100 million years ago.

There is NO CHAOS in the fossil records

It can be expected that a world governed by coincidences would bring along chaos as well. In such an imaginary system, it is impossible for species to have symmetry or aesthetics. Even the existence of life itself would be impossible in a world prevailed by coincidences. Mutations, claimed to be the so-called mechanism of evolution, lead to distortions and deficiencies in DNA, and as a result, distorted and irregular structures, defects in organs and systems occur. According to the claim of evolution, we should frequently encounter fossil samples of different species that have undergone mutation, and therefore have not survived and went extinct. However, there is not even a single sample of it.

transition lie

This fact, posing a problem for the evolutionists, was first admitted by Charles Darwin:

“Why if species have descended from other species by insensibly fine gradations, do we not everywhere see INNUMERABLE transitional forms? Why is not all nature in CONFUSION instead of the species being, as we see them, WELL DEFINED?” (Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species, p.108)

Despite being the founder of the theory, Darwin admitted that the fossils, witnessing the history of life, were not confusing and that the fossils were perfectly in order. Strange- looking transitional species have never existed throughout history. The very moment a species appeared in the fossil record, they had intact organs and symmetrical limbs.

There is no such thing as “Innumerable Transitional Species”

We always find fossil samples of complete and intact species in the fossil record. Some of them belong to species that emerged with perfect limbs and organs, and then went extinct, and some belong to existent species that emerged millions of years ago with their perfect and present appearance. As claimed by evolutionists, the intermediate forms, which developed intermediate features that proved to be disadvantageous and caused the extinction of that species, certainly do not exist. The fossil record offers NOT A SINGLE FOSSIL OF AN INTERMEDIATE FORM.

According to the claim of evolution, the number of imaginary transitional species is supposed to be geometric multiples of the number of species known today. The so-called evolutionary tree must be full of unsuccessful species and must have innumerable subsections that have ceased to exist. This number could have been expressed in the trillions. Charles Darwin always emphasized that the amount of transitional species, which he hoped for but never found its existence, is INNUMERABLE:

INNUMERABLE transitional forms must have existed, why we not find them embedded in COUNTLESS NUMBERS IN THE CRUST OF THE EARTH?.. Why then is not EVERY GEOLOGICAL FORMATION AND EVERY STRATUM full of such intermediate links?" (Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species, p.172-280)

As Darwin pointed out, if the claim of evolution were true, almost every geological stratum would be full of such unsuccessful attempts, namely strange-looking transitional forms. These imaginary transitional life forms, trillions of which should be found in every fossil layer thus far excavated, should have been encountered by now; however, the situation is exactly the opposite. Fossils refute evolution by not showing a single transitional form.

The fact that species have remained unchanged

Paleontology, the study of fossils, reveals that species have not changed and have always remained stable throughout the time they remained on earth. The famous evolutionist paleontologist Niles Eldredge also stated that this is an undeniable fact:

Stasis is now abundantly well documented as the preeminent paleontological pattern in the evolutionary history of species.(Niles Eldredge, Reinventing Darwin, 1995, p. 77 - http://bevets.com/equotese.htm)

It is an obvious fact that species emerged on the earth fully developed and have remained unchanged throughout their existence. This is a situation that can never be contradicted by any paleontologist and is always confessed. One of the leading evolutionists, American paleontologist and science historian Stephen Jay Gould, wrote the following about these two most prominent features of the fossil record:

The history of most fossil species includes two features particularly inconsistent with gradualism:

(1) Stasis. Most species exhibit no directional change during their tenure on earth. They appear in the fossil record looking much the same as when they disappear; morphological change is usually limited and directionless.

(2) Sudden appearance. In any local area, a species does not arise gradually by the steady transformation of its ancestors; it appears all at once and 'fully formed.' (S. J. Gould, “Evolution’s Erratic Pace", Natural History, vol. 86, May 1977)

Gould again continues his confessions in an article in the Natural Historymagazine as follows:

Statis, or non-change of most fossil species during their lengthy geological lifespans, was tacitly acknowledged by all paleontologists, but almost never studied explicitly... The overwhelming prevalence of stasis became an embarrassing feature of the fossil record, but left as a manifestation of nothing (that is, non-evolution). (S.J. Gould, "Cordelia's Dilemma," Natural History, 1993, p. 15)

Atlas of Creation and Fossils Say 'We Have Not Changed'

As is seen, comparing fossils with their living counterparts and showing that they have not undergone any change is nothing but disclosing a well-known fact to the public. This fact, which has always been withheld from the public, reached and was spread to the public at large through the Atlas of Creation, the magnum opus of the author Adnan Oktar, writing under the pen name Harun Yahya. Paleontology has shown that species do not emerge slowly in millions of years as claimed, but that they emerge miraculously, in their perfect forms. With the work of Mr. Adnan Oktar, the findings and fossils that have been hidden from the public for so many years have been revealed at last and the secrets of the evolutionists have been shown for all the world to see.

Although this extraordinary piece of work exhibits only about 2,000 fossils in detailed photographs, the number of classified fossils that are stored in repositories in universities or in museums with date tags, is about 700 million. The fact that some evolutionists, who feel upset about these facts write stories about merely three or four fossils out of the thousands mentioned in the Atlasand try to make unfair criticisms shows just how desperate they actually are. These criticisms are far from being scientific and typically do not go beyond ill-advised sarcasm as obviously, in the scientific literature, there are thousands of other examples of the fossils in question.

Seeking Imaginary Ancestors through Mathematics

Evolutionists claim that humans share a common ancestor with chimpanzees. Speculations go on and on, one day claiming that chimpanzees are closer to humans, and the next the bonobos. While there is no evidence of any transformation, according to what exactly can Darwinists establish a relationship between those two? At this point, evolutionists produce statistical formula that they invented from scratch and which have no scientific validity.

The deception here is based on the comparison of some selected base-pairs of specific genes of the two species. Here it should not be assumed that all the codes of the two species' genomes have been compared one by one. This fact is better understood when we examine this trick used to create the imaginary family tree:

When studies of genetic similarity between man and apes are conducted, only certain genes are compared. For example, while drawing the family tree of living primates, 34,927 base pairs of 54 genes were considered. There are about 25,000 genes in the human body and not all of them are compared here.

Evolutionists initially claimed that there is a 1% difference between the chimpanzee and the human genome, but later this difference was generally accepted as 4%; this rate corresponds to about 35 million nucleotides. Evolutionists are in search of an imaginary mechanism in which this difference is made up. Therefore, they suggest mutations that altered the DNA, added or subtracted codes, all of which would completely harm the organism. They claim that history worked backwards like this and that mutations worked regularly, and had only beneficial effects all the time- which in fact is impossible - and thus they make fake calculations about the dates when the two species may have split. There is no fossil of the imaginary common ancestor, and there are no intermediate species either; nevertheless, evolutionists present calculations, which do not have scientific validity, as if they are true under the rubric of "prediction" to the public. The imaginary data, entered into a computer on the basis of this claim, is executed under the name of the Bayes formula and the lie that they can reach out to their imaginary common ancestor that existed some five to seven million years ago as a result of the calculations made through this imaginary data, is put forth.

The Bayesian Approach in Statistics and Scientific Errors Arisen from Presupposition

The Bayesian formula used in some statistical calculations enables a retrospective analysis of a particular claim. The Bayesian formula is used to calculate conditional probabilities. So if a person claims that 'two species were derived from a common ancestor', the formula works to verify this fake hypothesis and calculates how many millions of years must elapse to make up the 35 million nucleotide difference. In reality, however, the 35 million nucleotide difference has never been made up, but the formula provides a result because the claim is entered in this way. Therefore, the Bayesian approach is regarded as a scale of a person’s belief for any fact rather than physical evidence.

As we can see, the gaps in the genes are closed in the minds through computer formulas, and the history of life is arbitrarily written. It is evident that such studies, carried out through the postulate of 'evolution exists', have no scientific aspect and completely serve ideological purposes. This mentality, which is far from being able to explain how even a single gene, encoded with information, emerged by itself, uses genetics as a cover.

Paleontology, histology, biochemistry and all other branches of science reveal that life is so complex that it is not possible for it to have come about by pure chance. All species, a single cell - and even a single protein belonging to these species - constitute indisputable proof for the infinite knowledge and power of God.

Adnan Oktar's piece in News Rescue (USA):

http://newsrescue.com/transitional-forms-richard-dawkins-darwinists-dream/#axzz4uvROXrAH

ADNAN OKTAR  One of the classical tactics of Darwinists is to bring old fossils back to the agenda and to make up new stories about the same fossil. This is because evolutionists do not want to admit their defeat, yet there is nothing left in their hands to put forth. The most recent example is the news reports coming through media organizations.


The most recent example is the news reports coming through media organizations such as National Geographic and the Washington Post regarding the fossils known as Homo Naledi. Although new claims and attempts are being made about the fossil in question almost every year since 2013, all of these efforts have been in vain.

As it could be remembered, about 1,500 bone fragments were found inside a 1,450- meter deep cave in South Africa in 2013, which are claimed to belong to 15 separate individuals. The information initially disclosed to the public was that the skull volume of these individuals was the size of an orange and that their finger bones were curved; it was thus claimed that the fossils showed "the characteristics of an ape". Actually, there was no proper skull;, four worn out parietal pieces were placed in way that they were suspended in the air without touching each other. Despite this, the claims continued that the creature had a brain weighing some 500 grams and a cranial capacity about the size of an orange.

homo naledi_scenario

We have documented in our previous articles that the news reports regarding this fossil do not reflect the truth and that the prejudiced evolutionist comments were made without fully determining the age and characteristics of the fossils. You can read our responses - given in 2015 and 2016 - in two separate articles on the fact that the so-called evolutionary gradation cannot be made according to the volume of the skull.

(http://harunyahya.com/en/NetCevap/209368/The-Evolutionist-Scenario-over-“Homo-naledi”-Has-Come-to-Nothing and http://harunyahya.com/en/NetCevap/241668/Darwinist-Tales-Are-Repeated-on-CNN-Homo-Naledi) However, since  speculative news continues to be published in 2017 regarding the Homo Naledi fossils, it will be useful to bring the issue back to the agenda and to decipher the Darwinists' schemes:

Homo naledi doesn't belong to 2.5 million-year-old species, but to a 250,000 -year-old species

The Homo Naledi fossils were first presented to the public as 2.5 million-years-old when first discovered. Moreover, the gradation was made to fit this scenario of evolution according to this age, and imaginary evolutionary trees of life were thus drawn up. It was so exaggerated that it was alleged that the creature was the so-called "missing link" that existed between Australopithecus and H. erectus. In many media outlets, these claims were presented to the public as if they were scientific. However, as a result of the latest age determination measures it was understood that H. Naledi fossils were between 236,000 and 335,000  years-old. This result shocked evolutionist circles and it was once again understood that the scenario of an intermediate form on Naledi's age was simply  a fictional story, far from being scientific. These are important in showing that it is necessary to adopt a suspicious approach to all so-calledevolutionary grading carried out by the evolutionists through anatomical measurements such as skull volume.

According to evolutionary scenarios before 2017, H. Naledi was presented as an intermediate form in the so-called evolutionary gradation of mankind. However, it became clear that H. Naledi, with its 250,000 year-old age as verified by the latest studies, existed almost in the same period with a human species which is estimated to date back about 200,000 years ago. This is important in demonstrating how wild the evolutionists’ imagination gets when there is no scientific evidence.

 

Age determination methods are far from providing exact results

Today, two main methods are used for age determination. One of these is the comparison method based on the idea that the fossils, lying in the same stratum, existed in the same period, which is determined through conducting an age determination of various strata. The second is a radioactive dating method based on the decomposition of radioactive atoms, such as carbon and uranium, found in the collagen tissue samples of fossil remains. Both methods have an intrinsic margin of error.

The age determination of strata is only applicable for volcanic and sedimentary rocks. Even if the age determination of the strata is carried out, one cannot be certain whether the strata changed place after the fossil formation. In places such as caves, where stratification is limited or in places washed by rivers, the margin of error in information provided by the strata increases.

Likewise, the methods based on radioactive decomposition are far from providing precise information. The radioactive method should be a "closed system" in order to be used in age determination. The closed system is conducted assuming that the transfer of radioactive material is stopped after the fossil remains are buried in the soil and there is no subsequent exchange of new material. The "open system", in which the material exchange continues, won't be used for age determination as the amount of decomposition will not be accurate. However, since there is no method that can detect whether a fossil is exposed to a closed or open system, no definitive conclusion can be reached to state that “the fossil was not exposed to an open system.”

Another limiting case, questioning the reliability of age determination methods, is that samples taken from different regions of the same fossil can give different ages. The aforementioned open system exposure that causes different effects in different tissues, is shown as the reason of this.

As a matter of fact, the age determination range estimated for the Naledi fossils offers an extended period of time, as much as 100,000 years. This is an indication of the fact that the method is not entirely reliable. In spite of such a wide range regarding the dating of the fossil, it is not certain that Naledi is younger or older than calculated.

Comments made without any knowledge of DNA are unscientific

All of the comments based on the anatomical features on  ancient fossils, as in the case of Naledi, are speculative. The interspecies and intraspecies phenotypic differences only allow interpretations concerning which species the discovered fossil belongs to be based on evolutionist belief rather than being scientific. As a matter of fact, history is full of pseudo-scientific misconceptions and frauds based on topographic features.

Definitively proving which species a fossil belongs to is only possible with the knowledge of the DNA sequence of the concerned fossil. But since the DNA cannot remain intact for many years due to its structure, it is not possible to obtain DNA sequences in fossils. DNA studies, conducted by evolutionist circles on fossils from time to time, cannot give definitive results because these studies are based on statistical calculations and the DNA can be mixed with other species' DNA or degenerate and decompose. The comments made without the knowledge of DNA are bound to be far from being scientific.

A new scenario is written for Naledi after our knowledge regarding its age is corrected

After the discovering that H. Naledi, which was presented as a 2.5 million-year-old so-called intermediate form, was only about 250,000 years old, the whole evolutionist scenario collapsed. However, the Darwinists would not rest. The intermediate form claim is revised; another scenario is put forward. This time, they claimed that Homo Naledi, having lived with Homo sapiens 250,000 years ago, was a so-called "hominid" that came into existence 2 million years ago and remained unchanged until 250,000 years ago.

Just as the first scenario was groundlessly put forward, this scenario is not based on any scientific basis either. There is no fossil of a H. Naledi which existed 2 million years ago. The only thing that exists is the boundless and non-scientific imagination of evolutionists.

The effort to associate an ape to human is in vain.

Only based on its brain size, H. Naledi was assumed to have lived 2.5 million years ago. Since humans suddenly appeared in the fossil records, there should have been intermediate forms according to the so-called evolution scenario. Darwinists, who considered H. Naledi open to speculation, tried to use H. Naledi for this purpose, but this lasted but a short time. When Naledi’s real age was discovered, these claims became invalid.

It is understood from the obtained fossil structures that H. Naledi is an ape species with a small brain volume and curved phalanges. Naledi existed in the same period with humans. In this case, Darwinist claims that H. Naledi was the “ancestor of humans”, became meaningless. Moreover, even if Naledi had existed 2.5 million years ago, this would not place it in the intermediate form category  because Naledi was a fully developed living being with all its organs and functions. As is, it has nothing to serve the purposes of evolutionists.

Infinite number of scenarios can be produced when there is no need for scientific evidence. However they would have no importance as delusions can never cover the truth.  Having existed in one stage of history and gone extinct, H. Naledi is an ape species and just like every other life form was created by God.

References:

  1. http://harunyahya.com/en/NetCevap/241668/Darwinist-Tales-Are-Repeated-on-CNN-Homo-Naledi
  2. http://harunyahya.com/en/NetCevap/209368/The-Evolutionist-Scenario-over-“Homo-naledi”-Has-Come-to-Nothing
  3. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2017/05/09/humanitys-strange-new-cousin-is-shockingly-young-and-shaking-up-our-family-tree/?utm_term=.e492420cbe60
  4. https://elifesciences.org/articles/09561#fig6
  5. https://elifesciences.org/articles/09560
  6. https://www.nature.com/scitable/knowledge/library/dating-rocks-and-fossils-using-geologic-methods-107924044

ADNAN OKTAR A mighty waterfall tumbling down from on high, the boundless oceans and the glorious, stunning mountains are all matchless works of God. The stars, clouds, birds and fish are all His miracles. 

            Most people are in no doubt that a green forest that blossoms once again, grows and flourishes in the spring is one of the beautiful and glorious works of God.
  
Some people, however, regard skyscrapers, airplanes, laboratories and computers rather differently. The fact that these are made and built by human beings deceives them. They imagine that technology, civilization, scientific and technical progress are independent of God (God forbid) and forget that the human beings who are instrumental in their coming into existence are also created by Him. They fail to think that God, Who has made clouds the cause of rain and the Sun the cause of light, has also made man the cause of technology and civilization. They make the error of thinking that human beings have a power independent of God (God forbid) and that human beings invented the Internet, that human beings cause planes to fly, that human beings invented the tea spoon or biro, that human beings build space craft and that human beings discovered the forces responsible for keeping planes aloft. They imagine that plasma TVs, CD players, carpets, lampshades, cars and the products of advanced technology all appeared as the result of human intelligence and ability.
 
They make a terrible error in not regarding these as the artistry of God, and forget that He created them out of His mercy.
  
The fact is, however, that all these things, just like the seas, trees, flowers, fruits, the Sun and the boundless mountains, are all works of God. God in His mercy makes human beings the cause of all these things listed above. God has given human beings the intelligence and ability for this. Our Lord inspired them to discover these things. But it is certain that God has the power to have created them with no direct cause.
  
And everything we see is in fact CREATED “SPECIALLY FOR US” AND “INDEPENDENT OF NATURAL CAUSES” as God’s sublime artistry.
 
In order to understand this, we need to know that the matter we see and touch is an image created in our brains, that it is specially created for us, specially and moment by moment, and that we can never have direct experience of the originals on the outside.

ADNAN OKTAR A miracle is created every day, every moment in the human brain.


 Although only electrical signals reach the brain, and although the interior of the brain is pitch black and although this region is only a few square centimeters in size, all the mountains, seas, fields, the sky, endless wastes, houses, televisions, people, trees and in short everything we see are all in the brain. Everything there is colored. But there is no color in the brain. Everything there is light and bright, but there is no light in the brain, nor even outside it. Everything there is noisy and accompanied by sound, but the interior of the brain is completely silent. There is a depth to everything there; the stars seem very far away, while a pencil we hold in our hand seems very close. But in fact everything is on the same plane in our brains and at the same distance. The Sun seems to be thousands of kilometers away. But it is actually right next to us, inside our brains. The reason why the Sun exists in our brains is simply and solely electrical signals. A heavenly body we know to be thousands of kilometers across is actually created in a space of just a few square centimeters. And, to remind ourselves, it exists solely as an electrical signal, that we cannot hold in our hands nor even really know exists.

For that reason, the world we see is not the original of matter. We can never have direct experience of the original of matter on the outside. Our world is limited to what we are shown on the screens in our brains. Apart from that, we have no guarantee whether entities really exist or not, just as we have no guarantee whether the world created for us is the same as the real world on the outside.

The world we see is the world that Allah transmits to our souls. There is no matter in that world; no hardness, softness, scent or color. There are only electrical signals. Allah makes electrical signals the causes of the bright and colorful world He shows our souls. And it is the soul He created for human beings that perceives and interprets these images, rejoices, grieves, doubts, feels joy and longing, remembers, loves and feels excitement in that world.

ADNAN OKTAR Our life is like a movie and we can only see every frame of that motion picture when the designated time comes. That storyboard is delineated with millions of instances, which we will experience from the moment of our birth to our last breath. 


 Every detail is captured on that movie, and what we should never forget is that we will not ever be able to go outside that storyboard.

This is just like a movie we watch in a cinema. The beginning and the end, as well as the entirety of circumstances we will encounter in the movie are predetermined before we even start viewing it. This means while we are on the first frame of this film, the final scene is already set. The fact that we are not aware of it does not indicate that these matters have not taken place or have not even been specified yet.

The reason why our heart beats faster while watching the most exciting scene of the movie is not because the next frame is not determined yet, or that the events will be a surprise for us since the following acts are fixed right from the moment of the scenario’s completion. But, we are not informed of the following segment, and we are convinced that the course of affairs will occur spontaneously. Actually, our lives are just like this movie we see in a cinema.

The only difference is that there is a distinct movie for each one of us, and everyone is only capable of experiencing the predetermined story in his particular movie. Our past, future and present are all a part of this motion picture. Just as how we cannot change the characters, story line, or the end of a movie, in the same way, we have neither the capacity nor the power to make even the smallest revision related to our lives. And there is no exception to this. 

And every one of us is seeing over our own movie right inside a dark room just as we are in a movie theater. We can never go outside that room throughout our lives.

 When compared to a movie theater, the difference is that we are viewing our own motion picture not inside a huge cinema, but on the contrary inside a few cubic millimeters of flesh at the rear of our brains. This fact is not an opinion, a belief or a philosophical doctrine: It is the scientific truth. Every person who has lived has watched the external world solely from within that minute center of vision at the back of the brain. All the things we describe as seeing, hearing, touching or feeling take place in the interior of our brains. But what is most surprising is that there is no color, sound or picture inside of it because the minuscule movie theater in our brains is sound and light proof. In other words, there is only pitch darkness and absolute silence in the brain. The only thing we can find there are electrical impulses.

In her book Mapping the Mind, the science writer Rita Carter describes how we perceive the world:

Each one [of the sense organs] is intricately adapted to deal with its own type of stimulus: molecules, waves or vibrations. But the answer does not lie here, because despite their wonderful variety, each organ does essentially the same job: it translates its particular type of stimulus into electrical pulses. A pulse is a pulse is a pulse. It is not the color red, or the first notes of Beethoven’s Fifth—it is a bit of electrical energy. Indeed, rather than discriminating one type of sensory input from another, the sense organs actually make them more alike.

Just like the movie that we see in a cinema is reflected on the screen from a projector, all the images we come across are reflected on our eyes in the form of photons, and our eyes, ears and skin turn that light into electrical impulses then transmit it to the appropriate center inside our brains. In that regard, we can only experience the happenings we are shown or made to hear and sense inside our brains. In other words, we are dependent on that miniature movie theater inside our brains and we can never move it into the outside world. It is as if we are locked up there. And there is no other alternative than to live by what is in that movie script. The day of our birth, the date, hour and second of our death, the schools where we will receive our education and the college we will enter, how many children we will have and which diseases we will have throughout our lives are all fixed on that reel of film. Our Lord, Who decrees what is in our destiny, informs us of this truth in the Qur’an:

“We have created all things in due measure.” (Surat al-Qamar, 49)

Now that we can understand that all the incidents we experience in our lives are a part of our destiny, and our Lord has predestined the entirety of details even before our birth and creates them all for a good reason, then our responsibility is to be in full awareness that we are experiencing our destiny and we should be completely pleased with our Lord.

Despite all the precautions we may take, we cannot prevent any accidents that are in our destiny…

No matter how much we study, we cannot be admitted to a better school than what is predestined in our destiny…

Even if we may work our hardest, with maximum effort, we can never achieve any success other than the one designated in our destiny…

Our efforts, our endeavors and our precautions, are all but service to God and obligatory in religion. But, all of these have no power to change what is prescribed for us in our destiny.

Consequently the only thing that we should be doing while we are watching our own movie inside that pitch black, desolate, silent cinema hall the size of a lentil inside our brains is to think that the end of the movie we are watching is already determined and to put our trust in God, not to be sad in the face of troubles we come across and not to be spoiled in the face of blessings we’re given, to love our Lord dearly and to be pleased with everything He created. Because the opposite is haram (forbidden) according to the Qur'an and the result won’t change. This fact is revealed in the Qur'an as thus:

 “Nothing occurs, either in the earth or in yourselves, without its being in a Book before We make it happen. That is something easy for God. That is so that you will not be grieved about the things that pass you by or exult about the things that come to you. God does not love any vain or boastful man.”  (Surat Al-Hadid; 22-23)

ADNAN OKTAR Believers are like the different parts of a building, each one supporting the other.' Then he demonstrated what he meant by interlocking his fingers.

(Hadith of Al-Bukhari and Muslim, Words of the Prophet Muhammad, p. 67)


 

Unity, cooperation, solidarity, friendship, self-sacrifice, support, and similar other qualities are some of the beautiful attributes which are the underlying foundation of the Qur'anic morality. This is stated in many sayings of Our Prophet (pbuh). One of them reads:

'Believers are like the different parts of a building, each one supporting the other.' Then he demonstrated what he meant by interlocking his fingers. (Hadith of Al-Bukhari and Muslim, Words of the Prophet Muhammad, p. 67)

The religion of Islam ensures the establishment of a better world where there is love, peace, tolerance and understanding to one another. Societies possessing these features experience rapid development and achieve greater power. Once unity and cooperation are attained, individuals of such a society could channel their strength and energy towards goodness and good deeds rather than into disputes, fights, conflicts and wars. Essentially, a cause to which people commit themselves and devote all their effort, power, zeal and support, both material and spiritual, results in an ultimate success and beauty. What is more important is that God gives glad tidings that individuals working in unity and solidarity for good will receive God's help, support and power. For this reason, God reminds believers not to dispute among themselves so as not to lose strength. The verse below makes this point clear:

Obey God and His Messenger and do not quarrel among yourselves lest you lose heart and your momentum disappear. And be steadfast. God is with the steadfast. (Surat al-Anfal: 46)

Establishing unity among the righteous is an exalted virtue recommended by God. Especially in a time where evil has permeated every aspect of society, not a single evil feature like peevishness, resentment or bickering should be tolerated among the good. Putting forth effort to remove such evil influences and adopting a compromising and conciliatory attitude is a great act of worship.

The believers are brothers, so make peace between your brothers and have fear of God so that hopefully you will gain mercy. (Surat al-Hujurat: 10)

Disputes, enmity, hatred and anger are the features of immoral conduct inspired by the evil. True Muslims never conduct themselves under the influence of these undesirable feelings; they have fear for God and are always modest, friendly, thoughtful and full of love in their relations. People who are not sincere in their cause may feel jealous of their closest friends and even of their own brothers and sisters. Each other's success may stir up feelings of envy in their hearts. On the contrary, a true Muslim takes pride in other believers' success, and is happy for them as if it were his own accomplishment, and feels grateful to God for the blessings He has granted believers. Furthermore, he supports them in their endeavour and offers guidance if necessary. Those lacking such morals, on the other hand, hamper the progress of others. Feelings of rivalry and jealousy spoil the good deeds engaged in to attain the good pleasure of God, and accordingly, ruins any beauty or blessings. God's Messenger, the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), also drew attention to this point and advised the believers to guard against such bad manners:

Do not envy each other, do not bid against each other, do not hate each other, do not turn your backs on each other, and let none of you sell upon the sale of another. Be slaves of God, brothers. A Muslim is the brother of a Muslim, he does not wrong him, fail to assist him, lie to him nor despise him. (Imam an-Nawawi, The Complete Forty Hadith, p. 122)

Said Nursi, also known as Bediuzzaman (the Wonder of the Age) who is one of the greatest Islamic scholars of the 20th century gives extensive reference to these issues in his Risale-i Nur collection, a commentary on the Qur'an. In the sincere style that is peculiar to him, Bediuzzaman relates that believers should strictly avoid corrupt feelings such as competitiveness when they strive for a common goal:

The service of the truth is like carrying and preserving a great and weighty treasure. Those who carry that trust on their shoulders will be happy and grateful whenever powerful hands rush to their aid. Far from being jealous, one should proudly applaud the superior strength, effectiveness and capacity of those who in upright love come forward to offer their help. Why then look on true brothers and self-sacrificing helpers in a spirit of rivalry, thus losing sincerity? You will be exposed to fearsome accusations in the eyes of the people of misguidance, such as pursuing worldly interest through religion, even though it is something a hundred times lower than you and your belief, earning your livelihood through the knowledge of truth and rivalling others in greed and acquisitiveness. The sole remedy for this disease is to accuse your own soul before others raise these charges, and always to take the side of your fellow, not your own soul. (Bediuzzaman Said Nursi, Risale-i Nur Külliyati II (The Risale-i Nur Collection II), The Flashes Collection, The Twentieth Flash)

As Bediuzzaman Said Nursi also states, offering one's service towards establishment of the moral values of the Qur'an can be seen as preserving a treasure for the believers; one that is extremely precious. To this invaluable service, everybody must provide his wholehearted support and help. Feeling jealous of another believer who offers his devoted and unwavering support, or considering him as a rival, is unacceptable for a true Muslim. A believer should be proud of others' commitment and provide his support.

Jealousy is an attribute of the evil alliance. The existence of such an evil trait among individuals collaborating for a righteous end does nothing but diminish the strength of the alliance. It is surely the evil alliance that benefits from such detriment. As Bediuzzaman says, the only cure for this illness is not following one's ego and always taking the side of one's fellow.

In the Risale-i Nur collection, Bediuzzaman draws a comparison between the machinery of a factory and believers. The harmonious and smooth functioning of this machinery is essential for a productive output. A similar harmony is also required in the co-operation among believers. Said Nursi explains that believers should avoid talk which could cause jealousy and bitterness. Just as how a factory ensures a timely and efficient output only when its machinery works in harmony and does not conflict with itself, so should believers working for a common goal to earn the good pleasure of God exhibit similar harmony. They should strive together without searching for one another's mistakes and defects. In a world where disbelievers ally themselves against the good, are filled with feelings of hatred and envy for the believers, and oppress the poor, the homeless, women, children, and the elderly, all these oppressed people hope for the help of the conscientious. In this case, if wise, sincere, conscientious and honest people use their powers against each other, they may be held accountable for this in the sight of God. It is essential that believers see no limits in improving their alliance, cooperation, friendship, solidarity and affection for another, and never fall into a disagreement which will weaken them. This spirit of believers is best stated in the words of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh):

You will observe that the believers are like the parts of the body in relation to each other in matters of kindness, love and affection. When one part of the body is afflicted, the entire body feels it; there is loss of sleep and a fever develops. (Hadith of Al-Bukhari and Muslim on the Authority of Nu'man Ibn Bashir, Words of the Prophet Muhammad by Maulana Wahiduddin Khan, p. 68).

The solidarity of the people, who purify themselves of every form of worldly ambition, jealousy and competitiveness, who channel every positive feeling, every effort, and every activity for the good of others, without making it a matter of personal pride, will break the resolve of the alliance of the evil. 

ADNAN OKTAR Following ratification of the ruling by the Malaysian Court of Appeals  that the name “Allah” can only be used by Muslims, Prime Minister Najib Razak once again defended the decision. What first needs to be said is that in the same way that this ruling is incompatible with the friendship of Christians and Muslims - who have lived together in Malaysia for many years -  it also conflicts with understanding of Islam itself.


 

Non-Muslims constitute some 40% of the population of Malaysia. The fact that copies of the Bible published in the Malay language 400 years ago used the term ‘Allah’ gives us a better idea of the problem to which this ban will lead. Alongside the question of social peace and understanding, there is no logic in religious terms in telling someone who uses the name ‘Allah’ that he must not do so. There is nothing troubling about a non-Muslim using the name Allah in prayer and worship; on the contrary, it is a cause for rejoicing for a Muslim. 

While this is going on in Malaysia, more interesting things are happening in Iran. No matter how much I say that there can be no solution until the deep state in Iran and Shiite extremism are eliminated, I still support all the initiatives, since the election of President Ruhani in Iran indicates a positive step forward for the region that will lead the way to peace and brotherhood. 

Following the election of Ruhani, major steps have been taken toward the dream of a freer Iran. Language denying the  Holocaust  is being abandoned, moderate messages from President Ruhani via Twitter on the occasion of  his U.S. visit, the telephone conversation between President Obama and President Ruhani, and President Ruhani ending his address to the U.N. by emphasizing the common values found in the Torah, the Gospels and the Qur’an are some of these strides forward. Another instance was added to these just the other day.

President Ruhani hosted Archbishop Leo Boccardi in his office. The message, accompanied by a photograph, that was published on Twitter following that meeting was exceedingly important. President Ruhani said:

“Today we have common objectives and enemies. Extremism and terrorism are our common enemies and, based on the divine teachings, human interactions and cooperation for the elimination of poverty and injustice are common objectives,” We need to have a deeper knowledge of each other’s beliefs and cultures, because nowadays, most of the gaps and enmities are rooted in unfamiliarity and lack of knowledge about each other’s cultures.”

President Ruhani’s words are actually a reflection of the moral values recommended by Islam. According to Islam, Christians and Jews are the People of the Book, and Muslims’ relations with the People of the Book are based on love and understanding. The faithfulness to the Prophet Jesus or the Prophet Moses of the People of the Book, and their loyalty to the Torah or the Gospels, are delightful things for Muslims.

Another important matter shaping Muslims’ relations with the People of the Book is that it is lawful in Islam for Muslims to eat food prepared by them, and Muslim men are allowed to marry women from the People of the Book. The fact that Allah encourages Muslims to engage in such social relations is clear proof that He wishes us to establish warm and high-level human relations with the People of the Book. Sitting down at the same table and raising children together by marrying and spending a lifetime together is a fine and appropriate response from Islam to those who strive to create division and sow disagreement between the two communities.

There may have been various conflicts and disagreements between members of the three divine faiths in the past. However, these did not originate from the essence of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, but from mistaken ideas and opinions on the part of nations, communities and individuals, and from expectations of political or economic gain. Otherwise, one of the common aims of the three divine faiths is for all people to live in peace, tranquility and security, and all opinions that reject that aim and encourage conflict are mistaken in the eyes of all three faiths.

The responsibility of sincere and sensible Christians, Jews and Muslims of good conscience is to assist one another against wickedness and wicked people, and to work together in union and togetherness. That union must be built on the basis of the principles of love, respect, affection, compassion, understanding, harmony and cooperation.

So let us be united and work together to eliminate all the causes that might lead to conflict and fighting. Let us strive together against the bigotry that hinders such an alliance. Let us love and watch over one another. Let us not make differences of belief into pretexts for conflict. Let us build upon our common beliefs for unity and togetherness.

ADNAN OKTAR There is an urgent need for solidarity and cooperation between people of good conscience from Christians, Jews and Muslims, as they are capable of preventing the scourges of our day when they unite. This is not difficult considering the common ground between the Islamic civilization and the Judeo-Christian culture that constitutes the fundamentals of the Western civilization. 


 

Today the world needs peace, friendship, and solidarity more than ever. The conflicts that defined the twentieth century still persist, and innocent people all around the world continue to suffer.

There is an urgent need for solidarity and cooperation between people of good conscience from Christians, Jews and Muslims, as they are capable of preventing the scourges of our day when they unite. This is not difficult considering the common ground between the Islamic civilization and the Judeo-Christian culture that constitutes the fundamentals of the Western civilization.

Today, hundreds and thousands of children, women and men are being killed, displaced, or persecuted due to hostility, hatred and anger instilled in people through anti-religious sentiments. In other words, the lifeblood - faith in God- was cut off from people, and the world turned into a scene of madness with new terrorist attacks and killings every other day. 

This plague of unbelief is hurting all people of the world. The only way to end to this tyranny is the alliance of devout people of Abrahamic religions as only such unity can help build societies of peace, happiness, and safety.  In essence, Muslims, Christians, and Jews have common principles of faith, worship, and moral values. The followers of these faiths believe that God created the universe from nothingness and sustains all matter with His Endless Power; that God created all life forms in a miraculous way; and that man has a soul given by God; that God sent Prophets to humanity throughout history, like the Prophet Muhammad (may God bless him and grant him peace), and the Prophets Jesus, Moses (peace be upon them) along with the Prophets Noah, David, Abraham, Isaac, and Joseph (peace be upon them all); and they love them all; that God created our lives according to destiny; and they all believe in the Resurrection, Hell, Heaven, and the existence of the angels. Not only in matters of faith, the followers of Abrahamic religions also have common values about morality such as the importance of honor, chastity, modesty, selflessness, honesty, compassion, mercy, and unconditional love.

Although Jews and Christians were given a different Law than the Muslims, all sincere believers are required to submit wholeheartedly to God, do what is good, and compete in doing good deeds. All of them who believe in the existence of God and the Hereafter and do good deeds are, in reality, following the true religion our Lord revealed to the Prophet Abraham (pbuh). In the Qur’an God reveals that the religion of Abraham (pbuh) was a haneef religion. The word haneef means: one who surrenders to God’s Will, not compromising in any way on His Religion, and being devout. In one verse, God commands the Prophet Muhammad (may God bless him and grant him peace) to abide by the haneef religion of the Prophet Abraham (pbuh): “Then We revealed to you: ‘Follow the religion of Abraham, a man of pure natural belief. He was not one of the idolaters.’” (Surat An-Nahl: 123)

The Prophet Abraham’s (pbuh) devout descendants all abided by his haneef religion. In the Qur’an this truth is revealed as follows: “Who would deliberately renounce the religion of Abraham, except someone who reveals himself to be a fool? We chose him in this world, and in the Hereafter he will be one of the righteous. When his Lord said to him: ‘Become a Muslim!’ he said: ‘I am a Muslim who has submitted to the Lord of all the worlds.’ Abraham directed his sons to this, as did Jacob: ‘My sons. God has chosen this religion for you, so do not die except as Muslims.’ Or were you present when death came to Jacob and he said to his sons: ‘What will you worship when I have gone?’ They said: ‘We will worship your God, the God of your forefathers, Abraham, Ishmael and Isaac – One God. We are Muslims submitted to Him.’” (Surat Al-Baqara: 130-133)

The religion followed by the Prophet Abraham (pbuh) represents the common ground among Muslims, Jews, and Christians. Love, faith, and respect for the Prophet Abraham (pbuh) are just as important to Muslims as they are for Christians and Jews. Essentially, all Prophets have invited their nations to believe in and worship God and to abide by the limits He has established for humanity. All nations are expected to follow God’s will without fail and to do good deeds in order to earn His reward. So, Muslims, Jews and Christians, people believing in God and obeying His revelation, should unite in this common premise of the haneef religion which commands all to love and obey God, our Creator and our Lord, and pray to Him to lead us to a truer path.

When Muslims, Christians, and Jews unite under these premises, when they realize that they are allies and not enemies in their intellectual efforts against irreligious ideologies, the world will become an altogether different place. The pure religion of the Prophet Abraham (pbuh) who submitted himself to God is the path that will guide them to unity and peace. When this great task of unity is achieved, pains and suffering will be replaced by peace, happiness, wealth and good fortune for entire humanity.

Every step to bring faithful Jews, Christians and Muslims together, will be another step towards ending the darkness that is afflicting our world. Faithful believers should not even miss a second to start working on this crucial mission and seek to be a means to provide peace and security for all the downtrodden, who ask for salvation from our Lord.

ADNAN OKTAR The concepts of right and wrong that show us the way in our lives mostly come from values that are universal to all mankind. Everyone knows, for example, that marriage is sacred or that killing a person is wrong. Being kind to people, helping the poor and elderly are all accepted norms in societies.


 The reason why these principles that constitute the standard moral values in societies are familiar to all of us is that they come from religions. There are major religions in the world that have shaped humanity’s understanding of good and bad, even though one may not be religious or have no detailed knowledge of a religion. Religion brings the most beautiful forms of life for people and hence offers peace, tranquility, order and freedom to societies. The Abrahamic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, together constitute about 56% of the world’s population: Everyone, in one way or another, is acquainted with the ethics these religions put forth.

A single passage from the Gospels is the summary of these values that are in common with both Islam and Judaism.

“You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, do not defraud, honor your father and mother.’” (Mark, 10:19)

In today’s world even though various tensions occur, the original nature of Judaism, Christianity and Islam is firmly against war, conflict, terror and anarchy. This is because the essential elements of all these three religions come from their relative Divine books that are all built on love, respect, understanding and cooperation. The Abrahamic religions do not discriminate between nationality, race, gender, one’s level of education and amount of wealth. Believer or not, they respect and look out for everyone.

Jesus is an example in the Gospel of how people should love one another: “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” (John, 13:34)

Our Lord commands Muslims in the Qur’an not to discriminate among the Prophets and what was revealed to them:

Say: “We believe in God and what has been sent down to us, what was sent down to Abraham and Ishmael, Isaac and Jacob, and the Tribes; what Moses and Jesus were given; and what all of the Prophets were given by their Lord. We do not differentiate between any of them. We are Muslims submitted to Him.” (Qur’an, 2:136)

Another notable fact in the Qur’an is that believing Jews and Christians are praised and given glad tidings for the hereafter:

Those with faith, those who are Jews, and the Christians and Sabaeans, all who have faith in God and the Last Day and act rightly, will have their reward with their Lord. They will feel no fear and will know no sorrow. (Qur’an, 2:62)

It is widely known that the People of the Book, Christians and Jews, have lived peacefully under Islamic administrations both in the time of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and later under Ottoman rule. So much so that those fleeing persecution have always sought shelter in Islamic lands and found security among Muslims.

Indeed, the Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) was the finest example of the character God advised. In addition to countless examples of his gentle approach towards the People of the Book, his letters addressed to Christian and Jewish kings and tribes at the time are still kept in Topkapi Palace, Istanbul to serve as undeniable testaments to his respect and love for them.

History has proved numerous times that members of these Divine faiths have united against perils that threaten humanity such as atheistic and materialistic philosophies, perverse ideologies, moral corruption and degeneration.

What is not generally acknowledged is that there is no hostility against Christians or Jews in the Qur’an. The radicals and some opponents of Islam misinterpret some verses of the Qur’an and use some fabricated hadith to incite animosity between members of these religions.

For instance, the verse below is used by some as a supposed evidence for not taking Christians and Jews as friends.

You who have faith! Do not take the Jews and Christians as your friends [patrons]; they are the friends of one another. Any of you who takes them as friends is one of them. God does not guide wrongdoing people. (Qur’an, 5:51)

In truth, the word translated as ‘friends’ is ‘patrons’, or ‘awliyao’ in Arabic. The real meaning of this word is “guardians, those responsible under the law, saints, lords, owners or rulers.” What is forbidden for Muslims in this verse is for them to come under the rule and management of Jews and Christians; not for them to be friends with them.

As a matter of fact, Almighty God commands Muslims to have friendly ties with the People of the Book in every aspect of social life such as marriage, dining and trade. According to the Qur’an, a Muslim man is allowed to marry a woman of the People of the Book; this is a significant permission because marriage brings two people even closer than kinship, it is a desire to start a family, to spend an entire life and eternity together, to look after one another when they are ill and trust one another. The Qur’an urges such a powerful bond of love between people of these faiths.

The same principle is true for social life. According to the Qur’an, Muslims are allowed to eat food prepared by Jews and Christians, which clearly shows that they are to be trusted. In a similar manner, the way that Muslims are allowed to dine with Jews and Christians under the same roof, as each other’s guests or hosts and enjoying each other’s company is clearly another description of love, friendship and brotherhood.

In a world afflicted by constant war, conflict, moral decline and hunger, all of which result from a lack of faith in God, we, the followers of Abrahamic faiths, cannot accept being responsible for more friction. “Blessed are the peacemakers! For they will be called servants of God..”, states the Gospels [Matthew, 5:9]. Instead of focusing on the differences, we should join forces on the basis of commonalities. It is crucial that Muslims and Christians act together in the intellectual struggle against materialism and atheism.

Let’s not forget: Unity and cooperation bring success, whereas disputes and conflict brings nothing but weakness. The current situation of the world demands the immediate formation of such an alliance between the pious people of the three faiths.

ADNAN OKTAR Muslims and Christians should be united against this wrongdoing that targets the innocent in all parts of our world. The evil behind this atrocity asks for more bloodshed and further plots against believers, regardless of their being women, children or the elderly.


 

In the aftermath of a bloody attack against Christians that killed dozens in Egypt, we are assured once again that Muslims and Christians should be united against this wrongdoing that targets the innocent in all parts of our world. The evil behind this atrocity asks for more bloodshed and further plots against believers, regardless of their being women, children or the elderly. Such brutality is a display of the materialist philosophy that assigns no value to human life and finds conflict and enmity to be the goal of existence. Covering under various pretenses, the assailants actively plan to sow the seeds of even more widespread conflict amongst believers.

Collaboration for Love

Yet the efforts carried out in the way of collaboration with intellect, love and compassion between people of good conscience will be the true way of eradicating the grassroots of such hatred and ignorance. Islam provides the lawful grounds for Muslims, Christians and Jews to unite in the common word of faith in God. Religion is the essence of loving and brotherly relations between all people, so the real attainment is through the removal of the materialist ignorance with ideas and intellectual efforts.

That is why the 2nd International Conference on The Origin of Life and The Universe, held recently in Istanbul, accomplished much more than expected as Christian and Muslim speakers stood firm in their determination for allying in their service to God, cordiality and benevolent friendship with reason and science.

Collaboration for Creationism

Presenting their years of research in a well-prepared setting of fossil exhibits, books and posters in the conference hall, scientists provided precise evidence for God’s Creation, creationism, and the fallacies of Darwinism in their address to a highly educated audience. As an answer to the question, “What are the origins of life?” the Technics & Science Research Foundation prepared the stage for scientists to freely express their proofs in fields of biochemistry, informatics, genetics, molecular biology, immunology, psychiatry, sociology and neurology.

Dr. Fazale Rana from Reasons to Believe, the prominent Christian organization in California, affirmed his faith in the Creator with his words, “I was convinced that chemical and physical processes alone could not generate life itself. This realization coupled with the elegant design and biochemical systems forced me to that conclusion– for intellectual reasons alone– that a Creator must indeed exist and must have been responsible for bringing life into being.”

And from the same institution, Dr. Anjeanette Roberts, who, with her dedication to science and faith, quoted from the Bible the phrases that pronounce God’s signs in His creation wherever we turn our eyes, “The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display His craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make Him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard. Their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world.” (Psalms 19:1-4)

Dr. Alberto Cossano also accentuated the irreducible complexity in living organisms resembling the “biological processes operating in the cells inside our body” to software applications and computer programs, all parts of which must be intact in order to be fully functional.

Sociologist Dr. Fabrizio Fratus made an effective stance against the materialist ideology, emphasizing the responsibility to establish “a system with very different values ​​if based on the sense of community and solidarity, as ordained by God.” He criticized Darwin’s theory, saying, “For the materialists, nature is an ongoing war for survival, a battle against their fellow and against other species that every living thing must continually fight.”

The Violence of Evolution

The theory of evolution, unlike creationism, denies the existence of the soul and regards man to be merely a functional apparatus made up of matter and deems the world to be an arena to fight for survival. As Prof. Paolo Cioni put it in his words, “[The] Mind is consequently interpreted by mainstream materialists as nothing more than a byproduct of brain activity.” Claiming man to be a product of matter alone leaves no place for values such as friendship, forgiveness, self-giving or compassion to thrive.

As a matter of fact, the ignorance and philosophy of brutality, war, hatred and conflict that lie in the foundation of Darwinist theory is the reason behind the bloody attack of last week, in the past weeks and in fact, all we encounter. Once humanity realizes that God created us for a specific purpose in this world, to live by the good morals of peace, harmony and love with all human beings, the ongoing troubles will come to an end.

In fact, Mr. Jeff Gardner, who made the closing speech of the conference, elaborated this truth with the following words: “We must proclaim that it is our common, divine nature, that unites us. A divine humanity that has been bequeathed to us all by divine right through the very act of His, our God’s, Creation.”

Hate-mongers and those who seek to incite bloodshed and violence will find no recruits when the egoism and cruelty of the materialist ideology is eradicated in the minds of people.

 

ADNAN OKTAR  In recent times, the topics ‘modern Islam’ and ‘Islam and modernism’ have been frequently discussed in the Islamic world. When people examine them more closely, it becomes very apparent that Islam, both historically and in the future, presents us with an understanding of the most modern way of life and the perfect social model for all people.


 In recent times, the topics ‘modern Islam’ and ‘Islam and modernism’ have been frequently discussed in the Islamic world. When people examine them more closely, it becomes very apparent that Islam, both historically and in the future, presents us with an understanding of the most modern way of life and the perfect social model for all people. However, at this point it is useful to clarify what the expression ‘modern Islam’ really means, which is often misunderstood or distorted by some people.

First of all, ‘modern Islam’ is not the adaptation of Islam to the mentality, lifestyle nor to the understanding of morality and accepted social values of the period. Neither does it mean diverting morals from the essence of the religion of Islam.

Modern Islam is not the wannabe interpretation of Islam through superstitious philosophies such as socialism, communism, materialism, or Darwinism by people with inferiority complex who cannot properly comprehend the greatness of Islam. Also, ‘modern Islam’ is not at all an effort to integrate various degenerate cultural concepts and twisted moral values, such as homosexuality, into Islam by labeling these perversions as modern.

Modern Islam defines the fact that the Islam based only on the Qur’an, free from superstition and bigotry, teaches a concept of modernity that is far beyond the perception and comprehension of what most people or societies understand. Modern Islam is the perfect system that will emerge when people live in the sincerest after having understood the Qur’an in the most correct way. It is the true application of democracy and freedom.

Modern Islam is the Islam our Prophet (pbuh) and his companions lived by. The period in which these blessed people lived was a period where liberty, freedom of thought, democracy, justice and human rights were practiced perfectly. It was a time when happiness, comfort, honesty and sincerity prevailed, and Islam in its true sense was the most comfortable, easy and enjoyable way to live. If the Messenger of God had lived in this period, there is no doubt that he would be the most modern man of our time, the most beautiful example of modern religiosity.

Being the most modern is not a material concept. Modernity means being the most decent, the most imitated, the most loved and liked person in every respect such as morality, reason, culture, understanding, consciousness, attention, depth, status, attitude, manners, behavior, personality, fashion, art and the sense of love.

It is obvious that the understanding of religion, mode of thought and lifestyle prevailing in the overwhelming part of the Islamic world today, is unfortunately not at all related to the model described above. In fact, when Islam is mentioned, a system that is entirely against modernity, quality, aesthetics, art, science and freedom comes to mind in the Western world.

The only reason for this negative perception is because the majority of the Muslims are not following the Islam mentioned in the Quran but rather a religion of “bigotry”, filled with superstitions and dated practices far removed from the Qur’an, yet practiced in the name of Islam. The beliefs, rules, customs and traditions of the tribal culture of the past periods define the social, cultural and moral basis of this fanatic system. This superstitious system, which can also be referred to as the “religion of the ancestors” and severely condemned in many verses of the Qur’an, is unfortunately recognized as the “religion of Islam” among the majority of Muslims, and also in the Western world today.

Women are the greatest victims of tribal cultures, and have been subjects to the strongest sanctions, oppression, prohibitions and the hardships stemming from this bigotry. The fact that women are considered as second-class human beings, subjects to domestic and external violence, excluded from the social life, considered as the property of her husband or family, forced into marriage as a commodity, deprived of many humanitarian rights and freedoms like education and travel and rendered victims of honor or lapidation killings are all products of a twisted mindset that is inherited from male-dominated tribal order, all of which go against the Qur’an, and are inhumane, brutal practices.

Honor killings, which are committed every 90 minutes in the Islamic world, are considered to be a just act and are not subjected to legal sanctions. In some countries where honor killings are the most prevalent and considered virtually legal, more than 1000 honor killings are covered up and left unpunished every year.

While a bigoted understanding of Islam considers making women similar to men by leaving them neglected and unhealthy as acceptable, the Messenger of God has strongly banned women becoming similar to men and men becoming similar to women, and has always advised women to be well-groomed. At that time, Muslim women dyed their hair and used make-up, from materials such as henna and hail.

The only reason that some Muslims today are so removed from the possibilities and beauties that a contemporary civilization presents is because of the fact that they abandoned the Qur’an and fell into the grip of bigotry. Living according to an artificial representation of Islam, these people turned their backs on modernity, freedom, prosperity, quality, science, art and aesthetics, painting, music, sculpture, and furthermore became subject to all kinds of exploitations, suffering, poverty, and disaster

The greatest underlying reason for the Western world and the global powers to consider Islam as a threat to their own culture and civilization is because of the bigoted system that goes against the Qur’an. The reason for the emergence of concepts like ‘Islamophobia’ is due to the fear and horror of radicalism, primitiveness and violence, which again are a product of the bigoted system.

Returning to the true essence of Islam, that is, to a pure and true religion based solely on the Qur’an, will be the key not only for the salvation, peace, happiness and security of the Islamic world, but also for the whole world. This is only possible through education. To accomplish this, it is important that the education based on the essence of Qur’an is strengthened. Good sensible Muslims must also put their efforts into scientific works educating people. This is the only way to end the bigotry, anger and the brutality that arises from radicalism.