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The Prophet Adam and Human Evolution

Sheikh Haitham Al-Haddad

category: Aqeedah


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In reality, there is no disparity between religious creed and science, and if there seems to be so, it inevitably implies that there has been some form of misunderstanding, either in terms of our religious or scientific knowledge. However, a decisive part of being Muslim is to acknowledge that the information related by way of the Qur'an and Sunnah entails certainty, whereas any other knowledge that we acquire is prone to human error. Thus, if the scriptures posit anything related to science and the overwhelming majority of scholars affirm its meaning, then we have to believe in it accordingly as such knowledge is fact-based and not merely human perception. The Qur'an and Sunnah address various disciplines such as science, history, geography, anthropology, politics and others. Whatever is mentioned there should be adopted as an aspect of our faith, "they say: we believe in it, all of it is from our Lord." [15] Failing to do so suggests either one's negation of more than half of the Qur'an, or accepting a text which is essentially devoid of meaning as it ends up meaning anything we desire it to, and this is how many of the obdurate fall into disbelief. For example, it has been repeatedly argued that the Qur'an is not a book of history, and so, the heretics argue that we are not obligated to believe historical details which Allah has revealed. Of course, the Qur'an is not a book of many things, but that is not to suggest that various topics are touched upon. Indeed, Allah says,

"There is not a moving (living) creature on earth, nor a bird that flies with its two wings, but are communities like you. We have neglected nothing in the Book, and then to their Lord they (all) shall be gathered." [16]

The ruling concerning the belief in Adam's primate descendents.

Restricting the discussion merely to a ruling may be counterproductive as anyone who mistakenly concludes that it is not kufr (disbelief) will assume such profanation is to be tolerated, and so therefore, the main issue is not the ruling of such an immoral belief and whether it is kufr, but instead the gravity of this belief and what it signifies - it is the negation of what the ummah has endorsed as well as being in violation of countless proofs that state otherwise. Endorsing the presumption that humans evolved necessitates accepting reprehensible beliefs about the noble Prophet, Adam, may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him, and that his parents were either apes or ape-like beings! It is to insult the station of prophethood by claiming that Adam was taken care of by human-like baboons. Were Adam's parents able to speak or did they merely grunt? Were they obliged to worship Allah or not? What was the extent of Adam's cognitive faculties? Do human beings now have more advanced faculties than he did – have they evolved since his time on earth? How is it that the Qur'an disregards a significant aspect of Adam's life although he discusses, in detail, what was before it and what came after.

If we believe that Allah is the Creator and can create anything, then what is wrong in accepting that he created Adam directly from clay, fashioned him, and brought him to life instantaneously? What is it that they negate? Why do we need to distort the meanings of countless Qur'anic verses in favour of a theory that continually changes? Must we negate the numerous and authentic ahadith that clearly establish a non-evolutionist narrative?

In conclusion, to use the theory of Darwin or any other theory that stems from it in order to justify the wicked belief that Adam was born of non-human parents is, in essence, to deny the existence of Allah as supreme creator who creates from nothing by mere command. It is this method of creating (although there are other ways as well) that establishes Allah's rububiyyah (lordship), for in affirming unjustified theories of human evolution we make chance the creator, since anything that is created exists merely because chance decided so. But Allah says, "Or do they assign to Allah partners who created the like of His creation, so that (both) creations seemed alike to them?' Say: 'Allah is the Creator of all things; He is the One, the Irresistible.'" [17]

I call upon those who believe and adhere to Islam to affirm the clear and decisive Qur'anic revelations and lucid ahadith, all of which negate the notion of human evolution, let alone Adam having non-human parents. I also call upon them to make the Islamic texts the primary source of authority in all of their affairs, since (Allah) the One who reveals revelation is most knowledgeable about the affairs of the universe. Let us not allow those of no faith to dictate our readings of scripture, our implementation of the Islamic faith, or our notions of what is to be deemed as being most superior, both in terms of creed and actions.

For those Muslims who endorse the theory of human evolution, contemplate the scripture with a believing and unbiased heart whilst keeping in mind the Sunnah of Allah's noble Messenger. Strive against egotism and haughtiness and do not fear the criticisms of the disbelievers. Allah says,

"Therefore flee unto Allah; I am a plain warner to you from Him. And set not any other god along with Allah; I am a plain warner to you from Him." [18]

Allah knows best.
May peace and blessings be upon the Prophet, his family, his Companions,
and all those who follow them in righteousness and the correct creed.


[1] 16:43; 21:7
[2] See:
[3] 3:7
[4] 38:75
[5] Lalika'i, no. 729-730
[6] Authenticity agreed upon by al-Bukhari and Muslim; a mutawaatir hadith.
[7] 3:59
[8] 2:31
[9] 4:1
[10] 7:189
[11] 49:13
[12] cf. 5:60, 7:166
[13] 17:70
[14] Muslim
[15] 7:3
[16] 6:38
[17] 13:16
[18] 51:50-51


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