Just when you think that it can’t get even more extreme and bizarre … it does. As reported in the UK’s Independent today …
A prominent British imam has been forced to retract his claims that Islam is compatible with Darwin’s theory of evolution after receiving death threats from fundamentalists.
Seriously! … believing in reality is now such a serious thought crime for Islamic fundamentalists that it justifies the issuing of death threats!!
Dr Usama Hasan, a physics lecturer at Middlesex University and a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society, was intending yesterday to return to Masjid al-Tawhid, a mosque in Leyton, East London, for the first time since he delivered a lecture there entitled “Islam and the theory of evolution”.
But according to his sister, police advised him not to attend after becoming concerned for his safety. Instead his father, Suhaib, head of the mosque’s committee of trustees, posted a notice on his behalf expressing regret over his comments. “I seek Allah’s forgiveness for my mistakes and apologise for any offence caused,” the statement read.
Words completely fail me. This chap is a moderate Islamic cleric living in the UK, and yet he faces death threats. The position among many Islamic scholars with scientific backgrounds is that the theory of evolution and Islam are compatible.
Apparently this extreme anti-evolution nonsense is part of a growing movement by a small but vocal group of largely Saudi-influenced orthodox Muslims who use evolution as a way of discrediting imams whom they deem to be overly progressive or “western orientated”. But then it should come as no surprise to learn that this same set of folks hail from a sphere of influence that still preaches that the Sun revolves around the Earth, so I guess disbelief in evolution is not a huge leap for them.