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God and Evolution
The Causes Responsible for Materialist tendencies in the West
Translated from the Persian by Mujahid Husayn
Among the various issues which in my opinion have had a great impact on materialistic tendencies is the false notion that there is a contradiction between the principle of creation on the one hand and the theory of evolution, especially the evolution of living organisms, on the other. In other words, the fallacy is that creation amounts to instantaneous coming into existence of things, while evolution means that things do not have a creator.
As history indicates, the idea existed, especially in the Western world, that the implication of the universe being created by God is that all things should be unvarying and fixed, and that there should be no change in the universe, especially in the principles of the universe, that is, the species. Hence evolution is impossible, especially where it relates to the essence and necessitates a change in the essence of a thing and a mutation of its species. On the other hand, we observe that with the development of the sciences the notion that things, especially living creatures, show an ascending evolutionary movement becomes ever more confirmed and established. The conclusion that is drawn from these two premises is that the sciences, especially biological sciences, are moving in an anti-theistic direction.
As we know, the views of Lamarck and Darwin, especially those of the latter, raised a storm in Europe. Although Darwin was himself a believer in God and religion, and as related, sat the time of his death he held the Bible pressed to his chest,' and repeatedly in his writings declared his faith in God, his ideas were introduced as being totally anti-God.
Someone might say that evolutionism in general (especially Darwinism, in view of the hypothesis that the origin of man is from the ape, which was later abandoned) was considered anti-God because it went against the contents of the holy scriptures. In religious scriptures the creation of man has been usually traced back to a single human being named Adam, and this apparently implies that he was directly created from dust. Accordingly, it was both correct and proper that Darwin and the Darwinists, or rather all the proponents of evolution, be branded as anti-God, because in no way is it possible to reconcile faith in religion with belief in the theory of evolution. There is, therefore, no alternative to accepting one from among these two and rejecting the other.
The reply to this is that, firstly, what the sciences have opined in this regard are hypotheses which are either constantly changing, modified, or even abandoned and replaced by other hypotheses. On the basis of such hypotheses, it is neither possible to reject some idea stated explicitly and without any room for interpretation in a divine scripture, nor is it possible to consider such hypotheses a proof of the baselessness of religion as such and the baselessness of religion as a proof for the non-existence of God.
Secondly, scientific opinion has moved in a direction which shows that the basic changes occurring in living creatures, especially at stages where their species changes and their essence undergoes mutation, are in the form of a leap, swift and sudden. Therefore, the concept of very gradual, intangible and cumulative changes is no longer relevant. When
science considers it possible for an infant to cover a distance of hundred years in a single night, what evidence is there that it cannot cover the distance of hundreds of million years in forty nights? Even if that which has been mentioned in religious texts be presumed to imply explicitly the creation of the first man directly from dust, it has been expressed in a manner that shows that it involved some kind of action and reaction in nature. It is stated in religious texts that Adam's clay was formed in forty days. Who knows, perhaps all the stages which the first living cell had to cover in the natural course in billions of years for it to eventually give rise to a human being, may have been covered in forty days by Adam's clay in extraordinary conditions which the hand of Divine power had brought about, in the same way as the human ovum, in a period of nine months in the womb, is said to cover all the stages the animal predecessors of man took billions of years to cover.
Thirdly, suppose that what the sciences say in this regard is more than a mere hypothesis and is a confirmed scientific fact, that it is not possible to create natural conditions so that matter may swiftly and speedily cover the stages which it covers slowly under a different set of conditions, and that it is a scientifically confirmed fact that man had animal ancestors. In the light of these assumptions, are the relevant religious texts such that they cannot be interpreted accordingly? If we specifically take the Noble Qur'an as the criterion, we find that the Qur'an has narrated the story of Adam in a symbolic manner. I do not mean to say that the Adam mentioned in the Qur'an is not a person's name but a symbol representing the human species. I don't mean to say that. To be certain the first Man (Adam) was an individual and a person having concrete existence. What I mean is that the Qur'an has narrated the story of Adam in a symbolic way from the point of view of his stay in heaven, his seduction by Satan, greed, and jealousy, his expulsion from heaven, his penitence, and so on. The conclusion the Qur'an derives from this story is not from the standpoint of the wonderful creation of Adam and it does not play any role in drawing any theological conclusion. Rather, the Qur'an narrates the story of Adam solely from the point of view of man's spiritual station and from the viewpoint of certain ethical issues. It is fully possible for a person who believes in God and the Qur'an to retain his faith in God and the Qur'an while interpreting the story of Adam's creation in some manner. Today, we know religious persons who have faith in God, the Prophet (s) and the Qur'an, and who interpret the story of Adam's creation in a manner consonant with the modern sciences. No one has claimed that these views contradict with faith in the Qur'an. I myself, while studying these views in books on this subject, find in them many points worthy of attention and reflection, although I am not totally convinced about them.
However, to consider such issues a pretext for rejecting the Qur'an and religion is far from scientific justice, to say nothing of using them as an excuse for negating belief in God.
Fourthly, suppose we accept that the literal meanings of religious texts are not susceptible to an alternative interpretation and that man's descent from animals is scientifically definite. At the most it would mean that one will lose faith in religious scriptures. But why should one lose faith in God? Firstly, it is possible that new religions may emerge which do not subscribe to the idea of man's direct creation from dust as explicitly as the Torah. Secondly, does the rejection of a single, some, or all religions logically imply the rejection of belief in God? There have always been individuals who have had faith in God without adhering to any religion.
From all that we have said it is known that the assumed contradiction between the contents of religious texts and the theory of evolution cannot be considered a reason for inclining towards materialism; the reason must be something else. The fact is that the European materialists
imagined the hypothesis of evolution to be rationally and logically incompatible with the issue of God, irrespective of its compatibility with religion. Accordingly, they proclaimed that belief in God is negated by acceptance of the theory of evolution.
Let us now examine this argument, to see whether there is any rational and logical contradiction between these two issues, or if the inadequacy of the concepts of European philosophy is responsible for an imagined contradiction. Whatever it may be, we need to examine the approach taken by the materialists in taking this contradiction for granted.
We can explain their statements in two ways. Firstly, in the sense that the theists are deprived of their most important argument with the emergence of the theory of evolution. A major argument of the theists for proving the existence of an omniscient and wise creator was the presence of a perfect order of existents. This perfect order is more evident in the plant and animal kingdoms. If the creation of plants and animals had been instantaneous, the argument based on the perfect order of existents would have been correct, because it was not rationally acceptable that a being could come into existence instantaneously and all of a sudden without any intelligent plan, especially where it possesses such structures which show that its formation, design, and organism has been created with a planned purpose. But if the creation of the existents was gradual and extended in time, that is, if it has taken place in the course of hundreds of millions of years and the structure of existents has acquired the present form little by little with the passing of centuries and generations, there is no obstacle to regarding these intricate systems as entirely unplanned. That is, no intelligent power has supervised it and only coincidences and forced conformity with the environment have been the cause of these systems and organisms.
Therefore, with the acceptance and confirmation of mutation the main argument of the theists is taken away from them, and this by itself is sufficient to tilt the balance in favour of the materialists and make a group incline towards that side.
But this interpretation is in itself incorrect. If such views are presented before a vigorous theistic school of thought it will immediately reply that, firstly, it is a mistake to consider the perfection of design as the only argument for the existence of God, and to mention it as the main argument is indeed an exaggeration. Secondly, the whole order of creation is not limited to the structure of animal organs for it to be said that the gradual evolution of species is enough to explain their accidental existence. Thirdly, the important and also the principal reply to this criticism is that the gradual emergence of and accidental changes occurring in the structure of plants and animals are not at all sufficient for explaining the precise systems of their bodies.
Accidental changes can be considered sufficient only when we presume that there occurs a change in the body of a living creature as a result of an accident or an aimless act, or an act meant for some purpose other than the consequence produced; for instance, when a web is formed accidentally on a duck's feet and proves helpful in swimming and is transferred to later generations as a result of heredity.
But, firstly, from the viewpoint of heredity, the transfer of acquired and individual characteristics, especially acquired characteristics, is highly improbable or rather ruled out. Secondly, all organs and members of the body are not like the web of a duck's foot. Generally, every part is itself a part of an elaborate and complicated system, such as those relating to digestion, respiration, vision, hearing, and so on. Each of these systems is an
organized and interlinked apparatus in which the related function and characteristic is not achieved unless all its parts come into existence. For example, the membranes of the eye are not such that each of them be assumed to perform a separate function of the body and as having come into existence gradually in millions of years. Rather the eye, along with all its membranes, fluids, nerves and muscles with their astonishing number, variety, organization and formation performs a single function. It is not admissible that accidental changes, even in billions of years, would gradually give rise to the ocular or auricular system.
The theory of evolution more than anything points towards the role of an intelligent and guiding force in the being of living creatures and demonstrates the principle of teleology.
Darwin himself propounded the principle of adaptation to environment in such terms that he was told that he spoke of it as if it were a metaphysical principle. It is a reality that the capacity of living organisms to adapt to the environment, which is a very mysterious and astonishing power, is something metaphysical; that is, it is subject to a kind of guidance and consciousness of purpose, and is in no way a blind and aimless power.
The principle of evolution implies the presence of an unseen regulating power in the universe no less than any other theory. The reason that Darwin and many other later biologists are theists and religious persons is this that they have not considered the principles and laws of nature-such as the principles of struggle for survival, heredity, selection of the fittest, and adaptation to the environment (if interpreted solely as an ordinary blind natural reaction to the environment)-by any means sufficient for explaining the emergence of living organisms. Of course, we do not say that they did not consider them necessary and reverted to the theory of instantaneous creation of living organisms. All that we are saying is that they did not consider them sufficient.
Actually, the reason why the theory of evolution was considered contradictory to the famous theist argument for the existence of God based upon perfect design was doubtlessly the weakness of the systems of philosophy and metaphysics. Instead of utilizing the emergence of the theory of evolution to the advantage of the theist school, they considered it as antithetical to theist thought, because they imagined that only an instantaneously created universe needed a cause and creator, and if the universe or any species were to come into existence gradually, the gradual natural factors were sufficient to explain their existence. Such assumptions indicate the weakness of the Western systems of philosophic thought.
Apart from the assumption that the theory of evolution weakens the argument by design and perfection of creation, there existed another reason why the evolutionary school was considered antithetical to theism, thus assisting the spread of materialism. This was the supposition that if there were a God, things must have come into existence according to a prior plan; that is, the existence of things should have been anticipated in God's knowledge and then created by His irresistible will.
The presence of a prior plan implies the total absence of chance, because chance contradicts foreknowledge, being something unexpected and unpredictable. But we know that chance plays an extraordinary important and effective role in the creation of the universe. Even if we suppose that chance is not sufficient for the initial existence of things, we cannot deny its existence and effective role in the process of creation For example, the earth, which is the cradle of living organisms, was a fragment which came into existence due to a chance, for instance, due to the sun's nearing a big spherical body and coming under its gravitational pull.
Had there existed a prior plan, or a fate predetermined since eternity, chance would have no role. The conclusion is that if God exists things should come into existence in a manner preplanned and foreknown in His eternal knowledge, and had things been foreknown in God's eternal knowledge there would be no chance. And since chance has an effective role in creation, the creation of things was unpredictable, and since it was unpredictable, there is no God.
Apart from this, if things came into existence due to the eternal Divine will, it was necessary for them to do so instantaneously at one stroke, because God's will is absolute, irresistible and unconditional. The implication of God's absolute, irresistible and unconditional will is that everything He intends to create comes into existence without a moment's delay. Hence it is mentioned in religious texts that God's command is such that when He wills something He says, 'Be', and it comes into existence immediately. Therefore, if the world and things existing in it have come into existence by God's will, it follows that the world must come into existence from the very beginning in whatever form or state it would eventually assume.
The conclusion derived from these two points-one of which relates to God's eternal knowledge and the other to the Divine will-is that if God exists, there exist both an eternal Divine knowledge and an eternal will, and eternal knowledge and eternal will require that things come into existence instantaneously.
The reply is that neither God's eternal knowledge nor His eternal will require that things come into existence instantaneously. Further, neither the theists the world over nor the religious texts have posed the issue in this manner.
It is mentioned in religious texts that God created the universe in six days. Regardless of whatever may be implied by 'six days,' be it six periods, or six days of God, each of which is equal to a thousand years, or six ordinary days amounting to 144 hours, that which is understood from this statement is gradualness. The theists have never said that the eternal knowledge of God and His absolute will necessitate that the heavens were created in a single moment and instantaneously. The scriptures say that they were created gradually during a certain period of time.
And the Noble Qur'an also states very explicitly the gradual development of the foetus in the womb and considers it as a pointer to the knowledge of God. Nobody has ever said that the necessary implication of God's eternal knowledge and will-which is such that when it relates to a certain thing and He says, 'Be,' the thing comes into being-is that the foetus develops momentarily. This was from the viewpoint of the scriptures.
From the point of view of philosophy, the claim that God's eternal knowledge implies that chance does not play any effective role whatsoever, requires a bit of explanation.
From the philosophic viewpoint, fortuity and accident, or in other words chance, does not exist at all, and that which men calls chance is not chance in reality and does not essentially differ in the least from all other causes and effects, prerequisites and consequences.
The word 'chance' is used in two different senses. The first sense is where something comes into being without any efficient cause, that is, a thing that supposedly did not exist comes into existence without the interference of any factor. This kind of chance is rejected by all schools of thought irrespective of their being theists or materialists, because even the materialists do
not accept such a hypothesis about the origin of the universe. This kind of chance is also not related to the topic of our present discussion, because even those who claim that organic changes in animals are due to chance factors do not imply this kind of chance.
The other sense in which this word is used is where a consequence follows from conditions which are not its prerequisite, or when conditions give rise to a consequence which does not follow from them. For example, if you get into a car in Tehran and drive on the Tehran-Qum highway you will reach Qum after two or three hours. You never say that I drove on this highway and accidentally reached Qum, because the natural outcome of this journey is your reaching Qum. Now suppose you have an old friend whom you have not seen for years. While travelling to Qum you are neither thinking about him nor looking around for him, but as soon as you reach 'Aliabad on the Tehran-Qum highway, you get off the car to relax for a while at an inn. Finding an empty chair at a table, all of a sudden you find your friend whom you had not seen for twenty years. You come to know that he was living in Shiraz and had come to Tehran, that he too had stopped there to relax for a while when he saw you. Here each of you will say, 'We met by chance on the Tehran-Qum highway.' The reason why both of you consider this meeting accidental is that in the general course of nature travelling between Tehran and Qum does not necessarily result in such a meeting. Were it necessary, it would mean that such a meeting should occur whenever you travel from Tehran to Qum whatever the circumstances, while it is not so. This event took place only during this particular journey which took place at a particular time under its particular circumstances. That is why this meeting was not foreseeable for you or your friend or anyone in your place, and neither you nor your friend would have been able to include this meeting in his plans while planning his journey. Things which can be foreseen and included in an itinerary are those which occur in the natural course of journey between Tehran and Qum.
But if you turn your attention from the general character of the journey from Tehran to Qum and focus your attention on this particular journey which was made at a particular time under particular conditions, and if you take it into consideration with its accompanying circumstances and conditions and other accompanying events, you will find that your meeting your friend at that specific point and at that moment was not at all accidental; rather it was necessary, natural and inevitable consequence of your journey towards Qum, and was also totally predictable for someone who was aware of all the movements and circumstances of both of you.
This meeting is accidental in the eyes of someone who takes into view the general nature of the journey from Tehran to Qum. Obviously this journey has a set of general implications, and that which lies outside them, from the point of view of its general nature, will be considered chance. But that which exists is not just the general nature; that which exists is that general nature along with a set of condition, and the notion of chance vanishes on taking into consideration these conditions and additional facts .
Here we give another example to further elucidate how accident and chance are subjective in nature; that is, it is an accident or chance from the viewpoint of a person who is ignorant of the causes, whereas from the standpoint of one who has knowledge of the causes involved there is no chance or accident.
Imagine two persons employed in a certain institution and who receive their instructions from a single source. One of them, Mr. A, is employed in Khurasan and the other, Mr. B, works at Isfahan. Instructions are received from the headquarters ordering Mr. A to leave on a certain
date for a disaster-stricken area to perform some specific task, and soon afterwards instructions are received by Mr. B ordering him to go on the same day to the same place for performing another task. Obviously Mr. A and Mr. B meet each other at that place and their meeting is accidental for each of them. Both of them will say that they met each other accidentally on a certain day and at a certain place. Each of them separately views the nature of his task and finds that this meeting was not a necessary consequence of his task and that it was not predictable for either of them. But from the viewpoint of the headquarters, which ordered both of these apparently separate and unrelated assignments that were carried out under its instructions, this meeting was not at all accidental. For the headquarters, which determined the courses of the two journeys from Isfahan and Mashad to that point and arranged both of them in such a manner that the two individuals reached that point on a specific date, their meeting and coming together was very natural and inevitable. The headquarters cannot say that it sent these two and they accidentally met each other at a certain place. Therefore, accident and chance are relative; it is an accident in relation to one who is unaware of the happenings, whereas for one who knows the details of events and has a complete knowledge of the circumstances and conditions there is no accident or chance involved. This is why they say: that which is called 'chance' is such only in relation to one who is ignorant of the causes, not for one who has complete knowledge of the events.
From this we come to know that for God, the Exalted, and in fact from the viewpoint of reality and what actually takes place, there is no question of accident or chance. Hence, to say that 'if we accept God we must also accept that the events in the universe occur in accordance with a plan and are therefore predictable and involve no accident or chance, whereas the sciences believe in an effective and important role of chance and accident,' is something baseless.
The accidents are such with reference to us who are ignorant of the totality of causes, not with reference to God, who is the Creator and Originator of every thing and encompasses all causes, conditions, and circumstances.
Now something regarding [God's] eternal will.
This objection is weaker than the first one. Strangely enough, has been imagined that God's absolute and eternal will implies that all existents come into being instantaneously! What a big blunder! The implication of God's absolute will is that everything should come into existence in the manner He desires and in the form He intends without facing any opposition and obstacle, that there be no gap between His will and the thing willed, not that everything which He desires should come into existence in an instantaneous manner.
To explain, if we, who have a deficient and finite will, will something, we have to rely upon things other than our own will, and unless we obtain those means our will by itself can achieve nothing. Also we need to remove certain obstacles, because our will cannot be realized with their presence. But since God's will encompasses all things and everything is the result of His will, the means and hindrances too are the creation of His will. Thus at the plane where His will prevails there exists nothing by way of a precondition, means, or obstacle: all conditions, means, obstacles and their absence are subservient and subject to His will. Therefore, that which He wills exists in the manner willed by Him, without the least delay. If the existence of a thing depends upon the fulfillment of certain conditions, it is proper to say from the viewpoint of that thing that it depends on these conditions, but it is not correct to say about God's will that it depends upon certain conditions. That is, the execution
of Divine will is not dependent upon anything; rather it is Divine will which ordains the thing with those conditions and it comes into existence in the manner willed by Him without any departure.
Thus the meaning of God's possessing an absolute will is that whatever He wills takes place in the manner He wills, without His will depending upon anything beyond Himself for its execution. Therefore, if He wills a thing's existence to be instantaneous that thing comes into being instantaneously. But if He wills that a thing's existence be gradual it comes into being gradually. It depends upon the mode of the thing's existence and the manner in which God has willed its existence.
If Divine will and wisdom so ordain that living creatures should come into existence gradually in a span of billions of years, they will naturally come into existence in this manner. Therefore, it is wrong to say that God's absolute will requires that everything come into existence instantaneously. The logical implication of the absolute Divine will is that everything comes into existence in the manner decreed by Him, instantaneously or gradually, without depending upon anything beyond the Divine will.
Apart from this, the philosophers have proved that things having a gradual character have an existence that can only be gradual; it is impossible for them to have any other kind of existence, either static or instantaneous. Hence the receptivity (qabiliiyyah) of the receiver (qabil) also necessitates gradualness.
Sadr al-Muta'allihin has proved that there is a kind of motion in the world called 'substantial motion' (harkat jawhariyyah). According to the theory of substantial motion there is nothing static in nature nor can possibly be. All things existing in nature have a gradual existence and it cannot be otherwise. This philosopher, who is also a divine 'arif (gnostic), never thought that there might be people in the future who would imagine that the instantaneous creation of all things was implied by God's eternal knowledge or will.
A few years ago I wrote an article "Monotheism and Evolution" ("Tawhid wa Takamul") for the monthly Maktab-e Tashayy'u in which I have discussed the errors in the approach of Western philosophers in considering theism to be incompatible with the concept of evolution.
Eternity of Matter:
Another example of the inadequacy of Western philosophy is to imagine the concept of eternity of matter to be incompatible with faith in God, while in fact there is no such logical implication between this view and denial of God. Rather the divine philosophers believe that faith in God necessarily implies faith in His eternity and continuous creativity (fayyadiyyat), and it is the continuity of His creativity that implies the eternity of creation.
A Russian scholar had written in an article whose Persian translation was published by a magazine few years ago that Ibn Sina vacillated between materialism and idealism.
Why did this scholar express such a view concerning Ibn Sina while one of Ibn Sina's hallmarks is that he has consistently followed a single line in expressing his views and doctrines and there is no wavering and contradiction in his statements. Maybe his powerful
and extraordinary memory which made it possible for him not to forget any of his thoughts was one of the causes of this characteristic.
This Russian scholar, since he saw on the one hand that Ibn Sina believed in the eternity of matter and did not believe that time had a beginning, thought him to be a materialist. On the other hand, he found him speaking of God, creation and the First Cause and concluded that Ibn Sina is an idealist. Hence Ibn Sina kept wavering between the two poles of materialism and idealism and had no fixed opinion in this regard.
This Russian scholar had such a view about Ibn Sina because he considered the concept of eternity of matter to be incompatible with the idea that matter and the universe were of Divine creation.
However in Ibn Sina's reasoning, where he has discussed the 'criterion for dependence upon a cause' and identified it to be 'essential contingency' (imkan e-dhati), there exists no such contradiction between these two. Earlier we have discussed the topic of criterion for dependence upon a cause, which happens to be one of the most important of philosophical issues and has been only dealt in Islamic philosophy. It was made clear that the logical implication of being caused and created is not coming into existence in time (huduth-e-zamani); there is nothing to stop an existent from having an eternal and everlasting existence while deriving its existence from a being other than itself. We will have more to say on this issue later on.
God or Freedom?
Predetermination and freedom of will (jabr wa ikhtiyar) is a well-known issue of philosophy, theology and ethics. The discussion is about whether man is compelled in his actions and has no freedom of choice, or is free in his actions. There is another issue discussed in metaphysics which is named qada wa qadar' (Divine ordainments and determinations). Qada' and qadar implies the decisive Divine command which determines the course of the world's events and their limits and extent.
The topic of qada and qadar involves the question whether Divine qada' and qadar is general and covers all things and events or not. In the case of its being general, what is the position of human freedom and free will? Is it possible for Divine qada and qadar to be general and all-inclusive and for man to have a free role at the same time?
The answer is, yes. I have myself discussed this topic in a treatise written on this subject and published under the title "Man and Destiny" (Insan wa sarnawisht) and have proved that there is no incompatibility between God's general qada' on the one hand and man's freedom of will on the other. Of course, that which I have mentioned therein is not something which has been said for the first time by me; whatever I have said is inferred from the Noble Qur'an and others before me have done the same, especially Islamic philosophers, who have adequately discussed this topic.
But today when we look at Europe we find persons like Jean Paul Sartre lost in the labyrinths of this issue, and since they have based their philosophy on choice, freewill and freedom, they do not want to accept God. Jean Paul Sartre says: Since I believe and have faith in freedom I cannot believe and have faith in God, for if I accept God I will necessarily have to
accept fate, and if I accept fate I cannot accept individual freedom, and since I want to accept freedom and I love it and have faith in it, I cannot have faith in God.
From the Islamic point of view, faith and belief in God is equivalent to man's freedom and freewill. Freedom in the real sense is the essence of man. Although the Noble Qur'an introduces God as very great and His will as all- pervasive, it also strongly defends human freedom.
There has certainly come on man a period of time when he was nothing worthy of mention. We created man of a mingled sperm so as to try him; and We made him hearing and seeing. Surely We guided him upon the way, whether he be thankful or unthankful.
This implies that man is free, and he may choose the right path or the path of ingratitude (kufran) of his own will.
Whosoever desires this present world, We hasten for him therein what We will unto whomsoever We desire; then We appoint for him the hell wherein he shall roast, condemned and rejected. And whosoever desires the world to come and strives after it as he should, being a believer, those, their striving shall be thanked. Each We succour, these and those, from thy Lord's gift; and thy Lords gift is not confined.
Yes, this is the Qur'anic logic. The Qur'an does not see any incompatibility between God's general qada and man's freedom and freewill.
From the philosophical point of view, too, conclusive proofs which negate any incompatibility between the two have been provided.
However, these philosophers of the twentieth century have imagined that they can be free only if they do not accept God, and that too in the sense that they can in that case break the relation of their will from the past and the present, that is with history and the environment, and with a will severed from history and society choose and build the future, although the issue of determinism and freewill is not related to the question of acceptance or negation of God. By accepting God, too, it is possible to envisage an active and free role for the human will, as it is also possible to negate God and at the same time to challenge the concept of freewill on the basis of the universal law of causation. That is, the root of determinism, or the imagined implication of determinism, lies in the belief in a definite system of cause and effect acknowledged both by the theists as well as the materialists. If there is no incompatibility between a definite system of cause and effect and human freedom and freewill, which in fact there is not, belief in God, too, does not entail negation of freewill. For more details on this issue refer to the book Insan wa sarnawisht. Here we intend to mention a few more examples of the philosophical errors of the West in the field of metaphysics.
Directorate of Distance Education M.Ed Session 2010-2011 List of research problems and names of supervisors For the conduct of thesis Note: All the below listed students are directed to start working on their respective projects under the guidance of their concerned supervisors. They will have to submit a copy of the synopsis (research proposal) duly signed by their supervisor con
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