Harvard University, one of the world’s leading centers for scientific research, has established that creationism is becoming increasingly more powerful in the world and that the global center for this is the work of the Science Research Foundation (BAV). The latest edition of the book The Creationists, from Scientific Creationism to Intelligent Design devotes a special section to the work of the BAV in setting out the fact of creation. The section in question is summarized as follows in a report headed “Creation Museums and the Rise of Global Creationism:”
An unusual phenomenon that seems to be popping up a lot lately—the creation museum. America"s first one is set to open this spring in Petersburg, Kentucky. The $26.4 million facility boasts animatronic dinosaurs and a state-of-the-art SFX theater, all designed to convince visitors that God created the world exactly as it’s described in the Bible.
And it"s not just in the US. Like everything these days, creationism is going global, as evidenced by a campaign to open small creation museums across Turkey (a typical one, located in an Istanbul kebab shop, greets visitors with a portrait of Charles Darwin framed in dripping blood). Matt Mossman reports in this month"s issue of SEED Magazine:
“In its latest campaign, BAV [Bilim Arastirma Vakfi, or "Scientific Research Foundation"] has opened more than 80 "museums" in restaurants, malls, and city halls across Turkey, each stocked with fossils, posters, and eager volunteers. Oktar"s disciples use tactics cribbed from US organizations like California"s Institute for Creation Research, instructing passersby that evolution cannot explain biology"s complexity and is against the word of God.”
BAV runs quite a sophisticated operation, as evidenced by its website, which, according to Mossman, offers downloadable Power Point presentations and questions with which students can challenge their evolution-loving science teachers. And the affinity with US creationists isn"t mere coincidence--a BAV spokesman traveled to the US last year to testify in the Kansas Board of Education"s intelligent design hearings. Beyond the US and Turkey, creationist movements in Britain and Australia (where they seem to be particularly strong) suggest a growing global trend.
For some time, the standard account of the rise of global creationism has been Ronald Numbers"s The Creationists: From Scientific Creationism to Intelligent Design. In November, HUP will publish an expanded edition of this classic, which tracks the development of creationist thinking over the centuries. Two new chapters chronicle the intelligent design movement and the new thrust of global creationism, which we can see at work in the examples above.
HARUN YAHYA"S WORKS ON CREATION IN AMERICAN SCIENTIFIC MAGAZINE
September 2006 European edition of the world-renowned scientific journal American Scientific carried a report concerning activities in Europe and Turkey on the subject of creation. The largest part of the article was about Adnan Oktar, better known under the pen name Harun Yahya, and his activities. The magazine described Adnan Oktar’s activities on the subject of Darwinism by saying that a book called The Evolution Deceit had been in existence for some years, selling millions of copies a year, and that the book had had a profound effect in the Netherlands, and went on to say:
Professor Leirs, an evolutionary biologist at Antwerp University, introduced classes on evolution during the last academic year. “After class,” he says, “a number of Muslim students came to me with this book by Harun Yahya. Since I was unfamiliar with it I was unable to respond to them. I later began examining it and saw that it was opposed to the theory of evolution. Allah was right and Darwin was wrong. That was the main theme of the book, which teaches this to all young Muslims.”
The VU University Amsterdam also made the acquaintance of this work by Yahya last year. Muslim students have made use of the author’s work over the Internet in biology classes. However, they all received poor marks and failed. The students maintained that they had been discriminated against because of their beliefs.
The author briefly introduces himself at the beginning of the book. Harun Yahya, the pen name used by Adnan Oktar, is an interior designer from Istanbul. Best-seller works by him titled “The Creation of the Universe,” “Jesus Will Return” and “Perished Nations” have already been published … The books’ printing and illustrations are very high quality. Harun Yahya is also among the first Muslim writers to make his works available free of charge on the Internet. Information about the author’s works in 40 different languages can be obtained from www.harunyahya.com. People from all over the world can exchange information about the collapse of the theory of evolution, read interviews and order the author’s works by means of his website.
In the books, which open with the words “In the name of Allah,” Yahya states that what he writes is the truth. “Immune to objections, these works are characterized by their features of rapid effectiveness, definite results and irrefutability.” (The Evolution Deceit, 2003) … It is obvious that a great deal of work has gone into the book.