Faculty member publishes paper in religion and science journal

King’s Academy faculty member Moamer Khalayleh has co-authored and published this month an academic paper in the Zygon Journal of Religion and Science. Entitled “Does Criticizing Intelligent Design (Id) Undermine Design Discourse in the Qurʾān? A Kalāmic Response,” the paper addresses the argument of some Muslim thinkers against evolution using intelligent design (ID) arguments.

In the publisher’s abstract, it states that one possible impetus for this line of reasoning is the several indications of design mentioned throughout the Qurʾān. Therefore, criticizing ID could be seen as a direct attack on the Qurʾānic outlook. However, through their research, the authors argue that this is a false equation.

“The Qurʾānic design argument, as articulated in the tradition of Sunnī scholastic theology (kalām), argues for the existence of a supernatural God by acknowledging natural causes that bring about designed phenomena in the universe,” the abstract reads. “By contrast, Muslim thinkers who use ID to argue against evolution are arguing for the existence of a supernatural being through the supposed inability of science to explain designed phenomena through natural causes. Thus, there is a fundamental difference between the design outlook provided in the Qurʾān versus the arguments of ID. Accordingly, this article argues that critiquing ID does not undermine the design discourse of the Qurʾān.”

Khalayleh is a Ph.D. candidate at Cardiff University’s School of History, Archaeology and Religion. He currently teaches Islamic Studies in the Department of History, Religion and Society at King’s Academy, as well as physics with the Department of Physical and Life Sciences.

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