Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Free Atlas!

This week, my advisor received a free book in the mail. The Atlas of Creation, Volume I, by Harun Yahya. In the accompanying letter he writes:

While Darwin asserted his theory, he suggested that living beings evolved from one another and that we would see the emergence of intermediate forms as more and more fossil records emerge- with the hope that they might be found in the future--, but since then not a single intermediate form has been uncovered. On the contrary every unearthed fossil has refuted Darwin and carried the characteristics that prove the fact that "SPECIES HAVE NEVER CHANGED".
It's an enormous book, with large decent-quality photographs of things like mosquitoes in amber, and other demonstrations that organisms that were on the earth a few million years ago are similar to organisms that are on the earth today. And it asserts, over and over, (and often in full caps), that EVOLUTION IS FALSE. It's quite a read.

How did my advisor warrant such a gift? Is she a creationist? Well, from the scorn in her voice when she put it on the lunch table, I'll take it as a "No." Is she an evolutionary biologist? No. Well, when talking about this book with one of the grad students in the lab, I discovered that all of the principal investigators in our department have received this book in the mail. It's got to be worth $200 just for the photographs (though it retails for between $100-250, depending on where you find it), so our department alone makes it about $2000 spent on creationist books. So watch for your copy in the mail, apparently this guy has some cash to spend.

And who is Harun Yahya? Well, based on this photograph, I'd say he's in hiding, and only showing his wax body double. But from his website:
Born in Ankara in 1956... ...His intellectual activities opposing materialism and atheism began to elicit reactions from wider circles. Certain groups, alarmed by Adnan Oktar's nationalist and religious activities, set up a major conspiracy against him. Their plot coincided with the publication of his work Judaism and Freemasonry, which provoked an enormous response.
I'll bet it did. According to Wikipedia (take that for what it's worth):
The publication of Soykırım Yalanı sparked much public debate. [13] This book claims that “what is presented as Holocaust is the death of some Jews due to the typhus plague during the war and the famine towards the end of the war caused by the defeat of the Germans”[14].
I know that those of you in labs will be waiting with bated breath for your free copies of this page-turner.



ERV said...

From what I understand, HY is a group of individuals under a common pen-name. For the nice photos-- HY steals photographs, puts an 'HY' watermark on them, and pretends thats not copyright infringement. And then theres that little problem of HY being associated with extortion and child prostitution rings. Nice folks.

Look up Taner Edis-- Hes basically the only guy I know taking Islamic Creationism seriously.

The Factician said...

Yeah, looking at his website, he's been extremely prolific. It would make more sense if he had multiple people putting the books together.

That said, the book he sent us is really little more than a picture book (a pretty fantastic picture book) with very little text. I think if I were inclined to steal photos, I could put a book like that together in a few weeks.

I'm actually going to ask my advisor if I can keep it, because it's a hell of a conversation piece, and my son will *love* the pictures.

Anonymous said...

ERV said... "For the nice photos-- HY steals photographs, puts an 'HY' watermark on them, and pretends thats not copyright infringement."

You are really sick. Please make a medical check up.