The Transformations of Man Over the Ages

The following excerpt is taken from “What is the Origin of Man” by Maurice Bucaille pg. 175:

In contrast to the above, the commentary suggested by the verses of the Quran which I shall quote below bears mainly on material notions. We are indeed in the presence here of genuine morphological transformations which take place in a harmonious and balanced fashion due to an organization that is strictly planned, for the phenomena occur in successive phases. Thus the will of God, who rules eternally over the fate of human communities, is made manifest in all its power and splendour through these events.
The Quran first speaks of a ‘creation’, but it goes on to describe a second stage in which God gave form to man. There can be no doubt that the creation and morphological organization of man are seen as successive events.

  • Surah 7, verse 11, in which God is speaking to man:

“We created you and thereupon We gave you form; thereupon, We told the angels: Bow down to Adam.”

Hence it is possible to discern three successive events, the first two of which are important to our study : God created man and thereupon gave him a form (Sawwara in Arabic)

In the same book (pg. 179), Maurice Bucaille argues:

“It is futile to seek discrepancies between the Quran and the data of paleontology, or with the information allowing us to conceive of a creative evolution, for there are none.”


“Having said this however, we cannot rule out the possibility that, in one or several related but independent lineages of hominids, fully developed human groups may have appeared owing to certain genetic modifications arising from God’s creative genius. A creation of this kind cannot be proven, but it is perfectly logical and does not provoke any objections from the point of view of either paleontology or the natural sciences. The above hypothesis causes those who are aware of the latest discoveries in celluar functions -such as the control of those functions by the genetic code- to weigh the matter very seriously. The scientific point raised here is suggested by our knowledge of the role of genetic inheritance in living beings over the course of time, and by our discovery of the fantastic organizational complexity of the tiniest living forms, ranging from the most rudimentary to the most complex organisms.

Creative evolution may thus be said to have caused the appearance of a human lineage which was subsequently to undergo its own specific transformations. The latter took place within an organizational pattern that manifested itself at various levels over the course of time. The growing complexity of structures, as mentioned above, came from the gradual accumulation of new information concerning the development of anatomical formation and functions, above all regarding the brain.” (What is the origin of man pg. 200)


  1. Bucaille, Maurice (1983). What is the Origin of Man? The Answers of Science and the Holy Scriptures. p. 175, p. 179, 200).