TOM HENEGHAN: Do you work with United States creationists?
ADNAN OKTAR: Years ago, they came to our conferences. But creationism in the U.S. is not as powerful. It doesn’t have very sound scientific foundations. Our creationism is much stronger. It has better foundations and is much more influential. For example, they say the world has another 7,000 years to go. But this is not scientific and they show no evidence for this. This shows how weak their system is. But our ideas are always creating evidence and we present the evidence from history. We say the universe was created by the Big Bang billions of years ago. These ideas are in parallel with science.
TOM HENEGHAN: Do you support “intelligent design”?
ADNAN OKTAR: The intelligent design system seems very insincere to me. It’s the product of a weak belief system. Everything was created by Allah and we have scientifically proven this.
TOM HENEGHAN: They just don’t say that God did it. Don’t you believe that?
ADNAN OKTAR: It is obvious that this is insincere. If one believes that Allah has created the world, he should say so openly. Avoiding this only creates suspicion. Just saying some power has created this will be annoying for people who sincerely believe in Allah.
TOM HENEGHAN: What has been the reaction to your books in the U.S.?
ADNAN OKTAR: We are in parallel with their ideas. It is in total agreement with the belief system of Christians and Jews. When you look at the belief systems of the three major religions, you see there are many overlaps and common ideas about afterlife, prophets, and moral issues. You see they’re all in parallel. When Jesus Christ arrives, this discrimination will also be abolished and there is going to be one single religion.
TOM HENEGHAN: We’ll get to Jesus in a moment. Before that, though, can you say if you have Saudi backing?
ADNAN OKTAR: It would be wonderful if there were such backing. But unfortunately we don’t have any offers of such kind until now. We would welcome those offers. I think the Gulf and other Islamic countries do not quite appreciate the importance of these ideas. I think the Western world has come to understand that these ideas are very important. If the Islamic countries would also appreciate and think the same, I think they would be supporting us. You may say they don’t quite appreciate that Darwinism is a threat. They are defending themselves by the following arguments. One idea they have is that Darwinism is an old theory that has lost its influence so there is no need to fight Darwinism. The second idea is that Darwinism is compatible with Islam. In fact these are passive defence mechanisms. This is human psychology. When you are not strong enough to do something against something, you just make excuses for not doing so. But we didn’t do that, we created very strong evidence against Darwinism and we destroyed Darwinism.
TOM HENEGHAN: Are you the biggest publisher in the Muslim world?
ADNAN OKTAR: I don’t know. I think we have to investigate that.
TOM HENEGHAN: I don’t know where to ask
ADNAN OKTAR: But it seems so. Technically it seems so. My books have the highest number of sales. Also from the internet my books have been downloaded 10 million times in one year. No publishing house could achieve that.
TOM HENEGHAN: Why do you distribute books for free if you need sales to finance the business?
ADNAN OKTAR: The sales of hard copies are enough.
TOM HENEGHAN: But what is the purpose? Is it just to get your religious message out?
ADNAN OKTAR: I would like the world to be introduced to brotherhood. I want wars and terrorism to come to an end. I want everybody to know the love of Allah and be united under one religion and live in brotherhood.
TOM HENEGHAN: How many people work for you here?
ADNAN OKTAR: There are 20 assistants who help me. The translators aren’t included in this number. But most of the translators work on a voluntary basis.
TOM HENEGHAN: Now let’s get to Jesus. Why do you talk about him? When is he coming?
ADNAN OKTAR: When you take the hadith and the verses of the Koran, we understand that Jesus is going to be coming. When we analyse this from a technical point of view and look at the words of the prophet Mohammad, we understand this is going to be in the next 20 to 25 years. When he comes, first he will not know that he is Jesus. He is going to be discovered by religious Christians who have some beliefs in parallel with Islam. Then Jesus is going to learn all the different religions including Islam and he will read the Koran. He will unite these religions into one religion. He’s going to unite Christianity into Islam. When he came the first time, he reinterpreted Judaism into the Bible. When he comes this time, he will reinterpret the Bible according to the Koran and take it as a reference. We believe that he will be born in a small group and he is going to meet the Dajjal (anti-Christ). By showing miracles, he is going to beat him.
TOM HENEGHAN: Which Christian group will he be born into?
ADNAN OKTAR: We are not sure about it. Maybe it is just beginning to form.
TOM HENEGHAN: What will be the holy scripture when Jesus comes?
ADNAN OKTAR: When Jesus comes, he will take the Koran as a reference. As you know, the Bible is a book very close to the Koran. So in a way he will also be taking the Bible as a reference.
TOM HENEGHAN: But the Koran will be the one holy book for all these believers?
ADNAN OKTAR: Yes.
TOM HENEGHAN: Does that mean Jesus becomes a Muslim?
ADNAN OKTAR: Yes. In fact he is a Muslim. Prophet Abraham and Moses were also Muslims. All these are Islamic religions. All Islamic religions are the same.
TOM HENEGHAN: When Jesus comes, do you expect the Mahdi to come too?
ADNAN OKTAR: Yes.
TOM HENEGHAN: Who will it be?
ADNAN OKTAR: We don’t know who the Mahdi is, whether he has come or not. He also cannot claim ‘I am the Mahdi,’ as far as we know. When the Mahdi comes, he is going to behave in parallel to Jesus Christ. We know the Mahdi will be from the descendents of the Prophet Abraham, just like Jesus. This will be the last period of the world, when Islamic ethical values will govern the world. This is going to be also a reflection of the domination of the descendents of the Prophet Abraham. There will be no Jews or Christians who don’t believe in Jesus Christ, because of the miracles that he will perform. We understand this from the Koran. The Koran says the following: the people who believe in you will be victors until doomsday. This is said about Jesus.
TOM HENEGHAN: People say you think you are the Mahdi.
ADNAN OKTAR: There are some two hundred indicators of the Mahdi. I do not make a claim. I have written a book. Some people, because of the parallels with the hadith of the Prophet Mohammad, have thought that I could be him. But this is not my claim. I am also one of the descendents of the prophet Mohammad. I am known to be a person called Sayyid. Because of the parallels with words of Prophet Mohammad, some people may have thought (that I am the Mahdi). But in Islam, I cannot make such a claim. It is forbidden for me to make such a claim. It would mean that I would be an innocent person without sin. To make such a claim would be wrong according to Islam. The Mahdi will have only undeniable evidence (that he is the Mahdi). When the Mahdi comes, he will work in parallel with Jesus. This will be a time when Islam governs the world. When that happens, he will be the leader of the Islamic world. We will say that maybe this person is the Mahdi. But other than that, we cannot make any final conclusion and I cannot make such a claim.
TOM HENEGHAN: Maybe your supporters do so because they think this?
ADNAN OKTAR: I am a sincere Muslim. Because of my attitude, comprehension, love and respect to people around me, these people are supporting me. They cannot say I am the Mahdi. This would also be in conflict with their Islamic religion. It would mean I don’t need to be tested. I would be innocent. This is wrong to claim so. Of course everybody can suspect that when you have a good person in front of you, that is a very good person and that person is going to heaven probably. You can think about it and have the suspicion he might be the Mahdi. But you cannot have the final diagnosis that he is the Mahdi. That is wrong according to Islam.
TOM HENEGHAN: In your pseudonym, which John in the Bible does Yahya refer to?
ADNAN OKTAR: It’s John the Baptist, who gave the news of Jesus.
TOM HENEGHAN: Why did you choose this?
ADNAN OKTAR: Harun was the assistant of the Prophet Moses. Yahya was also the assistant of Jesus Christ. When Jesus comes to the world, we also would like to be helping him. This would be a big honour to us. You might say this is a prayer for that.
TOM HENEGHAN: Why do you publish so many children’s books?
ADNAN OKTAR: For children it’s very important to have the love of Allah. It’s a big pleasure for them that Allah exists and heaven exists and they will be living for eternity. I would like to give this great message to the children.
TOM HENEGHAN: How do you work?
ADNAN OKTAR: As I said, I have 20 assistants. When I’m about to write a book, I ask for all the information and they gather all the information for me. That’s why it’s very easy for me to write a book. I just do the interpretation, I add the pictures, I send it to the editor and I don’t do anything afterwards. Most of these books have quotes in them or they’re a collection of other books. That’s why it’s very easy and fast for me to be so prolific.
TOM HENEGHAN: What’s your next big project?
ADNAN OKTAR: I have more than 250 books now, more near 260. I am preparing a book about skulls. I am showing skulls which are fossils as evidence there was no evolution. So I continue to produce Islamic books.
TOM HENEGHAN: But not another Atlas of Creation? No further campaign?
ADNAN OKTAR: Our biggest project right now is to lay the grounds for the coming of Jesus Christ, to just prepare the background of this. When he comes, he’s going to have extraordinary power and perform phenomenal miracles. Islam will spread rapidly through the world. The miracles he will show will be undeniable, including to the anti-Christ.
TOM HENEGHAN: So all of this is the buildup for his second coming?
ADNAN OKTAR: That’s correct.
TOM HENEGHAN: Can you summarise your overall philosophy in a few words?
ADNAN OKTAR: When you look at the Bible, the Pentateuch and the Koran, you see the message they give is very simple and easy. They want happiness for all people. They want people to be sincere and love one another. They want everyone to live in peace in heaven until eternity. We also have this basic philosophy. We don’t want any violence, any anarchy in the world/ we want people to live in peace and happiness in the world.
TOM HENEGHAN: Where does the Atlas fit into that?
ADNAN OKTAR: Satan has deceived people by Darwinism. In fact, nothing can be a product of coincidence, not you, not me, not an orange, not an apple, not Albert Einstein. This is just a deception of Satan. We are just preparing the background for this belief. For example, right now I am forming a 3d image of you in my brain which is much more perfect than the best television in the world. You know how many people are working in the production of television. This cannot be a coincidence. Some power must have created this. It is so obvious, but Darwinism was spread under the deception of Satan. Darwin has mentioned many intermediary fossils but none of these fossils have been discovered. We have presented as evidence of about 100 million living fossils as evidence of creationism. This also proves that the ideas of Darwin are invalid. When you look at a protein, it is impossible to produce a protein by coincidence, technically and scientifically. This also proves how false these ideas of Darwinism are. Even ten fossils in my book are sufficient for refuting Darwinism. When you look at hundreds of pictures in my book, this is nothing compared to all the fossils that have been discovered. So we understand that Darwinism has come to an end.