Monday, September 10, 2012

The Planned Activity of Cells which Gives Shape to The Body: How Does It Happen?

Now the cluster of cells has become an embryo, which means to "teem within." If we could watch the cells during this period, we would encounter much activity. Cells similar to one another divide and multiply at a certain time and some of these cells begin to take on a different structure from the others. This process is not evident at first, but with every passing day, it becomes clear that the purpose of this activity is to bring into being, quickly and according to a program, the functions indispensable for the construction of the human body. All the cells, very much like workers dispatched to a job, go to work in groups. Later, the groups of cells which are to form the same organ join one another to form one mass and prepare to form the organs. As a result of this intense activity, some cells will become bone cells, while others will become skin and muscle cells.28
The bone cells gather at the places where the bones must be. The muscle cells congregate at the places where the muscles must be. Some cells go to even deeper places and begin to form the internal organs. Some form the brain, some the eyes and others the blood vessels. In time, new processes are added; for example, the movement of the cells to their destined places and the construction of some organs by the programmed death of certain cells, etc. In short, in the course of this differentiation, a perfect strategy is employed in which the cells perform their activity according to a definite plan.
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A. Ectoderm
1. Epidermis
2. Brain
3. Glands
4. Keratinous Cell
5. Neuron
6. Spinal Cord
7. Neuron
8. Milk-Secreting Glands
9. Light-Sensing Cells
10. Adrenal Medulla
11. Pigment Cell
B. Mesoderm
12. Cartilage Connective Tissue
13. Gonads
14. Cartilage Tissue Cell
15. Striated Muscle Tissue
16. Adrenal Gland (Cortex)
17. Tubular Cell
18. Heart
19. Lymphatic Tissue
20. Smooth Muscle Tissue
21. Endothelial Cell
22. Red Blood Cell
C. Endoderm
23. Pharynx
24. Thyroid Gland
25. Parathyroid Gland
26. Digestion
27. Lung
28. Thracheal Cell
29. Pancreas
30. Epithelial Cell
31. Endocrine Gland Cell
32. Liver
In the first stages of birth, the cells make exact copies of themselves. If this multiplication were not controlled, a human being would not be formed; rather, a large piece of flesh composed of identical cells would be the result. But such is not the case. Identical stem cells later begin to differentiate. As a result of this differentiation, bones, smooth muscles, epithelium, the liver, the lungs, in short, all the body's cells and tissues are formed. Surely it is the knowledge and incomparable power of God which brings these wondrous transformations in the cells to pass, and ensures the presence of those special elements that make a person a person.
The inspiration as to how this preparation is to be made is introduced separately into every group of cells. The information written in the DNA of every cell is the same. But only when every cell group uses this information in the program which has been placed within the ambit of its own instinct, can they form the special structures needed for the organs to perform their functions. Besides this kind of differentiation, constant division causes their numbers to increase. This perfect organization never falls into anarchy. Because of these preparations made for the formation of the heart, eye, brain, arm, leg and other organs, the body slowly takes shape.29
So far so good, but who gives the command to these cells which all arise out of one single essence? How can cells, which have no intelligence, awareness or feeling, understand this command and put it into effect?
Scientists have determined that the plan which dictates the differentiation of the cells and their lodging in the appropriate place in the body is written in the DNA. But this raises the question: Who wrote this magnificent plan so perfectly in this microscopic information bank hidden in the nucleus of cells?
Furthermore, who causes the cells to read this plan written in the DNA and to apply it without error? How is it that millions of different cells can find the information relevant to themselves in an immense information bank in the DNA and change their structure according to it?
For example, consider the cells which form the eyes: How can they know when the pupil is fully formed? How can they know how to structure the retina, the eye muscles, and the lens and how to give them their appropriate size? And how do they know at what point to stop these processes?
Or, how do cells which have never seen a liver, kidneys or a pancreas know the particularities of these organs and change their structure in accordance with this knowledge?
Moreover, when these cells change their structure according to the organs that they are going to form, they take many factors into consideration. For example, a cell which changes to become a brain cell must take account of the nervous system, the nourishment of the brain, the oxygen supply, the necessity of establishing a connection among all the nerves in the body; it must also distinguish the parts of the brain that see, hear and feel. Other cells take into consideration the possibility that the brain might be damaged and surround it; they evaluate the negative factors that could occur in the birth process and form structure according to these considerations. This is all very well, but how can cells display such "prescience" in their behaviour?
It is God Who created the seven heavens and of the earth the same number, His Command descending through all of them, so that you might know that God has power over all things and that God encompasses all things in His knowledge. (Qur'an, 65: 12)
All these questions show that human birth is a great miracle, and the theory of evolution has at this point reached an impasse. No evolutionist can explain the extraordinary cooperation that occurs among the genes in the DNA as the cells form the organs and give shape to the body. The fact that genes, which we may define as a collection of unconscious atoms, cannot organize by chance such a conscious harmony is so evident that evolutionists generally prefer not to broach this subject at all. Hoimar von Ditfurth, A German evolutionist scientist, has this to say about the miraculous development that happens in the mother's womb:
How a single egg cell divides to form so numerous differentiated cells, and the perfect natural communication and the cooperation between these cells top the events that amaze scientists.30
And G. Flanagan, the author of Beginning Life writes:
How is such far-reaching organization achieved? What makes the cells act as if they know where to go, and what to be, and what to do when they get there? And also act in such harmony with their fellow cells?31
In the answer he has tried to give to these questions, Flanagan is far from being able to explain these wondrous occurrences.
These big questions take us into the world of the almost infinitesimally small molecules within the cells, primarily those that compose the genes and make up the genetic programme. Since the advent of molecular biology, it is for the first time becoming possible to detect and describe some of these processes. "Life's book, it seemed, was suddenly laid open…", although only some fascinating pages of it. We are still far from understanding the whole story.
It is clear that cells work together so well because there is a continual molecular dialogue between them and they adapt their intrinsic genetic instructions accordingly. The instructions are held in the genes in the form of the so-called genetic-code, spelled out in the arrangement of molecules, like letters of a special alphabet. The genetic programme for the baby, spelled out in that code, was achieved on the first day in the union of parent cells. From then on, every time any cell divided and gave rise to two new cells, a precise replica of all the genes was made and passed along to each new cell. Therefore every cell of the body carries exactly the same genes, and holds the full genetic programme.
Every cell might simply go on to produce clones of itself, all with the same destination and function, if the full programme were to be active all the time. What makes for the great variety of cells produced, and for their dispersal to all their different destinations, is the fact that genes can switch on and switch off. Not all of them are operative all the time. This happens in response to signals from fellow cells as they all fit themselves into the elaborate programme of development.

These events may be visualized as an exacting building task requiring close co-operation. Each knows the grand plan, each gives out signals, and in turn sensitively responds to the signals from others to become integrated into the whole project. The cells of the embryo work in a comparable way, in companionable agreement, with genes switched on and off as required.32
As can be understood from the above explanations, the fact that the cells differentiate from one another and take on completely different functions is said to indicate that there is a "genetic program" which causes them to act within a determined plan. It is true that a perfect program is implanted in every cell, but the important thing is this: Who created this program and implanted it in the cells? The program we speak of here is not like an ordinary computer program. By applying this program, the cells bring into being a human person who has within himself millions of interrelated complex organic structures: a person who can hear, see, feel, think, make decisions, experience joy, appreciate beauty and who can study his own cells and DNA, and draw conclusions from his investigations. Moreover, it is certainly a miracle that the masses of protein which we call cells can understand such a program, act according to it, become aware of what is required and complete every stage perfectly.
Cells Shape the Body …
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Richard Dawkins, a well-known modern evolutionist, is at a loss to explain how, in the formation of a human being, the genes which contain the human genetic program act together with such a degree of cooperation.
Embryonic development is controlled by an interlocking web of relationships so complex that we had best not contemplate it.33
Dawkins has understood that the relations among the genes responsible for the miraculous creation of a human being and the extraordinary abilities demonstrated by these genes could not have come about by chance, that it is not possible to account for such a complex system by the mechanisms of evolution, and has thus made such a confession. But he still misses a very important point: In the same way, it is impossible that, in the chain of miracles that produces a baby, not one bit of what is required to make this baby, not one single cell, has come into being by chance. Within a period of nine months, one cell formed in the mother's reproductive organs turns into a seeing, hearing, feeling, breathing, thinking human being, and this transformation occurs according to a plan perfect in its every detail. Moreover, this miracle has gone on continuously with the same perfection for countless numbers of years.
According to the claims of evolutionists, this is all due to chance; for them, this miracle comes about as a result of the decision of unconscious atoms which produce the human cells. They claim that one day, the atoms suddenly decide to come together and produce organs that they had never seen or known before. They cling so blindly to their illogical claims that they believe that each of these unconscious atoms decides which part it will form and goes to the appropriate places according to this decision. They believe that everything happens as a work of chance without intervention; that the cells and the atoms determine by their own wills the best action to take, and perfectly construct a human body. Even if they do not want to accept what is being said here, this is exactly the substance of what they claim.
At this point it is clear in what an enormous logical impasse evolutionists find themselves. Every detail that has been explained up to now and in what will be dealt with later shows that, contrary to the evolutionists' claims, the stages that occur in the formation of a human being cannot have happened by chance. These extraordinary occurrences happened not by the work of cells or the organelles that brought them into being; not by the activity of molecules or atoms, but by the word of Almighty God, "Be":
It is He Who created you from earth, then from a drop of sperm, then from an alaq (embryo), then He brings you infants into the world; you reach manhood, then you decline into old age though some of you may die young so that you may reach a predetermined age and so that hopefully you will grow in wisdom. It is He Who ordains life and death. When He decides on something, He need only say: "Be!" and it is. (Qur'an, 40: 67-68)
Awareness Demonstrated by the Egg Cell
... The cell cluster suppresses its genetic markers and instead gives out special signals that can be compared to a universal password. This password is the same for all people and is the same one that the mother's cells expressed when she herself was just such a cluster. Therefore, her cells do not now mobilize defences against the new arrivals, because they biologically recognize the nesting cluster as universal friend, not foe.34
Attention must be drawn here to a very important point. As Flanagan says, it is a very great mystery how a group of cells sends a "universal message" to another group of cells which receives this message and "understands" that they are meeting not an enemy but a friend. It must be remembered that we are not talking here about a group of human beings, but a mass made up of cells too small to be seen with the naked eye; a mass which has no hands, eyes, ears or brain, composed of unconscious atoms, molecules and proteins. Surely to expect such a demonstration of awareness from cells is extremely illogical.
The truth confronting us is clear: What ensures that the embryo lodges easily in the mother's womb and survives there is the mercy of God, Who created the embryo, the mother and the mother's defensive system.
Truly, God has knowledge of the Hour and sends down abundant rain and knows what is in the womb. And no soul knows what it will earn tomorrow and no soul knows in what land it will die. God is All-Knowing, All-Aware. (Qur'an, 31: 34)

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