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Quran and Modern Science: A Comparative Study -By Tahira Islam

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From the beginning of human life on this planet, it has been a quest for mankind to seek out the truth about the purpose of life and nature itself. In its search for truth, mankind has invented and developed various means to navigate through the vast knowledge that the universe holds to learn the mysteries of the creation. Amongst all the information the holy Quran provided fourteen hundred years ago, it also provided impeccable scientific facts and information that the mankind had no knowledge about. As science developed and scientific discoveries are established, the facts stated by the holy Quran remain solid proving yet again of its diving origin.

1.

The Big Bang theory explains what happened at the very beginning of our universe. Discoveries in astronomy and physics have shown beyond a reasonable doubt that our universe did in fact have a beginning. According to the theory, our universe sprang into existence as “singularity” around 13.7 billion years ago. All the matter in the universe came into existence from one single extremely hot and dense point; that exploded and brought about the beginning of the universe.

The Quran mentions:

“Have those who disbelieved not considered that the heavens and the earth were a joined entity, then We separated them, and made from water every living thing?  Then will they not believe?” (Quran 21:30)

From the above verse, we can see that the heavens and earth were once one, and then Allah caused them to separate and form the universe. The Holy Quran revealed the truth about the origin of universe fourteen hundred years ago that corresponds to the findings of the modern science and scientific assumptions.

earth2.

In 1916, Albert Einstein formulated his General Theory of Relativity that indicated that the universe must be either expanding or contracting.  Confirmation of the expanding-universe theory finally came in 1929 in the hands of the American astronomer Edwin Hubble. The Quran stated that the universe is expanding fourteen hundred years ago:

“And the heaven We created with might, and indeed We are (its) expander.” (Quran 51:47).

3.

The earth is not round like a ball, it is geo spherical i.e. flattened at the poles. In earlier days when people believed the earth to be flat, the Quran explained the spherical shape of the earth.

 “And the earth, moreover, Hath He made egg shaped.” (Quran 79:30)

In 1957, Sir Francis Drake was the first person to prove the earth is spherical when he sailed around it. Also the spherical shape of the earth can be explained by the alteration of night and day. If earth were flat, there would have been a sudden change from day to night and from night to day. By considering the Quranic verse:

“Do they not see that Allah merges night into day and He merges day into night?”

It means the day gradually changes into night and the night gradually changes into day.

4.

There has been controversy between the church and modern astronomy. The Bible teaches that the earth is the center of the universe and the earth stands still. Copernicus (1473-1543) enraged the Church by writing that the Earth might orbit the Sun. In 1609, the German scientist Keppler published the ‘Astronomia Nova’ where he concluded that not only do the planets move in elliptical orbits around the sun, they also rotate upon their own axes. Consider the following Quranic verses:

“It is He Who created The Night and the Day, And the sun and the moon: All (the celestial bodies) Swim along, each in its Rounded course.” (Quran 21:33)

Also,

“It is not permitted To the Sun to catch up The Moon, nor can The Night outstrip the Day: Each  swims along in (its own) orbit.” (Quran 36:40)

These verses mention an essential fact discovered by modern astronomy i.e the existence of individual orbits of the planets as well as rotation on their own axes.

5.

The formation of rain used to be a great mystery to mankind in earlier times. The invention of weather radar made it possible to discover how rain is formed. The formation of rain takes place in three stages. First, the “raw material” of rain rises up into the air with the wind. Later, clouds are formed, and finally raindrops appear. The Quran mentions:

“It is Allah Who sends the winds which stir up clouds which He spreads about the sky however He wills. He forms them into dark clumps and you see the rain come pouring out from the middle of them. When He makes it fall on those of His servants He wills, they rejoice.” (Quran 30:48)

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Every stage in the formation of rain is related to this verse of the Quran. Furthermore, these stages are explained in exactly the right sequence. Just as with many other natural phenomena on the Earth, Allah gave the most correct explanation of this phenomenon, and made it known in the Quran centuries before it was discovered.

6.

“He sends down mountains from the sky with hail inside them, striking with it anyone He wills and averting it from anyone He wills. The brightness of His lightning almost blinds the sight.” (Quran 24:43)

The verse refers to the formation of hail and lightning. About the formation of hail and lightning, the book Meteorology Today says that a cloud becomes electrified as hail falls through a region in the cloud of supercooled droplets and ice crystals. The hail acquires a negative charge when it falls towards the bottom of the cloud, thus the lower part of the cloud becomes negatively charged. These negative charges are then discharged as lightning.

7.

The very birth of human being used to be a mystery not so long ago. Scientific discoveries about human birth were made mostly in the last century. It has been discovered that man is not created from the entire semen, but only a very small portion of it (sperm).The miracle of human birth has been emphasized in many verses. Allah mentions in the Quran:

“From what thing did He create him? From a drop of sperm He created him and proportioned him. Then He eases the way for him.” (Quran 80:18-20)

Also,

Does man reckon he will be left uncontrolled [without purpose]? Was he not once a drop of ejected semen? (Quran 75:36-37)

8.

The following verse refers to the fact that every living thing is made from water:

“Have those who disbelieved not considered that the heavens and the earth were a joined entity, then We separated them, and made from water every living thing?  Then will they not believe?” (Quran 21:30)

Also,

“And Allah has created every animal from water.” (Quran 24:45)

The cytoplasm, the basic substance of the cell is made up of 80% of water. Modern scientific research has also revealed that most organisms consist of 50% to 90% water and that every living entity requires water for its existence. How was it possible for people to know this fact 14 hundred years ago when science was nonexistent? This yet again proves the holy Quran to have a divine origin.

9.

Modern science has established the fact that one’s identity can be determined from their fingerprints. This is because the shapes and details on everyone’s fingerprint are unique to each individual. Every person who is alive or who has ever lived in this world has a set of unique fingerprints. Allah says in the Quran:

“Yes, We are able to put together in perfect order the very tips of his fingers.” (Quran 75:4)

This should be acknowledged that this feature of fingerprints was only discovered in the late 19th century by Humankind. Before then, people regarded fingerprints as ordinary curves without any specific importance or meaning. However in the Quran, Allah points to the fingertips, whose meaning has not be fully understood then.

These are just a few scientific facts out of the vast miraculous information provided by the Quran. Allah says in the Quran:

“Verily in the heavens and the earth, there are Signs for those who believe.” (Quran 45:3)

The scientific evidences of Holy Quran clearly prove its divine origin. No human could have produced a book fourteen hundred years ago that could contain profound scientific facts to be discovered by human beings centuries later. Beyond doubt, the Quran is not a scientific book but a book of signs. The signs disclose facts for humans to realize the truth about their existence in this universe and the purpose they are supposed to serve. The Quran accurately predicts the ultimate theory of everything of which the science is sweating to discover.

universe

Further, how much we could have discovered about this universe­—one out of a billion or more? The vast undiscovered part of this universe contains billions of wonders for us. Science is made of human assumptions and experiments and, therefore,  it must suffer the limitations, mistakes and anomalies attributed to human capacity but the Holy Quran is sent by Allah— the Creator and Sustainer of this universe. Science changes its theory and focus with the change of time and discoveries but the Quran always remains as the same. The threshold from where science fails to answer, Holy Quran must have answered it. Hopefully, in future, as science will be rising its peak, many human quests about their existence on the earth will be answered and the Quran will remain the ultimate truth of everything.

To be a believer, one must search for truth. And once truth is realized faith can be established. This faith in turn will uncover more truth thus miraculous nature of the divine Quran will be realized.

Tahira Islam is undergrad student of CSE at the University of Dhaka.