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Islam and Science (31 May 2017 NewAgeIslam.Com)

Science and Holy Quran

By Dr Ghayur Ayub

May 31, 2017

SO far, we have looked at the Quranic knowledge about evolutionary path of life on earth which led to the creation of plants, animals and humans. Keeping that knowledge in mind, from here on, we will concentrate on human and talk about his embryological growth in uterus and anthropological development on earth. On embryological growth Quran says, “We placed it as a Nutfah (fertilized egg) in a safe (deep) lodging; Then, We created the Nutfah into an Alaqa. Then, We created the Alaqa into Muzgha. Then, We created the Muzghah into bones. Then, We clothed the bones with flesh. Then, We produced it (the human being) as another creation. So blessed be Allah, the Best of creators! (23:12-14)

‘Nutfah’ is an Arabic word used for fertilized egg or zygote which is referred to as ‘Alaqa’ meaning by a leech that sticks to the womb wall and sucks nutrients like a leech. While, Muzgha means a tiny chewed lump imitating the earliest form of embryological development known only to the embryologists. This type of medical knowledge about developmental stages of a foetus in the uterus has only come to light in recent decades while it was written in the Quran about 1500 years ago. Does it mean the Quran is a book of science? No, it’s not, it is a book of signs for those who want to know and understand it. Now, let’s see what Quran says about the complex phases of human anthropological development. For example, it says: “It is He Who created (Khalaqa) you, then fashioned (Sawwaka) you perfectly, and then made you with the right proportions (Adalaka) in whatever form (such as straightened you up, to walk in an upright position) He willed, He put you together (Rakkaba) (assembled you)”(82:7-8

Quran has used four terms in relation to the anthropological stages of human development. They are; 1) ‘Khalaqa’ pointing at the stage of initial creation; 2) ‘Sawwaka’ pointing at the stage of fashioning from one form to another such as from unicellular to multi-cellular; 3) ‘Adalaka’ pointing at the right proportioning and balancing from one stage to another, such as hominid walking upright and straight; 4) Rakkaba pointing at the stage of putting together or assembling as human anthropological development carried on. These were the evolutionary stages human went through. The question is whether these changes occurred all at once, or at lengths of time? Quran answers this question by saying, “Allah is He Who perfected everything which He created and began (Bada’a) the creation of man from clay (32:7). Quran uses the word ‘began’ or ‘Bada’a’ which means that human creation happened as part of a process in time that had a beginning and not just at once. To make this point clearer Quran prefixes the anthropological stages mentioned in verses 82:7-8 with ‘Then’ (Fa) thus separating each stage in time scale.

Talking further about human creation in terms of time, Quran tells us; “He is, Who has created you (human) from clay, then he spent a term of time (away from you), and (it is) a specific term he determined. Yet, you doubt (his ability)!” (6:2) Thus, the word ‘Then’ (Fa) prefixed to each stage represents a period of time between the stages. The question is what were the durations of time-periods between those stages? Being a divine book, the Quran talks in cosmic time which is different from how we perceive time. That is why, in places, it uses the term Kun Fia Kun which in scientific terminology is a time-space Warf, where time and space and the physical laws which govern them lose their existence. While at other places, it says, “Every day with your Lord is as 1,000 years of what you reckon,” (22:47) or, “Every day with your Lord is 50,000 human years” (70:4). So, the time varies from position to position and place to place. Sometimes Quran talks about time in context of quantum physics and at other times in context of convention physics and that too in relation to space and earth. Thus, in cosmic scale, the time could extend to millennial years or a blink of an eye depending on whether it is talking in the language of convention physics or in quantum physics.

It is in this context the term ‘Then’ in between the anthological stages should be taken. In other words, we can say that millennial years passed for human to pass through the stages of fashioning, right proportioning, balancing, putting together and assembling at the end of which he stood upright, used his mental acumen and became a thinking man. Ibn Kathir explained this verse by saying that God created humans in the best image and right proportion and made them walk in a balanced way in an upright position, between the two cold places such as North and South Poles. He further explained the Arabic word ‘Rakkaba’ by saying that the fertilized egg carries all the genetic characteristics of humans all the way from the first creation. He was obviously referring to the Quranic verse which says:..“Were We then fatigued with the first creation? Yet are they in doubt with regard to a new creation” (50:15).


Dr Ghayur Ayub is senior columnist based in London.

Source: pakobserver.net/science-holy-quran/

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islam-and-science/dr-ghayur-ayub/science-and-holy-quran/d/111357


  • Hats Off says "mr. naseer ahmed's latest fad is the strawman"

    It is Hats Off in his comments and Professor Naim in his recent comment who have employed straw man arguments. It is their staple and their fad and the staple of all illogical people.

    I have merely pointed out their straw man arguments. Hats Off apparently cannot even make a distinction between the one who employs straw man arguments and the one who exposes them. He is pathetic in his ignorance!

    By Naseer Ahmed - 6/3/2017 12:00:55 AM

  • mr. naseer ahmed's latest fad is the strawman.

    no wonder. most of his illogical theories depend upon re-writing dictionaries, twisting, turning and squirming around to support all the barbaric recommendations of the text to justify sex slavery, jizya, caravan raids and now particle physics and "convention physics". or market research in search of divinity.

    IIT are overestimated. we have the parrikars, the naseer ahmeds and other alumni making fools of themselves in defense of some doubtful text that is leading its followerrs into bombing blasting and taking sex slaves from yazidis and the white girls of rotherham.

    By hats off! - 6/2/2017 9:53:54 AM

  • Dear Naseer Sahab,

    Thank You so much for telling Prof. Naim that he is not dealing with a bunch of fools or his 'yes-sir' type students on this forum that he will make sweeping remarks berating - if not insulting them though they are presenting some facts about the Qur'an and not dismissing the modern scientific knowledge in anyway. I am at times so unapologetic while defending the Qur'an to the extent of sounding blunt and could offend a professor emeritus some ten years older and far more accomplished than me in academic achievement. In the past on at least two occasions I have written long write-ups for him to clarify his misgiving - but he seems to take me for a duffer [or God knows what] and does not bother even to respond in a line. So I thought about you defending the faith and responding to his ill-conceived broadside and you came up to my expectation. Thank you.

    By muhammd yunus - 6/2/2017 3:21:45 AM

  • Quran mentions that Allah is all powerful.  The following is the extract:
    (سورة النساء, An-Nisaa, Chapter #4, Verse #158)-Mohsin Khan translation:
    ‘But allah raised him ['Îsa (Jesus)] up (with his body and soul) unto Himself (and he عليه السلام is in the heavens). And allah is Ever All-powerful, All-Wise.’
    Allah knows our mind whether we tell the truth or lie.  The following is the extract:
    (سورة البقرة, Al-Baqara, Chapter #2, Verse #235)-Mohsin Khan translation:
    “And there is no sin on you if you make a hint of betrothal or conceal it in yourself, Allah knows that you will remember them, but do not make a promise of contract with them in secret except that you speak an honourable saying according to the Islamic law. And do not consummate the marriage until the term prescribed is fulfilled. And know that Allah knows what is in your minds, so fear Him. And know that Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Forbearing.”
    As the phrase, Allah knows what is in your minds, is mentioned in Quran 2:235, it implies that there is nothing secret that human beings could hide from Allah since Allah knows what they think.
    Allah could influence the mind of people.  The following is the extract:
    (سورة البقرة, Al-Baqara, Chapter #2, Verse #10)-Mohsin Khan translation:
    ‘In their hearts is a disease (of doubt and hypocrisy) and allah has increased their disease. A painful torment is theirs because they used to tell lies.’
    Allah has the power to transform human beings into monkey and swine.  The following is the extract:
    (سورة المائدة, Al-Maaida, Chapter #5, Verse #60)-Mohsin Khan translation:
    ‘Say (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم to the people of the Scripture): "Shall I inform you of something worse than that, regarding the recompense from Allah: those (Jews) who incurred the Curse of Allah and His Wrath, and those of whom (some) He transformed into monkey and swines, and those who worshipped Taghut (false deities); such are worse in rank (on the Day of Resurrection in the Hell-fire), and far more astray from the Right Path (in the life of this world)."
    As the phrase, those (Jews), is mentioned in Quran 5:60 with the phrase, the curse of Allah, it condemns those Jews who believe in Allah and yet do evil deeds that would cause the curse of Allah and His Wrath to be upon them.  The phrase, transformed into monkey and swines, in Quran 5:60 implies that Allah is powerful that Allah could transformed human beings into curse of Allah, such as, monkey and swines.
    Allah could be located everywhere since Quran 2:115 mentions that there is the face of allah wherever you turn your face.  The following is the extract:
    البقرة, Al-Baqara, Chapter #2, Verse #115)-Mohsin Khan translation:
    ‘And to allah belong the east and the west, so wherever you turn (yourselves or your faces) there is the Face of allah (and He is High above, over His Throne). Surely! allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knowing.’
    As the phrase, wherever you turn (yourselves or your faces) there is the Face of allah, is mentioned in Quran 2:115, it implies that allah could be located everywhere wherever we turn.  Using our mind, it is hard to imagine, but have to believe so.
    Allah has the power to control human beings.  The following is the extract:
    (سورة البقرة, Al-Baqara, Chapter #2, Verse #148)-Moshin Khan translation:
    ‘For every nation there is a direction to which they face (in their prayers). So hasten towards all that is good. Wheresoever you may be, allah will bring you together (on the Day of Resurrection). Truly, allah is Able to do all things.’
    As Allah is powerful, how do you know Allah could be so powerful that Allah could create the earth and the heaven within six days instead of to be stretched it to billion years?  If that could be so, the earth and the heaven could be formed within six days.  It is hard to argue whether it is true or false since nothing does exist in the beginning to witness the formation of the universe.  Everything in science might just be guessing.  Scientists might use advanced technology to determine the age of the earth.  How accurately is it?  Nobody knows since nobody does exist in the beginning to witness its formation.  Or, science might be true and there might be a possibility that it really takes years for creation.  The day as mentioned in Quran might mean billion years. 
    The best is to leave everything to Allah and just believe what it says is correct and that is the world is created within 6 days.  We do not know how it should be so.  Only Allah knows since Allah is the only one that has witnessed the formation of the universe.
    By zuma - 6/2/2017 2:44:29 AM

  • Professor Naim’s rant is typical of a Muslim with an inferiority complex about his religion and especially the Quran. His comment contains several strawman arguments.

    “God told all of Physics in the Quran 1400 years ago.”

    Strawman argument. The author has not said this.

    “ The Muslim ignored it; the non-Muslim struggled on their own and discovered it; so now is the time for the Muslims to take credit in the name of God and go on living the way they do.”

    This is beside the point. Irrespective of who discovered it, the Muslims are discovering new insights into their Book helped by secular knowledge and are discussing the same.

    “ Who are we fooling? Ourselves. Who are we discouraging? Our own children.”

    No we are not. We are not telling our children that they should not pursue science or that all of knowledge can be found in the Quran.

    “Ayub and his kind can make greater contribution to Islam by using the science they see in the Quran and make some new and essential contribution to human life on earth.”

    This is again beside the point. The author is also making a contribution by discussing verses that were not understood well because what these say went against what people knew and believed.

     “Of course, in such people's thinking, nothing scientific happened before Islam or among the people across the world who had not even heard of Abraham.”

    Another straw man argument because the author does not say that nor do Muslims believe in such nonsense.


    By Naseer Ahmed - 6/1/2017 11:25:00 PM

  • Here we go again, for the umpteenth time. God told all of Physics in the Quran 1400 years ago. The Muslim ignored it; the non-Muslim struggled on their own and discovered it; so now is the time for the Muslims to take credit in the name of God and go on living the way they do. Who are we fooling? Ourselves. Who are we discouraging? Our own children. Ayub and his kind can make greater contribution to Islam by using the science they see in the Quran and make some new and essential contribution to human life on earth. Of course, in such people's thinking, nothing scientific happened before Islam or among the people across the world who had not even heard of Abraham.
    By C M Naim - 6/1/2017 6:02:18 AM

  • (76:1) Has there not been over Man a long period of Time, when he was nothing - (not even) mentioned?

    The verse here refers to a very long period of time when man led an uneventful primitive existence not even worthy of mention. 

    The Quran mentions quite a few facts about our Universe and our existence about which we already knew or about which we were still to discover.

    As we progress in our knowledge, many of the verses which were poorly understood in the past will be better understood. It is good to discuss these to improve our understanding. 

    By Naseer Ahmed - 6/1/2017 2:51:34 AM

  • Thoughts such as these are a necessary input in our understanding of Islam.
    After all, we are required to use our own minds.
    The problem in Islam has always been with the religious professionals, who claim to know everything.

    By Asif Merchant - 5/31/2017 11:41:47 PM

  • I fully agree with Gholam Muhhiuddin Sahab!

    We do not need to prove the divinity of the Qur'an by selectively citing verses of the Qur'an which explain some of the mysterious phenomenon of nature in line with modern scientific findings. I am not refuting the claims made by the author, but I must add that the Qur'anic glimpses on the diverse facets of creation from embryonic development in a woman’s uterus, communities of ants, flight of birds to natural phenomenon, and cosmological wonders are meant to demonstrate the creative power of God, rather than transmitting any scientific or technical knowledge.

    I wonder why the author did not cite Maurice Buccail, 'a renowned French  medical doctor, member of the French Society of Egyptology, and an author, who was the first to establish the scientific underpinning of the following enigmatic verses:

    “Surely We created man from an extract of clay (tin, inorganic matter) (23:12). We then placed him as a drop (of semen) in a secured resting place (13). We then transformed the drop into a clot and We transformed the clot into a chewed (lump of) flesh, and We transformed this chewed (lump of) flesh into bones, and We clothed the bones with flesh, and then We produced another creature from it. So blessed be God, the Best of Creators” (23:14).

    “O people, if you are in doubt about the Resurrection, (consider) that We created you from dust (turab), then from a drop (of semen), then from a clot, then from a chewed (lump of) flesh, formed and unformed, that We may manifest (Our Power) to you; and We keep those We wish in the wombs for a determined term, then We bring you out as babies and then you (grow and) reach your prime. Some of you die (early) and some of you will be kept back until the feeblest age, so that they know nothing after having known (much); and (further), you see the earth barren and lifeless, but when We send down water on it, it is stirred (to life), it swells, and it puts forth every kind of beautiful species” (22:5)

    By muhammd yunus - 5/31/2017 7:47:16 PM

  • Such affirmations of Islam are not necessary. They become easy targets for rabid Islam bashers such as Hats Off.

    By Ghulam Mohiyuddin - 5/31/2017 12:25:56 PM

  • apparently "convention physics" is the latest fad in halaal sciences.

    dr. ghayur ayub is indeed the greatest scientist invented by islam.

    By hats off! - 5/31/2017 4:41:21 AM

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