Science and the Quran

Many scientific facts and realities are present in the Quran; and this holy scripture has proven not to contradict science. The creations of the embryological features are described vividly in the Quran. A careful comparison of this verse with the actual details of embryological development will reveal no contradictions,

“And indeed We created man out of an extract of clay. Thereafter, We made him as mixed drops of the male and female fluids and lodged him in a safe lodging [womb of the mother]. Then We made the mixed drops into a clot [a piece of thick coagulated blood]. Then We made the clot into a little lump of flesh. Then We made out of that little lump of flesh bones. Then We clothed the bones with flesh. And then We brought it forth as another creation. So blessed be Allah, the best of creators.” (23:12-14)

The creation of life, the earth, and the astronomical universe is also described in a way that parallels modern scientific theory. Many of the Quranic chapters are named after astronomical objects, such as the “Star” [1] and the “Sun.”[2]

In terms of the workings of the universe, we read the following Quranic passage,

“Do not those who disbelieve know that the heavens and the earth were joined together as one united piece, and then We parted them? And We have made from water every living thing. Will they then not believe? And We have placed on the earth firm mountains, lest it should shake with them, and We placed therein-broad highways for them to pass through that they may be guided, and We have made the heaven a roof, safe, and well guarded. Yet they turn away from its signs. And He it is Who has created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon, each in an orbit floating.” (21:30-33)

Yet further instruction is given in the Quran of the mechanisms of the universe,

“By the sun and its brightness, and by the moon as it follows it, and by the day as it shows up in the sun’s brightness, and by the night as it conceals it, and by the heavens and Him who built it, and by the earth and Him who spread it…” (91:1-6)

Although the people during the Prophet’s time knew nothing about the sciences of the sun and stars, the Quran refers to the fact that stars exist for a fixed period of time,

“And the sun runs on its fixed course for a term appointed. That is the decree of the Almighty, the Omniscient. And the moon, We have measured for it mansions to traverse until it returns like the old dried curved date-stalk. It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor does the night outstrip the day. They all float in (their own) orbit.” (36:38)

Human beings are asked to ponder on the creation of the universe and consider their role therein,

“Truly, in the creation of the heavens and the earth, and in the alternation of night and day there are indeed signs for all who are endowed with insight, and who remember Allah standing, sitting, and lying on their sides, and contemplate creation of the heavens and the earth, [saying] ‘O Lord! You have not created all this without purpose! Glory be to You’.” (3:191)

The Quran also poses a rhetorical question and asks,

“Are you more difficult to create or the heavens above?” (79:27)

Even the expansion of the universe is alluded to,

“With power did We construct the heavens; verily, We are able to expand the vastness of space thereof.” (51:47)

The end of this universe is also described,

“And remember the day when We will roll up the heavens like a scroll rolled up for books. As We began the first creation, We shall repeat it. It is a promise binding upon Us. Truly, We shall do it.” (21:104)

Another phase of the end of the world tells us,

“When the sun has wound around and lost its light and has been overthrown, and when the stars shall fall, and when the mountains shall be made to pass away…And when the seas shall become a blazing far or shall overflow.” (81:1-3 & 6)

Such descriptions continue in the Quran,

“When the Heaven is cleft asunder, and when the stars have fallen and scattered, and when the seas have burst forth…” (82:1-3)

This event will come to pass, as the Quran testifies,

“When the Event befalls – and there can be no denying its befalling – it will bring down some, and others it will exalt. When the earth will be shaken with a terrible shaking, and the mountains will be powdered to dust so that they will become floating dust particles.” (56:1-6)

And as for the Earth and its outcome, “And they ask you concerning the mountains. Say, “My Lord will blast them and scatter them as particles of dust; then He shall leave it as a smooth, level plain. You will see therein nothing crooked or curved.” (20:105-107)

[1] An-Najm, chapter 53.
[2] Ash-Shams, chapter 91.

Discovering Islam by Sayed Moustafa Al-Qazwini

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