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The Miracle & Challenge of the Quran - II

Wednesday 07/07/2010

As mentioned previously, Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), lived among tribes of people who were for the most part illiterate, and he himself was also illiterate. These people would live extremely simple lives. Some were traders and businessmen, others were farmers, and yet others were nomadic sheep-herders who traveled from place to place depending on where they could find grass for their sheep to graze.  


When Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), brought them the Quran, the believers found in the Quran the command to go out, seek knowledge, and confirm the presence of their Creator by studying His creation. Muslims began to fulfill this command of the Quran and this resulted in one of the greatest explosions of scientific advancement mankind has ever seen. All of this was going on during a period that the West calls the Dark Ages, wherein the scientists of the West were being persecuted and killed as sorcerers and wizards. During this period, Muslims scholars introduced into the world such things as: 


·         Mathematical evolution of spherical mirrors


·         Rectilinear motion of light and use of lenses


·         Refraction angle variations


·         Magnifying effects of the plano-convex lens


·         The concept of the elliptical shape of cosmological bodies


·         The study of the center of gravity as applied to balance


·         Measurement of specific weights of bodies


·         Rule of algebraic equations


·         Solutions to quadratic and cubic equations


·         Work on square roots, squares, theory of numbers, solution of the fractions


·         Solutions of equations of cubic order


·         Writing on conic geometry elaborating the solution of algebraic equations


·         Determining the Trinomial Equation


·         Avicenna's " Canon of Medicine, " and he is known as the Prince of Physicians in the West


·         Writing the first description of several drugs and diseases such as meningitis


·         Treatment of physiological shocks


·         Expertise in psychosomatic medicine and psychology


·         Al-Bayruni mentioned fifty six manuscripts on pharmacology


·         Credited for identifying small pox and its treatment


·         Using alcohol as an antiseptic


·         Using mercury as a purgative for the first time


·         Being the first to describe the blood-circulatory system


·         " Holy Abbas " was, after Rhazes, the most outstanding Physician. His works were authoritative till the works of ibn Sina appeared


·         Writings on Cosmology, Astrology, and the science of numbers and letters


·         Proving that the earth is smaller than the sun but larger than the moon


·         Being the highest authorities on Chemistry for many Centuries


·         Classifying metals into three classifications


·         Laying the basis of the Acid Base theory


·         Distillation, calcination, crystallization, and the discovery of many acids


·         The cultivation of Gold, which is a continuation of Jabir's work


·         The theory of Oscillatory motion of equinoxes


·         Addition of ninth sphere to the eight Ptolematic astronomy


·         Discovering the increase of the suns apogee


·         Defining gravitational force


·         Being responsible for the discovery motion of the solar apsides


·         Writing on the Science of Stars


·         Determination of latitudes and longitudes


·         Determination of geodetic measurements


·         Describing the motion of the planets


·         Solving the problems of spherical trigonometry


·         Being the first to study the isometric oscillatory motion of the pendulum


·         Inventing the "Sahifah" instrument


·         Being responsible for the proof of the motion of the apogee of the sun with respect to the fixed stars


·         Being authorities on the theory of the system of homocentric spheres


·         Preparing a calendar that was more accurate than the Gregorian one in use today


·         And much, much more.


All of this began with a single unlettered Arab from the desert fourteen hundred years ago. The book that was brought into the world by such a man cries out to be studied from a scientific aspect. We will now give you a glimpse of the results.


 {So ask the People of Knowledge if you do not know .} [Quran 21:7]


Example Number 1, Embryology:


Dr. Keith L. Moore is a Professor of Anatomy and Cell Biology at the University of Toronto, Canada. He is a world renowned scientist and a distinguished researcher in the fields of anatomy and embryology; he has published more than 150 research articles, chapters and books in this field. He is the author of several medical textbooks, such as the widely used and acclaimed The Developing Human: Clinically oriented Embryology (now in it's fifth edition, and translated into eight different languages); Before We Are Born, and Clinically Oriented Anatomy. He has also recently co-authored The Quran and Modern Science, Correlation Studies. Dr. Moore is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including, in 1984, the J.C.B. Grant Award, which is the highest honor granted by the Canadian Association of Anatomists. He has served in many academic and administrative positions, including the President of the Canadian Association of Anatomists, 1968-1970. Let us see what Dr. Moore's opinion is on the scientific statements regarding embryology to be found in the Quran:


Dr. Moore was contacted by a Muslim scholar by the name of Abdul-Majeed Az-Zindani. He was asked to participate in a three-year study of around twenty-five verses of the Quran and the Sunnah (Prophetic traditions) which speak about embryology, and to determine the their correspondence to modern scientific discoveries. Dr. Moore's conclusion regarding this matter was,


For the past three years, I have worked with the Embryology Committee of King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, helping them to understand the many statements in the Quran and the Sunnah referring to human reproduction and prenatal development. At first I was astonished by the accuracy of the statements that were recorded in the seventh century AD, before the science of embryology was established. Although I was aware of the glorious history of Muslim scientists in the 10th century AD, and of some of their contributions to Medicine, I knew nothing about the religious facts and beliefs contained in the Quran and Sunnah. It is important for Islamic and other students to understand the meaning of these Quranic statements about human development, based on current scientific knowledge. The interpretations of the verses in the Quran and the Sunnah, translated by Shaikh Az-Zindani, are to the best of my knowledge accurate.  [From the forward of The Developing Human: Clinically oriented Embryology, third edition, by Dr. Keith L. Moore]


The Quran and the Sunnah of the prophet Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), provide a very detailed description of the microscopic development of the human embryo from a mere sperm drop up to the stage of a completely formed human being. It is well known that microscopes were not developed until the sixteenth century AD, and even at that were very crude in design. Zacharias Janssen is credited with having invented the compound microscope in about 1590. With it, remarkable scientific discoveries were made in the 17th and 18th centuries. The Dutch naturalist Anthony van Leeuwenhoek produced lenses powerful enough to prove that many tiny creatures are not spontaneously generated but come from eggs.


Before this period, theories on human reproduction ran rampant. Some scientists believed that the menstrual blood itself developed into the fetus. Later on, a new theory was developed wherein the sperm drop was popularly believed to contain a completely developed miniature human (homunculus) which later grew to the size of a baby. The science of embryology as we know it today did not discover many of the detailed aspects of human development which are taken for granted today until only about twenty years ago, or 1973 to be precise.


Now we must ask the question: where did Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), get such detailed knowledge of the microscopic development of the human embryo in the 6th century AD without a microscope, technical training, a laboratory of any kind, or even the ability to write his own name? The only logical conclusion is that it came from exactly where he claimed it did. From the one who created mankind, God Almighty.


Prof. Moore has since given numerous lectures on the topic of embryology in the Quran. He is quoted in one of these lectures as saying, "It is clear to me that these statements must have come to Muhammad from God, or Allah, because most of this knowledge was not discovered until many centuries later. This proves to me that Muhammad must have been a messenger of God, or Allah."


Prof. Moore was so impressed with the Quranic classification of the stages of development of the human embryo, that he suggested the adoption of the Quranic system in place of the system currently in use by scientists today. Prof. Moore said,


"Because the staging of the human embryo is complex owing to the continuous process of change during development. It is therefore suggested that a new system of classification could be developed using the terms mentioned in the Quran and the Sunnah. The proposed system is simple, comprehensive, and conforms with present embryological knowledge."


When Dr. Moore first presented his findings in Toronto it caused quite a stir throughout Canada. It was on the front pages of some of the newspapers across Canada. One newspaper reporter asked Professor Moore,


"Don't you think that maybe the Arabs might have known about these things - the description of the embryo, its appearance and how it changes and grows? Maybe there were not scientists, but maybe they did some crude dissections on their own - carved up people and examined these things."


Professor Moore immediately pointed out to him, however, that he had missed a very important point. All of the slides of the embryo that Dr. Moore had based his study upon had come from pictures taken through a microscope. He said,


"It does not matter if someone had tried to discover embryology fourteen centuries ago, they could not have seen it!" Dr. Moore added, "Maybe fourteen centuries ago someone secretly had a microscope and did this research, making no mistakes anywhere. Then he somehow taught Muhammad and convinced him to put this information in his book. Then he destroyed his equipment and kept it a secret forever? Do you believe that? You really should not unless you bring some proof because it is such a ridiculous theory." When he was asked "How do you explain this information in the Quran?" Dr. Moore's reply was, "It could only have been divinely revealed." 

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