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Q / A
Answering Common Misconceptions
 

13. Knowing God through Science 

 

Question:

What is the relation of science and Islam? Don’t you agree that science is a way to develop human mental level to know God, as His right is? Thank you.

Answer:

Islam, the final eternal message of Allah to humanity, addresses the human intellect in order to be convinced of its genuine truth. To be convincing to ALL people at All times, this FINAL message is based on scientific reasoning that fits the evolving scientific knowledge of all generations. Such a message is the only one fit to be a “universal” message, and the “only one” remaining undistorted as revealed 14 centuries ago. Previous messages, were based on material miracles, witnessed only by a limited group of the respective prophet’s contemporaries. Each of these messages were sent to suit only that particular “nation”, in terms of time or place.  

The essence of Islam is to incite the human brain to think, observe, analyze and reach sound conclusions. The very first words revealed to Muhammad (peace be upon him) carried an instruction to learn: “Read”, as well as a precise reference to a biological concept. Man is created from `alaq, in Arabic: something that clings, referring to the clinging of a sperm to the ovum to start ovulation (or the subsequent clinging of the resulting zygote to the uterine wall). These first few verses end with a reminder of the bounties of Allah in guiding man to knowledge:  

bullet Read: In the Name of your Lord Who created. Created man from `Alaq (what clings, a clot clinging leech-like). Read: And your Lord is the Most Honorable, Who taught by the pen. He taught man what he did not know (English meaning of Qur’an 96: 1-5).

All through the Qur’an, repeated references to scientific notions and facts are the main tools of: 1) motivating the intellect towards 2) sound firm belief and
3) noble values and way of life, for the welfare of the individual and society. 

That the Qur’an is the Word of Allah is self-proven through examining the Qur’an; the notions implied thereof (scientific, historical, psychological, legislative … etc) are far beyond that of any human being, when revealed and for centuries to come. The style, i.e. semantics, rhetoric, grammatical structure, eloquence, and internal music of the Arabic Qur’an is a standing challenge to all humanity and forever:

bullet Then let them come up with a discourse like this (Qur`an), in case they are sincere (English meaning of 52: 34).
bullet Like of this Qur’an, they would not come up with its like, even if they were backers of one another (English meaning of 17: 88).

The Qur’an motivates the intellect through:

1)     Urging to think:

·         So have they not pondered over the Saying, or did there come to them that which did not come up to their earliest fathers? (English meaning of 23: 68).

·         So give good tidings to My bondmen. Who listen to the Saying (and) so closely follow the fairest of it. Those are they whom Allah has guided, and those are the ones endowed with intellects (English meaning of 39: 17-18). 

2)     Arguing with evidence:

·         Is not He (Most Charitable) Who begins creation, (and) thereafter He brings it back again, and Who provides you from the heaven and the earth? Is there a god with Allah? Say, “Offer your proof, in case you are sincere” (English meaning of 27: 64).

·         If there were in both of them gods except Allah, indeed they would (both) suffer corruption. All Extolment be to Allah, The Lord of The Throne, above whatever they describe (English meaning of 21: 22).

·         Will they not contemplate the Qur’an? And if it had been from (any where) other than the Providence of Allah, indeed they would have found in it many difference(s) (English meaning of 4: 82).  

3)     Inviting to reflect on the Creation:

·         Surely in the creation of the heavens and the earth and in the alternation of the night and the daytime there are signs indeed for ones endowed with intellects. The ones who remember Allah, upright and seated on their sides, and meditate upon the creation of the heavens and the earth: “Our Lord, in no way have You created this untruthfully (English  meaning of 3: 190-191).  

4)     And to seek knowledge:

·         He brings (the) Wisdom to whomever He decides; and Whoever is brought (the) Wisdom, then he has been brought much charity; and in no way does anyone constantly remember except those endowed with intellects (English meaning of 2: 269).

·         And in no way did We send (even) before you, except men to Whom We revealed. “So ask the population of the Remembrance, in case you do not know.” (English meaning of 16: 43).

5)     And to respect science and scientists:

·         Say, “Are the ones who know equal to the ones who do not know?” Surely only the ones endowed with intellects would remind themselves (English meaning of 39: 9).

·         … and in no way does anyone know its interpretation except Allah. And the ones firmly established in knowledge say, “We have believed in it; all is from the Providence of our Lord.” And in no way does anyone constantly remember except the ones endowed with intellects (English meaning of 3: 7).

 6)     And to know that the universe is controlled by precise laws:

bullet

Surely We created everything by a determined estimate
(English meaning of  54: 49).

bullet … and He created everything, So He has determined it in an (exact) determination (English meaning of 25: 2).
bullet The sun and the moon (run) to all-precisely reckoned (courses), And the stars and the trees prostrate themselves. And the heaven, He raised it up, and laid down the Balance (English meaning of 55: 5-7).

Qur`an sets fire on all sorts of superstitions:

   1) Auguring:

·         … and in case an odious (thing) afflicted them, they would augur ill by Musa and the one with him. Verily their bird (of augury) is surely only in the Meeting with Allah, but most of them did not know
(English meaning of 7: 131),

     - and the Hadith: “The sun and the moon do not eclipse due to the death
       or birth of anyone. They are two signs of Allah’s, so, pray when you
       see them” (al0Bukhari).

     2) unscientific thinking:

·         And the peots, the misguided closely follow them; have you not seen
that they wander in every valley, and that they say what they do
not perform?(English meaning of 26: 224-226).

     3) baseless claims:

·         He (Hud) said, “Abomination and anger from your Lord have already
befallen you. Do you dispute with me over names you have named, and your fathers, (for) in no way has Allah ever sent down regarding them any all-binding authority? So, await, surely I will be with you among (the ones) awaiting.” (English meaning of 7: 71).

·         And the Jews have said, “Uzayr is the son of Allah. “And the Christians
have said, “Al-Masih (Jesus), is the son of Allah. “That is their saying with their mouths, conforming with the saying of the disbelievers earlier. Allah fights them! However are they diverged (English meaning of
9: 30).

·         And they have taken to themselves gods, apart from Him, that create
nothing and themselves are created and possess for themselves neither harm nor profit; neither do they possess death, nor life, nor uprising (English meaning of 25: 3).

     4) Blindly following of ancestors, leaders and clergy:

bullet Surely they came upon their fathers erring. So they are made to hurry
in their tracks. And indeed before them already erred away most of
the earliest (people) (English meaning of 37: 69-70)
bullet They have taken to themselves as lords, apart from Allah, their doctors  and their monks and Al-Masih (Jesus), the son of Maryam; and in no
way were they commanded to worship (anyone) except One God; there is  no god except He; All Extolment be to Him, (He is) above whatever
they associate (with Him) (English meaning of 9: 31).

Now, the fruit of using the intellect to reach honest sound conclusions is a firm belief in:

* The Presence of Allah, the origin of all existence .

* His Attributes.

* His Bounties on all creatures on this earth.

* Qur`an is the final Word of Allah. 
 

A Muslim having such a clear vision would:

 1)     Know and remember Allah:

·        Surely in the creation of the heavens and the earth and in the alternation of the night and the daytime there are signs indeed for ones endowed with intellects. The ones who remember Allah, upright and seated and on their sides, and meditate upon the creation of the heavens and the earth: “Our Lord, in no way have You created this untruthfully. All Extolment be to You! So protect us from the torment of the Fire! (English meaning of 3: 190-191).

2) Willingly and continuously submit to His doctrine:

bullet And in no way should a male believer or a female believer, when Allah and His Messenger has decreed a Command, have the choice in their Command … (English meaning of 33: 36).

 3) Beware of disobeying Him:

·         Is he who is devoutly (praying) at various times of the night, prostrate and upright, being wary of the Hereafter, and hoping for the mercy of his Lord (the same as the disbeliever)? (English meaning of 39: 9).
4) Be patient and endurant of the difficulties of life

·         you who have believed, seek help in patience and prayer, surely Allah is with the patient. And do not say of whomever are killed in the way of Allah, “(They are) dead.” No indeed, they are alive but you are not aware. And indeed We will definitely try you with something of fear and hunger, and diminution of riches, and selves, and products; and give glad tidings to the patient. Who, when an affliction afflicts them, say, “Surely we belong to Allah, and surely to Him we are turning. Upon those are the prayers from their Lord, and mercy; and those are
they (who) are the right-guided (English meaning of 3: 155-157).

5) Trust and hope in the Hereafter:

bullet So, as for him whose book is brought to him in his right hand, he will then say, “(Now), here you are! Read my book. Surely I expected that I should meet my reckoning.” (English meaning of 69: 19-22).