Scriptures and Science

Quran... and natural sciences?


Scriptures and Science
by Disenchanted

Those who search and often find scientific facts and nuggets in scriptures are not aware of the absurdity of their claims. For the simple reason that these books are ancient and having been written thousands of years ago can not keep up with ever changing of scientific paradigms.

Despite the fact that our phenomenological understanding of nature remains the same (water is always wet, fire burns, sun is bright yellow, etc) our theoretical understanding evolves with time.

To that end, it is shocking to realize that the scientifically established fact and common knowledge that matter is made up of tiny particles called atoms is less than 200 hundred years old. Our knowledge of the fact that our solar system is a part of the Milky Way galaxy is less than hundred years old. So is the fact that those nebulous patches of light in the night sky are but galaxies similar to our own and not other stars belonging to Milky Way.

It’s also less than hundred years that we have discovered DNA molecules and the secret behind the heredity and hundreds upon hundreds of other scientific discoveries.

So how can one claim that scriptures entailed all these scientific facts? Human’s view of nature has been revolutionized through the intervening centuries. Nothing could be farther than our current understanding of nature and the view held by those around the time scriptures were written. For “god” sake we (even Einstein!) thought universe is static up until 90 years ago just to realize it is and has been expanding for billions of years!

So the absurdity becomes clear when you ask which scientific paradigm was presented in the scriptures. If it was consistent with our current theories it must have sounded outlandish to those who lived at the time of revelations! After all they saw the heavens through the eyes of Ptolemy who synthesized and extended Hipparchus's system of epicycles and eccentric circles to explain his geocentric theory of the solar system.” (see

On the other hand if the so called scientific descriptions of scriptures matched the view of its era, it should look absurd and outdated to us. This conundrum is inevitable for those who strive to find a match between relative and ever changing theories of science and the absolute and constant facts of scriptures.

Of course the third alternative (most likely) scenario is that what amounts to scientific digression in scriptures is either limited to phenomenological aspects of nature that remain the same as far as human perception is concerned or that they are expressed in such vague and poetic manner that are subject to interpretations and in the eye of faithful of any era are considered factual and lend credence to the scripture itself! Needless to say anything that affords that flexibility is void of any value especially scientific value. As Scientific theories have to muster the rigors of experimental tests.

So for me to hear that Dr. Mehdi Golshani a respected professor of physics at Sharif University in Tehran recently was awarded a prize for his book: “Quran and natural sciences” came as a surprise. After all you can find much more solid science in a latest issue of “Science magazine” than having to revert to a holy book, scriptures are not meant to be scientific literature.

I gather this much may come to you as obvious. As far as the “facts” of nature are concerned, our understanding is evolving and there is no meaning of having them revealed to us in a holy book. It just ends up in confusion and contradiction as discussed.

But that was the “facts”. What about the "values"? Could we expect that scriptures establish certain “values” (good/bad) once and for all, valid for all times? This is more controversial than the first issue and calls for another assay.


more from Disenchanted

I am not familier with Bahá'u'lláh

by iamfine on

Terry - is he the one that suppose to be the last emam (emam ghayeb)?


Terry you must be kidding !!

by Disenchanted on


    I am sure you meant to humor us. You can't be serious!!

    Knowing well the internal combustion engine was invented well prior to 1872, what you mentioned is more indicative of ignorance of the past as opposed to saying something about future!!

    I guess you just don't get the point of my article.

By the way a prophecy that can't distinguish between tesla coil and Laser is as good as ... (you fill the blanks)!

      It has always been a puzzle for me to figure out how men who clearly could not protect themselves from harm could claim they have supernatural powers and are closely in contact with the creator and rest of good stuff?!! I guess anyone can claim anything. The real question is how others believe that kinda stuff and devote their life to it?!!




Terry McBride

Hate to interrupt your Anti-Religion Diatribe with some facts

by Terry McBride on

sometime after 1872 Bahá'u'lláh another religious leader wrote the following...

ninth leaf
of the Most Exalted Paradise is this: In all matters moderation is desirable. If a thing is carried to excess, it will prove a source of evil. Consider the civilization of the West, how it hath agitated and alarmed the peoples of the world. An infernal engine hath been devised, and hath proved so cruel a weapon of destruction that its like none hath ever witnessed or heard. The purging of such deeply-rooted and overwhelming corruptions cannot be effected unless the peoples of the world unite in pursuit of one common aim and embrace one universal faith. Incline your ears unto the Call of this Wronged One and adhere firmly to the Lesser Peace. 
Strange and astonishing things exist in the earth but they are hidden from the minds and the understanding of men. These things are capable of changing the whole atmosphere of the earth and their contamination would prove lethal. Great God! We have observed an amazing thing. Lightning or a force similar to it is controlled by an operator and moveth at his command. Immeasurably exalted is the Lord of Power Who hath laid bare that which He purposed through the potency of His weighty and invincible command. 


Here we have a Prophet ISOLATED from any NEWSPAPERS or any form of communication relating to 2 inventions of the 19th Century and one from the 20th Century 

[1] The Internal Combustion Engine

[2] The Tesla Coil or LASER Light....

[3] And Possibly HAARP


explain that to me...


Religion versus science

by iamfine on

Religious folks  can always have an answer to questions such as What was it at the beginning? (ii) What is empty space with nothing in it? (iii) How was the universe created? (iv) Why did it come into being? (v) Can God actually arrive in the universe through nothingness as religion says? (vi) How do you define the beginning? For theologists, the answer is easy and simple "this is all the work of god ." With the development of the Hubble telescope, scientists are able to see more of what lies in space. The images produced by the telescope provide a view of the universe that surpasses that of ground-based telescopes used by scientists in the past. Its presence in our earth's orbit can shed light on many of the great mysteries of space, such as the age of the universe and the existence of dark energy. It has the ability to capture images of powerful explosions of energy that have occurred in far-distant galaxies when massive stars collapse.

While churchmen believe life was given by god in the form of Adam and Eve, scientists like to look at life differently, describing it as the result of the interaction of atoms and molecules that generated life in a suitable environment. Scientists believe when prehistoric meteors impacted earth’s oceans, balls of iron and carbon shot into bubbles of water and ammonia and triggered the evolution of life. Researchers can construct a DNA molecule to any specification, and in theory add this DNA to a test-tube of substances such as amino acids, fats and sugars to create life. Scientists are very close to creating completely new living organisms from the raw chemical building blocks of life. The creation of man-made microbes from a mixture of molecules could reveal how life first evolved on Earth. The idea of initiating life from a combination of chemicals may sound far-fetched, but advances in genetics and computational biology, using quantum mechanics and molecular dynamics, can pave the road to understanding life.  


another example to make my case:

by Disenchanted on


      Just imagine one of the prophets would have told his followers:

      "my faithful friends beware that we are sitting on a rotating ball (earth) and hurling like crazy through space orbiting around sun!!"

      How many followers he would have left after that? No doubt he would be called deranged and rest of his miracles would lose luster!!

    We just need to use that gray matter upstairs a bit to avoid accepting what we were told as childs and never got time to examine it!


إِذَا زُلْزِلَتِ الأَرْضُ زِلْزَالَهَا


My learned believer friend should have no problem differentiating between the use of "boiling" as an adjective and a gerund. My sentence  refers to the act of boiling; I had no intention of luring my adversary into scalding himself!!

As far as your geological references are concerned, I can assure you that I myself listened to a rather lengthy take back in the early '80s made by a fellow who was citing a Christian professor's assertion that at the End of Days, the earth will rotate in reverse, and the sun will rise from the West. 

As I said before, enjoy and thrive on your beliefs. Just don't push them on me. And don't blame the next earthquake on the female members of my family. That's all. 




Dear Commie,

by Demo on

As for the mountains functions to nail the lands down , see the following by the famous Dr. Frank Press, American Geophysicist:

A book entitled Earth is a basic reference textbook in many universities around the world.  One of its two authors is Professor Frank Press. Dr. Frank Press was President of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and Chairman of the National Research Council from 1981 to 1993 and Science Advisor to former US President Jimmy Carter and Director of Office of Science and Technology Policy from 1977 to 1980. His book says that mountains have underlying roots.  These roots are deeply embedded in the ground, thus, mountains have a shape like a peg (see figures 7, 8, and 9).  Figure 7: Mountains have deep roots under the surface of the ground. (Earth, Press and Siever, p. 413)


Figure 8: Schematic section.  The mountains, like pegs, have deep roots embedded in the ground. (Anatomy of the Earth, Cailleux, p. 220)  

Figure 9: Another illustration shows how the mountains are peg-like in shape, due to their deep roots. (Earth Science, Tarbuck and Lutgens, p. 158)   Modern earth sciences have proven that mountains have deep roots under the surface of the ground (see figure 9) and that these roots can reach several times their elevations above the surface of the earth. So the most suitable word to describe mountains on the basis of this information is the word ‘peg,’ since most of a properly set peg is hidden under the surface of the earth. The history of science tells us that the theory of mountains having deep roots was introduced only in the latter half of the nineteenth century. Mountains also play an important role in stabilizing the crust of the earth. They hinder the shaking of the earth. Likewise, the modern theory of plate tectonics holds that mountains work as stabilizers for the earth. This knowledge about the role of mountains as stabilizers for the earth has just begun to be understood in the framework of plate tectonics since the late 1960’s.

As for the drinking of boiling water, thank you. Help yourself.


When a commie recites!

by comrade on



I can't agree more with your statement:

"...the explanation of the Quranic verses dependent on "Scientific
Findings" which may appear true today, but may equally well be disproved
tomorrow by new findings, is a real waste of time & thus futile..."

I personally have always felt sorry for those who feel compelled to compensate for the shortcomings of Islam's image in this era of technological advancements by, for example, citing the mathematical miracles of the Quran.

From my point of view, as long as you believe in your religion without trying to shove it down anyone else's throat, it is fine if you believe that mountains function to nail land down or, for instance, that boiling water is good for punishing sinners without any mention of the fact that boiling water actually makes it potable. 



Dear Comrade,

by Demo on

Thanks much for the follow up. As with your own indicated translation of "the vast extent (thereof)" & as for the Arabic root word of "Vos-at" the universe is being increased in its size which would result in its volumetric expansion. Once again, the explanation of the Quranic verses dependent on "Scientific Findings" which may appear true today, but may equally well be disproved tomorrow by new findings, is a real waste of time & thus futile.

However, you should perhaps look at the Verse 30 of the Chapter 21. which states that "the heavens & earth (i.e. universe) were (once)  one single entity, which WE then parted asunder." Such reference to the unitary origin of the universe strikingly anticipates the view of almost all modern astrophysicists that this universe has originated as one entity from one single element, namely, hydrogen, which became subsequently consolidated through gravity and then separated into individual nebulae, galaxies and solar systems, with further individual parts progressively breaking away to form new entities in the shape of stars, planets and the latters' satellites.

Here (therein) are verses for people who think (Verse 3 of Chapter 13)


وَٱلسَّمَآءَ بَنَيۡنَـٰهَا بِأَيۡيْدٍ۬ وَإِنَّا لَمُوسِعُونَ


Means: We have built the heaven with might, and We it is Who make
the vast extent (thereof).

How does it give you the impression of talking about an expanding universe?



Dear Comrade

by Demo on

The word "Vos-at" used also in Farsi meants both "extending" & "expanding." as the object size is changing in both cases.



by Demo on

Who am I to judge you or anybody else for that matter??? Thanks the “Creator” for not making me “Disenchanted” about search of knowledge.  The “Demo” is an abbreviation for the “Demonstration” of little knowing in my commenting about any subject. My “icon” of “pomegranate” is also a sign of beauty with the most superb GOD’s “CON-struction” work. I also ask for “GOD” forgiveness for making any mistakes here.  As I said the Quran is not about “Science” whether that be Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy, and etc. It is about your short life on this planet & more importantly about the thereafter. Believe it or not, that is all up to you. Quran emphasizes over & over again about the use of your brain/thinking before you believe in anything. Read the book without any bias.

PS: Where in the Quran, “it stats earth is flat and Sun goes around it”????As for the creation of the Universe in 6 days, one needs to learn what the word “Youm” (Day) in Arabic means before getting “disenchanted.” It could mean a day of human scale, two days of human life as we say that also in Farsi, or hundred thousands of years as it had been used in ancient Arabic writings. As one day you are going to leave this world I bet my life that you would feel that your life was not more than a day or two. Again read the book before commenting. My GOD bless all of us.


Expansion of universe in Quran

by comrade on

Where is it? Spreading is not the same as expanding...



Response to Demo....

by Disenchanted on


       Dear Demo (Not sure what is Demo?!),

      Lets not judge each other and stick to the issue. Obviously you missed the point I was trying to make by a mile!

    So you claim that expansion of universe is mentioned in Quran!! Lets for a moment agree that it is what science says nowadays. Then the question is didn't it look nonsense to people at the time of revelation or even centuries later at the time of Newton lets say!

  People would have been gone heretic if they were to take this on ts face value then. You'd admitthat if you happen to read astronomy as much I have read Quran! 

      Until mid twentieth century everyone thought Universe is limited to Milky Way!! It took a while for people realize those other galaxies are beyond Milky Way! So what is the point of telling people 1000 years ago that universe is expanding?  

     By the way astronomers now say not only universe is expanding it also accelerating too!! Is that in Quran too?! Is there the notion of acceleration defined there? Forget all that, as I was saying science keeps changing. Lets say tomorrow a paper comes out saying universe is collapsing on itself. Then what we are to make of that? Should we reject the Quran or the scientific view? If we stick to the scripture then, does it mean all the departments of astronomy and cosmology around the world should make that a prerequisite? 

 What are to make of the fact that Quran states earth is flat and Sun goes around it? Creation of the universe in 6 days?! 

    The point was that science is by nature evolving and it does not make a good company for something absolute and Devine as professed.



by Demo on

disinguinely states that: "For “god” sake we (even Einstein!) thought universe is static up until 90 years ago just to realize it is and has been expanding for billions of years!"

It then will be shocking for him/her to learn that the following had been written about 1500 years ago in Quran: AND IT IS WE who have built the universe with power; and, it is We who are steadily expanding it (Verse 47 of Chapter 51 in Quran).”

Please read Quran at least once without any prejudice before commenting about it. The book is not about science. It is rather all about your creation process beginning from a drop of liquid in light of your mama’s womb & ending in the dark side of your grave.

 PS: Nowhere in Quran you can find the title of “Holy” for the book itself. Rather you will find out that such title belongs exclusively to the one & only one “ORIGINATOR.”