Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out



        QUR'AN SAID 1,400 YEARS AGO

Islam is a religion (way of life) based on nature, and there is nothing in science that
could contradict Islam. We in our limited knowledge often doubt this assertion about
Islam, only to be proved wrong by a new discovery. Many things that modern science
is discovering today were mentioned in the Qur'an more than 1,400 years ago.

In this article we will concentrate on modern cosmology and the Qur'an. Cosmology
is the study of the birth and evolution of the cosmos, or heavenly bodies, and the

The earth has plenty of water with only one- fourth-land area. The temperature on
earth varies between freezing point and boiling point of water with an average
temperature that keeps water liquid. Scientists say that life evolved on earth because
the environment and conditions were conducive to its existence. However, one can
propose an odd or counter argument that the presence of life on earth accounts for the
exceptionally hospitable environment and conditions on the planet earth. The fact is
that the real universe does harbor intelligent observers. In order to achieve this goal
certain constraints were placed on the diversity of ways the universe could have
begun. Similarly, constraints were placed on the physical laws that could have
governed the development of the universe. If the universe were allowed to evolve in a
random or accidental fashion, it would have been impossible for any intelligent life to
come into existence. This argument is called the modern cosmological principle or
anthropological principle.

Any theory, which rises to reconstruct the initial conditions of the universe and the
corresponding laws of nature, should show that those conditions and laws give rise to
an inhabited universe. The high point of the modern cosmological principle is that the
universe we live in is the only conceivable universe, which harbors intelligent life.
The earth has a privileged position because intelligent life is present on this planet.


 In 1937 P.A.M. Dirac (who died in Florida in 1984), a Nobel Prize winner in Physics,
noted certain curious numerical relations among the dimensionless numbers that play
an important role in physics and astrophysics.

The first quantity is a dimensionless form of the gravitational coupling constant,
which is a measure of the strength of the gravitational force and has a value of
roughly 10-40 . The inverse of this becomes 1040 . The second dimensionless number is
the age of the universe expressed in nuclear units. Professor Dirac defined it as the
ratio of the Hubble age to the time required for light to travel a distance equal to the
radius of a proton. This ratio has a value of roughly 10 40 . The third dimensionless
quantity is the number of massive particles or nucleons (protons and neutrons) in
the visible region of the universe. This number is estimated to be 10 80 and the square
root of this number is 1040 . One can see that a relationship exists between these three
constants, which are strongly constrained by the conditions necessary for the
existence of man. Hence Dr. Dirac's numerical relations apply not to any possible
evolutionary universe, but only to the universe humans observe that today. Evolution
of a habitable star system depends sensitively on the value of the gravitational
coupling constant. In a universe where the gravitational coupling constant is an order
of magnitude large, then the sun evolves into a Blue giant, which dies too soon. On
the other hand in a universe where the gravitational coupling constant is an order of
magnitude small, then the sun evolves into a red dwarf that exists for an extremely
long time but radiates little energy. The emergence of life demands two things of a
star. First, it must live long enough for living organisms to evolve. Second, it must
radiate enough energy to warm a habitable region of space, that is, a region where a
planet could have a stable orbit. Neither a blue giant nor a red dwarf satisfies both
conditions, hence could sustain life. The anthropological principle asserts that the
presence of life on earth explains why the sun is at the division between the blue
giants and the red dwarfs and hence why the gravitational constant has the value it is
observed to have.

  It explains why the earth is 93 million miles (1 Astronomical Unit = AU = 93 X 10 6
miles) away from the sun. If the earth was close to or farther away from the sun
compared with the present location then life would not exist.

   Stephen Hawking, Professor of Astrophysics and Cosmology at Oxford University
who is called the greatest genius alive today, has concluded after many extensive
calculations and the analyses that galaxies were not formed by a random process or
chance after the Big Bang but were formed when recessional velocity was exactly
equal to the escape velocity of matter. Professor Hawking concluded that since "the
existence of galaxies would seem to be a necessary precondition for the development
of any form of intelligent life." The fact that we have observed the universe to be
isotropic is therefore only a consequence of our existence.

  The Qur'anic Statements
    The Qur'an talks about the foundation of the anthropological principle in these

               He has created the heavens and the earth for just ends.

                                       (Surah al-Nahl, 16:3 & Surah al-Hijr, 15:85)

 Yusuf Ali, commenting on the above verses, says: "Everything in God's creation has
use and purpose, and fits into a design. It is true sense of the word and it is good and
just. Not for sport, or fortuitously and without design. God's creation is all for a true,
just and righteous purpose."
The fate of the earth is intimately linked with the fate of the sun. Astrophysicists
estimate that the sun's nuclear fuel will be depleted in another Five billion years.
Already the sun is four and a half billion years old. The Qur'an says:

                               Lo! In the creation of the heavens and the earth and
                               (in) the difference of night and day are token (of His
                               sovereignty) for men of understanding. Those who
                               remember God while standing, sitting, and (tying) on
                               their sides and contemplate on the creation of the
                               heavens and the earth.

                                               (Surah Al-i-Imran, 3:190-191)

It further says:

                               He draweth the night as a veil over the day, each
                               seeking the other in rapid succession; He created the
                               sun, the moon and the stars, (all) governed by laws
                               under His command.

                                                               (Surah al-A'RAF, 7:54)


Was the universe created by chance or by an accident?

Let us consider how our sun (a star) was created. Paul Davies, formerly a Professor
of Astrophysics at Cambridge University, and now living in Australia, says: If the
primeval material was churned about random, it would have produced black holes
rather than stars, because the black holes, being so much more disordered, can be
produced in a vastly greater number of ways. For every star that formed, countless
billions of more easily achieved black holes should have accompanied it. The chances
against the sun, rather than the black hole, emerging from a purely random process
will be one in 1020 (or the probability is 10-20 which is pretty improbable by any

If the same argument is applied to the entire universe, the chances of getting a starry
cosmos with the present-day orderliness with no chaos are one in 10 30 . This is like
trying to shoot a one-square inch target at the other end of the universe at a distance of
10 billion light years away. (A light year is the distance light travels for one year at
the rate of 186,000 miles per second.) Therefore the conclusion is we live in a world
of astronomical unlikelihood." Theologically one can infer that God caused against all
odds the primeval matter to escape annihilation from an overwhelming array of
universes dominated by black holes, and arranged it into life supporting s tars such as
our sun. It is quite clear from the above that it is highly improbable for a life-
supporting star such as our sun to evolve by random processes. When the argument is
extended to the entire universe, then the creation of the universe by random process
becomes astronomically unlikely.

To top