Archive for December, 2008

2008

This should be my last blog of 2008, as tonight I will be going away.

All praise be to Allah and peace and blessings be upon his final messenger, Muhammad and his family and his noble companions.

I would like to thank Allah for this year, for having let me seen this year. I thank him for having eaten well, slept well, for having gone on one or two trips abroad. I thank him that I have my health and so do my family too. I know that he is the most merciful, and the most kind and that his word is true. He, the most high, has said that if we thank him, he will give us more.

2008 has been an interesting year.

We have seen oil prices go up and up, and now recently we have seen them decrease dramatically.

We have seen the world’s most powerful country elect their first president, Senator Barack Hussein Obama.

Obama for me has many Kennedyesque (to coin a term) qualities and whilst Jack Kennedy represents a story of unfufilled potential, perhaps Obama can be different in that he can serve his term in its entirety and preside over a period of change and improvement.

Whatever happens, the election of Obama is a monumental landmark in the history of the United States and the world generation, and there are some who would covet us for being witness to such an event.

We have seen a recession starting and continuing all over the world.

We have seen the continuing rise of China even manifested in their great success in this year’s Olympics.

We have seen the Russian bear once again reasserting its strength in its war with Georgia.

We have seen the Albanian eagle soar into the clouds and into the skies with joy as Kosova takes its rightful place in the family of nations after years of suffering.

We have seen bloodshed in the middle east, south asia and many other parts of the world.

We have seen jobs being lost, houses being repossessed and lives affected severely in Europe and America.

We have seen many things, but we hope that we will continue to see, to continue to hear, to breathe and to be on this earth. We thank Allah for once again having seen another year and that we may yet again see the year to come, and to improve ourselves and to use the very short amount of time alloted to us on this earth wisely and in a better way and for us to truly realize our potentials as his creatures.

Thank you for taking time out to read this, I wish you and your family and friends all the best for the next 12 months.

– Faatih.

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Gratitude in Islam.

Gratitude in Islam

Gratitude in Islam is one of the most fundamental aspects of this religion. A Muslim is not merely one cognisant of the fact that the creator of the universe is one and is responsible for everything he has in this life i.e. his consciousness, his health, his family, his sanity and his wealth but also realizes that it is his obligation to express gratitude to his lord.

The Arabic word for gratitude is “shukr” and the opposite of gratitude is “kufr”, which also happens to be the word for disbelief. So rejection of Allah and his religion is intimately connected to ungratefulness.

Why is life so difficult?

Many of us focus on our problems and difficulties and say in despair “why is life so difficult?”. This is natural, but it is not something a Muslim should do as he should be stronger in character. There are different reasons why people say “why is life so difficult?”.

Someone may have all the basic necessities of life but want something else. This may be caused by different reasons. It may just be caused by pure greed, a desire for sensual fulfillment or by the sort of people they mix with. A rich kid may want a ferrari for his 18th birthday and fails to get it, and is then filled with frustration and anger. The question then we have to ask ourselves, the thing which we desire and cannot attain, do we really need it? If we do really need it can’t we wait for longer? If we can’t wait and we are impatient this highlights the fact that we are impatient. Patience is something key to the Muslim character and is something developed upon during the month of Ramadan when we fast from dawn to dusk.

Many of us today are compared to the people of the past or of poorer countries, greedier, more impatient and more frivilous. I will try to illustrate this by giving an extreme example.

The Menendez brothers were two brothers in the United states from a wealthy family who murdered their parents in cold blood born in 1968 and 1971 In 1988 the two brothers who had grown up in wealth and apparently stole $100,000. They were saved from going to jail by their father paying heavy amounts of money to a top lawyer. The following year the Menendez brothers repaid their father by murdering him.

Lyle Menendez, who murdered his mother and father.

After murdering both of their parents and using a lawyer to try to somehow claim that they had been deprived and abused by their parents, a false claim belied by the fact that the two went on a spending spree including expensive watches, travel abroad, fancy cars and so forth. The rules of life, which some call “karma”, which Islamically is something we have in our own religious texts to, eventually led to these two to being imprisoned where they still are to this very day.

This is a very extreme example, however though none of us are as bad as these two murderers, we in our own way have a Menendez brothers streak in us, in our own impatience, lack of gratitude and complaining. Whilst these two were eager and impatient to live a materialistic and hedonistic lifestyle even if it meant murdering their parents, our eagerness and impatience to get what we want can often lead to us complaining about how “unfair” life is.

In comparison to us, the Menendez brothers lived in luxury, how could they be so ungrateful we ask? However in comparison to others we ourselves with our comfortable homes, computers, relatively free and peaceful societies live in great wealth. The relationship between us and people in some poorer countries is in some ways like the relationship between us and the Menendez brothers.

Two boys in Argentina, far poorer than the Menendez brothers.

Examples of poverty from Argentina.

Just as the Menendez brothers, Kyle and Erik, who obviously knew many people were far worse off than them, we also know many others are worse off us. However that does not give us the mental strength, resilience or gratefulness to desist from complaining.

Life is beautiful.

Life is beautiful. Every breath we take is a gift. If one of our beloved ones is close to death it is then we start to appreciate life more. The thought of them not surviving brings to the fore how precious life is. Let us look at what Islam says about gratitude:

And He subjected for you the sun and the moon, continuous [in orbit], and subjected for you the night and the day. And He gave you from all you asked of Him. And if you should count the favor [i.e., blessings] of Allaah, you could not enumerate them. Indeed, mankind is [generally] most unjust and ungrateful.” (Quran, 14th Surah, verse 32.34)

Allah also said in the Quran:

‘If you are grateful, I will surely give you more and more” (14th Surah, verse 7)

It is this which is the most important message which I am saying here.

Modern studies have shown that if we look at the glass as half full rather than half empty, and if we always focus on what we have, make light of our difficulties – which in no way means not trying to resolve them or accepting injustice – then that positivity attracts positivity. Statements are like du’a (supplication). We have to be careful what we say, because words have power, words are not “just words” but something far greater. If a man were to say every day of his life for one year “I’m going to break my leg, I’m going to break my leg, I’m going to break it”, then there is a good chance that this will happen. For words can be self-fulfilling prophecies. Islam tells us to be careful with what we say, and to try to speak good. Islam also tells us to be optimistic in what we hope for the future, but realistic in our assessment of the present.

We will have difficulties, we will have problems. We may lose loved ones. We may ask “Why? Why me? Why is this happening to me?” However this indicates a lack of understanding. For though we cry and lament and it is only human we should accept that this is part of life. Let us take a look at the life of the prophet peace be upon him.

– He was essentially an orphan and never saw his parents.

– He was beaten and physically assaulted whilst giving his message. He is the beloved of Allah and the best of creation, yet he was stoned by young children with blood dripping so much till his sandals were stuck to his feet. This was in Taif.

– He and his followers were boycotted by nearly all of his tribe, ostracized with them having to live in a relatively isolated valley.

– His beloved wife Khadija (may Allah be pleased with her) died during this period of boycott.

– The prophet’s only son, Ibrahim, died when he was 18 months old.

As Egyptian writer Hakal says:

“His (the prophet peace be upon him) heart was torn apart by the new tragedy, and his face mirrored his inner pain. Choking with sorrow, he said to his son, “O Ibrahim, against the judgement of God, we cannot avail you a thing,” and then fell silent. Tears flowed from his eyes. The child lapsed gradually, and his mother and aunt watched and cried loudly and incessantly, but the Prophet never ordered them to stop. As Ibrahim surrendered to death, Muhammad’s hope which had consoled him for a brief while completely crumbled. With tears in his eyes he talked once more to the dead child: “O Ibrahim, were the truth not certain that the last of us will join the first, .we would have mourned you even more than we do now.” A moment later he said: “The eyes send their tears and the heart is saddened, but we do not say anything except that which pleases our Lord. Indeed, O Ibrahim, we are bereaved by your departure from us.”

– The prophet did not lead a wealthy life. In the last ten years of his life he never ate wheat three days in a row. He used to sleep on a mate made out of date palm leaves.

So this is the beloved of Allah, the best human ever and the messenger of God and this is how he lived and what he had to experience, and yet we find people today complaining about things far smaller or questioning.

In Islam we are told that we should always look at those who are far worse off than us, and not those who who are better off than us. It is highly important that we cultivate patience, because lack of patience can turn us into animals, can make us aggressive, eager for material pleasure. Patience however humanizes us and makes us better people. Complaining too can also be evil and it is said “Complaining is from the Shaytan”. If we have problems, instead of speaking to our friend for 1 hour, we should at least make du’a to Allah for 1/3 an hour. For he is the one who has power of all things, whilst our friends do not. He is always there, whilst friendship comes and goes. He understands fully, even better than we do, whereas our friends may not truly understand what we are going through.

If we are sad and despondent we should try to read Surah Yusuf, a Surah which gives happiness and which was revealed to the prophet peace be upon him during “The year of sadness”, the year when his beloved wife Khadija (may Allah be pleased with her) and his uncle, Abu Talib both died. I myself personally whilst living in Syria was going through difficult times, living in a foreign land and having lost my job. I was advised to read this Surah and after doing so I changed and inexplicably started to feel much happier.

When we are experiencing difficult times, we need to think of those around us who are worse off than us, or those before us or elsewhere who have suffered extraordinary pain or trials, and we need to focus on those things which we have. When we start to focus on what we have and are grateful for them, we shall see that they will start to multiply. When you are grateful, Allah will give you more. When you give to others, Allah will give even more to you.

So here is a recommendation. Everyday after Fajr (the morning prayer) please take 3 minutes or more out and mentally say to yourself all the good things you have in your life. Make them twenty, even if it is just that you have eyes whilst others are blind, or that you have limbs, or that all of your children are there, or that in your life you were fortunate enough to travel to Paris, or some city. I want you to thank Allah for all he has given you.

Do the same before you go to bed, make it twenty things, and then maybe if you wish to increase them with time. You will see that you become a more positive person, and that when you thank Allah he will give you more.

“‘If you are grateful, I will surely give you more and more” (Quran, 14:7)

Positivity brings positive outcomes, gratitude and abundance bring more abundance.

How to pray Fajr on time.

How to pray Fajr on time.

As we all know a Muslim is required to pray 5 times a day, at different times. First before sunrise, second at noon, third at mid afternoon, fourth at sunset and fifth and final at night time. The first of these prayers which is to be performed before sunrise is called “Fajr”. Fajr time varies through out the year but it can be times such as 4, 5, or 6 am.

Many of us find it difficult to wake up on time to perform this prayer even if we have an alarm clock.

The prayer in Islam is called “as-salat” and for one to be consistent with it, it is better that they fully appreciate what it is. The prayer is a time where the Muslim, the servant of Allah, suspends his focus on the world and turns his attention to his master, the supreme creator of the heavens and the earth. The one who gave him life, who gave him the limbs with which to work, the eyes with which to see and who gives him his sustenance. The Muslim mentally. verbally and physically focuses on his lord. He stands up, sits and also prostrates in a manifest sign of complete and utter submission. The prayer is such a beautiful thing, for the creator has said that we do not need to go through any intermediary to address him, nor are we so lowly and impure that he will not let us address him. After the prayer the Muslim then raises his hands in du’a (supplication) with his eyes at times looking at the heavens and may ask his master for whatever he wishes or needs, be it help with an affair, a good job, for forgiveness, a partner and anything that is permitted.

The prayer helps to give us strength, forebearance and energy in a difficult world full of challenges.

The Fajr prayer is difficult for many due to the early time at which it must be done. There are different ways of overcoming this. One way is to focus on the benefits and reward of this prayer.

Hadith: ““One who performs `Isha’ prayer in congregation, is as if he has performed Salat for half of the night. And one who performs the Fajr prayer in congregation, is as if he has performed Salat the whole night.”

(Reported in Sahih Muslim).

In addition to this there are ahadith which mention how the one who prays Fajr is under’s Allah protection.

Praying this prayer on time will bring extra blessings and reward in your life. If we were to be told that we could do something which would result in a huge pay rise, or that every morning we would have a sumptuous breakfast then our motivation would definitely increase greatly. So is the case with the Fajr prayer. The problems, difficulties we face in life are often the results of things that we do, sins that we commit and we must look inwards to see things that we are doing wrong and can improve. Fajr is a beautiful time, a time of fresh air. I remember sometimes having woken up and started walking outside, the environment is much different and there is a feeling of serenity, a feeling that we are on the verge of a new day, a new fresh start.

A mosque during Fajr time.

Let us now turn to what we can do to help us pray Fajr on time.

1. Buy an alarm clock. Many of us already do this, then one piece of advice is to keep the alarm clock as far away from you as possible so that you cannot just turn it off.

2. Sleep early. Modern science shows us that sleeping early is beneficial for us and more in tune with nature and producing the best form us both physically and mentally.

3. Recite the last 4 verses of Surah Kahf, the 18th surah of the Quran, before you go to sleep.

4. You can also pray 2 rakahs and then sincerely ask Allah to wake you up for Fajr.

5. Tell your mind strongly and confidently that you will wake up for Fajr.

6. Upon hearing the alarm clock, and then waking up remember Allah or try to say his name whether it be just Allah, or Allahu Akbar or Subahanallah.

“Abu Hurairah reported that Allah’s Messenger (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “The Satan knots three knots on the nape of the head of every one of you when he goes to sleep. On every knot he utters, ‘There is a long night for you. So sleep.’ If he gets up and remembers Allah, one knot is loosened; when he performs ablution another knot is loosened and when he observes prayer the third knot is also loosened and he gets up in the morning in an active and delightful mood. But if he does not do so, he gets up in the morning as spiteful and lazy.” (Hadith reported in Bukhari).

7. Wake up an hour or two earlier than Fajr if possible and use your time constructively in that period until Fajr itself, be it in performing Tahajjud (the late night prayer) reading Quran or Islamic literature, or even something related to your studies or secular interests.

Try these things and may Allah give you and me success in this matter, and in this world and the hereafter.

– Faatih.

Why do many scientists disbelieve in God?

Why do many scientists and others disbelieve in God?

 Scientists are held in respect by society, the average layman consciously or unconsciously believes that the world we live in now with all its material and technological achievements and the relatively comfortable life we live now is as a result of these people. He has a trust and respect for these people. However many lay people mistakenly think that all scientists are atheists, when in fact many if not most believe in the existence of God, something many have concluded through scientific study.

 

The question now is why do many including scientists disbelieve in God and not only that, why are they so dismissive of belief in the divine as opposed to accepting it as a legitimate stance?

 

Materialism, naturalism.

 

Many people irrespective of their background, religion of their society, education through out the world believe that the only thing exists is what we can see and observe. For them something which we cannot see, touch, feel, smell or taste does not exist. From their viewpoint if they were sitting in a room with another person and there was nothing there besides two chairs, a table, the carpet, a window and the two people themselves, that is all that exists. If one of these two people said “There is another being in this room, one whom you cannot see” then they would dismiss this as absurd, and something hallucinatory. I have used this example since this is something which we could all relate to including theists and which would probably cause religious people themselves to be sceptical or dismissive of the person saying there was a third invisible person in the room.

 

This in a very simplified form is the way many atheistic or secular people view religion. Something almost hallucinatory and delusional. For them all that exists is the tangible, the material, that which we can see and touch. I will call this position “Materialism” or “Naturalism”. Some people just grow up with an inherit disposition to rejecting anything beyond the material (5 senses) world and some of these people become scientists and carry this prejudice into the field of science.

 

Science is in reality a method. It is to discover more about reality through an organized, systematic and empirical manner. As such science which is conducted by limited, human beings with the limited resources at their disposal is itself limited and cannot study that which is beyond the 5 senses, the tangible, material world.

 

Atheists contend that not believing in God is philosophically or logically the default position and the onus of proof lies with theists. However upon closer inspection this is not actually correct even according to the principles of logic and philosophy.

 

Let me quote an academic from New Zealand.

 

“Dr. Cooke is correct in noting that the theist who makes a positive claim regarding God’s existence is obliged to give reasons in support of that contention. This, however, does not mean that atheism is the default position unless sound arguments for theism exist, since atheism too is a positive claim about the nature of reality. “Atheism,” writes Jeaneane Fowler, “is clearly naturalism versus supernaturalism.”[5] And so, it is, as Madalyn Murray O’Hair explains, “based upon a materialist philosophy, which holds that nothing exists but natural phenomena. There are no supernatural forces or entities, nor can there be any. Nature simply exists.”[6] This is quite a remarkable claim! Since theist and atheist make positive claims about the nature of reality (unlike the agnostic who suspends judgement), the burden of proof is on them both to substantiate their respective positions of supernaturalism and naturalism.

It is important to bear in mind the central point of contention between Dr. Cooke and myself. As William Rowe observes, “[p]erhaps the best way to understand the struggle between atheism and theism is to note theism’s insistence on an agent explanation of various natural phenomena, including the existence of the universe.”[7] In my opening argument, I sketched out considerations that give us plausible reasons for thinking that God exists, such as the origins of the universe, its fine-tuning, etc. That is, these facts about the universe only find a plausible account through agent explanation (i.e. the existence of God). Dr. Cooke denies all of this. He thinks, presumably, that there is a perfectly fine naturalistic account–a “Grand Story” (as Craig and Moreland call it)–that will explain the facts of the universe and our existence in it.”

http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/bill_cooke/cooke-aijaz/aijaz2.html

 

Thus both theism and atheism are positions on how the world came into existence and atheism is not the default position. From a scientific and logical viewpoint then, the objective scientist should not assert either of these positions to be true (he can personally believe or favour one, but not to publicly assert it to laypeople as correct). However many atheist scientists  have a prejudice, i.e. a pre-formed opinion on something against theism and thus “intelligent design”. This has even led to the loss of objectivity in the way they conduct science. Principles and ideas which they would normally not accept, are used by them in their quest to disprove the existence of God at any costs. What the mainstream media do not tell the public is that there is at the very least difference in the scientific community about the existence of an intelligent creator i.e. God, and what is also not known is many atheist scientists too have their own agenda, based on their own ideology and wish to try to twist science to proving them right. Examples have been given on other articles here on this site.

Whether the supreme, all-knowing entity that we call God exists is something which has been covered in other articles. However let us go back to the original example in this article about the two people in the room with just two chairs, a carpet and a window. There are other things in this world that exist between the 5 senses. Even man’s 5 senses are limited. We cannot with our naked eye see ultraviolet light properly. Are there things beyond the 5 senses?

Telepathy and intuition: Cambridge scientist Dr Rupert Sheldrake has stated through scientific study that telepathy exists. All of us in our own personal lives have thought or spoken of someone and then almost miraculously they contacted us there and then. Also it is widely known the sort of mental connection that many twins have, also the maternal connection between a mother and her child. Females have a stronger sense of intuition (since the right side of their brain, the part which deals with that is bigger) than men. How many females have had a gut feeling, a sense of intuition and were correct?

 

 

 

Dr Rupert Sheldrake of Cambridge University.

 

This sort of phenomena which does not fall within any of the 5 sense and is beyond them has thus been labelled “extra-sensory perception”, many of us call it 6th sense, intuition and so forth.

Dreams: Many of us have had dreams that have come true. Neither does this fall into the 5 senses. I will coin an adjective for that relating to the 5 senses and call it “pensensory”, pen being the Roman prefix denoting 5 as in the word “pentagon”.

Telekinesis: Dr Daryl J Bem of Cornell University published an article which spoke of experiments indicating the existence of telekinesis. It can be read here: http://dbem.ws/psi_world.html

 

The doctor also made some interesting comments about the subjective nature of scientific “proof” in that article, as certain sceptics and atheists are very resistant to any scientific research which challenges their pre-formed ideas and dogma.

One can also read http://www.metapsychique.org/Does-Psi-Exist-Replicable-Evidence.html.

 

I would call those things which are not perceived or explained by our 5 senses as “extra-material” (outside the material, tangible) or “supernatural”.

 

There are other things which can also be pointed to. The world that we exist in is not just composed of those things which we limited human beings can see with our 5 senses. The human being is not merely a collection of meat, bones, nerve wires and organs all clumped together whose distant ancestors were algae, fish and amphibians and who lives on this earth for no purpose, and who will die and whose very consciousness will cease to exist and disappear into a void of nothingness.

 

 

 

 Amphibian, many evolutionists believe that humans evolved from algae to fish to amphibians.

 

 The human being is so much more than that. He feels pain, he feels anger, despair and a so many other things in the vast spectra of human emotions. Throughout human civilization there has been continuous testimony of that beyond the material, of that beyond the pensensory world. The human experience is a vast one encompassing many things. To deny things such as intuition, the telepathic bond that a mother may have with her child and so many other things is to deny part of the human experience. Writers, poets and others in addressing our emotions, our imagination addressed something far beyond the material. The human being has a soul. He appreciates beauty in all its forms be it aesthetic, literary, and so forth.

 

 Art admirers in a gallery.

His appreciation of beauty is not a superficial one purely formed by his environment and other external factors, but comes from deeper, internal factors, it is at times a sense of awe and wonder when he encounters something truly impressive, immense and breathtaking. Not only are his nerve wires touched but so is his emotional, his spiritual side. The human being is not a robot composed of meat, bones and skin he is something special, and part of a universe which itself something truly special, something amazing and which continuously astounds scientists with its sheer complexity, intricacy and sophistication. He sees, smells, hears, tastes, touches but so also does he think, dream, ponder, revere. He is composed of both his body and his soul, the material and the extra-material.

 

To deny this is to deny an aspect of humanity and to never be able to completely appreciate the human experience, to live it fully and to make the most of it.

 

– Faatih

 

Scientists and the Quran.

Reprinted from another source: http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/219/

The following are some comments of scientists[1]  on the scientific miracles in the Holy Quran.  All of these comments have been taken from the videotape entitled This is the Truth.  In this videotape, you can see and hear the scientists while they are giving the following comments.  (To view the RealPlayer video of a comment, click on the link at the end of that comment.  For a copy of this videotape, please visit this page.)

1)    Dr. T. V. N. Persaud is Professor of Anatomy, Professor of Pediatrics and Child Health, and Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences at the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.  There, he was the Chairman of the Department of Anatomy for 16 years.  He is well-known in his field.  He is the author or editor of 22 textbooks and has published over 181 scientific papers.  In 1991, he received the most distinguished award presented in the field of anatomy in Canada, the J.C.B. Grant Award from the Canadian Association of Anatomists.  When he was asked about the scientific miracles in the Quran which he has researched, he stated the following:

“The way it was explained to me is that Muhammad was a very ordinary man.  He could not read, didn’t know [how] to write. In fact, he was an illiterate.  And we’re talking about twelve [actually about fourteen] hundred years ago.  You have someone illiterate making profound pronouncements and statements and that are amazingly accurate about scientific nature.  And I personally can’t see how this could be a mere chance.  There are too many accuracies and, like Dr. Moore, I have no difficulty in my mind that this is a divine inspiration or revelation which led him to these statements.”  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

Professor Persaud has included some Quranic verses and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, in some of his books.  He has also presented these verses and sayings of the Prophet Muhammad at several conferences.

2)    Dr. Joe Leigh Simpson is the Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Professor of Molecular and Human Genetics at the Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, USA.  Formerly, he was Professor of Ob-Gyn and the Chairman of the Department of Ob-Gyn at the University of Tennessee, Memphis, Tennessee, USA.  He was also the President of the American Fertility Society.  He has received many awards, including the Association of Professors of Obstetrics and Gynecology Public Recognition Award in 1992.  Professor Simpson studied the following two sayings of the Prophet Muhammad:

“In every one of you, all components of your creation are collected together in your mother’s womb by forty days…”[2]

“If forty-two nights have passed over the embryo, God sends an angel to it, who shapes it and creates its hearing, vision, skin, flesh, and bones….”[3]

He studied these two sayings of the Prophet Muhammad extensively, noting that the first forty days constitute a clearly distinguishable stage of embryo-genesis.  He was particularly impressed by the absolute precision and accuracy of those sayings of the Prophet Muhammad.  Then, during one conference, he gave the following opinion:

“So that the two hadeeths (the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad) that have been noted provide us with a specific time table for the main embryological development before forty days.  Again, the point has been made, I think, repeatedly by other speakers this morning: these hadeeths could not have been obtained on the basis of the scientific knowledge that was available [at] the time of their writing . . . . It follows, I think, that not only there is no conflict between genetics and religion but, in fact, religion can guide science by adding revelation to some of the traditional scientific approaches, that there exist statements in the Quran shown centuries later to be valid, which support knowledge in the Quran having been derived from God.”  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

Dr Simpson, now at Florida

3)    Dr. E. Marshall Johnson is Professor Emeritus of Anatomy and Developmental Biology at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.  There, for 22 years he was Professor of Anatomy, the Chairman of the Department of Anatomy, and the Director of the Daniel Baugh Institute.  He was also the President of the Teratology Society.  He has authored more than 200 publications.  In 1981, during the Seventh Medical Conference in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, Professor Johnson said in the presentation of his research paper:

“Summary: The Quran describes not only the development of external form, but emphasizes also the internal stages, the stages inside the embryo, of its creation and development, emphasizing major events recognized by contemporary science.”  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

Also he said: “As a scientist, I can only deal with things which I can specifically see.  I can understand embryology and developmental biology.  I can understand the words that are translated to me from the Quran.  As I gave the example before, if I were to transpose myself into that era, knowing what I knew today and describing things, I could not describe the things which were described.  I see no evidence for the fact to refute the concept that this individual, Muhammad, had to be developing this information from some place.  So I see nothing here in conflict with the concept that divine intervention was involved in what he was able to write.”[4]  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

4)    Dr. William W. Hay is a well-known marine scientist.  He is Professor of Geological Sciences at the University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, USA.  He was formerly the Dean of the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami, Miami, Florida, USA.  After a discussion with Professor Hay about the Quran’s mention of recently discovered facts on seas, he said:

“I find it very interesting that this sort of information is in the ancient scriptures of the Holy Quran, and I have no way of knowing where they would come from, but I think it is extremely interesting that they are there and that this work is going on to discover it, the meaning of some of the passages.”  And when he was asked about the source of the Quran, he replied: “Well, I would think it must be the divine being.”  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

5)    Dr. Gerald C. Goeringer is Course Director and Associate Professor of Medical Embryology at the Department of Cell Biology, School of Medicine, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, USA.  During the Eighth Saudi Medical Conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Professor Goeringer stated the following in the presentation of his research paper:

“In a relatively few aayahs (Quranic verses) is contained a rather comprehensive description of human development from the time of commingling of the gametes through organogenesis.  No such distinct and complete record of human development, such as classification, terminology, and description, existed previously.  In most, if not all, instances, this description antedates by many centuries the recording of the various stages of human embryonic and fetal development recorded in the traditional scientific literature.”  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

6)    Dr. Yoshihide Kozai is Professor Emeritus at Tokyo University, Hongo, Tokyo, Japan, and was the Director of the National Astronomical Observatory, Mitaka, Tokyo, Japan.  He said:

“I am very much impressed by finding true astronomical facts in [the] Quran, and for us the modern astronomers have been studying very small pieces of the universe.  We’ve concentrated our efforts for understanding of [a] very small part.  Because by using telescopes, we can see only very few parts [of] the sky without thinking [about the] whole universe.  So, by reading [the] Quran and by answering to the questions, I think I can find my future way for investigation of the universe.”  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

7)    Professor Tejatat Tejasen is the Chairman of the Department of Anatomy at Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai, Thailand.  Previously, he was the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at the same university.  During the Eighth Saudi Medical Conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Professor Tejasen stood up and said:

“During the last three years, I became interested in the Quran . . . . From my study and what I have learned from this conference, I believe that everything that has been recorded in the Quran fourteen hundred years ago must be the truth, that can be proved by the scientific means.  Since the Prophet Muhammad could neither read nor write, Muhammad must be a messenger who relayed this truth, which was revealed to him as an enlightenment by the one who is eligible [as the] creator.  This creator must be God.  Therefore, I think this is the time to say La ilaha illa Allah, there is no god to worship except Allah (God), Muhammadur rasoolu Allah, Muhammad is Messenger (Prophet) of Allah (God).  Lastly, I must congratulate for the excellent and highly successful arrangement for this conference . . . . I have gained not only from the scientific point of view and religious point of view but also the great chance of meeting many well-known scientists and making many new friends among the participants.  The most precious thing of all that I have gained by coming to this place is La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammadur rasoolu Allah, and to have become a Muslim.”  (View the RealPlayer video of this comment)

After all these examples we have seen about the scientific miracles in the Holy Quran and all these scientists’ comments on this, let us ask ourselves these questions:

·        Could it be a coincidence that all this recently discovered scientific information from different fields was mentioned in the Quran, which was revealed fourteen centuries ago?

·        Could this Quran have been authored by Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, or by any other human being?

The only possible answer is that this Quran must be the literal word of God, revealed by Him.



Footnotes:

[1] Note: The occupations of all the scientists mentioned in this web site were last updated in 1997.

[2] Narrated in Saheeh Muslim #2643, and Saheeh Al-Bukhari #3208.

Note: What is between these special brackets {…} in this guide is a translation of what the Prophet Muhammad, may God praise him, said.  Also note that this symbol # used in the footnotes, indicates the number of the hadeeth.  A hadeeth is a reliably transmitted report by the Prophet Muhammad’s companions of what he said, did, or approved of.

[3] Narrated in Saheeh Muslim #2645.

[4] The Prophet Muhammad, may God praise him, was illiterate.  He could not read nor write, but he dictated the Quran to his Companions and commanded some of them to write it down

* * * * * *

This is one example of the scientific miracles of the Quran.

In the Holy Quran, God speaks about the stages of man’s embryonic development:

“We created man from an extract of clay.  Then We made him as a drop in a place of settlement, firmly fixed.  Then We made the drop into an alaqah (leech, suspended thing, and blood clot), then We made the alaqah into a mudghah (chewed substance)…” (Quran 23:12-14)

 

Literally, the Arabic word alaqah has three meanings: (1) leech, (2) suspended thing, and (3) blood clot.

In comparing a leech to an embryo in the alaqah stage, we find similarity between the two[1]  as we can see in figure 1.  Also, the embryo at this stage obtains nourishment from the blood of the mother, similar to the leech, which feeds on the blood of others.[2]

Figure 1: Drawings illustrating the similarities in appearance between a leech and a human embryo at the alaqah stage. (Leech drawing from Human Development as Described in the Quran and Sunnah, Moore and others, p. 37, modified from Integrated Principles of Zoology, Hickman and others.  Embryo drawing from The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 73.)

 

The second meaning of the word alaqah is “suspended thing.”  This is what we can see in figures 2 and 3, the suspension of the embryo, during the alaqah stage, in the womb of the mother.

Figure 2: We can see in this diagram the suspension of an embryo during the alaqah stage in the womb (uterus) of the mother. (The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 66.)

 

Figure 3: In this photomicrograph, we can see the suspension of an embryo (marked B) during the alaqah stage (about 15 days old) in the womb of the mother.  The actual size of the embryo is about 0.6 mm. (The Developing Human, Moore, 3rd ed., p. 66, from Histology, Leeson and Leeson.)

 

The third meaning of the word alaqah is “blood clot.”  We find that the external appearance of the embryo and its sacs during the alaqah stage is similar to that of a blood clot.  This is due to the presence of relatively large amounts of blood present in the embryo during this stage[3]  (see figure 4).  Also during this stage, the blood in the embryo does not circulate until the end of the third week.[4]  Thus, the embryo at this stage is like a clot of blood.

 

 

Figure 4: Diagram of the primitive cardiovascular system in an embryo during the alaqah stage.  The external appearance of the embryo and its sacs is similar to that of a blood clot, due to the presence of relatively large amounts of blood present in the embryo. (The Developing Human, Moore, 5th ed., p. 65.)

 

So the three meanings of the word alaqah correspond accurately to the descriptions of the embryo at the alaqah stage.

The next stage mentioned in the verse is the mudghah stage.  The Arabic word mudghah means “chewed substance.”  If one were to take a piece of gum and chew it in his or her mouth and then compare it with an embryo at the mudghah stage, we would conclude that the embryo at the mudghah stage acquires the appearance of a chewed substance.  This is because of the somites at the back of the embryo that “somewhat resemble teethmarks in a chewed substance.”[5] (see figures 5 and 6).

Figure 5: Photograph of an embryo at the mudghah stage (28 days old).  The embryo at this stage acquires the appearance of a chewed substance, because the somites at the back of the embryo somewhat resemble teeth marks in a chewed substance.  The actual size of the embryo is 4 mm. (The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 82, from Professor Hideo Nishimura, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan.)

 

Figure 6: When comparing the appearance of an embryo at the mudghah stage with a piece of gum that has been chewed, we find similarity between the two.

A)        Drawing of an embryo at the mudghah stage.  We can see here the somites at the back of the embryo that look like teeth marks. (The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 79.)

B)        Photograph of a piece of gum that has been chewed.

 

How could Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, have possibly known all this 1400 years ago, when scientists have only recently discovered this using advanced equipment and powerful microscopes which did not exist at that time?  Hamm and Leeuwenhoek were the first scientists to observe human sperm cells (spermatozoa) using an improved microscope in 1677 (more than 1000 years after Muhammad).  They mistakenly thought that the sperm cell contained a miniature preformed human being that grew when it was deposited in the female genital tract.[6]

Professor Emeritus Keith L. Moore[7]  is one of the world’s most prominent scientists in the fields of anatomy and embryology and is the author of the book entitled The Developing Human, which has been translated into eight languages.  This book is a scientific reference work and was chosen by a special committee in the United States as the best book authored by one person.  Dr. Keith Moore is Professor Emeritus of Anatomy and Cell Biology at the University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada.  There, he was Associate Dean of Basic Sciences at the Faculty of Medicine and for 8 years was the Chairman of the Department of Anatomy.  In 1984, he received the most distinguished award presented in the field of anatomy in Canada, the J.C.B. Grant Award from the Canadian Association of Anatomists.  He has directed many international associations, such as the Canadian and American Association of Anatomists and the Council of the Union of Biological Sciences.

In 1981, during the Seventh Medical Conference in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, Professor Moore said: “It has been a great pleasure for me to help clarify statements in the Quran about human development.  It is clear to me that these statements must have come to Muhammad from God, because almost all of this knowledge was not discovered until many centuries later.  This proves to me that Muhammad must have been a messenger of God.”[8] (To view the RealPlayer video of this comment click here).

Consequently, Professor Moore was asked the following question: “Does this mean that you believe that the Quran is the word of God?”  He replied: “I find no difficulty in accepting this.”[9]

During one conference, Professor Moore stated: “….Because the staging of human embryos is complex, owing to the continuous process of change during development, it is proposed that a new system of classification could be developed using the terms mentioned in the Quran and Sunnah (what Muhammad, may the mercy and blessings of God be upon him, said, did, or approved of).  The proposed system is simple, comprehensive, and conforms with present embryological knowledge.  The intensive studies of the Quran and hadeeth (reliably transmitted reports by the Prophet Muhammad’s companions of what he said, did, or approved of) in the last four years have revealed a system for classifying human embryos that is amazing since it was recorded in the seventh century A.D.  Although Aristotle, the founder of the science of embryology, realized that chick embryos developed in stages from his studies of hen’s eggs in the fourth century B.C., he did not give any details about these stages.  As far as it is known from the history of embryology, little was known about the staging and classification of human embryos until the twentieth century.  For this reason, the descriptions of the human embryo in the Quran cannot be based on scientific knowledge in the seventh century.  The only reasonable conclusion is: these descriptions were revealed to Muhammad from God.  He could not have known such details because he was an illiterate man with absolutely no scientific training.”[10] (View the RealPlayer video of this comment).



Footnotes:

[1] The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 8.

[2] Human Development as Described in the Quran and Sunnah, Moore and others, p. 36.

[3] Human Development as Described in the Quran and Sunnah, Moore and others, pp. 37-38.

[4] The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 65.

[5] The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 8.

[6] The Developing Human, Moore and Persaud, 5th ed., p. 9.

[7] Note: The occupations of all the scientists mentioned in this web site were last updated in 1997.

[8] The reference for this saying is This is the Truth (videotape).  For a copy of this videotape, please visit www.islam-guide.com/truth.htm

[9] This is the Truth (videotape).

[10] This is the Truth (videotape).  For a copy, see footnote no. 9.

http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/216/

Happy Eid

In the name of Allah the most beneficient, the most merciful.

I would like to wish everyone a happy Eid. Please have a wonderful Eid with your families and please keep in  mind the many suffering people in the world and perhaps after this Eid we can all do something in our own individual ways to help those less fortunate than us and make the world a better place.

“You will not attain righteousness, unless you give of that which you love” (Translation of the Holy Quran, 3:92)

“None of you truly believes until you love for your  brother, what you love for yourself.” (Hadith i.e. saying of the prophet peace be upon him).

“Anyone who looks after and works for a widow and a poor person is like a warrior fighting for Allah’s cause, or like a person who fasts during the day and prays all night” (Hadith of the prophet, peace be upon him, reported in Bukhari)None”

“If any Muslim plants something or sows seed from which a man, a bird or an animal eats, it counts as a charity for him. “(Hadith of the prophet, peace be upon him, from Bukhari)ou will truly belie” (3:92)

Many of us constantly focus on what we do not have and our “problems” but we never think of those far worse off than us. What did we ever do for them? We – including myself first and foremost – should recognize how greedy and selfish we can be and realize that we should spend more time trying to help others whether that be through money or action. Have a great Eid and please resolve to become a better person and a better Muslim.

– Faatih.

 

 

Famous “atheist” declares that God exists.

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“As people have certainly been influenced by me, I want to try and correct the enormous damage I may have done.” (Anthony Flew)

The newspapers these days are echoing with these regret-filled words by Antony Flew, in his time a well-known atheist philosopher.  The 81-year-old British professor of philosophy Flew chose to become an atheist at the age of 15, and first made a name for himself in the academic field with a paper published in 1950.  In the 54 years that followed, he defended atheism as a teacher at the universities of Oxford, Aberdeen, Keele and Reading, at many American and Canadian universities he visited, in debates, books, lecture halls and articles.  In recent days, however, Flew has announced that he has abandoned this error and accepts that the universe was created.

The decisive factor in this radical change of view is the clear and definitive evidence revealed by science on the subject of creation.  Flew realized, in the face of the information-based complexity of life, that the true origin of life is intelligent design and that the atheism he had espoused for 66 years was a discredited philosophy.

Flew announced the scientific reasons underlying this change in belief in these terms:

“Biologists’ investigation of DNA has shown, by the almost unbelievable complexity of the arrangements which are needed to produce [life], that intelligence must have been involved.”[1]

“It has become inordinately difficult even to begin to think about constructing a naturalistic theory of the evolution of that first reproducing organism.”[2]

“I have been persuaded that it is simply out of the question that the first living matter evolved out of dead matter and then developed into an extraordinarily complicated creature.”[3]

The DNA research which Flew cites as a fundamental reason for his change of opinion has indeed revealed striking facts about creation.  The helix shape of the DNA molecule, its possession of the genetic code, the nucleotide strings that refute blind chance, the storage of encyclopedic quantities of information and many other striking findings have revealed that the structure and functions of this molecule were arranged for life with a special design.  Comments by scientists concerned with DNA research bear witness to this fact.

Francis Crick, for instance, one of the scientists who revealed the helix shape of DNA admitted in the face of the findings regarding DNA that the origin of life indicated a miracle:

An honest man, armed with all the knowledge available to us now, could only state that in some sense, the origin of life appears at the moment to be almost a miracle, so many are the conditions which would have had to have been satisfied to get it going.[4]

Based on his calculations, Led Adleman of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles has stated that one gram of DNA can store as much information as a trillion compact discs.[5]  Gene Myers, a scientist employed on the Human Genome Project, has said the following in the face of the miraculous arrangements he witnessed:

“What really astounds me is the architecture of life… The system is extremely complex.  It’s like it was designed… There’s a huge intelligence there.”[6]

The most striking fact about DNA is that the existence of the coded genetic information can definitely not be explained in terms of matter and energy or natural laws.  Dr. Werner Gitt, a professor at the German Federal Institute of Physics and Technology, has said this on the subject:

A code system is always the result of a mental process… It should be emphasized that matter as such is unable to generate any code.  All experiences indicate that a thinking being voluntarily exercising his own free will, cognition, and creativity, is required… There is no known natural law through which matter can give rise to information, neither is any physical process or material phenomenon known that can do this.[7]

Creationist scientists and philosophers played a major role in Flew’s acceptance of intelligent design, backed up by all these findings.  In recent times Flew participated in debates with scientists and philosophers who were proponents of creation, and exchanged ideas with them.  The final turning point in that process was a discussion organized by the Institute for Metascientific Research in Texas in May, 2003.  Professor Flew participated in the discussion together with the author, Roy Abraham Varghese, a physicist, and the molecular biologist, Gerald Schroeder.  Flew was impressed by the weight of the scientific evidence in favor of creation and by the convincing nature of his opponents’ arguments and abandoned atheism as an idea in the period following that discussion.  In a letter he wrote for the August-September, 2003, edition of the British magazine Philosophy Now, he recommended Schroeder’s book “The Hidden Face of God: Science Reveals the Ultimate Truth” and Varghese’s book “The Wonderful World.”[8]  During an interview with the professor of philosophy and theology Gary R. Habermas, who also played a major role in his change of mind,[9]  and also on the video “Has Science Discovered God?”  he openly stated that he believed in intelligent design.

The “Intelligence Pervading the Universe” and the Collapse of Atheism

In the face of all the scientific developments outlined above, the acceptance of intelligent design by Anthony Flew, famous for defending atheism for many years, reflects a final scene in the process of collapse which atheism is being subjected to Modern science has revealed the existence of an “intelligence pervading the universe,” thus leaving atheism out of the equation.

In his book “The Hidden Face of God,” Gerald Schroeder, one of the creationist scientists who influenced Flew, writes:

A single consciousness, a universal wisdom, pervades the universe.  The discoveries of science, those that search the quantum nature of subatomic matter, have moved us to the brink of a startling realization: all existence is the expression of this wisdom.  In the laboratories we experience it as information that first physically articulated as energy and then condensed into the form of matter.  Every particle, every being, from atom to human, appears to represent a level of information, of wisdom.[10]

Scientific research into both the functioning of the cell and the subatomic particles of matter has revealed this fact in an indisputable manner: Life and the universe were brought into being from nothing by the will of an entity possessed of a superior mind and wisdom.  There is no doubt that the possessor of that knowledge and mind that designed the universe at all levels is Almighty God.  God reveals these truths in many verses of the Quran.



Footnotes:

[1] Richard N. Ostling, “Lifelong atheist changes mind about divine creator,” The Washington Times 10 December 2004; (http://washingtontimes.com/national/20041209-113212-2782r.htm.)

[2] Antony Flew, “Letter from Antony Flew on Darwinism and Theology,” Philosophy Now; (http://www.philosophynow.org/issue47/47flew.htm.)

[3] Stuart Wavell and Will Iredale, “Sorry, says atheist-in-chief, I do believe in God after all,” The Sunday Times, 12 December 2004; (http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2087-1400368,00.html)

[4] Francis Crick, Life Itself: Its Origin and Nature, New York: Simon & Schuster, 1981, p. 88

[5] John Whitfield, “Physicists plunder life’s tool chest”, 24 April 2003; (http://www.nature.com/nsu/030421/030421-6.html)

[6] San Francisco Chronicle, 19 February, 2001

[7] Werner Gitt, In the Beginning Was Information, CLV, Bielenfeld, Germany, pp. 64-7, 79

[8] Antony Flew, “Letter from Antony Flew on Darwinism and Theology,” Philosophy Now; (http://www.philosophynow.org/issue47/47flew.htm.)

[9] “Atheist Becomes Theist: Exclusive Interview with Former Atheist Antony Flew;” (http://www.biola.edu/antonyflew/index.cfm.)

[10] Gerald Schroeder, The Hidden Face of God, Touchstone, New York, 2001, p. xi.



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