PDA

View Full Version : Qur'anic desciption of the Ocean



Abdul Fattah
06-28-2006, 08:33 PM
At wilberhums request (by pm) I will post a single item out of the work of harun yahya concearning the miracles in the Qur'an. The idea is that Wilberhum then takes a try to show us how this is actually pseudo-science and full of flaws and mistakes.
I wish you good luck, let's both hope the truth prevails.

Or [the unbelievers' state] are like the darkness of a fathomless sea which is covered by waves above which are waves above which are clouds, layers of darkness, one upon the other. If he puts out his hand, he can scarcely see it. Those Allah gives no light to, they have no light. (Qur'an, 24:40)

Measurements made with today's technology have revealed that between 3 and 30 percent of the sunlight is reflected at the surface of the sea. Then, almost all of the seven colours of the light spectrum are absorbed, one after another, in the first 200 metres, except for blue light. Below a depth of 1,000 metres, there is no light at all. This scientific fact was pointed out in Sura Nur 40 in the Qur'an 1,400 years ago.

In deep seas and oceans, the darkness is found at a depth of 200 meters and deeper. At this depth, there is almost no light, and below a depth of 1,000 meters there is no light at all.

Today, we know about the general formation of the sea, the characteristics of the living things in it, its salinity, as well as the amount of water it contains, and its surface area and depth. Submarines and special equipment, developed with modern technology, have enabled scientists to obtain such information.

The second picture represents internal waves at interface between two layers of water of different densities. The lower layer is denser than the upper one. This scientific fact, declared in Sura Nur 40 of the Qur'an 14 centuries ago, has been discovered by today's scientists only very recently.

Human beings are not able to dive to a depth of more than 70 meters without the aid of special equipment. They cannot survive unaided in the dark depths of the oceans, such as at a depth of 200 meters. For these reasons, scientists have only recently been able to discover detailed information about the seas. However, that the depth of the sea is dark was revealed in the Qur'an 1,400 years ago. It is certainly one of the miracles of the Qur'an that such information was given at a time where no equipment to enable man to dive into the depths of the oceans was available.

In addition, the statement in Surat an-Nur 40 "…like the darkness of a fathomless sea which is covered by waves above which are waves above which are clouds…" draws our attention to another miracle of the Qur'an.

Scientists have only recently discovered that there are sub-surface waves, which "occur on density interfaces between layers of different densities." These internal waves cover the deep waters of seas and oceans because deep water has a higher density than the water above it. Internal waves act like surface waves. They can break, just like surface waves. Internal waves cannot be discerned by the human eye, but they can be detected by studying temperature or salinity changes at a given location.62

The statements in the Qur'an run parallel precisely the above explanation. Certainly, this fact, which scientists has discovered very recently, shows once again that the Qur'an is the word of Allah.
Reply

Login/Register to hide ads. Scroll down for more posts
wilberhum
06-28-2006, 10:12 PM
Boy, much to do about nothing.
(Or (the unbelievers' state) are like the darkness of a fathomless sea which is covered by waves above which are waves above which are clouds, layers of darkness, one upon the other. If he puts out his hand, he can scarcely see it. Those God gives no light to, they have no light.) (The Qur'an, 24:40)
First, it is talking about unbelievers. It uses the sea as an example. The message is not about the sea. There are no measurements as implied. There is no separation of light as stated. The quote is accurate; the sea is covered by waves. Is that a new scientific fact? Above are clouds, another amazing fact. I must assume that it was only resent that a scientist looked up. “If he puts out his hand, he can scarcely see it”. Well now that depends. I have been in water that you couldn’t see 6 inches and I have been in water that you can see over 50 feet down.
Sorry man, I just have a hard time seeing a miracle or a newly discovered scientific fact. It all seams like facts that would have been know by early man.
Reply

Abdul Fattah
06-29-2006, 04:28 PM
Originally Posted by wilberhum
Boy, much to do about nothing.

First, it is talking about unbelievers. It uses the sea as an example. The message is not about the sea. There are no measurements as implied. There is no separation of light as stated. The quote is accurate; the sea is covered by waves. Is that a new scientific fact? Above are clouds, another amazing fact. I must assume that it was only resent that a scientist looked up. “If he puts out his hand, he can scarcely see it”. Well now that depends. I have been in water that you couldn’t see 6 inches and I have been in water that you can see over 50 feet down.
Sorry man, I just have a hard time seeing a miracle or a newly discovered scientific fact. It all seams like facts that would have been know by early man.
First of all, It's not about wheter you accept it or not, your challange was to post a single one, so you could show me it was scientificly innacurate. I guess you went over your head...

Also note that the wonderfullness of this verse is not that a peson can or cannot see in water. It's that it implies that when underwater, there are several waves above you! These undercurrents aren't that easily detected. The second part of the miracle it is that it suggests each wave makes it a lil darker! Your commenet on clear vs. dirty water has nothing to do with it. And if you have a hard time accepting this, well that's your personal problem. It isn't ground however to claim it is false, let alone question it's scientific accuracy.

Anyway, I guess you learned your lesson; to give the opposition the benefit of the doubt rather then assuming they must be scientificly illeterate.
Reply

wilberhum
06-29-2006, 06:50 PM
Steve
Talk about not seeing the forest for all the trees.
It has nothing to do with whether or not I believe what is in the Quran.
It has nothing to do with whether the Quran is right or wrong.
It has nothing to do with whether the verse has wonderfulness or not.
It has nothing to do with what implies.
In fact it has nothing to do with the Quran.

It is all about Harun Yahya.
There is nothing in the quote to support what Harun Yahya Clams. Harun Yahya has taken a small Quote from the Quran, twisted and turned until it is totally unrecognizable and uses that as pseudo proof to support what is obviously not there.

It is not my intention to make a negative statement about anything other than Adnan Oktar.

There is no way an open mind can bridge the gap from the quote to his claims.
Reply

Welcome, Guest!
Hey there! Looks like you're enjoying the discussion, but you're not signed up for an account.

When you create an account, you can participate in the discussions and share your thoughts. You also get notifications, here and via email, whenever new posts are made. And you can like posts and make new friends.
Sign Up
Abdul Fattah
06-29-2006, 07:49 PM
Ok want to be stuborn, let's play a game of what does and doesn't it say.

1. Does the verse claim that there is no light on the bottem of the sea?
2. Does the verse claim that there are multiple waves above another?
3. Does the verse say the waves "cover" from light, as a cloud?

3 Claims by that verse which are scientificly accurate and need no imagination to recognise. It's as simple as 1+1
Want to deny it? Be my guest, but I suggest you do that in a forum with a lower average intelligent because here you're just making a fool out of yourself.
Reply

wilberhum
06-29-2006, 09:14 PM
Steve
Ok want to be stuborn, let's play a game of what does and doesn't it say.
You still don’t get it. [MAD]I don’t care what it does and doesn’t say.[/MAD]
I made my point “Harun Yahya’s Invitation to Truth” is any thing but. In fact many of his articles are an “Invention” of his pseudo proof. He is an insult to intelligence. He is an embarrassment and insult to all Muslims.
Your failure to recognize that is a very strong indicator that you are incapable of independent thought and analysis.

Read the quote and with an open mind tell me that you honestly believe that it supports Harun Yahya’s interpretation.
Reply

czgibson
06-29-2006, 09:25 PM
Greetings Steve,

I'm afraid to say that I think you're being quite silly here. Surely someone of your intelligence can recognise the idiocy of Harun Yahya's work?

Originally Posted by steve
Also note that the wonderfullness of this verse is not that a peson can or cannot see in water. It's that it implies that when underwater, there are several waves above you! These undercurrents aren't that easily detected.
So there are waves above other waves. Why would that be difficult for a 7th century person to detect? I can feel undercurrents when I'm paddling at the seaside.

The second part of the miracle it is that it suggests each wave makes it a lil darker!
Where exactly does the verse suggest this?

Originally Posted by Harun Yahya
Below a depth of 1,000 metres, there is no light at all. This scientific fact was pointed out in Sura Nur 40 in the Qur'an 1,400 years ago.
The verse does not state this at all. Firstly, it says "If he puts out his hand, he can scarcely see it." That does not equal 'no light', which is mentioned in the next sentence as if it is applicable to "he can scarcely see it", which is a simple error. Secondly, nowhere does the text of the Qur'an give any measurement about the depth of the sea.

It is quite plain that someone has simply looked for verses which could be contrived to match scientific facts after those facts have been discovered. The verse here does not contain the scientific knowledge that Mr Oktar claims it does.

Steve, quite frankly I'm surprised you give this banality any credence whatsoever.

Peace
Reply

Abdul Fattah
06-29-2006, 10:11 PM
@Wilberhum
Originally Posted by wilberhum
Steve
You still don’t get it. I don’t care what it does and doesn’t say.
Yet you keep insisting what it "doesn't" say.

I made my point “Harun Yahya’s Invitation to Truth” is any thing but. In fact many of his articles are an “Invention” of his pseudo proof. He is an insult to intelligence. He is an embarrassment and insult to all Muslims.
No you didn't in fact you walked right out of your own challange. You challanged me to select a single point of it, and then you would proof it to be unscientific. But instead you have been rambling on about not accepting it, and lousy interpretation.

Your failure to recognize that is a very strong indicator that you are incapable of independent thought and analysis.
No it is teh other way around. It is you who fails to recognise the obvious suggestions of that verse, simply because you cannot accept a qur'anic verse to bear unexplainable knowledge.

Read the quote and with an open mind tell me that you honestly believe that it supports Harun Yahya’s interpretation.
I honestly believe this verse displays a profound knowledge of difraction of sunlight by waves.

@czgibson
I'm afraid to say that I think you're being quite silly here. Surely someone of your intelligence can recognise the idiocy of Harun Yahya's work?
When it comes to evolution, atheism, marxism, etc, yes, then his work is highly inacurate. But this is not the case here. What is idiotic about the miracles of the qur'an? bring me your refutations before you get all judgmental :grumbling

So there are waves above other waves. Why would that be difficult for a 7th century person to detect? I can feel undercurrents when I'm paddling at the seaside.
you might notice a stronger pull on your paddle the deeper you go but that is due to teh leverage effect. You can test this out at home if you have the equipment. Put a bowling ball or something equally heavy on the floor. Now take a broom and hold the top of the broom and try to sweep the object away. Now try it again while holding the broom on the bottem, you'll finally get some movement. :)
Also note that the effect were talking about here is not so much the difrent speed of teh waves, but rather at a certain depth due to the pressure certain layers will have a much higher density. This creates a natural film braking the light. And you need to get at least 50m to get the first effect. These waves are also unvisable. we do not see any visable seperation between the two densities of water.


The second part of the miracle it is that it suggests each wave makes it a lil darker!
Where exactly does the verse suggest this?
I thought you were an english teacher? The verse compares teh unbeliever's state to the darkness of the sea. then it goes on explaining theis darkness saying: which is covered by waves above which are waves above which are clouds,
In doing so already corelating them with teh darkness of the sea. and to top it of it even repeats:
layers of darkness, one upon the other

The verse does not state this at all. Firstly, it says "If he puts out his hand, he can scarcely see it." That does not equal 'no light', which is mentioned in the next sentence as if it is applicable to "he can scarcely see it", which is a simple error. Secondly, nowhere does the text of the Qur'an give any measurement about the depth of the sea.
It doesn't give an exact measurement, but it does claim that the bottem of teh sea is dark, due to this waves. All you have to do is read. Perhaps you should ponder upon this verse to:

Allah disdains not to use the similitude of things, lowest as well as highest. Those who believe know that it is truth from their Lord; but those who reject Faith say: "What means Allah by this similitude?" By it He causes many to stray, and many He leads into the right path; but He causes not to stray, except those who forsake (the path),-


It is quite plain that someone has simply looked for verses which could be contrived to match scientific facts after those facts have been discovered. The verse here does not contain the scientific knowledge that Mr Oktar claims it does.
Nobody ever claimed the qur'an is a scientific book. But the verse does testify of a profound knowledge of these matters. you can say it's coincedantal ,but there 's plenty of more where that comes from.

Steve, quite frankly I'm surprised you give this banality any credence whatsoever.
As am I surprised by teh narrow-midedness of somebody claiming to be agnostic.:thumbs_do
Oh wait I see it's changed to atheist....
Reply

wilberhum
06-29-2006, 10:25 PM
Your failure to recognize that is a very strong indicator that you are incapable of independent thought and analysis
Now you have proved my point.
Reply

Abdul Fattah
06-30-2006, 01:25 PM
Or maybe you just proved to be narrowminded.
Somebody has a difrent opinion then your's so you automaticly conclude that he is incapable of thinking. Quite vain wouldn't you say? Maybe for an encore you could also "prove" us that black and white does not exist. Just be carefull not to get killed in teh next zebra crossing.
Reply

wilberhum
06-30-2006, 04:30 PM
Steve,
I don’t see the point. With what you read into things.
If I said tree.
You would think I was talking about a forest and how the leaves form a barrier that filters out the light that allows fungus to grow on the forest floor and how that holds moisture that helps the tree grow.
When all I meant was a “Tree”.
Reply

czgibson
06-30-2006, 04:46 PM
Originally Posted by steve
@czgibson
When it comes to evolution, atheism, marxism, etc, yes, then his work is highly inacurate. But this is not the case here. What is idiotic about the miracles of the qur'an? bring me your refutations before you get all judgmental :grumbling
You can see my arguments below, as well as in other threads about the "scientific miracles" argument. I've also written about Harun Yahya's errors at some length in other threads.

you might notice a stronger pull on your paddle the deeper you go but that is due to teh leverage effect. You can test this out at home if you have the equipment. Put a bowling ball or something equally heavy on the floor. Now take a broom and hold the top of the broom and try to sweep the object away. Now try it again while holding the broom on the bottem, you'll finally get some movement. :)
I don't understand what this experiment has to do with our discussion.

Also note that the effect were talking about here is not so much the difrent speed of teh waves, but rather at a certain depth due to the pressure certain layers will have a much higher density. This creates a natural film braking the light. And you need to get at least 50m to get the first effect. These waves are also unvisable. we do not see any visable seperation between the two densities of water.
This is the effect you're talking about, yes, but it's not mentioned anywhere in the Qur'an, is it?

I thought you were an english teacher?
I am indeed an English teacher. One of my specialities is close textual analysis, and I can state quite categorically that the verse we're discussing absolutely does not say what you claim it does.

The verse compares teh unbeliever's state to the darkness of the sea. then it goes on explaining theis darkness saying: which is covered by waves above which are waves above which are clouds,
In doing so already corelating them with teh darkness of the sea. and to top it of it even repeats:
layers of darkness, one upon the other
OK, so now can you show me where it says that "each wave makes it a lil darker"?

It doesn't give an exact measurement, but it does claim that the bottem of teh sea is dark, due to this waves. All you have to do is read. Perhaps you should ponder upon this verse to:
Please don't change the subject.

The verse makes no reference to the bottom of the sea. In fact, the sea is described as "fathomless", i.e. too deep to be measured.

Again, I don't understand how the information in this verse impresses you as a piece of prescience. How difficult would it be for a 7th century person to find out these things?

Nobody ever claimed the qur'an is a scientific book. But the verse does testify of a profound knowledge of these matters. you can say it's coincedantal ,but there 's plenty of more where that comes from.
1. The knowledge contained in the verse is not profound. It says that there are waves on top of other waves, and there are varying amounts of light below the surface of the sea (although it makes no reference to how depth affects this).

2. There is no coincidence to explain, since the verse clearly does not contain the "amazing" scientific knowledge you claim it does.

As am I surprised by teh narrow-midedness of somebody claiming to be agnostic.:thumbs_do
Oh wait I see it's changed to atheist....
I've been an atheist since long before coming on this forum, and my profile has always indicated this. You must be thinking of someone else.

I'm sorry you think I'm being narrow-minded. I'm simply calling it as I see it. For what it's worth, I think that you are eager to stretch you interpretation of the Qur'an because you have so much emotional baggage invested in it as a result of your belief that it is a miraculous book, and this has allowed you to blunt your logical faculties. You're free to believe what you like, of course.

Peace
Reply

Abdul Fattah
06-30-2006, 08:30 PM
@wilberhum
Originally Posted by wilberhum
Steve,
I don’t see the point. With what you read into things.
If I said tree.
You would think I was talking about a forest and how the leaves form a barrier that filters out the light that allows fungus to grow on the forest floor and how that holds moisture that helps the tree grow.
When all I meant was a “Tree”.
You're comparison is completely unrepresentative. it would translate into sombody saying sea, and th other person assuming he means multiple ways blocking out light. But teh verse says a lot more then just sea. So your comparison is completely unrepresantive.

@czgibson

you might notice a stronger pull on your paddle the deeper you go but that is due to teh leverage effect. You can test this out at home if you have the equipment. Put a bowling ball or something equally heavy on the floor. Now take a broom and hold the top of the broom and try to sweep the object away. Now try it again while holding the broom on the bottem, you'll finally get some movement.

I don't understand what this experiment has to do with our discussion.
It shows that your argument was wrong, one cannot detect these undercurrents simply by the "pull" on your paddle".

Also note that the effect were talking about here is not so much the difrent speed of teh waves, but rather at a certain depth due to the pressure certain layers will have a much higher density. This creates a natural film braking the light. And you need to get at least 50m to get the first effect. These waves are also unvisable. we do not see any visable seperation between the two densities of water.

This is the effect you're talking about, yes, but it's not mentioned anywhere in the Qur'an, is it?
Not directly no, but the qur'an does say that difrent waves will act as a blockage/covering of light, making the bottem of the sea as dark as a disbeliever.

I am indeed an English teacher. One of my specialities is close textual analysis, and I can state quite categorically that the verse we're discussing absolutely does not say what you claim it does.
Perhaps you could tell us it's exact meaning then. :mmokay:

The verse compares teh unbeliever's state to the darkness of the sea. then it goes on explaining theis darkness saying: which is covered by waves above which are waves above which are clouds,
In doing so already corelating them with teh darkness of the sea. and to top it of it even repeats:
layers of darkness, one upon the other

OK, so now can you show me where it says that "each wave makes it a lil darker"?
Come on don't tell me you cannot read between teh lines. If you see spoon in one sentence and soup in the other, for what reason do you think the writer brought up the word spoon? To indicate the position of two persons laying in bed?

It doesn't give an exact measurement, but it does claim that the bottem of teh sea is dark, due to this waves. All you have to do is read. Perhaps you should ponder upon this verse to:

Please don't change the subject.
I wasn't trying to, I was trying to make you reflect deeper.

The verse makes no reference to the bottom of the sea. In fact, the sea is described as "fathomless", i.e. too deep to be measured.
Does that make any difrence in teh matter?

Again, I don't understand how the information in this verse impresses you as a piece of prescience. How difficult would it be for a 7th century person to find out these things?
Yes it was! We need equipment to dive this deep; we need fluidmechanics to research difrent waves. We need optica to understand how this refraction is correlated with darkness.

1. The knowledge contained in the verse is not profound. It says that there are waves on top of other waves, and there are varying amounts of light below the surface of the sea (although it makes no reference to how depth affects this).
It doesn't say depth affects it because it is not affected by depth directly! the phenomena is created by teh waves, therefor the depth of the phenomena is difrent depending on the amount of waves. The denser a sea, the more layers will be created in a certain depth. And teh text deos show this, it says: waves above which are waves above which are clouds, layers of darkness, one upon the other

2. There is no coincidence to explain, since the verse clearly does not contain the "amazing" scientific knowledge you claim it does.
You resemble a kid who doesn't want to eat and in his frustration throws away his fork. But that won't make the food disapear...

I've been an atheist since long before coming on this forum, and my profile has always indicated this. You must be thinking of someone else.
Ok, my mistake, i thought you said you were agnostiac in some topic, guess I was thinking of someone else.

I'm sorry you think I'm being narrow-minded. I'm simply calling it as I see it. For what it's worth, I think that you are eager to stretch you interpretation of the Qur'an because you have so much emotional baggage invested in it as a result of your belief that it is a miraculous book, and this has allowed you to blunt your logical faculties. You're free to believe what you like, of course.
That is an argument that works on both sides. I could just as easily claim that you are eager to dismiss these, and therefor stretch eth meaning of the verse so you would not have to accept the most logical interpretation to be the accurate one. For what it's worth, let me asure you that of I wouldn't have found logic in Islam, I'd never reverted. I question your biased interpretation of logic.
Reply

czgibson
06-30-2006, 09:46 PM
Hi Steve,
Originally Posted by steve
It shows that your argument was wrong, one cannot detect these undercurrents simply by the "pull" on your paddle".
How do you know which effect the Qur'an is talking about? It just says "waves above which are waves", which is vague enough to mean all sorts of things.

Not directly no
Thank you.

Perhaps you could tell us it's exact meaning then. :mmokay:
I could have a go at a paraphrase:

Or [the unbelievers' state] are like the darkness of a fathomless sea which is covered by waves above which are waves above which are clouds, layers of darkness, one upon the other. If he puts out his hand, he can scarcely see it. Those Allah gives no light to, they have no light. (Qur'an, 24:40)
The attitude of the unbelievers is compared in a simile to the darkness of a sea too deep to measure. This darkness is covered by waves upon waves, which lie beneath the clouds. The darkness exists in layers, and seems to include the clouds, since they are yoked into the same clause as the waves. A person will hardly be able to see his hand in front of him. If Allah gives a person no light, then they have no light.

The above seems a fair interpretation to me. We seem to have skipped over the strange anomaly of the inequality of 'scarcely see' and 'no light', but that's not important right now. What is important is that this verse doesn't talk about currents, densities or even the bottom of the sea. To say that it contains amazing scientific knowledge about these things is unwarranted by the text.

Come on don't tell me you cannot read between teh lines.
Of course I can. That doesn't change the fact that none of what you say is actually mentioned in the text.
Does that make any difrence in teh matter?
Well, if something is too deep to measure, it implies that the bottom of it is unknown or unreachable. So when the text describes the sea as 'fathomless', it certainly isn't talking about the bottom of it.

Yes it was! We need equipment to dive this deep; we need fluidmechanics to research difrent waves. We need optica to understand how this refraction is correlated with darkness.
Where does the Qur'an say that "this refraction is correlated with darkness"?

It doesn't say depth affects it because it is not affected by depth directly!
OK - my mistake. I just meant that the amount of light can be expected to vary in some proportion to the depth at which it's measured.

I really hope you can see that what you've mentioned here:

the phenomena is created by teh waves, therefor the depth of the phenomena is difrent depending on the amount of waves. The denser a sea, the more layers will be created in a certain depth.
is in no way implied or even suggested by the text here:

And teh text deos show this, it says: waves above which are waves above which are clouds, layers of darkness, one upon the other
You resemble a kid who doesn't want to eat and in his frustration throws away his fork. But that won't make the food disapear...
Thank you. :)

That is an argument that works on both sides. I could just as easily claim that you are eager to dismiss these, and therefor stretch eth meaning of the verse so you would not have to accept the most logical interpretation to be the accurate one.
I don't know as much about the Qur'an as you do, but tell me honestly: in my paraphrase above, am I really stretching the meaning of the verse?

For what it's worth, let me asure you that of I wouldn't have found logic in Islam, I'd never reverted.
I'm sure that's the case, and I wish you well with your belief-system.

I question your biased interpretation of logic.
I'm glad my philosophy professors didn't - I got full marks in the logic paper!

Peace
Reply

Abdul Fattah
06-30-2006, 10:01 PM
Originally Posted by czgibson
Hi Steve,
How do you know which effect the Qur'an is talking about? It just says "waves above which are waves", which is vague enough to mean all sorts of things.
My point was that the difrence inpull on you paddle is not a result of difrent "waves". It is a completely diferent phenomena, and has nothing to do with waves. So your argument that these internal waves are easely detected by your paddle was flawed.

The attitude of the unbelievers is compared in a simile to the darkness of a sea too deep to measure. This darkness is covered by waves upon waves, which lie beneath the clouds. The darkness exists in layers, and seems to include the clouds, since they are yoked into the same clause as the waves. A person will hardly be able to see his hand in front of him. If Allah gives a person no light, then they have no light.
So you agree that the verse claims that difrent waves (and clouds) are the cause of a darkness at a certain depth? And that this darkness exists because each wave blocks some of teh light just as a cloud does?
Is that by itself not already a miracle to be known in the 6th century?

What is important is that this verse doesn't talk about currents, densities or even the bottom of the sea. To say that it contains amazing scientific knowledge about these things is unwarranted by the text.
I already told you, it's not ascience book. And indeed it does not reveal us details on nature, but the verse do testify of a profound knowledge of this nature. Let me compare it this way, If I would compare the movements of meteors like a game of marbles, it suggests I know the earth is round, even though I don't say so explicetly. It's just common sense.

I don't know as much about the Qur'an as you do, but tell me honestly: in my paraphrase above, am I really stretching the meaning of the verse?
In my opinion your denying the bleeding obvious, yes.

I'm glad my philosophy professors didn't - I got full marks in the logic paper!
LOL, in that case I question your professors logic ;D
Reply

Ansar Al-'Adl
06-30-2006, 11:20 PM
The issue seems very clear to me. The verse says explictly about the ocean
mawjun min fawqihi mawj - waves, above which are waves
and dhulumâtun ba'duha fawqa bad - layers of darkness, one above the other

The first phrase affirms the internal waves in the ocean, and the second confirms their connection to the levels of light, since the darkness is in layers and not uniform.
Internal waves or solitons move, mostly unseen at the surface, along the ocean's thermoclinethe plane separating warm surface water from much colder water below. The vertical amplitude of the solitons may be hundreds of meters, but at the surface they are represented by only small, gently domed, slowly moving waves or by regions of turbulence. Coastal seiches appear when the solitons impinge on coasts. For more on unusual waves and solitons, see: Earthquakes, Tides, etc. [*]
On the surface, internal waves are all but imperceptible. Below, in the thermocline — the layer of water where temperatures drop rapidly — they are massive. Powered by tides, ranks of waves 90 meters high, 1 kilometer thick, and stretching hundreds of kilometers long race through the ocean for thousands of kilometers. From the Space Shuttle, they look like great lines on the sea. [*]
But even more importantly, where is someone, who lived in the arabian desert all his life, going to get information about ocean phenomena?
Reply

Pygoscelis
11-12-2006, 07:21 AM
Originally Posted by Ansar Al-'Adl
Is the Quran's speaking of waves upon waves (which to a person of that time would probably mean a whole lot of waves and tons of water) really the best "accurate prediction" that the Quran makes?

If so, that is pretty darn weak.
Reply

Ansar Al-'Adl
11-12-2006, 08:20 AM
Originally Posted by Pygoscelis
Is the Quran's speaking of waves upon waves (which to a person of that time would probably mean a whole lot of waves and tons of water) really the best "accurate prediction" that the Quran makes?
First, I did not make any comparison to other qur'anic scientific correlations.

Secondly, it seems you were not careful reading the linguistic analysis of the verses. I posted:
mawjun min fawqihi mawj - waves, above which are waves
and dhulumâtun ba'duha fawqa bad - layers of darkness, one above the other

The first phrase affirms the internal waves in the ocean, and the second confirms their connection to the levels of light, since the darkness is in layers and not uniform.
Internal waves or solitons move, mostly unseen at the surface, along the ocean's thermoclinethe plane separating warm surface water from much colder water below. The vertical amplitude of the solitons may be hundreds of meters, but at the surface they are represented by only small, gently domed, slowly moving waves or by regions of turbulence. Coastal seiches appear when the solitons impinge on coasts. For more on unusual waves and solitons, see: Earthquakes, Tides, etc. [*]
On the surface, internal waves are all but imperceptible. Below, in the thermocline — the layer of water where temperatures drop rapidly — they are massive. Powered by tides, ranks of waves 90 meters high, 1 kilometer thick, and stretching hundreds of kilometers long race through the ocean for thousands of kilometers. From the Space Shuttle, they look like great lines on the sea. [*]
But even more importantly, where is someone, who lived in the arabian desert all his life, going to get information about ocean phenomena?
So it is NOT just 'waves upon waves' denoting multidudes of waves - that was your mistranslation. It says waves above which are other waves - a clear reference to the internal waves described by scientists as 'imperceptible' and then it says 'layers of darkness one above the other'. This is the part of the verse you neglected to mention entirely as it connects the internal waves to layers of darkness:


I look forward to reading a more developed response.
Regards
Reply

Trumble
11-12-2006, 08:42 AM
Originally Posted by Hana_Aku
No offense, but what you're saying makes no sense....you're talking in circles.

And no offence to you, but you just aren't reading what we are saying!

LOL "even if there is some foundation for some of those interpretations, the knowledge concerned did not originate with the Qur'an..."????? Where did all this knowledge originate and who kept it a massive secret for hundreds of years after the revelation of the Qur'an?
Pygoscelis has given a couple of excellent examples showing where some of the better justified 'proofs' may well have originated even if you accept the relevant 'interpretation' of the Qur'an. There is no need for anything to be hidden or a secret (if it was in the Qur'an, how could it be secret?). We are talking about a few isolated 'facts', not some vast fountain of scientific knowledge.

Again, no 'luck' is involved. The verses just don't say what 'believers' would like them to. Ansar's waves are yet another example. The link between

mawjun min fawqihi mawj - waves, above which are waves
dhulumâtun ba'duha fawqa bad - layers of darkness, one above the other
and

The first phrase affirms the internal waves in the ocean, and the second confirms their connection to the levels of light, since the darkness is in layers and not uniform.
Internal waves or solitons move, mostly unseen at the surface, along the ocean's thermoclinethe plane separating warm surface water from much colder water below. The vertical amplitude of the solitons may be hundreds of meters, but at the surface they are represented by only small, gently domed, slowly moving waves or by regions of turbulence. Coastal seiches appear when the solitons impinge on coasts. For more on unusual waves and solitons, see: Earthquakes, Tides, etc.[*]
On the surface, internal waves are all but imperceptible. Below, in the thermocline — the layer of water where temperatures drop rapidly — they are massive. Powered by tides, ranks of waves 90 meters high, 1 kilometer thick, and stretching hundreds of kilometers long race through the ocean for thousands of kilometers. From the Space Shuttle, they look like great lines on the sea.[*]
is virtually non-existent... It's just piling scientific fact on top of very little in the seeming hope people will think all that fact is somehow stated or implied by the very little. But it isn't. The first phrase itself does not 'affirm' anything, it is the selected interpretation which does that. And as is usually the case, this interpretation was only made after a relevant bit of science came along that could be squeezed in if the Qur'anic phrases were stretched a little. Or indeed a lot.

What do the verses actually say? "Waves, above which are waves". Anyone used to the ocean knows there are both currents under the water and waves on top of it. How do we know that isn't what was meant - something known to all mariners of the time? Pygoscelis explanation is just a plausible, and cannot be comfortably dismissed unless you are totally aware of the assorted nuances of colloquial Arabic in use at that time and place. Nobody alive is. "Layers of darkness, one above the other". I assume that means layers of varying degrees of darkness. Or, it gets darker the deeper you go. Any free-diver could tell you that. But solitons? Thermoclines? Coastal seiches? NONE of that is there. The internal waves may well be visible from space and all the rest of it, but there is nothing showing that they are what is being talked about. The verses could mean anything.. and you really can't reject simple answers in favour of a far more complicated one and then claim it represents 'proof' of anything.

But even more importantly, where is someone, who lived in the arabian desert all his life, going to get information about ocean phenomena?
Maybe he talked to sailors and fishermen?! He was illiterate, but certainly was an intellectual giant who would have had no trouble recalling and reproducing what he may have picked up in casual conversation. Mecca was at the centre of the trading routes in the region... all sorts of people from all sorts of backgrounds live in and travel through such places. And it really isn't THAT far from the sea, even if Mohammed had never seen it. Again, no 'proof' of anything, and not even convincing evidence.
Reply

Ansar Al-'Adl
11-12-2006, 05:27 PM
Hello Trumble,
Thanks for your response.
Originally Posted by Trumble
What do the verses actually say? "Waves, above which are waves". Anyone used to the ocean knows there are both currents under the water and waves on top of it. How do we know that isn't what was meant - something known to all mariners of the time?
I'm afraid you're wrong Trumble:
John Scott Russell, in the 19. th. century,. was the first to observe internal waves. (Russell, 1838, 1844)
This isn't just currents we're speaking about here. The verse is so explicit there is no room for alternate interpretations. WAVES ABOVE WHICH ARE WAVES, ABOVE WHICH ARE CLOUDS. So the waves are above one another in the same manner that the clouds are above the waves - seperated at different altitudes, not just "a lot of waves" as Pygoscelis opined since that conflicts with how the clouds are mentioned in the same manner.

And the sources I quoted earlier all established that these internal waves at different altitudes are all imperceptible or unseen at the surface.
Pygoscelis explanation is just a plausible, and cannot be comfortably dismissed unless you are totally aware of the assorted nuances of colloquial Arabic in use at that time and place. Nobody alive is.
Actually they have been well preserved through many sources beyond Islamic sources; many of the classical tafsirs of the Qur'an show how different words are used by quoting ancient arab poetry and sayings. Pygoscelis is clearly incorrect on this verse since the part about the clouds negates his attempt at a figurative interpretation and validates my literal interpretation.
"Layers of darkness, one above the other". I assume that means layers of varying degrees of darkness. Or, it gets darker the deeper you go. Any free-diver could tell you that.
I'm afraid you're wrong here as well.
The darkness in deep seas and oceans is found around a depth of 200 meters and below. At this depth, there is almost no light (see figure 15). Below a depth of 1000 meters there is no light at all.1 Human beings are not able to dive more than forty meters without the aid of submarines or special equipment. Human beings cannot survive unaided in the deep dark part of the oceans, such as at a depth of 200 meters.
So the varying degrees of darkness, as you put it, would be unknown to any diver who did not take special equipment to enable them to go to 200 meters below the surface.
But solitons? Thermoclines? Coastal seiches? NONE of that is there.
The quotations were used to show how these internal waves are 'unseen' and 'imperceptible' at the surface.
The internal waves may well be visible from space and all the rest of it, but there is nothing showing that they are what is being talked about. The verses could mean anything.. and you really can't reject simple answers in favour of a far more complicated one and then claim it represents 'proof' of anything.
That is exactly what I am saying. The simplest way to appraoch the verse is to take it exactly as it is. Waves above which are waves. The fact that the verse proves there are waves below the surface is inescapable.
Maybe he talked to sailors and fishermen?!
Who wouldn't have known about either the internal waves (which are imperceptible at the surface) nor the darkness beneath the sea (which one can find only after using special equipment to go below 200 meters). Furthermore, he wasn't living in some seaport where he would hear about ocean phenomena all the time, he was living in the arabian desert. And your argument about Makkah being a center of trade is a null point since the caravans would go to Syria in the summer and Yemen in the winter. Secondly, look at the lifestyle of Muhammad pbuh himself. He lived as a Shepherd for much of his live, and prior to Prophethood he would spend much of his time away from society contemplating. The only trade route he undertook prior to marrying Khadija went to Syria. The probability that he came across a sailor who just happened to decide to provide a random lecture about subsurface ocean phenomena, which the Prophet just happened to recall some 30 years later in Madinah when this surah was revealed, is infinitesimal.

Regards
Reply

Trumble
11-12-2006, 06:33 PM
Originally Posted by Ansar Al-'Adl

The verse is so explicit there is no room for alternate interpretations. WAVES ABOVE WHICH ARE WAVES, ABOVE WHICH ARE CLOUDS. So the waves are above one another in the same manner that the clouds are above the waves - seperated at different altitudes, not just "a lot of waves" as Pygoscelis opined since that conflicts with how the clouds are mentioned in the same manner.
I'm afraid we will have to disagree on that. No only do I believe there are other, and far more plausible, interpretations, I believe that fact is obvious to anyone addressing the issue who hasn't already made their mind up. For example, you fail to address my fairly casual suggestion of undersea currents, which fits that description just as well. Clouds, above waves, above currents. You are hardly in a position to insist that 'currents' cannot be substituted for 'waves' as you yourself have claimed that what Mohammed most likely knew about things nautical could be written on the back of a matchbox. Not to mention that, as we have already accepted that sun = lamp is a metaphor, this too could be a metaphor for anything. Insistence on the precise wording just won't work.


I'm afraid you're wrong here as well.
The darkness in deep seas and oceans is found around a depth of 200 meters and below. At this depth, there is almost no light (see figure 15). Below a depth of 1000 meters there is no light at all.1 Human beings are not able to dive more than forty meters without the aid of submarines or special equipment. Human beings cannot survive unaided in the deep dark part of the oceans, such as at a depth of 200 meters.
So the varying degrees of darkness, as you put it, would be unknown to any diver who did not take special equipment to enable them to go to 200 meters below the surface.
No, I'm not wrong. They would most certainly NOT be unknown. Varying degrees of darkness are known to any shallow depth scuba-diver or free-diver; that doesn't mean it is dark at shallower depths, but it is noticeably darker (certainly darker enough to infer the deeper you go the darker it gets), particularly if the water is less than crystal clear. Try snorkling off Plymouth sometime! :D

That is exactly what I am saying. The simplest way to approach the verse is to take it exactly as it is. Waves above which are waves. The fact that the verse proves there are waves below the surface is inescapable.
See my response above.

Furthermore, he wasn't living in some seaport where he would hear about ocean phenomena all the time, he was living in the arabian desert. And your argument about Makkah being a center of trade is a null point since the caravans would go to Syria in the summer and Yemen in the winter.
Your point is? Both have coastlines. Yemen has quite a large one. Are you telling me they didn't trade by sea or catch fish?

The probability that he came across a sailor who just happened to decide to provide a random lecture about subsurface ocean phenomena, which the Prophet just happened to recall some 15 years later in Madinah when this surah was revealed, is infinitesimal.
I disagree. He wouldn't bump into such people every day certainly, but 'infinitesimal'? No way. And that assumes, of course, that the Qur'an had no input from other people - an assumption an atheist wouldn't make.

I think you may be missing the original point of the thread, which was whether this stuff would convince atheists. Imagine yourself an atheist for a second and reflect on the two options presented. Option one. Mohammed, living in a trading town, at some time, bumped into a sailor or two and had a long chin-wag with them in a bored moment, or.. option 2. what knowledge he had was given him by an Angel who was an intermediary from a supreme being, such knowledge containing a multitude of scientific insight unknown at the time. Assuming you didn't believe in God already, i.e were you an atheist, which would you find the most probable? Me too. It's a matter of faith, not stretched and dubious 'proofs'.
Reply

Ansar Al-'Adl
11-12-2006, 08:22 PM
Greetings Trumble,
Originally Posted by Trumble
I'm afraid we will have to disagree on that. No only do I believe there are other, and far more plausible, interpretations, I believe that fact is obvious to anyone addressing the issue who hasn't already made their mind up.
Well its amusing since opponents usually criticise the far-fetched or stretched interpretation of the verses, whereas here I am suggesting taking the verse as it is while you want to replace one word with another and contrive imaginative alternative interpretations:
For example, you fail to address my fairly casual suggestion of undersea currents, which fits that description just as well. Clouds, above waves, above currents.
But the problem is it doesn't say waves above currents. It says WAVES ABOVE WAVES. And I've shown why other interpretations like Pygoscelis's conflict with the passage as it references the clouds - an argument you seem to have conceded. Secondly, I don't see how your modifications to the verse - even if they were valid - change the argument either. Which currents are you referring to? In the first hundred meters, most of the currents are just the wind-driven surface currents which take an imaginative mind to classify as "waves above waves", and they don't cause changes in the level of light that close to the surface. This page talks about other ocean currents:
http://www.physicalgeography.net/fundamentals/8q.html
You are hardly in a position to insist that 'currents' cannot be substituted for 'waves' as you yourself have claimed that what Mohammed most likely knew about things nautical could be written on the back of a matchbox.
This is clearly fallacious reasoning. Such a justification is based on an assumption that the Qur'an was his own composition and since he didn't know what he was talking about, he didn't really mean to say what he said, therefore we can substitute the wording for another wording which does not correlate with science, therefore the verse does not correlate with science. Petitio Principii!!
this too could be a metaphor for anything
It is a metaphor, in that it is an analogy. It is a metaphor for the deeds of the disbelievers but it does not compare them to some mythical or fictitious concept. It compares their deeds to a real phenomena - that of internal waves in the ocean and the varying degrees of darkness associated with them. If you alter the wording of the verse you render its analogy incoherent. The proof for this is that every classical tafsir has always looked at these verses the same way - they describe the surface waves and deep below them waves beneath the surface and far above them the clouds.
No, I'm not wrong. They would most certainly NOT be unknown. Varying degrees of darkness are known to any shallow depth scuba-diver or free-diver; that doesn't mean it is dark at shallower depths, but it is noticeably darker (certainly darker enough to infer the deeper you go the darker it gets), particularly if the water is less than crystal clear.
You wouldn't recognize varying degrees of darkness you would just see that the cloudy water appears opaque. You are in no way able to infer that there are varying degrees of darkness associated with altitude or internal waves. And people in seventh century arabia did not posses snorkels either! If I was living back then, I would have assumed the apparent lack of translucency to be due to dirty water.
Your point is? Both have coastlines. Yemen has quite a large one. Are you telling me they didn't trade by sea or catch fish?
My point is that there was no significant travelling to sea ports or other localities where discussion about ocean phenomena would be prevalent. And the Prophet pbuh never went to Yemen himself. And He lived as a shepherd and even after marriage to Khadija he would stay secluded from the society the majority of the time.
I disagree. He wouldn't bump into such people every day certainly, but 'infinitesimal'? No way. And that assumes, of course, that the Qur'an had no input from other people - an assumption an atheist wouldn't make.
Btw, it should have been 30yrs instead of 15. So if he did happen to meet someone familiar with ocean phenomena (which STILL would not comprise internal waves and varying levels of darkness) and this person did happen to start describing phenomena that were discovered in the 19th century, the Prophet would have to recall such an insignificant conversation three decades later after having endured so much persecution and only for the sake of making an analogy??? Sorry, but I'm sticking with infinitesimal.

And input from who? That's what we're discussing. Which people did he encounter who would have told him about phenomena that were only realized in the 19th century? The only one I can think of is Gabriel.
It's a matter of faith, not stretched and dubious 'proofs'.
I didn't call this singular example a proof, but taken together with everything we know about Islam, the Qur'an and the Prophet pbuh, it is one page in the massive volumes of inescapable evidence.

Regards
Reply

Trumble
11-12-2006, 09:45 PM
Originally Posted by Ansar Al-'Adl

Well its amusing since opponents usually criticise the far-fetched or stretched interpretation of the verses, whereas here I am suggesting taking the verse as it is while you want to replace one word with another and contrive imaginative alternative interpretations
Again you choose to completely miss the point, which is how convincing all this might be to an atheist. It is not the alternative interpretation which is 'imaginative', it is yours!

But the problem is it doesn't say waves above currents. It says WAVES ABOVE WAVES.
I have already explained why that is a mute point. Do you conceded that the sun is in fact a lamp? As a matter of interest did the Arabic of the time have words for both 'wave' and 'current' anyway? If it did have a word for 'current' you have answered your own next question.

Secondly, I don't see how your modifications to the verse - even if they were valid - change the argument either. Which currents are you referring to?
Erm, ever heard of tides?

This is clearly fallacious reasoning. Such a justification is based on an assumption that the Qur'an was his own composition and since he didn't know what he was talking about, he didn't really mean to say what he said, therefore we can substitute the wording for another wording which does not correlate with science, therefore the verse does not correlate with science. Petitio Principii!!
It is only a Petitio Principii if you assume that the original wording does correlate with science and was intended to correlate with science - which I do not. The assumption as to authorship is one that a non-believer would make, or at least would consider. Therefore the substitution is quite plausible.. and the overall result is a more plausible one that that Mohammed received scientific knowledge from a divinity.. unless you already believe such a divinity exists. The same is true whether the substitution is made or not... in both cases the non-God explanation will be the least unlikely to our atheist.

You are in no way able to infer that there are varying degrees of darkness associated with altitude or internal waves. And people in seventh century arabia did not posses snorkels either!
The first part is just not true with regard to easily reachable depths. The change is indeed due to 'cloudy water'. The more floating matter there is in the water above you the less light reaches you, i.e it gets darker the deeper you go even at depths not requiring snorkels or submarines. The fact that that effect has nothing to do with internal waves (it is obviously associated with depth) is irrelevant.. unless of course you assume that is what the verse refers to!

The second part obviously is true, but a snorkel is not required.

My point is that there was no significant travelling to sea ports or other localities where discussion about ocean phenomena would be prevalent. And the Prophet pbuh never went to Yemen himself. And He lived as a shepherd and even after marriage to Khadija he would stay secluded from the society the majority of the time.
You still miss that point as well. However unlikely it may have been it is certainly concievable. Simple application of Occam's Razor therefore suggests a far more plausible explanation than conjouring up a divinity. Unless, of course, you already believe that divinity exists. There is a common theme here, don't you think?


And input from who? That's what we're discussing. Which people did he encounter who would have told him about phenomena that were only realized in the 19th century? The only one I can think of is Gabriel.
A fair point only IF you accept anyone told him about, or that the Qur'an refers to, "phenomena that were only realized in the 19th century". You may have gathered by now I do not.
Reply

Pygoscelis
11-12-2006, 09:48 PM
I can't believe you people are still trying to claim that "waves upon waves" and "layers of darkness" make some precise scientific prediction unknown to the people of the time.

"Layers of Darkness" could simply mean it gets darker the deeper you go (the obvious and litteral view) or maybe it means that evil lurks at the depths and the deeper you go the darker it gets spiritually. It could mean any number of things if you decide to interpret it that way.

My post above about the lamp maybe being a real lamp hidden in the sun that we just haven't discovered yet was only made half in jest.

Given the way you are arguing here I have NO DOUBT that if by some amazing quirk of fate we found a giant lamp inside the sun you'd be claiming to have known it was there all along. Given how magical modern science would appear to the people of Mohammed's time the comparison of wave upon wave being literal and the lamp being literal is not that far apart.

It truly shows Trumble's point that this will not convince anybody who hasn't already decided to be convinced. You are actually convinced by this, which I as a non-believer find very hard to believe.
Reply

Trumble
11-12-2006, 10:09 PM
Originally Posted by Pygoscelis
It truly shows Trumble's point that this will not convince anybody who hasn't already decided to be convinced. You are actually convinced by this, which I as a non-believer find very hard to believe.
I find it very easy to believe our muslim friends believe, if that makes sense.

It just depends on your starting assumptions, specifically whether you believe God exists as muslims percieve Him or not, and whether the Qur'an is His Word or not. If I was a muslim I would believe these 'proofs' in just the same way; from that reference point there is no real choice. Indeed, if I can imagine myself as a Christian or Jew, with the same belief in what is, after all, the same God, I might well find such 'proofs' a very good reason to convert to Islam.

It's not really a case of "deciding to be convinced". If you believe and have faith that option isn't really open.
Reply

Ansar Al-'Adl
11-13-2006, 04:20 AM
Hi Trumble,
Originally Posted by Trumble
Again you choose to completely miss the point, which is how convincing all this might be to an atheist. It is not the alternative interpretation which is 'imaginative', it is yours!
Yet you have continually failed to demonstrate that. You have hopped from one explanation to another, trying to find anything that could explain away the obvious. While I insist on going exactly with what the verse says you keep trying to find other ways to fiddle with the meaning, which is clearly a lost case here since "waves above which are waves, above which are clouds" leaves little to the imagination. You intially supported Pygoscelis's conjecture that it just meant 'a lot of waves' despite the blatant incoherence of such a view in light of the verse's context. So then you drop this point and suggest well maybe the verse doesn't mean to say what it says! In making such a claim you have denied the argument before having entertained it. Allow me to illustrate with an example. If a man living 2000 years ago said that the air we breathe comes out of many trees, that statement contains explicit scientific insight. It is not a fair argument to say, "Well, since the guy was living so long ago he couldn't have known about oxygen and cellular respiration, therefore he didn't mean what he said, therfore we can change his words and say that he really meant to say, 'stuff we consume comes from plants' because we eat a lot of fruits."

Or if the same person said that the moon pulls on the water to generate tides, and you say, "Well by pull he really means poetically that you can see the reflection of the moon dancing on the waves as though it is pulling at them." I'm sure you can probably see many similar examples of such fallacious reasoning.
I have already explained why that is a mute [moot?] point. Do you conceded that the sun is in fact a lamp?
Here's the problem with your analogy - you're trying to dispute over the meaning of one word - 'waves' to mean something other than waves, while your giving me the example of a comparison between the function of the sun and that of a lamp. A more accurate comparison here would be to compare metaphor to metaphor: the sun to the lamp, versus the layers of darkness to the disbeliever.
As a matter of interest did the Arabic of the time have words for both 'wave' and 'current' anyway? If it did have a word for 'current' you have answered your own next question.
Note that when you use the word 'current' you actually intend a specific phenomena which you have clarified later in this post to be a type of tidal flow. Yes, there would be words like the 'sayl' which the Qur'an uses to describe the miraculous flood waters that overwhelmed the people of Saba. It does little for your argument however, since we still stuck with the inescapable conclusion that the Qur'an states that there are ocean waves existing at different altitudes. And their connection to the varying degree of darkness beneath the ocean is also mentioned.
Erm, ever heard of tides?
I have, but you failed to mention that, and as I said in my last post there are a host of distinct ocean phenomena described as currents. But mroe importantly, this actually negates your own argument since substituting such a meaning into the verse renders the passage incoherent along with its metaphor for the disbelievers! The periodic tidal pulls are in no way like layers of darkness one above the other nor can they be described as waves above which are waves above which are clouds. Your attempts are becoming increasingly frantic here.
It is only a Petitio Principii if you assume that the original wording does correlate with science and was intended to correlate with science - which I do not.
Then we should be arguing about whether the original wording does correlate with science or not, not what alternative words we can plug into the verse to change its meaning. So far I have not seen a single argument from you against the correlation between the original wording and science. All your arugments stem on the basis of alternative wordings.
The same is true whether the substitution is made or not... in both cases the non-God explanation will be the least unlikely to our atheist.
Not entirely true. I know many atheists for whom such verses have been a factor in their acknowledgement of the veracity of Islam, in addition to their acceptance of its message. Two ex-atheists on this very forum come to mind - br. _salam_ and br. steve. If one has an open mind they will see that quite clearly there are indeed passages in the Qur'an such as this one that contain an inescapable level of scientific insight which cannot be attributed to a human being living in the desert 1400 years.
The change is indeed due to 'cloudy water'.
But the verse connects it to waves! And it points out the varying degrees of light deeper in the ocean until the point where there is no light and one cannot see their hand in front of their face.
The second part obviously is true, but a snorkel is not required.
Most people would not perform an analysis of the visibility below the surface in the arabian sea without goggles or some eyewear.
You still miss that point as well. However unlikely it may have been it is certainly concievable.
Is that your best response? You can in no way counter my historical arguments on its infinitesimal probability? You take a stand on this issue that you would never take on any other issue in your life.
Simple application of Occam's Razor therefore suggests a far more plausible explanation than conjouring up a divinity.
Actually there is greater parsimony in accepting a divinity when one looks at the big picture because billions of cases like this are transformed from infinitesimal probabilities into plausible scenarios.
A fair point only IF you accept anyone told him about, or that the Qur'an refers to, "phenomena that were only realized in the 19th century". You may have gathered by now I do not.
I have, though I am amazed by the incoherence and deficiencies in your arguments.

Regards
Reply

Trumble
11-13-2006, 05:42 AM
Originally Posted by Ansar Al-'Adl

Yet you have continually failed to demonstrate that.

Let's try again.

"points out the varying degrees of light deeper in the ocean until the point where there is no light and one cannot see their hand in front of their face."
No, it doesn't. All it says is "darknesses, one above another". One of which is clouds, not ocean. There is nothing about graduation of that darkness, simply that clouds, waves and waves are 'darknesses'. As the whole thing is an analogy to the state of mind of an unbeliever, there is nothing suggesting that there is any more than one degree of 'darkness' through which he cannot see even if (and with the analogy, who knows?) there are three seperate 'darknesses' he can't see through - different levels of spiritual attainment or understanding, perhaps? If the use of "darknesses" was intended to suggest different levels of darkness at varying depths, shouldn't the verse have read "darknesses, one below another"? But it doesn't. Increasing darkness with depth is just an assumption, not in the text but on the part of the reader,... one that someone who didn't already know it got darker with depth couldn't make.

Maybe another interpretation will finally show you what I mean.

Or (the unbelievers’ state) is like the darkness in a deep sea. It is covered by waves, above which are waves, above which are clouds. Darknesses, one above another. If a man stretches out his hand, he cannot see it.... (Quran, 24:40)

The first sentence just equates the obviously undesirable state of unbelief to darkness, in this case that of the deep sea. There is no mystery; people at the time and through all of recorded history before and since believed the ocean depths to be places of darkness and mystery, not broad daylight. All you have to do is stand on the deck of a ship, throw in a rock and watch it sink and slowly disappear into, yup, darkness. However, the next part is a miracle! The unbeliever's state of mind is obviously a function of his brain. That state of mind is covered by waves, more waves and clouds. Clearly this refers to the three types or 'layers' of brainwaves, beta, alpha and theta!! How could a man 14 hundred years ago know anything about brainwaves!! This is proof the Qur'an came from God!

I will grant that, while Mohammed may well have met a sailor or fisherman, the chances of him having met a neuro-scientist are indeed 'infinitesimal', so perhaps that equally plausible (yes, it really is) interpretation actually suits your need better?

This, and any other verse used in this context. can be interpreted in any of a dozen ways. At most the reference to two layers of waves is a mildly interesting co-incidence, but that is all... to read any more into it simply isn't justified unless you believe in the divine origin of the Qur'an already. I've made that as clear as I can I think, we'll just have to see how many atheists with a little scientific knowledge this lecture manages to convert. I suspect not many. What you, from your own perspective, see as convincing from outside of that perspective simply is not remotely convincing.


You can in no way counter my historical arguments on its infinitesimal probability?
I already have. Mohammed was a trader, lived in a trading centre, would have met traders (from countries with coastlines) and from what I can see certainly seems to have made journeys to Syria (c. 583). To me that simply blows 'infinitesimal' away, leaving at best 'improbable'. If you insist on 'infinitesimal' when it clearly (to me) was nothing of the sort we will have to agree to differ. There is no sensible way of assessing the actual probability.
Reply

Pygoscelis
11-13-2006, 06:37 AM
Originally Posted by Trumble
If you insist on 'infinitesimal' when it clearly (to me) was nothing of the sort we will have to agree to differ. There is no sensible way of assessing the actual probability.
He says infinitesimal (I have no idea how to spell that word properly), you say unlikely, I say down right bound to happen. The guy lived in one of the major hubs of society in his time. He was BOUND to meet some fishermen.
Reply

Ansar Al-'Adl
11-13-2006, 08:15 PM
Originally Posted by Trumble
Let's try again.
Sure, but let's be consistent...
"points out the varying degrees of light deeper in the ocean until the point where there is no light and one cannot see their hand in front of their face."
No, it doesn't.
Something you should have no problem accepting:
"Layers of darkness, one above the other". I assume that means layers of varying degrees of darkness. Or, it gets darker the deeper you go. Any free-diver could tell you that.
YOUR words, NOT MINE! I specifically used the phrases that you had initially proposed upon first impression of the verse.

If the use of "darknesses" was intended to suggest different levels of darkness at varying depths, shouldn't the verse have read "darknesses, one below another"?
This is a puerile objection. It doesn't matter whether you count up or count down. From the perspective of one at the bottom (i.e. the disbeliever) they are buried under layers of darkness one above the other.

The first sentence just equates the obviously undesirable state of unbelief to darkness, in this case that of the deep sea. There is no mystery; people at the time and through all of recorded history before and since believed the ocean depths to be places of darkness and mystery, not broad daylight. All you have to do is stand on the deck of a ship, throw in a rock and watch it sink and slowly disappear into, yup, darkness.
You ignore the key phrases here. Waves, above which are waves. Layers of darkness, one above the other. I've already pointed out that the darkness is found at a depth of 200 meters. Your examples of snorkeling, throwing rocks etc. are all failing to touch upon what the verse actually talks about. It's not the fact that the ocean is dark. Its the fact that the internal waves at different altitidudes have been described as layers of darkness, which correlates exactly with their refractive nature.
However, the next part is a miracle! The unbeliever's state of mind is obviously a function of his brain. That state of mind is covered by waves, more waves and clouds. Clearly this refers to the three types or 'layers' of brainwaves, beta, alpha and theta!! How could a man 14 hundred years ago know anything about brainwaves!! This is proof the Qur'an came from God!
The difference here is that I'm talking about what the wording of the verse actually says whereas you are extrapolating the verse to draw other comparisons which are not necessitated by the text.
At most the reference to two layers of waves is a mildly interesting co-incidence, but that is all...
A coincidence??? A coincidence with WHAT?? The mention of the layers with waves was just as intentional as its connection with darkness and symbolic representation of the state of the disbelievers.
What you, from your own perspective, see as convincing from outside of that perspective simply is not remotely convincing.
I don't present this verse as some ultimate proof of the Qur'an's truth. My arguments on the validity of Islam almost always examine the Islamic message itself and the developments in the life of the Prophet Muhammad pbuh. However, I have introduced this verse here to counter the notion that all scientific correlations with Qur'anic verses are phony and lacking in objectivity. In my opinion, that may be true for some but clearly not all of them.
I already have. Mohammed was a trader
Actually he was a shepherd. He worked on one merchant journey for Khadija prior to his marriage during a time when his family was financially in need.
lived in a trading centre
Makkah was a religious center more than anything. As a shepherd he spent the vast majority of his time out in open desert contemplating God, and after his marriage he would isolate himself in the cave of Hira.
would have met traders (from countries with coastlines) and from what I can see certainly seems to have made journeys to Syria (c. 583).
ONE journey to Syria prior to his marriage. if you take this line of argument then this would entail that he recalled a specific detail from a casual conversation on oceanic phenomena, some 30 years later in Madinah after his prophethood and having gone through so many tribulations - only for the purpose of mentioning in a short metaphor!

Regards
Reply

lolwatever
11-15-2006, 05:55 AM
^ lol @ bro ansar, nice one mashalah :) .... would hav been useful if ppl learnt arabic before they started goin off making their own interpreations... or atleast study the syntax of what they're trying to accuse as "merely waves crashing on each other"
Reply

lolwatever
11-15-2006, 06:08 AM
Originally Posted by Pygoscelis
I can't believe you people are still trying to claim that "waves upon waves" and "layers of darkness" make some precise scientific prediction unknown to the people of the time.

"Layers of Darkness" could simply mean it gets darker the deeper you go (the obvious and litteral view) or maybe it means that evil lurks at the depths and the deeper you go the darker it gets spiritually. It could mean any number of things if you decide to interpret it that way.

My post above about the lamp maybe being a real lamp hidden in the sun that we just haven't discovered yet was only made half in jest.

Given the way you are arguing here I have NO DOUBT that if by some amazing quirk of fate we found a giant lamp inside the sun you'd be claiming to have known it was there all along. Given how magical modern science would appear to the people of Mohammed's time the comparison of wave upon wave being literal and the lamp being literal is not that far apart.

It truly shows Trumble's point that this will not convince anybody who hasn't already decided to be convinced. You are actually convinced by this, which I as a non-believer find very hard to believe.
Pygo no offense but i think trying to handle these issues is a bit above your level at the moment.... first you need to get your head aroudn the concept of god and what god before trying to explain the quran to us.


I can't believe you people are still trying to claim that "waves upon waves" and "layers of darkness" make some precise scientific prediction unknown to the people of the time.
did you even read ansars posts? and to be quite honest... looks like the only way you'll undersatand is if you take a courase in arabic and then try proving to us that the pharse isn't merely referring to waves thrashign around, the structure of teh sentence clearly is being specific to the idea referred to by ansar.

"Layers of Darkness" could simply mean it gets darker the deeper you go (the obvious and litteral view) or maybe it means that evil lurks at the depths and the deeper you go the darker it gets spiritually. It could mean any number of things if you decide to interpret it that way.
The nature of quran is that its designed for all times and people, a simpleton would understand it in a way that befits his frame of mind but doesnt go against the point of the verse... and a scientist would understand it differently in a way that also doesnt contradict the point of the verse. If you read the verse that follows Allah is definately referring to his power and the greatness of his creation. So its not a pointless piece of imagery.

The quran is designed for people who contemplate and not just read things and think 'oh yeh... could mean anything big deal'.

Given the way you are arguing here I have NO DOUBT that if by some amazing quirk of fate we found a giant lamp inside the sun you'd be claiming to have known it was there all along. Given how magical modern science would appear to the people of Mohammed's time the comparison of wave upon wave being literal and the lamp being literal is not that far apart.
perhaps if you read the entire verse you'd understand they're two very different verses talking about differnt things.. the verse with the lamp is clearly imagery, referring to oil as enlighting even though fire doesnt touch it... and the verse about waves is definately literal becaue its specifically talking about Allah's advanced creation.

It truly shows Trumble's point that this will not convince anybody who hasn't already decided to be convinced. You are actually convinced by this, which I as a non-believer find very hard to believe.
It wont' convince anyone who's got a mind that can't deduce or contemplate... that's for sure. It's so obvious that you're just totally missing the point, stripping phrases out of verses and totally ignoring the context they're mentioned in, not even bothering to read what the verse is on about.
Reply

Hey there! Looks like you're enjoying the discussion, but you're not signed up for an account.

When you create an account, you can participate in the discussions and share your thoughts. You also get notifications, here and via email, whenever new posts are made. And you can like posts and make new friends.
Sign Up

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 34
    Last Post: 05-29-2015, 06:30 PM
  2. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 04-17-2013, 09:41 PM
  3. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-08-2012, 05:14 PM
  4. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-01-2008, 03:36 PM
  5. Replies: 11
    Last Post: 05-05-2006, 03:09 PM

IslamicBoard

Experience a richer experience on our mobile app!