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RedGuard
12-23-2013, 12:04 AM
I wanted to post it in another thread but it was closed so I must create another one. I am especially concerned about two claims Muslims often make. First - that the Quran says mountains prevent earthquakes and that the earth is like an egg.

1. Earth shaped like an earth. I don't know why Muslims so often state this, as I failed to find any reference to egg or oval shape of Earth in the most popular Quran translations. The notion of egg shaped egg comes from a minor (mis)translation of the Quran by Rashad Khalifa who declared himself a new messenger of God. It is interesting that Muslims have no problem rejecting him as a false prophet who mistranslated the Quran to fit his own agenda, yet when his translation agrees with modern science, then it "miraculously" becomes the only correct one. So far the only translations that agree with him are some recent "reformist", "progressive" translations.

let's compare 79:30:
Rashad Khalifa: "He made the earth egg-shaped."
Edip-Layth: "The land after that, He made it like an egg."
Shabbir Ahmed: "And after that He made the earth shoot out from the Cosmic Nebula and spread it out oval (flattened at its poles)."

The Monotheist Group: " And the land after that He spread out."
Muhammad Asad: "And after that, the earth: wide has He spread its expanse"
Sahih International: "And after that He spread the earth."
Pickthall: "And after that He spread the earth"
Yusuf Ali: "And the earth, moreover, hath He extended (to a wide expanse)"
Shakir: "And the earth, He expanded it after that."
Muhammad Sarwar: "After this, He spread out the earth"
Mohsin Khan: "And after that He spread the earth"
Arberry: "and the earth-after that He spread it out"
Ahmed Ali: "And afterwards spread out the earth."
Ahmed Raza Khan: Mohammed Aqib Qadri: "And after it spread out the earth."
J.M. Rodwell: "And afterwards stretched forth the earth"
Aisha Bewly and Abdal Haq: "After that He smoothed out the earth"
Maududi: "After that He spread out the earth"
Sher Ali: "And the earth, along with it, He spread forth."
Daryabadi: "And the earth!- thereafter He stretched it out."
Abdul Mannan Omer: "And along with it He hurled the earth away (from a bigger mass) and spread it forth."
Tatal Itani: "And the earth after that He spread."

The vast majority of Quran translation - including the most respected ones - do not contain any notion of egg-shaped earth. It would be naive to think that so many great scholars of Islam made such a grave mistake.

2. Mountains that prevent earthquakes. I have came across a number of Muslims claiming that the Quran contains a scientific miracle. However, after doing some research I found it to not be true:

The verse we're talking about is the verse 16:15. here is it in original Arabic:
"wa-alqā fī l-arḍi rawāsiya an tamīda bikum..."

First - the verse contains the word "alqā" which is a verb form IV meaning "to cast", "to throw". No mountain was thrown on the earth from above. There are three main ways by which mountains are formed - either by plate tectonics, erosion or buildup of magma from volcanoes. None of them has anything to do with throwing anything.

The second part of the verse says that mountains prevent Earth from shaking. Now this may eman two different things:

- preventing earthquakes
- preventing the earth from swinging under the weight of people

Mountains do not prevent earthquakes. Mountains are FORMED by the same mechanism that causes earthquakes. Just compare a map of seismic activity with a world relief map (I can't post images) almost all earthquakes occur in mountainous areas. So what the quran says simply does not make sense.
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RedGuard
12-23-2013, 12:17 AM
I can't edit my posts.

"Tamida bikum" means "to shake with you". it's unlikely that the verse is talking about earthquakes.
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greenhill
12-25-2013, 12:00 PM
Originally Posted by RedGuard
I have came across a number of Muslims claiming that the Quran contains a scientific miracle. However, after doing some research I found it to not be true:
One ought to remember that the Qur'an was sent well over a thousand years before human beings academically categorised subjects as we find today. Terms and definitions have taken their own course and meanings.

Maybe scientific miracles won't 'accurately' describe the findings, but it does state certain matters which was unknown by and large back then.

These are statements made in the Qur'an for our own reflection if we want to see it once the 'mystery' of the verse is discovered. Imagine those people who pondered on the verses back when it was not known what was actually meant by it.

I think earthquakes occur where there is a fault-line, not necessarily mountainous area. Haven't heard much about earth quakes around the mountainous areas like the Himalayas or the Alps or the Andes.

Peace :shade:
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sister herb
12-25-2013, 12:41 PM
I have came across a number of Muslims claiming that the Quran contains a scientific miracle. However, after doing some research I found it to not be true.

By RedGuard
This might means also that you are not enough clever to find them, not that they donĀ“t exist in the Quran. I have found many and I am not Einstain- style genius.

Read more, study more, think more. ;D
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Good brother
12-25-2013, 10:59 PM
A Brief Illustrated Guide To Understanding Islam, Muslims, and the Quran
Dr. Zaghloul El-Naggar
The Geological Concept of Mountains in the Quran

Article explaining how research confirms the function of mountains as insulators for earthquakes:

Related to Effects of Large-Scale Surface Topography on Ground Motions, as Demonstrated by a Study of the San Gabriel Mountains, Los Angeles, California



comparison of earthquake waves without topography and with mountainous topography

wol error 1 - Click this bar to view the full image.
Trueperson22 2506491 -
Snapshots of the absolute amplitude of three components of particle ground velocity at time t " 30 sec without topography and
with topography resulting from rupture propagation on the SAF in a homogeneous half-space. The color scale is saturated in this figure and in
all subsequent map-view figures to better highlight features. The red star denotes the epicenter. The contour lines in this figure and subsequent
figures show the topography. The amplitudes of the Rayleigh waves are decreased due to scattering by topography. The scattered
wavefronts can be seen in the right panels.
The effect of the mountains reduces the peak amplitude of ground velocity for some regions in the basin by as much as 50% in the frequency band up to 0.5 Hz.
These results suggest that, depending on the relative location of faulting and the nearby large-scale topography, the topography can shield some areas from ground shaking.
Effects of Large-Scale Surface Topography on Ground Motions,
as Demonstrated by a Study of the San Gabriel Mountains,
Los Angeles, California
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Muhammad
12-28-2013, 03:04 PM
Greetings,

When it comes to the miracles of the Qur'an, know that the scientific miracles are only one aspect, and that greater aspects of its miraculous nature exist and deserve more attention, such as the language and style of the Qur'an. It is true that some people have read in scientific facts that do not exist - often those who have knowledge of science but are not very familiar with the interpretation of the Qur'an. As Muslims, we believe that the scientific aspect of the Qur'an is one of the aspects of its miraculous nature, but without resorting to an erroneous methodology of understanding the Qur'an.

It is also worth noting that the Qur'an is from God and the laws that govern creation are also from God, so there can be no real contradiction between the two.

Originally Posted by RedGuard
The notion of egg shaped egg comes from a minor (mis)translation of the Quran by Rashad Khalifa who declared himself a new messenger of God. It is interesting that Muslims have no problem rejecting him as a false prophet who mistranslated the Quran to fit his own agenda, yet when his translation agrees with modern science, then it "miraculously" becomes the only correct one.
This is not true. I am not aware of such a translation being 'the only correct one'. The following websites mention that the verse in question is not discussing the shape of the earth at all, but rather its spreading:
http://en.islamtoday.net/node/667
http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/in...twaId&Id=92448

The first link gives more details on where the association with eggs comes from.

First - the verse contains the word "alqā" which is a verb form IV meaning "to cast", "to throw". No mountain was thrown on the earth from above. There are three main ways by which mountains are formed - either by plate tectonics, erosion or buildup of magma from volcanoes. None of them has anything to do with throwing anything.
This approach illustrates a very common problem - that many people who seek to criticise the Qur'an do not even possess a minimal knowledge of Arabic. The word (alqā) appears in other verses too:

Indeed in that is a reminder for whoever has a heart or who listens while he is present [in mind]. [50:37]

Rather, man, against himself, will be a witness, Even if he presents his excuses.[75:14-15]

We do not find the words 'to cast, to throw' in either of these translations. Clearly, words can have more than one meaning, depending on their context. This is why a solid understanding of the Arabic language is a vital pre-requisite for interpretation of the Qur'an.
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