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SCIENCE AND QURAN

More Islamic Pseudo-Science By. TH Huxley 2005/09/26 Maria, is a diehard Muslima. She has known about faithfreedom.org for a long tim e. However, her faith in the absurd has remained unwavered. She is among those i ndividuals who will never see the light and only will wake up from her deep slum ber when she dies to find Muhammad deep in the hell. (Just using Islamic termino logy. Don t be alarmed) Larry, one friend who is set to help Maria and a bunch of other Muslims to wake up from their slumber, regularly emails articles that he copies from this site t o all these Muslim friends. Of course he receives his share of insults, but than ks to his desire to help these Muslims and his thick skin, he just carries on, h oping that haply one of them may come to their senses and see the light. Larry h as also included me in that mailing list. Maria does not just sit there reading what Larry sends her but also responds wit h her "proofs" of the miracles of Islam. A couple of days ago, she sent the most amazing discovery. Here is the text.

Psychological research on word "ALLAH" Vander Hoven, a psychologist from Netherlands, announced his new discovery about the effect of reading the Quran and repeating the word ALLAH both on patients a nd on normal persons. The Dutch professor confirms his discovery with studies an d research applied on many patients over a period of three years. Some of his patients were non-Muslims, others do not speak Arabic and were train ed to pronounce the word "ALLAH" clearly; the result was great, particularly on those who suffer from dejection and tension. Al Watan, a Saudi daily reported that the psychologist was quoted to say that Mu slims who can read Arabic and who read the Quran regularly can protect themselve s from psychological diseases. The psychologist explained how each letter in the word "ALLAH" affects healing o f psychological diseases. He pointed out in his research that pronouncing the fi rst letter in the word "ALLAH" which is the letter (A), released from the respir atory system, controls breathing. He added that pronouncing the velar consonant (L) in the Arabic way, with the tongue touching slightly the upper part of the j aw producing a short pause and then repeating the same pause constantly, relaxes the aspiration. Also, pronouncing the last letter which is the letter (H) makes a contact between the lungs and the heart and in turn this contact controls the heart beat. What is exciting in the study is that this psychologist is a non-Muslim, but int erested in Islamic sciences and searching for the secrets of the Holy Quran. All ah, The Great and Glorious, says,

We will show them Our signs in the universe and in their own selves, until it bec omes manifest to them that this (Quran) is the truth. (Holy Quran 42:53)

This "discovery" is published in more than 800 Islamic sites. Of course if it is published in the reliable Saudi Daily Al Watan, it must be true. Well there is one problem. Here is what our dear friend THHuxley wrote:

Another fake article. But it's the best Muslims can do, I guess. Thoughtful people, when confronted with a bogus story such as this, tend to ask some obvious questions. Like.... 1. Where was this discovery "announced?" There is no mention of a publication, a peer reviewed journal, an academic publi cation... nothing to indicate where someone would go to actually find this "anno uncement." This is (of course) because no such announcement really exists. 2. Where did this "research" take place? There is no mention of a University or similar institution where such research c ould have possibly taken place. The researcher is identified as a Dutch professor hinting that he teaches at a University, but the University is never named. This is (of course) because no such research ever really took place. 3. What do psychological diseases have to do with the contact of heart and lungs?

Nothing at all, actually. The funniest part of this fraudulent little article is the very weird pseudoscience about individual letters and certain PHYSIOLOGICAL (not PSYCHOLOGICAL) effects. Funniest was the claim that pronouncing the letter ( H) makes a contact between the lungs and the heart and in turn this contact cont rols the heart beat. The lungs and the heart are always in contact, even among peop le who are not speaking at all. One would expect a real scientist to actually know the science he is supposedly discussing. The disconnect is (of course) because the writer of this fake articl e is a scientific illiterate. 4. Who is this mysterious Dutch professor? Vander Hoven is not the name of any identifiable person in the Netherlands, let alone a published research psychologist. Now Vanderhoven is a real Dutch LAST name , but there is no one with that name who holds a position in psychology, physiol ogy or science at any Dutch university. If Vanderhoven is this guy s last name, wh y doesn t the article give us his first name as well? This is (of course) because the gination. Dutch professor is a figment of the fabricator s ima

It is a sign of the pathetic status of Islamic science, that even when faking bo gus research reports such as this one, they try to give their report credibility by inventing fake Western scientists as their sources. Anybody who believes this article is true deserves the blighted, benighted circu mstances that they find themselves in.

Sadly, that would include most of the Muslim world.

The Big Bang in the Qur'an Compiled By - OurBangla.com (21:30) YUSUFALI: Do not the Unbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were joined together (as one unit of creation), before we clove them asunder? We made from w ater every living thing. Will they not then believe? PICKTHAL: Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth wer e of one piece, then We parted them, and we made every living thing of water? Wi ll they not then believe? SHAKIR: Do not those who disbelieve see that the heavens and the earth were clos ed up, but We have opened them; and We have made of water everything living, wil l they not then believe? Our idea of the Universe changed dramatically during the 20th century. Scientist such as Harlow Shapley and Henrietta Leavitt added to our understanding but it was Edwin Hubble who discovered that there were other galaxies composed of stars like ours. He measured the distances to these galaxies and discovered that they were moving away from us. In fact, the further way the galaxy the fast it was m oving. He explained these facts by saying that the Universe was expanding If the Universe was expanding then shouldn't there have been a single point of o rigin? It is the current opinion of most scientist that the Universe did origina te out of a single point called a singularity. If that is true, then the Univers e should have been much hotter than it is now. This has been confirmed by the mi crowave back ground radiation. The scientific explanation for these facts is called the Big Bang Theory and it is the dominant theory for the origin of the Universe. But did the Qur'an state this modern theory of the Big Bang 1400 years earlier? Evolution is the modern theory for the origin of life on Earth. It directly foll ows on from the Big Bang and explains how simple organisms in the seas gradually , little by little, became the complex life forms that we see today. The theory was first proposed by Charles Darwin in the 19th century. But did the Qur'an sta te the origin of life before scientist had formulated the theory of Evolution?

From reading the above suras from the Qur'an it would appear that in the deserts of Arabia in the 7th century the Big Bang theory and the origin of life in wate r was given to the prophet of Islam to be later confirmed by the non-believers i n the 19th and 20th centuries. Or does it? If it was true, it would be an extraordinary claim. So, in evaluating it we must analyze it carefully by looking at all the available evidence. Not only do we n eed to look at the Qur'an and modern science but we also need to look at what wa s know by the ancients at the time. First, we will look at the life from water part and then the origin of the Unive rse. Life from Water The belief that life came from water predates Islam. The ancient Greeks believed that life came from water. For example, in Metaphysics, Aristotle records that Thales (62? BCE - 546 BCE) believed 'that it [the nature of things] is water' an d Anaximander (611 BCE - 547 BCE) stated that life came from the sea. One interesting thing with the above passage from the Qur'an is it clear contrad iction to other passages in the Qur'an. For example: (15:28) YUSUFALI: Behold! thy Lord said to the angels: "I am about to create man, from s ounding clay from mud moulded into shape; PICKTHAL: And (remember) when thy Lord said unto the angels: Lo! I am creating a mortal out of potter's clay of black mud altered, SHAKIR: And when your Lord said to the angels: Surely I am going to create a mor tal of the essence of black mud fashioned in shape. (17:61) YUSUFALI: Behold! We said to the angels: "Bow down unto Adam": They bowed down e xcept Iblis: He said, "Shall I bow down to one whom Thou didst create from clay? " PICKTHAL: And when We said unto the angels: Fall down prostrate before Adam and they fell prostrate all save Iblis, he said: Shall I fall prostrate before that which Thou hast created of clay? SHAKIR: And when We said to the angels: Make obeisance to Adam; they made obeisa nce, but Iblis (did it not). He said: Shall I make obeisance to him whom Thou ha st created of dust? YUSUFALI: Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: "I am about to create man from cl ay: PICKTHAL: When thy Lord said unto the angels: Lo! I am about to create a mortal out of mire, SHAKIR: When your Lord said to the angels; Surely I am going to create a mortal from dust: Man made from clay not water? Or is man not a "living thing"?

Origin of the Universe There are a number of different themes in primitive creation mythologies. The id ea that the Heavens and Earth was once a "single block" that was "broken in two" was one of them and was commonly know in the Middle East by the 7th century (in answer to the Qur'an's rhetorical question; yes, the non-believers did know). T he Egyptians, for example, believed that the god of the heavens and the Earth go ddess were once one and that another god "broke" them apart. "According to an Egyptian legend, Geb [the earth god] married his sister Nut, th e sky goddess, without the permission of the powerful Sun god Re. Re was so angr y at Nut and Geb that he forced their father Shu, the god of air, to separate th em. That is why the Earth is divided from the sky." "According to the Sumerians, An was the sky god and symbolized heaven. ... The w ife of An was Ki, the Earth." "... when the heavens had been separated from the earth, when the earth had been delimited from the heavens ..." [Gilgamesh, Enkidu and the nether world] Of cause, being a mono-theistic religion, the Qur'an would not mention the pagan gods and goddess. So, removing those names you are left with the Heavens and th e Earth being one and then separated; as stated in the Qur'an. Most of these "heavens and Earth as one" mythologies involve a cosmic egg of som e sort. The Qur'an does not mention the egg but the imagery is the same, that is , the heavens were broken away from the earth in the same way that a egg is brok en in two. One half forms the heavens above and the second half becomes the eart h below. But then again, was the Heavens and Earth one block? Or were they first separate entities and then came together? (40:11) YUSUFALI: Moreover He comprehended in His design the sky, and it had been (as) s moke: He said to it and to the earth: "Come ye together, willingly or unwillingl y." They said: "We do come (together), in willing obedience." PICKTHAL: Then turned He to the heaven when it was smoke, and said unto it and u nto the earth: Come both of you, willingly or loth. They said: We come, obedient . SHAKIR: Then He directed Himself to the heaven and it is a vapor, so He said to it and to the earth: Come both, willingly or unwillingly. They both said: We com e willingly. Is the Qur'an Correct? In some sense it is unimportant if the Qur'an is the first or if it is unique in presenting its knowledge of creation; it is more important to ask "is it correc t?". As far as the current scientific theory on the evolution of life the Qur'an 's (and that of the ancient Greeks and Sumerians) statement of life coming from water can be considered to be correct, but then the Qur'an contradicts itself in other suras. As for the heaven and earth being one block; no, the Qur'an is cle arly in error. The earth was never part of "one block" as the heavens. The earth is just one planet, orbiting a star in this vast Universe and was formed a very long time after the "heavens". Conclusion

There is nothing special about the Qur'an mentioning that life comes from water or that the heavens and earth were once one block. They are both things that wer e believed before the advent of Islam. In the first case, the Qur'an is correct but in the second its is error.

7 Layers of Heaven Arabic Translation By Ali Sina Dear Ali, Please explain the claim that Muhammad predicted the layers of the atmospher e 1400 years ago when this knowledge was not yet known. Here is the claim: The Layers of the Atmosphere One fact about the universe revealed in the verses of the Qur'an is that the sky is made up of seven layers. "It is He Who created everything on the earth for you and then directed His atte ntion up to heaven and arranged it into seven regular heavens. He has knowledge of all things." (The Qur'an, 2:29) "Then He turned to heaven when it was smoke. In two days He determined them as s even heavens and revealed, in every heaven, its own mandate." (The Qur'an, 41:12) The word "heavens", which appears in many verses in the Qur'an, is used to refer to the sky above the Earth, as well as the entire universe. Given this meaning of the word, it is seen that the Earth's sky, or the atmosphere, is made up of s even layers. The Earth has all the attributes that are needed for life. One of them is the at mosphere, which serves as a shield protecting living things. Today, it is an est ablished fact that the atmosphere is made up of different layers lying on top of one another. Just as it is described in the Qur'an, the atmosphere is made up o f exactly seven layers. This is certainly one of the miracles of the Qur'an. Indeed, today it is known that the world's atmosphere consists of different laye rs that lie on top of each other. Furthermore, it consists, just as is described in the Qur'an, of exactly seven layers. In a scientific source, the subject is described as follows:

14 centuries ago, when the sky was believed to be one unified body, the Qur'an m iraculously stated that it consisted of layers, and what is more, "seven" layers . Modern science, on the other hand, discovered the fact that the atmosphere sur rounding the Earth is made up of "seven" basic layers only very recently.

The above claim was made by Harun Yahya in his site but after I published the f ollowing rebuttal he removed that page from his site. You can still find what he wrote in this Islamic site. The Truth About 7 Layers of Heaven The pre Copernican concept of the universe was geocentric, i.e. they thought tha t the Earth was flat and was located at the center of the universe. They believe d that the Sun and the Moon along with Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Venus and Mercury that made the seven known objects of the heaven were deities. These were the onl y objects people could observe with their naked eyes moving in the sky while the stars appeared to be fix. Pre-Copernican Universe Notion They believed that these planets or gods each had its own sphere. These layers are not the same as the orbits that we know. The planets did not orbit the Sun but they all revolved around the flat Earth in this order: Ancient Egyptians and Greeks both concocted myths about the moon to explain why year length had changed from 360 to 365 days. Speculation about Archan gels quotes the Catholic Encyclopedia as saying 'The name Lucifer originally den otes the planet Venus...' View a Martian Calendar There have been at least six different notions about Saturn thru the ages. Moon Mercury Venus Sun Mars Jupiter Saturn The closest to the Earth was the Moon and the farthest, was the Saturn. Therefo re the concept of the 7 layers of heaven is based on ancient astronomy, where ea ch celestial body occupied a crystal sphere one placed on top of the other like layers of an onion. . Both Judaism and Christianity make reference to these layers of heaven. For exam ple Dante in his Divina Comedia refers to it and Paul the apostle, in 2 Corinthi ans 12:2 says: I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to th e third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know God kn ows. The heaven was the physical world above. The concept of a spiritual heaven is a new concept. In the mind of the ancient man the distinction between physical hea ven (sky) and spiritual heaven was fuzzy. For example cielo in Spanish still means both sky and heaven. Not only the resented the evel of Hell Muhammad and ally: Heaven had seven layers, the Earth also had seven layers and it rep underworld or the Hell. Dante, for example on visiting the lowest l meets two men with their bodies split and he learns that they were Ali. He describes his encounter with these two wretched men graphic

Truly cask, by losing mid-board or cross-piece, is not so split open as one I saw cleft from the chin to where the wind is broken: between his legs were hanging his entrails, his inner parts were visible, and the dismal sack that makes ordur e of what is swallowed. Whilst all on seeing him I fix myself, he looked at me, and with his hands opened his breast, saying, "Now see how I rend myself, see ho w mangled is Mahomet. Ali goeth before me weeping, cleft in the face from chin t o forelock; and all the others whom thou seest here were, when living, sowers of scandal and of schism, and therefore are they so cleft. The number seven was so engrained in the mind of the ancient man that you can fi nd it everywhere. Seven planets or gods had been identified and the phases of the moon changed eve ry seven days. The Bible states that God rested on the seventh day after he comp leted his Creation. And every seventh year was sabbatical and that the seven tim es seventh year ushered in the Jubilee year. The Pagans divided their weeks in seven days each day representing a deity. 1. Saturday which was the first day of the week (as it still is in Islamic co untries) was dedicated to Saturn (Dies Saturni), 2. Sunday to Sun (Dies Solis), 3. Monday to Moon (Dies Lunae), 4. Tuesday to Mars (Dies Martis), 5. Wednesday to Mercury (Dies Mercurii), 6. Thursday to Jupiter (Dies Jovis), and 7. Friday to Venus (Dies Veneris). [1] Out of this order come the familiar seven Archangels which include Michael, Gabr iel, Raphael, Uriel, Raguel, Sariel, and the fallen Lucifer. The pagan concept of the seven layer of Heaven crept into Judaism and the number seven can be found in Judaism more than anywhere else. Why? Because Midrash tea ches, there are seven layers of Heaven, obviously an influence of Paganism in Ju daism. When Adam sinned, the Shechinah departed to the First Heaven. The sin of Kayin fo rced it to the Second Heaven; the Generation of Enosh to the Third; the generati on of the Flood to the Fourth; The generation of the Dispersion to the Fifth; So domites, to the Sixth; Egypt of Avraham's day, to the Seventh ... (Bereishis Rab bah 19:7) [2] According to Judaic scriptures, creation took 7 days; Naaman had to wash 7 times in the Jordan to be cleansed from leprosy; the Israelites had to march around J ericho 7 days and 7 times on the 7th day; they had to set aside one day in 7 for

rest and worship. There was a 7-armed lampstand in the temple, etc. In the last book, Revelation, we find mentioned 7 spirits, 7 lampstands, 7 churches, 7 star s, 7 seals, 7 trumpets, 7 vials, 7 thunders, 7 plagues, 7 mountains and 7 kings. The tribulation period is to be 7 years being the last "week of years" of Danie l's 70 weeks (Dan 9:24 ff).[3] Muhammad did not invent the concept of the seven layers of Heaven. He merely par roted it without understanding the Pagan origin of this idea. He wrote: So He ordained them seven heavens in two periods, and revealed in every heaven it s affair; and We adorned the lower heaven with brilliant stars (Fussilat 41: 12)

This verse has nothing to do with layers of the atmospheres as claimed by the ch arlatan Harun Yahya. It has to do with the geocentric concept of the universe th at was prevalent at the time of Muhammad. Note also that according to Muhammad, stars are lamps that are affixed to the ceiling of the lower layer of the Heaven for adornment purposes. The lower level is the sphere of the Moon. Obviously st ars are not in the same layer where Moon is and neither the Moon nor the stars a re in the lower atmosphere of the Earth.

In fact the concept of the layers of heaven as mentioned in the Quran is so unre lated to the layers of the atmosphere that the Islamic site www.understanding-is lam.com tries to give a completely mystical significance to that verse and claim s that it talks about the "spiritual heavens" which the soul will encounter afte r the death. [4] The reference to the fact that God has created seven heavens has generally been g iven in the Qur an, in reply to the skepticism shown by the disbelievers regarding the possibility of life after death. it refers to the vastness of His creation. It says that God has not just created one sky -- i.e., one universe, but seven such skies -- or seven universes. It seems that the huge universe that we live in, the one whose boundaries are no t yet known to man, is just one of these heavens (universes) there are seven oth ers, of which we -- with all our scientific developments -- do not know anything about. Certain verses of the Qur an clearly indicate that the whole huge mass of space around us is just one of these universes... The Islamic site www.pakistanlink.com quotes Maududi, the renowned Muslim schola r and the interpreter of the Quran who says: It is difficult to explain precisely what is meant by the seven heavens . In all ag es man has tried, with the help of observation and speculation to conceptualize the heavens , i.e. that which lies beyond and above the earth. As we know the conce pts that have thus developed have constantly changed. Hence it would be improper to tie the meaning of these words of the Qur an to any one of these numerous conc epts. What might be broadly inferred from this statement is that either Allah ha s divided the universe beyond earth into seven distinct spheres, or that this ea rth is located in that part of the universe which consists of seven different sp heres." [5] From the Ahadith (especially the Hadith of Mi raj) we learn that the first heaven is the one that is closest to the earth. So the order begins from the earth and the highest heaven is the seventh heaven [6].

As one can see the real scholars of Islam are unable to explain the meaning of t he seven heavens mentioned in the Quran and try to give esoteric significance to it. If we had to believe that the seven heavens is an allusion to the seven lay ers of the atmosphere then we have to assume that stars must be no more than ele ven kilometers above the Earth, because as the verse 41:12 says the lower heaven is adorned with brilliant stars. The Troposphere ends at about eleven kilometer s above the surface of the Earth. Not only Muhammad, like other men of his time, believed that the sky had seven l ayers, he also thought that the Earth was made of seven layers too. Allah is He Who created seven Firmaments and of the earth a similar number 5.12] [Quran 6

In this verse the number of the earths is not in question. It assumes that every one agrees that there are seven earths. The emphasis is on the claim that Allah is the creator of these seven earths. The reason is because just like the seven heavens, the ancient people had agreed that there were also seven layers of eart h. Muhammad was simply stating what seemed to be obvious to the people of his ti me but of course he was dead wrong according to the modern science. What are these seven earths that Muhammad was talking about? If there were seven continents on Earth, the Muslim apologists would not waste time to claim this v erse is a miracle. But we do not have seven continents. Muhammad is talking abou t the seven layers of Earth. He is talking about the same layers that were descr ibed by Dante in his Inferno. Several hadith make this clear. Here is one: Allah's Apostle said, "Whoever usurps the land of somebody unjustly, his neck wi ll be encircled with it down the seven earths (on the Day of Resurrection). " [7 ] Down the seventh earth is allusion to the bottom of the Hell, where Dante found Muhammad and Ali with their bodies torn asunder. It is interesting to note that both Muhammad and Ali raided innocent people killed them or exiled them and usur ped their lands unjustly. Fadak was a beautiful village with many gardens that M uhammad usurped from the Jews of Khaibar after annihilating them and gave it to his daughter Fatima the wife of Ali. I am surprised Dante did not see Fadak arou nd the neck of Muhammad and Ali when he saw them in Hell. Isn't this another pro of that even their description of Hell was wrong? The detailed description of these seven earths is given by Muhammad ibn 'Abd All ah al-Kisa'i: ... There are seven earths. The first is called Ramaka, beneath which is the Bar ren Wind, which can be bridled by no fewer than seventy thousand angels. With th is wind God destroyed the people of Ad. The inhabitants of Ramaka are a nation c alled Muwashshim, upon whom is everlasting torment and divine retribution. The s econd earth is called Khalada, wherein are the implements of torture for the inh abitants of Hell. There dwells a nation called Tamis, whose food is their own fl esh and whose drink is their own blood. The third earth is called Arqa, wherein dwell mulelike eagles with spearlike tails. On each tail are three hundred and s ixty poisonous quills. Were even one quill placed on the face of the earth, the entire universe would pass away. The inhabitants thereof are a nation called Qay s, who eat dirt and drink mothers' milk. The fourth earth is called Haraba, wher ein dwell the snakes of Hell, which are as large as mountains. Each snake has fa ngs like tall palm trees, and if they were to strike the hugest mountain with th eir fangs it would be leveled to the ground. The inhabitants of this earth are a nation called Jilla, and they have no eyes, hands or feet but have wings like b ats and die only of old age. The fifth earth is called Maltham, wherein stones o

f sulphur hang around the necks of infidels. When the fire is kindled the fuel i s placed on their breasts, and the flames leap up onto their faces, as He hath s aid: The fire whose fuel is men and stones (2:24), and Fire shall cover their fa ces (14:50). The inhabitants are a nation called Hajla, who are numerous and who eat each other. The sixth earth is called Sijjin. Here are the registers of the people of Hell, and their works are vile, as He hath said: Verily the register of the actions of the wicked is surely Sijjin (83:7). Herein dwells a nation cal led Qatat, who are shaped like birds and worship God truly. The seventh earth is called Ajiba and is the habitation of Iblis. There dwells a nation called Khasu m, who are BLACK and short, with claws like lions. It is they who will be given dominion over Gog and Magog, who will be destroyed by them [8] It is not hard to see these tales are nonsense. These are fairy tales that even children today would laugh at. As it has been proven time and again, Quran is wrong in almost all its assertion s. One error would have been enough to prove Muhammad was not a messenger of God but a liar. We have shown that there are hundreds of errors in the Quran. Yet M uslims desperately keep looking for miracles to fool themselves and find validatio n for their belief.

1- [To understand why this order was chosen see this link: http://www.12x30.net/ origin.html] 2- http://www.neveh.org/winston/parsha63/nitzvylc.html 3- http://www.answering-islam.org/Nehls/Ask/number19.html 4- http://www.understanding-islam.com/rq/q-014.htm 5 - (Towards Understanding the Qur an, translated by Zafar Ishaq Ansari, vol. 1, p.58 note no. 34.) From the Ahadith (especially the Hadith of Mi raj) http://www.p akistanlink.com/religion/2000/03-31.html 6- Ibid 7- [Bukhari Volume 3, Book 43, Number 63. see also: Volume 3, Book 43, Number 63 3: and Volume 3, Book 43, Number 634:] 8- (Tales of the Prophets-Qisas al-anbiya, trans. Wheeler M. Thackston Jr. [Grea t Books of the Islamic World, Inc., Distributed by Kazi Publications; Chicago, I L 1997], pp. 8-9) taken from: http://answering-islam.org.uk/Quran/Science/seven_ earths.html

Super-Scientific Religious Scriptures! By Avijit Roy Founding Moderator, Mukto-mona [Translated by: Abul Kasem from author's Bangla write up "Bigganmoy Kitaab" ]

[ Listen, O uninformed, a man has the ability to write a book, the book does not have any ability to create a man Nazrul] [1] Part I My response to a very innocuous e-mail impelled me to write this fastidious essa y. Let me first elaborate on this. Just about four years ago, I set on my overse as sojourn from my native Bangladesh to a foreign university. In the beginning, it was really difficult to ignore the immense enthusiasm that I enjoyed browsing free Internet provided by this university. You may literally compare my situati on similar to a frog used to live in a well, suddenly let in a big ocean. This a cademic place was abound with immense free-flow of knowledge. It was in such a p rofound milieu of scholastic freedom that I truly became obsessed with even to the extent of forgetting my food to the cyber world! I skimmed and skimmed in search of knowledge; almost like exploring an ocean. While searching the net in this fashion, I suddenly received an e-mail from Mr. Jamal Hasan; along with it, the address of the website www.bangladesh-web.com/news, an on-line newspaper; News F rom Bangladesh (NFB). At first, I was not that keen on this website being a bit skeptical about the quality. Then, when I really visited the website, I was simp ly amazed and perplexed. After reading a few informative, high-quality articles, I was extremely flabbergasted. That many Bangladeshi Muslims, a rather very con servative society, wrote those high caliber, rational and secular essays was qui te unthinkable to me. Indeed, it was a great surprise to me, to say the least. I still remember very clearly one such essay, entitled, The Qur anic Folklore Who Was Zulkernain? When I read that article, I was simply dumbfounded no exaggeration. Eve n the names of the authors were also pretty odd :Syed Kamran Mirza, Fatemolla no, never did I hear such names in my life, I swear. That was the beginning. Gradually, I came know about Abul Kasem, Aparthib Zaman, Narayan Gupta, Sabbir Ahmed, Dr.Jaffor Ullah, Jahed Ahmed, Dr Ali Sina, Dr Kaus hik Sen, Bishnu Dey, Paramanab, Shabnam Nadiya and many others. Each of them was like a spark of fire. A little later, I set up Mukto-Mona (http://www.mukto-mona. com ), a progressive, secular and humanist Internet forum for the people mainly of Bengali origin. This forum is very much in the know to many overseas Banglade shis familiar with various Internet forums. Mukto-Mona has always put forwarded opinion contrary to the prevalent views an exception, you might say. That is why M ukto-Mona has become famous; expressing the voice of the dissents and the unconv entional--to explain further. In a world replete with religious bigotry and comm unalism, Mukto-Mona stands out as a beacon of a progressive, guiding light, that will enlighten many a soul groping in darkness. I leave the topic of Mukto-Mona for a while; not forgetting that the history of Mukto-Mona is very unique, no doubt. I deliberately brought out the affairs of M ukto-Mona, as I am quite sure that it (Mukto-Mona) is now essentially intertwine d with the theme of this essay.

Let me be back to NFB, once again. I noticed that not all writers of NFB had unc hained the shackles of religion to pen their essays. I do remember a distinguish ed Western educated university professor; always unrelenting in finding science in a specific ancient religious scripture. Now a day, it is a trend that has imm ensely engulfed a good number of educated Bangladeshi Muslims a sort of fashion, w e may say. Their main motivation has sprouted from the shattering works of two Occ idental charlatan scientists--Dr Maurice Bucaille and Dr Keith Moore. They blith ely discovered in Qur an, Big-Bang , expansion of the universe , theory of evolution of uman species , science of atoms and molecules , milky-way, constellation , white dwarf k-holes, embryology , theory of relativity , theory of super string and what not. Now, distinguished professor, mentioned before, imbued with such inspiring discoveri es, was writing endless article in NFB to prove how super scientific the Qur an is! Enough was enough! Finally, I decided to protest against his non-stop ranting. I wrote, why try to find Big-Bang in Qur anic verses, thousands of years old ? There are plenty of books on Astrophysics dealing with Big-Bang . Why not consult those book s instead? 'For example', I explained - 'if we want to learn about the solution of differential equations then we invariably have to refer to books on Mathemati cs'. Can we find the solution of differential equations in the Qur an? I questione d him. After reading my audacious essay, the gentleman exploded like a freshly set bomb. In his next epic sized essay, he spared no pain to exhort the utter short comings of my understanding of science and Islam. How stupid and foolish I was, he had no hesitation in surmising. Citing examples after examples from innumerab le sources, he was hell bent in proving only fact that is, all modern science is a bsolutely indicated in the Qur an. Qur an is definitely a Book of Science , he was very adamant. When his obdurate, obstinate and bigoted approach pushed me to my limit, I was c ompelled to write this essay. My contention was quite simple: if we read careful ly, we surely note that those ancient religious scriptures were composed at a ti me when the humanity had a very limited understanding of scientific knowledge. O ne cannot legitimately expect to find the complex theories of Big-Bang , 'Super Str ing', 'Relativity' etc. in the pages of those dated Holy Books. In reality, the contents of those primitive books reflected the sheer backwardness prevalent in the contemporary society; their thoughts, belief, hopes and despair; nothing mor e than that and nothing less. Let me illustrate with an example: when the holy Q ur an was composed (a better word is compiled, I should emphasize), the eminent sc ientists like Galileo, Bruno, Copernicus, et.al were not even born. How could th e people of that primeval period even think of an earth, revolving around our su n? Nay, they could never comprehend this, as they were familiar only with the su n rising in the east and then setting in the west; the rising of the moon at the onset of night. These are the phenomena they have observed since their birth. G od controls these heavenly objects, they thought. That certain laws of physics g overn the progress of these celestial bodies, they could never comprehend. This is what is accurately reflected in many verses of the Qur an, Hadis, Vedas and the Bible. Consider this verse from Sura Luqman (31:29) from the holy Qur an [15]:

Hast thou not seen how Allah causeth the night to pass into the day and caus eth the day to pass into the night, and hath subdued the sun and the moon (to do their work), each running unto an appointed term; and that Allah is Informed of what ye do?

In this verse Allah clearly says that he is the one who converts the day into ni ght and vice versa; subjected the sun and the moon to follow a fixed orbit. We f ind many similar verses elsewhere in the Qur an as well. Here are a few samples: S

ura Ya-Sin (36:38), Sura Az-Zumar (39:5), Sura Al-Rad (13:2), Sura Al-Anbiya (21 :33), Sura Al-Baqara (2:258), Sura Al-Kahf (18:86), Sura Ta-Ha (20:130), just to name a few. However, even a thorough, painstaking search of the entire Qur an doe s not show a single verse anywhere in it that supports the scientific reality of the rotation of earth. According to Allah, the earth is motionless, completely static. Period. In Sura An-Naml (27:61) it is stated clearly: Is not He (best) Who made the earth a fixed abode, and placed rivers in the folds thereof, and placed firm hills therein, and hath set a barrier between the two seas? Is there any Allah beside Allah? Nay, but most of them know not! In the same vein, Sura Al-Rum (30:25), Sura Fatir (35:41), Sura Luqman (31:10), Sura Al-Baqara (2:22), Sura An-Nahl (16:15) exhorts the Allah s decree that the ea rth is completely immovable. Since the previously mentioned scholar was absolutely certain that the Qur an cont ains all the scientific principles, with due respect, I earnestly requested him to show me a verse, just a single verse in the Qur an that states that the earth m oves round the sun; or that the earth rotates on its own axis, at the least. I sh all accept all your contentions, for sure, if you can show me such a verse , I wro te. The Arabic word for earth is Ard and the Arabic word for rotation is Falak . e show a just a single verse in the Qur an that uses the two words Ard and Falak by side , I insisted. He could not show me a single verse to that effect. Of course, he could never succeed; I knew this from the very beginning. How coul d he succeed when it is totally certain that there is no such verse/s in the Qur a n as I had already elaborated? People of that era did not have the knowledge to calculate the speeds and periods of diurnal and annual rotations of the earth. The transition from the Geo-Centric concept of the earth of Ptolemy to Copernicus lio-Centric universe took a long time to hold. People during Muhammad s time had th e slightest clue as to the mystery where do the sun go at night? They had no idea on sun s movement, to say the least. The sun really proceeds to a far-off place to take rest this was their notion about the setting of the sun. The learned readers will have no trouble in finding this truth out by simply gleaning through the S ura dealing with Zul-Karnain (18:86): Till, when he reached the setting-place of the sun, he found it setting in a muddy spring, and found a people thereabout. We said: O Dhu'l-Qarneyn! Either p unish or show them kindness. How is it possible for Allah to commit such a humongous blunder come to think of i t! Have our learned Islamic scholars, searching endlessly for Big-Bang , Super Strin g , etc. in the Qur an has ever seriously pondered on it? How could Allah think that the sun must have a resting place of its own! How could we accept the Qur an as a Book of Sciene ? Shall we not consider it a book of comic, instead? Many readers may not be aware that the 'Muslim World' considers Muhammad to be t he greatest scientist, thinker and philosopher that Allah ever created. Now, thi nk about the funny answer, this greatest creator of science gave when people quest ioned him: Where does the sun hang about at night? In a conversation with one of his companions (Abu Dhar), Muhammad claimed that the sun prostrates under the thr one of Allah for the entire night and seeks His permission to go to its usual wo rk in the morning! Let us read this hadis [15]: Volume 6, Book 60, Number 326:

Pleas side

He

Narrated Abu Dharr: Once I was with the Prophet in the mosque at the time of sunset. The Prophet sai d, "O Abu Dharr! Do you know where the sun sets?" I replied, "Allah and His Apos tle know best." He said, "It goes and prostrates underneath (Allah's) Throne; an d that is Allah's Statement:-'And the sun runs on its fixed course for a term (decreed). And that is the decr ee of All-Mighty, the All-Knowing....' (36.38)

It will be foolhardy to assume that those erudite scholars making desperate atte mpts to demonstrate science in ancient scriptures are not aware of those laughab le verses. Surely, they are very much aware of them (verses). With full knowledg e, they deliberately confuse the gullible people. This is exactly where I have s evere objection. My response to this Islamic scholar did create some stir among many readers. Many progressive web-sites duly published my essay and even one th rew a challenge to the fundamentalist Mullahs under the heading, Avijit Roy chall enges the fundamentalists. This challenge still stands in the cyber world [2]. So far, no Islamic scholar could refute my assertions by citing the appropriate ve rses from the Qur an. Let me elaborate more on this particular word, Challenge. Many people consider thi s word (Challenge) to be a very crude and impolite. But those who are long-term practitioners of Rationalism and Skepticism know rather well that a challenge co uld really be a lethal weapon. There are many rationalists who have issued earth shattering challenges on many topics. Some of them have challenged the divine and spiritual gurus ; some have challenged the Astrologers about their fortune telling ; some challenged the medical practices of the so- called Faith Healers while ma ny others have challenged the infallibility of Holy Scriptures. I can cite the e xample of challenge by the Amazing Randi, the founding fellow of the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (CSICOP). He had issue d a challenge of one million dollars to the practitioners of supernatural power. Dr Abraham Kovoor, a life-long fighter against superstitions, has also thrown s imilar challenge. Prabir Ghosh, a Bengali Rationalist has issued a challenge of fifty thousand Indian Rupees to the powerful clique of Astrologers. The Banglade shi magician, Jewel Aich has also proclaimed a challenge to prove the existence of the genies (Jinns) and ghosts. Those who consider the Qur an to be the infallib le words of Allah, Dr Ali Sina, a member of Mukto-Mona and the co-founder of Fai th Freedom International, has a challenge for them. The truth is: challenge is a n important phase of movement of rationalism by the freethinkers. Being in tune with Prabir Ghosh [3], I would also like to announce, Those cows who have been el evated to such lofty positions through advertisement and media, let us bring the m down to earth to graze there by issuing challenges to them. A challenge may no t be nice to the vacillators, the opportunists and the envious people, but it (the challenge) does expose the truth. A popular and logical question is: If you are so sure to prove your claims, then why not accept the challenge?" Lest the ures rses you misunderstand me: I must clarify that, just because I cited the Qur an on immovability of the earth, does not at all mean that other religious script are blameless. In actuality, we invariably come across with many similar ve in the Bible and the Vedas too.

Let me illustrate from the Bible the very concept of stationary earth [Bible]: Fear before him, all the earth: the world also shall be stable, that it be n ot moved. (1Chronicles, 16/30) The LORD reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the LORD is clothed with stre

ngth, [wherewith] he hath girded himself: the world also is stablished, that it cannot be moved. (Psalms 93/1) Say among the heathen [that] the LORD reigneth: the world also shall be esta blished that it shall not be moved: he shall judge the people righteously. (Psal ms 96/10) [Who] laid the foundations of the earth, [that] it should not be removed for ever. (Psalms 104/5)

Likewise, we read in the Vedas [15]: From the Rig Vedas (Book10, 173/4): Firm is the sky and firm the earth, and stedfast also are these hills. Stedfast is all this living world, and stedfast is this King of men. In another verse of the Rig Vedas (Book10, 149/1), it is stated: SAVITAR fixed the earth with bands to bind it, and made heaven stedfast wher e no prop supported. Savitar milked, as 'twere a restless courser, air, sea bound fast to what no foot had trodden.

The above verse is especially important for a very specific reason. This verse c learly informs us that, in the Vedic period, the people believed not only in a s tationary earth, but also considered the sky as the roof of the earth! They used to think that the almighty God had suspended this roof above us without any sup port. This was possible, only because God possessed an incredible supreme power. We read an uncannily similar verse in Sura Luqman of the Qur an (31:10):

He hath created the heavens without supports that ye can see, and hath cast into the earth firm hills, so that it quake not with you; and He hath dispersed therein all kinds of beasts. And We send down water from the sky and We cause (p lants) of every goodly kind to grow therein.

Due to advancement in scientific knowledge, we of course, know for certain, that the sky is not the roof of the earth. The truth is: there is absolutely no such object called sky. In reality, the sky is actually our limit of vision. The blue in the sky we see is nothing but scattered blue light only due to the presence of the atmosphere surrounding our planet. Take the example of the sky of the moon; it is absolutely black. Why? Because there is no atmosphere around our moon! Howev er, the trouble is: we do not find any such scientifically correct explanation i n the so-called super scientific' religious books! Sometimes, I wonder how long w ill it take us, the human to be enlightened! When will the common folks reject t he so-called Holy Scriptures and come to comprehend the real meaning of sky?

In this connection, I recall a few very meaningful lines from one of my favorite Bangla poetry Standing Under a Tree of Sunil. Here are those memorable lines [4] :

So many centuries have gone by but men remained an infant They could not fathom out the meaning of the word - 'sky' Which one could see in Chottogram or in Bakura. The word "man" cannot be enveloped by barbed wire. No one named Eshwar (God) a big boss is running the show in this mortal worl d Religions, nothing more than some folklore They won t hear the cry of neighbor s baby smothered with dust They love spewing slogans that lacks harmony A few man who wanted to make us grow old tried so hard We hung their portraits but no one seems to care....

Part II As soon as this essay was published in NFB, a load of criticism was hurled at me . A rather pious lady friend of mine sent an e-mail, writing: It may be true tha t The Qur an does not directly mention about the rotation of the earth; however, b ear in mind that nothing in the Qur an is that straight forward. For example, nowh ere in the Qur an one will find that the earth is round. But this does not necessa rily means that the Qur an talks about a flat earth. In my reply, I mentioned that the Qur an, does, indeed talk of a flat earth. In s upport of my contention I cited the following verses: And the earth have We spread out, and placed therein firm hills, and caused each seemly thing to grow therein (Sura Al-Hijr 15:19) Who hath appointed the earth as a bed and hath threaded roads for you therei n and hath sent down water from the sky and thereby We have brought forth divers kinds of vegetation, (Sura Ta Ha 20:53) Who made the earth a resting-place for you, and placed roads for you therein , that haply ye may find your way; (Sura Az-Zukhruf 43:10) And the earth have We spread out, and have flung firm hills therein, and hav e caused of every lovely kind to grow thereon, (Sura Qaf 50:7) And Allah hath made the earth a wide expanse for you (Sura Nooh 71:19)

It is certainly palpable from those verses that there is no accord between the Q ur anic motionless, flat earth and the modern physicist s concept of a round-shaped earth. Please read the previously mentioned verse 18:86 once again. This verse s tates that a faithful servant of Allah, did actually saw the sun to set on a cer tain muddy place. Verse 18:90 (of the same Sura), even describes a particular pl ace where the sun rises. Naturally, one would not hesitate to ask: why did Allah think that the sun must have a definite abode for its rise and a definite abode for it to set or to take rest? Only one conclusion can be made from such an ide a, and that is; in Allah s sight, the earth is surely a flat surface. We can definitely deduce from the fixed prayer times that the ancient people wer e quite accustomed to the notion of a flat earth. Aroj Ali Matubbar [5], the pea sant-philosopher of Bengal has further elaborated on this idea of flat earth in his book The Quest for Truth Let us take this opportunity to examine his elaborati on.

In Islam, it is compulsory to offer prayers five times a day. Preset times are a ppointed for these prayers. Offering of prayers apart from these set times are f orbidden. For example, a Muslim cannot pray at sunrise, at sunset or at midday. We know from the diurnal rotation of earth that, at any fixed time, the sun is s een at any position on earth and as such, a prayer can be offered at any site on the earth. What does this mean? Consider the following fact. When the sun is ri sing at Barisal (a district in Bangladesh), it has still not risen at Calcutta ( in West Bengal, India). However, in Chittagong (another port city in Bangladeh), the sun is already up. So, when offering prayer at Barisal is haram (forbidden) , it is not haram at Calcutta or at Chittagong. Thus, can we find any justificat ion for imposing a ban on offering of prayers at some other times apart from the set times of prayers? Aroj Ali Matbor, the rationalist, in his book mentioned before has posed a very interesting question: Suppose, a Muslim, after offering the Zuhr prayer at 1:30 PM, leaves for Mecca. Arriving in Mecca, he will be surp rised to note that it is yet not noon there. So, shall he offer another Zuhr pra yer at Mecca too? The answer to this enigma is actually contained in the questio n itself. Aroj Ali, himself has answered this question in a rational way. Accord ing to him, there was a time when the concept of earth as stationary and flat wa s very much in vogue. From this perception, the idea of fixed times for prayers emerged he opines. Nonetheless, this old concept is now dead; instead, the modern science has proved that the earth is round and in motion. That is why complicati ons have arisen while trying to fit the modern day life-style with age-old relig ious doctrines. These complications will definitely keep increasing in future, n o doubt. Here is a very compelling illustration: if an astronaut or an aircraft pilot flies at a speed of 1041.67 miles an hour from the west, he will find the sun to be motionless, still. This means that, for the air-passengers there will be no such time as morning, noon or evening as if the sun is standstill at one pos ition only! What would happen to prayer and fasting come to think of it? If in fut ure, human habitation is established in the North Pole, there will be more probl ems. There is approximately six month of days and six months of nights at this f orlorn place. Will it be possible to strictly follow the rules of fasting as wel l the dictums of five prayers a day between sunrise and sunset there? Please pon der closely on this issue and you will surely discover that the root cause of th is problem is the erroneous idea of a flat and motionless earth. Let us search history. A famous Arabic scientist of the twelfth century did thin k that the earth is not really flat but round. As soon as his idea became known, all his works were declared as blasphemous, his books confiscated and burnt. Ju st a few years ago, the supreme religious authority of Saudi Arabia, Sheikh Abde l Aziz ibn Baaz issued a fatwa (Islamic edict) in this fashion: The earth is indeed flat. Those who do not accept this are atheist they deserve to be punished. In his book The Demon-Haunted World , Karl Sagan has enunciated this fa twa in detail. The Hindu scriptures are also similar. A vivid description has been cited in pag e 169 of Narasingha Mythology. That is why, Jambbudipa, an organisation at Barod a, Gujrat is working relentlessly to prove scientifically the infallibility of Ved ic flat earth belief. In September 15, 1999, Tim Miller, professor and chair of religious studies at K ansas University, claimed that "The Bible says the Earth has four corners," said and added that he believes the Earth is either a square or a tetrahedron, a sol id figure with four triangular faces. It is quite amazing to observe that, based on the erroneous idea, some people, even in this twenty-first century still uph olds that the earth not round-- rather flat. They even have formed societies, na med International Flat Earth Society (http://www.1hup.edu/~dsimanek/fe-scidi.htm ) and The International Square Earth Society (http://pwi.net.com/~rogermw/square_e arth.html). These are all laughable organizations; their main aim is to prove th at the earth is actually flat, no matter what science says!

Thanks to Bucaille and Moor, we repeatedly return to the topic of divine power of the Qura an. Let us face squarely Is the Qur an really celestial, supernatural and a great book of science flawless and spiritual in content? To paraphrase from the B engali singer Suman Chatterjee (who borrowed from Bob Dylan's "Blowin' in the wi nd"), I must write, The questions are easy; the answers, too are known. The answer is that Qur an can never be a miraculous, heavenly book. Just like any other anc ient religious scripture, the Qur an is also littered with downright errors, sheer antiquated beliefs, absolute scientific blunders and numerous ambiguities, to s ay the least. In actuality, there is no Big-Bang , no theory of Relativity, no Blac k Holes, not even the concept of atom-molecule in the entire Qur an. What we find in the name of Big-Bang and Relativity is the cunning and deceptive manner in whic h certain Qur anic verses are interpreted. Here is an example.

Consider the following verse from Sura Al-Ambia (21:30) Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were of o ne piece, then We parted them, and we made every living thing of water? Will the y not then believe? It is quite astonishing that the so-called erudite science experts discover Big-Ban g in this verse! Is there an iota of Big-Bang in this verse? Think carefully with a rational mind. Let us examine up-close this verse and the verses immediately fo llowing this:

21:30 Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth we re of one piece, then We parted them, and we made every living thing of water? W ill they not then believe? 21:31 And We have placed in the earth firm hills lest it quake with them, a nd We have placed therein ravines as roads that haply they may find their way. 21:32 And we have made the sky a roof withheld (from them). Yet they turn a way from its portents. For further clarification let us also quote verse from Sura Al-Rad (13:2) Allah it is Who raised up the heavens without visible supports, then mounted the Throne, and compelled the sun and the moon to be of service, each runneth u nto an appointed term; He ordereth the course; He detaileth the revelations, tha t haply ye may be certain of the meeting with your Lord.

The above verses actually depict a very obscure and ancient idea of the universe . Don t you think that the concept of support-less roof and the placement of mount ains for the earth not to shake is very much akin to the use of a heavy paper-we ight on a piece of paper so that it is not blown away by the wind? And what did Allah do to prevent the sky from falling on heads? Yes, He supported the sky on unse en pillars! How could one pass these as twentieth century science? Still more st range is this part of verse 21:30: the heavens and the earth were of one piece, th en we parted them, .. If these few words are really the proof of Big-Bang , then one may legitimately ask; where is the mention of the huge explosion? The word Big-B ang , itself, is very significant here. Where do we find the sign of that famous Ba

ng?

Furthermore, in Physics, the Big-Bang is related with space-time singularity, not with matter per se. The earth did not even exist when the Big-Bang took place the ea rth having been born billion years after the Big-Bang ! The above verses are clearl y referring to earth and sky being "joined" (which doesn't even have a common se nse or scientific meaning) together and then being split apart (again meaningles s as per science), and that is all. Of course, from scientific point of view thi s is a complete nonsense not to talk of Big-Bang . Therefore, simply using a few jargons and playing with words in the above verse (21:30), in no way expresses scientifically, the Big-Bang incidence. We learn from Quantum Physics that, just after the Great explosion, the four forces of nature, the strong nuclear force, the weak nuclear force, electro-magnetic force and the gravitational force existed as a unified super force. Where in the above verse on e can find this scientific truth? How could one calculate the Hubble Constant fr om the above verse? How can we compute the Doppler effect? There is, of course, no answer on these questions. If there is no answer of those scientific enquiries, how can one make himself co nvince that those verses actually describing big bang, not the partition of an e gg before making an omelet ? On this matter, the readers with an open mind on t he exegesis of the Qur an, may refer to the essay, 10 top-most scientific myths abo ut Qur an' kept in the archives of Mukto-Mona website.

One important issue must be bear in mind: due to my debate with the exegetes of the Qur an one must never assume that the experts of other Holy scriptures are free from blame. In reality, they are all same and akin to the other side of the coin , and that is all. There are a number of Hindu divine philosophers who will insist that the world-vision shown to Arjuna by Lord Krishna as mentioned in the epic, Mahabharata was nothing less than Big-Bang . Mr. Mrinal Dasgupta, a prominent scie ntist of National Indian Academy of Science, insists that the ancient sages alre ady knew about the constant new discoveries of theories of science of today the Ve das are quite clear on this, he is adamant. According to him, even a scientist o f the calibre of Openheimer was so much impressed by the scientific content of t he Geeta that when the intense power of atom dazzled him, he recited the hymns i n Sanskrit from the Geeta [6]: Dibi shurjushohosro vabed jugpoduthiita. Jodi vah shodrishi sa syad vashshosh mohatmano. Many Hindu scientists are quite certain that the discoveries of modern science a re nothing but the repetition of the scientific knowledge scribed in the Hindu s criptures eons ago. The communalistic organization like Ramkrishana Mission is p reaching that the existence of Black Holes is nothing new the Hindus knew about them a long time ago. How? One may ask. Their answer is the famous words uttered by the supreme Lord Brahmma: 'One moment of Brahmma is one thousand years for earth '. Some Hindus will even stretch their believe to bizarre extreme saying that th e mythological war of Kurkshetra was nothing but an Atomic War. One popular Indi an writer, Prasanata Pramanic, in his Bengali book Modern Science in Indian Philo sophy has stretched his imagination even to the extent of Mohenjodaro. In page 6 of his book he wrote, It is most likely that an ally of Durjodhan (a character in Mahabharata) was annihilated in a nuclear holocaust in Mohenjodaro [7]. These Ved a-addicted utopians will, unhesitatingly claim that the modern test tube baby and su rrogate mother , though attributed to modern science is nothing new to Hindu civil ization. They will invariably cite examples of the mythological births of Dhrone

-Dhroni, Kripa-Kripi etc. Even the recently used Scud and Patriot missiles in th e Gulf war are ascribed to the likes of Barun Baan and Agni Baan of Hindu mythology. These scientists will, invariably find similarities between modern science and Hi nduism in practically everything. Such was the case with the eminent Indian maga zine, The Desh: Hrishikesh Sen, the author of the article, Science and God publish ed in the The Desh on April 22, 1995, found the similarity between the modern mo del of the universe and the spider described in the Vedas. Strange comparison, ind eed. Aparthib Zaman, a prominent member of Mukto-Mona severely criticized this futi le attempt to search science in religious scriptures. In an article on this topi c he succinctly wrote: ' I see an attempt here to link planetary nebulae with a religious verse. Th is is a flawed attempt that is often made by apologetics of all religions, some more than others. If one likes to see science in anything they can see it anywhe re. Some Joe may have said "All is relative" before Einstein's theory of relativ ity. By this stretch of imagination that Joe can legitimately claim that he alre ady knew about relativity and claim originality. Any vague phrase, pun, quote et c by humans, scriptures etc can be customized and made to fit any scientific pri nciple which also have been phrased in a very general way for popular consumptio n hiding the underlying precise sense of these principles. Its an insult to scie nce and the scientists whose painstaking research has helped unravel the complex workings of the laws of nature and reality. None of these scientific revelation s were inspired from, dependent on, or utilized any of the religious revelations . If religious revelations could not and did not lead to any of these scientific truths in a stand alone way then by any criterion and logic they cannot be used to corroborate science. There are many unanswered questions in the basic unders tanding of the universe. Why can't the verses of scripture throw any light on th em? For example we don't at this time know for sure if the universe is closed, o pen or flat. No body dares to make a prediction based on any revelation. But if it is ever found out by science I am sure one can dig out some vague words of a verse from some book of some religion and claim to "see" the answer that science has finally managed to find. Its always AFTER the fact that these semblances ar e found. It has never been found BEFORE the scientific discovery. Is that a coin cidence?'

Realizing this sheer nonsensical game of the religionists, Probir Ghosh, in his book, Why I don't believe in God has mentioned a very interesting analogy [8] . Le t us ask a drunken person about the model of this universe. At first, the drunka rd may simply look at the questioner with baffling eyes; pick up the bottle from the street and drink more. Then he will throw the empty bottle in the street an d start walking. If we wished, we could easily liken the whole episode to the af fairs of the universe. We may compare the full bottle as the expanding universe, the drinking and emptying the bottle means the drunkard was saying that at a ce rtain time this expansion (of the universe) will come to a stop and then contrac tion will ensue. Then, when the drunkard cast away the empty bottle he wanted to imply that before the contraction of the universe starts, all creations will be annihilated, leading to the point of singularity. Shall we accept this explanat ion as plausible? Of course, the above explanation is absolutely nonsense, to say the least. For t he last few years, we see with dismay, this game of sheer stupidity is being pla yed in Bangladesh. This is exactly similar to the futile attempt of elucidation of the universe through the drunkard s behavior cited above. Books, such as, 'Gyan er kotha' (Of knowledge), 'Lojja' (Shame) are readily banned on the lame excuse of hurting the religious sensitivity of the public. Even a freedom fighter like M r Wahab is shamed by parading around his village with shoe necklace around his sho

ulder [11] for the simple crime of reading books such as The Quest for Truth by Aro j Ali Matbor and 'Je golper shesh Nei' (The never-ending Story) by Devi Prasad C hatterjee; Taslima Nasrin [12] is exiled from her motherland [13]; Ahmed Sharif [14], Ali Asghar, Kabir Chowdhury are declared as Murtads (apostates) for exerci sing their right of free-speech. On the other hand, with the generous patronage from the Government, the Islamic Foundation publishes the pseudo-science book, l ike Scientific Identification in Holy Qur an . With the blessing of the blind faithfu ls and the fatalist believers, the likes of Bucaille and Moore have a great feas t with the huge circulation of their great scientific books. The entire Bangladesh is now flooded with books such as Al-Qur an the greatest Bangla book of science, Sp ace and the challenge of the Qu ran , Qur an or Science , Science and Al-Qur an , just to a few. Last year, while celebrating the first anniversary of the founding of Mu kto-Mona, Dr Ajoy Roy, a Professor of Dhaka University wrote in his essay, Scient ific Mind and Building of a Society Based on Science Oriented Thought [9]: If the holy books are the only source of knowledge, then stagnation will result in the society, the society would turn into a static state in its conscience and thinking, creativity would be replaced by superstition, unproductiveness, narro w-looking attitude, illiteracy and foolishness. That type of society would be re trogressive and backward looking. What we see in our society? Superstition and f ruits of technology mutually co-exist. We don't want the reason of science; we w ant only its fruits in our material life; side by side we will nourish blind fai th and submission to fate. We decorate our drawing with a colored TV and watch s atellite program, send our hysterical daughter to the abode of a peer (religious guru) instead of taking to medical center.- this kind of contradiction is possi ble only in our society. In this society it is possible for a microbiologist to carry on higher research biochemistry , at the same time kissing the feet of a f amous peer. It is in our society possible for a learned political scientist to a research monograph on secular political system at the same time to rush to a ha lf educated spiritual peer for begging his blessings to have a lucrative coveted post of administration. This is the typical panoramic view of our society we ar e used to see.

Indeed, today, this is the reality of our society a society that is on a journey r iding a strange camel to fit with religion! In this age of supreme advancement o f science, when the chain of religion is gradually being loosened elsewhere, whe n the humanity has every doubt and skepticism about religion, a relentless effor t is mounted to perpetuate the religion-based sheer exploitation of the gullible devotees by brainwashing them. It is a very clever strategy, no doubt repackaging religion in modern science. It is a kind of drug and many people are hooked on it. Under the morbid influence of such a powerful narcotic, people have really s tarted to believe that the 1400 years old scripture do augment the theory of Big-B ang or the concept of time dilation is really contained in some verses of those an cient scriptures. What a pity! What a catastrophe! Who will free this nation obs essed with religion? As I was pondering deeply with this sorry affairs of my native land, an answer c ame to my mind. It was Omar Khayyam [10] who wrote these few lines:

" If Madrasahs of those drunks Became the educational institutes Of teaching philosophy of Epicures, Plato and Aristotle; If Abode and Mazars of Peer and Drabesh Is turned into research institutes, If men instead of following blind faith of religion Should have cultivated e thics,

If the abode of worships were turned into Centers of learning of all academi c activities, If instead of studying religion, men Would have devoted to develop mathemati cs - algebra, If logic of science would have occupied the place of Sufism, faith and super stition, Religion that divides human beings Would have replaced by humanism, .... Then world would have turned into haven, The world on other side then would have extinguished, The world would then become full of Love-affection-freedom-jo y, And there is no doubt about it."

How astonishingly the state of affairs in Bangladesh matches with the sayings of this famous bard, come to think of it! In unison with the voice of Dr Ajoy Roy, we also wish to say, Dear Omar, please hasten to see us witness how deeply immerse d we are in superstition, ignorance we need you very very desperately in this land of fatwabaj (religious diction)'. 27/03/2007 . [1] Kazi Nazrul Islam (1899-1976), A famous poet of Bengal; popularly known as rebel poet (Biidrohi Kabi). [2] http://www.humanists.net; http://rationalthinking.humanists.net/; http://w ww.faithfreedom.org; [3] Prabir Ghosh, General secretary, Science and Rationalist Association of Indi a. http://www.humanists.net/avijit/prabir [4] Sunil Ganguli, one of the most contemporary prominent literary figures in In dia. His famous poem "Standing under a tree" (ekta gaachtoly daariye) has been t ranslated by Dr. A.H. Jaffor Ullah: http://humanists.net/avijit/kobita/standing _beneath_a_shady_tree.htm [5] "MohaGuru" Aroj Ali Matubbar - a truly homegrown philosopher of Bangladesh: http://mohaguru.humanists.net [6] Prabir Ghosh, "Why I don't believe in God" (Aami keno Iswarey Bishwash kori na) Calcutta: Dej Publishing, 1996, p. 132. [7] Mohenjodaro was a city of the valley of Indus. This was one of the earliest known civilization in India. [8] Prabir Ghosh, "Why I don't believe in God" (Aami keno Iswarey Bishwash kori na) Calcutta: Dej Publishing, 1996, p. 136. [9] Professor Ajoy K. Roy, "Scientific Mind and Building of a Society based on S cience oriented thought", http://www.mukto-mona.com/rationalism/index.htm [10] Omar Khayyam (1048 -1131), one of the greatest mathematicians, astronomer s, and poets of Iran whose Ruba iyat (quatrains) are translated into most of the l anguages of the world.

[11] The Victim of 'Fatwa' is now a Man; http://www.humanists.net/avijit/articl e/news/wahab_1.htm [12] Taslima Nasrin - Author, poet, physician, refugee under fatwa. http://www.m ukto-mona.com/human_rights/taslima/index.htm [13] One Brave Woman vs. Religious Fundamentalism, Free Inquiry magazine, Volume 19, Number 1. http://www.secularhumanism.org/library/fi/nasrin_19_1.html [14] Dr. Ahmed Sharif (1921 -1999)- A consummate rational humanist, prominent fr eethinker and an outspoken scholar, renowned researcher of Bengali literature. http://www.mukto-mona.com/personalities/ahmed_sharif.htm [15] Please note: * All Qur an translation is by Marmaduke Pickthal and are cited from the websi te: http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/quran/ * Sahi Bukhari translation is by Dr Muhammad Muhsin Khan and are cited from the website: http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/hadithsunnah/bukhari/ * All Vedas translation is by Ralph T.H. Griffith and are cited from the web site: http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/index.htm * All quotes from the Bible are extracted from the website: http://www.bluel etterbible.org/ '

Is Islam Scientific? By Shafiya April 2002

We have all been listening slogans as to how Islam is a very scientific religion and anxious Islamists are eager to prove that many modern day scientific discov eries were actually predicted in the Quran. My article exposes this fallacy that

Islam (for that matter any revealed religion) is scientific.

My argument as to why Islam is not scientific is that it never allows doubt. Dou bt is one of the worst possible sins in Islam. But science is built on the found ations of doubt. A scientist is never a believer, for to believe in any thing me ans to accept facts without verification. A scientist is always a skeptic, alway s a doubter. Does this apply to Islam? NO, a big NO! Islam demands 100% faith wi th no room for any doubt. Islam demands that we accept what the koran says, what the hadiths say, 100%. There is no question for any doubt. No debate. No questi oning accepted of the basic beliefs. Any one daring to do so is promptly silence d.

A true scientist does not follow this approach. For example if a scientific theo ry is propounded, it is rigorously scrutinized, experiments done, observations m ade and if all the results correspond to the theory, it is accepted, till it is denied by later observations and experiments.

Nothing is rigid! Nothing is fixed! Things are always in a state of flux in the world of science.

For example Newton s theories were accepted by the scientific Fraternity for 300 y ears for they tallied with their experiments. Newton s theories also tallied with the then observation of the planets. But science never demanded rigid belief in Newton s theories. (People not believing in his Theories were not called unbelieve rs and persecuted.)

Along came the discovery of the atom and greater observation of the universe by more powerful telescopes. Newton s theories didn't work well with the latest exper iments, Until Einstein and Plank proposed the Quantum theory. Nowadays the quant um theory is the accepted theory in science, till newer observations turn up. No w Einstein is not called an apostate for questioning Newton, nor will the future scientists be if they challenge the quantum theory.

This is what we call the scientific approach...never believing in any thing 100% . This is science, and not believing in anything 100% and twisting facts and obs ervations to correlate with some koranic verses. A religion that coerces blind b elief in `revelations can never claim to be scientific, for the basis of science is doubt.

May be religions like Buddhism, Jainism, Confucianism, Taoism and Hinduism, whic h allow and even encourage dissent & free thought can claim to be scientific but certainly not Islam, Christianity or Judaism which depend on revelations and bl ind belief, and especially Islam which stifles intellectual enquiry at the pain of death & punishment, is never scientific and can never claim to be one.

Westerners Find $cience in the Quran! This article was published in The News From Bangladesh April 18, 2001 The tales of Bucaille and Moor, two occidental charlatans By Abul Kasem The new Mullahs and other Islamists feel very happy whenever they find occidenta l (western white person) talks in favor of their faith (Islam). This is especia lly true when these western people try to associate Qur an and Hadith with anythin g resembling an inkling of scientific truth. For the last 25 years or so, the I slamists have found an infidel supporter (pseudo) of their faith. He is none ot her than Dr. Maurice Bucaille who was in France in 1920. At one time, he was th e chief of the surgical clinic of the University of Paris. In 1976, he publishe d a book entitled "The Bible, The Qur an and science. Ever since its publication, the Islamists have found a great sanctuary in this book whenever the question of science and Qur an is raised. Bucaille s writings have become not only a source of inspiration for them, but it also has become their principal source to confront the secularists who point out the various ambiguities, inconstancies and the un scientific nature that one could find scattered all over Qur an. In his book, Dr. Bucaille discusses the following main topics as revealed in the Qur an The Creation of the heavens and the Earth Astronomy and the Qur an The Earth Human Reproduction If one reads Dr. Bucaille's discourse on these topics, it does not take much int elligence to note the twisted logic and his clever selection of only those verse s that serve his purposes. There is not enough space in this short essay to dea l with each and every aspect of Dr. Bucaille's topics. One striking point howev er is that he only elucidates a natural phenomenon as described in the Qur an and interprets that natural phenomenon as the scientific explanation in the Qur an. (F or details to a rebuttal to Dr. Maurice Bucaille please visit www.freespeech.org /rationalthinking or refer to "The Qur an and the Bible in the Light of History & Science" by Dr. William Campbell, publisher Middle East Resources 1992). This is absolutely unacceptable to anyone who has the slightest idea what scientific kn

owledge is all about. Take for example the case of "water cycle. Dr. Bucaille tries to depict that the Qur an had the advance knowledge of this natural phenomenon before anyone could d iscover it. This is totally untrue. Water cycle is really an observable natura l fact that is understood even by an illiterate and uneducated (in modern scienc e) person. This water cycle consists of the following phases. (1) Water evapora tes from the land, lakes, rivers; seas etc. (2) Water is transformed in to cloud . (3) Cloud gives rain. (4) The rain replenishes the water in land. (5) Water ru ns to the rivers, lakes and then to the sea. The cycle then repeats. There is no doubt that this phenomenon was clearly understood even by the pre-historic pe ople that enabled them to invent the system of agriculture, which is largely dep endent on this cycle. Today, even the primary school children are aware of this cycle of nature. To say that the "water cycle" is something that is discovered by the Qur an is simply laughable and reveals nothing but the real motive as to w hy Dr. Bucaille is so inclined in pleasing the Islamists. Let us look for some clues to this matter. Dr. Bucaille was appointed the family physician of the late King Faisal of Saudi Arabia. King Faisal introduced him to the Islamic religion and its source, tha t is, the Qur an and Hadith. At that time, Dr. Bucaille was a stereotyped western er who had prejudicial ideas about Islam and the Qur an. He was acutely aware of the perceived de-humanized face of Islam outside the Islamic world. This charla tan found a great opportunity to make good money out of this situation. He thou ght that if only he could please the Islamists by writing a few good things abou t Islam he can have a good share of the petro-dollar that was pouring in Saudi A rabia. This will be better than remaining as a lowly physician to the king. So he learned the Arabic language and started to study the Qur an and wrote the book , "The Bible, The Qur an and Science". Money he did make and plenty of it. This is due to the fact that almost all the Islamic countries have translated his book in their languages and it is a must read book for the new Mullahs. Also, consid er how much blessings he had received from all the oil rich Seikh doms. For all of these, he is deeply grateful to his paymaster, the Arabs. In fact, in the le ngthy introduction part of his book he writes "The debt of gratitude I owe to th e late King Faisal, whose memory I salute with deepest respect, is indeed very g reat: the fact that I was given signal honour of hearing him speak on Islam and was able to raise with him certain problems concerning the interpretation of the Qur an in relation to science is very cherished memory. It was an extremely great privilege for me to have gathered so much precious information from him persona lly and those around him". Dr. Bucaille's book leaves one with the impression that he (Dr. Bucaille) is con vinced that Islam is the truest religion of all on earth and the Qur an is indeed the words of Allah. Now when a person is so much convinced in a faith we natura lly expect him to be a Muslim, isn't it? But Dr. Bucaille is not so stupid to f ollow this path. Having digested the Qur an and the Hadith thoroughly he knew wha t fate awaits him (and his family) if ever he changes his mind on Islam (death f or apostasy in Islam). He also realized that he could make more money if he doe s not convert to Islam. Therefore, until today, he is a Catholic. What bugs hi m to become a Muslim and follow the Qur an, which he claims to be so divine and sc ientific? Being a man of science why does not he lend his ultimate allegiance t o the scientific Qur an? What answer the Islamists have for this enigma of Dr. Bu caille? Qur an has 114 Suras and thousands of verses. Why Dr. Bucaille deliberately choose s those verses that deal with a handful of natural phenomena? He very cleverly chooses to quote the following benign verses "There is no compulsion in religion" (2:256)

"(God) has not laid upon you in religion any hardship" (22:78) This is deliberately done by him to give an impression that Islam is very mercif ul and tolerant religion. This is aimed at people who have very little knowledge about the real Islam (especially the western people). Does not this tactic soun d like the tactics used by our new Mullahs? Dr. Bucaille cleverly avoids the po litical, social and the violent parts of the Qur an. Are not political and social matters scientific too? After all, there are such subjects as political scienc e, social science, etc. Dr. Bucaille writes that he could not find any verse in Qur an that is against science. If we have to believe this blatant lie emanating from his pen, then Hilla marriage must be scientific. Mut a marriage must be scientific. Hijab must be scientific. Having four wives at any time and plenty of concubines (possessions of the right hand) must be scientific. Cacophony of azan (loud prayer call, a chief source of noise pollution in Islami c world) must be scientific Tayammum (ablution with dirt and stones) must be scientific Slavery must be scientific Death for apostasy must be scientific. Islamic genocide (like Bangladesh) must be scientific. Cutting off hands and feet for petty theft must be scientific. Using stones to relieve oneself must be scientific. Drinking the Camel s urine must be scientific. Beating the wives to make them obedient must be scientific Killing infidels must be scientific. All the actions of the Talibans must be scientific. And so on. If the Qur an is scientific then why not Kama Sutra (Sanskrit treatise to love mak ing) scientific too? Why not the Bhagabat Geeta, Monu s Sanghita, the Vedas and t he Mahabharata scientific? If the Hindus could generate billions of petro-dolla r they can surely employ many western professors to do just that. When I was in high school, I had a devout Hindu teacher. He always used to say that Hinduism is the basis of all science. How? He used to give examples of the mention of Vi mana (air craft), Garuda (probably flying saucer or space ship), Trishul Chakra (probably rotary space station), Agni Baan (ballistic missiles), etc., to prove that the Hindus knew how to make those things, which are very common in to-days world. 'Do not these examples prove that Hinduism is more scientific than any o ther religion?' he used to say. We just used to nod our head in agreement. Tha t was just to please him and to ensure a good mark in his subject. Dr. Bucille is there to please the Arabs, the Islamists and to make money; tons of it. He a lso employs another tactic. He declares that his own faith (Catholic Christianit

y) is not as scientific as Islam is. What a great news for our new Mullahs! Th ere can be no news sweeter than this, no news happier than this, no news more pl easant than this. Nonetheless, he actually fools the Islamists by throwing dust in their eyes. Never does he covert to Islam. But Mullahs are too docile and c retinous not to see his stratagem. How sad!

Dr. Keith Moore Another great sanctuary for the Islamists and the new Mullahs is the embryologis t Dr. Keith Moore. He was the former President of the Canadian Association of A natomists and professor Emeritus, Department of anatomy and cell biology, Univer sity of Toronto. When he was offered a faculty position in King Abdul Aziz Univ ersity, right away he smelled the sweet scent of petro-dollars and plenty of it in Saudi Arabia. He worked with the embryology committee of the King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah. His job was to interpret the many statements in the Qur an a nd Sunnah referring to the human reproduction and prenatal development. One wond ers why the Saudi Government has to employ an infidel to interpret the Qur an when there are no shortages of Islamic scholars for this job. Why did not the Saudis have qualified people from the 'Islamic brother' countries? How come the Saudi s cannot trust the interpretation of the Qur an from their 'brothers'? The answer lies in the fact that the Arabs practice overt and covert form of racism (call it Islamic racism if you would like). Any dark skinned people who have worked i n the Arab countries will attest to this fact. There are separate pay structure s and perks for the whites and the dark skinned people in most Arab countries. A statement from a dark skinned people no matter how much education and knowledg e he or she does have is not acceptable to the Arabs. Whereas, a sworn statemen t by a western white skinned person with a very little expertise is totally acce ptable to them. As you know, bulks of American Muslims are blacks. However, th e Arabs will seldom employ a black American to do the job of Dr. Keith Moore eve n though the Black American may be as competitive as a white American. The whit e population knows this craving by the Arabs for white recognition. And they ta ke full advantage of this weakness of the Arabs to make more money out of them. Any way, let us hear what Dr. Keith Moore had to say to please his paymaster. At a conference in Cairo, he presented a research paper and stated: "It has been a great pleasure for me to help clarify statements in the Qur an abou t human development. It is clear to me that these statements must have come to M uhammad from God, or Allah, because most of this knowledge was not discovered un til many centuries later. This proves to me that Muhammad must have been a mess enger of God or Allah". Bravo! What could be a better statement than this from an infidel to please the Islamists! Notice that he never mentioned whether the statements in the Qur an ar e scientific or not. He simply stated what the Islamists wanted to hear, took hi s money and went home. He never converted to Islam. He just fooled the ever-gu llible Islamists and the new Mullahs and laughed all his way to the bank. In the West, they say that a sucker is born every minute. I have to say that as long as Islamists are there they will produce gullible folks ad infinitum and in turn these new simpletons would be taken for a ride by the clever ones such as Mauri ce Bucille and Keith Moore. (For a full rebuttal of Dr. Keith Moore's findings visit www.freespeech.org/rationalthinking/) Readers, have you ever noticed that most of the white skinned westerners that wr ote anything good about Islam have either been on the enormous pay roll of the A rabs (petro-dollar) or were engaged by them (the Arabs) to do research work on I slam (in the infidels land) with a fat budget. This type of research works on I slam is very seldom properly supervised or checked by an independent third party . The only thing that matters is the white skin of the researchers. There are pl

enty of talented researchers in many Islamic countries. But the petro-dollar doe s not reach them. Why? This is because the researchers are mostly non-whites e ven though they (these researchers) are good Muslims and are dedicated to their work. Many a time I have received unsolicited research findings on Islamic matt ers from some obscure Universities in countries like US, Canada, U.K. The resea rcher's name involved is always the name of an Anglo-Saxon or similar race. At one time, I received a research finding that was designed to prove that the Isla mic halal method of animal slaughter is better than the western style of slaught er (that is, halal meat is more scientific than non-halal meat). They used EEG machine to measure the pain threshold and pain duration of the animals when slau ghtered in the halal way and compared that with the haram (forbidden) way of ani mal slaughter. Now, it does not take a genius to guess what was the conclusion o f this research. If a genuine researcher reads these research reports, he will s imply dump that in the dustbin. Because the report breaks all the rules in desig ning, conducting and presenting research findings. These research reports are ai med at the gullible new Mullahs who feel great in the scientific authenticity of their belief. The western researchers are very clever. They do the science a priori. They know what the Islamists want. So they do the research backward; th at is, they draw the conclusion first (according to what the Islamists want) and then they conduct the research experiments in such a way that the conclusion is confirmed. This route of a priory research makes Islamists happy. The research ers are happy and money pours in to the starved faculty of the obscure Universit (win, win, win sit y in the West. This is what I call is a Triple Win situations uation). Just imagine how much money the Islmists will throw if ever the resear ch findings go against what the Islamists want to hear! When will the new Mullahs learn the lesson that these infidel western white rese archers on Islam have only the dollar sign in their mind and that they just want to fool the Islamists and make more and more money out of them? Islamists view s are delusional. All these testimonials from some charlatan occidentals are no t going to change the gross inanity and incongruities in Islamic holy book Qur an. The Arabs do not realize it that within the next century all that black gold b uried beneath their soil would be exhausted. When that happens (believe me, tha t would happened one of these days), how would they finance another Maurice Buca ille or Keith Moore? There is still enough time to give up on this shoddy pract ice of hiring testimonial givers from the West. Qur an, which was compiled more t han 1400 years ago, should stand on its two feet. The book may have served its purpose to Arab society then. But like any other book, its time has expired. A ll the testimonials from Nobel Laureates will not be able to bring back its orig inal lustre, which may have dazzled the eyes of Seventh century s Arab Bedouins. The sooner the modern-day Islamists realize it, the better it is for prejudicial Islamic world; because, they have a lot to catch up. ------------------Abul Kasem pens his essay from Sydney, Australia where he teaches civil engineer ing. His e-mail address - abul88@hotmail.com

For a response to the ridiculous claim that Quran is scientific please see the f ollowing website. http://answering-islam.org/Responses/It-is-truth/

To read more about Dr. Bucaille and whether he became a Muslim please check this site. http://www.answering-islam.org.uk/Campbell/bucaille.html

Genesis According to Muhammad Quran and Hadith contain references to creation of the world and the physical re alities that are nothing short of scientific heresies. Despite the effort of som e Muslim apologists to reinterpret them and find some esoteric meaning hidden wi thin these absurd talks, their obvious contrast with science and logic is enough to realize that Islam was not inspired by God. The following is one of them. Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 54, Number 414 " He (Muhammad) said, "First of all, there was nothing but Allah, and (then H e created His Throne). His throne was over the water, and He wrote everything in the Book (in the Heaven) and created the Heavens and the Earth " Does this story make any sense? Notice that the contents of the parenthesis are from the translator. If there was nothing how Allah could have put His Throne over the water? Where was Allah sitting prior to that? From the above hadith one per ceives that the water was there before the creation of the heaven and the earth. There is no mention that God created water! What was holding that water? Don t yo u have to have a space first to put the Earth in it? And don t you need to have an Earth to contain the water? It appears as if there is an error in the order of creation. According to Muhammad the Earth was flat and there are several verses as well as hadithes that confirm this belief. Q: 18: 86 Until, when he reached the setting of the sun, he found it set in a spring o f murky water: Near it he found a People: We said: "O Zul-qarnain! (thou hast au thority,) either to punish them, or to treat them with kindness." 89 Then followed he (another) way, 90 Until, when he came to the rising of the sun, he found it rising on a people for whom We had provided no covering protection against the sun. Some scholars believe that Zul-qaranain is Alexander the Great who, accordin g to the old folks had conquered from one end of the world to the other. What is important here, is that the sun rises and sets in ALL places. One does not have

to go another way to the other end of the world to find it rising. This gives an idea that Muhammad, just like the people of his time believed that the Earth is flat and the sun moves in the sky rising from one place and setting in another. There is also a hadith that supports this idea. Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 54, Number 421 Narrated Abu Dhar: The Prophet asked me at sunset, "Do you know where the sun goes (at the time of sunset)?" I replied, "Allah and His Apostle know better." He said, "It goes (i.e. travels) till it prostrates Itself underneath the Throne and takes the per mission to rise again, and it is permitted and then (a time will come when) it w ill be about to prostrate itself but its prostration will not be accepted, and i t will ask permission to go on its course but it will not be permitted, but it w ill be ordered to return whence it has come and so it will rise in the west. And that is the interpretation of the Statement of Allah: "And the sun Runs its fix ed course for a term (decreed). That is The Decree of (Allah) The Exalted in Mig ht, The All-Knowing." Q. 6: 38 See how this Hadith is confirmed in the Quran? So there is no doubt about it . It is sahih. But does it make sense? Do you get the picture? Now compliment the whole thing with these verses. Q. 78: 6 Have We not made the earth as a wide expanse, 7 And the mountains as pegs? The word expanse gives an idea of something flat. The Arabic word used in Quran is "mehad", (bed). Beds are flat. I don t want to dwell on the obvious. Dose the whole story make sense? Doesn t this Hadith and the one above it, backed by these verses from Quran, clearly describe a flat Earth, where the sun rises from one side of it and sets in the murky wat ers on the opposite side? Is there a Throne somewhere that the sun goes under it and gets permission? What Throne is he talking about? Is it the same Throne of God that is placed over the waters? When and how the sun prostrates itself? The Earth is spherical; can anybody look out and see any Throne anywhere? Has anybod y noticed where in the sky the sun stops to ask permission? The absurdity of the se tales is self-explanatory yet a Muslim would not pause for a moment to questi on their validity. If it is in the Quran, it must be true even if it is blatantl y absurd. For the origin of these stories one has to look into the tales of the people bef ore Islam. In 1952 Theodor H. Gaster compiled a book called The Oldest Stories i n the Word. It is a collection of the lore of the Babylonian, Hittite and Canaan ite people of 3500 years ago; stories that were lost and then unearthed in the 2 0th century. One is astounded to find the similarities of those old stories and the stories in Quran and the Bible including the above Hadith, which proves that Quran is not a divine book but a collection of the, old tales that was part of the folklore of the people to whom Muhammad was talking. In another Hadith Muhammad compares the rise and the set of the sun to a bow. Th is is of course how the movement of the sun appears from the Earth. To the primi tive people it appeared that the sun rises from the East and sets in the West ma king a bow in the sky. Therefore the comparison. Volume 4, Book 52, Number 51:

Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, "A place in Paradise as small as a bow is better than all that on which the sun rises and sets (i.e. all the world)." He also said, "A sin gle endeavor in Allah's Cause in the afternoon or in the forenoon is better than all that on which the sun rises and sets."

Ali Sina

Embryology and Quran

I've read more than one article about the way Quran described the development of the embryo and the Muslims claim that it resembles the modern discoveries in a way that make it impossible for any body else but god to be its author. Unfortunately I don't think those articles were strong enough in revealing the t ruth probably because at least one of their writers doesn't speak Arabic so, des pite that I don't think I read enough about the subject but I still think that I can make a positive contribution. The Quran says in Arabic 23-13 and 14 "Thom khalaqna alnotfat alaqa, fakhalaqna alalaqat modegha, khalaqna almodghat azama, fakasawna alesazm lahma, thom anshan ah khalqan akhr" The way we could put it in English is "Hence we (god), created the sperm into (o r made it turn into) clot (or whatever it is) then created from it a lump then w e created out of it bones (plural) then we covered the bones with flesh" Now, in addition to the fact that many thinkers for 1000's of years had theories and also some experience on the stages of embryo development, the above mention ed description is not more than what ordinary person could imagine, ...building the structure first then hang the other parts on it or cover it with them...just like erecting a tent. Now the clear fact that comes in many documents, out of which I could put my han ds only on one of them is that, that is not the truth. The truth as in the following document (MS Encarta 1998) The implanted embryo consists of a hollow sphere, the blastocyst, containing a m

ass of cells, called the embryonic mass, attached by a stalk to one side of the encircling membrane. In a blastocyst less than two weeks old and measuring 1 mm (0.04 in) in diameter, the microscope reveals the amnion (a sac surrounding the embryo), chorion (a membrane that develops around the amnion and lines the uteri ne wall), yolk sac, and distinct germ layers. In the third week a closed tube appears in which the brain and spinal cord are t o develop. Another tube, folding on itself, is developing into the heart, and at about this stage a portion of the minute yolk sac is enclosed in the body of th e embryo to form a part of the embryonic alimentary canal. At the beginning of i ts fourth week the embryo, now about 4 to 5 mm (about 0.16 to 0.2 in) long, has the rudiments of eyes and ears, and each side of the neck shows four gill clefts . A tail is also present. Early in the second month the buds of the arms and legs appear. The major intern al organs begin to take shape, and in about the sixth week bones and muscles beg in to form. By the third month the embryo is recognizable as that of a primate, and is now called a fetus. It has a definite face, with the mouth and nostrils d istinct, and the external ears are forming. By the end of the eighth week the ta il has usually been incorporated in the body, and in the 11th or 12th week the e xternal genitals become evident. The human embryo is especially vulnerable to th e damaging effects of X rays, of disease viruses such as measles, and of certain drugs during the fourth to the eighth week of gestation. These agents can resul t in the death of the embryo or in the birth of a child with deformed limbs or o ther abnormalities. By the fourth month an embryo is clearly recognizable as a h uman being. The creation of the brain and the spine happens in parallel, (I think that the b rain is neither flesh nor bones) and then long after the "BONES" of the arms sta rts developing which contradict the Quranic verses that tells us that all the bo nes are made first then it gets covered by flesh (only flesh as if we don't have members in our bodies!!!). I think that the issue could be studied in more details but just wanted to clari fy my view

Note: Read about A. E. disappointment with and departure from Islam in Testimoni als.

Shooting Stars Used as Missiles to Hit the Jinn Muhammad just as his Bedouin contemporaries had a strange belief in shadowy bein

gs and ghosts that he called Jinn. These Jinns were made of fire and would stand on top of each other s shoulders all the way to heaven to eavesdrop to what was being discussed. But the most amusin g part is that the prophet believed that the shooting stars and the meteors are the missiles thrown at the eavesdropping Jinns. Q. 72: 8 And (the Jinn who had listened to the Qur'an said): We had sought the heaven but had found it filled with strong warders and meteors. 9. And we used to sit on places (high) therein to listen. But he who listeneth now findeth a flame in wait for him;" He repeated the same absurd idea again. Q. 37: 6/10 We have indeed decked the lower heaven with beauty (in) the stars, (For beauty) and for guard against all obstinate rebellious evil spirits, (So) they should not strain their ears in the direction of the Exalted Asse mbly but be cast away from every side, Repulsed, for they are under a perpetual penalty, Except such as snatch away something by stealth, and they are pursued by a f laming fire, of piercing brightness. And Q. 67: 5 And we have, (from of old), adorned the lowest heaven with Lamps, and We have made such (Lamps) (as) missiles to drive away the Evil Ones, and have prepared for them the Penalty of the Blazing Fire. The universe as was envisioned by Muhammad, obviously belongs to the realm of fa iry tales. The Earth for him was flat were the sun rises from one end and sets i n the muddy waters on the other. In Arabic the word sama stands for both heaven an d sky. And for Muhammad, just like his primitive contemporaries there was no dis tinction between the two. He described the heaven (sky) made of seven layers and placed the stars in the lowest layer, lower than the Moon. Then he envisioned t he mythical Jinns as if they were real beings, standing on each other s shoulders all the way to heaven to eavesdrop to the discussion of the Exalted Assembly . He a ssumed that the stars are just lamps to adorn the lower heaven that are also use d as missiles to shoot the intruding Jinns. Can any reasonable person today acce pt these fables of those primitive people as true? The shooting stars, despite their names are not stars but meteorites that glow w hen enter the atmosphere of the Earth. But Muhammad, could not see the differenc e; to him the shooting stars were stars. As absurd as it may be, today s Muslims still believe in the Jinns. It is written in Quran and for them the Quran is the word of Allah. How can it be wrong? There is also a Hadith that confirms the above story. Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 54, Number 432 Narrated 'Aisha: I heard Allah's Apostle saying, "The angels descend, the clouds and mention this or that matter decreed in the Heaven. The devils listen stealthily to such a ma tter, come down to inspire the soothsayers with it, and the latter would add to it one-hundred lies of their own."

A similar hadith is reported in Sahih Bukhari Volume 9, Book 93, Number 650 Ali Sina

Scientific Errors of the Qur an We will start by pointing out the Qur an s scientific, historical, and grammatical e rrors, namely those which deviate from the well-known rules of Arabic grammar. M uslims believe that the inimitability of the Qur an is found in the eloquence and excellence of the Arabic language in which it is written; thus, it is impossible for them to imagine that the language of the Qur an is full of errors. First, how ever, we will be content to allude to three scientific errors pertaining to the sun, earth and the two phenomenon of thunder and lighting.

The Sun In plain words, the Qur an says that one of the righteous men of God s servants saw the sun set in a certain place of the earth in particular a well full of water and mud. There, this man found some people. Let us read what is recorded in the Qur a n (chapter "the Cave", verse 86), "When he reached the setting place of the sun, he found it setting in a mudd y spring and found a people thereabout. We said: O Dhul-Qarneyn! Either punish or show them kindness" (Surah 18:86). Lest I failed to understand what the Qur an meant by these strange words, I referr ed to the famous students of the Qur an as well as to the ancient scholars. I disc overed that all of them concurred with this rendering and said that Muhammad s fri ends inquired about the sunset and that he gave them that answer. All the schola rs such as the Baydawi, Jalalan, and Zamakhshari confirm it. The Zamakhshari rem arks in his book, "the Kash-shaf", "Abu Dharr (one of Muhammad s close companions) was with Muhammad during the s unset. Muhammad asked him: Do you know, O Abu Dharr where this sets? He answered: G od and His apostle know better. Muhammad said: It sets in a spring of slimy water" (3rd Edition, Volume 2 p. 743,1987). In his book, "The Lights of Revelation" (p. 399), the Baydawi indicates, "The sun sets in a slimy spring; that is, a well which contains mud. Some of the readers of the Qur an read it, ...a hot spring , thus the spring combines the tw

o descriptions. It was said that Ibn Abbas found Mu awiya reading it (as) hot. He t old him, It is muddy. Mu awiya sent to Ka b al-Ahbar and asked him, Where does the sun set? He said in water and mud and there were some people. So he agreed with the s tatement of ibn al- Abbas. And there was a man who composed a few verses of poetry about the setting of the sun in the slimy spring." The Jalalan (p. 251) says that the setting of the sun is in a well which contain s a murky mud. We found the same interpretation and text in the Tabari s commentar ies (p. 339) as well as in "Concise Interpretation of the Tabari" (p. 19 of part 2) in which he remarks that the well in which the sun sets "contains lime and m urky mud". These are the comments of the pillars of Islam and the intimate companions of Mu hammad such as ibn Abbas and Aba Dharr. Also it is obvious from the Qur an (chapte r 36:38) that the sun ran then settled down. The verse says: "And the sun runs on into a resting place." On page 585, the Baydawi says, "The sun runs in its course to a certain extent then it stops. It is similar to the passenger s repose after he completes his journey" (refer also the book of al-Itqan by the Suyuti, p. 242). This is the story of the setting of the sun in the well and its course as a pass enger!

The Phenomena of Thunder and Lightning It is common knowledge, as scientists teach, that thunder is a sound caused by t he impact between electrical charges found in the clouds. Yet Muhammad, the prop het of Muslims, has a different opinion in this matter. He claims that the thund er and the lightning are two of God s angels exactly like Gabriel! In the Qur an there is a chapter under the title of "Thunder" in which it is recor ded that the thunder praises God. We might think that it does not mean that lite rally because thunder is not a living being although, spiritually speaking, all of nature glorifies God. The expounders of the Qur an and its chief scholars, howeve r, insist that Muhammad said that the thunder is an angel exactly like the angel Gabriel. In his commentary (p. 329), the Baydawi comments on verse 13 of chapte r of the Thunder, "Ibn Abbas asked the apostle of God about the thunder. He told him, It is an a ngel who is in charge of the cloud, who (carries) with him swindles of fire by w hich he drives the clouds." In the commentary of the Jalalan (p. 206), we read about this verse: "The thunder is an angel in charge of the clouds to drive them." Not only ibn Abbas asked Muhammad about the essence of the thunder, but the Jews did too. In the book, "al-Itqan" by Suyuti (part 4, p. 230), we read the followi ng dialogue: "On the authority of Ibn Abbas, he said the Jews came to the prophet (peace b e upon him) and said, Tell us about the thunder. What is it? He told them: It is one of God s angels in charge of the clouds. He carries in his hand a swindle

of fire by which he pricks the clouds to drive them to where God has ordered th em. They said to him, What is this sound that we hear? He said: (It is) his voice (T he angel s voice)." The same incident the question of the Jews and Muhammad s answer are mentioned by mo st scholars. Refer, for instance, to al-Sahih al-Musnad Min Asbab Nuzul al-Ayat (stories related to the verses of Qur an, p. 11) and al-Kash-shaf by the Imam al-K amakhshari (part 2, pp. 518, 519). He reiterates the same story and the same wor ds of Muhammad. Thus, the incident is in vogue among all Muslim scholars, and th e story and the dialogue between Muhammad and the Jews is well-known. We have mentioned what the Baydawi, Jalalan, Zamakhshari, Suyuti, and ibn Abbas h ave said. We do not know (among the ancient scholars) any who are more famous th an these. Concerning lighting, Muhammad affirms that it is an angel like the thu nder and like Gabriel and Michael. On page 230 of the above references, Suyuti a lludes to it. Also on page 68 of part 4 of the "Itqan", the Suyuti records for u s the names of the angels, which are: "Gabriel, Michael, Harut, Marut, the Thund er and the Lightning (He said) that the lightning has four faces." The Suyuti listed all these under the sub-title, "The names of God s Angels". He a lso indicated that Muhammad said that the lightning is the tail end of an angel whose name is Rafael (refer to part 4, p. 230 of the Itqan).

The Earth Several thousand years ago, the Holy Bible clearly recorded that the earth is ro und and that it is hung on nothing. "It is He who sits above the circle of the earth" (Isa. 40:22). "He stretches out the north over empty space; He hangs the earth on nothing" (Jo b 26:7). Yet, the Qur an challenges these established scientific facts. In many places, it alludes to the fact that the earth is flat and its mountains are like poles whic h create a balance so that the Earth does not tilt. Let us consider what the Qur a n says about the Earth: In chapter 88:17,20, it is recorded, "Will they not regard the camels how they are created...and the Earth how it is spread?" In page 509, the Jalalan says, "In his phrase, how it is spread , he denotes that the earth is flat. All the s cholars of Islamic law agree upon this. It is not round as the physicists claim. " The Qur anic teaching is obvious from the comment of Jalalan that "the earth is fl at and not round as the scientists claim". What made Jalal al-Din say so is that the Qur an hints in many chapters that the earth is flat(refer to 19:6, 79:30, 18 :7, and 21:30). Also the Qur an indicates that: "We have placed in the earth firm hills lest it quake so as not to sway and hurt people" (21:31). Scholars who agree upon the meaning of this verse believe as the Jalalan states

(pp. 270-271), "God has founded firm mountains on earth lest it shake people." On page 429, al-Baydawi says, "God has made firm mountains on earth lest it sway people and quake. He also made heaven as a ceiling and kept it from falling down!" The Zamakhshari agrees with the above authors and reiterates the same words (ref er to Zamakhshari part 3, p. 114). In the Qur an (chapter 50:7), we find another verse which carries the same meaning , "And the earth have we spread out, and have flung firm hills therein" (Surah Qaf: 7). This is accompanied by the same comment by the above Muslim scholars (refer to J alalan, p. 437; Baydawi, p. 686, Tabari, p. 589, and Zamakhshari, part 4, p. 381 ). All of them assure us that "if it were not for these unshakable mountains, th e earth would slip away." Zamakhshari, the Baydawi and the Jalalan say: "God has built heaven without pill ars but He placed unshakable mountains on Earth lest it tilts with people." Conc erning chapter 50:7, the Suyuti says that scholars indicate that "Qaf is a mount ain which encompasses the entire earth" (refer to Itqan, part 3, p. 29). Qaf is an Arabic L like K. These are the comments of the ancient Muslim scholars word for word. Even some S audi scholars wrote a book a few years ago to disprove the spherical aspect of t he earth and they claimed that it is a myth, agreed with the above mentioned sch olars, and said we must believe the Qur an and reject the spherical aspect of the earth. It is also well-known that the Qur an proclaims that there are seven earths not just one (refer to the commentary of the Jalalan, p. 476, al-Baydawi, p. 745 as they interpret chapter 61:12, Surah Divorce: 1 2). It is very clear that the sun does not traverse the heaven and set down in a mur ky, muddy well, or slimy water, or a place which contains both of them as the Ba ydawi, Zamakhshari, and the Qur an remark. Nor is the earth flat and the mountains the pillars and the towerings which prev ent the earth from moving as the Qur an and the scholars said. Nor is there a moun tain which encompasses the whole earth nor are there seven earths. Neither is the lightning an angel whose name is Rafael, nor is the thunder an an gel. It never happened that the angel Gabriel inspired Muhammad to write a compl ete chapter about his friend the angel thunder! The thunder and lightning are na tural phenomena and not God s angels like Michael and Gabriel as the prophet of Is lam claims.