Written by Abdul Fatir
Dr. Zakir Naik :
CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE: ‘THE BIG BANG’
The creation of the universe is explained by astrophysicists in a widely accepted phenomenon, popularly known as the ‘Big Bang’. It is supported by observational and experimental data gathered by astronomers and astrophysicists for decades. According to the ‘Big Bang’, the whole universe was initially one big mass (Primary Nebula). Then there was a ‘Big Bang’ (Secondary Separation) which resulted in the formation of Galaxies. These then divided to form stars, planets, the sun, the moon, etc. The origin of the universe was unique and the probability of it occurring by ‘chance’ is zero. The Qur’aan contains the following verse, regarding the origin of the universe: “Do not the Unbelievers see That the heavens and the earth Were joined together (as one Unit of Creation), before We clove them asunder?” [Al-Qur’aan 21:30]
Very poor evidence indeed! And that too factually incorrect!
Dr. Naik has let his imagination loose in correlating big bang with this verse (21:30) of the Quran. Let’s analyze this verse closely.
- It starts with “do not the unbelievers SEE” – This can mean two things- a) that the phenomenon being talked about can be actually seen AND/OR b) that the phenomenon being talked about here is already KNOWN to the people who it is being addressed to (unbelievers in this case). Look at it any which way, it only proves that the phenomenon was already known (and possibly verifiable) to the addressees in advance. So there’s no new knowledge that is being revealed here. I don’t know why Dr. Naik chose such a self-defeating verse in the first place.
My Response :
The first thing is that the Noble Qur’an is a revelation to the whole of humanity till the day of resurrection. The Noble Qur’an says :
It (Qur’an) is but a reminder to the worlds.
This means that it is not must to interpret such verses in Qur’an according to the ignorant arabs 1400 years ago. This verse is actually addressed to the scientific people who now know about The Creation of Universe and still call it a ‘chance’ and reject the belief in Allah.
The verse does not mean to actually see but it means to know about The Big Bang. The verse is actually asking a question to today’s atheists :
Then will they not believe?
by presenting such scientific info 1400 years ago. So, Mr. Agniveer’s understanding lacks here.
Then the verse says “that the heavens and earth were joined together, before We clove them asunder?” – This rustic imagination has nothing to do with the big bang. The earth was formed billions of years after the big bang!! And most importantly, earth was not parted from the universe, it is, was and will remain a part of the Universe!
My Response :
The phrase Samawa’ti wal-ard meaning Heaven(s) and Earth refers to the universe in totality.
The Big Bang model states that all matter was initally condensed to a point of Infinite Density and Zero Volume (Nothingness) and everything separated to form galaxies , stars , planets and other objects of space.
Noble Qur’an in the above verse says that the heavens ( Arabic : Sama : Meaning : Space excluding Earth ) and the earth ( Arabic : Ard ) were a joint entity ( Arabic : ratq : Meaning : blended , stitched , joint etc. ) and God separated them ( Arabic : fataqa : Meaning : that something comes about by tearing apart or destroying the structure of ratq ).
The Qur’an clearly states more than 1400 years ago exactly what has been proved less than 50 years ago that all universe ( Heavens and Earth ) was blended ( ratq ) into a single piece of Infinite Density and Allah separated it (fataqa ) which led to the formation of all celestial bodies.
does not say that the earth was formed as it is in present state at the same time (Big Bang) it says that the Heavens and Earth (Universe in totality , all celestial matter) was initially in a point (ratq) and then it separated and the matter that separated (later formed the Earth and other celestial objects). All the heavenly bodies (earth,stars,planets etc.) were formed from the same mass that expanded. (This is what is meant by heavens and earth joint together) as Shabbir Ahmad explains in his translation of the Noble Verse :
Are not the disbelievers willing to consider that the heavens and the earth used to be one solid mass that We exploded into parting (79:30) and We made out of water every living thing? (24:45). Will they not then (some day) believe? (Numerous celestial bodies came into being and started swimming along in their orbits (21:33), (36:40)).
-Surah Anbiya (21:30)
Notice the importance of the word blend/stitch (ratq) here which refers to a point of enormous density.
The Qur’an refers to the gaseous celestial matter before the creation of heavenly bodies perfectly as dukhan.
-Surah Fussilat (41:11)
Nowhere does the Noble Qur’an say that the earth was thrown out of the universe.
EXPANSION OF THE UNIVERSE
It has been proved now by celestial observations that the galaxies are drifting away and the universe in expanding.
Stephen Hawking says :
The expansion of the universe was one of the most important intellectual discoveries of the 20th century, or of any century.
Allah says in The Glorious Qur’an :
And the heaven We constructed with strength, and indeed, We are [its] expander.
-Surah Dhariyat (51:47)
The above verse clearly states that the Universe is being expanded by Allah.
Another important thing to note is how conveniently (read unscientifically) Dr. Naik assumes the word ‘heaven’ in the verse to mean ‘universe’. Unfortunately, despite this innovation, the verse turned out to be a scientific disaster and a non-revelation.
My Response :
The Arabic word used in the verse is Sama which means heaven(s), sky, firmament etc. and Where did Dr. Zakir say that here only the word Heaven means Universe ?. Heaven(s) refers to all the celestial objects except earth and the phrase Heavens and Earth when it occurs in The Noble Qur’an refers to the universe in totality.
A word can have a number of meaning in a language and disagreeing with it shows the ignorance of Agniveer.
By the way, the Quranic heaven is a 7 storied building/canopy over the earth. Interestingly, not only the Quranic heaven but the Quranic earth has seven layers too (Quran 65:12 [Yusuf Ali] “Allah is He Who created seven Firmaments and of the earth a similar number.”
(We would not be surprised if Dr. Naik comes up with some multiverse argument to explain the 7 universes, but what will he do about the 7 earths therein?)
My Response :
The Noble Qur’an states :
And We made the sky a protected ceiling, but they, from its signs, are turning away. –Surah Anbiya (21:32)
The important thing is the word protected in the above verse and by protection it means the protection of earth by ozone layer.
The Arabic word translated and heaven is [65:12] is Saba’a which means Seven or Many. So it could also mean many and indicate the multiverses but since multiverses are not an established fact I would not comment more on it.
Today science tells us that the universe is composed 20 % of ordinary matter and remaining 80 % of Dark Matter about which almost nothing is known. ( Source )
So , the remaining heavens could also mean the celestial matter called Dark Matter because The Noble Qur’an states :
“And We have certainly beautified the nearest heaven with stars….”
Regarding the Seven ( or many ) earths in Qur’an it is a miracle of The Noble Qur’an which will Insha’Allah be fulfilled in the near future because there is great possibility of other earth like planets and aliens on them according to science which could be many in number.
Agniveer’s , objection on many (or seven) earths shows their lack of scientific knowledge.
The seven heavens and seven earths is actually a miracle of The Noble Qur’an.
So, after having analyzed the evidence (verse 21:30) we find that Quranic model of universe is very much against established scientific facts but it’s in perfect sync with Judaic, Greek view of its time. The author of Quran insists that the heavens can be seen by the unbelievers (or are already known to them).
My Response :
Claims already refuted above.
To be doubly sure that the ‘heaven’ of Quran is NOT the ‘universe’, we look at another verse which unambiguously states that the earth was created first and thereafter the heavens (Universe as per Dr. Naik) were created.
Quran 2:29 “He it is Who created for you all that is on earth. Then He Istawâ (rose over) towards theheaven and made them seven heavens and He is the All-Knower of everything.”
My Response :
The word used in above verse is Summa which also means Then, Moreover , Besides , Simultaneously , Subsequently etc.
So, if we translate it as besides or simultaneously then it is clear that the Heavens and Earth
were created at the same time which is in accordance with The Big Bang theory.
Moreover , The Noble Qur’an does not give a sequence for the creation of Heavens and Earth
which is indicated by the fact the sometimes Allah uses the word Heaven(s) before Earth while in other verse Earth before Heaven.
Indeed, your Lord is Allah , who created the heavens and earth in six days periods and then established Himself above the Throne.
In the above verse Allah mentions Heavens before Earth . In fact the only verse in which Allah actually mentioned the different events in creation is in Surah Nazi’at (79:27-30).
Are you a more difficult creation or is the heaven? Allah constructed it.He raised its height, and He has equally ordered it, Its night He covers with darkness, and its forenoon He brings out (with light).And after that He spread the earth made the earth egg-shaped (like ostrich’s egg, round etc.).
It is clear from The Noble Qur’an that the Heavens and Earth were created simultaneously by The Big Bang.
Now going by Dr. Naik’s terminology ,you get from this verse:
- a universe that was created after the earth was created !! (Allah had to rise over earth to reach the Universe…Enjoy the science!)
- a universe that was smoke while the earth was solid!!!
- a universe that was fragmented into 7 layers!!!
What a disaster!
Dr. Zakir Naik :
The striking congruence between the Qur’aanic verse and the ‘Big Bang’ is inescapable! How could a book, which first appeared in the deserts of Arabia 1400 years ago, contain this profound scientific truth?
Rather, these verses only corroborate that the author of the Quran was only reiterating what the Arabs of 7th century believed in: 7 layers of flat disc earth and 7 layers of solid canopies of heaven on top. All borrowed from Greek, Talmud myths and reproduced by the author of the Quran.
As if all this was not bad enough, Dr. Naik dishonestly translates the word ‘heaven’ as ‘universe’…and despite that, his evidence not only falls short but goes anti the big-bang theory. We hope, being a modern rational man, he would do a ‘baba pilot’ with the Quran as well after reading this article.
My Response :
All foolish claims refuted above. The Smoke objection and flat earth claim will be refuted later.