Earth Formation: What happened on Day 2 of Creation? | Ep 3

Category: Faith & Spirituality, Featured, Highlights, Videos Topics: Islam And Science Views: 1022

The Quran's 41st chapter has four fascinating verses describing the magnificent creation of the earth and solar system. This episode looks at the first two of these verses (9 and 10) and describes the formation of Earth in light of the latest scientific understanding.

The next episode of this series will continue with the next two verses (11 and 12) on the formation of the earth's skies.

A note on the English translation of the Quran used in this episode.
I generally use the Muhammad Asad translation of the Quran, however, I departed from his translation of 41:10 on the use of the word sawāan to propose an additional meaning.

1) Sawāan is an adjective that can mean either equivalent or simultaneous.

2) The M. Asad translation associates this word with the word aqwātahā or subsistence to give the meaning that God "equitably apportioned its (earth's) means of subsistence to all who would seek it: [and all this He created] in four eons." This is a valid interpretation.

3) Alternatively, I have associated sawāan with the words arbaʿati ayyāmin, or "4 days", to mean God created mountains, blessings, and means of subsistence in 4 overlapping eons or phases. My reasons are as follows:

(a) The chapter these verses are in is entitled Fusilat, or "Explained in Detail". When this verse mentions "for those who ask", it more likely refers to those who are asking for a detailed explanation, which is consistent with the title, rather than asking for subsistence.

(b) It has rarely been the case in history that people are given their means of subsistence just by asking. Subsistence is granted by the grace of God after it is earned through work that requires struggle. It has also seldom been the case in human history that subsistence is distributed equitably. The uneven distribution of wealth in the world is a problem Muslims are charged with changing by using Zakat and other charity to distribute to those in need.

(c) The very next verse in the Quran (41:11) addresses the formation of the sky during 2 days of creation, and these 2 days take place simultaneously with the 2 days in 41:9. So, we see an immediate application of the simultaneous days or phases of creation.

(d) From a scientific point of view, the major elements required for the subsistence of the human species include an oxygen-rich atmosphere, water, and plants and animals for food. All of these developed over time in overlapping phases.

(e) According to authentic hadith, the Quran was revealed in 7 ahraf. Some scholars interpret this to mean that some words of the Quran can be pronounced with differences in minor vowels so long as the overall meaning of the verse is not changed. Minor vowels were added to the Quran decades after the prophet's death (pbuh) in order to help non-Arabs pronounce words correctly. In the case of the word sawāan, a change in minor vowels assists in making the proposed interpretation grammatically correct.

Here are links to sites with additional scientific information on this episode.

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  Category: Faith & Spirituality, Featured, Highlights, Videos
  Topics: Islam And Science
Views: 1022

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