THE FORMATION OF PETROL
Glorify the Name of your Lord, the Most High: He Who created and moulded; He Who determined and guided; He Who brings forth green pasture, then makes it blackened stubble. (Qur’an, 87:1-5)
As we know, petrol forms from the remains of plants and animals in the sea. Once these have decayed on the sea bed after millions of years, all that is left are oily substances. These, under layers of mud and rock, then turn into petrol and gas. Movements in the Earth’s crust sometimes lead to the sea petrifying and to the rocks containing petrol being buried thousands of metres deep. The petrol that forms sometimes leaks through the pores in the rock layers from several kilometres down, and rises to the surface, where it vaporises (turns into gas), leaving a mass of bitumen behind.
The three elements identified in the first four verses of Surat al-A’la parallel the formation of petroleum. It is quite likely that the term “mar`aa,” meaning “pasture or meadow,” refers to the organically-based substances in the formation of petroleum. The second word of note in the verse is “ahwaa,” used to describe blackish-green, greenish-black, dark or sooty colours. This word can be thought of as describing the waste plant matter accumulated underground gradually turning black, since these words are supported by a third word, “ghuthaa’.” The word “ghuthaa'” translated as “stubble,” can also mean “flood-water plants, plants brought together by waste matter being collected and dispersed around valleys, rubbish, leaves or foam.” In addition to the connotation of “vomiting out” implied in the word, it may also be translated as “to flood forth vomited matter,” and describes the way that the earth “vomits” forth petroleum. In fact, in the light of the formation of petroleum, the way it emerges, its foam-like appearance and its colour, one can better see with what wisdom were employed the words in the verses.
As has been discussed, the plant in the verse turning into a dark and viscous liquid bears a strong resemblance to the formation of petroleum. The description of such a formation over many years, at a time when the formation of petroleum was unknown, is without doubt another proof that the Qur’an is the revelation of Allah.
THE RELATIVITY OF TIME
Today, the relativity of time is a proven scientific fact. This was revealed by Einstein’s theory of relativity during the early part of the 20th century. Until then, it was not known that time was relative, nor that it could change according to the circumstances. Yet, the renowned scientist Albert Einstein proved this fact by discovering the theory of relativity. He showed that time is dependent on mass and velocity.
However, the Qur’an had already included information about time’s being relative! Some verses about the subject read:
… A day with your Lord is equivalent to a thousand years in the way you count. (Qur’an, 22:47)
He directs the whole affair from heaven to Earth. Then it will again ascend to Him on a day whose length is a thousand years by the way you measure. (Qur’an, 32:5)
The angels and the spirit ascend to Him in a day whose length is fifty thousand years. (Qur’an, 70:4)
The fact that the relativity of time is so definitely mentioned in the Qur’an, which began to be revealed in 610, is more evidence that it is a divine book.
DUALITY IN CREATION
Glory be to Him Who created all the pairs: from what the earth produces and from themselves and from things unknown to them. (Qur’an, 36:36)
While “male and female” is equivalent to the concept of “pair,” “things unknown to them,” as expressed in the Qur’an, bears a broader meaning. Indeed, we encounter one of the meanings pointed to in the verse in the present day. The British physicist Paul Dirac, who discovered that matter was created in pairs, won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1933. This finding, known as “parity,” revealed the duality known as matter and anti-matter. Anti-matter bears the opposite characteristics to matter. For instance, contrary to matter, anti-matter electrons are positive and protons negative. This fact is expressed in a scientific source as follows:
… every particle has its antiparticle of opposite charge…
Another example of duality in creation is plants. Botanists only discovered that there is a gender distinction in plants some 100 years ago. (“Wanna C A Miracle: Quran: The Living Miracle,” The Revival 5, Issue 2) Yet, the fact that plants are created in pairs was revealed in the following verses of the Qur’an 1,400 years ago:
It is Allah Who created the heavens with no support-you can see them-and cast firmly embedded mountains on the earth so that it would not move under you, and scattered about in it creatures of every kind. And We send down water from the sky and make every generous plant grow in it, in pairs. (Qur’an, 31:10)
It is He Who made the earth a cradle for you and threaded pathways for you through it and sent down water from the sky by which We have brought forth diverse pairs of plants. (Qur’an, 20:53)
In the same way, fruits, are of two types: male or female. As the Qur’an proclaims:
He stretched out Earth and placed firmly embedded mountains and rivers in it, and made two types [male and female] of every kind of fruit. He covers over day with night. There are signs in that for people who reflect. (Qur’an, 13:3)
The word “zawjayni,” translated as “two types,” comes from “zawj,” meaning “one of a pair.” As we know, fruits are the final product produced by ripening plants. The stage before fruit is the flower. Flowers also have male and female organs. When pollen is carried to the flower and fertilization takes place, they begin to bear fruit. The fruit gradually ripens and starts to release seeds. The fact that fruits have gender-specific features is another piece of scientific information indicated in the Qur’an.
Following the development of the atomic theory of the Greek philosopher Democritus, people used to believe that matter consisted of minute, indivisible and indestructible particles known as atoms. However, advances in the study of atoms have refuted this notion. At the present time, modern science has revealed that the atom, previously regarded as the smallest particle, can actually be split. This fact only emerged in the last century, but was revealed in the Qur’an 1,400 years ago:
… He is the Knower of the Unseen, Whom not an atom’s weight eludes, either in the heavens or in the earth; nor is there anything smaller or larger than that which is not in a Clear Book. (Qur’an, 34:3)
… Not even an atom’s weight eludes your Lord, either on earth or in heaven. Nor is there anything smaller than that, or larger, which is not in a Clear Book. (Qur’an, 10:61)
This verse refers to “atom” and smaller particles still.
Up until 20 years ago, it was believed that the smallest particles were the protons and neutrons which comprise the atom. Very recently, however, even smaller particles of which these themselves consist were discovered. A specialised branch of physics, called “particle physics,” emerged to study these “sub-particles” and their particular behaviour. Particle physics research has revealed that the protons and neutrons which comprise the atoms actually consist of sub-particles known as quarks. The size of these quarks, the basic components of protons, whose small size is beyond human conception, is astonishing: 10-18 (0.000000000000000001 of a metre). (L.M. Ledermann, and D.N. Schramm, “Demonstration: Die Bausteine der Materie,” 1989)
Another point worthy of note is that these verses draw particular attention to the weight of the atom. The word “mithqaal,” in the expression “mithqaalu tharratin” (an atom’s weight) in the above verses, means weight. In fact, it has been discovered that the protons, neutrons and electrons which form the atom are also compounds which give the atom its weight. Therefore, it is yet another scientific miracle of the Qur’an that attention is drawn instead to the weight of the atom and not its size or any other feature. (See Harun Yahya, The Miracle in the Atom, Ta-Ha Publishers, UK, 2004)
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