Islamic Disuse and Twisting, Etc. of
Zoology, Physiology, Botany
25 Nov 2012
Za. Humans – The Creation.
Zb. Humans in This Life.
Zc. Humans – Their Claimed Next Life.
Ze. Biology (Plants).
Za. Humans – The Creation.
Za1. (From Mission Islam/The Scientific Miracles of the Quran – short: MI/SMQ).
“We (Allah*) created man from a mingled drop…” MI/SMQ claims that the old Arabs impossibly could know that semen is a mixture, and thus this is a proof for divine origin of the Quran. But there is an age old fact: Everything which shrinks when it dries, is a mixture – and semen shrinks when it dries. The claimed “proof” is invalid.
(Yes, we know that also pure water shrinks (evaporates) when left alone – but water does not become dry).
Za1a. (From Mission Islam/The Scientific Miracles of the Quran – short: MI/SMQ).
These are the stages of development of a fetus according to the Quran. MI/SMQ claims that Muhammad impossibly could know this, and the claimed “fact” that this is in accordance with modern medical science, is a proof for divine knowledge (here in Hadiths).
· Nutfah = a small amount or drop of water.
· Alaqah = a leach-like structure.
· Mudghah = a structure like chewed on.
· Idham = bones or skeleton.
· Kisaa ul ‘idham bil-laham = clothing the bones with flesh or muscle
· Al-nash’a = the formation of distinct fetus.
But: One difference between modern embryology and the one in the Quran, is that according to modern says its development is a process continuing all the time – a 9 month long film so to say – whereas the Quran claims the development goes in distinct stages (this was what the “science” of that time said – based on what one believed in Greece and Persia in the even older times) – a few snapshots if you want. The Quran thus in not in accordance with modern science.
One thing is that this as said was the local knowledge at that time – based on old Greek and Persian “science”, so that one needed no divine knowledge to tell Muhammad this – knowledge strengthened by sporadic “mistreatment” of pregnant “enemy” women, from the slaughtering of animals (especially in the start the fetuses are very similar to human ones, and the “stages” of development also are similar) and not least from s, a not too seldom occurring phenomenon showing anybody what a fetus is looking like at different ages.
Another point is that even so, these points are not all correct:
· A fetus never is a drop of water. It even never is a drop of semen like Muhammad believed – he believed the semen was a kind of seed which could start growing when “planted” in a woman). The start of a baby is the melting together of a cell of semen and an egg cell. Muhammad did not know about the egg cell.
· With some goodwill we can say this is ok – seen in every slaughtered female mammal (and every human miscarriage (10 – 20% of all pregnancies, and not less in Arabia at the time if Muhammad)).
· Comments like under b just above.
· But here the Quran is wrong again. Bones and skeleton is NOT what comes at this age. First comes meat, and later bone and cartilage grow inside the meat. A bit strange, as even Muhammad really knew better.
· Once again wrong – see d just above.
· Correct, but this is a matter of course – like seen in every slaughtered highly pregnant mammal and aborted “old” fetus.
The claims that knowledge about fetuses proves divine knowledge at best is nonsense, as it was common “medical” knowledge at that time – and at worst dishonesty (al-Taqiyya – lawful lie or Kitman – lawful half-truth) meant to deceive (also lawful in Islam) people into believing the Quran has divine knowledge and thus must be from a god. (As indicated before, miracle scholars – not to mention lay miracle hunters – do not always look for the truth, but for “proofs” for the Quran, Muhammad, and Allah – true ones or not.)
Za2. (From Mission Islam/The Scientific Miracles of the Quran – short: MI/SMQ).
“He (Allah*) commenced the creation of man from clay; then He made his progeny from an extract of discarded fluid” (32/7-8). Yusuf Ali writes: “- - - from a quintessence of the nature of a fluid despised”. MI/SMQ claims that this – that not all of the semen was making the baby – proves that the Quran must build on divine knowledge. But for one thing anybody knowing that semen is a mixture – see B4 above – may suspect/know that some parts may be more essential than others.
Besides: What is “the quintessence” of semen – or an “extract”? Is it a physical part of it? Or is it f.x. the mystical power of life in the semen?
For one thing this verse does not need divine knowledge and for another at least two conclusions are possible (“A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”) . The claim is invalid as a proof.
Za3. “He (Allah*) has created both sexes, male and female, from a drop of semen - - -“ (53/45-46). The claimed knowledge that the sexes were determined by the man, must have been divine claims MI/SMQ. But is that what this says? There are at least 4 possible meanings:
· Allah created the sex of the child.
· The semen caused the child, but saying nothing about what decided the sex of it.
· The semen caused the child and its sex.
· The most likely explanation: Muhammad did not know about the egg cell, but believed the semen was a kind of seed which could start growing into a baby when “planted” in a woman – and then “naturally” the “seed” also decided the sex of the child, as nothing else could do it. This is the explanation scientists of religion believe in.
4 different alternatives, and on top of all not one of them is proved to be the true meaning. The claim has no value as a proof – the strongest word possible to use is “a possibility” – and that is before one adds the fact that all the errors, etc. in the Quran proves no god was involved in its making or delivery.
Za4. (From Mission Islam/The Scientific Miracles of the Quran – short: MI/SMQ).
“In the name of your Lord (Allah*) Who created man from alaq (according to MI/SMQ this word means “a thing that clings to some place”)” (96/1-3). M. Yusuf Ali says it means “a clot of congealed blood”, and Shakir simply “a clot”.
MI/SMQ claims it needs divine knowledge to know this that early in history. But people living mainly from cattle farming ever so well knows how pregnancy works – they see it every time they slaughter a pregnant female animal. In the brutal Arab culture of strife and war some ones might also have learnt things from mistreating captive women. And not least one can learn a lot about fetuses, etc. from pregnancies (10 – 20% of all pregnancies, and not less in Arabia at the time if Muhammad).
Definitely no divine knowledge necessary = the “proof” is invalid. (“A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion” – and here there are at least 3 possible conclusions for how Muhammad knew about the development of a pregnancy. (And stuff from old Greek or Persian science/knowledge may be a fourth.)
Za5. (From Mission Islam/The Scientific Miracles of the Quran – short: MI/SMQ).
“(We (Allah*)) then - - - formed the lump into a lump and formed the lump into bones and clothed the bones in flesh - - -“. MI/SMQ again claims that this which happen inside a female was hidden knowledge for humans, and have to come from a god. Wrong. See the comments to Za4 just above.
Za6. “It is He (Allah*) Who has created man from water - - -“ (25/54). “- - - We (Allah*) made from water every living thing”. EIT here indicates the Quran’s claimed divine origin by pointing to the well known fact that the human body contains a lot of water.
But leave a chunk of meat on a plate, and you will see that water seeps from it. Also the desert dwellers were well aware of that man drinks a lot of water, and desperately needs it (you may survive 30 – 60 days without food, but only some 3 days without water – less in hot climate. And not forget that f.x. the sweath comes out from the body. It never was a secret that the body contains water. Thus the fact that the body has water no god needed to tell Muhammad. Thus EIT’s arguments here do not prove anything about the claimed divine origin of the Quran.
Worse: Contents of water in the human body is not what the Quran here talks about – EIT is talking beside the point, as the real point is more revealing: The Quran here talks about the creation of Adam – Allah made him and everything else from water.
Here is something you often meet from Muslims and from Islam: The Quran tells man was made from water. Science tells man – or his ultimate forefather - was made in water. “Hipp, hipp, hurray!!! Science is confirming the Quran – on knowledge only a god could have had at that time!!!”
But there are a thousand miles between to be made from water, and to be made in water. Islam’s/Muslims’ celebration and claim here – like too often – both are nonsense. And worse: It is dishonesty, because also Muslims and Islam know ever so well that there is a big difference between to be made in water, and to be made from water.
We also may add that from water only is one of as many as perhaps 13 different ways the Quran claims Allah created Adam – this in spite of that Adam according to the old books only was one person and thus only could be created once.) Thus each time a Muslim claims that it is proved that man is created from water, he/she indirectly but clearly confirms that the 12 other creations in the Quran are wrong. Nice of them to admit there are mistakes in the Quran.
But perhaps the biggest scientific mistake here is that science says that life started in water - and perhaps some 3+ billion years ago – whereas the Quran says man is created from water. Science NEVER said or says that man was created neither from nor in water – man developed on dry land. On top of this there is the difference in time: Depending on what definition you use for man, he developed somewhere between 160ooo-200ooo years ago and some 5 million years ago. The start – creation? – of life as mentioned started 3+ billion years ago. This “bagatelle” divergence of 3 billion years is never mentioned by Muslims – and neither the fact that man developed on land, not in water.
Za7. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
Embryology is a sore spot in Islam. The Quran does not write much about it, but much of what it writes is wrong – then how to make it sound right, and preferably in ways confirmed by modern science, and thus “prove” that the Quran has “divine” knowledge? – knowledge Muhammad could not have had from other sources. Another point: Islam behaves like it is a proved fact that it is Allah who really initiates the pregnancies – but this was never proved. And one more fact: The Quran tells that babies are made from semen (Muhammad believed semen was a kind of seed which might start growing if one planted it in a woman). This is wrong: A baby is made from one cell from the semen + an (From “wireclub “/topix/religion”). Cell from a woman. Any god had known this, but Muhammad not – who made the Quran?
“- - - (Allah*) who created – Created man, out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood” (96/1-2). But no embryo ever was congealed blood. This does not prove the Quran right – it proves it wrong and without a divine origin or knowledge.
EIT tries to explain this away with that the Arab word for congealed blood – “alaq” – also may have other meanings, and it even is likely this is correct. But this still is the normal way of translating this word in the Quran, and worse: As far as we have been able to find “congealed blood” was the original way of understanding the word in this verse. It also as far as we have been able to find out, was the only way to translate it until some Muslims in relatively modern time became aware of that the claim was wrong science.
Unless EIT or others prove that “alaq” can mean a zygote (a fertilized egg) – which it cannot – like EIT and several others try to argue for, this verse far from prove any divine knowledge and thus divine origin of the Quran. It today only proves that Muhammad did not know what he was talking about.
Za8. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“He (man*) is created from a drop emitted – Proceeding (coming*) from between the back bone and the ribs”. EIT here argues for that this must be correct, because in the fetus inside its mother the testicles start their development inside the body of the fetus. Continue this logic, and you may find that your testicles really came from a field in the Mid-West, because the nourishment which made the first start of your “stones” came from bread your mother ate, made from wheat from that field.
But the Quran does not here tell from where your testicles came. It tells from where semen comes. And there is no doubt it comes from the testicles in your scrotum outside your main body – not from “between the back bone and the ribs”. EIT’s “proofs” here are not only invalid, but meaningless – this even more so as he/she builds on twisting of the here very clear and obvious texts. But as said before: For Islam and for many Muslims it is not the truth which counts, but to make the Quran sound like it is the truth.
Extra revealing in this case is that this claim about the semen coming from inside the body, is what the old Greeks believed and it was common “knowledge” in all of what we today call the Middle East at the time of Muhammad - a fact no Muslim mentions. Muhammad simply used what he believed was correct science. Any god had known better – then who made the Quran?
Also see Za7 just above.
Za9. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“- - - we (Allah*) created you (human*) from a tiny drop - - -“. EIT here argues that science has found that only very little of the semen is needed to make a woman pregnant – and indirectly that this only could be divine knowledge at the time of Muhammad.
But for one thing the Quran says “a tiny drop”, not “a fragment of” the semen – EIT debates something the Quran else than the Quran’s words. For another the result of an ejaculation only is “a tiny drop” – depending a little on to what you compare it, and/or on how you use the expression. For a third: Before Muhammad started his mission, in Arabia sex was one of “the two delightful things” (the other one was alcohol), and you bet that people knew from experience that if the man was too late to “jump off”, it only took a tiny drop left inside the woman to make a baby (it is documented in Hadiths that Muhammad and the people was well aware of “coitus interruptus” – but Muhammad prohibited it; when you raped a female captive (“lawful and good” to quote the Quran (8/69)), it was for Allah and not for you to decide if there should come a baby afterwards or not).
As there are more than one way to understand what Muhammad here meant (and at least two of them were common human knowledge) – and it is likely he meant that one ejaculation was a tiny drop – this proves no divine knowledge in the Quran. Also see Za7 above.
Za10. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“And (Allah*) made his (man’s*) progeny from a quintessence of the nature of a fluid despised (semen*)” (32/8). EIT argues for – but never proves – that this must refer to the fact that only one spermatozoon (male sex cell) is what it takes to make a baby (something which only a god could know at that time). But where is the proof for that this is what Muhammad meant? - unless this is proved, EIT’s claim at best is a claim (and hardly that, as he talks about something else than the Quran says) and not a proof.(“A proof is one or more proved facts whivh can give only one conclusion”.)
But the “quintessence” may as well refer to the “power of life” which all and everybody knew and know is found in semen.
Invalid proof – for one thing EIT does not prove that Muhammad meant what EIT indicates, and for another there are at least two possible explanations - - - and that Muhammad mentioned “the power of life/the quintessence” to his followers without any more explanations, is the most likely case, as this was things they knew well. If he meant a spermatozoon, he would have had to explain what it was. (Actually it is not even proved that it is Allah who does things here and not f.x. nature.) Also see Za7 above.
Za11. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“Verily We (Allah – claimed, but not proved*) created from a drop of mingled sperm” (76/2). This proves nothing simply because nobody knows exactly what it means – Islam speculates, but nobody knows the meaning. Also see Za7 above.
Za12. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“That He (Allah*) did create in pairs – male and female, from a seed when lodged (in its place (Muhammad believed semen was a kind of seed which could start growing into a baby when “planted” in a woman)). What kind of “Evidence that Islam is true” is this? Absolutely every sane human knows that babies come in two versions!
Also see Za7 above.
Za13. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“- - - in three veils of darkness”. This is one of the places where it is easy for Muslims to “prove” the Quran and its divine origin: Here you can chose from one layer (“the mother’s body”) and up to at least 6 (in addition to the 3 mentioned by EIT there are at least the meat and the inner and the outer skin of the mother). Just pick the correct number, and you have a “proof”!!
“Proofs” of this kind and quality are not even proofs or claims, but unintended jokes. You find some of them among the “proofs” for the Quran – f.x. the number of “heavens” in the atmosphere and the number of “Earths” inside Earth. Also see Za7 above.
Za14. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“Man We (Allah - but see Za7 above) did create from the quintessence (of clay) - - -“ (23/12-14). This is the start of verses EIT claims are “Evidence for that Islam is true”. But neither EIT, nor other Muslims ever comment on what this sentence proves in that connection. If you force them to answer, you will get some mumbo-jumbo (sorry for the expression) about that the Quran correctly tells that man is made from different materials”. But that definitely is not what the sentence says. In addition: Nobody knows what “the quintessence (of clay)” is.
If this “proof” proves anything at all about the truth of Islam, it is that something is very wrong, and that the writer of this did not know what he was talking about – and any omniscient god knows everything. Then who made the Quran?
Some “evidence” – especially when you know how strongly many Muslims claim that the Quran’s claim that man is mad from water, is proved by science to be the truth.
Za15. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“- - - then We (Allah – but see Za7 above*) made the sperm into a clot of congealed blood (wrong*), then of that clot We made a (fetus) lump; then We made out of that lump bones and clothed the bones with flesh (wrong succession – cartilage/bones grow inside the meat*), then We developed out of it another creature (a baby*) - - -“. One thing is that there are scientific errors here – in a verse intended to prove the Quran has divine knowledge and never a mistake, so that the Quran must be from a god (all the mistakes prove the opposite).
Another point here is that in a community living mainly from animal farming, it is no secret how a fetus develops. One meets it every time a pregnant animal is slaughtered. In a war society like in the old Arabia one also might learn such things from mutilating captives – pre-Muslim Arabia was about as inhuman as Muhammad’s Muslim Arabia. Thus even if the errors had not destroyed EIT’s claim here, it had proved absolutely nothing: What is common knowledge in a society, far from proves that it needs a god to repeat that knowledge.
We may add here that Muhammad is excused for believing that semen became a lump of congealed blood. That early and in a lot of blood and gore it is difficult to see the fetus. More mysterious is the claim that the bones are made first (all the same you even today meet Muslims claiming this is the reality), as it is impossible for cartilage/bones to grow, unless it grows inside something with blood vessels which can transport nourishment and oxygen to it.
Za16. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
The Quran tells that Allah (but see Za7 above) gives babies sight and hearing. Why EIT places this among “Evidences for that Islam is true”, is a mystery. Unless it first is proved that it really is Allah who does this – and not another god or f.x. nature – it is totally without any value as a proof for the claimed divine delivery of the Quran or for that Islam is anything but a made up religion which gave Muhammad riches for bribes and women, and not least gave him power.
Za17. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“A voice (the baby Jesus talking during his process of being born – believe it if you want*) called from under her (Mary*), ‘Do not grieve! Your Lord (Allah – though the Bible tells her god was Yahweh, not Allah and according to normal ways of evaluating sources, the Bible here is more reliable than the Quran*) has placed a small stream at your feet. Shake the trunk of the palm (the trunk of a date palm is 1.5 to 2 feet thick – try to shake it*). Eat and drink and delight your eyes….”. EIT tells that dates are very nourishing and healthy for women giving birth, and thus that this proves something (there is easy access to dates also in the west, but we have never heard them recommended for highly pregnant women).
But the Quran here is not giving medical advices to Mary – it simply is trying to comfort her.
Another point is that the story about the birth of Jesus is totally different from the one in the Bible. As the story in the Bible is told by people really knowing Jesus, it is likely the Bible is more reliable. This even more so as it is known that Muhammad “borrowed” this story from one of the many made up legends, etc. known in the area.
This story proves nothing about the truth of Islam unless it first is proved that the story is true.
Za18. (From Islamic cultural center of Iceland – ICCI. Also see Ab19.)
“Then We (Allah*) develop the drop (of semen – and note that it says “the drop”, not an infinitisemal part of a drop or something like that*) into a hanging (ICCI does not explain what “a hanging” is, but it evades the normal and obviously wrong words; “into a clot of blood” – a zygote or fetus never is a clot of blood*), then develop the hanging into a chewed lump of flesh”. ICCI tells that a fetus at an early stage looks like a chewed lump of meat, and has cherry-picked a translation saying this (Yusuf Ali, Shakir, and Asad all says just “a lump”). But no matter what it looks like, members of a culture living mainly from (cattle) farming, ever so well knew what a fetus looked like – and by mutilating women during raids and wars they also easily would find out that fetuses look pretty alike in different mammals. The same goes for miscarriages (10 – 20% of all pregnancies, and not less in Arabia at the time if Muhammad).
Even if ICCI is should be right about what an early fetus looked like, Muhammad needed no information from Allah to know this – any farmer and any nomad at that time would know details like that. The same and even more so would anyone who had seem miscarried fetuses. The claimed “proof” for divine knowledge in the Quran is invalid.
Za19. (From The House of the Crescent Moon – HCM.)
”The most amazing thing is the way that the mind behind the Koran knew what a human embryo looked like in its initial phase, in which it is so small that it cannot be seen except through a microscope (they here refer to 75/37-38*)”. This is dishonesty, because neither these two verses nor any other verses in the entire Quran describe an embryo at that stage. The smallest stage which is mentioned anywhere in the Quran, is “a clot of coalesced blood” – which says nothing about the zygote’s or early embryo’s shape – and then “a leach-like clot”. But a leach-like clot is visible to the eye, and needs no divine revelation to describe what it looks like. Invalid proof.
As embryos at that early age look pretty similar in the big mammals, included humans, the old Arabs had easy access to this kind of information through slaughtering. There also is the fact that they can have gotten information from mutilating the bodies of female captives – the old Arabs were pretty inhuman, and it is common knowledge that some men get sexual satisfaction from cutting in a woman (others get the sweet feeling of power from doing such things).
But the fact which really makes this Islamic claim invalid, is miscarriages (10–20% of all pregnancies, and not less in Arabia at the time if Muhammad). This happens at all times during a pregnancy (though more frequent the first 8 weeks) and gives good information about what a fetus looks like at different ages. This claimed “proof” is dismissed.
Za20. (From The House of the Crescent Moon – HCM.)
Verse 71/13-14 tells that humans are created in stages. HCM claims this proves that the Quran knew about the evolution theory.
· Other places in the Quran the book clearly shows that it is not talking about the evolution of man (the evolution theory is about the evolution of man), but about the “evolution” (growth) of a fetus. This is so obvious that there is no way HCM does not know this. But they use a dishonest meaning of the words to be able to - in a double meaning – to produce a “proof” for that the Quran has divine knowledge.
· But even if it had been true that a fetus developed in stages, it had proved no divine knowledge, because this was common “knowledge” at the time of Muhammad – they had it from the old Greeks (who were wrong on this point).
Conclusion: HCM is dishonest here when they claim this is about the evolution of man. Thus this wrong “proof” about how a fetus grows (it is a continuous process, not development in stages) is not only wrong, but also irrelevant for the topic – the development of man. And the fact that the way a fetus develops is wrongly described by the old Islamic books, prove they have not got the information from a god – any god had known better.
Za21. (From Quran.org – Qo.)
“The Quran mentions that all life “originated” from water (21/30), and that man himself is “created” from water - - -“. Very correct – the Quran says this (well, not quite correct: The Quran says not “originated from water” but “made from water” – the miracle hunter has – like normal for many miracle hunters – twisted the text a little, to make his/her conclusion look true.). But:
· No – absolutely no - life is made from water. The original life started in water, but there is a fundamental difference between being made from water and being made in water.
· The original life forms started in water, but later many life forms went ashore, and a multitude of later life forms did not even evolve in water – not to mention from water – but on dry land. This includes man.
· No scientist says that man was made in water – and once more; absolutely not from water like the Quran says.
· The claim that 21/30 shows divine knowledge is one of the many wrongly claimed “miracles” claimed to “prove” the Quran. And worse: This is very elementary knowledge. There is no chance Qo does not know this, if he/she has fulfilled elementary school. What do you conclude from such a fact about Qo’s honesty? – and about the value of his/her “proofs”? And not to forget: The claim that life – and man – were made from water, is one of many proofs for that the Quran is NOT from a god – any god had known better.
· In spite of Qo’s claim, science stated that man developed on dry land, not in/from water. Also this makes Qo’s claim – not proof, but claim – meaningless.
But one small tit-bit: The Quran claims that Adam was created in 13 different ways (or 5-6-7 if you lump similar ways together). If Qo here has proved that man is made from water, an interesting point is that then at the same time he/she has proved that all the other ways the Quran claims Adam was created, are wrong. And it is quite an admission from strong Muslims that they prove that at least 12 points in the Quran are wrong – 12 mistakes are more than enough to prove that the book is not from any omniscient god, as no omniscient god makes mistakes.
“It is cited in the Quran, the holy Book of the Muslims, that human beings are produced from a mixture of secretions from the male and the female”.
Wrong. A secrete is a homogenous fluid and always inanimate (but secreted from living beings). Semen is no secrete – it is live sex cells swimming in a secrete. And an egg cell just is an egg cell.
Another fact is that none who have told this has told where it is written in the Quran, and we have been unable to find it – the closest we have found is that semen is a mixed fluid.
Zb. Humans – this life.
Zb1. (Sample from “Examine The Truth” - ETT).
“The mother shall give suck to their children for two whole years - - -“ (2/233). It is quite correct that this could be beneficial for babies/children, but it proves nothing about the Quran, as this was known in many cultures that giving suck for a long time gave better survival for the small ones. They did not know that the reason was that the mother’s milk meant correct nourishment + antibiotics, etc., but in several cultures they had observed the result. Therefore this point is invalid as a proof for anything divine behind this verse.
Islam and its Muslims often have problems with the rules for making logically correct conclusions, and they also often seem to be unable to - or do not want to - see the difference between words like “a coincidence”, “possible”, “perhaps”, “probably”, “likely”, etc., etc., and the word “proof”. If they like a point, they use it or twist it and name it “a proof”. But a definition for a proof is: “A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”. Here there at least are 2 possible conclusions: ETT’s and that the old Arabs had noticed or heard from others that the survival rate for babies/infants was higher with long time sucking. Thus the claim is invalid as a proof.
Zb2. (Sample from “Examine The Truth” - ETT).
“Nay! If he (a disobedient man*) ceases not, We (Allah*) will catch him by the forelock, A lying, sinning forelock”. A. Yusuf Ali’s translation: “Let him beware! If he desists not, We will drag him by the forelock – a lying, sinning forelock” (96/15-16).
The background for this quote is that “to lead by the forelock” is a standard Arab expression – and an Arabism (something in the Quran only Arabs would understand without an explanation) – which means that the one leading has total dominance over the one being lead. As this was and is a standard expression, one can be pretty sure this is how Muhammad’s followers understood this sentence.
Now one of more than 60 (64 if we remember correctly) translations of the Quran to English – M.H.Shakir – has used the word “forehead” instead of “forelock”. ETT does not prove that this is the correct translation, and that all the other translators are wrong. He/she further does not prove that Muhammad in case did not mean the forelock, but the forehead, and not even the forehead but the frontal lobe inside the forehead – there is a marked difference between “forehead” - not to mention “forelock” - and what is “inside – or behind – the “forehead” . All the same he uses the claim that this is what Muhammad really meant, as a “proof” for that Muhammad had hidden knowledge (this in spite of that Muhammad himself in the Quran tells that he was unable “to know the unseen” = he had no hidden knowledge = he was unable to make foretelling/prophesies (6/50, 7/188, 10/20, 72/26)). At least two of the “facts” behind ETT’s “conclusion” are not proved: Not that the correct translation is “forehead”, and not that Muhammad in case meant the frontal lobe inside the forehead.
This claim/”proof” from ETT even from the start on is highly dubious, as the expression was a standard one with a clear and specific meaning in Arabia – a fact it is impossible that ETT did not know about. We are back to the question of honesty in Islam.
Islam and its Muslims also often have problems with the rules for making logically correct conclusions, and they also often seem to be unable to - or do not want to - see the difference between words like “a coincidence”, “possible”, “perhaps”, “probably”, “likely”, etc., etc., and the word “proof”. If they like a point, they use it or twist it and name it “a proof”. But a definition for a proof is: “A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”. As at least two of the “facts” here are not proved, ETT’s claim is invalid as a proof (and especially as “to be lead by the forelock” was a standard Arab expression, even the possibility for that his claim can be even a slightly possible indication for something, is very small – and there is a long way between “a slightly possible indication” to “a proof”.)
The argumentation behind ETT’s claim here, is quite similar to another Muslim claim: One place the Quran compares Earth with an ostrich’s nest, which is a flat piece of earth. But one of the 60+ translators to English has mistranslated it to mean an ostrich’s egg. And many Muslims cherry-pick this wrong translation to “prove” that Muhammad knew that the Earth is a globe (in spite of that each and every place in the Quran the Earth is compared to something, it is to something flat). They thus indirectly, but clearly, tell that the Quran is wrong each time the book indicates Earth is flat. Well, everybody know that Earth is not flat, but it is nice to see that Muslims confirm that there are errors in the Quran.
Zb3. (From Mission Islam/The Scientific Miracles of the Quran – short: MI/SMQ).
“Does not man reckon he will be left uncontrolled (without a purpose)? (75/36) Was he not once a drop of ejected semen? (75/37)”. This IM/SMQ claims proves that the Quran says that only a part of the semen results in a baby. But for one thing these two verses are not directly connected – the second only is a warning in case man reckons wrongly. And for another the second sentence does not tell anything but what man has known since shortly after Adam: Even a small drop of semen may cause a baby – f.x. by a second too late “interuptus” in a coitus interuptus.
The only thing which may have made MI/SMQ able to claim this is a proof for divine knowledge, is a combination of wishful thinking and lack of critical evaluation of his/her own thoughts. There is nothing here proving knowledge more than the old Arabs – and most of the rest of humanity – had long before Muhammad.
Zb4. (From Mission Islam/The Scientific Miracles of the Quran – short: MI/SMQ).
“Yes, We (Allah*) are able to put together in perfect order the very tips of his fingers”. MI/SMQ claims this refers to finger prints, but there is not the slightest reference to finger prints neither here or anywhere else in the Quran – the finger prints were totally meaningless for Muhammad and for his followers, but of course is a convenient claim to make for MI/SMQ, as if it had been true, it had been an indication for something.
There are two much more likely reasons for why the finger tips are mentioned. One is that Allah was able to recreate even the most extreme/distant parts of the body. The other and perhaps as likely one is that in a war culture the finger tips of a warrior were very essential to him, because without them it was difficult for him f.x. to operate the arrow on a bow.
For one thing here is not proved that the Quran talks about the finger prints. For another at least 3 possible alternatives exists. The claim is invalid as a proof for anything.
Zb5. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“From a drop of sperm He (Allah*) created him (man*) and proportioned him. Then He eases the way for him” (80/19-20). EIT claims that the last sentence refers to the birth and what the body does to make a birth possible – and that this proves something.
But he has forgotten(?) the next sentence: “Then He causes him to die - - -“. It is much more likely that the Quran here takes the existence of a man in a nutshell: Allah causes him to be born, then gives him a good life, and then causes him to die.
For one thing EIT’s words are arguments, not proofs – it is not proved that Muhammad talked about what EIT claims - and for another thing here are possible at least two explanations. Both these two facts each makes it impossible to use this text as a proof for anything unless additional proofs exists. (“A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”.)
Zb6. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“Allah knows what every female bears (baby*) and every shrinking (births*) of the womb and every swelling (pregnancies*).” This proves nothing about a divine origin of the Quran, unless it first is proved that Allah really knows this. Without such a proof, this just is a claim, not a proved fact. (“A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”.
In addition: Even if it is proved that Allah knows this, the verse is no proof for divine knowledge and this for divine delivery of the Quran, because such things also are easy for humans to see – such information is not necessarily from a god.
Zb7. “(Non-Muslims*) We (Allah*) shall soon cast into the Fire (Hell*); and as often as it is roast through, We shall change them for fresh skins”. EIT means this shows that the Quran writes about the pain receptors, something Muhammad could not know about, and implicit; that the Quran must be from a god.
This logic is nonsense. Anybody who has burnt himself/herself knows how painful it is. It takes no more than that knowledge for a sadist to wish to do this. Also it is – if not common knowledge, then at least well known – that deep burns destroys the ability to feel pain (the nerve endings registering pain are destroyed). This would make any sadist want to put a new skin on his victims, so as they should feel more pain.
This “proof” simply is too naïve.
Zb8. (From The House of the Crescent Moon – HCM.)
“And as for the human body, the Koran somehow knew that semen came from within the torso”.
· This one is unbelievable, because the semen does not come from within the torso, but from “the stones” – the testes – in the scrotum outside the torso (because the temperature inside the body is some degrees too high for the production of semen). What does is show that a wrong zoological “fact” is claimed to be a proof for divine knowledge in the Quran? The claim is totally invalid as a proof. And the claim that the semen comes from within the torso even proves that things are very wrong in the Quran.
· Another point is that even if it had been true, it had proved nothing, as this is what the Arabs’ teachers of science – the Greek – believed. And what is common belief, is no proof for divine knowledge in the Quran.
Zd1. (From “Creation and Evolution in the Holy Quran”, by Hassan Ali El-Najjar – HAN):
“Several verses of the Holy Quran have stated clearly that every living being has been created from water”. It is very correct that the Quran states this some places - - - and every Muslim skips the fact that this is wrong. What science says is that life was created in water – there are light-years between being created in water, and being created from water. May be worse: Science far from says that “every living being” is created in/from water. What is says is that the first life forms started in water. There is a very big difference between science and the Quran here – like on many other points.
Another fact HAN here forgets(?) to mention, is that at least man – Adam - according to the Quran was created in as many as perhaps 13 different ways. An impossibility as there only was one Adam according to the old books. (And only one of those was from – not in, but from (wrong) – water. And if Muslims claim it is proved man was created from water, this is a clear statement from Muslims for that the other 12 creations are wrong in the Quran.)
Zd2. (From “The Scientific Evidence That God (Allah*) Exists - - -“, by H. A. El-Najar (HAN)):
“- - - a female ant said:” HAN tells that this is a proof for that the Quran had the divine knowledge that there only existed female workers among ants.
· It is not said that that there were only worker ants around. Muhammad may have said this to stress the difference from scattered male ants around.
· Muhammad may not have had the faintest idea that working ants are females, but only wanted to stress that it was a female one – f.x. as a parallel to the fact that human females often are more careful than men.
· Actually the fact that he tells it was a female, indicates that he did not know that the workers only were females – if he had known, there was no reason for him to mention the sex unless he wanted to stress that the workers all were females, something he does not do.
But this claim once more shows how hopeless many of the Islamic “proofs” are. “A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”. Here nothing is proved except that Muhammad said this special ant was a female, and in addition there are at least 2 or more possible conclusions on why he said it, and at least 3 or more possible conclusions on what he really meant (“this is a female ant among the two sexes” or “it was a female ant who said it, as naturally the females are more careful” or “it was a female, because only female workers exists”.) This is invalid as a proof.
Another and even heavier point is that the story about Solomon and the ants is borrowed from a known old and made up legend, and thus all HAN’s claims here are nonsense.
To be exact: These stories – also repeated other places in the Quran - about King Solomon, the ants, the jinns slaving for him, the hoopoe, and not to mention the Queen of Sabah – are fantastic like were they from a fairy tale - - - which is what they are: They are “borrowed” from the made up - apocryphal, and hardly even apocryphal - scripture “Second Targum of Ester”. No god needs to steal old fairy tales and retell them with small – or big – twists to make them fit his religion/tales, and then call them facts. But Muhammad often did so. This is the reason why his contemporaries so often said that what he told just were old tales – they simply recognized the legends, fairy tales and folklore stories.</p>
To say the least of it: It is somewhat special to take a made up story and claim it is a proof for divine origin of the Quran (but this is far from the only such case neither in the Quran, nor in Hadiths, nor among Muslims).
Zd3. (From “The Scientific Evidence That God (Allah*) Exists - - -“, by H. A. El-Najar (HAN)):
“Then (you female bee) eat from all the fruits and (you female bee) follow the ways of your Lord (Allah*) laid down (for you). There emerges from their bellies a drink (honey*) - - -“ (16/69). This HAN claims proves that the Quran knew that it was the female bee who produced honey, and that this was impossible for the old Arabs to know.
One detail is that the Quran is wrong when it indicates that the honey is made from fruits – it is made from the nectar of flowers. Any god had known this.
By enormously far more serious is that HAN here simply has falsified the Quran to make up “a scientific ‘proof’”. The inclusions “(you female bee)” does not exist in the Quran and is simply added by HAN. Also there nowhere else in the Quran is indicated that the honey bees are the female ones.
Do you understand what we mean when we points to that for many Muslims the truth and honesty is not always the main thing, but to by honest or dishonest means “prove” that the Quran is true and thus that Islam is from a god? And do you understand why we say it is time consuming to study Islamic literature, as every piece of information has to be checked because too much is untrue?
Another point is that even if the Quran had told that only the female bees collected nectar, that needed no miracle – it is no problem for one who knows bees to see the difference between the queen (the only mature female in a hive), the males, and the workers (immature females).
Zd4. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT.).
“There is not an animal (that lives) on earth, nor flies on wings, but (form part of) communities like you (humans*)” (6/38). This EIT “proves” to be the truth by means of photos of flock animals on different levels. To a degree Muhammad was right if he only looked at the macro fauna (=bigger animals) in the sparsely “animated” dry Arabia. But holy heaven how wrong ha was many other places!!
The only thing this verse proves, is that there are mistakes in the Quran.
Zd5. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“Nothing holds them (the birds*) up but (the power of) Allah”. What EIT wants to prove here, is unclear, because there are no arguments or indications. But it is as well, as they would be wrong: What holds the birds up, are the laws of aerodynamics – the same laws which keep the planes up.
Zd6. “He (Allah*) brings forth the living from the dead, and produces the dead from the living”. The Quran here talks about Allah’s claimed power to create, kill, and recreate. EIT indicates that it means Muhammad knew the life cycle on Earth, and as it is listed among the “proofs of Islam”, he/she obviously means that the knowledge of the life cycle proves divine knowledge in the Quran. But please show us one single normal human being – not to mention a farmer or a cattle farmer – who does not know the life cycle here on Earth.
This point simply is too naïve to claim as a proof. The same goes for a comment on bees – too invalid as a proof to squander time on commenting on.
Zd7. “- - - there issues from within their (the bees’) bodies a drink of varying colors, wherein is healing for men”. Here EIT refers to “an Australian PhD student, Shona Blair”, who claims that honey is an efficient killer of bacteria, etc. It is not given neither university, nor the source for the “information” (it has not been in the normal scientific papers), and is thus impossible to check. But EIT must be understood like this is proving something. As the claim is impossible to check on, it also is impossible to evaluate. But there is a general agreement in science that the medical value of honey is much overstated. And wht is sure is thar the old followers of Muhammad, did not use honey on wounds to help the healing (by killing the germs).
Zd8. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“- - - one of the ants said: ‘O ye ants, get into your habitations, lest Solomon and his hosts crush you (under foot) without knowing it” (27/17-18). One basic fact is that this is anthropomorphism – the belief that dead matter, plants, and/or animals can think, talk, and react like humans. This is something you normally find in primitive religions and in fairy tales.
Leaving that aside: EIT here indicates that the fact that there are similarities between humans and ants, prove that the Quran is right here.
· If you go looking, you will find similarities between any two living beings on Earth – f.x. between man and the E. coli bacteria.
· When comparing two life-forms, what counts is not the likenesses but the sum of likenesses and differences. EIT only pick – cherry-pick – some superficial likenesses and do not mention the much more fundamental differences. He/she is not looking for the truth, but for finding honest or dishonest proofs for that the Quran may sound right.
· EIT here does not even touch the two fundamental points: An ant is not able to make long and coherent sentences. And an ant is not able to speak load enough for Solomon to hear it, and in a language Solomon could understand .
· Ants do not have a brain large enough to be able to master a complicated language or to construct long sentences. This part of the Quran’s claim is wrong – a physical and zoological fact.
· Ants do not have the organs necessary to produce spoken words – another physical and zoological fact.
· Even if ants had had such organs, they are too small to make loud enough speech for humans to hear – what sounds insects make which we are able to hear, are chirps, etc. not sounds made by manipulating the breathing of air = speech. Yet another physical and zoological fact.
· And even if ants had been able to manipulate the breathing air in such ways that they could produce words, they are so small, that the words/sounds would be too high-pitched for the human ear to hear. One more physical and zoological fact. And all the same the next verse – 27/19 (a verse EIT forgets(?) to mention) – shows that Solomon heard and understood the ant’s speech.
· EIT in vague words claims that ants are able to talk to each other and “communicate sophisticated messages” – like good Muslims he/she just claims, but never proves the claims. There mainly are two ways for ants to communicate between themselves: To touch “antennas” – and this ant on the dirt impossibly touched Solomon on his horse. And by means of smell – pheromones. But humans cannot smell pheromones except in high concentrations, and even then humans do not know what the different smells mean.
· A basic fact here: In spite of EIT’s made up and wrong claim that the ants can “communicate sophisticated messages” they only can communicate basic ones – like “I am here”, “get away – I am ready to fight”, “for new source of food follow me”, etc., etc.
· The fact simply is that the story about Solomon and the ant is borrowed from an old and made up story: “The second Targum of Esther”.
· And another fact: What EIT does here is not to present proofs, but to present arguments. Arguments are not proofs. (EIT – and many other Muslims – often do this.)
· This point from EIT is totally invalid as a proof.
Zd9. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“We (Allah*) give you (humans*) a drink (milk*) of what is inside their (some animals’*) bodies, coming from a conjunction between the contents of the intestines and the blood, a milk pure and pleasant for those who drink” (16/66). Here is another case of “correcting” the texts of the Quran to make it more scientifically correct: EIT quotes: “- - - from a conjunction of the contents of the intestines and the blood - - -“. What the Quran really says is “- - - from betwixt the faces and the blood - - -“ (M. H. Shakir), “From what is within their bodies between excretion and blood” (A. Yusuf Ali). EIT then tries to prove that the Quran contains divine knowledge by telling how milk is produced. But the Quran does not at all talk about how it is produced, only where – and it is not even there correct: The milk producing organs in an animal is in direct contact with the blood, but not with faces.
An invalid “proof” – partly because EIT argues about something outside the Quran’s text and misses the point (a point it is difficult to explain away, as the Quran’s words here are clear).
Zd10. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“Why pork is bad” (pork is forbidden in 2/173). EIT here tries to prove that the taboo the Quran has on pork, is from good science (and thus from divine knowledge). He/she gives a list of negative claimed facts about the pig and pork – some is correct, some is unknown to us even though we read a lot of varied scientific literature, and some is scientific gobbledygook.
The real fact is that nobody knows why Islam put a taboo in pork, except that it is one of the many pagan rules Muhammad took over from the older and pagan Arab culture and religion. The normal “explanation” is the risk for trichinosis, but there always was an easy way to avoid that: Fry or boil the pork well, and you kill the parasite causing it – and you get no trichinosis. Science speculates that the real reason was that pigs to a large degree eat food also humans can eat, and that thus the production of pork was too expensive for communities, especially in times with little food, and that, therefore, leaders put the taboo on it.
What however is sure, is that EIT gives no proof for that 2/173 is based on divine knowledge or for that such claimed divine knowledge behind the verse proves anything about the Quran. He/she only gives some arguments for that pork may be bad (and none for the positive sides – contradicting EIT’s claims pork is by food scientist reckoned to be high quality, nourishing food, especially if you take away the fat if you are overweight). And arguments – and especially arguments not backed by documentation – are not proofs, and even more so if the arguments like here may give more than one conclusion/explanation. (“A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”.)
Zd11. (From Islamic cultural center of Iceland – ICCI. Also see Ab19.)
“Only harmless rays (are*) let in”. A claim which according to ICCI “proves” the Quran’s claim that Allah has placed the (7 – not pointed to by ICCI) heaven(s) as a roof over Earth for defence. But
· Earth is not hit only by rays – the defence against meteor are non-existing, except for the very smallest.
· Also rays harmful to humans penetrate to Earth, even though a large percent of them are stopped.
· Further: Rays harmful to humans in too large doses – f.x. UV – penetrates to Earth in large quantities.
· Rays harmful to MANY other kinds of living beings penetrates to Earth in large quantities.
“A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”. Here at least the claims that there really is a “roof” and that this in case is made by Allah, are not proved, + at least some of the claim is wrong, and at least 2 conclusions are possible (= even if there existed a “roof” this could be made by a god or by nature if nothing further is proved). Invalid as a proof, not to mention as a scientific proof.
Zd12. (From The House of the Crescent Moon – HCM.)
“- - - the precocious zoological knowledge of the Koran, such as its impressive knowledge of precisely where the milk is made inside the body”. And HCM claims this proves 16/66: “From within their (female mammals/cows*) bodies between excretion and blood, We (Allah*) produce, for your (humans’*) drink, milk - - -“.
· For one thing the claim is wrong – the Quran does not say exactly from where the milk comes, only that it comes from some place inside the animal/cow, something everybody can see. And nothing which is common knowledge, is a proof for divine knowledge. This “proof” is invalid.
· Even if the Quran had told exactly from where the milk comes, it had been no proof for divine knowledge in or origin of the Quran. In a nation and culture which to a large degree are based on animal farming and nomads, such things are easy to find out when slaughtering female animals. It is highly likely the old Arabs knew exactly where in a cow’s milk was produced – from their slaughtering. But in the Quran it only is said it came from within the animal. Definitely not something which proves divine knowledge in the Quran. This “proof” is so naïve that we not only should declare it wrong, but dismiss it totally - - - and the same to the brain(s) of HCM, as this has nothing to do with a proof. (“A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion”.)
Ze. Botany (plants).
Ze1. (From “The Scientific Evidence That God (Allah*) Exists - - -“, by H. A. El-Najar (HAN)):
“Allah has created plants in pairs (male and female)..." And he says this is a proof for verses 20/53, 13/4, 31/10, 36/36.
The only thing this proves is that neither Muhammad nor HAN knew/knows what they are talking about. Most plants do not exist in pairs of male and female. The normal (though there are exceptions) is that both the male and female parts of the reproduction system grow on each plant, and normally even in the same flower = they are hermaphrodites.
This is not a proof for that the Quran has divine knowledge, but for that it does not have so. Any – any – god had known this.
Some science in the Quran.
(We may add that HAN – Hassan Ali El-Najjar – claims to have studied at the University of Georgia. This may well be true, but neither his skill at logic nor at analyzes gives that impression. Also his honesty is unimpressive – it is not possible that a man with university education does not know that at least that some of his claims are wrong (f.x. something as obvious as that most plants are not found in pairs, but grow both male and female sexual parts on the same plant and very often even in the same flower. All the same he/she twists facts and texts to make the Quran look true. Impressive.)).
Ze2. (From “Evidence that Islam is true” - EIT).
“And everything We (Allah*) have created in pairs” (51/49). “Glory to Allah, Who created in pairs all things that the Earth produces - - -“. EIT is trying to solve the blunder by claiming that Muhammad also meant that male and female parts on one and the same flower, made a pair. And further adds a list of non-living things which can be paired together – but is unlucky enough some places to pair together not pairs, but opponents (f.x. matter – antimatter, electron – positron), or things which are not pairs (f.x. proton – neutron – often together, but not pairs, right and wrong – definitely opponents, not pairs). And he/she tries to secure his/her “proof”, by indicating that this had to be divine knowledge at that time, and that thus the Quran is from a god.
What is the pair of f.x. water, stone, milk, clouds, etc., etc., etc., etc.?
But EIT has overlooked(?) the words in 51/49 “- - - that the Earth produces - - -“. What “the Earth produces” – at least mainly – means things that live and grow. (A number of the samples on his/her list are not things the Earth produces, no matter what definition you use for what “Earth produces”).
And please do not tell us that the members of a people and a culture living mainly from farming and saw that all animals and insects, etc. had sex to propagate, did not get the idea that this could be similar for plants. But the Quran does not say that Allah made sex for plants, only that he made everything in pairs – and most plants does not exist in pairs.
Worse – at least in numbers: One-celled beings do not exist in pairs – and have no sex body parts even – but propagate by splitting in two. EIT has not even tried to explain these millions and more beings not existing in pairs. And there are all the small animals which are hermaphrodites.
As for non-living things which do not come in pairs, it is not difficult to make a list: Iron, granite, most stars, planets, just to mention some.
This claimed “proof” is invalid, to say the least of it. This even more so as it is never proved that it was Allah and not f.x. nature which did/does the creation, and also for that reason the claim is invalid as a proof for anything divine. “A proof is one or more proved facts which can give only one conclusion” (and here it in addition is possible to make at least two conclusions – that the creation was made by nature - - - and that far from everything come in pairs). A wrong claim, not a proof. (Claims are not proofs, and wrong claims definitely not.)
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This work was upload with assistance of M. A. Khan, editor of islam-watch.org and the author of "Islamic Jihad: A Legacy of Forced Conversion, Imperialism, and Slavery".