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THE QURAN AND SCIENCE

Universe in Quran

The word "science" here stands for all branches of knowledge without particularising any of them. It includes studies connected with the universe and its allied subjects under which fall the modern sciences such as biology, chemistry, physics, astronomy and geology. The Holy Quran, undoubtedly, raises the prestige of these sciences and encourages people to study them for the general good. The most sublime reference in this respect and the most important fact in this connection is that the very first verses of the Holy Quran gave incentive to gain knowledge and to glorify it. The beginning of the Revelation was actually a signal for the dawn of know -ledge and a forerunner of giving it its due dignity. The very first verse of the Holy Book reads "Read in the name of thy Lord Who created, created man from a clot, Read and thy Lord is most Generous, Who taught by the pen, taught man what he knew not." (surat AI-Alaq: The Clot).

The Holy Quran explains later at different stages of the Revelation the meaning of science and education. which includes, on a large scale, all sciences connected with the universe, matter, energy, systems and life. These are the sciences by which Man gains in power and strength and faith and fear of God which is the Chief objective of life. Refer for example to the following verses: "Those of His servants only who are possessed of knowledge fear Allah. Surely, Allah is Mighty, Forgiving." (Surat Fatir: The Originator). "Surely in the heavens and the earth are signs for believers." (Surat Al-Jathiya : The Kneeling). "And in the earth are signs for those who are sure. (Surat Al-Zariyat : The Scatterers). "And He it is Who has made the stars for you that you might follow the right way thereby in the darkness of the land and the sea. Indeed We have made plain the signs for a people who know." (Surat Al-Anaam: The Cattle) "And of His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth and the diversity of your tongues and colours. Surely there are signs in this for the learned." (Surat Al-Rum: The Romans).

"Seest thou not that Allah sends down water from the clouds, then We bring forth therewith fruits of various hues? And in the mountains are streaks, white and red, of various hues and (others) intensely black. And of men and beasts and cattle there are various colours likewise." (Surat Fatir : The Originator). "Say: Are those who know and those who know not alike?" (Surat Al-Zumar: The Companies). This is apart from a number of other verses which not only speak highly of sciences and scientists, but draw our attention and direct us to pursue knowledge and discover the secrets of the universe on the line of the present divisions of modern sciences as we have already explained.

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