Western thought today is in the midst of a raging battle between religion and science. It is almost impossible for a western thinker today to accept the fact that there may be a meeting ground between religion and science. The Bible, in which the Christians believe, states that the tree from which the Prophet Adam (peace be upon him) was forbidden to eat was the tree of knowledge. Thus, after he ate from it, he gained certain knowledge that he had not had before. For this reason,Europe spent two centuries arguing whether or not to accept scientific knowledge coming from Muslims.
The Church ruled that the pursuit of such scientific knowledge was the cause for the original sin. The bishops drew their evidence from the Old Testament, where it is mentioned that when Adam ate of the tree and gained some knowledge, Allahwas displeased with him and denied him mercy. Scientific knowledge was therefore rejected entirely by the Church as a taboo.
Finally, when the free thinkers and scientists of the West were able to overcome the power of the Church, they took revenge by going in the opposite direction and suppressing any power of the religion. They went to all possible extremes in order to overcome the power of the Church and reduce its influenceinto a narrow and a confined corner.
Therefore, if you discuss the issue of religion and science with a westerner, he readily goes into sheer wonderment. They do not know Islam. They do not know that Islam accords a very high status to knowledge and men of knowledge, regarding them as witnesses, after the angels, to the fact that there is no god worthy of worship in truth but Allah, as AllahHimself has told us in the Qur'aan:
Among those who were taken by surprise is Dr. Joe Leigh Simpson, Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Professor of Molecular and Human Genetics at the Baylor College of Medicine, Houston. When we first met him, Professor Simpson insisted on verifying the Qur'aan and the Sunnah. We were able, however, to remove his suspicion. We presented to him the text outlining the development of the embryo. We proved to him that the Qur'aan informs us that the hereditary and the chromosomal make-up of the new being take place only after a successful union between the sperm and the ovum. As we know, these chromosomes contain all the characteristics which the new human being will have such as the color of the eyes, skin, hair, etc.
Hence, many of the details in the human beings make-up are determined in his chromosomes. These chromosomes begin to form during the early nutfah stage ofembryonic development. In other words, the distinguishing features of the new human being are determined from the very beginning at the nutfah stage. Allah, the Most Exalted, the Most Glorified, has stated this fact in the Qur'aan:
Professor Simpson studied these two hadeeths extensively, noting that the first 40 days constitute a clearly distinguishable stage of embryo genesis. He was particularly impressed by the absolute precision and accuracy of those hadeeths. Then during one of the conferences which he attended he gave the following opinion: "So that the two hadeeths that have been noted can provide us with a specific time table for the main embryological development before 40 days. Again, the point had been made repeatedly by other speakers this morning that these hadeeths could not have been obtained on the basis of the scientific knowledge that was available at the time of their recording."
Professor Simpson says that religion can successfully guide the pursuit of knowledge. The West, as we said, has rejected this. Here is an American scientist who says that religion, namely Islam, can achieve this with success. By analogy, if you go to a factory and have with you the operation manual of the factory, then you will be able to easily understand the kind of operation that goes on in that factory, thanks to that manual by the factory designer and builder. If you do not have this manual with you, chances are much less that you will have good understanding of the various processes there.
Professor Simpson said: "It follows, I think, that not only is there no conflict between genetics and religion, but in fact religion can guide science by adding revelation to some traditional scientific approaches. That there exist statements in the Qur'aan shown by science to be valid, which supports knowledge in the Qur'aan having been derived from Allah."
This is true. Certainly, the Muslims can lead the way in the pursuit of knowledge and that they can accord knowledge in its proper status. Moreover, Muslims know how to use knowledge as a proof of the existence of Allah, May Allah be Exalted and Glorified, and to affirm the Messenger ship of Muhammad (peace be upon him).
Allah said in the Qur'aan:
- Could it be a coincidence that all this recently discovered scientific informationfrom different fields was mentioned in the Qur'aan which was revealed 14 centuries ago?
- Could this Qur'aan have been authored by Muhammad (peace be upon him) or by any other human being?
Moreover, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) reviewed the Qur'aan with the Angel Jibreel once every Ramadhan (the month of fasting) and twice in the last year of his life in the same Islamic calendar. Since the Qur'aan was revealed, up until today, there has always been a huge number of Muslims who have memorized all of the Qur'aan, letter by letter. Some of them have been able to memorize all of the Qur'aan by the age of ten. Thus, it is not surprising to note that not one letter of the Qur'aan has been changed for centuries up to now.
The Qur'aan which was revealed 14 centuries ago mentioned facts that are only recently discovered by proven scientists. This proves without doubt that the Qur'aan must be the literal word of Allah, revealed by Him to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and it also proves that Muhammad (peace be upon him) is truly a Messenger and Prophet sent byAllah. It is beyond reason that anyone fourteen hundred years ago would have known these facts discovered or proven very recently with advanced equipment and sophisticated methods.