The Qurans’ consistency with contemporary science

Consistency of the Quran with science

Science is ever-changing, the Quran is not

The Qurans’ consistency with contemporary science is a source of inspiration to its followers. Much information in the Quran shows a surprising consistency with currently held scientific ideas. Yet, it is vital to realize that science is ever-evolving and constantly changing. While God’s description is a complete and final understanding of a matter, scientific knowledge is a developing phenomenon.

Science may not reflect the entire truth and the ultimate facts at a particular time. The resulting discrepancies can potentially create an enigma for the readers, who want to justify the scripture solely through their understanding of science. We need to be open to these considerations when considering quranic verses indicating consistency with current scientific information.

The Qurans’ consistency with contemporary science, A need for caution

There has been a trend among some Muslims to read hidden scientific meanings with everything they read in the Quran. The Qurans’ consistency with science may not be proven with this approach, as science can change anytime with a new idea, hypothesis, and invention, which may not be compliant with the Quranic interpretation. Readers of the Quran need to pay attention to that.

The book of signs

The Quran is a sacred communication from the Divine to humans. It is not a book of science. Delivering scientific knowledge is not its primary concern. It is a book that reveals God’s guidance to humans regarding how to live a just, peaceful, and meaningful life.

Humans, as the Quran asserts, are God’s representatives to the earth. The Quran describes various phenomena of the universe as testaments of the creative marvels of the Creator. While narrating those natural phenomena, the Quran always encourages its readers to pursue critical thinking about the cause of their existence and the universe.


The Quran begins with a powerful invitation to humans, “Read!” After two short verses, it alludes to the pen as the means to disseminate knowledge. The subsequent Quranic narrative attests that the human learning process is a divinely gifted enterprise of life.

The Quran relentlessly emphasizes humans to observe, think, reason, and comprehend the world around them. These are the qualities required to excel in understanding the universe and are the basis of human scientific advancement. Practicing observation and reasoning, as the Quran asserts, will lead a person to believe in God.

science can change over time with new inventions and new ideas. The Quran does not change.

Does God’s existence need scientific verification?

The vastness of our universe, which has a diameter of 93 billion light-years span, makes us realize the sheer abundance of existence that is out there, which are unknowable, unthinkable, and beyond the human reach, even in their wildest dream.

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Is it not a naivety to expect that the Creator of this incalculably vast universe (possibly multiverse and beyond) can be understood in any completeness, or calculated with the quotable numbers, or measured by human measuring abilities? How can someone reasonably think that they can attach a definition and a concrete scientific name tag to God? That is what many want to be able to do before they accept a creator’s existence, and that is just silly!

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Role of reasoning in believing God

The Quran asserts that the belief in God is an intellectual venture rather than that of blind faith. In the human spiritual journey, reasoning is an essential tool, as the Quran argues. The Quranic narratives rationalize the existence of God. Humans cannot observe God physically, yet they can experience His presence through His signs embedded in the universe. That is the foundational concept preached in the Quran.

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 The Quran's consistency with science may vary with time, as science can change over time with new inventions and new ideas

The Quran is allusive

It is important to realize that the Quranic accounts of natural phenomena consistent with current scientific facts are allusive. The Quran is religious scripture, while science is a product of human observation. Consequently, the Quran’s descriptive pattern is not like a modern-day scientific publication presenting data. The Quran does not use current scientific terminologies, as there were probably none at the time of its revelation. It uses metaphors fitting to the time to describe the concepts unknown at the time. With metaphor and metonymy, the Quran presents its ideas to people of different times with varying scientific understanding levels.

 The Quran's consistency with science may vary with time, as science can change over time with new inventions and new ideas

God’s signs are within us

To put it another way, God, the source of all knowledge, is the narrator in the Quran and the humans are the readers. As can be seen in the Quran, God warns humans about some of the Quranic verses’ metaphorical nature. To emphasize those verses, the Quran named them as the “Mutashabiha,” meaning “the definite meaning is unknown.” The Quran discourages attempts to dig deep and to try to find the meanings of these verses. Attempts to decipher the intents of the Mutashabiha verses may be misleading for the readers. The intellectual and cultural development in a particular generation may not be adequate to understand God’s all narrations. The Quran supports this notion in verse 3:7.

The Qurans consistency with science

The “Mutashabiha” verses

As can be seen, the Quran does not identify which ones are the Mutashabiha verses. The earliest commentators and scholars believed that the verses describing the life after death, the resurrection of human beings on the Day of Judgement, the allegorical description of heaven and hell, and the verses describing phenomena beyond human understanding belong to the category of Mutashabiha.

It is plausible that Allah intended some of the Quranic verses for future readers with evolved scientific knowledge and understanding. Thus the Quran leaves an opening for interpretation to the future generations adding a new dimension to this ancient scripture. Indeed this is in line with Muslims’ belief that God has sent the Quran to humanity for all time.

Allah knows the best.

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