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FEBRUARY 2001

MONTHLY    *    Vol 15-02 No:170    *   FEBRUARY 2001 / ZIL-HIJJA 1421H
  email: editor@islamicvoice.com

Allah is the Lord of Two Easts and Two Wests
Key Elements in Creation of Man : Sperm, Dust and Water

Allah is the Lord of Two Easts and Two Wests

Question: It is mentioned in one verse of the Quran that Allah is the Lord of two Easts and two Wests. How can you explain this verse of the Quran scientifically?

Answer:

1. Quran mentions Allah is the Lord of two Easts and two Wests.

The verse of the Quran which refers to Allah being the Lord of two Easts and two Wests is the following verse from surah Ar-Rahman: “(He is) Lord of the two Easts and Lord of the two Wests:” [55:17]

In the original Arabic script, the words east and west have been used in the dual form. It implies that Allah is the Lord of two Easts and two Wests.

2. Allah is the Lord of both the extremes of East and West

The science of geography tells us that the sun rises from the east, but the point of sunrise keeps shifting throughout the year. Only on two days of the year known as ‘equinox’, does the sun rise exactly from due east. On the remaining days, it rises either from a little north or a little south of due east. During summer solstice the sun rises from one extreme of the east and during winter solstice it rises from the other extreme. Similarly, the sun sets in one extreme of the west in summer solstice. It sets in the other extreme of the west in winter solstice. This phenomenon can be easily seen in Mumbai or any other city, by people living in certain areas, or in tall buildings, from where the rising or setting of sun can be seen. They are able to notice that during the summer solstice the sun rises from one extreme of east and during winter solstice it rises from the other extreme of east. In short, through out the year, the sun keeps rising from different points of the east and sets on different points of the west. Thus when the Quran refers to Allah as the Lord of two Easts and two Wests, it means that Allah is the Lord of both the extremes of east and both the extremes of west.

3. Allah is the Lord of all the points of the East and West

Arabic language has two types of plurals. One is the dual plural i.e. the plural that implies the existence of two. The other is the plural for more than two, i.e. three and above. In surah Rahman verse 17 the Arabic words used are Mashriqain and Magribain which are in dual plural and therefore imply two Easts and two Wests.

Consider the following verse of the Quran: “Now I do call to witness the Lord of all points in the East and the West.” [70:40]

The Arabic words for east and west used in this verse are mashaariq and magharib which are plurals that imply the existence of more than two.

We can thus conclude that the Quran refers to Allah being the Lord of all the points in the east and all the points of the west, as well as the Lord of both the extreme points of east and both the extreme points of west.

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Key Elements in Creation of Man

Sperm, Dust and Water

Is Man Created from Sperm or Dust?

Question: At one place the Quran mentions that man is created from sperm and in another place it mentions that man is created from dust. Are these two verses not contradicting? How can you scientifically prove that man is created from dust?

Answer:

1. Man created from sperm and dust

The Quran refers to the lowly beginnings of a human being from a drop of sperm, in several verses including the following verse from surah Al-Qiyamah: “Was he not a drop of sperm emitted (in lowly form)”? [75:37]

The Quran also mentions in several places that human beings were created from dust. The following verse makes a reference to the origin of human beings: “(Consider) that We created you out of dust”. [22:5]

We now know that all the elements present in the human body (i.e. the constituent elements of the human body), are all present in the earth in small or great quantities. This is the scientific explanation for the Quranic verse that says that man was created from dust.

In certain verses, the Quran says that man was created from sperm, while in certain other verses it says that man was created from dust. However, this is not a contradiction. Contradiction means statements, which are opposite or conflicting and both cannot be true simultaneously.

2. Man created from water

In certain places the Quran also says that man was created from water. For instance in surah Al-Furqan it says: “It is He Who has created man from water”. [25:54] Science has proved all the three statements to be correct. Man has been created from sperm, dust as well as water.

3. It is not a Contradiction but a Contradistinction

Suppose, I say that in order to make a cup of tea one needs water. One also needs tea-leaves or tea powder. The two statements are not contradictory since both water and tea leaves are required in order to make a cup of tea. Furthermore, if I want sweet tea I can even add sugar.

Thus there is no contradiction in the Quran when it says that man is created from sperm, dust and water. It is not a contradiction but a contradistinction. Contradistinction means speaking about two different concepts on the same subject without conflict. For instance, if I say that the man is always truthful and a habitual liar, it is a contradiction, but if I say that a man is always honest, kind and loving, then it is a contradistinction.

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