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The Creation of the Heavens and the Earth
Man's knowledge of the origin of the universe is very limited. Scientists have proposed hypotheses and theories of evolution centered around one theme: the primordial fireball and the primordial era of matter and antimatter. According to these theories, the universe consisted mainly of strongly interacting particles. The primordial matter and antimatter eventually annihilated each other and those particles that survived formed the present universe. This theory is given further credence because it conforms to the basic process of the development of the universe as presented very simply in the Qur'an. Allah commands His Messenger Muhammad, peace be on him, to ask the unbelievers:� Say (to them): Do you disbelieve in Him Who created the earth in two days? And yet you set up equals to Him, Who is the Rubb of the worlds. And He placed therein firm mountains above its (the earth's) surface and blessed it, and in four days equitably apportioned the means of subsistence to all who would seek it. Then (Allah) turned to the heaven when it was smoke (yet only gaseous) and said to it and to the earth: Submit willingly or unwillingly! They both said: We submit in willing obedience. Then He decreed that they become seven heavens in two days, and imparted to each (of the seven) its function. And We decorated the heaven nearest to earth with lights and made them secure. Such is the decree of the All Mighty, the All-knowing.�
And Allah says:� Are the unbelievers not aware that the heavens and the earth were once a single entity which We then separated, and that We made every living thing out of water? Will they not then (begin to) believe?�
The concept of rending one unit into two or more, and the celestial "smoke" referred to in the above, confirms what is considered to be factual scientific data. The English physicist and astronomer, Sir James Jeans, wrote: "We have found that, as Newton first conjectured, a chaotic mass of gas of approximately uniform density and of very great extent would be dynamically unstable: nuclei would tend to form in it, around which the whole of matter would ultimately condense." On the basis of this theory he proposed that all celestial objects originated by a process of fragmentation.
The space program helped verify the homogeneity of the substances of which the moon, the earth, and other planets are formed. "Such statements in the Qur'an concerning the creation, which appeared nearly fourteen centuries ago" Dr. Bucaille concluded, "obviously do not lend themselves to a human explanation.".
Macropaedia, Vol.18, p.1008, of the Encyclopedia Britannica.
Some have misconstrued this verse to substantiate Darwin's theory of evolution. This verse means that Allah chose to develop the universe to its present state by causing water to constitute the substantial element of every living thing.