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Qur'an and Sunnah

Literalism · Miracles · Science · Women

Views on the Qur'an

Shi'a · Criticism · Desecration · Surah of Wilaya and Nurayn · Tanazzulat · Qisas Al-Anbiya · Beit Al Qur'an

Muslims consider the Qur'an, the holy book of Islam, as the word of God and a miracle.[1] The Qur'an claims that it has been created miraculously as a revelation from Allah (God), as a perfect copy of what was written in heaven and existed there from all eternity.[2] Therefore, the verses of the book are referred to as ayat, which also means "a miracle" in the Arabic language.[3] It is believed that the Qur'an as we know it today, is the same as was revealed to Muhammad in the year 610.[4] The Qur'an itself gives an open challenge for anyone who denies its claimed divine origin to produce a text like it. [Qur'an 17:88][11:12–13][2:23][5]

Critics believe that Muhammad was influenced by older Jewish and Christian traditions, and therefore included many of the wonders known from the Bible in the Qur'an.[6] On the other hand, the Qur'an states that Muhammed was illiterate and neither read a book nor wrote a book [Qur'an 29:48] and that he did not know about past events. [Qur'an 3:44][11:49][28:44][7]

The miracles in the Qur’an can be classified into three distinct categories: inimitability, scientific miracles and prophecies.

Inimitability of the Qur'an

Inimitability is the theological and literary term for the matchless nature of the Qur'anic discource.[8] Muslims believe that the insuperable literary style of the Qur'an is the main proof of its divine origin, claiming that the Qur'an is written in a perfect, inimitable style that cannot be matched by human endeavor.[9]

Some support exists for the belief that Qur'anic speech was unique among the linguistic productions of seventh-century Arabs; Ibn Ishaq tells his fellow opponents that "... his speech is sweet, his root is a palm tree whose branches are fruitful, and everything you have said [in criticisms of the Prophet's recitations] would be known to be false".

Muslims believe that the speech in the Qur'an is like a rhymed pattern, which is characterized by the assonance at the end of the verses.[8]

Scientific miracles

The belief that Qur'an had prophesied scientific theories and discoveries has become a strong and widespread belief in the contemporary Islamic world; these prophecies are often provided as a proof of the divine origin of the Qur'an.[10] The scientific facts claimed to be in the Qur'an exist in different subjects, including creation, astronomy, the animal and vegetables kingdom, and human reproduction.

"a time is fixed for every prophecy; you will come to know in time" ([Qur'an 6:67]). Islamic scholar Zaghloul El-Naggar thinks that this verse refers to the scientific facts in the Qur'an that would be discovered by the world in modern time, centuries after the revelation.[10]

This belief is, however, arguable in the Muslim world. While some believe and support it, other Muslim scholars oppose the belief, claiming that the Qur'an is not a book of science; al-Biruni, one of the most celebrated Muslim scientists of the classical period, assigned to the Qur'an a separate and autonomous realm of its own and held that the Qur'an "does not interfere in the business of science nor does it infringe on the realm of science."[10] These scholars argued for the possibility of multiple scientific explanation of the natural phenomena, and refused to subordinate the Qur'an to an ever-changing science.[10]


Islamic studies claim that the Qur'an mentions events which were yet to come (at the time of its creation). These studies argue that such prophecies show another proof of the divine origin of Qur'an. For example, some Islamic scholars claim that the Qur'an had predicted the eventual defeat of the Persians by the Romans in the 620s.[11] Syed Abul Aala Maududi claims that this prophecy (30:1-4) revealed in 615 AD, and within 6 to 7 years Romans started overpowering the Persians.[12]


  1. F. Tuncer, "International Conferences on Islam in the Contemporary World", March 4–5, 2006, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, U.S.A., p. 95–96
  2. Wilson, Christy: "The Qur'an" in A Lion Handbook The World's Religion, p. 315
  3. Wilson, ibid.
  4. F. E. Peters (1991), pp.3–5
  5. Gril, Denis. "Miracles" Encyclopaedia of the Quran.
  6. Wilson, p. 316
  7. F. Tuncer, ibid.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Encyclopaedia of the Qur-an — Inimitability
  9. Encyclopaedia of the Qur-an — Miracles
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 Ahmad Dallal, Encyclopedia of the Qur'an, Quran and science
  11. Encyclopaedia of the Qur-an — Byzantines
  12. Tafheem-ul-Quran Volume 3, Introduction to Sura Room (Rome)ie Chapter#30 and the explanation of the first four verses


See also