The purpose with this blog is to expose the claim of modern Islamic apologists that the Qur'an is miracolous in its prediction of what they claim resembles modern science.

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Are included Contemporary Sources Problematic for the Qur'an?

A good question relating the previous thread was asked me on the Answering-Muslim blog, I think it is worth mentioning here:

Fifth Monarchy Man said...
Hey Hogan,

Do Muslims generally have a problem with ideas found in the Quran existing in contemporary sources?

I ask this because as a Christian I have no problem with Jude’s use of non canonical information in his letter.

Just curious

Hogan's reply:

Monarch man,

I agree with you. I am honestly not to sure about how problematic this is.

In fact in this thread, my main intent was to refute those who maintain that this idea was never known of prior to Islam which therefore renders the Qur'an as miracolous. I guess by know it should be obvious that Bucaille, Harun Yahay, Osama Abdallah have simply failed to do their homework or are willingly lying to and deceiving their readers.

Personally I have no problem with holy books utilizing its contemporary terms and language, the Bible does that. Otherwise the contemporary reader or listeners would be unable to perceive the message. That would especially go for OT or NT books which are not revelations but rather inspirations.

However, in this case of the Qur'an, in which the author is utilizing an ancient scientific idea it extends far beyond that.

If the Qur'an simply used these terms to signify cosmogony, I would have no problem with that. However, since the Qur'an refers specifically to the view of the unbelievers and connecting these terms to them, it appears that the Qur'an views cosmogony as an actual separation of the literal heaven and earth from an entity that priorly consisted of these; that is certainly a Qur'anic difficulty.

The second problem concerns those who view the passage as miracolous, since it predicts modern science. Firstly, the passage does not predict modern science, since in modern science the heaven and earth never separate, rather within modern science the earth evolves through accreation within an expanding universe. Furthermore, if the 'separation of heaven and earth' is described prior to Islam, then the idea does not promote the miracolous nature of the Qur'an.

I guess some might also suggest that since the Qur'an is a divine book existing in heaven, completely devoid of human or created interferance, why is the Qur'an then containing and depending on so many ideas that have human origin and that even wrongly postulate cosmological and earthly science. I realise that the Muslim might say that the revelation of God in e.g. Isaiah also contains terms that were perceived by its contemporaries in their scientific understanding, but then again, we do not claim that the book of Isaiah was contained in heaven but rather that the revelations to Isaiah were given to his contemporaries. Furthermore, the science of Isaiah much like elsewhere in the OT is metaphorical, there is no indication that the e.g. the heaven or the earth actually have pillars, while the separation of the heaven and earth in the Qur'an is referred to as an actual occurance.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

The Qur'an and the Big Bang Theory in Comparison to Ancient Philosophy and Religion.

This post includes an essay on the Qur'an and Cosmogony with a focus on the Big Bang theory, which I wrote five years ago. The purpose was obviously to debunk the various exponents of Islam (e.g. Bucaille, Harun Yahya and Osama Abdallah) who propagate their wishful imagination to what they deem as scientific evidence for the Qur'an.
Since then I have greatly expanded my insight into the matter and am currently preparing a more detailed work, which I may post in small parts or in a lengthy essay in near future.
Notice that my intention here is not to debunk the improbability of the Qur'anic view (that will derive in a later post) but to point out that the Qur'anic picture of the cosmological origin was a view that flourished centuries prior to the rise of Islam, and which the authors and composers of the Qur'an appear to have borrowed from circulating teaching or sources, sometimes (possibly) even word for word.
To assess the cosmology of the Qur’an our study has to begin with its concept of cosmogony, the origins. Here Muslims usually refer to Sura 21: 30:

Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were of one piece, then We parted them, and we made every living thing of water? Will they not then believe? (Sura 21: 30)’

The joining and separation of the heavens and earth is according to a range of Muslim writers a predication of the modern the Big Bang theory; Bucaille, expounds upon this:

The reference to a separation process (fatq) of a primary single mass whose elements were initially fused together (ratq). It must be noted that in Arabic ‘fatq’ is the action of breaking, diffusing, separating, and that ‘ratq’ is the action of fusing or binding together elements to a make a homogenous whole.’ (1)

Yet the text itself does not follow Bucaille’s line of thought! The phrase: ‘Have not those who disbelieve known…’ implies that the Qur’an describes and refers to a concept that was already familiar in the era prior to Islam (2); hence in all correctness we may need to leave out any notion of modern scientific discoveries, and consider what ancient science and belief had already concluded.

Cosmogony in Ancient Religions:

A range of ancient religions e.g. the Hermopolitan (3) appear to describe the origin of the universe as a primordial universal egg. In the Hindu writings, the Laws of Manu, creation begins with a seed placed in water. The seed grows into a golden egg, which divides into two halves, which initially forms into heaven and earth. (4) In the Upanishads, existence suddenly begins, gradually grows into an egg and when the egg has laid still for a year, it is split open, out of which the two parts appear, which initially became the heaven and the earth. (5)
The resemblance is obvious; yet interestingly, the Laws of Manu and the Upanishads provide a description which is much closer to modern science than the Qur’an; as both describe a chronology which includes the state from singularity to inflation. (6)
Following the thought of Bucaille therefore, the Qur’anic cosmogony depends upon an external and much more detailed theory, which reveals further scientific predictions; this does not render the Qur’an as necessarily being miraculous.
The ancient Mesopotamian and Babylonian writings contain the same concept, as is the case with Gilgamesh: ‘…when the heavens had been separated from the earth and the earth had been delimited from the heavens.’ (7)
Furthermore, the Emma Elish, describes the god Marduk creating the heaven and earth by separating the women Tiamat in two halves, which become the vault of the sky and the earth; next he fixes the courses of the stars in the sky. (8)

Cosmogony in Ancient Philosophy:

Yet the concept of one primary entity separating was not confined to the world of mythology only; the Greeks and the Romans speculated in the same lines but transferred the concept to the category of science. Aristotle (384-322 BC) in describing the proposition of Anaxagoras (500-428 BC), writes:
That is why they make statements like ‘everything was originally mixed together…others talk in this context of combination and separation…So the reason they say that everything is mixed in everything is because, in their view, everything comes from everything. (9)

This is certainly in line with Bucaille and Haruna, who applied the terminology of mixing and fusing and then separating. (10) If the earth was not presented in the original entity, the Qur’an might have been closely in line with Anaxagoras; yet the separation of the earth does not indicate that, or else the passage would render a clear description of a mere entity exclusive of its reference to heaven and earth.
Hence in the Qur’an it is not a cosmological globe that separates but the heaven and earth.
The plausibility is also that the reference to the heavens while still smoke in Sura 41: implies that the earth originated from the same material. Yet nothing in the passage explicitly reveals so; furthermore we would assume then, that the earth would distance itself from the smoke, yet the earth and smoke are brought to together, leaving us with no explanation for its occurrence.
In addition to a fused universe Anaxagoras and the Greeks also considered this mixing of the universe to occur in one place, as one entity before they separated.
Interestingly, Anaxagoras refers to the mixture as being comprehended by air and an element called aether.’ (11) Aether, was the mysterious matter of the universe, often referred to as fire or fiery fume (12); whether this can be interpreted into terminology such as gas or primordial gaseous clouds, (13) if we really wish to speculate, is probably overstating the matter, at least when considering the thought of Anaxagoras. (14)
Interestingly however, according to Zeller, various ancient philosophers considered this element, usually fire and air to be mixed inside a fiery universal glob. The globe exploded and the fire collected in fiery circles from which the stellar bodies derived. (15) According to Anaxagoras the earth was implausible at this stage, rather the separation occurs from rotation in which all matter gets included starts forming and are brought into orbit. (16) Compared to modern science, the analogy is still distant but yet surprisingly accurate. (17)
Yet, the most significant philosopher when it concerns the cosmology of the Qur’an and its use of ancient science is Lucretius. (18) His postulate involves the mixture and separation of the universe, but also in details describes a theory in which the role and contribution of the atoms is separating the heaven and earth and so expanding the cosmos.
As to the Big Bang, Lucretius describes a time in which nothing existed except for a congregated mass of atoms, compressed into one small entity:

‘At that time the sun’s bright disc was not to be seen here, soaring loft and lavishing light, nor the stars that crowd the far-flung firmament, nor sea nor sky, nor earth, nor air nor anything in the likeness of things we know – nothing but a hurricane raging in a newly congregated mass of atoms of every sort.’ (19)

Lucretius further describes a state of chaos and turmoil in which the atoms collide:
From their disharmony sprang conflict, which maintained a turmoil in their interspaces, courses, unions, thrusts, impacts, collisions and motions.’ (20)

It is vital to consider that Lucretius envisages this early state of the universe to be a ‘newly congregated mass of atoms of every sort’; in other words a previous cause must have brought this congregated mass into its shape and function. Yet at this point the universe is still a congregated mass which contains the entire universe, the earth, the heaven, the stars, the sun and the moon, and possibly its space.

The next stage of the universe is the combination of atoms with other atoms which causes what Lucretius calls the ‘main features of a world’ to be composed. This might explain why the Qur’an refers to the heaven and earth rather than a cosmological globe. According to Lucretius, it is from this primordial state, that the separation of heaven and the earth and the expansion of the space between them take place:

‘…they (the atoms) began, in fact, to separate the heights of heaven from the earth, to single out the sea as a receptacle for water detached from the mass and to set apart the fires of pure and isolated ether. In the first place all the particles of earth, because they were heavy and intertangled, collected in the middle and took up the undermost stations. The more closely they cohered and clung together, the more they squeezed out the atoms that went to the making of sea and stars, sun and moon and the outer walls of the great world.’ (21)

Lucretius therefore describes the separation of heaven and earth as being caused by the composition of the primordial universe; particularly by the atoms.

The similarities between these sources and the Qur’an are significant; yet the Qur’an provides little insight into to the state of this primordial entity and the cause of separation.
Later commentators e.g. Kathir suggests the air between the heaven and earth was the cause, (22) while Mujahid suggests that the heaven began as smoke gusting out of the earth. (13) If is the case, then the Qur’an does not follow in line with Anaxagoras’ exclusion of the primordial earth. Following Mujahid however, and the reference to the earth and smoke (Sura 41: 11), the Qur’an certainly follows a range of philosophers on the centrality of the earth and its contribution to the cosmological structure. In addition the reference to smoke also suggests that the Qur’an is depending upon the earlier Greek theories of the elements, rather than the atomic theory of Lucretius. (24)


Bibliography and sources:

1. Bucaille, 1975: 139; see also Harun Yahya, The Scientific Miracles of the Qur’an, Al-Attique Publishers, 2000:21-2. Yahya elaborates on Bucaille’s theory by suggesting that the verb fataqa implies the destruction or tearing apart of something to create something new. See also Muhammad Assadi, The Unifying theory of everything: Koran and Nature’s Testimony (

2. Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged Vol. 6, Abridged by a group of Scholars under the supervision of Shaykh Safiur-Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri, Riyadh, Houston, New York, Lahore, Darussalam, 2000: 440.

3. The Hermopolitan cosmogony is depicted in several versions, one being a cosmological egg which was placed on the Primeval Hill by a goose from which Re appeared; see Mircea Eliade, A History of Religious Ideas: From the Stone Age to the Eleusinian Mysteries, vol.1, St James’s Place, London: Collins, 1979:17-8)

4. G. Buhler (translation), Sacred Books of the East, XXV: 'The Laws of Manu,' 1, 5-16 (Oxford 1886), pp.2-8

5. S. Radhakrishnan (editor and translator), The Principal Upanishads: Chandogya Upanishad, III, 19, 1-2, New York: Harper & Row, 1953, PP. 151-2, 399, 447-9 (
See also Dr. E. Zeller, A History of Greek Philosophy: From the earliest Period to the Time of Socrates, Vol. I, London: Longmans Green and Co, 1881: 115; the Greek myth in which Chronos-Heraclis produces a giant egg which is divided, from which the heaven and earth originate.

6. Alan H. Guth & Paul J. Steinhardt, ‘The Inflationary Universe’ in (ed.) David H. Levy, The Scientific ‘American: Book of Cosmos’, London, Oxford and Basingstoke: Macmillan, 2000:361-62; the theory implies that the universe in a brief period of suddenly by some ‘extraordinary’ cause expanded, while the entire universe in its pre-inflationary state had been compressed into to a tiny volume.

7. Gilgamesh, Enkidu and the netherworld: 1-26 (Version A, From Nibru, Urim and elsewhere) in Babylonia and Ancient Near Eastern Texts, by Kenneth Sublett,, Hohenwald, Tennessee; the text describes a multiple number of heavens and excludes the usual mythology (

8. Mircea Eliade, AHistory of Religious Ideas: From the Stone Age to the Eleusinian Mysteries, vol.1, St James’s Place, London: Collins, 1979:71-2

9. Aristotle: Physics, A New Translation by Robin Waterfield, Oxford: University Press, 1999:17

10. see Sura 21: 30; the theory of Bucailleism implies that the passage predicts fusing and separation

11. Arthur Fairbanks, ed. and trans. The First Philosophers of Greece, London: K. Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1898: 235 (Hanover Historical Text Projects)

12. See Aristotle, he applies the same terminology to a mysterious cloudy material, such as vapour and ether, similar to the Qur’ans reference of dukhan, which Muslim authors claim predicts primordial gasseous clouds (Aristotle, Aristotle Meteorologica, I. iii, translated by H.D.P. Lee, London: William Heinemann, Ltd & Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1962: 19-23, 31.

13. Fred Adams & Greg Laughlin, The Five Ages of the Universe: Inside the Physics of Eternity, USA, New York: The Free Press, 1999: 34-40; the entire galactic host of the Universe was originally composed and formed in clouds of hot gas.

14. This resembles the claim that the Qur’anic reference to dukhan is a prediction of the primordial gaseous clouds; the main problem however remains that the gaseous clouds did not derive from a central earth, but the other way round.

15. Zellar, 1881: 267; this was the view of Anaxagoras, but other philosophers, such as Plutarch and Hippolytus held the same view. Anaximander, however, applied this concept upon the earth and the heaven; he envisaged the sun, moon, stars and their circles to have originated from a fiery sphere that split from the earth; see Arthur Fairbanks, Plut. Strom. 2 ; Dox. 579, 1898: 14, 16

16. Arthur Fairbanks, 1898:241

17. Adams and Laughlin, 1999:35; the theory proposes matter that was pulled together into galactic structured by gravity, and then endowed with rotation.

18. Lucretius, The Nature of the Universe, (translated by R.E. Latham), Penguin Books 1957, ‘The Nature of the
Universe’ was written 50 BC, slightly nearer the ear of Islam, and reveals a cosmogony that has been significantly developed since Anaxagoras and Aristotle, as ancient postulates and the atomic theory are combined. See also 184-5; while earlier cosmogonies typically described the world being created from the elements; Lucretius rejects this view and combines the atomism concept with the concept of separation.

19. Lucretius, 1957: 184; Here Lucretius alludes slightly to Anaxagoras who proposed the inauguration of a small rotating motion, while Lucretius describes an atomic mass effected by a raging hurricane; considering modern science, this ancient postulate is remarkable. Furthermore Lucretius predicts an original fused entity. Comparing the picture to modern theories the picture does not resemble cosmological singularity but apart from earths existence, rather the later proposed cloud of radiation, from which the atoms and particles suddenly exonerated. See also Heather Couper & Nigel Henbest, To the ends of the Universe, UK, London: Dorling Kindersley, 1998: 24-7). The Qur’an makes no reference to the nature of this entity, such as Lucretius; yet the principle remains the same, this entity is combined by heaven and earth.

20. Lucretius, 1957: 184; According to modern scientific postulates this closely resembles the interval period between the Big Bang and the Cosmological Inflation; Couper & Henbest, 1998; 20-3: see also Carl Sagan, Cosmos, UK, London: Book Club Associates, 1981: 218-235, despite from the fact that the earth was not present at that stage of the universe.

21. Lucretius, 1957: 184-5; this is where the Qur’an comes in having excluded all the details; hence the reference of Sura 21: 30 refers to a already detailed description of cosmogony. Here it have to be noted however, that Lucretius’ postulate is only an option among many

22. Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged Volume 6, Abridged by a group of Scholars under the supervision of Shaykh Safiur-Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri, Riyadh, Houston, New York, Lahore, Darussalam, 2000: 440-1

23. Mujahid commented on Allah’s statement 41: 9-12 which reveals the earth to be created and made inhabitable prior to the forming and rising of the heavens (compare to 21: 30-2). Based on Sura 41 Mujahid states that the earth was created first: ‘...and when He created the earth, smoke burst out of it.’ According to Mujahid this is why Allah turned to the heaven ‘when it was smoke’ Sura 41: 11’ Tafsir Ibn Kathir, vol.1, 2000: 180

24. Most Greeks held on to the a universe consisting of the basic elements, Democritus (470-380 BC) Epicurus (341-270 BC) and later Lucretius (95-55 BC) held on to the atomic universe; they rejected the significance of the elements; yet this theory remained a minority view and almost vanished until early fourteen century, when it became superior; see Isaac Asimov, Exploring the Earth and the Cosmos, UK, Middlesex: Penguin Books Ltd: 1982: 265-8 93. See also Lucretius who stated that the elements are depended upon the atoms, and mocked those who believed the raw material to be air, water or fire (Lucretius, 1957: 47, 93)

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

The 'Ant' in the Bible and the Qur'an: A Dialogue Between Hogan Elijah Hagbard and Ayaz

This thread includes an email dialogue between Ayaz and myself. Ayaz and myself engaged in public debate some years ago about the Bible and the Qur’an. We are currently contemplating an imminent debate God willing in the month of October this year

While we have discussed the arrangements I began to ask him about Sura 27: 18-19, challenging Ayaz to explain the capability of an ordinary ant to perceive the person, name and position of king Solomon. This thread contains our dialogue up to this point.

I have asked Ayaz for his permission to post our dialogue here, and hopefully our dialogue can proceed on this thread and blog.

Date: Tue, 6 Jul 2010 16:37

Hogan wrote:

One question, how do you explain the speaking ant in the Qur'an? How did it recognise Solomon? If an ant possess insight into human affairs does this mean that the fly on the wall votes Labour or Conservative?

I wrote two small articles about this on the and my own blog on the Qur'an and science:
Unfortunately, Muslims have not been to keen to respond, I fully understand that!

Keep in mind, I am not saying that God cannot make an ant talk or provide the ability to a prophet to understand the communication of an ant, yet what puzzles me here is the idea that a simply ant perceives human affairs and human politic, such as a specific royalty.

Date: Tue, 6 July, 2010 17:28

Ayaz wrote:

Do you belive in MIRACLES?or do ure MIRACLES have to be based on scientific proof?

Date: Tue, 6 Jul 2010 18:06

Hogan wrote:

I think you misunderstand my point here! I don't see how an ant perceiving the King Solomon is based upon a miracle. If Solomon with miraculous ears indeed understood the ant, yeah that would constitute a miracle, but nothing suggests that the ant perceiving Solomon and his royalty was a miracle. Either the ant was divinely inspired (a prophet ant) or the story is a fairytale.

Date: Tue, 6 July, 2010 18:11

Ayaz wrote:

Do you think ants communicate with eachother as Sura Namel istigates?

Date: Tue, 6 Jul 2010 18:53

Hogan replies:

We know today that ants do communicate with smell and even with sounds. However, if you think of the Qur'anic view in which an ant talks, this was an idea that existed prior to Islam.

For example it is recorded in the writings of the third century Church Father Origen (among others), in his quotation of Celsus that ants communicated effectively and in great details by language.

Scientists realise that some ants may communicate by sound, but not a language. However, if the Qur'anic assumption is accurate it only presents data that existed prior to Islam.

However, my question related to a very different matter. I asked how an ordinary ant possessed the ability to perceive a specific human person, both his name and status? What do you have to say about that?

Date: Wed, 7 July, 2010 13:18

Ayaz wrote:

Hi Hogan, it seems you have mis understood the Quranic verse of Sura Namel. I will try to explain the words that the ant uttered in the Holy Quran and try connect that with the new scientific discoveries made.

At length, when they came to a (lowly) valley of ants,one of the ants said: ''O ye ants,get into your habitations,lest Solomon and his hosts break you(under foot without knowing it)''.
Quran 27:18

The ANT reported the imminent danger facing them through four succesive stages as follows :
(1) O ye ants - This is the first alarm given by the ant to draw the attention of the other ants quickly. On recieving this alarm signal the other ants stand alert to recieve the other signals that the same speaker ant will give.
(2) Get into your habitations - Here the speaker ant follows HER words up with another signal, ordering the ants to do what they ought to do.
(3)Lest Solomon and his hosts break you - In these words the speaker ant shows reasons for this danger to her fellow ants.
(4)Without knowing it - The ants, as a reaction to the previous signals, will make a certain kind of defence, the ant shows her fellow ants that they do not need to attack the source of danger, because the source of danger is not from a real enemy.

Lets see what science has just discovered.

Four stages of Danger

Origen never mentioned the FOUR STAGES, he only said ANTS COMMUNICATE. WOW what a comparrison you gave lol.

Now lets see what the BIBLE says about ANTS:
The Ants in the Bible

Ants are mentioned twice in the Bible.

Proverb 6:6-8

6 Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise!
7 It has no commander, no overseer or ruler,
8 yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.

Proverbs 30:24-25 (King James Version)

24There be four things which are little (smallest) upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise:
25The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat (food) in the summer;
Ants are creatures of little strength
Ants are a people not strong

In the Bible the only characters that match the science are the wisdom of the Ants and their ability to word hard.
However, the Bible says that Ants have no commander, no overseer or ruler which is not scientifically true because the Ants have commander, overseer and ruler.
Also, the Bible says that the Ants are not strong which is not scientifically correct because the Ants can carry up to 50 times their weight.
How come that a weight lifter who is capable to carry up to 50 times his weight is considered NOT STRONG?

Wed, 7 Jul 2010 16:08

Hogan replies:

This information on ‘four stages’ I have read fully on the website of Osama Abdallah.

Before you lol at my reference to Origen make sure to read what Origen actually writes; Celsus did not state that ants just communicate, he described what you find in the Qur’an in a much deeper and wider scientific language:

'Nor does he regard the ants as devoid of reason, who professed to speak of "universal nature," and who boasted of his truthfulness in the inscription of his book. For, speaking of the ants conversing with one another, he uses the following language: "And when they meet one another they enter into conversation, for which reason they never mistake their way; consequently they possess a full endowment of reason, and some common ideas on certain general subjects, and a voice by which they express themselves regarding accidental things."337’

Celsus states here that: 1) ants are not devoid of reason; 2) that they converse with one another; 3) that ants meet together to converse which each other; 4) and because of this they never mistake their way 5) and finally that they express themselves about accidental things.

Thus is not a weak comparison it stresses the point much further than the Qur’an and it includes your so called ‘for stages’ and even more.

Hence even if the Qur’an is accurate about ant communication the Qur’an is not presenting anything miraculous of origin, since these ideas seemed to flourish prior to Islam, even among the pagan worshippers.

Let’s look at your claim that the Bible wrongly describes individual ants as physically weak. The Biblical passage you are quoting says:

24There be four things which are little (smallest) upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise:
25The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat (food) in the summer;
Ants are creatures of little strength Ants are a people not strong
(Proverbs 30:24-25)

I find it funny that you even misunderstand and hence misinterpret an English translation.

Firstly, the statement that ‘ants are a people not strong’ does not refer to individual ants but the ants as a community.

The Hebrew word for ‘people’ is ‘am’ which means nation or tribe. Hence because of their size compared other species, ants constitute a weak society.

This has nothing to do with their individual physical strength but the strength of the ant community as compared to stronger physical community, which also lies in the word ‘strong’ in Hebrew ‘az’ which refers much more to the strength and power of a nation than that of an individual’s physical strength.

Furthermore, the passage you quoted states that ants are exceedingly wise, that is by observation scientifically true and something that has fascinated researchers for the last 2500 years.

As to your second passage from the book of Proverbs you commit similar errors. The passage you are quoting says:

6 Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! 7 It has no commander, no overseer or ruler (Proverb 6:6-8).

You somehow assume that Solomon is rejecting the fact that ants have a queen or that younger ants may learn from each other, but this is not what the passage is advocating.

Firstly, the word ‘commander’, which in Hebrew is ‘Mashiach’ refers particularly to a general or a commander who guides the army in battle. While it is true that younger ants learn from the older, there is virtually no scientific evidence that ants have a military commander, or an official that literally controls their work to make sure that each and every ant actually works.

Furthermore, the word ‘overseer’ (in Hebrew Shoter) refers to a magistrate, basically an administrator. Again, as I stated: younger ants may learn from older, but there is no evidence that ants utilize ant offices, possess records of their store rooms, keep complain offices or communication offices, or anything like it. There is basically no ant administration similar to a human administration in a human work culture and environment.

Finally, the word ‘ruler’ (in Hebrew: Mashal) is not a direct reference to a king or a queen, as many Muslims assume when they read this passage. On the contrary ‘Mashal’ is simply a reference to authority. This is quite a contrast to the typical Muslim assumption, even though ants have a queen over them, the ant queen does not rule over its community like a typical human king utilizing a oppressive authority. The relationship between the queen and the ants are not the same as that of a typical human relationship to a ruling body or king.

Hence far from your claim about Biblical inaccuracy, the Bible at this point is everything but inaccurate.

Yet I would like to challenge you, once again, to educate me on the ability of the ant to perceive the person Solomon and his political status.

UPDATE: ...................................................................................................................................

Ayaz wrote this reply to me on the 7th July, unfortunately, I only received part of his rebuttal, but I will post it as it comes. I have conferred with Ayaz to respond to me on the comment section of this thread; that would be the easiest.

Date: July 7, 2010:

Ayaz wrote:

...ok let me reply to your rebutal on (1) Origen's writings Celsus that they contain greater scientific miracle on the Ants than Quran and (2) Educating you and christians alike Sam shamoun and David Wood etc on this miracle. my previous reply to you I stated Origen only STATES ANT COMMUNICATE on a basic converse level.

You then quite cleverly stated 5 points (1) Ants are not devoid by any reason(2)that they converse with one another(3) the ants meet together and coverse *points 2 and 3 are identical (4)Because of this they never mistake there way(5)they express themselves about accidental things..

All you have done is prove my point that Origen stated Ants communicate and then you build a straw man and say SEE ORIGEN NEW THIS BEFORE THE QURAN.Firstly whether Origen knew ants communciate before the revelation of the Qur

Date 10 July, 2010

Hogan replies:

Let me first say there is no point educating Sam Shamoun and David Wood on Islam, both brothers of mine, possess more knowledge about Islam than most Islamic apologists and even present Islam more accurately according to the Islamic sources.

In sharp contrast to your conclusion that I somehow have confirmed your point, notice the depth of my point. Your statement based upon Osama Abdalla's website states that the passage is a miracle because ants simply communicate and are able to perceive each other's communication, that is exactly what I already pointed out and what the text of Origen concluded. What you are doing here is attacking a strawman, claiming that you have effectively refuted the argument, while in fact you have merely attempted to present a case that is already absorbed by the source that I already utilized.

Let me clarify this.

Your argument includes for stages in an act of communication: 1) the ant is able to rise alarm, 2) which prepares the ants for further information, 3) then the ants prepare themselves for the information and 4) finally obey the information.

Unfortunately I am not very impressed by this argument at all! Furthermore, lets adduce from Origen if these four stages are not effectively absorbed by Celsus' description of ant communication.

Celsus stated that ants possess reason, this would already be sufficient evidence that Celsus believed ants possessed basic understanding. Point 2 and 3 are also vital and they are not entirely identical as you assume. Celsus points out that ants actually meet together to communicate. This suggests that ants possess the ability to communicate with each other about matters of concern. The claim that ants can meet together in a organised framework presents much more ability to reason than ants who simply pay attention to a signal, many animals and insects do that. Furthermore Celsus pointed out that ants hardly failed due to their ability to communicate (by language) and finally they adapt these stages in their communication about accidental matters. Hence Celsus describes ants as much more effective in their communication skills and stages than the Qur'an.