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, 15 May 2010

The Muslim 'Hello' and his useless refutation of Lucretius and the Qur'an

I have in a number of my articles pointed out the resemblances of the postulates of the pre-Islamic Roman philosopher Lucretius with the Qur’an.

From there I tend to ask Muslims whether they believe Lucretius was inspired, since he proposed the same ideas and even got a number of scientific details more accurate than the Qur’an.

Funny, because over and over again Muslims will typically argue that Lucretius made some serius errors and hence he could not be divinely inspired.

Having made this statements, Muslims like 'Hello' and others think they have silenced me. However, I have made it very clear that I do not believe Lucretius to be any more inspired than the authors of the Qur’an: Lucretius made serious scientific errors and so do the authors of the Qur’an; what I find particularly interesting however, is that Lucretius makes a number of accurate scienitific propositions on which the Qur’an is silence, hence, ought Muslims not therefore to wave goodbye to their Islamic religion and become followers of Lucretius?

Hello, a desparate Muslim who continually posts on on this blog (typically attacking me personally, making incredible claims, posting a number of irrelevant and weak arguments including his attempt to spam the threads by drowning me in arguments) has attempted to debunk me and my use of Lucretius.

Funny Hello, claims to be a well read scholar, having read Ehrman and Geza Vermas (which I honestly doubt he has), he also claims that I simply utilize anti-Islamic websites, whereas the reader can check my articles and his posts and find that Hello is the only one bound by websites while I restort to deploy actual sources and investigation in my studies and rebuttal of Islam.

Here Hello attempts to prove that Lucretius failed drastically to indicate the view of sub-atomic matter and secondly, Hello attempts to prove that Lucretius failed to realise that the earth is spherical unlike so many other philosophers who preceeded him (I guess that is what Hello has in mind).

Notice that Hello fails to realise that there is no point to prove Lucretius wrong anyway, nobody believes that Lucretius was free from errors or operated under divine inspiration.

Furthermore, notice that Hello does not even investigate Lucretius’ writings he simply plagiarizes a critical introduction of a modern scholar to Lucretius. Even worse the, the passage on the atoms leads no where, and the second passage is simply wrong.

Hello wrote:

Could The works of Lucretius be divine revelation? Lets take a look.
Taken from Mathematical and Scientific and "Miscalculations" in

De Rerum Natura, Book I

In 599–634 Lucretius sets forth arguments to prove that there are "least parts" of atoms. If there is no pre-set limit to the successive dividing in half of matter, each atom could be said to consist of an infinite number of parts. According to Lucretius the universe itself contains an infinite number of parts. In his mind the idea of infinite divisibility of an atom led to the paradox of making each atom equal to the whole universe, since both De Rerum Natura 2 equal infinity. Lucretius is so moved by the force of this paradox that in emotional tones
he says: "But since true reasoning cries out and denies that the mind can believe it, you must admit to defeat and now accept that there are things which no longer consist endowed with any parts and are the smallest nature" (623–626).

Hogan replies:

Mr or mrs ‘Hello’, why is Lucretius even in a dialogue about matter that is smaller than atoms and which even exists within atoms? If the Qur’an even refers to atoms and it truly means that there are smaller particles, this is exactly what we find in Lucretius. Furthermore, Lucretius is even more accurate to claim that this matter could exist within the atoms. Furthermore, Lucretius’ claim that the sub-atomic matter must be infinite does not support your case at all, this appears to be his argument against those who believe in smaller particles. In other words the belief in sub-atomic particles existed already in 50 BC and Lucretius at least makes us a favour to mention it, and Lucretius’ referrence to the infinity of matter was simply Lucretius’ argument and not necessarily the view of those who held to the view.
I am completely at odd with what your quotation has proven that supports Islam, the only conclusion is: that the belief in particles smaller than atoms was not absent from the pre-Islamic community.

Hello also posted this:

Historians of Mathematics note that although Aristotle (c. 384–322 B.C.E.) had difficulty with certain aspects of infinity, it is clear that he at least understood the concept of infinitesimals as used by mathematicians of his day, as seen in expressions such as: "for that which is continuous is divisible without limit" (lit. "unto what is boundless," Physics, 185b); "from the divisibility among magnitudes (which the mathematicians treat as without limit)" (Physics, 203b, see also 206b for a further statement followed by a mathematical illustration).
Archimedes (c. 287–212 B.C.E.) says that it was Emulous (c. 408–355 B.C.E.) who
actually used the concept of infinitesimals in the so-called "method of exhaustion" in mathematical proofs to derive the relationship between pyramids and prisms, and between cones and cylinders (in each case the former contains one-third the volume of the latter), and also that circles are to one another as the squares of the diameters. (The Thirteen Books of Euclid's Elements, transl. by Sir Thomas L. Heath, Vol. III, Cambridge, 1926, see "Historical Note" beginning Book XII, pg. 365). These principles are given mathematical treatment in Euclid's Elements (c. 300 B.C.E.; circles in xii, 2; pyramids in xii, 7; cones in xii, 10).
Lucretius' problem was of a conceptual nature. Mathematicians did not argue the
feasibility of actual, physical infinite division of objects (which, of course, would take an infinite amount of time to accomplish). What Lucretius found unbelievable was a very useful mathematical concept that had long been in use to solve practical problems in determining surface areas and volumes of solids.

Hogan replies:

So you are saying (I guess) based upon a secondary piece of information that Lucretius did not believe in a spherical earth?

Well that is plainly false:

Firstly, it is impossible to deny from the writings of Lucretius whether he did not view the earth to be central; he actually wrote:

We now have to consider how the earth remains fixed in the middle of the world.’ (Lucretius, 1957: 187)

Furthermore, concerning the issue of the earth being spherical or not, Lucretius does describe the earth drawing itself by its own energy below and above the globe of the earth (Lucretius, 1957: 191)

Hence I can point out a number of short falls with Hello’s approach:

1) He totally misunderstands my use of Lucretius

2) He uses secondary sources rather than primary sources (that is: he fails to study Lucretius’ writings and satisfies himself and thinks he satisfies me by quoting a modern opinion of Lucretius); Hello leaves me very unimpressed

3) Hello fails to see that even his secondary sources do not back up his attempt to refute me and that they are plainly wrong and misinterpret the primary sources.

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