Allah, the Exalted is He has erected the heavens without pillars that you can see and adorned it with stars. He made the earth stretched and livable as He says,
“So walk among its slopes” [Al-Quran, surah Al-Mulk, verse 15]
He also says with reference to His limitless Might and Power:
“Vision perceives Him not, but He perceives [all] vision; and He is the Subtle, the Acquainted.” [Al-Quran, surah Al-An’am, verse 103]
No wonder then, that His knowledge encompasses all and everything, and that He makes his Creation in the best of form. He says,
“Who perfected everything which He created and began the creation of man from clay.” [Al-Quran, surah Sajada, verse 7]
The same is accentuated in the following verse:
“It is Allah who has created seven heavens and of the earth, the like of them. [His] command descends among them so you may know that Allah is over all things competent and that Allah has encompassed all things in knowledge.” [Al-Quran, surah At-Talaq, verse 12]
Indeed, there is no better than the universe to speak of Allah’s verse and unquestionable evidence of His existence. That is, He is the Lord of the Worlds: the heavens and the earth. There is no doubt either that everything in between them confirms the fact that He is the one and only Creator. He says,
“This is the creation of Allah. So show Me what those other than Him have created. Rather, the wrongdoers are in clear error.” [Al-Quran, surah Luqman, verse 11]
The Universe is abounding with facts for us to probe. So whoever delves into them, surely will be guided to the ultimate truth of the existence of the Almighty Allah. Moreover, He will see his Iman (faith) in his Lord increased and would say as reported in the Holy Quran:
“Our Lord, You did not create this aimlessly; exalted are You [above such a thing]; then protect us from the punishment of the Fire.” [Al-Quran, surah Ali-Imran, verse 191]
Indeed, Iman gets stronger through knowledge of scientific truths around us, which by the grace of Allah, guides us towards a deep understanding of His creatures and other signs of His in the vast universe. In this regard, He says,
“Then do they not look at the camels – how they are created? And at the sky – how it is raised? And at the mountains – how they are erected? And at the earth – how it is spread out? So remind, [O Muhammad]; you are only a reminder.” [Al-Quran, surah Al-Ghashiya, verse 17-21]
Indeed, what would be a greater gift than such an understanding that leads us to the right path, lets us know about Allah’s sublime status, duly extol Him and pray to Him. In this respect, Allah addressed His Messenger saying,
“So know, [O Muhammad], that there is no deity except Allah and ask forgiveness for your sin and for the believing men and believing women.” [Al-Quran, surah Muhammad, verse 19].
However, ignorance of Him causes us to fail in appraising Him as it ought to be, hence drifting away from the correct path. Allah says,
“And they did not appraise Allah with true appraisal” [Al-Quran, surah Al-An’am, verse 91].
Knowledge, as well as scientific research, brought us many more benefits, causing an impressive transformation of life on earth. It has offered solutions to us. If our ancestors led a basic life, we are, however, able to explore space and communicate across cultures and distance matters less here. In this process of fast and beneficial change, we are reaping the gains of science and research, permitting us to enjoy a better life and further contribute to it in many aspects.
With its clear advantages, science is highly important, so much so that the Holy Quran has urged us to harness its means in the first of its verses. It says,
“Recite in the name of your Lord who created man from a clinging substance. Recite, and your Lord is the most Generous -Who taught by the pen-taught man that which he knew not.” [Al-Quran, surah Al-Alaq, verse 1-5]
These verses motivated Muslims through past ages to pursue the path of learning and undertake research in various branches of science, including their practical implementation. Thus, they laid the foundation of many fields of study, contributed to more than a knowledge system and thereby paved the way to the development of scholarship culture that had benefited humanity at large.
In medicine, early Muslims, inspired by the Hadith saying,
“Seek medical treatment, for Allah, has not created any disease but He has created a cure for it.” [Narration in Musnad Ahmad]
Embarked upon the discovery of medicines for ills and were the first to endorse research using empirical methods. Thanks to their efforts, many branches of specialized medical practices and practitioners had emerged. There was, for example, Kahhals (equivalent to the modern concept of ophthalmologists), and surgeons, Hajjams, the first who invented medical incision tools. In the same field, The Canon of Medicine of Ibn Sina (Avicenna) remained an influential reference for centuries.
In the evolution of many sciences, credit goes to Muslims scholars, including al-Khwarizmi, who founded algebra; Jaber Ibn Hayan and al Razi in contributing to the development of chemistry; al-Bayruni and al-Hamadani in geology and geography. The latter classified many types of minerals and crystals. Muslims were also active in defining many concepts in the fields of mechanics, optics and acoustics.
The contribution of Muslims to science and technology helped in establishing the basis for modern science. The impact of their work is still felt and serves people. It is the kind of actions that was hailed by our Prophet Muhammad when he said,
“The best person is the one who benefits all human beings.” [Musnad al Shihab]
May Allah direct us all to the blessings of the Glorious Quran and the Sunnah of His Messenger and benefit us all in whatever is in them.