Saturday, April 02, 2005

Miracles of Mountains in Noble Quran

In geology, the phenomenon of 'folding', is a recently discovered fact. Folding is responsible for the formation of mountain ranges. The earth's crust, on which we live, is like a solid shell, while the deeper layers are hot and fluid, and thus inhospitable to any form of life. It is also known that the stability of the mountains is linked to the phenomenon of folding, for it was the folds that were to provide foundations for the reliefs that constitute the mountains. Geologists tell us that the radius of the Earth is about 3,750 miles and the crust on which we live is very thin, ranging between 1 to 30 miles. Since, the crust is thin, it has a high possibility of shaking. Mountains act like stakes or tent pegs that hold the earth's crust and give it stability. The QUR'AN contains exactly such a description in the following verse:
"Have WE not made The earth as a wide Expanse, And the mountains as pegs?"
[AL-QUR'AN 78:6-7]
The word 'awtad' means stakes or pegs (like those used to anchor a tent); they are the deep foundations of geological folds. A book named 'Earth' is considered as a basic reference textbook on geology in many universities around the world. One of the authors of this book is Frank Press, who was the President of the Academy of Sciences in the USA for 12 years and was the Scientific Advisor to former US President Jimmy Carter. In this book he illustrates the mountain in a wedge-shape and the mountain itself as a small part of the whole, whose root is deeply entrenched in the ground. {Earth, Press and Siever, p.435. Also see Earth Science, Tarbuck and Lutgens, p. 157} According to Dr. Press, the mountains play an important role in stabilizing the crust of the earth. The QUR'AN clearly mentions the function of the mountains in preventing the earth from shaking:
"And WE have set on the earth Mountains standing firm, Lest it should shake with them."
[AL-QUR'AN 21:31]
The Qur'anic descriptions are in perfect agreement with modern geological data.
The surface of the earth is broken into many rigid plates that are about 100 km in thickness. These plates float on a partially molten region called aesthenosphere.
Mountain formations occur at the boumdary of the plates. The earth's crust is 5 km below oceans, about 35 km thick below flat continental surfaces and almost 80 km thick below great mountain ranges. These are the strong foundations on which mountains stand. The QUR'AN also speaks about the strong mountain foundations in the following verse:
"And the mountains Hath HE firmly fixed."
[AL-QUR'AN 79:32]