Reflect – mathematical symmetry in the Quran


7 Feb 2014

Mathematics, Miracles / Ijaz

Imran Hussein

Imran Hussein presents material that he says he found on a blog post, which is no longer extant.  He specifically notes that he’s not going to call it a miracle, but at the same time suggests that it also demonstrates the divine origin of the Qurʾān.  He adds all the surah numbers (1 through 114) and all the verse counts in each surah, and then compares them to other sums.

As usual, Hussein’s vlog is visually interesting, with a skillful mix of black and white and color.

The vlog includes a back bumper for the London Dawah Movement, a proselytizing group.  Notably, this video no longer exists on their user page.


Although much of what Hussein is presenting here coheres with majority views in Islam, we need to keep in mind that the standard verse numbering one finds in mass-produced Qurʾāns is a modern development.  As noted in the comments of the video, some scholars include the bism-allah al-rahman al-rahim (In the name of God…) at the beginning of the first surah of the Qurʾān as a verse, and others do not.  This might be why the original blog post that Hussein saw has since been deleted.

The mathematics here is interesting, but beware that some of what Hussein says is not true.  For instance, towards the end of the vlog, he suggests that if you changed the order of the chapters you would get a different result.  The commutative property of addition explains that it does not matter what order you add numbers in, you will always get the same result.  The term “checksum” is also incorrectly used.  A checksum is run to see if data return a sum that was previously computed in order to verify that the data has not been accidentally altered. And since every number is either even or odd, statistically we would expect the values to be very close to or exactly evenly divided.

There is insufficient historical material on which to base an evaluation.

About Imran Hussein

Imran Hussein is most well known in the dawah movement, specifically in the United Kingdom. As of 2015, he works for the Islamic Education and Research Academy (iERA) as a community organizer, public speaker, and instructor. Though he now works as an educator for Islam, Hussein’s degree at the University of Buckinghamshire is in Industrial Design and Engineering. The topics of Hussein’s lectures according to his biography on the iERA website are as follows: the existence of God, reasons to believe, purpose of life, why Islam, Islam v. Atheism, and the importance of dawah.

Hussein updates his public Facebook and Twitter quite regularly, with several posts in 2015. He updates with less frequency his personal website that functions as a blog, with one posting there from 2015.

Selected Bibliography:

Hussein, Imran. “Imran Hussein.” Facebook. Facebook, n.d. Accessed 26 May 2015.

Hussein, Imran. “Imran Hussein.” Imran Hussein. N.p., n.d. Accessed 26 May 2015.

Hussein, Imran. Twitter. Twitter, n.d. Accessed 26 May 2015.

Imran Hussein.” Islamic Education and Research Academy. IERA, n.d. Accessed 26 May 2015.