The Book of Signs: There are no scientific miracles in the Qur’an
30 Sep 2015
Miracles / I'jaz, History of Science
In this episode of the Global Dawah Movement Show, Imran Hussein and Hamza Tzortzis suggest why the global Muslim narratives that use scientific “facts” to “prove” the miraculousness of the Qurʾān should no longer be used. The reason they are so adamant, they explain, is because “it has created doubt and apostasies” (15:29).
Hamza Tzortzis reviews the history of the idea of these sorts of miracles, also known as iʿjāz, which he suggests began with Maurice Bucaille in 1976. He notes how they were augmented by the Commission on Scientific Signs in the Quran and and Sunnah through the work of Abdul-Majeed al-Zindani in the 1980s. They were further popularized, he explains, by Zakir Naik and Yusuf Estes and even himself.
Tzortzis constructs three sorts of iʿjāz: A) The Prophet did not have access to the scientific knowledge in the Quran, therefore it must be miraculous; B) No one at the time of revelation had access to the necessary equipment or could have verified the scientific knowledge in the Quran, therefore it is miraculous; and C) The verses were revealed when scientific knowledge was so primitive, no human could have uttered those truths, so it is miraculous. He then debunks each of these in turn, using some examples common in the iʿjāz literature, like iron coming from meteors, the Big Bang, and the light from the moon being reflected.
They note that the next episode of the show will resolve the problem by demonstrating how timeless the Qurʾān is.
The material on Islam is within the bounds of what Muslims have historically understood as acceptable.
The material on science is accepted by a consensus of contemporary scientists.
Most of the historical material is accurate. It is not accurate that the literature on scientific miracles in the Qurʾān began with Bucaille, although he certainly popularized it on a different level than before.
About Hamza Tzortzis
Hamza Tzortzis is of Greek origin, though he was born and raised in London, England. Raised in Hackney, a rougher part of London, Tzortzis became involved in gang life and never finished a university degree after a plagiarism scandal. Following his difficulties in academics, he pursued project management in the business field; however, after a few encounters with Muslim friends, Tzortzis became more and more interested in Islam.
Tzortzis is now well known for delivering controversial lectures, workshops, and courses at various universities across the world on Islamic thought, in addition to participating in various debates where he uses philosophy to defend Islam. His interests lie around Islam, politics, and philosophy. Tzortzis is in charge of the Islamic Education and Research Academy’s (iERA) research team, and is also an instructor for AlKauthar Institute, a proselytizing organization.
As of 2015, Tzortzis is active on social media networks, operating public Facebook and Twitter pages, each with thousands of followers. His personal website also hosts his collection of research, debates, and lectures.
The Deen Show: Hamza Andreas Tzortzis. Perf. Eddie Redzovic. The Religion of Islam. Clip from The Deen Show, n.d. Accessed 24 May 2015.
“Hamza Andreas Tzortzis.” Hamza Andreas Tzortzis RSS. N.p., n.d. Accessed 24 May 2015.
“Hamza Tzortzis.” AlKauthar Institute. AlKauthar Institute, n.d. Accessed 24 May 2015.
Tzortzis, Hamza. “Hamza Andreas Tzortzis.” Facebook. N.p., n.d. Accessed 24 May 2015.
Tzortzis, Hamza. Twitter. N.p., n.d. Accessed 24 May 2015.
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.
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.