Who Created The Heavens And The Earth In Six Days? Part I

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Who Created The Heavens And The Earth In Six Days? Part I

Post by Lalia on Mon May 12, 2008 4:44 am

“Indeed your Lord is Allâh, Who created the heavens and the earth in Six Days, and then He Rose and Dominated (Istawâ) over the Throne (in a manner that uniquely suits His Majesty).” (Surat Al-Araf (The Heights):54)

The fact that the universe was created in six days was mentioned in the Holy Qur’an in eight verses where Allah (SWT) says what can be translated as:

1. Surat al-Araf (The Heights): 54: “Indeed your Lord is Allâh, Who created the heavens and the earth in Six Days, and then He rose and Dominated (Istawâ) over the Throne (in a manner that uniquely suits His Majesty). He brings the night as a veil over the day, seeking it continuously without delay, and (He created) the sun, the moon and the stars subjected to His Command. Surely, to Him is the Creation and Commandment. Blessed is Allâh, the Lord of the ‘Âlamîn (mankind, jinn and all that exists)!”

2. Surat Yunus (Jonah): 3: Surely, your Lord is Allâh Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days and then rose and Dominated (Istawâ ) over the Throne (in a manner that uniquely suits His Majesty), disposing the affair of all things. No intercessor (can plead with Him) except after His Leave. That is Allâh, your Lord; so worship Him (Alone). Then, will you not remember?

3. Surat Hud (Prophet Hud): 7: And it is He, Who has created the heavens and the earth in six Days and His Throne was on the water, that He might try you to know which of you is the best in deeds. …"

4. Surat al-Furqan (The Criterion): 59: (Allah) Who created the heavens and the earth and all that is between them in six Days. Then He Rose and Dominated (Istawâ) over the Throne (in a manner that uniquely suits His Majesty). The Most Gracious (Allâh)! Ask Him (O Prophet Muhammad - pbuh), as He is Al-Khabîr (The All-Knower of everything).

5. Surat as-Sajdah (Prostration): 4: Allâh it is He Who has created the heavens and the earth, and all that is between them in six Days. Then He Rose and Dominated (Istawâ) over the Throne (in a manner that uniquely suits His Majesty). You (mankind) have none, besides Him, as a Walî (protector or helper) or an intercessor. Will you not then remember (or receive admonition)?

6. Sűrat Fussilat (They are Explained in detail): 9: Say (O Prophet Muhammad - pbuh): "Do you verily disbelieve in Him Who created the earth in two Days? And you set up rivals with Him (in worship)? That is the Lord of the ‘Âlamîn (mankind, jinn and all that exists). 10. He placed therein (i.e. the earth) firm mountains from above, and He blessed it, and assessed therein its sustenance (for its dwellers) in four equal Days (i.e. all these four days were equal in the length of time) for all those who would ask (about its creation). 11. Then He Rose and Dominated (Istawâ) over the heaven when it was smoke, and Said to it and to the earth: "Come both of you willingly or unwillingly." They both said: "We come willingly." 12. Then He finished from their creation as seven heavens in two Days and He instilled in each heaven its affair. And We (Allah) adorned the nearest (lowest) heaven with lamps (stars) to be an adornment as well as guards (from the devils by using them as missiles against them). Such is the Decree of Him the All-Mighty, the All-Knower.

7. Surat Qaf (a letter of the Arabic alphabet corresponding to the letter “L”): 38: And indeed We created the heavens and the earth and all between them in six Days and nothing of fatigue touched Us.

8. Surat al-Hadid (Iron): 4: It is He Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days and then Rose and Dominated (Istawâ) over the Throne (in a manner that uniquely suits His Majesty). He knows what goes into the earth and what comes forth from it, and what descends from the heaven and what ascends thereto. And He is with you (by His Knowledge) wherever you may be. And Allâh is the All-Seer of what you do.

The majority of scholars who have interpreted the meanings of the Qur’an have agreed that the creation of the heavens and earth in six days came on six stages, or six incidents, or six phases, or consecutive cosmic events. The lengths of which are only known to Allah. They cannot be like our days on earth because the earth was not created yet. That’s why these days were not depicted by the Qur’an description “of what you reckon” that came in many other verses of the Qur’an to indicate our days on earth.

Significance of the word “yaum: day” in the Holy Qur’an
The word “day” in addition to its derivatives were mentioned 475 times in the Qur’an; of these it came as “al-yaum: today – this day” 349 times, as “yauman: days” 16 times, which makes a total of 365 times (same number of days per year). It also came as “yaumakum: your days”, “yaumahum: their days”, “yaumayn: two days”, “ayyam: many days”, “ayyaman: few days” 109 times, to indicate specific incidents or specific numbers of days. The two terms “yauma’idhin: that day” and “yauma’idh: on that day” to indicate a specific time.

In the Arabic language the word “yaum: day” (plural, ayyam: days) is used to denote the period between two consecutive transits of the sun. In other words, it denotes daytime between two consecutive nights. It also denotes either day and night times (or what’s known as a full day or the “Mean Solar Day”. It is also the period during which the earth travels a full turn round its axis relative to the sun. Further, it is the time span between two consecutive sunsets or sunrises totaling to 24 full hours.

In Arabic also the phrase “since the first days of..” denotes the first days of any specific date or time. Sometimes they use the word “yaum: day” to denote “troubled times” for an individual or for a group of people, like saying: “a day like the days of Aad[1]” ,“a day like the days of Thamud”, “a day like the days of the Arabs”, “a day in lifetime”.

“Day” can be used to denote a certain span of time, no matter what its length. That means that the word “day” from the linguistic point of view is a generic term that varies in its significance according to the context it is placed in.

The word “day” came in Qur’an with all these meanings.. it came meaning “daytime” in this verse of the Qur’an, that can translated as,

Surat al-Baqarah (The Cow): 196. “…but if he cannot afford it, he should observe Saum (fasting) three days during the Hajj…”

And this verse that can be translated as: Sűrat Al-Hâqqah (The Inevitable): 7. Which Allâh imposed on them for seven nights and eight days in succession …

It came as the typical day of planet earth (the interval earth takes to travel round its axis facing the sun in 24 hours), as in the verse that can be translated as, Sűrat Al-Baqarah (The Cow): 203. And remember Allâh during the appointed Days. But whosoever hastens to leave in two days, there is no sin on him and whosoever stays on, there is no sin on him, if his aim is to do good and obey Allâh …

It also came as a specific day of the week as in the verse that can be translated as, Sűrat Al-Jumu‘ah (Friday): 9. O you who believe (Muslims)! When the call is proclaimed for the Salât (prayer) on Friday (Jumu‘ah prayer), come to the remembrance of Allâh and leave your trading and business. That is better for you if you did but know!

Also in the verse that can be translated as, Surat al-Araf (The Heights): 163. And ask them (O Muhammad - pbuh) about the town that was by the sea; when they transgressed in the matter of the Sabbath (i.e. Saturday): when their fish came to them openly on the Sabbath day, and did not come to them on the day they had no Sabbath. Thus We afflicted them, for they used to rebel against Allâh’s Command (disobey Allâh).

It also came to denote a specific day of the year like the day of the Hajj (the day of Arafa – or the ninth day of Dhul-Hijjah).

It also came to denote a specific incident in history like: “the day of the Festival”, “the day of overshadowing gloom”, “the day of testing”, “the day of Hunain”, “the day of disaster”, “the day of Decision”

It came to denote certain signs of destroying the cosmic system before the Day of Judgment like: “the Day when the earth and the mountains will be in violent shake”, “the Day when the sky will bring forth a kind of smoke plainly visible”, “the Day when the heavens will be in dreadful commotion”

It came to denote a day from the days of Allah whose span would be beyond our grasp or realization. To make us realize its significance it was compared to our own years in addition to the Qur’anic description “of what you reckon”, like in the verse that can be translated as, Sűrat Al-Hajj (The Pilgrimage): 47. And they ask you to hasten on the torment! And Allâh fails not His Promise. And verily, a day with your Lord is as a thousand years of what you reckon.

Allah (Exalted be He) says what can be translated as, Sűrat As-Sajdah (The Prostration): 5. He manages and regulates (every) affair from the heavens to the earth; then everything will go up to Him, in one Day, the span whereof is a thousand years of what you reckon (on earth).

“Day” came in the Qur’an as meaning: phase, stage, incident or cosmic event in verses like: (Surat al-Araf - verse 7, Surat Yunus – verse 3, Surat Hud – verse 7, Surat al-Furqan – verse 59, Surat as-Sajdah – verse 4, Surat Qaf – verse 38 and Surat al-Hadid – verse 4).

It also came as meaning the “day of judgment” in different utterances and in different contexts like:
The Day of Requital (yaumud-een)
The Day of Resurrection (yaumuq-qiama)
The Hour (yaumus-saa’)
The Day of Sorting Out (yaumul-fasl)
The Day of Judgment (yaumul-hisab)
The Day of Assembly (yaumuj-jame’)
The Day of Mutual Meeting (yaumut-taq’)
The Day when there will be mutual calling and wailing (yaumut-tana’d)
The Day that is ever drawing (yaumul-azefa)
The day of Testimony (yaumul-ash’had)
The Day of Distress (yaumul-hasra)
The Day of mutual loss and gain (yaumul-taghabun)
The Day whereof Warning had been given (yaumul-wae’id)
The day of Resurrection from the graves (yaumul-khuruj)
The day of eternal life (yaumul-khulud)

.. And many other meanings denoting the day of resurrection, judgment and eternal life.

Significance of the word “day” in Astronomy
The Mean Solar Day, stands for the interval where the earth completes a full turn round its axis relative to the sun. In our times this interval is estimated by 24 hours, shared between both daytime and night time. As for the Sidereal Day (which is about 3 minutes and 56 seconds less than the Solar Day) it can be measured as the interval the interval between two passages of a given star across the observer’s meridian. The small difference between the intervals of both days is due to the fact that while the earth completes a full turn round its axis relative to the sun, it would have covered a distance in its orbit around the sun that could be estimated by 1/365 of the overall length of the orbit’s circumference.

Due to the fact that the earth and all the other celestial bodies in the heavens move in varied speeds and round varied axes.. And due to the fact that each planet has its own physical and orbital elements. Hence, the lengths of these axial and orbital periods would vary from one planet to the other. Consequently, the intervals of days length and year length on each planet would greatly vary from one to the other. So a day length for the planets of the solar system would vary between 58 earth-days (in the nearest planet to the sun, namely, Mercury), to 243 days on planet Venus, to 24 hours on planet earth (divided between the daytime and night time like all planets), to 24 hours and 37 minutes on planet Mars, to 9 hours and 53 minutes on planet Jupiter, to 10 hours - 14 minutes and 24 seconds on planet Saturn, to 17 hours and 14 minutes on planet Uranus, to 16 hours and 6 minutes on planet Neptune.

Also the time span of each year would vary from one planet of the solar system planets to the other depending on the distance of its orbit and the speed in which it covers this distance. For instance, the orbital motion of Mercury round the sun can be estimated by 88 earth-days, whereas that of Venus can be estimated by 224.7 earth-days and that of earth can be estimated by 365.256 days. That of Mars can be estimated by 686.98 earth-days, that of Jupiter can be estimated by 11.86 earth-years and that of Saturn can be estimated by 29.46 earth-years. On the other hand, that of Uranus can be estimated by 84.07 earth-years, that of Neptune can be estimated by 164.81 earth-years and that of Pluto can be estimated by 248.53 earth-years. Whereas, the sun completes one full turn round its axis in 25 earth-days. It further covers a full rotation round the galactic center in 225 million earth-years.

The solar system is but a minute spot in our galaxy (the Milky Way) which in turn is but one galaxy among the local galactic group cluster which in turn constitute but a minute spot of the greater galactic cluster. This process of being a part of a bigger form goes on till infinity in a universe that has not been yet realized. All of which are constantly moving in the nearest heaven that has been adorned by Allah (Blessed and Exalted be He) with the stars. The nearest heaven, in turn, is constantly moving within the six other heaven.. and truthful is Allah SWT as He says what can be translated as, “And verily, a day with your Lord is as a thousand years of what you reckon.” (Surat Al-Hajj ( The Pilgrimage):47) Allah (Exalted be He) says what can be translated as, “in one Day, the span whereof is a thousand years of what you reckon (on earth)” (Surat as-Sajdah (The Prostration):5) Allah also says what can be translated as, “The angels and the Rűh [Jibrîl (Gabriel)] ascend to Him in a Day the measure whereof is fifty thousand years” Surat Al-Ma‘ârij (The Ways Of Ascent):4).


By: Dr. Zaghloul Ragheb Mohamed El-Naggar
Professor of Geology, Head, Committee on Scientific Nations in the Glorious Qur'an & Purity Sunnah Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, Cairo, Egypt.
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Lalia
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