Debate: Quran detailing stuff impossible to know without modern scientific gear

Discussion in 'Formal debates' started by scifes, Feb 20, 2010.

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  1. scifes heckle the snobs Valued Senior Member

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    Links to related threads:

    [thread=99425]Proposal thread[/thread]
    [thread=99741]Discussion thread[/thread]
    ---

    nope.
    but i'd like to already ask spidergoat to permit me to take 5 days to reply to his first post.


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    The Quran:
    surat Al-Noor, verse 40

    أَوۡ كَظُلُمَـٰتٍ۬ فِى بَحۡرٍ۬ لُّجِّىٍّ۬ يَغۡشَٮٰهُ مَوۡجٌ۬ مِّن فَوۡقِهِۦ مَوۡجٌ۬ مِّن فَوۡقِهِۦ سَحَابٌ۬*ۚ ظُلُمَـٰتُۢ بَعۡضُہَا فَوۡقَ بَعۡضٍ إِذَآ أَخۡرَجَ يَدَهُ ۥ لَمۡ يَكَدۡ يَرَٮٰهَا*ۗ وَمَن لَّمۡ يَجۡعَلِ ٱللَّهُ لَهُ ۥ نُورً۬ا فَمَا لَهُ ۥ مِن نُّورٍ (٤٠)

    Or [the state of a disbeliever] is like the darkness in a vast deep sea, overwhelmed with waves topped by waves, topped by dark clouds, (layers of) darkness upon darkness: if a man stretches out his hand, he can hardly see it! And he for whom Allâh has not appointed light, for him there is no light. (40


    details:
    1-waves topped by waves.
    2-if a man stretches out his hand, he can hardly see it.

    stuff:
    1- internal waves.
    2-there's more to seas than the photic zone.

    impossible to know:
    1-are invisible.
    2-there's little light* (it's "dimly lit") at 200-1000m deep level, to hardly see your out stretched hand, you go there with just swimming trunks, you go :splat:.
    most pearl hunters dived less than 10 meters, rarely were they able to reach 40.

    without modern scientific gear:
    1-i don't know what gizmo(s) they used for this, but i'm sure muhammad didn't find one on sale in his seasonal bazaar.
    2-submerines, sacchi disks, photometers.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------

    why this one of all others?
    1-my experience of bafflement with this one is personal.
    2- found many "miracles" "debunked" on the net, but didn't find this one so, i certainly want this thread to be as novel as possible

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    .
    3-i pretty much think this is irrefutable, so i'm gonna either enjoy destroying you or enjoy being shown a great flaw in my logic (hope it's no third possibility).


    btw, mohammad's life has been thoroughly documented and noted, and no mentioning of him seeing the ocean(i won't join the ones who assure you he did not, albeit having no proof.)
    and he's also illiterate (albeit some who contradict historical proof and say he's not because he had to scribble on trading contracts)

    *sources conflict, but that's the most common.

    one version of this "miracle" copied all over the internet-with some inaccuracies-, another that isn't so widespread -but seems more scientific-.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 21, 2010
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  3. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    I would like to thank the moderators and scifes for the opportunity to debate here on this forum. My esteemed colleague scifes feels that the Quran has revealed scientific truths that could not have been attributed to the knowledge of the day, showing that it's origins must be supernatural. I hope to prove the opposite, that Mohammed was the origin of the Quran, perhaps inspired by a spiritual experience like so many others in the past, but not by a supernatural entity describing real and futuristic scientific facts. Mohammed's language is poetic, and makes use of metaphors, some of them natural in origin, but used in a fanciful way. The Arabs of Mohammed's time were indeed a clever people, situated in the crossroads of the world, the Middle East, and no doubt knew more than we often give them credit. But, their holy books reflect only the knowledge that could have been known at the time.


    Now, to the questions at hand. What could be the source of the concept of the seas getting darker the farther one goes down? ...And furthermore, what about the phenomenon of multiple waves converging from multiple directions? Could these have been known?

    A fisherman has experience with dropping nets into the sea and noticing the lack of light down there. This passage is easily just a literary flourish, waves on top of waves representing the bombardment with doubts and confusion. Certainly a fisherman would also be aware of noticing separate waves from multiple directions. Even if Mohammed didn't live near the Ocean, he could have heard of tales from this profession. Also, the darkness doesn't necessarily refer to the depths of the Ocean, it could just mean the darkness one sees on a moonless night.

    I myself have taken part in measuring the Chesapeake Bay for opacity, and the gear is a disk with a high contrast black and white pattern painted on it, attached to a rope.

    Things Mohammed could have found in his time:
    1. rope
    2. a disk of wood or stone
    3. paint (optional)

    The only reason such a disk is required is to standardize measurements from different places, otherwise any sinkable object tied to a rope would accomplish the same thing.

    I concede 5 days to scifes before he must respond or forfeit.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2010
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  5. scifes heckle the snobs Valued Senior Member

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    i would like to thank spidergoat for allowing me the extra two days, his gesture is much appreciated...as i have just learnt that the guy behind the desk who i had a shouting match with is not actually the supervising manager(as they turned out to look alike when i googled the latter), i guess now my heartbeat is low enough for me to post before the five days limit runs out, the sharp email his boss will be receiving can wait, as my problem with this formal debate is not affording just any time, but time enough for some concentration.

    now, to the matters at hand, i will summarize what spider said the way i understood it, and he may correct me if i'm wrong, i also can't help noticing that his reply was kind of hasty, as i'll address afterwards.

    intro:
    -mohammad's language is poetic, and uses metaphors.
    -arabs+ middle east+ crossroads of the world= arabs are cleverer than usually accredited for.

    main points:
    -fishermen noticing darkness of the sea.
    -the passage is literary flourish.
    -albeit mohammad -pbuh- not living near the ocean:
    a-hearing the tale from fishermen.
    b-the darkness can be that of a moonless night and not of a sea.
    -components for the scientific gear were available at mohammad's time.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    alright! let's start:
    -mohammad's language is poetic, and uses metaphors.
    that's right, and i might generalize by saying:
    i think any language can be poetic, i believe especially arabic, because of it's complex structures.
    metaphors are normally used in poems and such literature, while one may classify the quran as literacy, he has to admit that it's of a whole new level(but that's not our topic).


    -arabs+ middle east+ crossroads of the world= arabs are cleverer than usually accredited for.

    that's true at places, but not others.
    you may even say that mekkah was the religious and literary and a somewhat commercial crossroads of the arabian peninsula too, and muhammad DID work as a merchant, but still your statement needs to be constrained by knowledge of how things were there.


    main points:
    -fishermen noticing darkness of the sea.
    yup, they'd start from the white sandy beaches, to the sky blue shallow waters, to the dark blue waters..but they're fishermen, not oceanologists, and if oceanologists noticed that-or heard fishermen talk about it, they'd write it down and it'll be recorded as science, so when is the first recording of such fact or theory?
    also, it makes sense that if mohammad heard it from fishermen others are bound to hear it too, or hear him hearing it{?!}

    -the passage is literary flourish.
    this topic is too vast to be discussed thoroughly.
    but first, please check this out, and take notice of the shakespear example:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metaphors

    and i'll try to take the arabic side and get straight to the point:
    metaphors like the one in this verse work like this; you have a literary image, a description of a happening, an experience you're trying to convey through your words.
    many times, that experience is novel to the average reader, and so, to pull the reader closer to understanding what you mean, you use a happening from the real world, one easily visualized, which has in common your message.

    like one of my topmost favorites, of a medieval poet(bashar ibnu burd) visualizing a battle:
    كـــأن مثار النقع فوق رؤوسنا واسيافنا ليل تهاوى كـواكبه
    pretty rough:[and the dust cloud raised by the battle combined with our swords is like a night whose stars are falling]

    or one of many similar metaphors in the quran:
    {The metaphor of those who take protectors besides Allah is that of a spider which builds itself a house; but no house is flimsier than a spider's house, if they only knew.} (Surat al-Ankabut, 41)
    {The metaphor of those who reject their Lord is that their actions are like ashes scattered by strong winds on a stormy day. They have no power at all over anything they have earned. That is extreme misguidance.} (Surah Ibrahim, 18)

    in short, a real, physical event is used to explain a "bit" far fetched or obscure one.
    which one would be the one attempted to be explained? which one would be obscure? which one is being explained and clarified? which one is in question, which is the matter being discussed?
    {Or (the Unbelievers' state) is like the depths of darkness in a vast deep ocean, overwhelmed with billow topped by billow, topped by (dark) clouds: depths of darkness, one above another: if a man stretches out his hands, he can hardly see it! for any to whom Allah giveth not light, there is no light! }
    and the seas example is actually the second one, as you can see it even starts with "or", the first one is:
    وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا أَعْمَالُهُمْ كَسَرَابٍ بِقِيعَةٍ يَحْسَبُهُ الظَّمْآنُ مَاء حَتَّى إِذَا جَاءهُ لَمْ يَجِدْهُ شَيْئًا وَوَجَدَ اللَّهَ عِندَهُ فَوَفَّاهُ حِسَابَهُ وَاللَّهُ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ

    {But the Unbelievers,- their deeds are like a mirage in sandy deserts, which the man parched with thirst mistakes for water; until when he comes up to it, he finds it to be nothing: But he finds Allah (ever) with him, and Allah will pay him his account: and Allah is swift in taking account. } then comes the "or like" and then the deep sea metaphor.


    and so, the state being explained is the state of the unbeliever, which is as you said:"(waves on top of waves) representing the bombardment with doubts and confusion", which is being explained by the tangable example of being so deep in the sea you can't even see your outstretched hand, separated from light by waves upon waves topped by clouds, utter darkness and hopelessness.
    now what's the funny thing?
    what the heck kinda explanatory essense would people of that time benefit from something they don't even know exist? how can you explain something hard to understand with something people don't know exist? what will be in the imagination cloud of a desert bedwen when he reads that? "waves upon waves"? "being so deep in water you can't see a thing"?
    did the metaphor serve it's purpose?


    that's where the eternal universality of the quran comes in...IMO.



    -albeit mohammad -pbuh- not living near the ocean:
    a-hearing the tale from fishermen.

    guess i discussed this before.

    the verse clearly states "ocean/sea".
    but actually, when looking up the "tafseer" of this verse by an old islamic scholar-who apparently doesn't know much about oceanology

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    - he said that one of the darknesses was the darkness of the night.. i checked the explanations of other scholars, each had his own version of the details, kinda expected as they were no scientists, but just in case you got wondering(as i did), they say the same thing about other religious conclusions. they leave the science to the scientists.



    -components for the scientific gear were available at mohammad's time.
    as i mentioned and referenced, that disk is called the secchi disk, the components you mentioned were:
    you forgot:
    4.sea.

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    5.boat and sea deep enough to reach that dark depth.
    6-scientific mind.

    as for the sea, didn't we assume mohammad didn't even see a sea? and that is as far as a right assumption can go, if you want me to support that by giving references and examples of the HUGE details preserved of every detail of mohammad's -pbuh- life, i will.
    you know, i can even give show you that "strange" people he meet and talk to, his personal life, sickness, sayings and habits, jokes and quarrels, all preserved with different categorized levels of credibility, all to the last detail, i've come across a "specialist" in that (the sirah) and he said he's sure mohammad being near a sea is not mentioned.
    also, is the red sea or arabian gulf deep enough? do fishermen fish in such deep waters(in case they exist)?


    lastly, and most importantly; science was never a strong point of mohammad, neither was poetry or magic (of which he was accused of after his prophecy).
    before his "prophecy", muhammad was known for somethings, he was called the "truthful and trustworthy", so that when he turned out (he came from a direction they agreed whoever comes from )to be the one to decide for who to replace the black stone in the ka'ba, after the tribe leaders almost started a bloodbath for that honor. by then he was 25 years old.
    he also used to go "meditate" for days in a cave in a mountain on the outskirts of mekkah, i guess otherwise he was your average sheep herder, later a merchant...


    i don't know where oceanology comes through this, while for me there is an almost 1-2%(practically negligible) that mohammad could have had a normal source for his accurate description of deep sea darkness(which i believe we can appreciate more than the old muslims), but the waves upon waves, i really do see it irrefutable, there's just no way he or ANYONE else could know that cold water is of lower density than hot water, so that the sea is actually of two layers, separated by a surface which has waves identical to surface waves, they can break just like surface ones, yet they are invisible(not waves converging from different directions as you said, check the wiki).

    that separating surface, is full of "dust" of hanging living organisms, those make the third level of darkness, the second is not the surface of the sea, but surface "waves", waves make the angle between the sun rays and the water surface further away(bigger) than 90, hence less penetration(opposed to a smooth water surface), mohammad must have had some serious mathematical and physical knowledge in optics and thermal transfer to conclude such piece of information logically and without even seeing an ocean. the clouds (first level) are obvious of course


    -darkness in deep waters.(maybe/very improbable)
    -internal waves.(still immpossible IMO)
    -the levels of darkness.(also pretty immpossible to know, but correlation in the verse not so definite like the other two)



    i wanted to keep this short and concise, sorry for not doing so.(actually doing the opposite)

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  7. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    Let me just reiterate the passages in question:

    39 As for those who disbelieve, their deeds are as a mirage in a desert. The thirsty one supposeth it to be water till he cometh unto it and findeth it naught, and findeth, in the place thereof, Allah Who payeth him his due; and Allah is swift at reckoning.

    40 Or as darkness on a vast, abysmal sea. There covereth him a wave, above which is a wave, above which is a cloud. Layer upon layer of darkness. When he holdeth out his hand he scarce can see it. And he for whom Allah hath not appointed light, for him there is no light.

    Pickhall translation

    Or

    But those who misbelieve, their works are like the mirage in a plain, the thirsty counts it water till when he comes to it he finds nothing, but he finds that God is with him; and He will pay him his account, for God is quick to take account.

    [40] Or like darkness on a deep sea, there covers it a wave above which is a wave, above which is a cloud,--darknesses one above the other,--when one puts out his hand he can scarcely see it; for he to whom God has given no light, he has no light.

    Palmer translation


    Or

    But as to the infidels, their works are like the vapour in a plain which the thirsty dreameth to be water, until when he cometh unto it, he findeth it not aught, but findeth that God is with him; and He fully payeth him his account: for swift to take account is God:

    Or like the darkness on the deep sea when covered by billows riding upon billows, above which are clouds: darkness upon darkness. When a man reacheth forth his hand, he cannot nearly see it! He to whom God shall not give light, no light at all hath he!

    Rodwell Translation


    ---------------------


    Scifes claims that Muslims could not have known what Mohammed was talking about when he refers to waves, lack of water in the desert, cloudiness and layers of darkness as a metaphor for the state of unbelievers. This would make the preceeding passages completely useless as a means of instruction to Islamic students. As scifes says:
    what the heck kinda explanatory essense would people of that time benefit from something they don't even know exist?​

    Exactly, it would be of no benefit whatsoever, which is why Mohammed must have chosen metaphors that were not obscure but rather common.

    Things scifes claims that Muslims could not know:

    1. darkness in deep waters.
    2. internal waves.
    3. the levels of darkness.


    To claim such things is simply absurd. This isn't oceanography, just the most basic familiarity with the existence of the Ocean, something even the most illiterate desert dweller had no doubt heard about, at least in a story. The direction of my first response was unnecessarily complicated. You don't need an instrument to see that the ocean is dark, or wavy. As Iceaura pointed out in the discussion forum, the Metamorphoses By Ovid contains many of the same references, and it was written about 300 years before the Quran.

    Allow me to address the concept of internal waves. I don't think this idea is even described in the text. Waves upon waves can just mean, "many waves". Note that scifes has the responsibility to show that there can not be any naturalistic interpretation to these texts, that they can only be understood as hints of future scientific discoveries meant to prove the Quran wasn't written by Mohammed himself. But, as I have pointed out, this passage simply warns that not understanding God is like being lost in the wilderness, darkness, and the deep. Furthermore, Mohammed goes on to describe more natural events:
    Hast thou not seen that God driveth clouds lightly forward, then gathereth them together, then pileth them in masses? And then thou seest the rain forthcoming from their midst; and He causeth clouds like mountains charged with hail, to descend from the heaven
    He is not instructing the believer on unknowable weather events, he is saying, in effect, see all these great phenomenon in nature? Yeah? That's God doing it. So, these passages would be useless if the readers had not known about such things in the first place (and wondered on their origins).
     
  8. scifes heckle the snobs Valued Senior Member

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    excellent! you've raised some good points..

    once again, i'll summarize what i understood and reply to it, correct me if i'm wrong anywhere:

    muslims could not have known what mohammad -pbuh- meant in his metaphors, hence he must have used ones they DO understand, for the metaphors to serve their purpose.

    my claims of facts of oceanology mentioned in the quran impossible to know back then are not such, but are basic knowings of the concept of an ocean, definitely reached even the illiterate bedwin. then a reference to Ovid.

    "waves upon waves" could mean "many waves", and not the internal waves. i should prove that the passage was not meant in any naturalistic way, but as a direct hint or proof of a future scientific fact, unlike the passage he gave, which simply is a description of a natural phenomenon followed by awe and wonder at the power of it's said creator.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    muslims could not have known what mohammad -pbuh- meant in his metaphors, hence he must have used ones they DO understand, for the metaphors to serve their purpose.
    a-this is under the assumption that mohammad IS making the metaphors, and not relaying what he gets like a messenger should.

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    b-old muslims did not, yes. modern muslims? don't WE understand it? haven't YOU seen how dark the deep ocean is? how everything is nothing untill the submarine lights "bring" a whole new world into existence?
    and so, the uselessness of the metaphor is only half true, mohammad NOT removing a useless metaphor from his book should say something...

    but so that i don't get carried away under the assumption that mohammad did NOT write the quran -that it was revealed supernaturally- , we'll not forget the question: "why would his metaphor not be something out of te simple known knowledge of that day (as you propose; having a simpler meaning?)", i'll answer that one question later.


    my claims of facts of oceanology mentioned in the quran impossible to know back then are not such, but are basic knowings of the concept of an ocean, definitely reached even the illiterate bedwin. then a reference to Ovid.

    levels of im(probability\possibility):
    -mohammad's life has been heavily recorded and preserved in detail. it is not found there him seeing a sea.

    -fishers and pearl hunters could not dive to such depth, AND were nowhere near waters of that depth[?].

    -fishers and pearl hunters are men of skill, not science. and if an oceanologist found out something he's bound to write it down.

    *** now a little timeout with some psychology***
    A-i think, that the link between seas gradually being darker when leaving shore and darkness in the depths of the seas, is only obvious because we already know of the latter.
    meaning, i believe(and that's all what this is for now), that if we DID get hold of a person from that time, say a fisher man, who's always seen the sea get darker the further away we get from the shore since he was a kid, and asked him if he'd imagine that deep inside the sea, it's pitch black like a dark room, i think he'd either ponder it and agree, or straight out say you're wrong...
    BECAUSE HE'S DIVED IN THE SEA, AND IT'S NOT PITCH BLACK.
    but hey, it gets darker the further you go from the shore, so it's logical that at one point it'll be pitch black..
    but having both black and white cats, black and white dogs, black and white pigeons, black and white goats, and so on...
    ...did not prevent the people of Europe from not believing in the existence of black swans, till they "eye balled" them in Australia

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    not only was the sea getting darker an everlasting aspect of how it(the sea) has always been to them, nothing to spark thought or skepticism... just like falling apples and newton, it's logical, but only after it's been figured out

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    BUT ALSO they are living a reality contrary to the fact that some places in the sea are pitch black.
    i hope this is clear, although not solid proof, i think it's an explanation of why my objective mind didn't quite swallow that gradual darkening of the sea when observed from the surface by fishermen directly dictates that it was known that it's extremely dark in the unreachable depths.
    *** psychology "breather" finished***

    -assuming a fishermen relayed the gradual darkening of the sea to mohammad pbuh:
    /others should've recorded such "dialogue".
    /it's highly unlikely for a shepard/merchant with no scientific background make such a deduction about a sea he's never seen, let alone crossed, let alone dived in.

    i quote from my previous link:
    also there was a differentiation between "special" and "universal" impossibles before i started all this, but i forgot so i'll skim it now;
    -a universal impossible is one impossible to know no matter who, where and under what (normal) conditions a person was, it's impossible for him to know something, the interval waves are such, the deep darkness.. well it may not be THAT impossible for many people around the world.
    -a special impossible; is one that is impossible considering the limitations and considerations the quran was revealed or written in, dark seas is definitely well within the scope of this one.

    as for iceaura's post about ovid, 786's done a great job on that.


    "waves upon waves" could mean "many waves", and not the internal waves.
    nope, it definitly can not, i've studied some arabic literature, and it just is not(guess knowing arabic literature isn't even required for that, look: )
    quoting your own english translations:

    There covereth him a wave, above which is a wave, above which is a cloud.

    there covers it a wave above which is a wave, above which is a cloud

    when covered by billows riding upon billows, above which are clouds:

    it clearly says one over the other, not "upon" as you said.
    the context is that of layering, as the mentioning of the clouds complements.
    and as the later on "darknesses one over the other" suggest too.
    it's as clear as can be, that's one of the reasons why i chose it.



    i should prove that the passage was not meant in any naturalistic way, but as a direct hint or proof of a future scientific fact, unlike the passage he gave, which simply is a description of a natural phenomenon followed by awe and wonder at the power of it's said creator.
    thanks for pointing this out for me(you beat me to it!), as this explains the lack of details you're all questioning us about.
    if god meant this to be a hint to a miracle supporting the quran being revealed from god and not mohammad, yes, it would be logical to be clear about it being a withstanding miracle, like in:

    “And if you (Arab pagans, Jews, and Christians) are in doubt concerning that which We have sent down (i.e. the Quran) to Our servant (Muhammad), then produce a chapter the like thereof and call your witnesses (supporters and helpers) besides God, if you are truthful. But if you do it not, and you can never do it, then fear the Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones, prepared for the disbelievers.” (Quran 2:23-24, emphasis added)

    can't get a challenge like that eh?

    “Or do they say, ‘He (Muhammad) has forged it?’ Say, ‘Bring then a chapter like unto it, and call upon whomsoever you can, besides God, if you are truthful!’” (Quran 10:38)

    “Or do they say, ‘He (Muhammad) forged it.’ Say, ‘Bring you then ten forged chapters like unto it, and call whomsoever you can, other than God (to your help), if you speak the truth.’” (Quran 11:13)

    “Say (to the people), ‘If all of humankind and jinns were together to produce the like of this Quran, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they helped one another.’” (Quran 17:88)

    “Or do they say, ‘He (Muhammad) has forged it?’ Nay! They believe not! Let them then produce a recital like unto it if they are truthful.” (Quran 52:33-34)

    now THOSE look like daring lines, it makes it very simple, if you want to prove the quran being wrong, then voala, just do this, and many think that this is one of the illogical bits to fit a man-made scripture... again, this is another vast sea, a not so scientific one, but it just goes to show what it sounds like when a challenge is made.
    meaning, yes, the dark seas and internal waves were mentioned as natural phenomenon for readers to wonder about, and were not directed and phrased as scientific miracles, but when someone, says when he sees an ugly donkey "that animal is gross as shit, all 3866940 hairs of it!!".. and that donkey's hairs were counted, many times, and his number was accurate, does it stop his statement being miraculous even though he didn't intend it being so?
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2010
  9. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

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    Where is there a wave on top of a wave in the Ocean? They are not on different levels, but rather superimposed. A submarine need only dive a hundred feet or so and they feel no waves. Anyone looking from shore can see the waves and the darkness of the Ocean, therefore no modern scientific instruments were required to write the passage in question. Even if Mohammed didn't see the sea himself, no modern scientific instruments were required for him to hear about these elementary qualities. You need to show something specific and precise, otherwise it's just vague metaphor. You are so far failing to show anything precise.

    Your assertion that no one can write a passage similiar to the Quran is also false. I give you, the Urantia Book, and The Book of Mormon. Those also imitate the style of the Bible, and have influenced many people.

    I suggest Mohammed was talking about tsunamis, which are internal waves, and were familiar to the people of the time, at least in legend. No special scientific device is necessary to witness one.

    Edit: I have since discovered that even the internal waves you talk about can be visible from the surface!

    Internal waves are disturbances that occur at the boundary between two water masses of different density. The wave heights can be quite large, sometimes exceeding 100 meters (330 feet) and may be formed by tidal movement, turbidity currents, wind stress, or passing ships. The surface expression of the waves is minimal, but if the crests approach the surface they affect the reflection of light from the water.


    Therefore this is something that could have been known at the time from simple observation.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2010
  10. scifes heckle the snobs Valued Senior Member

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    2,561
    I have answered your explanations of the passage alternative to the ones known which clearly describe happenings known today as scientific facts, your interpretations ranged from literally flourish to other "possible" prepositions to different daylight conditions… I have answered them all in detail and while always starting from available sources, some of which provided by you.
    I have also shown the EXTREME improbability that such information imbedded in the description of the passage could be known naturally in one case, and the impossibility in the other, and have explored your proposed mechanisms with extensive detail, ranging from secchi disks to fishermen and pearl hunters ending with the normal boat traveler.
    Your latest post have repeated answered arguments, started irrelevant ones, and made one helluva claim based on an obscure, unreferenced, minimally detailed passage which in no way whatsoever hints at, let alone support, let alone prove your assertion. The debate in the discussion thread has also reached a sad level of consistency and rationale, especially with micheal joining and 786 actually caring to reply to him. 786 has my thanks for replying to many arguments there in a professional manner, I don't know how to comment on those argument which have reappeared in this thread.
    Considering the sheer level of desperateness I sense, and considering that this topic's aspects with debating potential have been exhausted, and the vastness of similar titles that match this debate's criteria, I will give a new verse to start munching on, albeit this new one being more solid than the last one, I still have hope for the debate to avoid the downsides of the previous(ongoing) one, a small part of me is begging for excitement… and what could be more exciting than being thrown off balance with a blow from a solid argument to crack up my own?
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    Different seas with different characteristics meet at certain points, did you know that they keep their distinctive traits, and that for water from the first sea to pass to the other sea, it won't do so until it passes through the "barrier" between them and becomes homogeneous with the second sea's waters?
     
  11. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    51,923
    I suggest your arguments have been an elaborate version of a strawman.

    You have shown the improbability of one possible interpretation of the text. But I have suggested quite a number of alternative explanations that are perfectly plausible and far less unlikely. I have additionally shown that your interpretation of the text (of the waves being the waves found between deep ocean boundry layers) can also be seen with the naked eye from the surface, thus defeating all of your arguments.

    I cannot respond to your new argument until you show me the new verse you are talking about.
     
  12. scifes heckle the snobs Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,561
    soooo sorry for being late, i usually mess around reading and researching the first two days and then post in the third(preferrably the lat hours of it

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    ), and yesterday i had serious internet problems i don't think will be resolved anytime soon..

    so, the verses:

    "He has set free the two seas meeting together. There is a barrier between them. They do not transgress." (Quran, 55:19-20)

    and another one,bit different[?]:

    “It is He Who has mixed up (maraja) the two seas, this (one) very fresh [river], and this (other one) very salt, and has made between them a barrier and a forbidding partition.” (Quran 25: 53)

    as for the previous discussion, guess i'll conclude my point in my last post.

    thanks.

    p.s: some links:
    http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20090720181453AAPQNnD
    http://55a.net/eng/6.htm (second verse)
    http://www.quranandscience.com/earth/177-the-barrier-between-rivers-and-seas-estuary.html (first verse)
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2010
  13. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    51,923
    Of course there are barriers between seas. If there weren't they would be called the same sea.

    With respect to salinity, there are zones of mixing, we call them estuaries. I used to live near one called the Chesapeake Bay. Although far from the ocean, the water was salty.
     
  14. scifes heckle the snobs Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,561
    ok, so i read this page here, and was astonished, beyond what any words can describe; at the level of the text i went through, here i thought i was giving the topic i'm debating an adequate -if not proper- representation, i thought i was doing the right amount of research and spending a fair amount of thought and time on what i write... i was to some degree satisfied with my performance, but reading through that page, the sheer amount of references dissected, the sheer magnitude of the thought trails identified and explored, the simple variety and diversity of languages, historical and time eras, subjects and fields the references which the writer considered and researched, they just simply, in a single blink, made me realize how far away i am from the level i thought i'm at, how a true consideration of an argument is carried out, it was just epic, something unlike i've ever seen in my life.. it just, showed me i don't yet have what it takes to properly undertake this kind of stuff, that i don't even barely have the prerequisites for true representation of the side i stand for.
    - i still think i can take you on this subject, but i'm forefitting because:
    1-i've just known my level of performance is not even slightly indicative of the true level of my side of the debate.
    2-i feel kind of assured and unbothered, to be reminded that people with such passion to seek the truth, strong enough to produce such magnificent text, are still adhering to the side i am, even at this present age, truly unrivaled or even comparable to those i've read from the opposite side, the difference is just like, the ground and the sky..


    i may however pursue the subject in the discussion thread,... i just don't feel like continuing it here:shrug:

    p.s. this thread has been sitting in my thread reply box for ages now, and i just didn't get over my ass to add the last few lines and re-read it all till i saw that spider has declared himself the winner in the discussion thread, well i can't deny him that, being horribly late for routine appointments is something i can't help myself in, especially for lectures, and we did agree that whoever doesn't reply in three days loses, spider has allowed me extra time on more than one occasion, which he has my thanks for, and my congrats for "officially" winning this thread

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    it's been fun, and a great experience, hope i've benefited you too one way or another

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    Last edited: Mar 15, 2010
  15. spidergoat Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    51,923
    Thank you for conceding defeat. It was fun debating here in the debate thread without any distractions from other members. I think you tried your best to defend the indefensible. Don't be disappointed that you are not as good as creating the appearance of researched scholarship as some other websites you have seen. This is not a virtue. I find Islamic apologetics with regard to science found in the Quran to be intellectually dishonest, and their research to be nothing more than elaborate justifications for their own predetermined beliefs. Nothing can be found in the Quran that represents a level of knowledge that could not have been known at the time.

    In the course of research for this debate, I have read passages from the Quran, and found many of them to be admirable in morality and philosophy. Mohammed must have been an ambitious and learned scholar. If he had been just a glorified stenographer, dictating the words from God with no thought of his own, so much less should we think of him. People that try to develop a set of written values and instructions for society probably have the best of intentions, but to paraphrase the probably fictional character of Lao Tzu, laws that are written can be all the more easily broken. The creation of holy books is probably misguided, or at least we are misguided if we consider them too holy, and ignore the wisdom that can only come from within.

    Thank you, scifes, perhaps we can try this again sometime.
     
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