The Qur'an and Human Anatomy

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Taken as a whole, the verses of the Qur'an can be understood to evince a peculiar understanding of the human body, in line with the thought of the ancient Mediterranean world in the 7th century.

The Qur'an describes the creation of humans by stating that the human body is created from clay (i.e. water and soil).

The Qur'an teaches that the first step in the creation of the human body is coming together of the elements comprising the human body. According to the Qur'an these are the elements of earth, that is to say clay.

The second stage in the creation of humans as described in the Qur'an is the Nutfah.

After the above stage comes the Alaqa stage.

Qur'an Surahs

The Qur'an is a document which was put down to paper in the 7th century, with material that may be as old as the 6th century AD. As such it evinces an understanding of science and human biology grounded in the thought of the time, which was a combination of received knowledge and the psuedo-scientific findings of Greek philosophy/science, with some practitioners of this being more empirical in their investigations. The Qur'an thus buys into the Greek four-element model of nature as well as various Greek theories of biology which were not arrived at through the scientific method and vigorous empirical investigation.

Al-E-Imran

  • Verily, the likeness of 'Īsā (Jesus) before Allâh is the likeness of Adam. He created him from dust, then (He) said to him: "Be!" - and he was. (59)

Al-Anaam

  • He it is who created you from clay, and then decreed a stated term (for you). And there is in His presence another determined term; yet ye doubt within yourselves!. (2)

Al-Araf

  • It is We who created you and gave you shape; then We bade the angels prostrate to Adam, and they prostrated, not so Iblis; he refused to be of those who bow down. (11)
  • (Allah) said: "what prevented thee from bowing down when I commanded thee?" He said: "I am better than he: thou didst create me from fire, and him from clay." (12)

Al-Hijr

  • And indeed, We created man from dried (sounding) clay of altered mud. (26)
  • And the jinn, We created aforetime from the smokeless flame of fire. (27)
  • And (remember) when your Lord said to the angels: "I am going to create a man (Adam) from dried (sounding) clay of altered mud. (28)
  • "So, when I have fashioned him completely and breathed into him (Adam) the soul which I created for him, then fall (you) down prostrating yourselves unto him." (29)
  • So, the angels prostrated themselves, all of them together. (30)
  • Except Iblîs (Satan), - he refused to be among the prostrators. (31)

An-Nahl

Al-Isra

  • Behold! We said to the angels: "Bow down unto Adam": they bowed down except Iblis: he said "Shall I bow down to one whom Thou didst create from clay?" (61)

Al-Mumenoon

  • And indeed We created man (Adam) out of an extract of clay (water and earth). (12)
  • Thereafter We made him (the offspring of Adam) as a Nutfah (mixed drops of the male and female sexual discharge and lodged it) in a safe lodging (womb of the woman). (13)
  • Then We made the Nutfah into a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood), then We made the clot into a little lump of flesh, then We made out of that little lump of flesh bones, then We clothed the bones with flesh, and then We brought it forth as another creation. So Blessed is Allâh, the Best of creators.[] (14)
  • After that, surely, you will die. (15)
  • Then (again), surely, you will be resurrected on the Day of Resurrection. (16)

Al-Room

  • And among His Signs is this, that He created you (Adam) from dust, and then [Hawwa' (Eve) from Adam's rib, and then his offspring from the semen, and], - behold you are human beings scattered! (20)
  • And among His Signs is this, that He created for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them, and He has put between you affection and mercy. Verily, in that are indeed signs for a people who reflect. (21)

Al-Ahzab

  • Who made everything He has created good, and He began the creation of man from clay. (7)
  • Then He made his offspring from semen of dispised water (male and female sexual discharge). (8)
  • Then He fashioned him in due proportion, and breathed into him the soul (created by Allâh for that person), and He gave you hearing (ears), sight (eyes) and hearts. Little is the thanks you give! (9)

Fatir

  • And Allah did create you from dust; then from a sperm-drop; then He made you in pairs. And no female conceives, or lays down (her load), but with His knowledge. Nor is a man long-lived granted length of days, nor is a part cut off from his life, but is in a Decree (ordained). All this is easy for Allah. (11)

Ya-Seen

  • Does not man see that We have created him from Nutfah (mixed male and female discharge — semen drops). Yet behold! he (stands forth) as an open opponent. (77)
  • And he puts forth for Us a parable, and forgets his own creation. He says: "Who will give life to these bones after they are rotten and have become dust?" (78)
  • Say: (O Muhammad SAW) "He will give life to them Who created them for the first time! And He is the All-Knower of every creation!" (79)

Sad

  • Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: "I am about to create man from clay: (71)
  • "When I have fashioned him (in due proportion) and breathed into him of My spirit, fall ye down in obeisance unto him." (72) So the angels prostrated themselves, all of them together; (73)
  • Not so Iblis: he was haughty, and became one of those who reject Faith. (74)
  • (Allah) said: "O Iblis! what prevents thee from prostrating thyself to one whom I have created with My hands? Art thou haughty? Or art thou one of the high (and mighty) ones?" (75)
  • (Iblis) said: "I am better than he: Thou createdst me from fire, and him Thou createdst from clay." (76)

Ar-Rahman

Al-Insan

  • Verily, We have created man from Nutfah (drops) of mixed semen (sexual discharge of man and woman), in order to try him, so We made him hearer and seer. (2)

Al-Alaq

References