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what does the Quran say the creation of universe

What Does the Quran Say About the Creation of Universe?

The Quran, the holy book of Islam and the literal word of God (Allah), revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) over 1,400 years ago. Among its many themes, the Quran discusses the creation of the universe and offers profound insights that resonate with both spiritual beliefs and, intriguingly, with modern scientific discoveries. This article delves into the Quranic narrative of the universe’s creation. It also explores the verses on the creation of the universe and the interpretations that bridge faith and science.


The Creation of the Heavens and the Earth

The Quran begins its discourse on creation with a clear and powerful statement in Surah Al-Baqarah:

It is He who created for you all of that which is on the earth. Then He directed Himself to the heaven, and made them seven heavens, and He is Knowing of all things.” (Quran 2:29)

This verse highlights the divine origin of the earth and the heavens and emphasizes God’s omnipotence and omniscience. The mention of “seven heavens” has been interpreted in various ways, often understood as layers or realms within the universe.


The Big Bang and Cosmic Expansion

One of the most compelling aspects of the Quran’s creation narrative is its alignment with modern cosmological theories. Surah Al-Anbiya states:

Have those who disbelieved not considered that the heavens and the earth were a joined entity, and We separated them and made from water every living thing? Then will they not believe?” (Quran 21:30)

This verse bears a striking resemblance to the Big Bang theory, which posits that the universe began as a singularity and expanded over billions of years. The notion of the heavens and the earth being a “joined entity” before their separation aligns with the idea of a unified origin of the cosmos.

Furthermore, the Quran touches upon the ongoing expansion of the universe in Surah Adh-Dhariyat:

And the heaven We constructed with strength, and indeed, We are [its] expander.” (Quran 51:47)

Modern astrophysics confirms that the universe is still expanding, a discovery attributed to Edwin Hubble in the early 20th century. This Quranic verse, revealed centuries before such scientific discoveries, has fascinated scholars and scientists alike for its remarkable foresight.

You also may want to read: How the Quran is Compatible with Modern Science?


The Process of Creation

The Quran provides a detailed account of the creation process, emphasizing both divine command and gradual development. Surah Fussilat (also known as Ha-Mim Sajda) provides a vivid description:

Say, ‘Do you indeed disbelieve in He who created the earth in two days and attribute to Him equals? That is the Lord of the worlds.’ And He placed on the earth firmly set mountains over its surface, and He blessed it and determined therein its [creatures’] sustenance in four days without distinction – for [the information] of those who ask. Then He directed Himself to the heaven while it was smoke and said to it and to the earth, ‘Come [into being], willingly or by compulsion.’ They said, ‘We have come willingly.’ And He completed them as seven heavens within two days and inspired in each heaven its command. And We adorned the nearest heaven with lamps and as protection. That is the determination of the Exalted in Might, the Knowing.” (Quran 41:9-12)

This passage highlights several key points:

  1. Timeframe and Stages: The creation of the earth and heavens is described as a multi-stage process over specified “days” or periods and suggests a methodical approach.
  2. Mountains and Sustenance: The establishment of mountains and the provision of sustenance reflect a focus on the earth’s habitability and the interdependence of life.
  3. Cosmic Order: The directive given to the heaven while it was in a state of “smoke” (interpreted as a primordial gas or cosmic dust) and the subsequent formation of seven heavens indicate an ordered development of the cosmos.

The Role of Water in Creation

Water is highlighted as a crucial element in the Quranic narrative of creation. As mentioned in Surah Al-Anbiya (21:30), “We made from water every living thing.” This assertion underscores the essential role of water in sustaining life, a concept universally accepted in biology today. The Quran’s emphasis on water’s importance mirrors scientific understanding, where water is considered vital for the emergence and sustenance of life on Earth.


The Creation of Humankind

The Quran also addresses the creation of humankind in detail. It illustrates both physical and spiritual aspects. Surah Sad states:

When your Lord said to the angels, ‘I am creating a human being from clay. So when I have proportioned him and breathed into him of My [created] soul, then fall down to him in prostration.’” (Quran 38:71-72)

This verse describes the creation of the first human, Adam, from clay, and the divine breath that endowed him with a soul. This duality of material and spiritual creation highlights the unique status of humans in the Quranic worldview.


Reflections on Modern Science

The Quranic descriptions of the creation of the universe have often been a source of reflection and inspiration for Muslim scholars and scientists. The apparent harmony between some Quranic verses and modern scientific theories, such as the Big Bang and the expanding universe, has led to a renewed interest in the relationship between faith and science.

While it is essential to approach these interpretations with caution, avoiding oversimplification or forced concordance, the Quran’s insights offer a profound framework for contemplating the universe’s origins. The text’s poetic and metaphorical language allows for multiple layers of understanding, enriching both spiritual and intellectual pursuits.



The Quran’s narrative of the creation of the universe is rich with detail, symbolism, and profound insights. It speaks to the majesty and power of God as the Creator, the ordered and purposeful nature of the cosmos, and the intricate interconnections of all living things. For believers, these verses provide a source of awe and inspiration. It encourages a deeper appreciation of the universe and its Creator.

Through its timeless wisdom, the Quran continues to inspire exploration and understanding. It invites humanity to reflect on the origins of existence and our place within the grand tapestry of creation. Whether viewed through the lens of faith or science, the Quranic account of the universe’s creation remains a testament to the enduring quest for knowledge and the divine mysteries that underpin our reality.


Hafiz Ikram Ullah

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