Mountains are like pegs, which Allah has thrown or dropped upon the earth to act as stabilizers so as to prevent it from shaking...

 It doesn’t take long for an objective reader of the Quran to notice that the entire book is littered with repetitions and contradictions. Ali Ibn Abu Talib, the fourth Caliph, once described the Quran as a multi-faced (حمال أوجه) book, because it can be interpreted in many different ways.[1]

Ali’s judgement is of exceptional significance, because it came from a pious Muslim with undisputed fluency in Arabic. Ali is generally considered as the most ‘intellectual’ of Muhammad’s companions. Muhammad also made a similar confession, in the Quran itself, when it was pointed out to him that some of his later verses were contradicting verses revealed in earlier years.[2]

However, the Quran still describes itself as the clear book in a number of verses,[3] and I must say that there are occasions when the Quran lives up to that description. Such unusual clarity in the book, where the general theme is ambiguity, exists in some of the so-called ‘scientific verses’. When Muhammad expressed his scientific knowledge in the Quran, he often did so using a clear and simple language that was comprehensible to his followers. There are no records at all that the Arabs ever asked for clarification of any of the so-called ‘scientific verses’ of the Quran. Equally true, there are no records at all that the Arabs ever expressed their disapproval of any of those verses. We can safely draw two conclusions from the above historical evidence:

  • First, those verses were clear enough that all the Arabs understood them well. There can be no excuse whatsoever for today’s Muslim scholars to twist the language to invent more acceptable meanings.
  • Second, the Arabs accepted the information contained in those verses as common knowledge with nothing new in them. That is why they didn’t ask questions or express their disapproval.

This discussion indicates that the scientific aspect of the Quran was in total agreement with the prevailing scientific knowledge in the seventh-century Arabia.

The Quranic cosmology

According to the Quran, the earth and mountains are two separate entities, just like the earth and sky are. The Quran asserts that mountains did not originate from the earth, but were brought from ‘outside’, and then erected on the earth to fix it so as to stop it from swaying!

The creation and structure of the universe are repeatedly described in the Quran in simple language that is easy to understand, and is difficult to twist, even by Muslim scholars, who twist anything. Unlike the Greeks, the seventh-century Arabs were far behind in science and discoveries; their knowledge was mainly based on myths that reached them through the hundreds of religions practiced in Arabia. Ancient mythologies of Mesopotamia, India and Persia were also echoed in Arabia. The Arabs, like many other nations at the time, believed that the world was a massive flat land that was attached to the sky until separated by a god. They believed that it was Allah, their moon-god, who did the separation. The Quran confirms this myth in verse 21:30: “Do not the unbelievers see that the skies and earth were stitched (retkan, رتقا) together, and then we separated them...” The wording of the verse suggests that the Quran was referring to already known information. When somebody says to a group of people “don’t you see that the doors are painted red?” we understand that the group already know the doors are painted red, and that the speaker only reminded them with a fact they all agree about.

Verse 21:30 is crucial in Islamic science, because it is, for the Quranic miracle-hunters, is the basis of the so-called ‘Islamic big bang theory’, which is anyway vastly different from the real ‘Big Bang’ theory. As per this verse, the Islamic theory describes an already formed earth that was attached to an already formed sky until both were separated by Allah. That belief is in sharp contrast to the real Big Bang theory, which discusses the birth of the universe before the existence of the earth or the sky. I am afraid that in verse 21:30, the Quran only repeats the old pagan myths, already in circulation in Arabia, i.e. separating the sky from the earth and raising it high up!

To make sure that the ‘Islamic cosmology’ never meets with the infidels’ cosmology, the Quran goes into further detail, and describes the sky, which is only emptiness in the real world, as a solid structure that was raised high up by the almighty Allah, and He keeps it in place using a system of invisible pillars. “Q.13:2 Allah is He who raised the skies without any pillars that you can see”. To make sure that everybody gets the message clearly, the Quran reminds its readers that the sky would fall down on earth if it were not to Allah’s mercy. “(Q.22:65) ...He withholds the sky from falling on the earth except by His permission for Allah is most kind...”

Those invisible pillars, described in verse 13:2, must be resting on the earth, which implies that the earth must be flat. In case some people did not get the point, the Quran went on to describe the earth as ‘flat’ using all the words in the Arabic language that can possibly mean ‘flat’, and still Muslims don’t get it!

The author of the Quran likened the earth to a carpet (Q 71:19-20: 'And Allah has made the earth for you as a carpet (bisata) (spread out), That ye may go about therein, in spacious roads.') that, when used in the open, requires some stones or pegs to secure it against the blowing desert wind. Similarly, the flat earth, which was thought to be floating on water, also required some mechanism to stabilize it. The problem of the earth’s instability was fixed by erecting massive pegs, called mountains, which Allah dropped on its surface and erected نصبت to function as stabilizers. Therefore, the mountains were not  a part of the earth!

The Quranic geology

mountains are like pegs on earth thrown from above
Mountains are pegs, which Allah threw
on the earth from above as stabilizers

The Quran doesn’t agree with the established knowledge that the mountains are integral parts of the earth that were formed as a result of tectonic forces and have no role at all on the earth’s stability.  Instead, the Quran declares that the mountains were extraterrestrial objects that were added to the earth, after its creation, to stop its imaginary swaying movement.

In verses 88:18-20, the Quran calls people to think of three of Allah’s major creations; the sky, the mountains and the earth. Sura 88 is clear evidence that the Quran considers the three creations as separate structures. Read this: “Q 88:18-20 And at the sky, how it is raised? And at the mountains, how they are erected? And at the earth, how it is spread out?” It is disgraceful that the writer of the Quran, who obviously knew nothing about the nature of those structures, could claim to have created them. It is like a person, who knows nothing about computers, but still claims to have invented them!

Verse 19:90 claims that even the skies, the earth and the mountains are full of rage, because some people (i.e. Christians) claim that Allah had a son. The Quran describes the ‘feelings’ of those three structures, and doesn’t miss the opportunity to confirm the author’s ignorance about the nature of those creations: “At it the skies are about to crack, the earth about to split, and the mountains about to fall and crumble.”

Below are more verses claiming that mountains are different from the earth:

Q.13:31 “If there were a Qur'an with which mountains were moved, or the earth cut into pieces...”

Q.18:47: “And the day when we shall cause the mountains to pass away, and you see the earth prominent...”

Verses 56:4-5 and 73:14 describe what will happen to the earth and the mountains on the Last Day; the earth will be shaken while the mountains will crumble. The different treatment received by each creation is an indication that both were different entities in the mind of whoever wrote the Quran:

Q 56:4-6. “... the earth shall be shaken,  and the mountains shall be crumbled”

Q. 73: 14. “One day the earth and the mountains will shake, and the mountains will be as a heap of flowing sand”

It is impossible to justify the blunders in the above-mentioned verses for sane people, but Muslim scholars would come up with something, and claim that those verses contain no errors, but miracles! They would use the tactics of twisting the language to claim that Allah didn’t mean what he said.

Well, it seems that Allah did mean what he said, because verse 15:19 tells us how the mountains came to the flat earth: Q.15:19And the earth we have spread out; and thrown thereon mountains...” Mountains were, therefore, dropped from high upon the earth after its creation.

Verse 16:15 goes even further, and explains that Allah decided to drop down mountains upon the earth so as to stop it from shaking: “And He has thrown down mountains on the earth, lest it should shake with you...”

In case somebody did not hear well, the Quran repeats the same information with the same consistency in following verses:

31:10. “He created the skies without any pillars that you can see; He’s thrown down on the Earth Mountains, lest it should shake with you...”

50:7. “And the earth- We have spread it out, and thrown down thereon mountains...”

Let us look further into verses 70:8-9:

“And the mountains will be like wool; Then when the stars become dim.”

These two verses describe what will happen to mountains and sky on the Last Day, speaking about them a similar way. However, the scientific consistency, which we praised in the beginning of the article, seems to have broken, but we cannot expect the Quran to avoid contradictions every time. The sky, according to verse 70:8, will become like molten brass, but the mountains, which were supposed to crumble in verse 56:5, will now become like cotton wool!

mountains are pegs below earthIt is an extraordinary irony that Muslims read the Quran, but do not notice any of these colossus errors. They read the appalling blunders, like the sky is a solid structure or a roof (Q 21:32) that has the potential to fall down on the earth, without noticing anything wrong in them. Their brains have become numb and insensitive to all these errors. Nonetheless, they have seized the word ‘awtad’ (pegs), which the Quran once used, referring to mountains (Q 78:7). When they learned that some mountains have deep roots underground, they quickly remembered the word ‘awtad’, because the pegs are also partly underground. Thousands of articles and books have been published about this ‘scientific miracle’ of the Quran. Radio and television programmes and scientific conferences have been organised to celebrate the discovery. Yet, no Muslim scholar ever noticed that the Quran also referred to the Pharaohs’ pyramids (mountain-shaped) as ‘awtad’, not once but twice (Q 38:12, 89:10).

In the past, Muslim scholars had no problems in interpreting above-discussed verses or any other verses in the Quran. They only had to provide a simple and straight forward explanation of the language without any external pressures. It was only in the last century when they realised that the Quran, which they long claimed to be the perfect book, was actually at odds with proven scientific knowledge. And to pre-empt any criticism to the Quran on this ground, Muslim scholars adopted the strategy that ‘attack is the best defence’. By focusing on the ‘miracles’ of the word ‘awtad’, they succeeded in diverting attention of Muslims and maintaining the standing of the Quran; rather than talking about Quranic errors, they now talk about its scientific miracles!

During my preparation of this article, I looked at the available English translations of these verses, and noticed deliberate deception. I wasn’t surprised; this observation has become a regular pattern whenever I look at the English translations of the Quran. For example, in above-mentioned verses, which says the mountains were thrown or dropped upon the earth, Muslim scholars deceived the readers by translating the Arabic word ‘alka’ ألقى  as ‘placed’ or ‘erected’ (the mountains), when its true meaning is ‘threw’ or ‘dropped’ (the mountains), to conceal the obvious error.

An example of extreme deception is the translation of verses (73: 14) quoted above, which reads like this: One day the earth and the mountains will shake, and the mountains will be as a heap of sand”, but some Muslim scholars translated it like this: “The day is coming when the masses and the wealthy tyrants will shake and the leaders will be as a heap of sand”![4]

Is there a point in debating Muslims when they are so determined to lie?

[1] A famous statement by Caliph Ali  حمال أوجه  ألقرآن  “The Quran is a multi faced book” which means it lends itself to multiple interpretations.
[2] Quran 3:7
[3] 12:1 “these are the Verses of the Clear Book…”, 26:2  “these are the Verses of the Clear Book…”, 28:2 “these are the Verses of the Clear Book…”
[4] Translation by ‘OXP’ seen on

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