# Discussion:Quran detailing stuff impossible to know without modern scientific gear

Ever heard of a freak wave? That's what happens when two separate waves combine and the peaks are added.

That just means they become one wave- hardly would anyone call that one wave is on top of another- Show a combined water wave to someone and ask him how many waves are there- and I will bet the answer is one- and supposedly this 'freak wave' detail is known to Muhammad not just that oceans have waves? Not to mention no one would see 'layers' of this since the peaks would have combined. I mean they're not working with mathematical graphs of waves in front of them from which they can detect the different 'waves' there- Water waves that combine would look like 1 wave and wouldn't be called on top of another wave not to mention in layers (and depth would still be a useless here)-

Do you have evidence that they recognized the phenomenon of 'freak waves' and that they held them to be more than 1 wave- but in layers.. I would be interested to know personally- because if someone asked me I would still call it one wave- by the way 'freak waves' are even more 'detailed' information then I would expect someone from a desert to know-

Here is a pic I got from yahoo of a freak wave which is clear: http://inlinethumb24.webshots.com/41815/2266391600103830173S600x600Q85.jpg

I only see one wave- frankly- even if it is a mix of 'many waves'-

Now I'm reading 'wiki'- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freak_wave#History

Causes of them- still under research it seems- But if those waves combine- what you see is only 1 wave- not layers- even I know how to combine waves on paper- they may be 2 waves in paper- but when you see it- it is only 1 wave- not a layer of waves on top each other.

Somewhere encounter of this wave and his statement: http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon/2002/freakwave.shtml

"Out of nowhere... a wave twice as high as average. The ship went down like freefall" - you see it in one of the boxes where they give 'highlights'

This is exactly how I would describe it- 'a wave'- one huge wave. I wonder if they noted that there were layers of waves? I certainly wouldn't. I'm more than happy to accept this if you want because this is even more detail then waves under waves.... Because now you're saying he knew that a single wave was made up of a collection of waves which were all in layer- not to mention this still wouldn't explain depths- I still see my own simple face value approach to be more appealing/consistent/fully utilizes the passage/logical even though this 'freak wave' thing gives much more level of scientific information then anyone would know certainly even I wouldn't give such a description to something which appears to be one wave. But if this is what you see being mentioned then kudos to you; now just show how this would be known.

Peace be unto you

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iceaura,

Those were really, truly, good references and made the point AGAIN explicitly. Thanks for taking the time and looking them up. I would have looked around but I'm just really busy presently.

But it doesn't matter. There is NOTHING, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, you can say that will change a "believer's" mind. Think about it, once a person truly and utterly believes in AND worships, venerates, prays to and seeks comfort from Xenu(mu) or Allah or Smurfs or whatever other magical creature they think is "real:, it's a done deal. They are not interested in "making sense". They gave up on making sense a LONG time ago. With the rarest of exceptions, SouthStar and MW being two I can remember in the last 5 years, these people are not able to think logically about their superstition.

Look at the way 786 dissected the poems. Peace by peace. But the same person who will look at you straight in the face and honestly say that a belief in Allah is asinine and silly will turn right around and pray and worship Xenu(mu). Do you honestly expect to make headway with this person? You think you're going to pull logic and reason from someone who prays to Xenu(mu) [or Allah or Santa or Elvis]??? It's an utterly absurd waste of time.

The burden was on scifes to prove that the information in poem couldn't known without modern scientific technology and that hasn't been done. If it were done, then you would be able to take that argument to Nature or Science and publish it. I promise you, that will not be the case.

Lastly, again, the two poems really should have been able to make the case - anyone thinking logically can instantly see the parallels.

O Urvasie swaying soft and sweet,
When thou dancest before the assembly of the gods,
Thrills of delight course through thy limbs,
Waves upon waves swirl rhythmically in the
bosom of the ocean,

The undulating tips of the shivering corn
Appear like the fluttering skirt of mother earth.
From the necklace hung upon thy breast
Drop down the stars on the floor of the sky.
And all at once man loses his masculine heart
in sheer rapture.

Look at the way 786 dissected the poems. Peace by peace.

Thank you for the complement... 'Piece by piece' indeed did I respond to that very elegent poem.

Lastly, again, the two poems really should have been able to make the case - anyone thinking logically can instantly see the parallels.

Well if they were thinking logically they would logically understand the rather huge difference between the descriptions- and if they were thinking logically they would realize how illogical it is to assume that the description was about the depth of the ocean. Not that you would understand.

Peace be unto you

Logical thinking will always be scarified on the alter of fear. That's why our species survived. Any human that stops to contemplate a big lion chasing him/her is more than likely going to be eaten by said big lion. Because I don't fear Gods (or Aliens), 786, I can clearly see that the three poems are equal in regards to any scientific "miracles" of prediction they make. However, we can't expect someone who seriously worries a God will send him/her to burn in a lake of eternal fire for eternity, to think as clearly. Not anymore than a person being run down by a lion can think of anything other than survival.

If you think you have made a truly valid scientific argument, then write it up here, send it to Nature, publish the results and show the whole world your "scientific miracle". But, we know that's not going to happen don't we. And not because of some "scientist conspiracy" but because there is no miracle. Nothing. Just a poem and a person who desperately wants to believe in God so they don't have to fear death. You're capable of logically thinking about the poem from Zeus (pbuh) and His Prophet (pbuh) because you're not afraid of Zeus. Something you're not capable of doing when it comes to the Qur'an.

It really is that simple.

Which is why it's a waste of time to try to get you to. No more than you could get a person being chased by a lion to think coherently about a poem. It's simply not going to happen. Not that it couldn't happen, but that it's not going to happen.

It really is that simple.

That you like to troll? If my reasoning is so illogical and 'incoherent' perhaps you can refute what I stated about the poem rather than waste time making statements? It should be a very easy task for someone who can read poems 'coherently' (you?). If not, don't waste my time and neither waste this forum space which is not for trolling.

Peace be unto you

The concept of the freak wave is only an illustration of something every sailor would know, that waves can come from more than one direction at once. When they combine, the amplitude can add or subtract, and they continue on their way as if nothing happened. So, this is a plausible explanation for waves on top of waves. When the waves only come from one direction, sailing is easy, the waves are predictable. When the waves come from more than one direction, as when they bounce off a rocky coast and are reflected, the seas become chaotic. Waves on top of waves refers to a chaotic, disordered sea. Don't tell me they couldn't know this, Arabs were some of the best sailors in the world at that time.

786 said:
All I'm concerned about is the layering of waves.
There is no layering of waves - not in the English Quran, not in Tagore's poem, not in the paen to the Torah I quoted - probably no one has ever used "waves upon waves" in English to refer to physical layering of the kind you invoke. "Trees upon trees", "miles upon miles", "days upon days", etc (probably the most common use of the idiom), do not refer to layers of these things.
786 said:
If you can support the claim that there is no layering mentioned, you are more than welcome to quote the verse right here-
In your quote of the verse, the word "layer" does not appear, nor are such layers as you introduce described in any way that I see. You added a very creative interpretation, that no one ever thought of until they had a scientific discovery to match up with somehow.
786 said:
So by saying 'swirl' that provides much more detail about waves? Isn't that an inherent property of ocean waves-
It provides a detail more readily evocative of the kinds of behavior common to "internal waves" in the ocean - likewise "bosom". Tagore is really much closer to describing those waves than the Quran is - would you accept his description as foreshadowing the scientific discovery?
786 said:
the verse continues to talk about layers of darkness one above another.
No it doesn't. Not as quoted here anyway.
786 said:
And can you please even provide evidence for 'superimposed' waves? I've never seen a superimposed wave when I look at the ocean.
I've seen "waves upon waves" in lakes and oceans quite often, in strong winds. They fall on each other, break into each other, turn into each other, etc.They come one after another in an endlless and constantly interacting series. Large bodies of water can be very rough - waves upon waves is a perfectly reasonable and accurately evocative description of what I and millions of others have seen many times while looking out from a boat.

Another very good explanation spirdergoat.

So, are we all in agreement that the poem in question does not contain any information that could have been deduced and understood by people at that point in history?

The concept of the freak wave is only an illustration of something every sailor would know, that waves can come from more than one direction at once. When they combine, the amplitude can add or subtract, and they continue on their way as if nothing happened. So, this is a plausible explanation for waves on top of waves. When the waves only come from one direction, sailing is easy, the waves are predictable. When the waves come from more than one direction, as when they bounce off a rocky coast and are reflected, the seas become chaotic. Waves on top of waves refers to a chaotic, disordered sea. Don't tell me they couldn't know this, Arabs were some of the best sailors in the world at that time.

You haven't showed that 1 combined wave would be described as 'many waves'- or layers of darkness one above another. You're saying that these sailor would see these waves 'combining' which formed higher amplitudes... I'm unaware ancient people knowing that waves can combine, perhaps you can provide evidence?

Do you believe they understood those waves to be 'combining'? If they did consider them combined- did they consider them layered waves or just a single wave? Again instead of throwing out statements please provide evidence of all this. Because I'm not interested in knowing how well you understand waves but how well the ancient people understood them.

Peace be unto you

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I can provide you a wikipedia quote, how about that?

Apart from the Nile, Tigris and Euphrates, navigable rivers in the Islamic regions were uncommon, so transport by sea was very important. Islamic geography and navigational sciences were highly developed, making use of a magnetic compass and a rudimentary instrument known as a kamal, used for celestial navigation and for measuring the altitudes and latitudes of the stars. When combined with detailed maps of the period, sailors were able to sail across oceans rather than skirt along the coast. According to the political scientist Hobson, the origins of the caravel ship, used for long-distance travel by the Spanish and Portuguese since the 15th century, date back to the qarib used by Andalusian explorers by the 13th century.[3]​

I believe this illustrates that the Arab mariners were quite sophisticated. I have a basic knowledge of sailing, and the pattern of currents and waves I describe is elementary to the craft. Waves alone aren't difficult to deal with, you point the boat in the correct direction, and it can deal with it. But it becomes a problem with waves start coming from another direction in addition. Then you can't predict which way is the best direction to travel. Waves can unpredictably combine to form sneaker waves with twice the amplitude, or deep troughs.

"Trees upon trees", "miles upon miles", "days upon days", etc (probably the most common use of the idiom), do not refer to layers of these things.

What if it was 'trees above trees', 'miles above miles'- this doesn't even make sense as the expression breaks down...

Here you go, I'm quoting the same verses I quoted in the beginning of my discussion:

024.040
YUSUFALI: 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!

PICKTHAL: 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.

SHAKIR: Or like utter darkness in the deep sea: there covers it a wave above which is another wave, above which is a cloud, (layers of) utter darkness one above another; when he holds out his hand, he is almost unable to see it; and to whomsoever Allah does not give light, he has no light.

In your quote of the verse, the word "layer" does not appear, nor are such layers as you introduce described in any way that I see.

Well the word 'layer' is there... its talking about darkness- but you are going to tell me that this summation has nothing to do with the things it was mentioning before? (I know it makes it much more coherent that way?)

Happens to be none of them say 'waves upon waves' (which is what spidergoat chose to use, I was simply asking him question regarding that and how that interpretation would fit in with the rest of the passage, especially how clouds would be seemingly on top of them without breaking up the continuous method of the verse-)

So you see waves crashing on top of each other- do you see clouds crashing on top of them every time? Right we just have to separate the clouds as something separate- why? Because you can ??? right? Or should I cite the parsimony rule so that it is indeed waves on top of waves which are further topped by clouds- so that there is no reason to separate them- parsimony is better right?

It provides a detail more readily evocative of the kinds of behavior common to "internal waves" in the ocean - likewise "bosom". Tagore is really much closer to describing those waves than the Quran is - would you accept his description as foreshadowing the scientific discovery?

Quite interesting that you fail to refute any of the criticism I posed... or did that not show up on your screen?

No it doesn't. Not as quoted here anyway.

Look again ?

Peace be unto you

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I can provide you a wikipedia quote, how about that?

Right. but no evidence? Anyways lets look at the quote you provide

Apart from the Nile, Tigris and Euphrates, navigable rivers in the Islamic regions were uncommon, so transport by sea was very important. Islamic geography and navigational sciences were highly developed, making use of a magnetic compass and a rudimentary instrument known as a kamal, used for celestial navigation and for measuring the altitudes and latitudes of the stars. When combined with detailed maps of the period, sailors were able to sail across oceans rather than skirt along the coast. According to the political scientist Hobson, the origins of the caravel ship, used for long-distance travel by the Spanish and Portuguese since the 15th century, date back to the qarib used by Andalusian explorers by the 13th century.[3]​

So they were good with navigation because of their compass an stuff.... nothing really about oceanography I would think. Anyways lets continue with your further 'supportive claims'.

I believe this illustrates that the Arab mariners were quite sophisticated.I have a basic knowledge of sailing, and the pattern of currents and waves I describe is elementary to the craft. Waves alone aren't difficult to deal with, you point the boat in the correct direction, and it can deal with it. But it becomes a problem with waves start coming from another direction in addition. Then you can't predict which way is the best direction to travel. Waves can unpredictably combine to form sneaker waves with twice the amplitude, or deep troughs.

You are correct, waves aren't difficult to deal with- also you are correct they probably had basic 'sailing' knowledge- which I would think is probably more related to wind... Since waves aren't difficult to deal with who the hell would spend hours keeping track of 2 waves to see if they combine or not to determine their way of navigation?

And you are also correct that it becomes a problem when 'waves start coming from another direction'--- but then do you sit down with your binoculars to see where the 'waves are combining'? I think you get your planks and start using your arms to get going in the direction you want... I would like to know if even a basic fisherman sits down on the deck, and starts looking at if the waves are combining in to one- I think he would see the directions- not to mention when you're in a ocean there are so many waves that it would be hard to take a note and see them actually combining- but you can simply look at the ocean waves without really concentrating on their combination and still note the various currents- And not to mention that an explanation is required that this weird practice of 'sit down and watch wave combining' would be the thing that reaches Muhammad and not the general and most obvious stuff about sailing.

I will ask a sailor if they sit down and start looking at if waves are combining even now. And I can almost bet they don't. They are more worried about currents and wind directions- The simplest way of noting the current is to look at the general flow of the waves- not sit down and concentrate on two waves and see if they are combining or not...

Anyways no one would consider this evidence for what I was asking. How many sailors look at waves combining to figure out their navigation paths even today- or dad's going fishing- I mean come on. The wikipedia quote shows navigational skills based on geography, maps, and compass type tools- not sitting down to see wave combination.

Peace be unto you

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Another very good explanation spirdergoat.

Are you a cheerleader?

Peace be unto you

786 said:
Quite interesting that you fail to refute any of the criticism I posed.
? No point. They don't bear on the matter at hand.

Apparently, you can find translations and viewpoints from which you can infer an agreement of that verse with an unrelated scientific discovery made centuries later.

To which I respond: look at the OP. Nothing in that verse (any of those translations) is beyond what anyone looking out over a storm-tossed ocean sees, or what any of dozens of poets and writers and storytellers have depicted.

Finding other meanings on the basis that the Quran hides such meanings assumes the consequent - and there seems to be no other basis: as is shown by the failure to find them already, without the hints and assumptions.

So what's the argument?

When you write up your "Scientific Miracle" and publish it in Nature - let me know. Until then all I see is you interpreting a poem in an convoluted almost 4th don yoga contortion to pull some meaningless dribble out of your arse and claiming it's "miraculous" scientific foresight and evidence of God.

Which is so silly as to be preposterous.

? No point. They don't bear on the matter at hand.

That it doesn't make sense talking about deep ocean? So what does bear on the matter is if out-of-your-*** you say bosom is actually 'deep' inside- regardless of what the context is saying..... In other words you don't care and that is the only thing that bears on the matter. My friend the context ALWAYS bears on the matter of literature.

Apparently, you can find translations and viewpoints from which you can infer an agreement of that verse with an unrelated scientific discovery made centuries later.

First of all the 3 translations I quoted are the most widely used translations.. especially Yusuf Ali... I wasn't poking around and 'choosing one' - I provided all 3. They would be the ones that anyone would quote you regarding any passage of the Quran, not simply this one.

Hell, why don't you provide us with the translation that you were using? Because now that I go back, the translation scifes quoted and SPIDERGOAT also did not have 'waves upon waves'- that was his own made up thing... I will quote all the translation so far quoted:

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.

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!

Now what Spidergoat Quoted:

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.

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.

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!

Now you go ahead and provide me the translation that said 'waves upon waves' which supposedly was posted here- because you had constantly been saying that what I was saying about 'layers' 'one above another' are not quoted here.... Go ahead please.

To which I respond: look at the OP. Nothing in that verse (any of those translations) is beyond what anyone looking out over a storm-tossed ocean sees, or what any of dozens of poets and writers and storytellers have depicted.

Th continuation to clouds wouldn't make sense, neither would the talk about depths.... But I know you don't care about any of the rest as you demonstrate by your so called response about the poem as 'doesn't bear....

None of you have presented an alternative that actually uses the verse and all information in it... You just say 'stormy ocean'- I broke us the verse piece by piece to show why this doesn't make sense

You say 'crashing waves'- but then you split up the clouds, and neither do you see that 'darkness above darkness' referring to the previously mentioned 'waves, waves, clouds' would put them in layers as clouds are definitely above waves- but NO, you want interpret it so that clouds are separate, the waves are the same, and they are only in layers with clouds one but only one wave-- It is you guys who are doing gymnastics with the words, making up your own interpretation that YOU would like to see.

If you think 'you can' and 'garbage can' - the word 'can' has the same meaning in it- I am appalled... I am amazed that you guys have gone so down low that you even not wish to look at the context.... You create s**t out-of-nowhere to understand a poem just so that you can have it compared to the Quran- I recommend you take a class on literary analysis. While I just took the most obvious meaning that is there- waves above which are waves, above which are clouds- darkness one above another...

Finding other meanings on the basis that the Quran hides such meanings assumes the consequent - and there seems to be no other basis: as is shown by the failure to find them already, without the hints and assumptions.

Assumptions? Interesting to note that I tried to read the Quran so that it just made sense while keeping to the face value- while you created your own interpretation of that poem without even considering if it even had made sense just so you could say 'bosom' is in the bottom somewhere.

Now I have quoted 6 translations- both from spidergoat, scifes, and what I originally quoted (the most widely used translations) and then I'm being accused for finding one which fits my theory?

So what's the argument?

That you have no argument, because you've failed to refute anything... On the other hand you accuse me of interpreting (squeezing?) out of it a meaning that isn't there, yet you haven't shown how so... I've given extensive number of posts with detail why this is the most obvious reading of it... You are unwilling to accept it.. BUT you are willing to say that a poem is talking about deep in the ocean when it says 'bosom'- who the heck is creating meaning from 1 word? It seems to be you, I'm using the context completely and take from that the most obvious meaning..

Peace be unto you

...--- but then do you sit down with your binoculars to see where the 'waves are combining'? I think you get your planks and start using your arms to get going in the direction you want... I would like to know if even a basic fisherman sits down on the deck, and starts looking at if the waves are combining in to one- ...

You don't have to look at anything, you feel it in the movements of your boat, especially when you approach a coast that reflects existing waves, causing a confused pattern.

You don't have to look at anything, you feel it in the movements of your boat, especially when you approach a coast that reflects existing waves, causing a confused pattern.

Okay, so even though they didn't have to look at anything they sat down to see 'waves combining'? Not to mention we don't even have evidence of that they knew waves combined and if it layered... just provide the evidence for this 'superimposed' stuff that you're asserting was even noted/known, and this weird sailing technique of sit and watch waves combine was what Muhammad had heard from somewhere...... I think we're getting a little too far-fetched with this...especially since I don't see sailors do this even today.

Peace be unto you

More to the point, was this something they could not have known at the time? No, absolutely not. I heard about knowledge of currents and waves from (programs about) traditional polynesian sailors who's knowledge has been passed down for thousands of years.

This is common knowledge with sailors today, and they didn't require anything more sophisticated then their senses to be aware of it.

More to the point, was this something they could not have known at the time? No, absolutely not. I heard about knowledge of currents and waves from (programs about) traditional polynesian sailors who's knowledge has been passed down for thousands of years.

This is common knowledge with sailors today, and they didn't require anything more sophisticated then their senses to be aware of it.

So you are not going to provide any evidence if they knew about any waves combining what-so-ever.... Anyone who sees a wave sees only 1 wave- not a layer of them, neither is the combination of waves something that can be seen directly, as the water from the 'second wave' flows into the 'first wave' in a 'fluid' manner from bottom up, this is how the amplitude grows- not to mention again that you have not yet provided any evidence about their knowledge of waves in terms of their combination... neither is there evidence provided that such a detailed event would be described as layers of waves- not to mention that the mention of 'depths' would still not fit this description... Also Muhammad never having seen a sea would say this? Well if he heard it from someone then it must be common knowledge- then you must surely be able to find evidence of people believing that waves combined? From Greeks perhaps? They had much more knowledge of sailing then Arabs anyways- do they have this concept? If this knowledge isn't out there, then the other assumption is that Muhammad made it up- a man who never seen a sea and ocean ends up with such a detailed level of 'wave combination'- which by the way isn't really visible to be 'waves combining' especially not in layers as the 'smaller' wave would be hidden within the big visible wave and thus is NOT VISIBLE... So not only did Muhammad know that they combined but that they remained in layers? Still something that can't be visualized. I wouldn't even dream of there being a wave inside the wave which still has its own property of a distinct wave that I would call it a wave above a wave in a layered fashion- I would still by all means call it one wave, never a layer of them- because layers are not visible- if Muhammad mentioned this- then that would still be information absolutely unknown and invisible to people.... You're running into the same trouble everywhere you go my friend.

So if your arguments are baseless- in terms of evidence then I don't think I need to go on. I have NEVER in my life seen a combination of waves that I could distinguish with my visible eye- if I did see a 'growing wave' it would only be due to the wave having more volume and NOT because I think it combined with another wave- not to mention that the addition happens bottom up in a fluid manner which would can not be distinguished by the visible eye- all you see is fluctuating level of waves- neither would I describe it as one over another in a layered fashion- even a modern man like me, who at least knows the additive properties of waves would not describe what I was seeing as is described in the Quran. And this supposed thing was 'commonly known' to everyone and the story reached to Muhammad as well..... Provide evidence, or stop writing because this Formal Debate forum requires that you provide supporting evidence.

Peace be unto you

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