As learned in the previous chapter, Allah has created each and everything for the benefit of humanity. He has provided all the skills, opportunities, and material to humans so that they could make their life comfortable by making inventions and be grateful to Him. However, instead of being grateful, some people become arrogant/ boastful by saying that whatever they have achieved is because of their knowledge. They do not realize that if there had been no clues and material in the environment, they would not have been able to make inventions. Whatever technology do they hold is because of the favor and guidance from Allah.
Having learnt everything from nature, some humans believe that the technology in their hands is invincible, and it can beat everything. They forget the reality that whatever they have learnt is from nature. They were unable to learn even the simplest skill on their own.
Then Allah sent a raven digging the ground, to show him [Cain, the son of Adam] how to cover his brother’s corpse. He said, “Woe to me! I was unable to be like this raven, and burry my brother’s corpse.” So he became full of regrets (5: 31)
Arrogance makes people think that they can create things like Allah can. They misinterpret the fact that the knowledge they have attained is for guidance, not for competition [with Allah].
…. man oversteps all bounds (.) when he considers himself exempt [or self-sufficient] (96: 6-7)
Those who claim they can make anything with their knowledge and refuse the favors of Allah or deny His existence, Allah asks them some questions:
We have created you, so why do you not believe? Have you seen that which you emit? Is it you who creates it, or are We the Creator? (56: 57-59) [despite having so much knowledge and technology humans still cannot create a single human cell with the help of which they can further their generations]
And have you seen that [seed] which you sow? Is it you who makes it grow, or are We the grower? If We willed, We could make it [dry] debris, and you would remain in wonder. (56: 63-65) [despite having so much knowledge and technology humans cannot generate a single seed with the help of which they could produce their crops and food]
And have you seen the water that you drink? Is it you who brought it down from the clouds, or is it We who bring it down? If We willed, We could make it bitter, so why are you not grateful. (56: 68-70) [despite having so much knowledge and technology humans cannot make an alternative of water]
And have you seen the fire that you ignite? Is it you who produced its tree, or are We the producer? (56: 71-72)
.. were they created out of nothing? Or are they the creators? Or did they create the heavens and the earth? In fact they are not certain. Or do they possess the treasuries of your Rubb? Or are they the controllers? Or do they have a stairway by means of which they listen? Then let their listener produce a clear proof. (52: 35-38)
Or do they know the future, and they are writing it down? (52: 41)
Or have they other deities who have ordained for them a religion to which Allah has not consented? …………. (42: 21) [and all affairs of the universe are running according to their religion/rules?]
So when it [a soul] has reached the throat. As you are looking on. We are near to it than you are, but you do not see. If you are not held to account. Then bring it back, if you are truthful. (56: 83-87) [no knowledge or technology on earth can give life to the dead]
Despite so many developments and inventions, humans have nothing to claim that they have become self-sufficient; they are still dependent upon the favors of Allah. They cannot sustain without any of these. If anything goes missing, they cannot create its alternative. Some things directly seem irrelevant; however, they are linked with those which are essential for the sustenance of life.
And the earth – We have spread it and cast therein firmly set mountains and caused to grow therein [something] of every well-balanced thing. And We have made for you therein means of living and [for] those for whom you are not providers. (15: 19-20)
And We have sent the fertilizing winds and sent down water from the sky and given you drink from it. And you are not its retainers. (15: 22)
And a sign for them is the dead earth. We have brought it to life and brought forth from it grain, and from it they eat. And We placed therein gardens of palm trees and grapevines and caused to burst forth therefrom some springs – that they may eat of His fruit. And their hands have not produced it, so will they not be grateful? (36: 33-35)
Do they not see that We have created for them from what Our hands have made, grazing livestock, and [then] they are their owners? And We have tamed them for them, so some of them they ride, and some of them they eat. And for them therein are [other] benefits and drinks, so will they not be grateful? (36: 71-73)
Those who misunderstand the might of Allah assume their inventions are extraordinary, but, they are as breakable as the web of a spider. Their fragility and inefficacy can easily be seen during earthquakes, storms, tsunamis, floods, and pandemics. Nothing can give absolute protection against any of these disasters.
The likeness of those who take to themselves protectors other than Allah is that of the spider. It builds a house. But the most fragile of houses is the spider’s house. If they only knew. Allah knows what they invoke besides Him. He is the Almighty, the Wise. (29: 41-42)
Humans learned a lot from nature and made innumerable inventions, but no human technology can match even the tiniest creations of Allah. Humans are still unable to produce a creature equivalent to a housefly by using material which is exclusively their own creation. A fly seems worthless, but it has a highly complexed group of natural gadgets. It has three-dimensional cameras in the form of eyes; has an inbuilt navigation system, with the help of which it never gets lost; a recognition and tracking system which detects food; and an efficient powerhouse which processes consumed food and converts it into energy to perform different tasks like catching food and flying. It can recharge itself anytime, anywhere by feeding on food; an organized system to drain biodegradable waste out of its body; a complete aerodynamic flying-system which helps it to fly and land safely; an alarm and a quick-response system which protects it from various dangers; a coordinating-system which coordinates all systems, and to reproduce its several copies without any outside factory. …………………. He made for you mates from among yourselves, and pairs of animals, by means of which He multiplies you. There is nothing like Him………………. (42: 11). And above all, when it completes its lifespan and dies, it decays and decomposes [with the passage of time] under a set process and becomes a part of the soil to which it belonged. And thus, ready for recycling without making/adding any pollution on the land. And if it steals away and consumes the tiniest food particle or a droplet of water, humans are unable to retrieve it in its original form. Such is the human being! Even then he thinks that his inventions are special, and he is invincible. A housefly is one of the worthless creatures of Allah. If it has such highly organized systems then think how marvelous other creatures and the universe is!
O people! A parable is presented, so listen to it: Those you invoke besides Allah will never create a fly, even if they banded together for that purpose. And if the fly steals anything from them, they cannot recover it from it. Weak are the pursuer and the pursued. (22: 73)
Apart from huge creations, even the unique qualities and capabilities of the tiniest natural creatures can outpass the human intellect. A honeybee can make the food [honey] that includes all the substances necessary to sustain a life. Silkworm can make the finest quality of yarn. Glow-worms, fireflies, and some other sea-creatures can emit light without having any battery or a lightbulb. Heating and air-conditioning systems in termite mounds are far superior in terms of equipment and energy consumption to those made by human beings.
Allah does not shy away from making an example of a gnat or something above it. As for those who believe, they know that it is the Truth from their Rubb. But as for those who disbelieve, they say, “What did Allah intend by this example?” He leads astray many thereby, and He guides many thereby; but He misleads thereby only the evildoers/wrongdoers (2: 26)
Despite making so many inventions, there are still numerous natural machines upon which humans are dependent. All human creations go outdated and useless with every new version of the invention. Nothing in nature, however, goes outdated. Animals, for example, are as useful for transportation of goods as they were thousands of years ago.
By observing a horizontal slice of a tree trunk, humans invented a wheel. The wheel is cited as the hallmark of human innovation because it eased the way for so many new inventions. We, however, do not see wheels being used in nature. The reason is obvious; wheels are inferior to limbs. It may sound strange to the readers, so it needs further explanation: Wheels can only run over a flat surface; while limbs can manage to walk over uneven surfaces and can even climb the stairs, the rocks, and the mountains. Wheels cannot jump over hurdles while limbs can. Wheels get stuck in sandy plains while limbs do not. Wheels stop working in deep water while limbs become helpful for swimming. The only advantage of wheels is their speed; they can move faster than limbs. They are fast, but not as fast as the other means in nature; sound and light are even faster than the wheels.
It is the dominance of limbs over wheels that even in the age of space technology, animals are still being used as a means of transport for difficult-to-reach areas.
And they (cattle) carry your loads to territory you could not have reached without great hardship. Your Rubb is Clement and Merciful (16: 7)
And the horses, and the mules, and the donkeys – for you to ride, and for luxury. And He creates what you do not know (16: 8)
That you may mount their [animals] backs, and remember the favor of your Rubb as you sit firmly upon them, and say, “Glory be to Him Who placed these at our service; surely we could not have done it by ourselves (43: 13)
The extraordinary techniques applied by Allah are far superior to human knowledge and intellect. Despite having all the knowledge of certain substances, mechanisms and structures in nature, humans are unable to perfectly recreate natural things by artificial means. There are still countless creations that have unique features which make them inimitable. Plants are just one example. Despite having all the knowledge about plant growth: from photosynthesis to how roots absorb water and nutrients from the soil and distribute them up to the height of several meters; humans are still unable to replicate even a Wolffia – the tiniest rootless flowering plant on earth.
And We placed therein gardens of palm trees and grapevines and caused to burst forth therefrom some springs – that they may eat of His fruit. And their hands have not produced it, so will they not be grateful? [For everything they have been getting from plants/trees, like wood, food, and oxygen for billions of years] (36: 34-35)
There are millions of species of plants. They all get the same raw material – air, water, soil and sunshine, but they produce diverse kinds of fruits, flowers and grains. Do humans possess such technology?
On earth are adjacent terrains, and gardens of grapevine, and crops, and date-palms, from the same root or from distinct roots, irrigated with the same water. We make some taste better than others. In that are proofs for people who reason. (13: 4)
And it is He who sends down water from the sky. With it We produce vegetation of all kinds, from which We bring greenery, from which We produce grains in clusters. And palm-trees with hanging clusters, and vineyards, and olives, and pomegranates – similar and dissimilar. Watch their fruits as they grow and ripen…… (6: 99)
Milking animals are an excellent food-manufacturing, processing and purifying machines of nature.
And there is a lesson for you in cattle: We give you a drink from their bellies, from between waste and blood, pure milk, refreshing to the drinkers (16: 66)
Fruits are the best packed items of nature. Every single fruit or nut is safely and hygienically packed in their biodegradable skin/rind or a shell. None of this packing material adds waste or pollution in the environment. Think, how much pollution do the man-made packing material cause in the environment!
Bacteria, viruses, and enzymes: they are the best micro-bots and nanobots of nature. If there were no bacteria or decomposers on the earth, all dead bodies would have been lying on the surface of the earth. Is there any match for Allah’s creation in the machine-world? Whatever humans create, it adds heaps and mounds of waste to the land.
No microchip or memory card can store data more than that contained in a gene of a living cell. A living cell that can be seen only under a microscope, is far superior to any hi-tech man-made factory. It can make all parts needed to produce a copy of itself during cell-division. Is there any man-made factory that can match the technology of a living cell? The reproductive system is a natural manufacturing machine that can produce different copies of the original species. Our brain is the best video player that can replay video images of not only past events but also create a clear picture of our imagination and events [dreams] that have never happened in our real life. The heart, the lungs and the kidneys are amazing machines that come into form on a self-assembly basis. It is not only these, but each creation of Allah takes its form on a self-assembly basis without producing any noise or pollution in the environment. No human technology can be everlasting or outpass the nature. Natural technology is self-maintaining, silent, environmentally friendly, and long-lasting and provides the maximum productivity for the least amount of energy. Moreover, each and everything gets recycled automatically without disturbing any natural balance.
Moreover, all sense organs are the best detectors. Do humans possess any technology that can tell us about different flavors and odors? The peripheral nervous system is the best wiring system [composed of nerves] that connects all parts of the body [comprising of 37 trillion cells] to the brain. The brain has a unique ability to receive, process, analyze, combine, store, and reproduce tons of information each day. Is there any technology with humans that can transform such information into feelings and emotions?
Rain-bearing cloud can hold up to 300,000 tons of water in the air without any container or support. Do we have any technology that can keep this much weight aloft?
Each cloud-to-ground lightning bolt can contain up to one billion volts of electricity. The average lightning bolt is about five miles long and its temperature can reach around 50,000oF. Such a huge amount of energy is produced in just seconds. Do humans possess any such technology that can generate such an amount in seconds?
Thousands of kilometers of the land on earth is covered with ice. Do we see any freezing machine in nature?
The gravitational force of the moon pulls water from the oceans upward which creates a high tide in the oceans. Tides in the ocean are important for marine life. Do we have any technology that can bring even the slightest stir in the oceans just for a second?
Furthermore, the sun is an excellent powerhouse for the earth. It has been supplying light and heat for billions of years without any refueling or recharging. This energy is reaching us without any cable or connector. Is there any man-made powerhouse that can match the efficacy as that of the sun?
This is the creation of Allah. So, show Me what those other than Him have created. Rather, the wrongdoers are in clear error (31: 11)
Say [to the wrongdoers], “It is He Who produced you; and made for you the hearing and the vision, and the organs. But rarely do you give thanks” (Al Mulk: 23)
…………………..Indeed, Allah is full of bounty to the people, but most of the people are not grateful (40: 61)
………………………. “Be grateful to Allah.” And whoever is grateful is grateful for [the benefits of] himself. And whoever denies [His favor] – then indeed, Allah is free of need and Praiseworthy (31: 12)
But if they turn away, [O Muhammad] – then only upon you is [responsibility for] clear notification. They recognize the favor of Allah; then they deny it. And most of them are disbelievers (16: 82-83)