Islam and Science – Chapter 1 – The Scope of Physics

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Despite the fact that Islam is a religion of faith, many Muslims do not hesitate to embrace science. In fact, the Qur’an calls upon believers to seek knowledge, including scientific knowledge.

The question of whether science and religion can coexist is a complex one. The answer will vary widely among Muslims, depending on their beliefs about God and the natural world.

Physical Science

Physical science is one of the four main areas in the field of natural sciences. It studies different aspects of matter and energy and the universe.

This field covers topics such as physics, chemistry, and astronomy. It also includes topics such as the structure of atoms and molecules.

However, there is some controversy regarding the scope of this science in Islam and science. Many Muslims consider certain scientific practices to be unnatural or immoral on religious grounds.

Some of these include research that uses non-halal substances (such as marijuana), pregnancy technologies that are not halal, and procedures that use genetic material that is not taken from a husband and wife. Although these concerns are legitimate, they do not conflict with the overall goal of improving humanity’s knowledge about the world around them.


The word “Islam” brings to mind images of fanatical terrorists flying jet airplanes full of people into buildings full of even more people, all in the name, they say, of their god. It is a sad reflection on the ease with which these fanatics can hijack not only an entire culture and its associated religion, but the world of science and technology as well.

Islam, like all cultures, has its share of fanatics who seek to undermine and destroy the progress that they see as their heritage and way of life. However, these crazed fanatics fail to understand that they have not only destroyed a civilization, but the very basis of the knowledge and science that made them successful.

Islamic mathematics, which was much more analytical and less mystical than that of the Greeks, did make considerable additions to its field. These were not the simple preservation of a few Greek concepts and the transfer of Hindu mathematical techniques to Europe, but the creation of sophisticated systems of algebra and the introduction of many now-standard mathematical notations.


Islam is one of the most diversified religious traditions in the world, and science is an integral part of this cultural heritage. In fact, Muslim scholars in the medieval period studied physics, optics, and mathematics.

In addition, they also studied astronomy, primarily by focusing on the celestial bodies of the universe and their movements. They were also interested in the construction of astronomical instruments, and the use of astrolabes.

The most important astronomical text, Ptolemy’s Almagest, was translated into Arabic around 800 AD, and was used as the primary source for astronomy in the Islamic world. This allowed the development of a sophisticated scientific understanding of the stars and planets. It also provided a foundation for the Copernican revolution, in which it was believed that the universe had its origins in a single Big Bang.


In the field of chemistry, Muslim scientists made many discoveries that greatly contributed to modern science. Jabir ibn Hayyan (Latinized as Geber) and Zakariya al-Razi, in particular, developed foundations of modern chemistry that served until modern times.

Their accomplishments include perfection of scientific techniques like crystallisation, distillation, calcination and dissolution in the right concentration, and preserving substances in alcohol or syrup. Their experiments paved the way for the invention of various chemical instruments, such as the alembic and still, which were able to fully purify materials.

Muslim scientists also used chemistry in the development of their pharmaceutical industry, producing chemical medicines for the first time in history. They also applied various chemistry operations to separate liquids, prepare some metals from their crude or remove impurities.


During the Islamic Golden Age, science developed in many ways. From astronomy and mathematics to optics and medicine, Muslims were highly trained in these fields.

Despite this, Muslim scholars have often struggled with issues of scientific accuracy and the relationship between religious faith and science. This was especially true for the early Muslim scientists who explored the possibility of evolution, before Darwin’s On the Origin of Species was published.

In the eleventh century, Islamic law was interpreted to discourage heterodox thought, such as those who disagreed with Muhammad’s monotheism. In addition, Islam’s apostasy (zandaqa) statute became more punitive, and this created a stifling atmosphere for science. Nevertheless, a number of Muslim scientists remain active in the field of science today. They have made important contributions to the study of physics, biology and genetics.

Islam and Science – Chapter 1 – The Scope of Physics

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