Islamic Prophecies: Moon landing

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Voyage to the moon
Moon landing
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“The moon has split and the hour has drawn closer” (The Quran, 54:1)


A very interesting prophecy relates to the moon landing (which occurred in 1969), is it possible The Quran predicted this? Well, judge for yourself by considering the following information – Chapter 54 of The Quran is entitled “The Moon” and starts right away by giving us news about the splitting of the moon as a sign that the end of the world is drawing close, with the above ayat.


When did the prophecy come to pass?


To answer that, one must keep the prophecy in mind: “The moon has split.” This is a metaphor. Parts of the moon have left its surface. They no longer are part of the moon. So, the prophecy does not refer to the landing on the moon or to the first step made by Neil Armstrong but to the fact that Armstrong and Aldrin collected 21 kilograms of lunar rocks to bring back to earth. The prophecy was fulfilled at the very moment the astronauts left the moon in the lunar module containing 21 kilograms of rocks that had belonged to the moon. This can be confirmed by checking the definition of “split” in any dictionary, among the definitions given by Dictionary.com are – “to divide, disunite, separate”


The date this prophecy came to pass was on July 21 1969. The moment the prophecy was fulfilled is confirmed by the hour of departure of the lunar module, which left the lunar surface at 17:54:1 (Universal Time) or 1:54:1 (EDT) and as you have seen above, verse [54:1] is the verse that deals with the prophecy.


Still not convinced? Lets read the following verses after (54:1) –


“The moon has split and the hour has drawn closer. Then they saw a great miracle; but they turned away and said, “Old magic.” They disbelieved, followed their opinions, and adhered to their old traditions.” (The Quran, from 54:1 to 54:3)


Here, the author of The Quran specifically states – “the moon has split”, then people will see “a great miracle”, yet they still “disbelieved”. Could the “great miracle” be the fulfillment of prophecy?


Rebuttal[edit]

The Claim that the start of the 54th Surah prophesies the Moon Landing is an interesting spin on the actual text provided as 'proof'; the extrapolation and reasoning path of the writer sure is interesting to read though. There are a couple of points to note here:


1. When reading the 54th Surah in context, it is immediately obvious that the 'splitting of the moon' is reported as being an actual physical event. It is not metaphorical; nor presented as such. After talking about the moon splitting, Surah 54 goes on to talk other other 'signs' that were rejected by the unbelievers: the flood that was sent because people did not listen to Noah, the people of 'Ad that were besieged by a tornado for not listening, the people who refused to listen to Lot were punished with a stone storm & Pharaoh and his army were destroyed when they were drowned in the sea.

Again, these are all physical 'signs'; things that clearly seem miraculous (ie. no human intervention).


In his Tafsir, Kathir states that Muhammad actually, physically split the moon. Here is a portion of Kathir's commentary on 54:1 to show that Kathir also agrees that the Splitting of the Moon is a physical event:

Al-Bukhari recorded that Ibn `Abbas said, "The moon was split during the time of the Prophet . Al-Bukhari and Muslim collected this Hadith. Ibn Jarir recorded that Ibn `Abbas commented on Allah's saying:

[اقْتَرَبَتِ السَّاعَةُ وَانشَقَّ الْقَمَرُ - وَإِن يَرَوْاْ ءَايَةً يُعْرِضُواْ وَيَقُولُواْ سِحْرٌ مُّسْتَمِرٌّ ]

(The Hour has drawn near, and the moon has been cleft asunder. And if they see a sign, they turn away and say: "This is magic, Mustamir.) "This occurred before the Hijrah; the moon was split and they saw it in two parts.

Maudaudi also agrees:

The amazing and wonderful phenomenon of the splitting of the Moon was a manifest sign of the truth that the Resurrection, of which the Holy Prophet was giving them the news, could take place and that it had approached near at hand. The great sphere of the Moon had split into two distinct parts in front of their very eyes. The two parts had separated and receded so much apart from each other that to the on-lookers one part had appeared on one side of the mountain and the other on the other side of it. Then, in an instant the two had rejoined.

There is absolutely no evidence in historical records (apart from the ahadith) that the moon actually did split at any point; nor is there any physical evidence that this was the case; but the interpretation of two tafsir writers shows that they both agreed that the splitting of the moon, as described in surah 54 is not meant as a metaphor but as an actual physical event.


2. The author then quotes 54:1-3 as further 'proof' of his claim that these verses allude to the moon landing. On the contrary, these verses do not indicate any interpretation like that which the author is trying ti imply. Again, reading the surah in context, we see that a similar admonition is given for every example of a catastrophic event that befall the people that did not listen. In, fact, quoting tho following verses cements the fact that the event that (allegedly) occurs is of such magnitude that the 'miracle' could not have been accomplished by other means (ie. people).

Conclusion[edit]

The verse in Surah 54 are not metaphorical in nature; neither to the casual reader nor to the experts. There is absolutely no indication in the text or from the tafsir's in order to come to this conclusion. This is not fulfilled prophecy.


External Links[edit]

Muslim websites:


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