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Islamic Society (15 Apr 2017 NewAgeIslam.Com)


Scientific and Qur’anic Concept of Death

 

 

By Kazi Wadud Nawaz, New Age Islam

15 April 2017

From Scientific point of view “Death is the termination of all the vital functions which keep an organism alive. When, because of some reason, the nutrients/oxygen etc don't reach the cells of our body, they cannot function. If this is permanent...the cells constituting the body cannot carry on the basic processes it needs to stay alive. If the basic unit of our body is not working....we die.”  This is the Physiological aspect of death.

Understanding the meaning of life and its survival from scientific and religious point of view is very important for comprehending the significance of life and death as divine creation.

Death is not a journey towards an unknown destination.  From religious point of view death is the starting point of a journey predestined and pre-planned by Allah (swt) for traversing eternal life-cycle of mankind from the life on earth to Hereafter. The Journey – its Route and Destination have been clearly chalked out in the Holy Quran and pin-pointed by the Holy Prophet (PBU) thousand and one times. So there is no scope for a Muslim to deny it. It’s a journey from Finite to Infinite and from mixed domain in worldly life to the spiritual domain of Here-after. Withdrawal of Divine Command from corporeal entity means death. Death is a Gate-way that guarantees freedom of Soul from its Material Bondage.

Life and death are integrated aspects of eternal life cycle of mankind.  Every Cell of our body has been infused with necessary divine command in the form of ‘genetic information’ as a motive force to promote organ-Specific Biological function. The whole process of divine creation including all life-forms unfurls through Divine Synthesis of Matter and Spirit. Death is just the reverse- analytical process of dissociation of the two that gives rise to an all pervasive physical torment and agony for a living being.

Modern Medical Science defines Death as “permanent cessation of the critical functions of the organism as a whole” Critical functions are those without which the organism as a whole cannot function: control of respiration and circulation, neuro-endocrine and homeostatic regulation, and consciousness.

Death is defined as the irreversible loss of all these functions. The debate centering around “whether this loss is a process or a vent is seemingly insolvable”. Modern Medical Science is yet to resolve this polemics.

Finally, death is a biological phenomenon for which we have constructed pragmatic medical, moral and legal policies on the basis of their social acceptance.

 Improvement of science and technologies for organ transplantation, cardiac surgery,  brain repair and prosthetic support for brain functions  (for example, stem cells, neurogenesis, neural computer prostheses, cryonic suspension and nano-neurological repair) might one day change the  current ideas of irreversibility and constrain  medical science  and society to  revise its definition of death.

Qur’anic Concept of Death is more spiritual than physical.  Destabilizing the Divine Balance [Meezan] in Physico-Chemical Systems that keep any living being alive, through Withdrawal of Divine Command (Ruh) means death.  .

Death is the cessation of all Physical and Bio-chemical processes necessary for life caused by disruption in Transmission Net work of Genetic Information resulting from withdrawal of Divine Inspirations that keep the whole life process going.

  From Quranic Point of View “Death” is the Gate-way or Entry Point towards continuity of Human Life-Cycle from physical to spiritual domain of Infinite Dimension.  As for the Holy Qur’an, death is a phenomenon more spiritual than physical, the last drama of life to be staged through withdrawal of divine command from each cell of the body. According to the holy Quran Sleep and Death have close similitude in respect of withdrawal of divine command, the only difference one is temporary and the other is permanent. Every time we sleep we die, and wake up on being resurrected again-this is what the Quran says about sleep and death [Verse-39:42].

The holy Qur’an has drawn a clear line of demarcation between the death of believers and unbelievers, and that between the righteous and evil doers. Physically both deaths are same but spiritually they are far apart. Attitude and treatment of the angels in charge of death on the earth and post-death interrogation in the grave-all will be different [verses-45:21, 41:30-32]. The believers will taste death only once but the nonbelievers multiple times in “a state of nothingness” viewing hells in a continuous state of nightmare [Verses 2:28, 40:11 &40:46].

The Following Two Qur’anic Verses Reveal the Essence of Spirituality of Death of Mankind

“Yea, when (the soul) reaches to the collar-bone (in its exit), and there will be a cry. Who is an enchanter (to restore him)? And he will think that it was (the time) of parting, And one leg (the last step in the world) will be joined with another (the first step in the Here-after)r, That Day the Drive will be (all)to your Lord!”[Verses-75:26-30]

 “Then why do you not (intervene) when (the soul of the dying man reaches his throat, and you the while (sit) looking on. But We are nearer to him than you, and yet see not. Then why do you not’ if you are exempt from (future) account, Call back the soul, if you are true ( in your claim of independence)?[ Verse56:83-87]

 That death is an occasion when mankind gets his creator very close to him is no-doubt a good news and happy occasion for the believers but certainly a bad news and unhappy moment for the non-believers.

The Verses 75:26-30 has clearly described death as a vital link between here and here-after that marks the transition and   ensures continuity of eternal life-cycle of mankind.

Crossing the Border of life doesn’t mean it’s absolute separation from the life on earth – what remains of life is its spiritual bondage in respect of our worldly performance-“the last step of the worldly life will be entangled with the first step on the here-after”-of course a determining factor which depending on the Mercy of Allah will decide the course of divine judgment and the life here-after.

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Engr. Kazi Wadud Nawaz is an NGO Development Consultant

URL: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-society/kazi-wadud-nawaz,-new-age-islam/scientific-and-qur’anic-concept-of-death/d/110779

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TOTAL COMMENTS:-   4


  • What I have said will be shocking to all those who have lived all their lives believing that the concept of soul is supported by the Quran but it would be worthwhile for them to seriously consider what I have written.

    The concept of soul is neither supported by Science nor the Quran. The two words "Ruh" and "Nafs" that are often mistranslated as soul are not even synonyms! Neither of these words are found in any verse where the subject is death or resurrection. I am not trying to oversimplify anything but trying to clear up the clutter of centuries of poor scholarship which has attempted to accommodate alien concepts from other cultures and changed the meanings of words used in the Quran.

    The other key words in the Quran which do not mean what these words have come to mean over the centuries are: 1. Kafir 2. Shaheed/Shuhuda.

    Such changes in meaning have had the effect of completely distorting the message of the Quran. Islamic theology as it stands today, is in many ways antithetical to the message of the Quran on account of such distortions.


    By Naseer Ahmed - 4/18/2017 12:40:12 AM



  • Dear friends,
     From Quranic View point Here-before, Here and Hereafter all are integrated part of eternal life cycle of mankind. Our Culture of stressing too much on problems of life leaving aside the justification of death makes problems of life more complicated. Human life finds its purpose and justification in death.
    Mr. Naseer's assertion that only the physical body will be resurrected at the time of resurrection, sounds  too much like oversimplification of divine phenomenon of Resurrection Thanks.

    It is very much the physical body that we will have on being resurrected and there is no "spiritual" existence that the Quran speaks of.  - See more at: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-society/scientific-and-qur%E2%80%99anic-concept-of-death/d/110779#sthash.Ei8vY6B9.dpuf
    It is very much the physical body that we will have on being resurrected and there is no "spiritual" existence that the Quran speaks of.  - See more at: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-society/scientific-and-qur%E2%80%99anic-concept-of-death/d/110779#sthash.Ei8vY6B9.dpuf
    On resurrection, we will be reconstructed right to our finger tips but there is no mention of our "soul" getting back into the reconstructed body. It is very much the physical body that we will have on being resurrected and there is no "spiritual" existence that the Quran speaks of.  - See more at: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-society/scientific-and-qur%E2%80%99anic-concept-of-death/d/110779#sthash.Ei8vY6B9.dpuf
    On resurrection, we will be reconstructed right to our finger tips but there is no mention of our "soul" getting back into the reconstructed body. It is very much the physical body that we will have on being resurrected and there is no "spiritual" existence that the Quran speaks of.  - See more at: http://www.newageislam.com/islamic-society/scientific-and-qur%E2%80%99anic-concept-of-death/d/110779#sthash.Ei8vY6B9.dpuf

    By Kazi Wadud Nawaz - 4/17/2017 8:06:50 AM



  • The two words in the Quran that are mistranslated as soul are:

    1. Ruh
    2. Nafs

    neither of them mean soul. These two words are not even used in the verses 75:26-30 or 56:83 to 87 or in any other verse dealing with death or resurrection.

    Nafs is used variously in the Quran to mean a person or an individual or consciousness. Sleep and death are alike only in the sense that in both states we lose consciousness of self which returns when we wake up and does not when we die. There is no consciousness without our senses in a state of wakefulness and without the brain.

    The "soul" in other cultures means a non-material part of our "true-self" with a consciousness and intelligence of its own without the body and without the brain. No such thing exists nor is it recognized by science nor by the Quran. The Quran simply does not support the concept of "soul" as understood in other cultures. On resurrection, we will be reconstructed right to our finger tips but there is no mention of our "soul" getting back into the reconstructed body. It is very much the physical body that we will have on being resurrected and there is no "spiritual" existence that the Quran speaks of. 

    Ruh is simply the life giving breath and can be administered artificially  to a person in need of resuscitation through a person or a machine.

    Jesus Christ fashioned a bird of clay and breathed life into it. Did the bird acquire Jesus' soul or could that bird be called the soul of Jesus? Neither did Jesus or Adam acquire the soul of Allah when the breath of life was breathed into them. What leaves the throat of a dying man is the last breath of his life and not his soul.

    There is no verse in the Quran that speaks about post-death interrogation in the grave. Even the sinners like the pharaoh are only shown their fate in the Hereafter morning and evening but the punishment is only after judgment on the Day of Judgment.

    Let us look at another verse that has confused all:
    (7:172) When thy Lord drew forth from the Children of Adam - from their loins - their descendants, and made them testify concerning themselves, (saying): "Am I not your Lord (who cherishes and sustains you)?"- They said: "Yea! We do testify!" (This), lest ye should say on the Day of Judgment: "Of this we were never mindful":

    To explain this verse, commentators have fabricated the myth of Alam-e-Arwah in which all "souls" yet to be born, were collected and who were made to testify regarding Allah. Such myths lead to several false beliefs. What proceeds from the loins of Adam and his children are not the "souls" of their progeny but the genes and what the verse simply means is that a belief in Allah as the Creator, Cherisher and Sustainer is part of our genetic memory or part of our human instinct.



    By Naseer Ahmed - 4/17/2017 3:03:53 AM



  • Let us talk about life because that's where the most serious difficulties of our community lie.


    By Ghulam Mohiyuddin - 4/15/2017 12:51:17 PM



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