Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Surah Al Baqarah (2:22) – Earth a Couch and Heaven a Canopy

الَّذِي جَعَلَ لَكُمُ الأَرْضَ فِرَاشاً وَالسَّمَاء بِنَاء وَأَنزَلَ مِنَ السَّمَاء مَاء فَأَخْرَجَ بِهِ مِنَ الثَّمَرَاتِ رِزْقاً لَّكُمْ فَلاَ تَجْعَلُواْ لِلّهِ أَندَاداً وَأَنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ

Who made the earth a resting place for you and the heaven a canopy and (Who) sends down rain from the cloud then brings forth with it subsistence for you of the fruits; therefore do not set up rivals to Allah while you know

M Shakir's Qur'an Translation

Who has made the earth your couch, and the heavens your canopy; and sent down rain from the heavens; and brought forth therewith Fruits for your sustenance; then set not up rivals unto Allah when ye know (the truth)

Yusuf Ali's Qur'an Translation

Who hath appointed the earth a resting-place for you and the sky a canopy; and causeth water to pour down from the sky, thereby producing fruits as food for you. And do not set up rivals to Allah when ye know (better)

Pickthall's Qur'an Translation

Earth as a couch (a living place)

There are various factors, which make the earth the only living planet. There are various divine 'balances' established on the earth which make the earth a perfect living place, in fact, the only living place. Exploring only a few of the millions of these delicate balances would be sufficient to show that the world we live in is specially designed for us. The earth is a living planet where many complex systems run perfectly without stopping at all. When compared to other planets, it is evident that in all its aspects the earth has been specially designed for human life. Built on delicate balances, life prevails in every spot of this planet, from the atmosphere to the depths of the earth.

It is sufficient to look at millions of dead planets in space in order to understand that the delicate balances required for life on earth is not a result of random coincidences. The conditions essential for life are too complicated to have been formed 'on their own' and at random, and these conditions are specially created for life alone.

Let's not go that far and explore the planets of our own solar system.

Climatic and Atmospheric Conditions of Planets of the Solar System


The ninth planet from the Sun and outermost known planet of the solar system. Pluto is far away from Earth, and no spacecraft has yet been sent to the planet. All the information astronomers have on Pluto comes from observation through large telescopes. Pluto has a thin atmosphere consisting of nitrogen with traces of carbon monoxide and methane. Atmospheric pressure on the planet's surface is about 100,000 times less than Earth's atmospheric pressure at sea level. Pluto's atmosphere is believed to freeze out as a snow on the planet's surface for most of each plutonian orbit. There had been a discussion going on amongst the scientists whether Pluto is a 'planet' according to the modern definition or not. Irrespective of that from the above mentioned facts about Pluto it's quite clear that there's no chance of human or any plant life on pluto.


A major planet in the solar system, eighth planet from the Sun and fourth largest in diameter. Neptune maintains an almost constant distance, about 4.5 billion km (about 2.8 billion mi), from the Sun. Neptune's vast body of liquid accounts for most of its volume. Scientists think this ocean is composed mostly of water as well as molecules of methane and ammonia. Neptune's ocean is extremely hot (about 4700°C/about 8500°F). The ocean remains liquid at this temperature instead of evaporating because the pressure deep in Neptune is several million times higher than the atmospheric pressure on Earth. Higher pressure holds molecules in liquid closer together and prevents them from spreading apart to form vapor. Neptune has an active atmosphere, with winds and massive storms that may be caused by heat escaping the planet's interior. Neptune's winds, which blow in a latitude direction, are faster in the planet's Polar Regions than they are at Neptune's equator. Neptune has the fastest winds in the solar system, reaching speeds of 2,000 km/h (1,200 mph)


A major planet in the solar system, seventh planet from the Sun. Uranus contains mostly rock and water, with hydrogen and helium (and trace amounts of methane) in its dense atmosphere. Astronomers believe that Uranus formed from the same material—principally frozen water and rock—that composes most of the planet's moons. As the planet grew, pressures and temperatures in the planet's interior increased, heating the planet's frozen water into a hot liquid. Uranus probably has a relatively small rocky core (smaller in size than Earth's core), with a radius no larger than 2,000 km (1,240 mi) and a temperature of about 6650°C (12,000°F). Uranus's core may be small because most of the rock composing the planet remains mixed with the body of water that surrounds the core and extends upward to the planet's atmosphere.


Sixth planet in order of distance from the Sun, and the second largest in the solar system. Saturn's most distinctive feature is its ring system, which was first seen in 1610 by Italian scientist Galileo, using one of the first telescopes. The temperatures of Saturn's cloud tops are close to –176°C (-285°F). The mean density of Saturn is eight times less than that of Earth because the planet consists mainly of hydrogen. The enormous weight of Saturn's atmosphere causes the atmospheric pressure to increase rapidly toward the interior, where the hydrogen gas condenses into a liquid. Closer to the center of the planet, the liquid hydrogen is compressed into metallic hydrogen, which is an electrical conductor. Electrical currents in this metallic hydrogen are responsible for the planet's magnetic field.


Fifth planet from the Sun and the largest planet in the solar system. The fourth brightest object in Earth's sky, after the Sun, the Moon, and Venus. Jupiter is a ball of dense gas and has no solid surface. Jupiter may have a core composed of rock-forming minerals like those trapped in comet ices, but the core makes up less than 5 percent of the planet's mass. The force of gravity at the level of the highest clouds in Jupiter's atmosphere is about 2.5 times the force of gravity at Earth's surface. Gas and clouds in Jupiter's atmosphere travel at high speeds. This phenomenon is not fully understood but it is related to the planet's high rate of rotation. Major storms often appear suddenly on Jupiter. Jupiter's storms are caused by bubbles of warmer gas rising through the atmosphere from deep within the planet. These bubbles, carrying varying amounts of heat, create cloud systems that are constrained on the north and south by bands of strong wind blowing in opposite directions. Unable to move north or south, and with no solid landmasses to create friction, the storms roll in the winds and feed off smaller storm systems for weeks or longer. Jupiter's most famous storm, the Great Red Spot, has persisted for centuries. The Great Red Spot is so enormous that if three Earths were placed side by side in front of it, they would scarcely span it.


It is the fourth planet from the Sun. Mars is named for the Roman god of war and is sometimes called the red planet because it appears fiery red in Earth's night sky. Mars is a relatively small planet, with about half the diameter of Earth and about one-tenth Earth's mass. The force of gravity on the surface of Mars is about one-third of that on Earth. Mars has twice the diameter and twice the surface gravity of Earth's Moon. The surface of Mars would be a harsh place for humans, but it is more like the surface of Earth than that of any other planet. The temperature on Mars never gets much warmer than the temperature at Antarctica, and it is usually much colder. At the surface the average temperature is about -55°C (about -67°F) and at the extremes it ranges from about -140° to 15°C (about -225° to 60°F). During most of the year wind speeds are fairly low—about 7 km/h (about 4 mph)—but during dust storms they can approach 70 to 80 km/h (40 to 50 mph). The atmosphere of Mars is 95 percent carbon dioxide, nearly 3 percent nitrogen, and nearly 2 percent argon with tiny amounts of oxygen, carbon monoxide, water vapor, ozone, and other trace gases. Earth's atmosphere is mostly nitrogen and oxygen, with only 0.03 percent carbon dioxide. The pressure of the Martian atmosphere varies with the seasons, ranging from 6 to 10 millibars, or about 1 percent of the air pressure at Earth's surface. Most scientists today do not believe that there is any life on the surface of Mars. Conditions at the surface are extremely hostile to life as we know it. Temperatures are usually well below the freezing point of water, and the atmosphere is extremely thin and dry. Without a protective ozone layer like Earth's, ultraviolet radiation bathes the surface and would destroy any organic molecules exposed there.


The second in distance from the Sun. Except for the Sun and the Moon, Venus is the brightest object in the sky. The planet is called the morning star when it appears in the east at sunrise and the evening star when it is in the west at sunset. The atmosphere of the planet consists of 97 percent carbon dioxide and is so thick that the surface pressure is 96 bars (compared with 1 bar on Earth). The surface temperature on Venus varies little from place to place and is extremely hot, about 462°C (736 K/864°F).


Mercury (planet), one of the planets in the solar system. Mercury orbits closest to the Sun of all the planets. The Mariner 10 spacecraft reported temperatures to be about 430°C (about 810°F) on the sunlit side and about -180°C (about -290°F) on the dark side.


Earth one of nine planets in the solar system, the only planet known to harbor life, and the "home" of human beings. A true 'living place' like the Qur'an mentioned. From space Earth resembles a big blue marble with swirling white clouds floating above blue oceans. Unlike the other planets, Earth has a unique set of characteristics ideally suited to supporting life as we know it. It is neither too hot, like Mercury, the closest planet to the Sun, nor too cold, like distant Mars and the even more distant outer planets—Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, tiny Pluto. Earth's atmosphere includes just the right amount of gases that trap heat from the Sun, resulting in a moderate climate suitable for water to exist in liquid form. The atmosphere also helps block radiation from the Sun that would be harmful to life. Earth's atmosphere distinguishes it from the planet Venus, which is otherwise much like Earth. Venus is about the same size and mass as Earth and is also neither too near nor too far from the Sun. But because Venus has too much heat-trapping carbon dioxide in its atmosphere, its surface is extremely hot—462°C (864°F)—hot enough to melt lead and too hot for life to exist.

Hence Allah has made the earth فِرَاشاً (a bed, a couch) a living place that is governed by perfect balances necessary for human life to exist.

The Heaven a Canopy

Word Analysis:

The Arabic word used in the ayat is بِنَاء
meaning structure, canopy or roof.

The heavens serve us the same purpose like the roof of a house does and save us from the harmful rays. The magnetic field of the Van Allen radiation belt serves protects the earth from many harmful rays coming out from all sorts of reactions going on in the immense cosmos 'outside'. The heaven only allow a part of the huge spectrum of rays to pass through; exactly those, which we require.

Van Allen Radiation Belt

Inside the magnetosphere are the Van Allen radiation belts, named for the American physicist James A. Van Allen who discovered them in 1958. The Van Allen belts are regions where charged particles from the Sun and from cosmic rays are trapped and sent into spiral paths along the lines of Earth's magnetic field. The radiation belts thereby shield Earth's surface from these highly energetic particles.

Ozone Layer

Ozone Layer is a region of the atmosphere from 19 to 48 km above the earth's surface. Ozone concentrations of up to 10 parts per million occur in the ozone layer. The ozone forms there by the action of sunlight on oxygen. Ozone layer of the atmosphere protects life on earth from the full force of the sun's cancer-causing ultraviolet radiation. The layer of atmosphere above the troposphere is called the stratosphere. In the stratosphere, air temperature begins to increase with height, mainly because ozone (a type of oxygen) in the stratosphere absorbs energy from the sun, principally ultraviolet radiation. Although the amount of ozone in the stratosphere is quite small, it is important because it protects living things on the earth by absorbing the sun's harmful ultraviolet radiation. The earth's atmosphere protects living organisms from the sun's ultraviolet radiation. If all the ultraviolet radiation produced by the sun were allowed to reach the surface of the earth, most life on earth would probably be destroyed. Fortunately, the ozone layer of the atmosphere absorbs almost all of the short-wavelength ultraviolet radiation, and much of the long-wavelength ultraviolet radiation.

A strange thing to know is that it is the same ozone molecule, which acts as a pollutant when found at lower levels of the atmosphere in urban smog. Up at the stratospheric level, however, ozone forms a protective layer that serves a vital function: It absorbs the wavelength of solar radiation known as ultraviolet-B (UV-B). UV-B damages deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), the genetic molecule found in every living cell, increasing the risk of such problems as cancer in humans. Because of its protective function, the ozone layer is essential to life on Earth.

In the recent decades depletion in the ozone layer has caused much harm to life. Without our atmosphere, there would be no life on Earth. A relatively thin envelope, the atmosphere consists of layers of gases that support life and provide protection from harmful radiation.

See the complete list of Scientific Miracles in Surah Baqarah here

Comments, Queries and Suggestion at

Get Updates for New Post:

Get Updates for New Comment:


Post a Comment