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The Miracle of the Splitting of the Moon


The Miracle of the Splitting of the Moon

Miracles Of Muhammad [s.a.w]

 

“The hour (of Judgment) is nigh, and the moon is cleft asunder. But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say “This is (but) transient magic.” (1)

In this part, we are going to give information about how the miracle of the splitting of the moon, which is a clear sign of the verse of the Qur’an, occurred and seen in all authentic hadith as well as in sirah sources at the degree of Mutawatir manawi and we will also try to answer some questions that may come to the mind.

How did the Miracle of the Splitting of the Moon occur?

The miracle of the splitting of the moon occurred before the migration to Medina (2) upon the demands of the polytheists with the permission of God and it was shown by the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as narrated by many companions like Anas b. Malik (3), Hz. Ali, Huzayfa b. Yaman (4), Abdullah b. Mas’ud (5), Abdullah b. Abbas (6), Abdullah b. Umar (7), Abdullah b. Amr b. As (8), Jubayr b. Mut’im (9) (May Allah be pleased with all of them). (10)

Among Quraish polytheists, Walid b. Mughira, Abu Jahl. As b. Wail, As b. Hisham, Aswad b. Abdi Yaghus, Aswad b. Muttalib, Zama b. Aswad, Nadr b. Harith and others (11) said to the prophet Muhammad (PBUH):

“If you truly are a Prophet that has been appointed by Allah, then split the moon in half. Let it be in such a way that one half will appear over the Mount Abu Qubais and the other half will be seen over Mount Quayqian.”

The prophet Muhammad (PBUH) asked:

“If I do it, will you become Muslims?”

The polytheists answered:

“Yes, we will.”

On the 14th night, when it was full moon, the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) wanted Almighty Allah to give him the miracle which the polytheists demanded from him. (12)

When the Gabriel (AS) informed the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) that God had accepted his prayer, he announced it to the Meccans. The polytheists witnessed the splitting of the moon on the 14th night. (13)

When Almighty God let the moon split in half, one half standing over Mount Abu Qubais and the other half over Mount Quayqian, the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) shouted at Muslims:

“O Abu Salama b. Abdulasad! Arqam b. Abi’l Erqam! Bear witness! (14)

And to the polytheists, he said, “Bear witness! So and so! (15)

However, the polytheists said “This is one of the spells of Abu Kabsha’s Son.” (16) “The son of Abu Kabsha cast a spell on you!” (17) They said “Muhammad cast a spell on us!” (18)

Some of them also said:

“If Muhammad had cast a spell on us then (19), He couldn’t have cast a spell on everyone! (20) Let us ask the wayfarers who came from the surrounding areas (21) if they saw what we saw.” (21)

They asked the people who came from every everywhere. (22-23)

“Yes! We also did see the moon in that state! We saw the moon as split! They informed that the moon was split. Among the people who came from everywhere and seen the moon split, there was no one who had not informed them about it. (24)

However, the polytheists rejected to be Muslims and to believe by saying:

“This is a prevalent magic!” (25), they said “Abu Talib’s orphan affected the sky with his spell!” (26).

Almighty God mentions this miracle in the chapter of al-Qamar as follows:

“The hour (of Judgment) is nigh, and

The moon is cleft asunder.

But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say

“This is (but) transient magic.”

They reject (the warning) and follow their (own) lusts but every matter has its appointed time.

There have already come to them Recitals wherein there is (enough) to check (them),

Mature wisdom― but (the preaching of) Warners profits them not.” (27)

An Explanation about the splitting of the Moon

We want to answer the questions that may come to the mind about the splitting of the moon. Our question is this “Did the miracle of the splitting of the moon occur? Why do the historical records not mention about the splitting of the moon? Despite the advancement of science nowadays, why is there no any trace of the splitting on the moon? If the event of the splitting had occurred, then the trace of this should have been on its surface.” We are going to answer the first part of this two-part optioned question with five points and after that we will give the answer to the second question.

Did the miracle of the splitting of the moon occur? Why do the historical records not mention about the splitting of the moon?

The miracle of the splitting of the moon is a miracle shown to some of the polytheists who denied the Apostle of God in order to prove the authenticity of his cause to them with the permission of God. We will try to explain why it is not recorded in history books by items:

1. The miracle of the splitting of the moon is a miracle which is narrated in all books of the Islamic history and sirah sources; besides it is a miracle which is mentioned in the first verses of the surah of al-Qamar of the Qur’an (28). None of the stubborn polytheists who witnessed this miracle along with deniers of the Qur’an denied this but tried to reject it by calling a “Magic!..” (29) No information that this event did not exist in history is given. If this miracle had not occurred, polytheists who did not disregard using even a small event against Islam for denigration would have certainly denied this event which is narrated by history and the Qur’an. Their failure of denying shows that there is no doubt about the occurring of this event.

2. Great scholars like Taftazani said,

“The miracle of the splitting of the moon is a mutawatir event just like the water flowing down from his fingers, the dry wooden stud that the Prophet leaned against while reciting sermons in the mosque crying due to leaving the Prophet and the whole congregation hearing it. [30] That is, it was reported by such a big congregation that it is impossible for them to agree to lie about something. We are sure that a comet called Halley was seen from the world and recorded by historians a thousand years ago because people transmitted that information through centuries; that is, it is mutawatir; we are sure that there is a country called Sri Lanka only by hearing its name though we have not seen it; similarly, the splitting of the moon is mutawatir.

It is stupidity to doubt or to suspect such a certain issue. It is not something impossible. The splitting of the moon is possible like the breakup of a mountain due to a volcanic eruption.

3. Miracles are shown to persuade people who do not believe in a prophet. If they had forced unbelievers to believe, it would have been contrary to the mystery of testing. Therefore, if the moon had remained in two parts for such a long time as to make it possible for everybody to see after being split, it would have caused everybody to believe and the mystery of testing would have been eliminated. Or, it would have been recorded as an ordinary celestial incident. Therefore, the miracle of the splitting of the moon was shown at night all of a sudden to the polytheists and companions who were present there.

4. The following question can come to the mind: Why was the incident of the splitting of the moon not mentioned in the history of other nations? This event took place at night. It was daytime in the other part of the world; therefore, it is normal that it was not seen in the other part. Besides, it is normal that it is not mentioned in the history of the Europeans because they were famous for ignorance and wildness. Fog and cloudy weather might have prevented it from being seen in some places. If such an event is seen by some individuals; they will not believe their eyes and cannot make other people believe it; therefore, it is not recorded in history books.

To sum up, we can say,

1.The statements of the companions who are the representatives of honesty and justice that this event took place,

2.The agreement of many tafsir scholars that this incident was the reason why the verse, “the moon is cleft asunder[31] was sent down, [32]

3.The narrations of those hadith scholars who report from reliable forces that prove this incident, [33] 

4.The news by all of the saints that can discover unknown things and be inspired about them that this incident took place,

5.The confirmation of the incident by various kalam imams, scholars and experts who usually have very different ideas,

6.The belief of the ummah of Muhammad who never agree on something wrong that this incident took place,

prove very clearly that the moon was split.

Why has a trace of splitting on the moon not been found up to now though science has developed so much?

The bruises or wounds on our body heal after a while without leaving any traces; the cracks that appear on the earth disappear in time without leaving any traces; similarly, it is quite sensible that the power that created the moon can eliminate the cleft that He made as a miracle.

On the other hand, as the late Muhammad Hamidullah, the great Islamic scholar points out, there is a trace of a cleft on the surface of the moon from the top to the bottom in the middle of the moon. This cleft is about a mile (a thousand and six hundred meters) wide; the astronomers called it “Hadley Rille”.  The research about that cleft done by Apollo-15 crew was reported in the newspapers then. The picture of the cleft is shown below. [35] The video of the cleft(s) recorded by Apollo-15 crew can be watched in the following web address: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzXZXrt0n2M

Photo: Nasa, GoogleMoon [36]

It is disputable whether the cleft seen in the picture is directly related to the miracle of the splitting of the moon. As it is understood, there are many clefts on the moon. All of the clefts need to be in the same direction and go round in the form of a circle on the same side if they are directly related to the splitting of the moon. We do not know if it is like that or not now. We hope Muslim scientists will research the issue in the future. We can say that those clefts are evidence for those who insistently look for a trace for the miracle of the splitting of the moon.

[1]al-Qamar, 54/1-2.
[2]Qastalani, Mawahibu’l-ladunniyya, V. 1, p. 466; Diyarbekri, Hamis, V. 1, p. 298; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahibu’l-ladunniyya , V.5, p.108.
[3]Bukhari, Sahih, V. 4, p. 1 86; Muslim , Sahih, V. 4, p. 2159; Tirmidhi, Sunan, V. 5, p. 397; Tabari, Tafsir, V. 27, p. 84-85; Hakim, Mustadrak, V. 2, p. 472; Bayhaqi, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa, V. 2, p. 262, 265; Qadi Iyad, Shifa, V. 1, p. 235; Ibn Sayyid, Uyunu’l-Athar, V. 1, p.114; Dhahabi, Tarikhu’l-Islam, p. 209; Abu’l-Fida, al-Bidaya wa’n-nihaya, V. 3, p. 118.
[4]Qadi Iyad, Shifa, V. 1, p. 235; Ibn Sayyid, Uyun, V. 1, p. 11 5; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 118-119; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 298; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahib, V. 5, p. 1 08.
[5]Ahmad b. Hanbal, Musnad, V. 1, p. 377,413; Bukhari, V. 4, p. 186; Muslim, V. 4, p. 2158; Tirmidhi, V. 5, p. 397-398; Tabari, V. 27, p. 85; Hakim, Mustadrak, V. 2, p. 471; Abu Nuaym, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa, V. 1, p. 279, 281; Bayhaqi, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa, V. 2, p.264-265; Qadi Iyad, Shifa, V. 1, p. 234; Ibn Sayyid, V. 1, p. 114; Dhahabi, p. 209-211; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 118.
[6]Bukhari, V. 4, p. 186; Muslim , V. 4, p. 2159; Tabari, V. 27, p. 86; Hakim, Mustadrak, V. 2, p. 472; Abu Nuaym, Dalail, V. 1 ,p. 279-280; Bayhaqi, Dalail, V. 2, p. 267; Ibn Sayyid, V. 1, p. 114; Dhahabi, p. 211; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 118.
[7]Muslim, V. 4, p. 2159; Tirmidhi, V. 5, p. 398; Tabari, V. 27, p. 85; Abu Nuaym, V. 1, p. 279; Bayhaqi, V. 2, p. 267; Qadi Iyad,Shifa.V.1, p. 235; Ibn Sayyid, V. 1, p. 114.
[8] Hakim, Mustadrak, V. 2, p. 472; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 118.
[9]Qadi Iyad, Shifa, V. 1, p. 235; Ibn Sayyid, Uyun, V. 1, p. 115; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 118-119; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 298; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahib, V. 5, p. 1 08.
[10]Qadi Iyad, Shifa, V. 1, p. 235; Qastalani, Mawahibu’l-ladunniyya.V. 1, p. 466; Diyarbekri,V. 1, p. 298; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahib,V. 5, p. 108.
[11]Abu Nuaym, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa, V. 1, p. 280; Abu’l-Fida, al-Bidaya wa’n-nihaya, V. 3, p. 119; Suyuti, Durru’l-mansur, V. 6,p. 133; Qastalani, Mawahibu’l-ladunniyya, V.1 , p. 467; Diyarbekri, Hamis, V. 1, p. 299; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahibu’l-ladunniyya, V. 5, p.110.
[12]Abu Nuaym, V. 1, p. 280; Abu’l-Farajc  Ibn Jawzi, al-Wafa, V.1, p. 272-273; Qurtubi, Tafsir, V. 1 7, p. 1 27; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3,p. 11 9-120; Suyuti, Durru’l-mansur, V. 6, p. 133; Qastalani, Mawahibu’l-ladunniyya, V. 1, p. 467; Diyarbekri, Hamis, V.1, p. 299; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahib, V. 5, p. 110.
[13]Tabari, Tafsir, V. 27, p. 85; Abu’l-Fida, al-Bidaya wa’n-nihaya, V. 3, p. 120; Suyuti, Durru’l-mansur, V. 6, p. 1 33.
[14]Abu Nuaym, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa, V. 1, p. 280-281; Abu’l-Fida, al-Bidaya wa’n-nihaya, V. 3, p. 119-120; Suyuti, Durru’l-man­sur, V. 6, p. 133.
[15]Qurtubi, Tafsir, V. 17, p. 127.
[16]Tabari, Tafsir, V. 27, p. 85; Abu Nuaym, V. 1, p. 281; Bayhaqi, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa, V. 2, p. 266; Wahidi, Asbabu’n-nuzul, p.268; Abu’l-Faraj  Ibn Jawzi, al-Wafa, V.1 , p. 273; Qurtubî, Tafsir, V. 17, p. 127; Dahabi, Tarikhu’l-Islam, p. 210; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 121; Qastalani, Mawahib, V. 1, p. 466; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 299; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahibu’l-ladunniyya, V. 5, p. 109.
[17]Abu Nuaym, Dalail, V. 1, p. 281; Bayhaqi,  Dalail, V. 2, p. 266; Vahidi, Asbabu’n-nuzul, p. 268; Qadi Iyad, Shifa, V. 1, p. 234; Qurtubi, Tafsir, V. 17, p. 127; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 121.
[18]Ahmad b. Hanbal, Musnad, V. 4, p. 82; Tirmidhi, Sunan, V. 5, p. 398; Ibn Sayyid, Uyunu’l-Athar, V. 1, p. 114; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 119; Qastalani, V. 1, p. 466; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 299; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahib, V. 5, p. 109.
[19]Ahmad b. Hanbal, V. 4, p. 82, Tirmidhi, V. 5, p. 398, Bayhaqi, V. 2, p. 266; Ibn Sayyid, V. 1, p. 114-115; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 119; Qastalani, V.1, p. 466; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 299; Zurqani, V. 5, p. 109.
[20]Ahmad b. Hanbal, V. 4, p. 82; Tirmidhi, V. 5, p. 398; Abu Nuaym, V. 1, p. 281; Bayhaqi, V. 2, p. 266; Ibn Sayyid, V. 1, p. 114-115;     Dahabi, p. 211; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 119-121; Qastalani, V. 1, p. 466; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 299; Zurqani, V.5, p. 109.
[21]Qadi Iyad, V. 1, p. 235; Ibn Sayyid, V. 1, p. 114.
[22]Bayhaqi, V. 2, p. 267; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 121; Qastalani, V. 1, p. 467; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 299; Zurqani, Sharh Mawahib, V.5, p. 109-110.
[23]Tabari, Tafsir, V. 27, p. 85; Bayhaqi, V. 2, p. 267; Qadi Iyad, V. 1, p. 235; Qurtubi, Tafsir, V. 1 7. p. 127.
[24]Abu Nuaym , V. 1, p. 281; Bayhaqi, V. 2, p. 267; Abu’l-Fida, V. 3, p. 121; Qastalani, V. 1, p. 467; Diyarbekri, V. 1, p. 299; Zurqani, V. 5, p. 109-110; Tabari, V. 27, p. 85; Abu’l-Faraj, V. 1, p. 273; Sharh Mawahib, V. 5, p. 110; Abu Nuaym, V. 1, p. 281; Qadi Iyad, V. 1, p. 235; Dhahabi, Tarikhu’l-Islam, p. 211; Abu Nuaym, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa, V. 1, p. 281.
[25]Tirmidhi, Sunan, V. 5, p. 397; Tabari, Tafsir, V. 27, p. 87; Qurtubi, Tafsir, V. 17, p. 1 27.
[26]Tirmidhi, Tafsiru’l-Qur’an 54; Musnad 3:165; at-Tabari, Jamiu’l-Bayan 27:84-85; al-Qurtubi, al-Jami’ li Ahkami’l-Qur’an 17:126; al-Bayhaqi, Dalailu’n-nubuwwa 2:268.
[27]al-Qamar, 54/1-8.
[28] al-Qamar, 54/1.
[29] al-Qamar, 54/2.
[30]al-Iji, Kitabu’l-Mawaqif 3:405-406; al-Amidi, Ghayatu’l-Maram 1:356; Ibn Taymiyya al-Jawabu’s-Sahih 1:414; 2:44; ash-Shahristani, al-Farq Bayna’l-Firaq 1:313;at-Taftazani, Sharhu’l-Maqasid 5:17.
[31]alQamar, 54/1.
[32]see al-Wahidi, al-Wajiz fi Tafsiri’l-Kitabi’l-Aziz 1:370; at-Tabari, Jamiu’l-Bayan 2784-87; al-Qurtubi, al-Jami’ li Ahkami’l-Qur’an 17:126-127; as-Suyuti, ad-Durru’l-Mansur 7:672.
[33] tariq Abdullah Ibn Mes’ud; Bukhari, Tafsir (54) 1; Muslim, Sifatu’l-Munafiqin 44-45; Tirmidhi, Tafsir 54. tariq Abdullah Ibn Umar; Muslim, Sifatu’l-Munafiqin, 45. Tirmidhi, Tafsir (54) 1; Muslim, Sifatu’l-Munafiqin 48. tariq Abdullah Ibni Abbas; Bukhari, Manaqib 27, Manaqibu’l-Ansar 36, Tafsir (54) 1; Muslim, Sifatu’l-Munafiqin 48. tariq Anas Ibn Malik; Bukhari, Manaqib 27, Tafsir (54) 1, Manakqibu’l-Ansar 36; Muslim, Sifatu’l-Munafiqin 46; Tirmidhi, Tafsiru Surah 54; tariq Huzayfa Ibnu’l-Yaman; at-Tabari, Jamiu’l-Bayan 27:51; Abdurrazzaq, al-Musannaf 3:193-194; Abu Nuaym, Hilyatu’l-Awliya 1:280-281. tariq Jubayr Ibn Mut’im; Tirmidhi Tafsiru Surah 54; Musnad 4:82; Ibn Hibban, as-Sahih 14:422.
[34]Abu Dawud, Fitan wa Malahim 1; Tirmidhi, Fitan 7; Ibn Majah, Fitan 7.
[35]Muhammed Hamidullah, İslam Peygamberi, p.126, 234. p.
[36] http://www.nasa.gov/centers/ames/news/features/2009/Google_Moon.html

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