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A Chain of Miracles - Harun Yahya

A CHAIN OF MIRACLES



CHAPTER -1
MIRACLES IN THE CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE

THE INCREDIBLE ORDER THAT CAME WITH THE EXPLOSION

The whole scientific community acknowledges that the universe we live in began approximately 15 billion years ago with a huge explosion popularly called "the Big Bang" and expanded to take on its present state and dimensions. Space, galaxies, planets, the Sun, the Earth-in short, everything that combines to make up the universe was formed as a consequence.

Here lies a great secret: Since the Big Bang was an explosion, matter would be expected to have scattered itself randomly across space, as atoms or sub-atomic particles. But not so; on the contrary, the universe in all its incredible order emerged instead. "Randomly" scattered atoms concentrated in certain places and bonded to form stars, solar systems and galaxies-certainly an extraordinary situation. And to use an analogy used by scientist, even more extraordinary than a hand grenade thrown into a wheat field with the result that the effect of the blast collects the cut wheat, ties it into uniform bales, and piles up the bales in an orderly fashion.

Professor Fred Hoyle, who opposed the Big Bang theory for many years, expressed his wonder as follows:

The big bang theory holds that the universe began with a single explosion. Yet, . . . an explosion merely throws matter apart, while the big bang has mysteriously produced the opposite effect- with matter clumping together in the form of galaxies. 5


An explosion always disperses and disorders matter.

Obviously, such an explosion that contained the whole of the universe's mass, from which the most spectacular order emerged, can only be explained by a miracle. Astrophysicist Alan Sandage, winner of the Crawford prize in astronomy, explains the situation as follows:

I find it quite improbable that such order came out of chaos. There has to be some organizing principle. God to me is a mystery but is the explanation for the miracle of existence6

As scientists state, it is a fantastic miracle that atoms should bond in the most appropriate ways to create the infinitely coordinated order of the universe, comprising countless trillions of planets, billions of stars in billions of galaxies, and all without the slightest hitch. This is a miracle shown to us by the infinitely powerful God.

He to Whom the kingdom of the heavens and the Earth belongs. He does not have a son and He has no partner in the Kingdom. He created everything and determined it most exactly. (Qur'an, 25:2)

A MIRACLE IN THE UNIVERSE'S EXPANSION RATE


The universe we live in emerged some 15 billion years ago, as the result of a giant explosion from a single point. The result of this huge explosion, which contained all the matter in the universe, was the present, extraordinarily regular cosmos that expanded to assume its present form.

The universe's expansion is critical to the formation of its present state. Had it been a fraction slower, the whole of the universe would have contracted once again and collapsed on itself, before the fledgling solar systems had any chance to develop. Had its rate of expansion been only a fraction faster, matter would have been dispersed irretrievably in the vastness of space, unable to form neither stars nor galaxies.

Either situation would mean that living things, let alone we humans, could not exist.

However, neither scenario happened. Thanks to the actual rate of expansion, the universe as we know it emerged. But how sensitive is this rate, actually?

Paul Davies, a renowned Professor of Mathematics and Physics at Australia's Adelaide University, made a series of calculations in order to answer this question. The results he obtained were astonishing. According to Davies, had the expansion rate following the Big Bang been different by one in a billion billions (1/1018), the universe could not have formed! Another way of stating this figure is: "0,000000000000000001" Any divergence of such a tiny scale would have meant no universe at all. Davies interprets this result as follows:

Careful measurements put the rate of expansion very close to a critical value at which the universe will just escape its own gravity and expand forever. A little slower and the cosmos would collapse, a little faster and the cosmic material would have long ago completely dispersed. It is interesting to ask precisely how delicately the rate of expansion has been "fine tuned" to fall on this narrow dividing line between two catastrophes. If at time I S (by which the time pattern of expansion was already firmly established) the expansion rate had differed from its actual value by more than 10-18, it would have been sufficient to throw the delicate balance out. The explosive vigour of the universe is thus matched with almost unbelievable accuracy to its gravitating power. The big bang was not evidently, any old bang, but an explosion of exquisitely arranged magnitude. 7

An article published in the journal Science describes this extraordinary rate of expansion at the beginning of the universe:


The speed of the universe's expansion is a most sensitive figure. Were it as little as one billion billionth different, the universe we now live in could never have formed. This is like placing a pencil on its sharp end in such a way that it will still be upright a billion years later. Moreover, as the universe expands, this balance grows even more delicate.

If the density of the universe was a little bit more, in that case, according to Einstein's relativity theory, the universe would not be expanding due to the attraction forces of atomic particles but contracting, ultimately diminishing to a spot. If the initial density had been a little bit less, then the universe would rapidly be expanding, but in this case, atomic particles would not be attracting each other and no stars and no galaxies would ever have formed. Consequently, man would never come into existence! According to the calculations, the difference between the initial real density of the universe and its critical density, which is unlikely to occur, is less than one percent's one quadrillion. This is similar to place a pencil in a position so that it can stand on its sharp end even after one billion years… Furthermore, as the universe expands, this equilibrium becomes more delicate. 8

Regardless of how much Stephen Hawking tried to ascribe the origins of the universe to chance, he had to concede the extraordinary fact of its universe's expansion rate in his book, A Brief History of Time:

There is a crucial balance between the density of the universe and the speed at which it is expanding.

If the rate of expansion one second after the big bang had been smaller by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have recollapsed before it ever reached its present size. 9

Alan Guth, the father of the inflationary universe model developed as an extension to the standard Big Bang model of the universe, calculated in recent years an even more perplexing result for the fine-tuning of the universe's rate of expansion. He states that the margin of error was 1 in 1055. 10

What, then, does such a remarkable equilibrium indicate? Obviously this instance of "fine-tuning" cannot possibly be explained by chance; it must prove an intelligent design. Despite being a materialist, Paul Davies concedes:

It is hard to resist that the present structure of the universe, apparently so sensitive to minor alterations in the numbers, has been rather carefully thought out… The seemingly miraculous concurrence of numerical values that nature has assigned to her fundamental constants must remain the most compelling evidence for an element of cosmic design. 11

As we have seen, this conclusive data obtained by scientific means, led materialist Paul Davies to concede-whether he liked it or not-that the universe is the product of intelligent design. Or, in other words, that the universe was created.

DISTANCES BETWEEN COSMIC OBJECTS

As we know, our Planet Earth is part of a solar system of nine planets, the Earth being the third planet orbiting our medium sized star.

First, let's understand the scale of this system. The Sun's diameter is 103 times the Earth's. To enable a comparison, image the Earth (whose true diameter is 12,200 kilometers, or 7,500 miles) as the size of a marble. In comparison, our Sun would be a sphere twice the size of a football. But what is really interesting is the distance between the two. On this scale, it would be 280 meters (920 feet). Planets at the outer reaches of the system would be many kilometers away from the sphere representing the Sun.

Yet the solar system's huge size is actually modest when placed in context with the rest of our Milky Way Galaxy. It contains an estimated 250 billion stars (or suns), the nearest of which is Alpha Centauri. If Earth and Sun are 280 meters (920 feet) apart, as in the above example, then on the same scale, Alpha Centauri would be a whopping 78,000 kilometers (48,500 miles) away.

Let's shrink this scale down until the Earth becomes a dust particle barely visible to the naked eye. The Sun would then be the size of a walnut, three meters away from the Earth. On this new scale, Alpha Centauri would be 640 kilometers (400 miles) away. Yet the Milky Way Galaxy consists of 250 billion stars with even more phenomenal distances in between them. Our solar system is a mere speck in this spiral galaxy.


If we consider the Earth as the size of a marble, and the distance between it and the Sun as 280 meters (920 feet), then the star Alpha Centauri should be placed 78,000 kilometers (48,500 miles) away!

The Milky Way itself covers a relatively minute area within the universe, when we consider there are approximately 300 billion other such galaxies besides it, and that the distances between them are millions of times greater than between our Sun and Alpha Centauri.

The diffusion of heavenly objects throughout the universe and the spaces between them are necessary conditions for life on Earth. The distances between stars are arranged by cosmic forces in such a way as to make possible life on Earth. These distances have a direct effect on planets' orbits and even their very existence. Were they any closer, gravitational attraction between stars would destabilize the planets' orbits, causing extreme fluctuation in temperatures. Had they been any farther, the distribution of heavier elements, shooting into space from supernovas, would have never reached the density required to form planets like our solid Earth.

The existing distances between stars are just right to permit the existence of solar systems like ours.

Michael Denton, a renowned Professor of Biochemistry, writes in his book Nature's Destiny:

The distances between supernovae and indeed between all stars is critical for other reasons. The distance between stars in our galaxy is about 30 million miles. If this distance was much less, planetary orbits would be destabilized. If it was much more, then the debris thrown out by a supernova would be so diffusely distributed that planetary systems like our own would in all probability never form. If the cosmos is to be a home for life, then the flickering of the supernovae must occur at a very precise rate and the average distance between them, and indeed between all stars, must be very close to the actual observed figure. 12


In the vast depths of space, our Earth occupies no more room than a grain of sand on a beach. The universe is too large for human minds to comprehend. Bodies in space have been created at the ideal distances from one another. In our galaxy, the slightest increase or reduction in the average distances between heavenly bodies would mean that no planet would exist that is suitable for life.

In The Symbiotic Universe, astronomer George Greenstein writes about these mind-boggling distances:

Had the stars been somewhat closer, astrophysics would not have been so very different. The fundamental physical processes occurring within stars, nebulas, and the like would have proceeded unchanged. The appearance of our galaxy as seen from some far-distant vantage point would have been the same. About the only difference would have been the view of the night time sky from the grass on which I lie, which would have been yet richer with stars. And oh, yes-one more small change: There would have been no me to do the viewing…All that waster space! On the other hand, in this very waste lies our safety. 13

The universe's vast empty spaces, Greenstein explains, determine the value of physical variables that make human life on Earth possible and also prevent the Earth from colliding with other cosmic objects traveling through the universe.

In short, the distribution of stars in the universe is exactly as they must be for human existence on Earth. The vast empty spaces are not coincidental-they were created.

In many verses of the Qur'an, God reveals that the heavens and the Earth have been created for a purpose:

We did not create the heavens and Earth and everything between them, except with truth. The Hour is certainly coming, so turn away graciously. (Qur'an, 15:85)

We did not create the heavens and the Earth and everything between them as a game. We did not create them except with truth but most of them do not know it. (Qur'an, 44:38-39)


 

    

5. Fred Hoyle, The Intelligent Universe, London, 1984, pp. 184-185.
6. J.N. Willford, "Sizing up the Cosmos: An Astronomers Quest," New York Times, March 12, 1991, p. B9, emphasis added.
7. Paul Davies, Superforce, p. 184, emphasis added.
8. Bilim ve Teknik (Science and Technics ), no. 201, p. 16, emphasis added.
9. Stephen Hawking, A Brief History Of Time, Bantam Press, London: 1988, pp. 121-125, emphasis added.
10. A.H. Guth, "Inflationary Universe: a possible solution to the horizon and flatness problems," in Physical Review D, 23. (1981), p. 348.
11. Paul Davies, God and the New Physics. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1983, p. 189.
12. Michael Denton, Nature's Destiny, The New York: The Free Press, 1998, p. 11.
13. George Greenstein, The Symbiotic Universe, New York: William Morrow, 1998, p. 21, emphasis added.