Darkness Within The Depths Of The Ocean

Today, we know that human beings are not able to dive more then 40/50 meters into the depth of the oceans without the support of specially designed equipment.

A submarine that could navigate under water was first built around 1620. Since then Submarines developed at a fast pace. The development of submarines made possible the study of life in the depths of the oceans. Humans were able to gather data which had been possible thanks to the means developed in recent centuries without which a man could not dive to a depth more than 40/50 meters.

The bottom of the seas and oceans are pitch black. While broad daylight reigns on the surface, 200 meters below it is again completely pitch black. At the time of the revelation of the Qur’an, humans had no knowledge about the darkness in the depth of the seas and oceans. The Qur’an mentions the depth of the oceans within a verse. No human would have known this over 1400 years ago without the use of technology and special equipment which exists today.

The Qur’an mentions over 1400 years ago:

“Or is like the darkness in a deep sea. It is covered by waves, above which are waves, above which clouds. Darkness, one above another. If a man stretches out his hand, he can hardly see it. For any to whom God gives not light, there is no light.” (Qur’an, 24:40)

Translations from others:
Sahih International: Or [they are] like darknesses within an unfathomable sea which is covered by waves, upon which are waves, over which are clouds – darknesses, some of them upon others. When one puts out his hand [therein], he can hardly see it. And he to whom Allah has not granted light – for him there is no light.
Pickthall: Or as darkness on a vast, abysmal sea. There covereth him a wave, above which is a wave, above which is a cloud. Layer upon layer of darkness. When he holdeth out his hand he scarce can see it. And he for whom Allah hath not appointed light, for him there is no light.
Yusuf Ali: Or (the Unbelievers’ state) is like the depths of darkness in a vast deep ocean, overwhelmed with billow topped by billow, topped by (dark) clouds: depths of darkness, one above another: if a man stretches out his hands, he can hardly see it! for any to whom Allah giveth not light, there is no light!
Shakir: Or like utter darkness in the deep sea: there covers it a wave above which is another wave, above which is a cloud, (layers of) utter darkness one above another; when he holds out his hand, he is almost unable to see it; and to whomsoever Allah does not give light, he has no light.
Muhammad Sarwar: Or it (the deeds of the unbelievers) are like the darkness of a deep, stormy sea with layers of giant waves, covered by dark clouds. It is darkness upon darkness whereby even if one stretches out his hands he can not see them. One can have no light unless God gives him light.
Mohsin Khan: Or [the state of a disbeliever] is like the darkness in a vast deep sea, overwhelmed with a great wave topped by a great wave, topped by dark clouds, darkness, one above another, if a man stretches out his hand, he can hardly see it! And he for whom Allah has not appointed light, for him there is no light.
Arberry: or they are as shadows upon a sea obscure covered by a billow above which is a billow above which are clouds, shadows piled one upon another; when he puts forth his hand, wellnigh he cannot see it. And to whomsoever God assigns no light, no light has he.

Everyone knows waves occur above the ocean and we have the impression that the waves only break on the surface and that the water below is calm.

The above verse mentions:

“by waves, above which are waves,”

These waves were discovered in 1900 and are as described in the Qur’an over 1400 years ago. The dark depths of the sea contains these waves topped by the waves on the surface.

These internal waves cover the deep waters of seas and oceans because deep water has a higher density than the water above it.
Internal waves act like surface waves. They can break, just like surface waves. Internal waves cannot be seen by the human eye, but they can be detected by studying temperature or salinity changes at a given location.

The statements in the Qur’an run absolutely parallel to the above explanation. Without research, one can only see the waves on the surface of the sea. It is impossible for one to know about the internal waves beneath the sea. Yet, within the Qur’an, God draws our attention to another type of wave that occurs within the depths of the oceans.

In the verse, we also observe the motion of light. The sun’s rays are refracted as they strike the clouds and lose some of their luminescence. The rays that reach the surface of the seas diffract as they continue their journey in the spectrum, the first layer
holding onto the yellow, while the second holds onto the green; in the last layer, the blue disappears. So, as the journey goes further downwards, light vanishes. The sunlight refracted in the clouds, the light that vanishes in the levels of oceans, completely disappears in the depths of oceans and cannot light the bottom. Not even fish can see their way unless they themselves generate some form of light.

Another amazing verse within the Qur’an

God knows best

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