Channel: Jamal Badawi
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recom peace beyond you. Welcome back to another episode of Islam focus. Today we have our ninth program and our discussion of the Quran and modern sciences. We'll be continuing with our very interesting discussion of human reproduction in the Quran. I have joined me on the program as usual, Dr. Jamal battery of St. Mary's University or Jamal assalamu Aleikum money from cinema looking forward to another interesting program on this
subject. Perhaps Have you very quickly before we get into today's discussion, highlight the main points we touched on on our program last week. Certainly, the first point we discussed last time was to discuss what the Quran mentioned in Surah 13, about the increase and decrease in the home of uterus. And he indicated again, that the word in the Quran does not seem to refer only to the changes due to pregnancy, but also to something that has been discovered recently or relatively recently, with respect to the change of the thickness of the uterus, in the various stages of the development of the female, and also to the increase and decrease during the monthly cycle.
Secondly, we focused also on the role of the male in the process of fertilization and research what the Quran mentioned in Surah 76, about the creation of the human from a Nottingham surgeon in Arabic, which means you mingle liquid. And again, he indicated that this refers to the meaning of the contribution of both the husband and the wife. And we indicated that this process of fertilization using both that is the what you call today, the ovum and the sperm is something that has not been quite understood except in the 19th century. And that was more than 1000 years after the revelation of the Quran. There are amazing other things pertaining to fertilization, which we
have also discussed from the scientific standpoint. And the last point we were talking about is that out of nearly 200 to 300 million
sperms emitted in a single intimate relationship between husband and wife and the one of them one sperm normally
there's another very interesting question that is triggered by our discussion and that which has to do with the fact that there are means of sperm, hundreds of millions of sperm and yet there's only one of them. But why is that and why is it that the the ovum is so much larger than the finish the sperm? Okay, I want to start with the sperms, even though they are plentiful the number. First of all, not all of them are good enough for fertilization, an estimated 20% are not good for fertilization to start with. Secondly, another
group of stones or number of them, perhaps even another 20%
would normally die within just a few hours a period which is not quite enough to reach the organ and fertilize it. The other reason is that, as we know that our two philippian tubes, and the ovum is emitted once a month from one side the next month from the other side. So it's quite possible also that a number of sperms would go to the wrong fallopian tube after it gets through the uterus, then it might go to the wrong fallopian tube where there is no organ available for fertilization. That means that the number that reaches the organ actually will be in the hundreds rather than in the hundreds of millions. If you might recall from the previous program when you had the slide showing
the the ovum and the sperms around it. We said only about four to 500 sperms reach actually the oven and then out of this only one
is admitted others just disintegrate and that disintegration actually soften the roll and help the chosen sperm if you want to enter or to pierce the ovum.
As far as the question of the size and why the ovum is much larger. The reason is that she acts also as a host
Because in the initial stage of the primary sense, beginning of division,
the organ provides actually the nutrients needed until such time that the very good as they call it comes and start to clink to the wall of the uterus and gets its injection, its nutrition through the, through the mother. So in the initial stage, they need some nutrition, that's why the
ovum is, is considerably larger, there's also just make a footnote here. There's also a sort of process of selection also, in the case of the oven, for example, it is estimated that the ability as a fetus, given the fetus, male, female fetus, may have as many as 6 million orphans,
or over and then by the time of course, they should become adolescent, most of these will die in only 30,000 remains. And out of this only about maybe 400 become functional levels that comes throughout the adult life of the female. And again, not each one of this 100 get fertilized, as you know, so again, there you go. So this process of selection of selection, but of course, the selection, in the case of the sperms is really
one out of hundreds of millions at
this or anything in the Quran about fertilization, which was not known or more commonly known at the time of its revelation. When dancers first is yes, in fact, there is a clear indication in the Quran that only a very small amount, very thin amount of the semen, if you will, is responsible for the fertilization and not sure that in view of the discussion that you had in the early programs on human reproduction was not known until perhaps the 19th century and later,
as far as the texts of the Quran that seem to get this indication, referring in more than one place, for example, in Surah 75 in passage
Alinea culatta can in many union about the human it says was the human not a typical horse might say a very small drop or tiny drop of semen which is poured out. And this is not the only place in the Quran when I mentioned is made but it's only part of the semen or the sperm which fertilizes the organ or is responsible for creation.
For example, in Surah 16. In passage for that, again, it says that the human was created from a trickle or a tiny drop of singing, the same kind of expression was repeated. Now in understanding the expressions in the Quran, there are two key terms that are quite helpful. One is that the Quran use the term not.
And not literally means something that dribbles or chuckles something very tiny, actually, they give examples of that, of what happens when you empty a container, a water container, for example, after an empty every
last drop of water, they may still remain very tiny thing and the bottom of the of the container. So this is the word the word not I mean something very, very tiny, very
small. The second term used in the Quran is the term many and many the closest translation actually be any semen or the fluid, the male fluid. Now, the text of the Quran says that the human is created from this not far from that driven of or out of the semen which means that not all the semen is needed, really for socialization. It doesn't fertilize because there's only one sperm as we have indicated earlier, and we said that this is not really something that was known scientifically in the seventh century of the Common Era. But there's another idea in the Quran passage, which is even more amazing. And I was talking to a sister who was an American doctor on this issue and she was
really struck by the expression of the Quran. And that is the term chanela. In the Quran, it says
in Surah eight and tested 32
sigma Johannes Lahu. In Sudan, it may mean that after the human was created from just the original pair of male and female, Allah made the progeny of the first cup and that is from the sanella, which means extract
Have a despised liquid dispose liquid in reference to the semen. But the striking expression here is the term extract. Because literally in Arabic, Sudan, I mean something that's extracted or the best of the thing, which means that not all of it is something's chosen and selected out of that
small amount of liquid. And
this kind of understanding is not really stretching the meaning of the forehand at all. Because as we know, the saying of Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him actually, is the explanation of the Quran, because you're receiving also revelation. And in one of his saying,
he said very clearly,
that is to say that the question is not created from the whole of the fluid, he is referring to the fluid of the human of the male, that is to say that in the semen, and this information definitely is rather amazing.
In the state of knowledge,
I'd like to turn now to another aspect of human reproduction and lattice in an interesting area of the
determination of the sex of the embryo. Is there any reference to that in the ground, this is another stunning, amazing carry also what the Quran speaks about. Because the Quran is clear that the sex
of the embryo is determined actually, by the sperm, that is by the main contribution, the main site.
And this kind of text that we find in the Quran can only be appreciated if we have some
understanding of the background, from the scientific standpoint as to how the sex of the fetus or embryo is determined.
Because I'm sure many of the viewers perhaps might need this kind of clarification to start with.
To begin with the human body, the basic structure of the human body is composed of cells, as you know, billions and billions of those cells. Now, in each human cell, there is a nucleus.
Inside that nucleus, there are 46. chromosomes, the chromosomes are simply things which carry the hereditary characteristic of the human. Now, when the human said, as you know, the cells keep dividing. When the human cell begins to divide, this chromosomes become distinct, as we see in this
illustration, that you could see
23 pairs of those chromosomes, actually each two of them are
joined together. So it took you about 346, in the form of 23 pairs of those chromosomes. Now, in 1953, two scientists by the name of Crick and Watson discovered the chemical composition of those chromosomes. And actually, as a result, they won the Nobel Prize for the research, which is a very important and revolutionary discovery and the study of genetics.
What they found is that the,
the chemical basis for those chromosomes
are basically four. Sorry, and the basic
kind of construction is composed of a nucleic acid called DNA.
Now, this acid act actually as the brain more or less, that controls the activities of the cell, it's almost like the band understand or experience.
Okay, could you develop that a little bit more so that we get a little for appreciation of why the DNA is so important, when it's not important that Allah created this
nucleic acid in such a way that it can really control all the activities of the cell.
It's just like a computer program, really, the computer program for the cell. And as scientists say, it has a
very complex sort of secrets of codes, which determine the activities of the cell. Now, as you know, the human body is Oracle
Positive sent however, we have so many different organs.
And what determines that one cell becomes a liver cell, and I sell an eardrum sell a house and
this are basically the characteristics which are determined through this DNA so that the DNA actually determined that this cell shall grow in that particular form or this color or that particular characteristic. Furthermore, the DNA, that nucleic acid determines also the types of enzymes which are to be secreted the characteristics of those enzymes. But the strange thing also about it is that it is programmed timewise. In other words, there are certain functions of the cell that take place only in a given period of time. For example, a baby for example, a baby boy may have the testicles. But again, God or Allah subhanaw taala, created that code in the DNA so that it would
not start producing sperms, for example, except in one particular point of time, that's when
the boy becomes an adolescent male, the same thing for the female ovaries in the hair growth for example. So, these are not only determination of the the way the essential function, but also the time when it should grow in a particular manner or perform certain
functions. It is control applied by the DNA is achieved actually through another messenger. Another nucleic acid, they referred to as the RNA standard for rival nucleic acids that are in a actually carries the orders, if you will, the commands or messages from the DNA to the Senate, so that it can start producing whatever designs or whatever specific form or forms have many 1000s and 1000s of proteins, that the cell may be able to produce chips. It's a highly complex thing, I hope I tried to put it in a reasonably simplified form, but it's basically this sort of control of activities. Basically, I suppose many people would wonder how
something that's so tiny as a DNA could determine such complex functions and operations in all the complex combinations of proteins.
Yes, it's indeed stunning. But perhaps one approximate way of explaining it would be to raise a similar question, how could the silicon computer ship very tiny one, determine also the program and the way the computer for example, perform certain operations? The main reason is that again, there are certain codes or instructions, if you will, that are contained in testing. Tiny as it may be, of course, we're not comparing the computer chips with the nucleic acids, but something very, very microscopic,
just with approximation to help understand it, but the other way also of looking at it is that as we mentioned earlier, that that nucleic acids, the DNA
is composed of four unit regeneus or nitrogenous bases. Okay. Now, as Dr. Hamad bar explained, he said, suppose you take each of these nitrogen nitrogenous bases as a letter, it means that you have four letters answered, if you wanted to compose various words of these letters, that's three letter words, you could have as many as 64 words.
Now, each of this region is basis control also
20 amino acids. So when you have that combination, you can have almost almost infinite, not infinite, but almost infinite number of combinations that you could have. And that's why you could have 1000s of 1000s of possible types
of proteins just with this basic nitrogenous base.
To put it in a simpler way that anyone can relate to. If you go to any library, for example, you may find millions and millions of books and 1000s of topics. And there are 10s of 1000s of words. Even though for example, in the English language, there's only a few letters you were talking about 27 or 2627 alphabets. But because of this various combinations of those letters together, you can have 10s of 1000s
of different words. It's a strange thing about this secret of creation and the the code that directs everything in the proper
function, proper timing that shows the hand of the Creator. And all of this. Going back to the question, the termination of the sex will go back to the to the chromosomes that you were talking about earlier, how do they determine the sex of the embryo? Okay, maybe you can go back to the notion that we just discussed earlier that the whole body is composed of cells each cell is composed of, or inside each cell in the nucleus inside the nucleus, there are 46 chromosomes. And as indicated earlier, again, this chromosomes when the cell begins to the right, that becomes a strength and they appear in pairs, just to begin with. Now, it should be indicated here, that when
we relate this notion of chromosomes and the role to the process of fertilization, then we should bring to mind that the ovum and the sperm, both of them which are responsible, of course, for the initial development of the of the embryo are both cells, maybe they are special cells, but essentially what they are, is they are sense resulting from a sort of cell division. Okay. But the strange thing, again, is that the female cell is slightly different from the male cell,
the female cell
includes our contents. In the normal way, the 46 chromosomes are 23 pairs. But only one of those pairs is responsible for the sex of the individual.
In other words, the 23rd pair of chromosomes in the case of a female is known as xX xX, usually, X chromosome is used to refer to female Y chromosome is used to refer to named characteristics. So in the case of the female cell, that 23rd pair of chromosomes is both x, that's x x, right? Now, in the men's chromosome, on the other hand, that's the 23rd pair of chromosomes and in the end the male cell,
we find that it's different. It is x y, in other words, half of it, or one of those chromosomes, that
is an X chromosome, which means it carries the female nature, the other one is y, which means it carries the main characteristic. Now, when the female cell divides, in order to produce the album, because the album actually come as
a result of the division of the sense inside the ovaries of the of the female, you find that infinite splits into half, then each half would have 23 chromosomes.
Okay, but since the 23rd pair of chromosomes are both xx or female, that means you'd have all female, in other words all over produced by the female carry the female characteristic, okay. Now, on the other hand, the when the male cell divides to produce the sperm, as we mentioned before this takes place in the testicle. When that division takes place, the situation is different. Because what happened is that the 23rd chromosome, which is responsible for the sex of the embryo is not symmetric. In other words, there is x and y, as you see in that illustration, in the right hand corner, you'll notice that the last pair in the very lower part is actually not exactly the same,
not identical, one of them and talking about the lower ones that are apart from each other. One of them is or carries the x
characteristic that is the female characteristic, the other one carries the Y characteristic, so it is x y. Now when that cell divides, it means that one of those new cells will contain the X chromosome, that is the one that carries the female characteristic, whereas the other half or the other cell would carry the other half which is the Y chromosome because you see the 23 pairs just divided so that you have 23 single chromosomes in each sperm. This results in something drastically different from the organs
of the female, it means that not all sperms are the same, the same you see all over
our own semen, but not all sperms carry the same characteristics. So half of the sperm roughly, male Exactly, exactly. More or less, you can say half of them carry me and characteristic half carry in a practice. now in the process of fertilization, what happened is that the nuclear of both the sperm and the over the oven united, so the chromosomes get next. So you get again 23 pairs rather than just 20 single ones. So it makes a big difference now. And the only difference here is determined by the sperm. Because if a sperm that carries the female characteristic that is the X chromosome, unite with the ovum, which always has the X chromosome that is up to be what in a female that's xx.
Whereas if the sperm which carries the Y chromosome that is the main characteristic, united with that will be open, which always carries the x. That means you have x y or y x. And that would be a male and this something that has been proven by science that it is the sperm actually not being open, which is responsible for the determination of the of the sex?
Well, the discussion that we've had so far has provided some very helpful background. But how do these scientific discoveries relate to what the Quran mentioned over 1400 years ago, when it moved them when the passage in the Quran, when it talks about the determination of male and female sex, it ties in this expression with the contribution of the male coach, you want to just to clarify the issue, for example, in Surah, 53, in passages 45, to 46.
we looked at him,
that he Allah did create impairs male and female from a small quantity of semen, which is poured out of semen or sperm which is poured out. Notice here again, the use of the term money or semen is definitely a reference to not the key net contribution, but to the mere contribution Exactly. In the same time, the passage is thoughts about the creation of people in pairs, male and female, so the time is there quite clearly between the sex, male or female, and the contribution of the male, not the female.
And this is not the only passage in the Quran, which make this kind of time. For example, another interesting citation in Surah 75, especially from 36 on astable. In Santa Anita cassava, does the human think that he or she will be left without purpose was he or she not a small quantity, or a small drop of semen, which is emitted or poured out? Then he or she became something that cleans, then did Allah session him or her into proportion? And he made the two sexes again, if it's the male, and the female,
has he not the power to bring the death to life? Now, there are interesting things here on this particular passage, one again, that it ties between the sex of male or female with the main contribution like the previous message. Secondly, it relates that also to the returning of the dead because people say How could billions of people die, and then each one come as an individual in the Day of Judgment, and that might remind us what is what we mentioned last time that there are also hundreds of billions of spins but only one fertilized egg so it draws our attention that Allah is able to return each person as an individual in the Day of Judgment.
Similarly, in the Quran, also, we read in Surah, certifying that Allah created us from dust that is initially and then from a small drop of sperm or semen, and then he made us as well as in tears, male and female. So in all of these we find a clear evidence in the Quran, that it is the male that determine the sex of the fetus, something that definitely was not known at the time of the revelation of the Quran. For sure Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him in the seventh century of the Common Era did not have any electronic microscopes to examine these
things very much, brother Jamal. I've enjoyed the program immensely. I hope that you enjoyed it as well. We want to thank you for watching. Join us next week Assalamu alaikum Peace be on you