The Earth revolves according to the Quran?

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The Earth revolves according to the Quran?


It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor does the night outstrip the day.They all revolve, each in an heavenly path. [36:40]



Accordingly, the Night and the Day would also have each an DISTINCT trajectory.


Immediatly, we think that this is a mere observation made by ancient people, that night/day revolve around the Earth:

However, this doesn't seem consistent with the verse, because, in this interpretation, their path is the same.


But if one interpret the verse with our current science:

Night and Day are respectively the darkened and lightened part of the Earth. So, as the Earth revolves around the Sun, night and day revolve also around the Sun.

This time, we can notice that Night and Day each have a DISTINCT path, which is more compatible with the verse.



THUS, since the 1st interpretation is incompatible with the verse whereas the 2nd one is, does the verse means (by night and day) nothing but that the Earth revolves?

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not that it matters in the

not that it matters in the least whether this verse talks about heliocentrism or not, since the quran has tons of other decidedly unscientific assertions, such as the existence of jinni, but i contend it clearly says the sun has an orbit.  in this verse, the sun is clearly part of the pronoun "they all." 

a. yusuf ali renders the verse, "each (just) swims along in (its own) orbit" and in his commentary says, "How beautiful the rounded courses of the planets and heavenly bodies [i.e., the sun and moon, not "night and day"]  are described, 'swimming' through space, with perfectly smooth motion!" 

n.j. dawood renders it, "The sun is not allowed to overtake the moon, nor does the night outpace the day.  Each in its own orbit runs." 

now, i'm not conversant in arabic, but in the translation you give, as well as the other two i've just quoted, by all the conventions of english syntax, the sun is clearly meant to be included in the pronouns "they all" or "each," which are identified as having orbits.  if this is not the case in the original arabic, this could have easily been made clear to the english reader in any number of ways, but it isn't. 

therefore, the translators were either incredibly inept (and i don't know who you're using, but yusuf ali and dawood are both extremely respected), or else, like so many biblical apologists, someone's twisting the obvious meaning of the quran to fit into modern scientific cosmology in a pathetic attempt at apologetics.  i put my money on the latter.


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Hi! In fact, the word 'all'



In fact, the word 'all' in the verse includes, according to the famous exegete Ibn Kathir,  "the Sun, the Moon, the Night and the Day"


(They all float, each in an orbit.) means, night and day, the sun and the moon, all of them are floating, i.e., revolving, in their orbits in the heaven. This was the view of Ibn `Abbas, `Ikrimah, Ad-Dahhak, Al-Hasan, Qatadah and `Ata' Al-Khurasani. Ibn `Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, and others among the Salaf said, "In an orbit like the arc of a spinning wheel.''      source:


But exegetes as Al Jalalayn and Ibn Abbas, understand 'all' as Sun, Moon and stars/planets, instead of night/day. This view is the same as your translators, so

 it's possible that "Earth moving in the Quran" idea is based on a loose translation.


The verse may be confusing because of the fact that the arabic word 'kulun' ('all' in English) is a plural word not a dual one. So, since the verse talks about Sun, Moon, night and day, one might erroneously think that it includes night and day.