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Currently I am working on a philosophy paper, exploring the correlation between cause and effect, or in other words how present knowledge is wholly dependent upon past knowledge.

I was thinking of applying some reference or explanation based on Islam. Is there anything I can talk about, with respect to the hadiths or maybe something from the Quran with regards to the past and present dependency?

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    Allah (ﷻ) said he "taught man that which he knew not" (Qur'an 96:5). So all of our present knowledge is dependent upon and builds upon that which Allah (ﷻ) taught us in the beginning. SubhanAllah. – Muslimah Oct 23 '19 at 11:57
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How is present knowledge wholly dependent upon past knowledge?

Because the knowledge is in God, the Eternal. We achieve knowledge according to His will:

Quran 2:255:

God: there is no deity save Him, the Living, the Eternal One. Neither slumber nor sleep overtakes Him. To Him belong whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is on the earth. Who can intercede with Him except by His permission? He knows all that is before them and all that is behind them. They can grasp only that part of His knowledge which He wills. His throne extends over the heavens and the earth; and their upholding does not weary Him. He is the Sublime, the Almighty One!

And He wills:

Quran 96:1-5

Read: In the Name of your Lord who created. (1) Created man from a clot. (2) Read: And your Lord is the Most Generous. (3) He who taught by the pen. (4) Taught man what he never knew. (5)

Knowledge of menkind is growing through God:

Quran 2:31

And He taught Adam the names - all of them.

Quran 3:48

And He will teach him writing and wisdom and the Torah and the Gospel.

Quran 3:3-4

He sent down to you the Book with the Truth, confirming what came before it; and He sent down the Torah and the Gospel. (3) Aforetime, as guidance for mankind; and He sent down the Criterion.

A growth of knowledge is there. But the main Islamic philosophy (also Christian philosophy) is that past and present and future are present in God.

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