Selamun aleikum,

How do we understand the Quranic description of mountains?

In which way this would be compatible with modern science?

„He created the heavens without pillars that you see and has cast into the earth firmly set mountains, ... „ (Luqman, Verse 10, Saheeh International)

„And the mountains as stakes?“ (An-Naba, Verse 7, Saheeh International)

Allah knows best.

  • What is the tag science for? And what comments have you seen please share a list or something that we could base an answer on!
    – Medi1Saif
    Oct 19, 2020 at 8:15
  • I edited the question. In think your comment on this was as always great: islam.stackexchange.com/questions/25975/…. I wanted to ask a question explicitly only about the mountains and wanted to give a new stage for new findings in science or also other opinions by people or other scholars as well. (Ich hab auch gestern gemerkt, dass du auch Deutsch sprichst. Grüße aus Hessen.)👍
    – user40519
    Oct 19, 2020 at 12:41
  • And what would be your favoring opinion of what you mentioned?
    – user40519
    Oct 19, 2020 at 13:04
  • Honestly speaking one could always say the qur'an mentioned mountains or means mountains and one could also hold a different opinion. In the case described above the view reflected in most tafssirs bi-L-Ma'atur is based on a scientifically wrong description of tectonics or in less respectful words in a narrative that may answer and maybe explain the issue, but with the knowledge we have at hands by now seems totally wrong and misguiding: One could come to the conclusion that here ibn 'Abbas the most reliable source for tafssir erred.
    – Medi1Saif
    Oct 19, 2020 at 14:39

2 Answers 2


I think, it‘s better, if I just refer to this detailed study about this topic and let more knowledgeable people discuss it. https://d1.islamhouse.com/data/en/ih_books/single/en_Geological_Concept_of_Mountains.pdf

  • Surah Naml verse 88 is speaking of the Day of Judgement i.e. the mountains will move like clouds on Qiyamah. Evidence for that is the context. The very next verse: "Whoever comes [at Judgement] with a good deed will have better than it, and they, from the terror of that Day, will be safe." (27:89)
    – The Z
    Oct 20, 2020 at 2:10
  • Verse 27:86 is talking about the earths signs for believing in God in the middle of the context of The Judgement Day. So it would not be out of context, if 27:88 is seen in a similar way, but I don’t know what the scholarly approach is, which I also would favor. But „who perfected all things.“ would maybe be an indication of talking about the perfection about creation like two verses before.
    – user40519
    Oct 20, 2020 at 2:32
  • You're missing that 27:87 ("And [warn of] the Day the Horn will be blown [...]") starts the conversation about Judgement Day. It no longer talks about signs after that. The mountains are mentioned in the context of that, as in: "You see the mountains? They'll blow away like clouds on that day."
    – The Z
    Oct 20, 2020 at 2:48
  • quranx.com/Tafsirs/27.88 Most of what I read here, is your given interpretation. So your comment would be clearly more on the side of truth. I will edit it out.
    – user40519
    Oct 20, 2020 at 2:57

The Qu'ran is not a book on geology, it's a spiritual guide. For example, we have:

Had we sent this Qu'ran down on a mountain you would have surely seen it humbling itself and rent asunder by fear of Allah. These are the parables that we tell the people so that they may perhaps give thought.

This is not about mountains, but about the gravity of the divine reality, that were it to manifest itself in this world would devastate even the mountains - which are a byword for permanence and stability.

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