Scientific Explanation of Hail Based on the Verse 43 of Surah al-Nūr from the Noble Qurʼan

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Associate Professor, Faculty of Earth Sciences, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran

2 MS in Geology, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran



Hail is an atmospheric rainfall with a complex mechanism. The Greeks were among the pioneers of knowledge in ancient times and they termed “hail” as “frozen rain” (Anaximander) and “instant freezing of water and moisture” (Aristotle, n.d.). These two meanings are inconsistent with current scientific facts. The Noble Qurʼan is the most authentic text to encourage Muslim believers to think about creation and strengthen their faith in the eternal power of the Creator. For instance, the mechanism of hail falling has been expressed in the verse (Q.24:43) with specific and gradual indications.
In this research, first, by library method, different explanations of this verse were obtained from valid interpretive sources and then, the scientific findings of meteorologists and climatologists on hail were extracted from reference scientific texts on atmospheric sciences. In the third stage and based on comparative method, the scientific rules were placed next to interpretations to test the novelty and degree of the allusions of this verse. We found that the stages of hail falling included:“invisible water vapor rises from the sea,” “water vapor ascends into the atmosphere,” “reaching the condensation stage,” “cloud formation,” “convergence of ascending currents,” “formation of cumulonimbus cloud,” “growth of hailstones during successive ascents and descents by adsorption and freezing of ice needles,” and finally “their fall down over ground” respectively. Meanwhile, the steps in the Noble Qurʼan are mentioned in verse (Q.24:43) in the following order:“clouds movement slowly,” “clouds convergence,” “clouds accumulation,” “the formation of mountain-like clouds,” and “hail falling from the clouds.” The results also showed that likening cumulonimbus cloud in the verse (Q.24:43) to “mountain” have four respects that were beyond the comprehension of the people at the time of the revelation of the Qurʼan. Nowadays, these features are known to stationary and satellite meteorological instruments. These four characteristics are “cloud layer temperature,” “their constituent phase,” “troughs and ridges inside the cloud” and “cloud height up to the tropopause.” Based on these four characteristics, the Noble Qurʼan considered the cloud of cumulonimbus as similar as “mountains.” Meteorologists divide any cumulonimbus cloud into three floors, including cold at the bottom, super-cold at the top and intermediate in the middle. We find these three floors in the same way in the high mountains. These floors are the current rivers (liquid phase), snow and ice reserves (solid phase) and in the middle region a combination of two liquid and solid phases, namely water and ice. Images from the cumulonimbus from above the atmosphere show dark and deep valleys and light and raised ridges. The fourth feature is to be said, none of the surface phenomena are as high as the mountains. Finally, meteorological findings show that it is the only cumulonimbus that rises from the ground to a height of 12,000 meters and more. 


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