Abdus Salam often said his science was inspired by the Quran. So what inspired his atheist contemporary, Steven Weinberg?

7 Responses

  1. Maqbool Ahmed

    Excellent Work!

    I can understand that it is not an easy job to discuss this issue from various aspects in a limited time video.
    I was able to see some rare videos which I never saw before and probably those were not public before either.
    I discussed this issue a lot with my friends Dr. Salam and his religious side.
    Let me share my view point on this issue:

    Dr. Salam never said that he derived his theory from his religion.
    If he is motivated by his religion, then good, no problem with it.
    If you look his other sayings/speeches, he clearly mentioned that science and religion are two different things.
    In a Punjabi interview he was asked about God, he said it is part of believe system and not a topic of science.
    So his statements should be viewed collectively.
    When he says he was motivated by his religion, then this is his truthfully statement and not nothing wrong in it.
    His famous saying “scientific thought is the common heritage of mankind”
    This statement includes everyone in it, Athiest or theist of this time or past times.

    So in nut shell:

    Dr. Salam was a believer.
    He mentioned what he felt, like getting motivation to work on a topic.
    He was not trying to prove complete belief of Islamic God by theory of unification but as a person who believed in one force taking care of whole universe, he was astonished to see that science is working on oneness as well and naturally it had to motivate him to work on it.
    He is a great example of a believer scientist, who keeps his science in scientific sphere and religion in its sphere.
    Despite a scientist he is free to give his opinion on different issues and he did that truthfully and did not hide what he believed.
    There are scientist who believe in a particular thing but can not prove it scientifically and they keep it as a belief rather than science.
    Their personal belief/opinion, which could about a scientific topic, remains belief until proven by scientific methods.
    And they don’t present it like a proven scientific theory, but their opinion/belief/strong thoughts.
    Dr. Salam & many scientists must have those kind of gut feelings which they thought are right but could not prove it right scientifically.

    I again appreciate your great effort to conceptualize and present this issue thru this educational video.
    But I think this needs more discussion to clarify above mentioned points.

    Both of these videos target the misconception:

    1. He rejects Einstein or he was greater scientist than Einstein
    2. He took or proved his theory from religion
    &
    We now we can conclude that
    1. He himself accepted Einstein one of the greatest scientists and mentioned that Einstein’s work acted like a foundation for his work.
    2. While he mentions his motivation from religion or getting ideas from religion, it is totally different from working scientifically.
    He was getting ideas like any human being any time from any thing, but he was putting those ideas thru the scientific channels to bring a scientific conclusion.

    He never mentioned that he derived theory of unification from Quran, because concept of unifying the fundamental forces was already there.
    What he mentioned was only motivation, that he liked the idea of oneness of all forces because he as a Muslim was a strong believer of oneness or Wahdat or Tauheed.

    I can be available to talk further on this issue if you want.

  2. Malik Rashid

    Can ‘truths’ contradicting each other be simultaneously true? Thanks Dr. Hoodbhoy.

  3. M. Naeem Amwar

    Partly agree to Mr. Maqbool Ahmad, I also never seen this stuff before, but about one thing I am sure that he (Salam) was a strong believer.

  4. M A Janjua

    Dr. Abdus Salaam said he was inspired by the Qur’an (NOT religion). For all those who have never personally reflected on the Qur’anic message (except through other’s interpretations); the Divine book transforms one’s inner self by shaping his character where religiosity has no place and a total commitment to justice, truth and reason become one’s sole modus operandi.

  5. Atiya nasreen

    My knowledge of science is little but still i have common sense and i think that religion and science are quite opposite of each other. Both cannot prove each other.

    • M. Naeem Anwar

      I totally disagree with this statement. Why we need proof of religion from science? Somehow we can test the scientific statements from source of knowledge of religion (Quran in case of Islam) but no need to prove it. You may think as these two are different chapter of life, therefore one must not be biased while doing science.

  6. This was a real learning experience!Thank you Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy

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