THE EXPLORATION OF SPACE

Humanity's exploration of space was accelerated with the Soviet satellite Sputnik on 4 October 1957, which carried aloft the first man to ever leave Earth's atmosphere: Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. On 20 July 1969, the American astronaut Neil Armstrong became the first human being ever to set foot on the Moon.

In fact, the Qur'an revealed that such developments and achievements would one day be realised. For instance, Allah draws our attention to this in the following verse:

O company of jinn and human beings. If you are able to pierce through the confines of the heavens and Earth, pierce through them. You will not pierce through, except with a clear authority. (Qur'an, 55:33)

The Arabic word sultan, translated here as "a clear authority," has other meanings as well: force, power, sovereignty, dominion, law, path, permission, give leave, justify, and proof.

Careful examination reveals that the above verse emphasizes that humanity will be able to move into the depths of Earth and sky, but only with a superior power. In all likelihood, this superior power is the superior technology employed in the twentieth century, for it enabled scientists to achieve this great feat.