THE FORMATION OF RAIN
How rain was formed remained a great mystery for quite some time.
Only after the weather radar was invented was it possible to discover
the stages by which rain is formed.
According to this discovery, the formation of rain takes place
in three stages. First, the "raw material" of rain rises up into
the air with the wind. Later, clouds are formed, and finally raindrops
The Qur'an's account of the formation of rain refers exactly to
this process. In one verse, this formation is described in this
It is Allah Who sends the winds which stir up
clouds which He spreads about the sky however He wills. He forms
them into dark clumps and you see the rain come pouring out from
the middle of them. When He makes it fall on those of His servants
He wills, they rejoice. (Qur'an, 30:48)
Now, let us examine these three stages outlined in the verse in
FIRST STAGE: "It is Allah Who sends the winds..."
Countless air bubbles formed by the foaming of the oceans continuously
burst and cause water particles to be ejected towards the sky. These
particles, which are rich in salt, are then carried away by winds
and rise upward in the atmosphere. These particles, which are called
aerosols, function as water traps, and form cloud drops by collecting
around the water vapour themselves, which rises from the seas as
SECOND STAGE: ".... which stir up clouds
which He spreads about the sky however He wills. He forms them into
The clouds are formed from water vapour that condenses around the
salt crystals or dust particles in the air. Because the water droplets
in these clouds are very small (with a diameter between 0.01 and
0.02 mm), the clouds are suspended in the air, and spread across
the sky. Thus, the sky is covered in clouds.
The above illustration shows the water droplets being released
into the air. This is the first stage in the formation of
rain. After that, the water droplets in the newly formed clouds
will be suspended in the air and then condense to form rain.
All of these stages are related in the Qur'an.
THIRD STAGE: "�and you see the rain come
pouring out from the middle of them"
The water particles that surround salt crystals and dust particles
thicken and form raindrops, so, drops that become heavier than the
air leave the clouds and start to fall to the ground as rain.
As already discussed, every stage in the formation of rain is related
in the verses of the Qur'an. Furthermore, these stages are explained
in exactly the right sequence. Just as with many other natural phenomena
on the Earth, Allah gave the most correct explanation of this phenomenon,
and made it known in the Qur'an centuries before it was discovered.
In another verse, the following information is given about the
formation of rain:
Have you not seen how Allah drives along the
clouds, then joins them together, then makes them into a stack,
and then you see the rain come out of it? And He sends down from
the sky mountain masses [of clouds] with cold hail in them, striking
with it anyone He wills and averting it from anyone He wills.
The brightness of His lightning almost blinds the sight. (Qur'an,
Scientists studying cloud types came across surprising results
with regards to the formation of rain clouds. Rain clouds are formed
and shaped according to definite systems and stages. The stages
of formation of one kind of rain cloud, cumulonimbus, are these:
1. STAGE, Being driven along: Clouds are carried along, that is,
they are driven along, by the wind.
(A) Isolated small pieces of clouds (cumulonimbus clouds)
(B) When the small clouds join together, updrafts within
the larger cloud increase. As a result, the cloud is stacked
2. STAGE, Joining: Then, small clouds (cumulonimbus
clouds) driven along by the wind join together, forming a larger
3. STAGE, Stacking: When the small clouds join
together, updrafts within the larger cloud increase. The updrafts
near the centre of the cloud are stronger than those near the edges.
These updrafts cause the cloud body to grow vertically, so the cloud
is stacked up. This vertical growth causes the cloud body to stretch
into cooler regions of the atmosphere, where drops of water and
hail formulate and begin to grow larger and larger. When these drops
of water and hail become too heavy for the updrafts to support them,
they begin to fall from the cloud as rain, hail, etc.56
We must remember that meteorologists have only recently come to
know these details about cloud formation, structure and function,
by using advanced equipment like planes, satellites, computers etc.
It is evident that Allah has provided us information that could
not have been known 1,400 years ago.
These updrafts cause the cloud body to grow vertically
and the cloud is stacked up. This vertical growth causes
the cloud body to stretch into cooler regions of the atmosphere,
where drops of water and hail formulate and begin to grow
larger and larger. When these drops of water and hail become
too heavy for the updrafts to support them, they begin to
fall from the cloud as rain, hail, etc. This scientific
fact was announced in Sura Nur 43 fourteen centuries ago
by Allah in this way: "... then [He] makes
them into a stack, and then you see the rain come out of
55. Richard A. Anthes,
et al., The Atmosphere, 3rd ed. (Columbus: Charles E. Merrill Publishing
Company: 1981), 268-269; Albert Millers, Jack C. Thompson, Elements
of Meteorology, 2nd ed. (Columbus: Charles E. Merrill Publishing
Company: 1975), 141.
56. Anthes, et al., The Atmosphere, 269; Millers, and Thompson,
Elements of Meteorology, 141-142.