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Did Prophet Muhammad say that the human body is made up of 360 joints?
The sections of this article are:
1- Prophet Muhammad's Saying (Hadith).
(a)- Only a handful of joints are noticeable in the body.
Medical evidence about the 360 joints.
3- The Glorious Quran confirms that the 360 number may not be literal.
1- Prophet Muhammad's Saying (Hadith):
The following is the Hadith in Arabic and my English translation to it:
حسن بن علي الحلواني حدثنا أبو توبة الربيع بن نافع حدثنا معاوية
يعني ابن سلام عن زيد أنه سمع أبا سلام يقول حدثني عبد
الله بن فروخ أنه سمع عائشة تقول
Hasan bin Al-Hilwani narrated to us that Abu Tawbah Al-Rabie bin Nafi'a narrated that Muaawiyah Yaani ibn Salam narrated that Zaid narrated that he heard Abu Salam said that Abdallah bin Farookh narrated that he heard Aisha (the wife of the Prophet) say that the Prophet, peace be upon him, said that every man from the people of Adam (i.e., mankind) was created UNTO/UPON/ON 60 and 300 MIFSAL. So whoever glorifies Allah, praises Allah, calls people to Allah, makes supplications to Allah, seeks forgiveness from Allah, removes a stone, needle or bone from the people's path (i.e., removes obstacles from people's paths), and enjoins what is just and forbid what is wrong in the number of those 60 and 300 ALSALAMA, he will then on that day remove himself from Hell Fire.
This Hadith (Saying of Prophet Muhammad) is a Mutawatir (genuine....among the very well known ones) one. This can be verified in this link (see Hadith #395 on the list). Now reading the Arabic and English texts above, we clearly see the key words UNTO, UPON or ON for the Arabic word "ala" (على).
(a)- Only a handful of joints are noticeable in the body:
The Prophet of Islam, peace be upon him, might have:
2- Made a metaphoric claim, since the joints that are visible to us are only a handful (knees, elbows, knuckles, etc...), and medical technology back then did not exist.
In either case, we will clearly see that the Prophet's claims are in harmony with Science.
2- Medical evidence about the 360 joints:
The following medical websites confirm that the human body does have 360 joints in it:
Dr. Douglas A. Becker of Minneapolis Orthopaedics claims that the human body has 360 joints:
Raymond D. Mutter, M.D., who is a specialist in internal medicine, also claims that the human body has 360 joints:
Indigenous Health Measurement Group meeting in Vancouver, Canada - a PDF file: www.answering-christianity.com/human_body_has_360_joints.pdf:
"Technically, arthritis is inflammation of a joint. However, the term is used much more generally to describe any pain producing damage to the joint. Given the large number of joints in the human body (213 bones with about 360 joints), the number of arthritic problems encountered is large. More than 150 forms of arthritis are already recognised in the literature. The term ‘musculoskeletal conditions’ includes all disorders associated with bones, muscles and connective tissues of the body, including arthritis. Monitoring this vast array of conditions is a formidable task."
Some Scientists today, Muslims and Westerners, were able to demonstrate and prove that the human body does have 360 joints in it:
More Doctors claiming that humans have 360 joints:
3- The Glorious Quran confirms that the 360 number may not be literal:
Allah Almighty in the Glorious Quran made some numerical references that He, the Almighty, clearly stated that they were not literal:
1- The Lunar Calendar is the most accurate calendar - mentioned in the Noble Quran and confirmed by Science. Also the precise calculation of difference between the Gregorian and Lunar calendars is demonstrated in the Noble Quran.
So with these examples from the Glorious Quran, we can now all agree that Prophet Muhammad's statement about the 360 joints in the human body, if it was intended to be literally about actual joints, was an estimation and not necessarily an actual and exact calculated figure. In other words, the statement could also mean that man roughly has around 360 joints (give or take some).
Whether the Prophet, peace be upon him, meant to make an actual Scientific claim or not, we clearly don't have any problem in either way. If the Prophet claimed that mankind has around 360 joints, then this is in harmony with Science today. And if the Prophet spoke in symbolic terms and that mankind is so complex, that he was perhaps Designed by Allah Almighty in 360 stages, then we also wouldn't have a problem with Science.
The Overwhelming Scientific Miracles in the Glorious Quran.
The Noble Quran and Islam - Questions and Answers.
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