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The Multiverse and Variations of Islam

The concept of the multiverse is a fascinating frontier in modern cosmology that suggests the existence of multiple, perhaps even infinite, universes beyond our own observable universe. This idea, once the realm of science fiction, has gained traction among physicists and cosmologists as a plausible theory that could explain some of the mysteries of the cosmos. For Muslims, the notion of a multiverse is not merely a scientific curiosity but also a topic that intersects with theological and philosophical questions about creation, divine power, and the nature of reality.

In Islam, the belief in the unseen (al-ghayb) is a fundamental aspect of faith. The Quran frequently mentions the vastness and complexity of creation, urging believers to reflect on the signs of God in the universe. The possibility of a multiverse expands this reflection, inviting Muslims to contemplate the limitless creativity and majesty of the Creator. It challenges believers to consider their place in a potentially infinite cosmic tapestry woven by the divine will.

This article aims to explore the intersection of the multiverse concept with Islamic thought. It seeks to understand how the idea of multiple universes aligns with or challenges traditional Islamic teachings and how Muslims might navigate the theological and philosophical implications of this modern scientific theory. By delving into this topic, we can appreciate the dynamic interplay between faith and reason in Islam and the religion’s openness to new horizons of knowledge.

Cosmic Possibilities:
Understanding the Multiverse in Science

The multiverse theory is a bold and intriguing proposition in the realm of physics that suggests our universe is just one of many—potentially an infinite number—of universes that exist parallel to or even beyond our own. This concept has emerged from various interpretations of quantum mechanics and cosmological models, such as the inflationary theory, which posits that our universe is just one bubble in a vast cosmic foam. Each “bubble” or universe in this foam can have its own physical laws, constants, and even potentially different dimensions.

While the multiverse remains a speculative theory, it has gained attention for its potential to resolve some of the mysteries of our universe, such as the fine-tuning problem, which questions why the physical constants of our universe are so precisely calibrated to allow for the existence of life. The multiverse theory suggests that in an ensemble of universes, each with different physical constants, it’s not surprising that at least one—ours—would have the right conditions for life.

For scientists and philosophers, the multiverse opens up a plethora of questions about the nature of reality, causality, and the limits of scientific inquiry. It challenges our understanding of the cosmos and forces us to reconsider what we know about the universe’s origin, structure, and ultimate fate. As we delve deeper into the mysteries of the cosmos, the multiverse theory stands as a testament to the human spirit’s quest for knowledge and the endless possibilities that lie beyond the boundaries of our observable universe.

Theological Horizons: Islam’s View on Infinite Realms

In Islamic theology, the belief in the unseen (al-ghayb) is a cornerstone of faith. The Quran speaks of a reality that extends beyond human perception, encompassing angels, jinn, and other dimensions of existence. The concept of a multiverse, with its suggestion of multiple, possibly infinite universes, resonates with this Islamic notion of a vast and complex creation that transcends human understanding.

The Quranic verses that describe God’s power and knowledge as encompassing all things in the heavens and the earth can be seen as aligning with the idea of a multiverse. For instance, the verse “He is with you wherever you are. And God, of what you do, is Seeing.” (Quran 57:4) can be interpreted to suggest God’s omnipresence and omniscience across all realms of existence, not limited to our observable universe.

Islamic scholars have long engaged in intellectual explorations of the nature of the universe and the limits of human knowledge. The concept of a multiverse invites Muslims to reflect on the infinite wisdom and creativity of God, who has the power to create not just one, but countless universes, each with its own laws and wonders. It challenges believers to expand their understanding of God’s majesty and to remain humble in the face of the vast unknowns of creation.

Destiny and Free Will
Navigating Choices Across Worlds

One of the most intriguing theological implications of the multiverse theory is its potential impact on Islamic concepts of destiny (qadar) and free will. In a multiverse with infinite possibilities, how do divine predestination and human agency interact across different universes? This question invites a deep exploration of the relationship between God’s omniscience and human choice in Islamic thought.

The Quran teaches that God has knowledge of all things, including the destiny of every creature, as stated in the verse “Indeed, all things We created with predestination.” (Quran 54:49). This divine knowledge encompasses all possible outcomes in the tapestry of creation. In the context of a multiverse, this could imply that God’s omniscience extends across all universes, each with its own set of possibilities and destinies.

However, Islam also upholds the principle of human free will, asserting that individuals have the ability to make choices and are responsible for their actions. The Quran states, “And say, ‘The truth is from your Lord, so whoever wills – let him believe; and whoever wills – let him disbelieve.’” (Quran 18:29), highlighting the role of human volition in matters of faith and conduct.

Reconciling divine predestination with free will is a complex theological issue that has been debated by Muslim scholars for centuries. In a multiverse framework, this debate takes on new dimensions. Each universe could represent a different set of circumstances and choices, with individuals exercising their free will within the parameters set by God’s overarching knowledge and will.

The concept of a multiverse invites Muslims to contemplate the infinite wisdom of God, who has created a reality far beyond human comprehension. It encourages believers to trust in God’s plan while actively engaging in making moral and righteous choices in their lives. As Muslims navigate the complexities of destiny and free will, the idea of a multiverse serves as a reminder of the vastness of God’s creation and the importance of humility in the pursuit of knowledge and understanding.

Variations of Islam in the Multiverse

The concept of a multiverse suggests the possibility of countless universes, each with its own unique set of circumstances and histories. Within this framework, it is conceivable that variations of Islam could exist across different universes, each adapting to the specific conditions and challenges of its world. This idea challenges the notion of a singular, unchanging expression of Islam, instead presenting a dynamic and multifaceted understanding of the faith.

In one universe, Islam might have developed in a context where certain historical events unfolded differently, leading to distinct interpretations of Islamic principles and practices. In another, technological advancements or environmental factors could have shaped the way Muslims understand and live their faith. These variations, however, would all be rooted in the core tenets of Islam, such as belief in one God, the prophethood of Muhammad, and the importance of prayer, charity, fasting, and pilgrimage.

The existence of multiple versions of Islam in a multiverse does not diminish the universality of the Islamic message. Instead, it highlights the adaptability and relevance of Islam across diverse contexts and realities. It serves as a reminder that the essence of Islam is its ability to guide and inspire individuals and communities, regardless of the specific circumstances of their existence.

The Limits of Human Knowledge

The idea of a multiverse pushes the boundaries of human understanding and challenges our perceptions of reality. It serves as a humbling reminder of the limits of human knowledge and the vastness of the unknown. In Islam, the pursuit of knowledge is highly encouraged, but it is also acknowledged that there are realms of existence and aspects of creation that are beyond human comprehension.

The Quran states, “And of knowledge, you (mankind) have been given only a little.” (Quran 17:85). This verse emphasizes the idea that, despite our advancements in science and technology, there are still mysteries of the universe that remain beyond our grasp. The concept of a multiverse, with its infinite possibilities and complexities, is a prime example of such a mystery.

Believers are encouraged to explore and learn about the world around them, but also to recognize and accept the limitations of their understanding. This humility in the face of the unknown is a key aspect of Islamic faith, fostering a sense of awe and reverence for the Creator, who is the source of all knowledge and wisdom.


The exploration of concepts such as the multiverse and variations of Islam challenges us to think deeply about the nature of reality and the flexibility of religious interpretation. It encourages Muslims to engage with modern scientific theories while remaining anchored in the foundational beliefs of their faith. The idea of a multiverse invites believers to contemplate the infinite creativity and power of Allah, who has created a universe—or perhaps multiple universes—filled with wonder and complexity.

As we continue to advance in our understanding of the cosmos, it is important for Muslims to approach new discoveries with an open mind, a sense of curiosity, and a firm grounding in Islamic principles. By doing so, they can navigate the evolving landscape of science and religion with grace and wisdom, finding harmony between their beliefs and the expanding frontiers of human knowledge.