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Radioactive decay causes once-living specimens to lose half of their C14 atoms in about each 5,730-year half-life.

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The final, authoritative written form was completed and fixed under the direction of the third leader, Caliph Uthman, in about AD 650.

The challenge is that it operates under a set of assumptions.

Any scientist with an open mind would tell you that if these assumptions were shifted towards a Biblical view, the carbon dating process would still work, though at a much shorter time scale.

It’s a narrow window of time, to be sure, and at first blush you might think the potential overlap could preserve the story of Islam’s origins. David Thomas of the University of Birmingham explains: According to Muslim tradition, the Prophet Muhammad received the revelations that form the Qur’an, the scripture of Islam, between the years AD 610 and 632, the year of his death…At this time, the divine message was not compiled into the book form in which it appears today.

Instead, the revelations were preserved in ‘the memories of men.’ Parts of it had also been written down on parchment, stone, palm leaves and the shoulder blades of camels…

it could date back to Mohammed’s childhood, or possibly even before his birth. Trouble with a capital “T.” That rhymes with “P” and that stands for, um, pissed Muslims.

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