By Seyyed Hossein Nasr

ISBN-10: 0500272166

ISBN-13: 9780500272169

This is often the one ebook to accommodate classical Islamic cosmology because it used to be formulated via the Ikhwan al-S'afa al Biruni and Ibn Sina throughout the 10th and 11th centuries. those figures inspired the entire later centuries of Islamic heritage and actually created the cosmological framework in which all later medical task within the Islamic international used to be carried out--the enduring picture of the cosmos in which Muslims have lived in the past millennium.

Nasr writes from in the Islamic culture and demonstrates how, in accordance with the lessons of the Quran and the Prophet, the figures taken care of during this paintings built-in components drawn from quite a few historic colleges of philosophy and the sciences. This publication is exclusive in its therapy of classical Islamic cosmology as noticeable from in the Islamic world-view and offers a key for knowing of conventional Islamic thought.

“…the volume of educational literature dedicated to the way in which in which Muslims in classical and medieval Islam expected the cosmos is negligible. There are, even if, a few noteworthy exceptions. An creation to Islamic Cosmological Doctrines is one in every of them.” — Parabola

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16 PROLOGUE The opposition of the Sunni doctors of the law to philosophy and most of the pre-Islamic (awii'il) sciences became more intense after the destruction of the Mu'tazilites and the triumph of Ash'arite theology during the 4th/10th and 5th/11th centuries. Likewise, the Sunni caliphate usually was more favorable to the purely religious disciplines such as the science of commentary, badith, and jurisprudence, and supported the other sciences like medicine and astronomy only to the extent that they corresponded to the needs of the communityY When we take into account this difference in attitude of the Sunni and the Shi'ah toward the arts and sciences, it becomes somewhat easier to discover the causes underlying the great activity in the various sciences during the 4th/10th and 5th/11th centuries, the period which we have chosen to study in this book.

L. Tibawi, "Ikhwan a~-~afa and their Rasa'il," Islamic Quarterly, 2:28-46 (1955). " A. Tamir, La Realite des lbwan a$-Sa/ii' wa f;lulliin al-Wafii' (Beirut, 1957), p. 17. 27 THE RASA'IL OF THE IKHWAN AL-~AFA' ''the work is accepted by the Isma'ilis as belonging to their religion, and is still regarded as esoteric ... ," 10 it is not surprising to find most modern scholars, Muslims and non-Muslims alike, claiming Isma'ili authorship for the work. A.

This flexibility made it easy for the early translators to translate Greek, Syriac, Sanskrit, and Pahlavi texts into Arabic, to coin new words with relative ease, and expand the meaning of already existing terms to include new concepts. The character of the Arabic language itself therefore was influential in the study of all the sciences in the Islamic world, including those concerning Nature. In the sciences of Nature, the Muslims had a rich vocabulary of Arabic words to express all the diverse concepts and ideas connected with the cosmological sciences.

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An Introduction to Islamic Cosmological Doctrines by Seyyed Hossein Nasr


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