By Peter Heath
Islamic allegory is the made from a cohesive literary culture to which few contributed as considerably as Ibn Sina (Avicenna), the eleventh-century Muslim thinker. Peter Heath the following bargains an in depth exam of Avicenna's contribution, paying certain awareness to Avicenna's psychology and poetics and to the ways that they inspired lines of theological, mystical, and literary inspiration in next Islamic—and Western—intellectual and non secular history.
Heath starts off through displaying how Avicenna's writings healthy into the context and normal heritage of Islamic allegory and explores the interplay between allegory, allegoresis, and philosophy in Avicenna's idea. He then presents a quick creation to Avicenna as an old determine. From there, he examines the ways that Avicenna's cosmological, mental, and epistemological theories locate parallel, if varied, expression within the disparate codecs of philosophical and allegorical narration. incorporated during this booklet is an indication of Avicenna's allegorical perform. This takes the shape of a translation of the Mi'raj Nama (The ebook of the Prophet Muhammad's Ascent to Heaven), a brief treatise in Persian mostly attributed to Avicenna.
The textual content concludes with an research of the literary size Avicenna's allegorical conception and perform by way of studying his use of description metaphor. Allegory and Philosophy in Avicenna is an unique and critical paintings that breaks new flooring via utilising the concepts of contemporary literary feedback to the examine of Medieval Islamic philosophy. will probably be of curiosity to students and scholars of medieval Islamic and Western literature and philosophy.
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Additional info for Allegory and Philosophy in Avicenna (Ibn Sina): With a Translation of the Book of the Prophet Muhammad's Ascent to Heaven
Avicenna," Encyclopedia Iranica, 3,1: 69-70. Useful chronologies of the dates of Avicenna's major works are in Gohlman, Life, 153-54; Gutas, Avicenna and the Aristotelian Tradition, 145; and Michot, La destinee de Phomme selonAvicenne, 6-7. 8. The following discussion of Avicenna's career is based on his autobiography and Abu 'Ubaid al-Iuzjani's biography; see Gohlman, Life. 9. " The theme recurs throughout the autobiography (17-45). One may venture to guess that Avicenna countenanced the long companionship of al-Juzjani precisely because the latter remained in constant awe of his master.
Humans, in turn, complete this cosmic circle by initiating a process of fulfilling their own teleological potential for perfection. 14 This undertaking has three stages: recognizing one's true purpose in life, learning how to fulfill this purpose, and finally actually fulfilling it. IS The scope of this system is breathtaking, and it is not surprising that Avicenna's attempt to justify it resulted in a plethora of detailed argument and syllogistic demonstration. For our purposes, however, we need only be familiar with its general outlines.
During the last twenty years of his life he crowned his official career by serving as vezier to two rulers, the Buyid prince Shams ad-Daula (d. P This latter was a position of some consequence. " 13 While Avicenna sometimes shirked the dangers of court employment, with its ancillary intrigues (as when he refused the ministry that Shams ad-Daula's son, 'Ali, offered to him), he also took some pride in his accomplishments as a courtier. This is probably one cause for his irritation when a philologist in Isfahan called into question his mastery of literary Arabic.
Allegory and Philosophy in Avicenna (Ibn Sina): With a Translation of the Book of the Prophet Muhammad's Ascent to Heaven by Peter Heath