By Peter Heath
Islamic allegory is the manufactured from a cohesive literary culture to which few contributed as considerably as Ibn Sina (Avicenna), the eleventh-century Muslim thinker. Peter Heath right here deals a close exam of Avicenna's contribution, paying precise awareness to Avicenna's psychology and poetics and to the ways that they motivated traces 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 common background of Islamic allegory and explores the interplay between allegory, allegoresis, and philosophy in Avicenna's notion. He then presents a quick advent to Avicenna as an historic determine. From there, he examines the ways that Avicenna's cosmological, mental, and epistemological theories locate parallel, if different, expression within the disparate codecs of philosophical and allegorical narration. integrated during this publication is a demonstration of Avicenna's allegorical perform. This takes the shape of a translation of the Mi'raj Nama (The booklet of the Prophet Muhammad's Ascent to Heaven), a quick treatise in Persian mostly attributed to Avicenna.
The textual content concludes with an research of the literary measurement Avicenna's allegorical thought and perform via analyzing his use of description metaphor. Allegory and Philosophy in Avicenna is an unique and demanding paintings that breaks new flooring by means of using the innovations of contemporary literary feedback to the learn of Medieval Islamic philosophy. it is going to be of curiosity to students and scholars of medieval Islamic and Western literature and philosophy.
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Extra resources for Allegory and Philosophy in Avicenna (Ibn Sina): With a Translation of the Book of the Prophet Muhammad's Ascent to Heaven
Yet any intellectual system that aspires to comprehensiveness does so at certain costs, for it must gloss over structural tensions fundamental to its cohesion as a system. From such tensions arise the criticisms and revisions of later philosophers. But they can also lead to processes of self-revision or recalibration on the part of the system's creator. We shall see that in Avicenna's case one such revision was the creation of allegory. Notes I. For a political survey of this period, see the later chapters of Hugh Kennedy, The Prophet and the Age of the Caliphates: The Islamic Near East from the Sixth to the Eleventh Century (London and New York: Longman, 1986).
Holt, Ann K. S. , The Cambridge 28 Introduction History ofIslam, 2 vols. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1970). Quite useful both for its historical overview and collection of materials is Sa'id Nafisi, Zindagi va-kar va-andishah va-ruzgar-i Pur-i Sina (Tehran: Kitabkhana-yi Danish, 1953-54). 2. Sultan Mahmud (d. 42111030) of Ghazna is an example of a ruler who "collected" scholars and artists less because of any personal interest in their endeavors than because of his desire that they adorn his court.
Brill, 1975), 16 Introduction and Mansour Ajami, The Alchemy of Glory: The Dialectic of Truthfulness and Untruthfulness in Medieval Arabic Literary Criticism (Washington, D. : Three Continents Press, 1988) 53-67. 29. Cf. the historical comments of Ernst Cassirer: But philosophy could never admit such a bifurcation [between myth and logic]. " If myth hides this meaning under all sorts of images and symbols, it became the task of philosophy to unmask it. Since the time of the Stoics philosophy has developed a special, very elaborate technique of allegorical interpretation.