ابن رشد بين التعددية والوحدانية / Ibn Rushd Between Pluralism and Oneness



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الخضيري, زينب محمود; el-Khodeiry, Zeinab Mahmoud

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Research Article

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Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics

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[The author examines the professional accomplishments of Ibn Rushd to uncover how he came to be the philosopher of rationalism in Islam. In contextualizing the intellectual production of Ibn Rushd, the author finds that rationalism was not his ultimate concern, but he arrived at it as a philosophical consequence of his ideological inclinations. The author shows that the early works of Ibn Rushd were typical of any student of philosophy in twelfth-century Andalusia. He summarized the works of outstanding names (al-Ghazālī, Aristotle, Ibn Tūmart). No rationalist pattern can be discerned from the diversity of seminal texts he worked on. His early work is of an eclectic nature. Ibn Rushd's critique of al-Ghazālī and his intellectual front in three works (Faṣl al-maqāl, Manāhij al-adilla and Tahāfut al-tahāfut) took place when he was serving the Caliph of the Muwaḥḥid State. His intention was to displace the commonly known Aristotle of the dialectical theologians (mutakallimin) by an authentic one in order to enlist his philosophy for a unified thought. His attacks on both al-Ghazālī and Ibn Sīnā and even the Greek commentators on Aristotle, as well as the mystics, were a prelude to the intellectual uniformity for which he was paving the way. The author argues that Ibn Rushd sensed that intellectual diversity produces confusion which leads to social and theological deviations. His Aristotelian project shows that-consciously or unconsciously-Ibn Rushd found in Aristotle a solution for diversity. This enabled him to carry over the concept of divine oneness-so dear to the Muwaḥḥidin-from the plane of dogma to the plane of philosophy. Ibn Rushd found in Aristotle a system which can achieve uniformity through the mechanism of separation of fields, leaving one overriding authority in each. This in turn led to mutually exclusive binary oppositions where dialectic is not possible. Ibn Rushd separated philosophy from religion, making the Quran the essence of the first and Aristotle the master of the second. He divided people into two categories, the "public" on one hand and the demonstrative philosophers on the other, while dialecticians were dismissed. Likewise, Ibn Rushd separated Revelation from Dialectical Theology ('ilm al-kalām), considering the first as truth, the second as falsehood. Likewise, the ruler's relation to the ruled as conceived by Ibn Rushd is not reciprocal: a self-sufficient ruler is contrasted to subjects in need of a ruler.]

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