In the name of Allah

Ma‘rifat-i Falsafi Vol.6, No.1

A Quarterly Journal of Philosophical Inquiry Fall 2008

A publication by Imām Khomeini Institute for Education and Research

Editor in Chief: Ali Mesbah

Editor: Ri„ā Akbariān

Coordinator: Muˆammad Fūlādi

Editorial Board:

Dr. Aˆmad Aˆmadi: Professor, Tehran University

Dr. Riḍā Akbarīyān: Associate professor, Tarbīyat Mudarris University

Dr. Ghulām-Ri„ā A‘wāni: Professor, Shahid Beheshti University

Dr. Muˆammad Fanā'i: Associate Professor, Imām Khomeini Inst. for Education and Research

Hoj. Ghulām-Ri„ā Fayyā„i: Professor, Imām Khomeini Inst. for Education and Research

Dr. Hussain Ghaffāri: Associate Professor, Tehran University

Hoj. Muḥammad Ḥusainzādeh: Associate Prof., Imām Khomeini Inst. for Education and Research

Dr. Muḥsin Javādi: Associate Professor, Qum University

Dr. Muˆammad Legenhausen: Associate Professor, Imām Khomeini Inst. for Education and Research

Dr. Muˆammad Sa‘īdi Mehr: Assistant Professor, Tarbīyat Mudarres University


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Ma‘rifat-i Falsafi is a quarterly journal of philosophical inquiry, dedicated to research in comparative philosophy. This journal covers issues concerning the comparison, critique, and analysis of the foundations and ideas of Muslim philosophers, as well as the juxtaposition, scrutiny, and evaluation of theories articulated by Muslim and non-Muslim philosophers. Academically exploring novel and unprecedented issues in comparative philosophy is among the aims of this journal.

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Table of Contents

Editor’s Foreword

Gradation (Tashkīk) in Three Schools of Islamic Philosophy

Muḥamad Sarbakhshi

Bodily Resurrection according to Theist Philosophers

Ja‘far Anvāri

Metempsychosis from Shaykh Ishrāq’s Viewpoint

Muḥammad Taqi Yūsufi .

An Inquiry into the Varieties of Right

Sayed Maḥmūd Nabaviān

Value and Value-Statements in Muḥaqiq Khurāsāni

Mahdi Karimi

Theory of Human Nature (Fiṭrat): a Historical Review in the West: from Antiquity till Today

Mas’ūd Omid

The Origins of Analytic Philosophy according to Michael Dummett

Ḥussain Kalbāsi and Abdullāh Nīksīrat

Alphabetical Indices of Articles and Authors (Vol. 5, No. 1-4)


Gradation (Tashkīk)

in Three Schools of Islamic Philosophy

Muḥamad Sarbakhshi 1

The literal meaning of “gradation”, the reason for its denomination, and its technical meaning in logic and philosophy are the requirements for a discussion on this concept. This article deals, in its first part, with the issue of the beginning of such an idea in philosophy, and its relation to the field of logic. Since each one of the three major schools of Islamic philosophy had their share in the development and evolution of this term, the author then turns to a discussion of their unique impact on the progress and the maturity of this subject. Critically analyzing each theory, the author tries to come up with an acceptable idea, and brings forward his reasons to support his choice.

Keywords: Gradation, Plurality, What Causes the Difference, What is Shared in Common, Accidental, Essential, Quiddity, Existence.

Bodily Resurrection according to Theist Philosophers

Ja‘far Anvāri 2

All theist philosophers and theologians believe in resurrection; however, they engage in debates over its nature and quality. According to Mullā Ṣadrā, those who think that it is impossible for human body to resurrect after it is perished, and only soul will be present in the hereafter, they are ignorant of the nature of the next world, and such an idea requires an esoteric interpretation of those verses in the Qur’an which explicitly indicate the physicality of resurrection.

Ṣadr al-Muta’alihīn argues that every person, who enjoys a sound and healthy psych, and looks into the premises of bodily resurrection, would certainly come to the conclusion that the same human body will revive in the hereafter. Shaykh Ishrāq emphasizes the idea of bodily resurrection with an imaginal form. Still other philosophers such as Ibn Sīnā establish bodily resurrection through narrations from the Noble Prophet (peace be upon him and his progeny), and Muḥaqiq Ṭūsi considers it as an essential part of Islam.

Keywords: Resurrection, Spiritual Resurrection, Bodily Resurrection, The Nature of Bodily Resurrection, Imaginal Form, Physical Body, Other-worldly Body.

Metempsychosis from Shaykh Ishrāq’s Viewpoint

Muḥammad Taqi Yūsufi 3

“Metempsychosis” has been a preoccupation for those who have worked in the area of philosophical psychology since a long time. It has resonance in other philosophical investigations, as well as in theological discussions. Muslim philosophers have dealt with this issue from different perspectives, and most often have come to the conclusion that it is philosophically impossible. Shaykh Ishrāq, however, says something different in this regard.

This article is an attempt at explaining Shaykh Ishrāq’s idea with reference to his original works. At the outset, the author presents a history of the idea of metempsychosis, different approaches to this theory, its various terminologies, its foundations, and the reasons behind its rejection by some scholars. At the end, he tries to elaborate on Shaykh Ishrāq’s viewpoint on the issue, as well as his evaluation of the philosophical and narrative arguments regarding the question of metempsychosis.

Keywords: Metempsychosis, Worldly Metempsychosis, Celestial Metempsychosis, Ascending Metempsychosis, Descending Metempsychosis, Equal Metempsychosis, Metamorphosis, Abrogation, Raskh.

An Inquiry into the Varieties of Right

Sayed Maḥmūd Nabaviān 4

The study of the varieties of right is an important issue in understanding “rights”. Questions that arise in this regard include: is there only one type of right or has it various forms? If there is more than one type of forms, what are the criteria for differentiating among them?

According to the author, from a general perspective, one can distinguish eleven classifications for “right”, each of which brings with it a set of subdivisions. In this article, however, some of these classifications and their divisions are discussed.

Keywords: Right, Privilege, Moral Right, Legal Right, Divine Right.

Value and Value Statements

In Muḥaqiq Khurāsāni

Mahdi Karimi 5

An analysis of “good and bad” and “value statements” is an important issue in analytic ethics (meta-ethics) as one of the most disputed branches of philosophy of ethics. Although such issues in their current form are new to the field, their roots can be found in the history of ideas in different disciplines. In the history of Islamic thought, one can trace such issues in a variety of disciplines such as ethics, principles of jurisprudence (uṣūl al-fiqh), philosophy, and theology.

Muḥaqiq Khurāsāni (Ākhūnd), a prominent figure in uṣūl, has analyzed this issue and came up with a theory that is regarded by many as an innovation without any precedent. According to him, “good” and “bad” means “sympathy and antipathy to the faculty of reasoning”. This article is an attempt to present, analyze, and evaluate this theory, while differentiating three domains of semantics, ontology, and epistemology.

Keywords: Value, Value Statements, Good and Bad, Analytic Ethics, Ākhūnd Khurāsāni.

Theory of Human Nature (Fiṭrat): a Historical Review in the West: from Antiquity till Today

Mas’ūd Omid 6

The theory of human nature (fiṭrat) occupied the central stage in the philosophical investigations of many 17th-century Western philosophers. It appeared as a philosophical, psychological, and epistemological theory that included a variety of elements and ideas. This theory is also considered as one of the challenging points of contact and philosophical criticism between Islamic and Western philosophies.

This theory, on the one hand, had a historical background, and on the other, manifested itself differently in the viewpoints of the next philosophers and thinkers. This article is an attempt to shed light on the historical background of the theory before 17th century Europe, and to follow its course of development in the next period (without engaging in a discussion on the Cartesian and Kantian philosophers). Such an historical review is meant to achieve two goals: first, it can show the width of such a theory in the mind of different philosophers, and second, it may help better understand the challenge, between Muslim and some Western philosophers, revolving around the issue of Fiṭrat.

Keywords: Fiṭrat, Human Nature, Cognitive System.

The Origins of Analytic Philosophy

According to Michael Dummett

Ḥussain Kalbāsi 7

Abdullāh Nīksīrat8

The normal idea about analytic philosophy is that it is of an English-American origin, and its founders are Russell and Moore. Michael Dummett considers Germany to be the real origin of analytic philosophy, and Frege to be its founder. That is because philosophical analysis is nothing more than an analysis of thought through language, and this is exactly what Frege suggested for the first time.

Dummett believes that by proposing the theory of “linguistic turn” in his works such as The Foundation of Arithmetic and Begriffsschrift, Frege prompted a change of epistemic question from thought-things relation to that of language-meaning. The Basis of this theory is the “context principle”, in which a word is meaningful only in the context of a sentence; which in turn, means that thoughts are transformed in sentences, and speaking of the structure of thought is to speak of the semantic relation betwen the components of a sentence. Such an approach by Frege triggered the appearance of analytic philosophy; although other German-speaking thinkers such as Bolzano, Meinong, and especially Husserl (with his theory of “intentionality”) had their share too.

Keywords: Meaning, Case, Truth, Thought, Linguistic Turn, Principality.

1 Ph.D. Student of Philosophy, Imam Khomeini I. E. R.; Received: 2008.8.31; Accepted: 2008.11.20

2 Assistant Professor, Imam Khomeini I. E. R.; Received: 2008.8.9 Accepted: 2008.12.1

3 Ph.D. Student of Philosophy, Imam Khomeini I. E. R.; Received: 2008.8.15; Accepted: 2008.11.15

4 Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Imam Khomeini I. E. R.; Received: 2008.8.10; Accepted: 2008.9.15

5 Ph.D. Student of Islamic Theology, Jāme’at al-Muṣtafā al-Ālamīyah; Received:2008.9.10 Accepted: 2008.11.25

6 Assistant Professor, Tabrīz University;Received:2008.8.14 Accepted: 2008.11.20

7 Associate Professor, Allameh Tabataba’i University; Received: 2008.8.31 Accepted: 2008.11.30

8 Ph.D. Student of Philosophy and Fellow, Shahid Chamrān University in Ahvaz.