On the Principle of non-Contradiction

Translated by: Abdur Rauf Afzali

Reza Sadiqi

Since the principle of non-contradiction is highly important, it can be assessed from different perspectives ranging particularly from epistemology to philosophy and logic. Considering that the epistemological, philosophical and logical aspects of this principle are very closely interrelated one cannot draw a definite line of difference between them. However assuming that some of the discussions concerning the principle of non-contradiction are simply related to some of its aspects mentioned above, paying attention to the difference they have from each other, will be a key to understanding its implications. Taking into account its epistemological, philosophical and logical aspects, the paper tries to review the elaborations made on this principle and its implications.

Keywords: principle of non-contradiction, self-evident propositions, foundationalism, argument against infinite regress, opposition.

The Criterion for the Truth of Religious Statements

Muhammad Huseinzada

To find a criterion to show the truth of certain (jazmi) and uncertain (danni) religious statements is one of the most basic and also one of the most difficult problems of epistemology. According to the paper, certainty (jazm) or normal knowledge is sufficient for knowing a religion. Based on this approach (namely sufficiency of certainty or normal knowledge) what is the criterion for the truth of such knowledge? To answer this question, one can enumerate many criteria for evaluating certain and uncertain knowledge. The paper studies these criteria of which the most important are the doctrine of authority in religious epistemology and Shaheed Sadr’s strategy in solving the problem of induction.

These criteria can be used only at times when one cannot base the certain, uncertain and sure (yaqini) (in its general sense) religious statements on sure (in its special sense) statements. Otherwise there is no need for such criteria. According to the paper, basing the former on the later is possible.

Keywords: intrinsic value of certainty, blindly followed statements rationally followed statements, intrinsic and thematic certainty, doctrine of authority, probability, challenge.

The non-principiality (itibariyat) of essence; why and how?

Abbas Nikzad

Since the main point of this paper is to reject the non-principiality of essence it studies the arguments for the non-principiality of essence showing that none of them can, due to their defects and flaws, prove what is claimed. The main point emphasized over in this paper, is that most of the arguments presented here, are related to proving the principiality (asalat) of existence not the non-principiality of essence, while there is no necessary link between the two. Since there is no necessary link between accepting the principiality of existence and surrendering to the non-principiality of essence the single-choice approach (either principiality of existence or principiality of essence) adopted by some great thinkers, is not logically justified.

Keywords: existence, essence, principality, non-principiality.

Mystical irrationalism?!

Sayyed Yadullah Yazdanpanah

On account of the depth and complexity of its intuitions, mystical experience raises some questions for philosophers entering the province of philosophy of mysticism. One of such questions is that mystical doctrines such as particular unity are paradoxical. According to mystics, things are both the reality of existence and the non-reality of it and their intuitions (e.g. the idea of God) are both one and many, determined and undetermined, manifest while hidden and hidden while manifest.

Are these statements that originate from mystical intuitions, really or apparently paradoxical? Based on identity and the law of non-contradiction reason will not be compatible with the above statements (if they are really paradoxical) and as a result reason will not be able to penetrate mysticism understanding its objective realities and arguing for them. Thus the question is whether or not mysticism is compatible with reason and philosophy. In general, is mysticism rational or irrational?

W.T. Stace has treated of this problem in chapter 5th of his book, mysticism and philosophy. This paper tries to mention and study Stace’s points of views.

Keywords: mystical experience, personal unity of being, reality of existence, identity, law of non-contradiction, domain of infinity, absolute circumstances.

A panel discussion on the relations between philosophy and mysticism

Attended by Dr. Yahya Ythribi, Dr. Fanaye Ashkavari and Hujjatul Islam Husain Ushshaqi

The tendency towards mysticism and spirituality has, at one time, as mystical tradition and at another, as individual tendency, been common among different nations from time immemorial. As an example one can mention ancient eastern traditions including Hinduism, Buddhism, Christian and Muslim mystical traditions. Both philosophy and mysticism are nowadays, as previously, among interesting and popular subjects in Islamic circles and seminaries.

As a new subject in modern times, philosophy of mysticism consists of rational reflections on mysticism. A philosopher, as an outsider, studies mysticism, its reality, rudiments, methodology and relations with other things.

The present discussion covers questions such as the nature of mysticism, the validity and epistemological value of mystical findings, the difference between experience and interpretation, the relation between mysticism and reason, mystical language and the relation between mysticism and ethics.

Keywords: philosophy of mysticism, nature of mysticism, mystical language, theoretical mysticism and mysticism without God.