Al-Farabi, Founder of Islamic Neoplatonism: His Life, Works, by Majid Fakhry

By Majid Fakhry

This is often a very good resource on a tough topic. Islamic neoplatonism is a posh net of principles made fairly obtainable via this publication. Thankyou for the scholarship it should have taken to provide it.

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Additional info for Al-Farabi, Founder of Islamic Neoplatonism: His Life, Works, and Influence

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36. , p. 81. Cf. Sophistical Refutations, 181 b 10f. 26 Al-Fa¯ra¯bi, Founder of Islamic Neoplatonism In Rhetorica and Poetica, Aristotle discusses, according to al-Fa¯ra¯bi, the methods used by those who are unable to master the scientific methods of logic or attain certainty, owing to some natural impediment or preoccupation with false pursuits. In his own treatise on rhetoric, al-Fa¯ra¯bi develops further this theme, according to which persuasion (iqna¯‘ ) in all the ten categories is attempted in the same way as dialectic, which is historically posterior to rhetoric, as we have seen in his account of the genesis of philosophy.

He begins by laying down as a premise that for Aristotle the perfection of humankind cannot be attained by the knowledge of what is natural or that which is voluntary in isolation, but by the two in conjunction. Now, insofar as nature precedes will, it is incumbent on us to begin by investigating things that exist by nature and then things that exist by will or choice, so as to gain knowledge of both natural and voluntary things or activities. It was for this reason that Aristotle believed, according to al-Fa¯ra¯bi, that the inquiry should start with the determination of the nature and divisions of certain knowledge ( yaqı¯n) and how it differs from opinion (zann), as well as ˙ the other subordinate degrees of assent, such as imagination and persuasion.

As for time, he inquired whether natural objects in motion must exist in time; or whether time is an attribute of objects which is not essential for their existence. 41 This mover, identified by Aristotle with the first heaven or outermost sphere,42 imparts to the heavenly spheres their motions, which 39. 40. 41. 42. , p. 92. Physics, II, 219 b 11. Falsafat Aristuta¯lis, p. 96. ˙ 1072 a 20. Metaphysics,˙ XII, 28 Al-Fa¯ra¯bi, Founder of Islamic Neoplatonism in turn cause the motions of physical bodies in the lower world.

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