Entries by simar

Love in Islamic Thought – William C. Chittick

Abstract: Western studies of Islam have paid relatively little attention to love. Early scholars were heirs to a long history of European animosity toward this upstart religion and tended to assume that love was a Christian monopoly. When Muslim writing on love did come to their attention, they typically considered it peripheral or borrowed, often […]

Avicenna’s Theodicy and al-Rāzī’s Anti-Theodicy

Abstract: Avicenna’s Neoplatonic account of divine providence and theodicy was hugely influential on later philosophical and religious thought in the Islamic world. However, it was severely criticised by one of his earlier commentators, the theologian-philosopher Faḫr al-Dīn al-Rāzī (d. 606/1210). While Avicenna champions an optimist theodicean thesis of a plenitude of good to support the […]

The Epistle of Ya qub ibn Isha¯q al-Kind on the Device for Dispelling Sorrows

ABSTRACT Although less technical philosophically than many of al-Kind‡ ¯’s known treatises, this Epistle remains basic for understandin g the spirit that underlies his thinking. Socratic, yet very Kindian in spirit, this Epistle displays its author’s tendency to harmonize Greek philosophy and Islam, particularl y as this relates to ethics, and his belief in man’s […]

Ḥayy ibn Yaqẓān’s Parable of the Two Generous Men in Avicenna’s Decree and Determination (R. fī l-Qaḍāʾ wa-l-qadar)

Abstract This article explores Avicenna’s conception of divine providence in the light of his allegorical work Decree and Determination (R. fī l-Qaḍāʾ wa-l-qadar), wherein the philosopher stages interactions between the rational soul, the animal soul, and the Active Intelligence. Centering on the parable of the two generous men told in Decree and Determination by the […]


Abstract: There are complete translations of the Mathnawí in Turkish[1], Arabic[2], and Hindustani[3], but only the first two of the six Books of the poem have hitherto been made accessible in their entirety to European readers, though a number of extracts from Books III–VI are translated in E. H. Whinfield’s useful abridgment. While it may […]

The Qur’an and its Interpretive Tradition. By Andrew Rippin.

The Qur’an and its Interpretive Tradition. By Andrew Rippin. (Variorum Collected Studies Series). Pp. 356. Aldershot and Burlington: Ashgate, 2001. £62.50. Each volume of the Variorum Collected Studies Series musters long term writings by some noteworthy scholar (in this case, one of the biggest names in Qur’anic studies in the West); by grouping articles on […]

The Significance of Human Attire

Abstract: Along with food and shelter, clothing must rank among the most important but least analyzed sites of colonization. And even those works that do examine the connection between colonization and clothing focus almost entirely on the material dimension of dress. Few works, if any, take the necessary additional step of defining clothing as a […]

The Door Of Mercy Kenan Rifai And Sufism Today

Actionless Action Mohammed Rustom It has indeed been a blessing to sit with the great Kenan Rifai’s com­ mentary upon book one of Mevlana’s Mesnevi Spending time with this book naturally led me to Kenan Rifai’s explanation of a famous tale in the centered around ‘Ali b. Abi Talib. The tale is retold from……… (link […]

The Worldview of Islamic Philosophy

Abstract: Philosophy’s relation to the Islamic tradition has often been debated In modern stud­-ies. A good number of the experts consider the relation tenuous, and others disagree.The difference of opinion has much to do with differing understandings of the keyterms of the debate. No one seems to have doubted that at least some of the […]

The Embodiment of Gratitude (Shukr) in Sufi Ethics by Atif Khalil

Abstarct: It has been argued that in the tradition of Western ethics there have beentwo general approaches to gratitude. There is first of all a view found mostlyamong modern moral philosophers which treats the given virtue as a set offeelings and attitudes. The grateful person is obliged first and foremost to sincerelyacknowledge the benefaction before […]