The Divine Word in Islamic Art – Seyyed Hossein Nasr

The Divine Word and Islamic Art

The Word of Allah is the origin and principle of Islamic art par excellence. Just as the Word descends from the unseen and unmanifest order to the visible and material realm, so too does the art that is based upon it descend from the ‘formless’ sonoral level to the formal visual plane. And just as the Word, once having entered the formal plane of calligraphy, ‘develops’ horizontally by becoming ever more complex, similarly Islamic art unfolds its diverse possibilities through the course of history and in numerous Muslim cultures. By continuously reaffirming the presence of the One in the many and Unity in diversity, Islamic art, through its multifarious forms, allows for all Muslims to gain access to the spiritual journey back to the Origin from which the Divine Word issues.

Islamic Art and Spirituality

Islamic Art and Spirituality

By Seyyed Hossein Nasr


Islamic Art has been the subject of study by Western scholars since the nineteenth century and by Western-trained
Muslim savants for several decades. It has, moreover, come to receive special attention during the past two or three
decades by the larger public as a distinct category of art. Numerous works have appeared in nearly every European
language on the history, technical formation, social setting, and other aspects of this art. A few books and articles
have been devoted to its spiritual significance and meaning, but these have been few and far between. Except for
the writings of T. Burckhardt, which cast special light upon the intellectual, symbolic, and spiritual dimensions of
Islamic art, there are very few works which look upon Islamic art as the manifestation in the world of forms of the
spiritual realities (al-haqa’iq) of the Islamic revelation itself as coloured by its earthly embodiments……………..

Nasr, Seyyed Hossein – Islamic Art and Spirituality

An Introduction to Islamic Cosmological Doctrines

An Introduction to
Islamic Cosmological


This study opens up a relatively unexplored, hence unfamiliar,
aspect of Islam. The ~ajority of mo?ern Muslim ration~lists will no
doubt join in chorus with the formalist orthodox theologians to deny
that its subject can be identified with Islam “in any true sense.” But
their perspective is false. The theme of Seyyed Hossein Nasr’s study
is one no less vital than the tracing out of one line in the complex process
by which the Islamic Community gradually discovered its own
nature and habitat…………………………………………..




The Male and Female in the Islamic Perspective

The Male and Female in the Islamic Perspective

by Seyyed Hossein Nasr

“O Mankind! Lo! We have created you male and female… The noblest among you, in the sight of Allah, is the best in conduct.” (Quran 49:13)

The Male and Female in the Islamic Perspective 



Islam and the Environment

The Qur’an addresses not only human beings, but also the cosmos. All creatures participate in Islam. It is much easier to be able to develop an environmental philosophy which will not be incongruent or artificial as if you would add an artificial tail to a donkey. It is part and parcel of the Islamic world view.”

Dr. Seyyed Hossein Nasr


Download the CBC Ideas with Paul Kennedy featuring Dr. Seyyed Hossein Nasr





The Spiritual and Religious Dimensions of the Environmental Crisis – Seyyed Hossein Nasr

The spiritual and religious dimensions of the environmental crisis – Seyyed Hossein Nasr

Introduction to Metaphysics

Introduction to Metaphysics Part 1: The Supreme Science of Islam


Introduction to Metaphysics Part 2: The nature of reality


Introduction to Metaphysics Part 3: Science


Contemporary Man, between the Rim and the Axis

Come you lost Atoms to your Centre draw,
And be the Eternal Mirror that you saw :
Rays that have wander’d into Darkness wide
Return, and back into your Sun subside.
(Farīd al-Din ‘Attār)


Contemporary Man, between the Rim and the Axis copy

Dr. Seyyed Hossein Nasr – “Philosophy Matters”

An Introduction to Islamic Philosophy