Abstract In 2006, the Turkish Harun Yahya Enterprise published and distributed thousands of copies of its anti‐evolutionary text Atlas of Creation to educational institutes in the West. Although this was little more than a publicity stunt, it resulted in Harun Yahya becoming a mainstay in discussions about creationism in Europe. Although Yahya is often presented as the “go to” representative of European Muslim perceptions of evolution, one would be hard pressed to find the literature about Islamic creationism in Europe that (...) does not engage in a discussion of Harun Yahya. However, little evidence exists to support the notion that Harun Yahya warrants such extensive attention, or that Harun Yahya has a substantive influence among European Muslims. This article will explore existing claims about the popularity of Harun Yahya, before drawing on recent research into Muslim perceptions of evolution to argue that Harun Yahya is relatively unknown among Muslims, at least in the British context, and is not influential even among those who are familiar with his work. (shrink)
The “lost” Yaḥyā ibn ʿAdī treatises recently discovered in the Tehran codex Marwī 19 include a record of a philosophical debate instigated by the Ḥamdānid prince Sayf-al-Dawla. More precisely, Marwī 19 contains Yaḥyā’s adjudication of a dispute between an unnamed Opponent and Yaḥyā’s younger relative Ibrāhīm ibn ʿAdī (who also served as al-Fārābī’s assistant), along with Ibrāhīm's response to Yaḥyā’s adjudication, and Yaḥyā’s final word. At issue was a problem of Aristotelian exegesis: should “body” be understood as falling under the (...) category of substance or under the category of quantity? The unnamed Opponent argues that body is a species of substance; Ibrāhīm argues that technically speaking, body is a species of quantity, and hence an accident; and Yaḥyā judges that body is a species of substance, though for very different reasons than the Opponent gives. For the first time, the Arabic text of this exchange is edited and translated into English. Also provided is an Introduction that sets the debate in historical context, and discusses in particular the possible influence of John Philoponus. The debate is interesting and important not only because of the philosophical ramifications of the issues under discussion, but because it constitutes evidence of dialectical practice among Arabic-speaking philosophers from the middle of the 10th century. (shrink)
This piece offers an edition, translation, and analysis of a newly discovered text by Yaḥyā Ibn ʿAdī, a leading Aristotelian of the Baghdad school in the tenth century. It briefly discusses what Aristotle meant, at the end of the Physics, by saying that the Prime Mover is “in” the outermost heaven. Ibn ʿAdī argues, in part through an exhaustive discussion of the senses of the word “in,” that God is in the sphere only in the sense that an object of (...) intellection is in an intellect. This solution is discussed against the background of ancient commentaries on the same passage. (shrink)
The ethnic-Chinese business is often characterised by a central role of the family both in the structure of the firm and in its corporate culture. This has political, social as well as cultural reasons. The centrality of the family in business has its advantages and disadvantages. On the one hand, it enables a fast, efficient and flexible process of decision-making. On the other hand, it often contradicts modern business professionalism. The younger generation of ethnic-Chinese business actors tend to preserve crucial (...) elements of such family-centred characteristics. Yet, globalisation drives them to transform their business style, lessening its dependence on family resources and adopting more-modern professional ideas. Changes in current political situation, religious-cultural trend, demography and education contribute to making possible the transformation. (shrink)
Avicenna's analysis of the definition of substance and accident repeatedly emphasizes two points: one and the same essence cannot be substance in one instance and accident in another; whetherxis extrinsic or intrinsic for an underlying subject,ydoes not tell us anything as to whetherxis substance or not. Both points are development in an argument against certain unnamed people who claimed the opposite. In this article I will show that Avicenna's opponents are to be identified with the mainstream Baghdad Peripatetic School which (...) based itself on the Late Antique rule that “parts of substances are substances”. As for Avicenna's own position, it was developed on the basis of the heterodox position of Yaḥyā b. ʿAdī, who anticipated Avicenna's first point. This is a further piece of evidence for something that has only recently begun to be appreciated: the influence of Ibn ʿAdī on Avicenna.RésuméL’analyse d’Avicenne portant sur les définitions de la substance et de l’accident met en exergue les deux propositions suivantes: 1) la même essence ne peut être à la fois une substance dans un cas et un accident dans un autre; 2) le fait quexsoit extrinsèque ou intrinsèque à unysous-jacent ne nous permet pas de conclure quexest une substance. Ces deux propositions sont articulées dans un débat avec d’autres personnes ayant un point de vue opposé dont on ne connaît pas l’identité. Dans cet article, nous verrons que ces adversaires font partie de l’école péripatétique de Bagdad, qui elle-même s’appuie sur une proposition datant de l’Antiquité tardive et selon laquelle les parties de substances sont elles-mêmes des substances. La position d’Avicenne fut développée à partir de celle de Yaḥyā b. ʿAdī. Cet article apporte ainsi un argument nouveau qui met en évidence l’influence, remarquée seulement depuis peu, d’Ibn ʿAdī sur Avicenne. (shrink)
Alternative food movements work to create more environmentally and economically sustainable food systems, but vary widely in their advocacy for social, racial and environmental justice. However, even those food justice activists explicitly dedicated to equity must respond to the unintended consequences of their work. This paper analyzes the work of activists in Oakland, CA, who have increasingly realized that their gardens, health food stores and farm-to-table restaurants play a role in what scholars have called green gentrification, the upscaling of neighborhoods (...) through the creation of environmental amenities. Gentrification has had grave consequences for the low-income communities of color that food justice activists seek to serve. Activists are reflexive about this dynamic, and have developed strategies to push back against displacement. Most commonly, non-profit organizations and individual social entrepreneurs found businesses that seek to raise the profile of people of color in the trendy Oakland food scene while employing long-term residents in well-paying, green jobs. However, while these efforts are an essential component of a broader agenda to create both food justice and development without displacement, even these relatively high paying “good food jobs” cannot keep up with escalating rents. For this reason, we also highlight the direct action and policy-oriented strategies engaged by a smaller number of food justice activists, and argue that these are necessary compliments to a market-based approach. (shrink)
This article offers an analysis, translation, and edition of a brief, recently uncovered Arabic text by the tenth-century CE Christian Aristotelian thinker Yaḥyā ibn ʿAdī. Ibn ʿAdī here takes issue with an argument for the existence of God, widely used in kalām. According to this argument, bodies cannot exist without being either in motion or at rest; motion and rest must begin; therefore all bodies and hence the universe as a whole must have begun. Ibn ʿAdī diagnoses various flaws in (...) this reasoning, including a supposed part–whole fallacy. The analysis of the text shows how it fits into Ibn ʿAdī’s intellectual profile and the project of the Baghdad Aristotelian school. (shrink)
I scrutinize the ideas and works of the Turkish religious leader and author Adnan Oktar/Harun Yahya. I argue for a new definition of Yahya as the representative of what I call theoscientography, proposing to study his work according to such a model rather than in the light of his “Islamic creationism”.
L'A. confronta due commenti su quello che nel mondo arabo viene considerato il primo libro della Metaphysica di Aristotele: alpha Elatton. Dopo averne delineato i contenuti e la penetrazione nel mondo arabo grazie alle traduzioni di Ustat e Ishaq ibn Hunayn, l'A. esamina due importanti commenti a quest'opera: Yahyá Ibn 'Adi, un commentatore cristiano della scuola di Baghdad e Averroè . I due autori leggono il testo in modo molto diverso: questo suggerisce una grande differenza tra Averroè e la (...) scuola di Baghdad, sebbene il filosofo andaluso abbia ammirato e seguito il lavoro di al-Farabi. In particolare è naturale il rifiuto da parte di Averroè di introdurre un'inchiesta puramente teologica nella trattazione, punto accettato invece da Ibn 'Adi, secondo il proposito di Averroè di rimarcare il fondamento fisico della metafisica, come è possibile comprendere soprattutto grazie alla lettura del Trattato. (shrink)
Under the title The Reformation of Morals , the tenth-century Syrian Orthodox scholar Yahya ibn 'Adi offered encouragement to the effort to promote moral perfection, especially among kings and other members of the social elite: his tract, on the social virtues and vices, gives extensive advice about the cultivation of the former and the extirpation of the latter. Where there are many echoes of Hellenistic moral philosophy in his presentation, the topical profile of the work and the language the author (...) uses reveal his participation in the Baghdad circle of philosophers and intellectuals--both Christian and Muslim--who were responsible for much that has come to be regarded as typical of the classical culture of the Islamic world. In fact, this text has occasionally been attributed to one or another famous Muslim author. It now stands as an important Christian contribution, in Arabic, to a strand of moral philosophy that is an integral component of the intellectual tradition of the world of Islam. (shrink)
This treatise on the nature and levels of the human soul considers the limitations of human senses and our true or theomorphic essence; the various realms or Centers, including Absolute Mind as well as Ordinary Mind and Divine Mind; the nature of firmaments; and the meaning of pleasure and pain.
Shihab al-Din al-Suhrawardi was born around 1154, probably in northwestern Iran. Spurred by a dream in which Aristotle appeared to him, he rejected the Avicennan Peripatetic philosophy of his youth and undertook the task of reviving the philosophical tradition of the "Ancients." Suhruwardi's philosophy grants an epistemological role to immediate and atemporal intuition. It is explicitly anti-Peripatetic and is identified with the pre-Aristotelian sages, particularly Plato. The subject of his hikmat al-Ishraq --now available for the first time in English--is the (...) "science of lights," a science that Suhrawardi first learned through mystical exercises reinforced later by logical proofs and confirmed by what he saw as the parallel experiences of the Ancients. It was completed on 15 September 1186 and at sunset that evening, in the western sky, the sun, the moon, and the five visible planets came together in a magnificent conjunction in the constellation of Libra. The stars soon turned against Suhrawardi, however, who was reluctantly put to death by the son of Saladin, the sultan of Egypt, in 1191. (shrink)
After the problems of epistemology, the most fundamental problem of Islamic philosophy is that of causality. Causality has been studied from various perspectives. This paper endeavors first to analyze the issues of causality in Islamic philosophy and then to critique them. A sketch is provided of the history of the development of theories of causality in Islamic philosophy, with particular attention to how religious considerations came to determine the shape of the philosophical theories that were accepted. It is suggested that (...) outstanding philosophical and theological problems that have plagued the tradition of Islamic philosophy require a new approach to the issue of causality. (shrink)