Cumhuriyet İlahiyat Dergisi 21 (3):2009-2009 (2017)
Dâwûd al-Qarisî (Dâvûd al-Karsî) was a versatile and prolific 18th century Ottoman scholar who studied in İstanbul and Egypt and then taught for long years in various centers of learning like Egypt, Cyprus, Karaman, and İstanbul. He held high esteem for Mehmed Efendi of Birgi (Imâm Birgivî/Birgili, d.1573), out of respect for whom, towards the end of his life, Karsî, like Birgivî, occupied himself with teaching in the town of Birgi, where he died in 1756 and was buried next to Birgivî. Better known for his following works on Arabic language and rhetoric and on the prophetic traditions (hadith): Sharḥu uṣûli’l-ḥadîth li’l-Birgivî; Sharḥu’l-Ḳaṣîdati’n-nûniyya (two commentaries, in Arabic and Turkish); Şarḥu’l-Emsileti’l-mukhtalifa fi’ṣ-ṣarf (two commentaries, in Arabic and Turkish); Sharḥu’l-Binâʾ; Sharḥu’l-ʿAvâmil; and Sharḥu İzhâri’l-asrâr, Karsî has actually composed textbooks in quite different fields. Hence the hundreds of manuscript copies of his works in world libraries. Many of his works were also recurrently printed in the Ottoman period. One of the neglected aspects of Karsî is his identity as a logician. Although he authored ambitious and potent works in the field of logic, this aspect of him has not been subject to modern studies. Even his bibliography has not been established so far (with scattered manuscript copies of his works and incomplete catalogue entries). This article primarily and in a long research based on manuscript copies and bibliographic sources, identifies twelve works on logic that Karsî has authored. We have clarified the works that are frequently mistaken for each other, and, especially, have definitively established his authorship of a voluminous commentary on al-Kâtibî’s al-Shamsiyya, of which commentary a second manuscript copy has been identified and described together with the other copy. Next is handled his most famous work of logic, the Sharhu Îsâghûcî, which constitutes an important and assertive ring in the tradition of commentaries on Îsâghûcî. We describe in detail the nine manuscript copies of this work that have been identified in various libraries. The critical text of Karsî’s Sharhu Îsâghûcî, whose composition was finished on 5 March 1745, has been prepared based on the following four manuscripts: (1) MS Kayseri Raşid Efendi Kütüphanesi, No. 857, ff.1v-3v, dated 1746, that is, only one year after the composition of the work; (2) MS Bursa İnebey Yazma Eser Kütüphanesi, Genel, No.794B, ff.96v-114v, dated 1755; (3) MS Millet Kütüphanesi, Ali Emiri Efendi Arapça, No. 1752, ff.48v-58r, dated 1760; (4) MS Beyazıt Yazma Eser Kütüphanesi, Beyazıt, No. 3129, ff.41v-55v, dated 8 March 1772. While preparing the critical text, we have applied the Center for Islamic Studies (İslam Araştırmaları Merkezi, İSAM)’s method of optional text choice. The critical text is preceded by a content analysis. Karsî is well aware of the preceding tradition of commentary on Îsâghûcî, and has composed his own commentary as a ‘simile’ or alternative to the commentary by Mollâ Fanârî which was famous and current in his own day. Karsî’s statement “the commentary in one day and one night” is a reference to Mollâ Fanârî who had stated that he started writing his commentary in the morning and finished it by the evening. Karsî, who spent long years in the Egyptian scholarly and cultural basin, adopted the religious-sciences-centered ‘instrumentalist’ understanding of logic that was dominant in the Egypt-Maghrib region. Therefore, no matter how famous they were, he criticized those theoretical, long, and detailed works of logic which mingled with philosophy; and defended and favored authoring functional and cogent logic texts that were beneficial, in terms of religious sciences, to the seekers of knowledge and the scholars. Therefore, in a manner not frequently encountered in other texts of its kind, he refers to the writings and views of Muhammad b. Yûsuf al-Sanûsî (d.1490), the great representative of this logical school in the Egyptian-Maghrib region. Where there is divergence between the views of the ‘earlier scholars’ (mutaqaddimûn) like Ibn Sînâ and his followers and the ‘later scholars’ (muta’akhkhirûn), i.e., post-Fakhr al-dîn al-Râzî logicians, Karsî is careful to distance himself from partisanship, preferring sometimes the views of the earliers, other times those of the laters. For instance, on the eight conditions proposed for the realization of contradiction, he finds truth to be with al-Fârâbî, who proposed “unity in the predicative attribution” as the single condition for the realization of contradiction. Similarly, on the subject matter of Logic, he tried to reconcile the mutaqaddimûn’s notion of ‘second intelligibles’ with the muta’akhkhirûn’s notion of ‘apprehensional and declarational knowledge,’ suggesting that not much difference exists between the two, on the grounds that both notions are limited to the aspect of ‘known things that lead to the knowledge of unknown things.’ Karsî asserts that established and commonly used metaphors have, according to the verifying scholars, signification by correspondence (dalâlat al-mutâbaqah), adding also that it should not be ignored that such metaphors may change from society to society and from time to time. Karsî also endorses the earlier scholars’ position concerning the impossibility of quiddity (mâhiyya) being composed of two co-extensive parts, and emphasizes that credit should not be given to later scholars’ position who see it possible. According to the verifying scholars (muhaqqîqûn), it is possible to make definition (hadd) by mentioning only difference (fasl), in which case it becomes an imperfect definition (hadd nâqis). He is of the opinion that the definition of the proposition (qadiyya) in al-Taftâzânî’s Tahdhîb is clearer and more complete: “a proposition is an expression that bears the possibility of being true or false”. He states that in the division of proposition according to quantity what is taken into consideration is the subject (mawdû‘) in categorical propositions, and the temporal aspect of the antecedent (muqaddam) in hypothetical propositions. As for the unquantified, indefinite proposition (qadiyya muhmalah), Karsî assumes that if it is not about the problems of the sciences, then it is virtually/potentially a particular proposition (qadiyya juz’iyyah); but if it is about the problems of the sciences, then it is virtually/potentially a universal proposition (qadiyya kulliyyah). This being the general rule about the ambiguous (muhmal) propositions, he nevertheless contends that, because its subject (mawdû‘) is negated, it is preferable to consider a negative ambiguous (sâliba muhmalah) proposition like “human (insân) is not standing” to be a virtually/potentially universal negative (sâliba kulliyyâh) proposition. He states that a disjunctive hypothetical proposition (shartiyya al-munfasila) that is composed of more than two parts/units is only seemingly so, and that in reality it cannot be composed of more than two units. Syllogism (qiyâs), according to Karsî, is the ultimate purpose (al-maqsad al-aqsâ) and the most valuable subject-matter of the science of Logic. For him, the entire range of topics that are handled before this one are only prolegomena to it. This approach of Karsî clearly reveals how much the ‘demonstration (burhân)-centered’ approach of the founding figures of the Muslim tradition of logic like al-Fârâbî and Ibn Sînâ has changed. al-Abharî, in his Îsâghûjî makes no mention of ‘conversion by contradiction’ (‘aks al-naqîd). Therefore, Karsî, too, in his commentary, does not touch upon the issue. However, in his Îsâghûjî al-jadîd Karsî does handle the conversion by contradiction and its rules. Following the method of Îsâghûjî, in his commentary Karsî shortly touches on the four figures (shakl) of conjuctive syllogism (qiyâs iqtirânî) and their conditions, after which he passes to the first figure (shakl), which is considered ‘the balance of the sciences’ (mi‘yâr al-‘ulûm), explaining the four moods (darb) of it. In his Îsâghûjî al-jadîd, however, Karsî handles all the four figures (shakl) with all their related moods (darb), where he speaks of fife moods (darb) of the fourth figure (shakl). The topic of ‘modal propositions’ (al-muwajjahât) and of ‘modal syllogism’ (al-mukhtalitât), both of which do not take place in the Îsâghûjî, are not mentioned by Karsî as well, either in his commentary on Îsâghûjî or in his Îsâghûjî al-jadîd. Karsî proposes that the certainties (yaqîniyyât), of which demonstration (burhân) is made, have seven, not six, divisions. After mentioning (1) axioms/first principles (awwaliyyât), (2) observata/sensuals (mushâhadât), (3) experta/empiricals (mujarrabât), (4) acumenalia (hadthiyyât), (5) testata (mutawâtirât), and (6) instictives (fitriyyât), that is, all the ‘propositions accompanied by their demonstrations,’ Karsî states that these six divisions, which do not need research and reflection (nazar), are called badîhiyyât (self-evidents), and constitute the foundations (usûl) of certainties (yaqîniyyât). As the seventh division he mentions (7) the nazariyyât (theoreticals), which are known via the badîhiyyât, end up in them, and therefore convey certainty (yaqîn). For Karsî, the nazariyyât/theoreticals, which constitute the seventh division of yaqîniyyât/certainties, are too numerous, and constitute the branches (far‘) of yaqîniyyât. Every time the concept of ‘Mughâlata’ (sophistry) comes forth in the traditional sections on the five arts usually appended to logic works, Karsî often gives examples from what he sees as extreme sûfî sayings, lamenting that these expressions are so widespread and held in esteem. He sometimes criticizes these expressions. However, it is observed that he does not reject tasawwuf in toto, but excludes from his criticism the mystical views and approaches of the truth-abiding (ahl al-haqq), shârî‘â-observant (mutasharri‘) leading sufis who have reached to the highest level of karâmah.
|Keywords||Logic Logic in Islamic Philosophy Logic in the Ottoman Thought Commentary on Īsāghūjī|
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Post-Avicennan Logicians on the Subject Matter of Logic: Some Thirteenth- and Fourteenth-Century Discussions.Khaled El-Rouayheb - 2012 - Arabic Sciences and Philosophy 22 (1):69-90.
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