After a very brief introduction, Davidson begins with an informed and detailed account of the views of Aristotle and his major commentators, whose writings had enormous influence on the development of the medieval traditions. Davidson's account is supplemented with a critical exposition of the relevant teachings from the Plotiniana Arabica, from al-Kindi, and from a treatise on the soul attributed to Porphyry in the Arabic tradition. Impressive as all this is, it is simply stage setting for Davidson's detailed accounts of (...) the doctrines and arguments of al-Farabi, Avicenna, and Averroes. (shrink)
IT HAS BEEN characteristic of metaphysics, since the beginning of philosophy, to deny the reality of time. The characteristics ascribed to it by unreflective people, particularly that of passage, have seemed so puzzling and paradoxical that the metaphysical temperament has preferred to banish time altogether rather than embrace those paradoxes. Thus Parmenides, the earliest metaphysician, denied reality to all time and becoming, leaving his bleak and changeless conception of reality to be perfected by his pupil Zeno. Plato, too, declared that (...) reality can only be the eternal, describing the strange passage of time in which we mortals live as nothing but that eternity's moving image. Among modern philosophers Spinoza sounded the same note, being unable to think of any reality in which time, by itself, could make a difference, while Immanuel Kant reduced it to a mere form of sensibility. Among recent thinkers McTaggart comes at once to mind, with his proofs that the concept of time is simply self-contradictory. (shrink)
Philosophy written in Arabic and in the Islamic world represents one of the great traditions of Western philosophy. Inspired by Greek philosophical works and the indigenous ideas of Islamic theology, Arabic philosophers from the ninth century onwards put forward ideas of great philosophical and historical importance. This collection of essays, by some of the leading scholars in Arabic philosophy, provides an introduction to the field by way of chapters devoted to individual thinkers or groups, especially during the 'classical' period from (...) the ninth to the twelfth centuries. It also includes chapters on areas of philosophical inquiry across the tradition, such as ethics and metaphysics. Finally, it includes chapters on later Islamic thought, and on the connections between Arabic philosophy and Greek, Jewish, and Latin philosophy. The volume also includes a useful bibliography and a chronology of the most important Arabic thinkers. (shrink)
MicroRNAs are non‐coding regulators of gene expression and key factors in development, disease, and targets for bioengineering. Consequently, microRNAs have become essential elements of already burgeoning draft plant genome descriptions where their annotation is often particularly poor, contributing unduly to the corruption of public databases. Using the Citrus sinensis as an example, we highlight and review common failings of miRNAome annotations. Understanding and exploiting the role of miRNAs in plant biology will be stymied unless the research community acts decisively to (...) improve the accuracy of miRNAome annotations. We encourage genome annotation teams to do it right or not at all. (shrink)
Averroes asserts in his Long Commentary on the De Anima and in his Long Commentary on the Metaphysics that principles of the science of metaphysics are established in the science of psychology. In psychology, human intellectual understanding is found to require the separate agent intellect for the coming to be of knowledge. The analysis of human psychology establishes that intellect must exist and must be separate from the human being in existence. Moreover there exists potency in those things called intellect, (...) thanks to the argument for the existence of the material intellect. (shrink)
The Muslim philosopher Ibn Rushd or, as he is known in the West, Averroes, is unique in the history of philosophy. He represents the culmination of one philosophical tradition in an Islamic cultural context, and he may perhaps also be considered chief initiator of another in the Latin Christian cultural context.
Born in 1126 to a family of Maliki legal scholars, Ibn Rushd, known as Averroes, enjoyed a long career in religious jurisprudence at Seville and Cordoba while at the same time advancing his philosophical studies of the works of Aristotle. This translation of Averroes’ Long Commentary on Aristotle’s _De Anima_ brings to English-language readers the complete text of this influential work of medieval philosophy. Richard C. Taylor provides rich notes on the Long Commentary and a generous introduction that discusses Averroes’ (...) most mature reflections on Aristotle’s teachings as well as Averroes' comprehensive philosophical views on soul and intellect. It is only in the Long Commentary that Averroes finally resolves to his satisfaction the much vexed issue of the nature of intellect, Taylor shows. (shrink)
This article explicates Averroes's understanding of human knowing and abstraction in this three commentaries on Aristotle's De Anima. While Averroes's views on the nature of the human material intellect changes through the three commentaries until he reaches is famous view of the unity of the material intellect as one for all human beings, his view of the agent intellect as 'form for us' is sustained throughout these works. In his Long Commentary on the De Anima he reveals his dependence on (...) al-Fârâbî for this notion and provides a detailed critique of the Farabian notion that the agent intellect is 'form for us' only as agent cause, not as our true formal cause. Although Averroes argues that the agent intellect must somehow be intrinsic to us as our form since humans are per se rational and undertake acts of knowing by will, his view is shown to rest on an equivocal use of the notion of formal cause. The agent intellect cannot be properly our intrinsic formal principle while remaining ontologically separate. (shrink)
This valuable reference work synthesizes and elucidates traditional themes and issues in Islamic philosophy as well as prominent topics emerging from the last twenty years of scholarship. Written for a wide readership of students and scholars, The Routledge Companion to Islamic Philosophy is unique in including coverage of both perennial philosophical issues in an Islamic context and also distinct concerns that emerge from Islamic religious thought. This work constitutes a substantial affirmation that Islamic philosophy is an integral part of the (...) Western philosophical tradition. Featuring 33 chapters, divided into seven thematic sections, this volume explores the major areas of philosophy: Logic, Metaphysics, Philosophy in the Sciences, Philosophy of Mind/Epistemology, and Ethics/Politics as well as philosophical issues salient in Islamic revelation, theology, prophecy, and mysticism. Other features include: •A focus on both the classical and post-classical periods •A contributing body that includes both widely respected scholars from around the world and a handful of the very best younger scholars •"Reference" and "Further Reading" sections for each chapter and a comprehensive index for the whole volume The result is a work that captures Islamic philosophy as philosophy. In this way it serves students and scholars of philosophy and religious studies and at the same time provides valuable essays relevant to the study of Islamic thought and theology. (shrink)
L'A. esamina in particolare il Commento grande al De anima. In primo luogo evidenzia l'insegnamento averroista in relazione al tema dell'intelletto e dell'individuo, in secondo luogo esamina alcune proposizioni relative all'immortalità dell'anima individuale, ma sottolinea la difficoltà di conciliare tali affermazioni di Averroè con la dottrina dell'intelletto. L'ultima parte dello studio propone un esame critico del recente studio di O.N. Mohammed, Averroes, Aristotle, and the Qur'an on Immortality «International Philosophical Quarterly» 33 37-55.
Do our lives have meaning? Should we create more people? Is death bad? Should we commit suicide? Would it be better if we were immortal? Should we be optimistic or pessimistic? Life, Death, and Meaning brings together key readings, primarily by English-speaking philosophers, on such 'big questions.'.
Prophecy is conspicuous by its complete absence from all three of the commentaries on De Anima by Averroes. However, prophecy and philosophical metaphysics are discussed by him in his Commentary on the Parva Naturalia, a work written before his methodological work on philosophy and religion, the Faṣl al-maqāl, generally held to have been written ca. 1179-1180. The analyses and remarks of Averroes presented in that Commentary have been characterized by Herbert Davidson as “extremely radical” to the extent that “The term (...) prophet would, on this reading, mean nothing more than the human author of Scripture; and the term revelation would mean a high level of philosophical knowledge”. In the present article I discuss Averroes on method in matters of religion and philosophy as well as prophecy in philosophically argumentative works and in dialectical works, with particular consideration of the reasoning of his Commentary on the Parva Naturalia. I conclude that Averroes found in philosophy and its sciences the most complete and precise truth content and highest levels of knowledge and understanding and from them constructed his worldview, while he found prophecy and religion to be like an Aristotelian practical science in that they concern good and right conduct in the achievement of an end attained in action, not truths to be known for their own sake. (shrink)
Abu al-Walid Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Rushd, who came to be known in the Latin West as Averroes, was born at Cordoba into a family prominent for its expert devotion to the study and development of religious law. In Arabic sources al-Hafid is added to his name to distinguish him from his grandfather, a famous Malikite jurist who served the ruling Almoravid regime as qadi and even as imam at the magnificent Great Mosque which still stands today in (...) the city of Averroes' birth and where Averroes himself served as Grand Qadi. When the governing regime changed with the success of 'Abd al-Mu'min, founder of the Almohad dynasty, the members of the family continued to flourish under a new religious orientation based on the teachings of the reformer, al-Mah. di ibn Tumart. Although insistent on the strict adherence to religious law, Ibn Tumart's teachings were at the same time equally insistent on the essential rationality of human understanding of the existence and unity of God and his creation as well as the rationality of the Qur'an and its interpretation. (shrink)