Abstracts/ Abdor Rauf Afzali

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Mental being in Islamic Philosophy

Ghulamreza Faiyyazi

There are two theories as to why Muslim philosophers have discussed about mental being. According to one theory mental being is discussed in order to prove the correspondence between mind and reality whilst best on the other, discussion about conceptual being is an ontological one ranked among external beings.

While emphasizing on the second theory, the paper shows that those who believe that in the process of knowing the quiddities of things enter into the mind are wrong and the results they have obtained from this theory are also wrong.

The theory of mental being does not solve the problem of correspondence between mind and reality. The problem of correspondence originates in mental being and to overcome it some other ways must be followed.

Keywords: mental being, quiddity, acquired knowledge, knowledge by presence.

Rationality of knowledge; a cursory glance at the consequences of the ancient approach towards epistemology

Muhammad Hossinzadeh

Within the history of philosophy, one can identify many different epistemological approaches the most important of which are:

1) Ancient approach

2) Modern approach or an approach based on modern rationalist continental philosophy begun with Descartes

3) An approach based on contemporary analytic philosophy or philosophy of English speaking countries

4) An approach based on continental philosophies such as philosophical hermeneutics, postmodernism etc., which are mostly influenced by Kantian doctrines.

So we can find presently varied epistemological approaches each of which is founded on a specific philosophical outlook and supported by certain academic circles. The present article tries to give an account of the epistemological approach of the ancients and its characteristics and explain Islamic epistemological approach that is in turn influenced by the ancient epistemological approach. It also explicates the role played by Muslim thinkers in developing the ancient epistemological approach and especially in showing its rationality against the irrationality of skepticism or absolute relativism.

Keywords: knowledge, epistemology, rationality, ancient approach, certain knowledge, skepticism.

A version of the demonstration of the truthful ones

Abd al-Rasul Ubudiyat

The commentators of Asfar have presented Mulla Sadra’s argument of the truthful ones in a variety of ways. According to the exposition presented by this article of the argument of the truthful ones, the only reasonable picture from the world of reality is that reality consists of a series of gradational beings beginning with an infinite being, namely Allah. Thus either there is no reality or if there is any reality at all it is begun with Allah.

The presentation of this exposition requires an exact explanation of gradation in beings, which in turn, is a lengthy and subtle discussion. Thus in order to make the readers acquainted with the argument without making him further confused, the writer presents the argument in three stages: short analytical form, descriptive form and detailed analytical form. Those acquainted with Islamic philosophy, can suffice to any one of these forms.

Keywords: principality of existence, gradation of being, cause-effect chain, perfection and imperfection, infinite being.

An assessment of presuppositions and arguments of principality of existence

Husain Ushshaqi

Externally realized, the principality of existence means that beings exist by themselves (not by relying on anything else) and their existence constitutes their very realities. The paper discusses this topic in tow stages: the principality of non-conditioned reality of existence and the principality of particular beings. Each of these two claims has been proved by relying on different arguments.

According to the paper the arguments for the principality of quiddity are actually the objections that are raised against the principality of existence and answered by the writer. It also deals with some other five theories concerning the real being, which are as follows:

a) Principality of quiddity and non-principality of being

b) Principality of existence and quiddity

c) «210»

Principality of existence in necessary being and principality of quiddity in possible beings.

d) Principality of quiddity that accompanies being.

The last theory is presented by Qaysari, favored by Mulla Sadra in some of his writings and supported by the author. The paper finally discusses the consequences of the principality of existence.

Keywords: principality in realization, principality of existence, being existing by itself, being existing by accident, non-principality of existence, portions of existence, non-conditioned reality of existence.

A reflection on an argument [an assessment of Allama’s argument for the necessity of the principal of reality]

Hasan Mu’allimi

The late Allama Tabatabae has presented an argument for the existence of God, which is as follows:

a) The denial of the principle of reality necessitates its substantiation.

b) Every thing, whose denial necessitates its substantiation, is a necessary being.

c) So the principle of reality is a necessary being.

In other words, if a person denies the principle of reality he or she will conclude that reality is really non-existent. The acceptance of the fact that reality is really non-existent is an admission of some reality. Thus if any body rejects reality he or she knowingly or unknowingly accepts it.

Based on the assessment presented in the paper, the word “really” in the above mentioned argument is general in nature including both existence and none-existence and therefore one cannot prove any reality by relying on it.

Keywords: Allama Tabatabae, the principle of reality, fact in itself, reality, subsistence, existence, non-existence, sophistry.

The Nature of the law of derivativeness

Askari Sulaimani Amiri

Based on the law of derivativeness, the attribution of a predicate to its subject is based on the prior existence of subject not predicate. The application of this law is encountered with objections in certain cases including attribution of essential properties to essence and existence to quiddity.

Different answers are given to these objections. One answer is that this law is not applied in simple whethernesses for the content of this kind of propositions is not attribution of a predicate to a subject. Mulla Sadra puts another yet more accurate answer forth, according to which based on the principality of being, being is not predicated of quiddity rather quiddity is predicated of being.

Based on another version of this law the attribution of predicate is not based on the prior existence of predicate; for it is possible for predicate to be non-existent. Following Avicenna, Mulla Sadra is of the view a predicate cannot be attributed to a subject unless the former is existent. Thus accidental predicate exist in one way or the other.

Keywords: the law of derivativeness, subject, predicate, simple whetherness, composite whetherness, essential predication.

Contingency in logic and philosophy

Muhammad Baqir Malikiyan

The present article is composed of two parts. The first part deals with contingency (imkan) as a mode of proposition in Aristotle as well as Muslim logicians who have, according to the article, used contingency in four different senses. The second part focuses on contingency as a philosophical term mentioning some philosophical points including: [the meaning] of contingency the ground for needing a cause, contingency as a primary intelligible, contingency as a logical secondary intelligible, or as a philosophical secondary intelligible.

Keywords: contingency, mode of proposition, general contingency, particular contingency, more particular contingency, future contingency, needing a cause, existential mode of contingency, primary intelligible, philosophical secondary intelligible, logical secondary intelligible.

Notional self-evidence: criteria and perspectives

Abbas Arefi

Being a kind of writing on the criteria of notions, the present paper tries to explain why some notions are self-evident. To do so, it focuses on some examples of notion (which previous sages considered as self-evident) studying the criteria of their being self-evident from different perspectives.

Keywords: self-evident, speculative, notion, self-evidence, criteria, notional self-evidence.

An examination of relationship between self–evidence and truth

Ahmad Sa’idi

Being an important discussion in epistemology, self-evidents are of unique importance in epistemological views expressed by epistemologists. Since such perceptions are not to be acquired therefore they can be stable foundations for acquiring other kinds of knowledge. To know the details of self-evidents, saves one from committing epistemological errors and helps him answer most of the doubts raised concerning self-evidents. The present writing explains two different but mostly ignored senses of self-evidents (and naturally two senses of speculative perceptions) comparing some of their characteristics with each other.

Noting the difference between these two senses of the term (which we call self-evident in more general sense and self-evident in more particular sense) is necessary to determine different kinds of self-evidents. For example some prepositions were considered as self-evident by previous philosophers while they are no longer considered as self-evident today.

Our objective is to show that the differences on the number of self-evidents are to a large extent not real and thus they can be ironed out on further reflections.

Keywords: self-evidents in more general sense, self-evidents in more particular sense, certain propositions.

Ayatollah Mutahhari on Moral Relativism and Absolutism

Majid Abul Qasimzadeh

One of the important problems in moral philosophy is to decide whether moral statements are relative or absolute. Those who consider human will or contract as a source of moral statements, naturally regard morality as a relative; for the source of these statements is relative and changeable.

Since Martyr Mutahhari considers moral statements as prescriptive statements, it seems very likely that he is a relativist considering moral statements as relative.

The paper tries to interpret Mutahhari’s moral views showing that he is an absolutist opposed to moral relativism. It also explains Mutahhati’s views on moral subject and predicate.

Keywords: Good and bad, ought and ought not, narration and prescription, is and ought, absolutism and relativism, moral pluralism.

Bibliography; Nature and Methods

Ibrahim Alipur

Being a sort of writing on bibliography, the paper tries to explain not only the nature and a short history of bibliography but also the different methods of modern bibliography. It also briefly compares the approach of the Research Center of the Encyclopedia of Islamic Intellectual Sciences towards bibliography with other available bibliographical approaches enumerating the privileges of the former over the latter approaches.

Keywords: bibliography, transcription, cataloguing, recording, description, summery writing, theme writing, numerical bibliography, analytical bibliography, critical bibliography, textual bibliography, historical bibliography, the science of determining copies, index.