Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Flow charting medieval Muslim philosophy

Here is an attempt to place the influence on and from medieval Muslim philosophy. It is taken from Islamic Philosophy Online (tip Laura Sizer): Ah. Why can't all history be taught with flow-charts? Its so much better when you eliminate all the nuances and complexities. Actually, it does provide a good broad picture. Couple of minor quibbles. Some of the arrows should be bi-directional - especially between Persian and Greek & Roman philosophy, and also between Hindu/Chinese and Persian philosophy. Also, why Medieval Jewish philosophy is left stranded after the Muslim influence? The influence of Moses Maimonides alone would warrant an arrow connecting Medieval Jewish philosophy to Early to Modern European philosophy.

The original Flow of Influence here.

5 comments:

Awais said...

Interesting!

ungtss said...

Also, why is Medieval Jewish Philosophy described as completely derivative of Islamic? Not only did it influence others later, but surely it had other influences itself.

Also rather oddly, the chart fails to acknowledge the ancient Greek influence on Islamic philosophy (directly from Aristotle)

Seems like a self-serving view of history, placing their specialty (Islamic philosophy) at the heart of the development of philosophy, and making Modern philosophy dependant on it, placing Jewish philosophy completely derivative of it, and denying its debts directly to the Greek paganism of Aristotle.

Salman Hameed said...

Also, why is Medieval Jewish Philosophy described as completely derivative of Islamic? Not only did it influence others later, but surely it had other influences itself.

It is possible that they are referring to the special branch that was particularly influenced by the Mutazilla theology/philosophy. But I agree that over all there are more influences than are being depicted here.

Also rather oddly, the chart fails to acknowledge the ancient Greek influence on Islamic philosophy (directly from Aristotle)

This is probably correct in the flow chart. Early translations of Greek/Roman works into Arabic often attributed neo-Platoinist ideas to Aristotle. In fact, if I remember correctly, it was Ibn-Rushd (12th century) who weened out Aristotle's ideas from the mix and wrote commentaries on those. Later on, Aristotle was known as "the philosopher" and Ibn-Rushd as "the commentator" - no need for their names.

Despite of its short-comings, I think the flow-chart still does a good job of painting a broad picture.

Anonymous said...

cheap wedding gowns,
discount bridal gowns,
China wedding dresses,
discount designer wedding dresses,
China wedding online store,
plus size wedding dresses,
cheap informal wedding dresses,
junior bridesmaid dresses,
cheap bridesmaid dresses,
maternity bridesmaid dresses,
discount flower girl gowns,
cheap prom dresses,
party dresses,
evening dresses,
mother of the bride dresses,
special occasion dresses,
cheap quinceanera dresses,
hot red wedding dresses

Anonymous said...

May I suggest the following Book:

How Early Muslim Scholars Assimilated Aristotle and Made Iran the intellectual Center of the Islamic World: A Study of Falsafah

by Farshad Sadri
Publisher: Edwin Mellen Press (June 2010)

This work demonstrates how falsafah (which linguistically refers to a group of commentaries by Muslim scholars associated with their readings of "The Corpus Aristotelicum") in Iran has been always closely linked with religion. It demonstrates that the blending of the new natural theology with Iranian culture created an intellectual climate that made Iran the center of falsafah in the Medieval world. The author begins this book by exploring the analytical arguments and methodologies presented as the subject of the first-philosophy (metaphysics) in the works of Aristotle (in particular "The Nicomachean Ethics" and "Rhetoric"). Then, he tells the tale of the Muslims' progression as they came to own and expand upon Aristotle's arguments and methodologies as a measure of their own sense of spirituality. Last, Sadri surveys the implications of that sense of spirituality as it is amalgamated within the Iranian culture and today's Islamic Republic of Iran. The author's aim is to present a different perspective of falsafah (as it is received by Muslims and assimilated within Iranian culture), while maintaining a sense that captures the texture of everyday life-experiences in today's Islamic Republic of Iran. This work is thus about (contemporary) Iranian falsafah and how it remains faithful to its tradition (as falsafah has actually been integrated and practiced by Iranian scholars for the last eleven centuries). It is a tradition that has taken on the task of understanding and projecting a sense of order upon the multiplicity of forms, ideas, examples, and images that have passed through Iran from East and West; it is a story that has gathered, sheltered, and introduced a style and order of Islamic Iranian (Shi'at) falsafah.