Miskawayh, Ahmad ibn Muhammad

Miskawayh, Ahmad ibn Muhammad
   Philosopher, historian, physician, chemist and librarian, the Persian-born Miskawayh was one of the most learned and cultured courtiers of the cosmopolitan Buyid dynasty. Like many of the great Islamic humanists of his age, Miskawayh’s forte lay not in his metaphysical speculations (a somewhat unsystematic mélange of Aristotelian, Neoplatonic and Islamic ideas), but rather in his engagement with the imminently practical question of how to live a good life and achieve happiness (sa‘ada). His principal work, The Refinement of Character (Tahdhib al-akhlaq), artfully blends a Platonic conception of the soul (as immortal, ontologically distinct and separable from the body) with Aristotelian virtue ethics (casting virtue as a ‘mean’ between two vicious extremes) and Cynic-Stoic therapies for irrational passions (in order to restore and preserve the ‘health’ of the soul), as well as the Arabic adab tradition (focusing on the education and cultivation of wellmannered and urbane individuals). The single thread that winds its way through this generous synthesis is a commitment to human reason; indeed Miskawayh conceives of virtue itself as the perfection of the rational aspect of our soul, which is what makes us uniquely human. The tone of the book is practical rather than theoretical. Miskawayh discusses various traditional Greek and Arabic virtues, but focuses in particular on justice, love and friendship. He thus makes much of the fact that we are necessary to each other’s perfection, even if the highest form of happiness ultimately transcends such social requirements (and indeed, physical conditions altogether), culminating in proximity to the divine, which he describes as ‘God’s friendship and love’. In keeping with Miskawayh’s humanistic orientation, Islam (and religion as such) is recognized as important, practically useful and essentially reasonable, but is relegated to an instrumental role in the pursuit of human virtue and happiness. The Refinement of Character has remained an important didactic text in the Islamic philosophical tradition, as much for its serene, elegant, rigorous, yet popularly accessible style as for its learned and tolerant synthesis of moral insights. Its lasting influence can be seen in the ethical thought of al-Ghazali, al-Tusi, al- Dawani and Muhammad ‘Abduh, among others.
   See adab; ethics; humanism; Ibn ‘Adi
   Further reading: Fakhry 1991; Goodman 2003; Kraemer 1986a/93, 1986b; Miskawayh 1968/2002

Islamic Philosophy. . 2007.

Игры ⚽ Нужна курсовая?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ibn Miskawayh — Infobox Muslim scholars | notability = Muslim scholar| era = Islamic golden age| color = #cef2e0 | | image caption = | | name = Ahmad Ibn Muhammad Miskawayh Razi| title= Ibn Miskawayh| birth = 932CE| death = 1030CE| Maddhab = | school tradition=… …   Wikipedia

  • Ibn Miskawayh — ▪ Islamic scholar in full Abū ʿAlī Aḥmad ibn Muḥammad ibn Yaʿqūb Ibn Miskawayh born c. 930 died 1030, Rayy, Iran       Persian scientist, philosopher, and historian whose scholarly works became models for later generations of Islamic thinkers.… …   Universalium

  • Muhammad ibn Zakariya al-Razi — Al Razi redirects here. For the Islamic theologian and philosopher, see Fakhr al Din al Razi. For other uses, see Razi (disambiguation). Muhammad ibn Zakariyā Rāzī Razi was the preeminent pharmacist and physician of his time. Full name Muhammad… …   Wikipedia

  • Ahmad Sirhindi — Imām Rabbānī Shaykh Ahmad al Farūqī al Sirhindī Full name Imām Rabbānī Shaykh Ahmad al Farūqī al Sirhindī Born 30 Nov 1561 Died 1624 (Lived 63 years) Era Mughal era Region Islamic philosopher/scholar …   Wikipedia

  • Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari — For other individuals bearing the same name, see Tabari (name). Muhammad ibn Jarir al Tabari Bal ami s 14th century Persian version of Universal History by Tabari Full name Muhammad ibn Jarir al Tabari …   Wikipedia

  • Ibn al-Nadim — Abu l Faraj Muhammad bin Is hāq al Nadim (Arabic: ابو الفرج محمد بن إسحاق النديم‎), whose father was known as al Warrāq (الورّاق) (died September 17, 995 or 998) was a Shia Muslim scholar and bibliographer. Some scholars regard him as a Persian,… …   Wikipedia

  • Muhammed ibn Umail al-Tamimi — Ibn Umayl, Muhammed ibn Umail at Tamîmî (Arabic: أبو عبد الله محمد بن أميل التميمي ) was an alchemist of the tenth century. He can be dated to 900–960 (286 348) on the basis of the names of acquaintances he mentioned[1]. Whether or not Ibn Umayl… …   Wikipedia

  • Ebn Meskavayh — Persian scholar Ahmad Ibn Muhammad Miskawayh Razi Title Ibn Miskawayh Born 932CE Died 1030CE Ethnicity Persian Region …   Wikipedia

  • List of philosophy topics (I-Q) — II and thou I Ching I Ching I proposition I Thou I Thou relationshipIaIamblichus (philosopher)IbYahya Ibn Adi Yahya Ibn Adi Ibn al Arabi Muhyi al Din Ibn al Arabi Abu Bakr Ibn Bajja Abu Bakr Ibn Bājja Abu Bakr Muhammad Ibn Yahya Ibn as Say igh… …   Wikipedia

  • Averroes — Ibn Rušd (ابن رشد) Averroes Statue of Averroes in Cordoba Full name ʾAbū l Walīd Muḥammad ibn ʾAḥmad ibn Rušd …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”