INTERPRETING AVICENNA: SCIENCE AND PHILOSOPHY IN MEDIEVAL ISLAM-PROCEEDINGS OF THE SECOND CONFERENCE OF THE AVICENNA STUDY GROUP (ISLAMIC PHILOSOPHY, THEOLOGY, AND SCIENCE)

 INTERPRETING AVICENNA SCIENCE AND PHILOSOPHY
  • Book Title:
 Interpreting Avicenna Science And Philosophy In Medieval Islam Proceedings Of The Second Conference Of The Avicenna Study Group Islamic Philosophy Theology And Science
  • Book Author:
 Jon McGinnisAvicenna
  • Total Pages
280
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 INTERPRETING AVICENNA SCIENCE AND PHILOSOPHY – Book Sample

CONTENTS –  INTERPRETING AVICENNA SCIENCE AND PHILOSOPHY

  • Note on the Transliteration of Arabic and Persian vii
  • Chapter One The Pseudo-Avicennan Corpus, I:
  • Methodological Considerations 3
  • David C Reisman (University of Illinois, Chicago)
  • AVICENNA ON NATURAL PHILOSOPHY AND THE EXACT SCIENCES
  • Chapter Two Ibn Sìnà on Chance in the Physics of al-ṣifà”
  • Catarina Belo (University of Oxford)
  • Chapter Three On the Moment of Substantial Change:
  • A Vexed Question in the History of Ideas
  • Jon McGinnis (University of Missouri, St Louis)
  • Chapter Four Intellect, Soul and Body in Ibn Sìnà: Systematic Synthesis and Development of the Aristotelian, Neoplatonic and Galenic Theories
  • Robert E Hall (Queen’s University, Belfast)
  • Chapter Five Non-Discursive Thought in Avicenna’s Commentary on the Theology of Aristotle
  • Peter Adamson (King’s College, London)
  • Chapter Six The Conception of the Angle in the Works
  • of Ibn Sìnà and a“-”ìràzì 112
  • Irina Luther (Russian Academy of Sciences)
  • AVICENNA ON THEOLOGY AND METAPHYSICS
  • Chapter Seven Avicenna’s Argument for the Existence of
  • God: Was He Really Influenced by the Mutakallimùn? 129
  • Ömer Mahir Alper (Istanbul University)
  • Chapter Eight Reconsidering Avicenna’s Position on God’s Knowledge of Particulars 142
  • Rahim Acar (Marmara University)
  • Chapter Nine The Reception of Book B (Beta) of Aristotle’s Metaphysics in the Ilàhìyàt of Avicenna’s
  • Kitàb al-Ṣifà” 157
  • Amos Bertolacci (Yale University)
  • Chapter Ten The Relation Between Form and Matter: Some Brief Observations on the ‘Homology Argument’
  • (Ilàhìyàt, II4) and the Deduction of Fluxus 175
  • THE HERITAGE OF AVICENNA
  • Chapter Eleven The Three Properties of Prophethood in
  • Certain Works of Avicenna and al-˝azàlì 189
  • M Afifi al-Akiti (University of Oxford)
  • Chapter Twelve  Resurrection (Ma’àd ) in the Persian Óayàt an-Nufùs of Ismà’ìl Ibn Mu˙ammad Rìzì: The Avicennan
  • Background 213
  • Roxanne D Marcotte (The University of Queensland) Bibliography 237
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AVICENNA ON NATURAL PHILOSOPHY AND THE EXACT SCIENCES

IBN SÌNÀ ON CHANCE IN THE PHYSICS OF Aṣ-ṢIFÀ”[01]I am grateful to Professor Yahya Michot, Jon McGinnis, Gül Russell, Christopher Melchert, Toby Mayer and Fritz Zimmermann for their suggestions and … Continue reading

Catarina Belo

Briefly defined in the Metaphysics of al-Ṣifà”, the concept of ‘chance’ (ittifàq) is analysed and duly developed by Ibn Sìnà (Lat. Avicenna) in the Physics (as-Samà’ a†-ˇabì’ì ) of as-ṣifà” in conjunction with the concept of ‘fortune’ (baht). Two chapters are dedicated to chance. Ibn Sìnà first enumerates four different views on chance by four different schools of thought, mentioned by Aristotle, and then goes on to expound his own view. In chapter fourteen, he refutes the four views in question and introduces into the debate such related issues as the concept of the accidental and the role of matter.[02] The term fortune and chance respectively reflect the Greek tÊxh and tÚ aÈtÒmaton. The expression min tilqà”i nafsihì (spontaneous), … Continue reading

The discussion is closely modeled on Aristotle’s exposition of chance in book II of the Physics: Ibn Sìnà addresses the same topics and uses the same examples as Aristotle. Like Aristotle, Ibn Sìnà con-tests the idea that the world as a whole or in its parts came about

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References / Footnotes

01I am grateful to Professor Yahya Michot, Jon McGinnis, Gül Russell, Christopher Melchert, Toby Mayer and Fritz Zimmermann for their suggestions and comments on earlier versions of this paper. I would also like to express my thanks for the comments of the participants of the Second Annual Avicenna Study Group Symposium (WOCMES), where an earlier version of this paper was presented; and St. Cross College, Oxford and the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia in Portugal that respectively made this trip and my research possible. I am solely responsible for any remaining flaws.
02 The term fortune and chance respectively reflect the Greek tÊxh and tÚ aÈtÒmaton. The expression min tilqà”i nafsihì (spontaneous), closely equivalent to tÚ aÈtÒmaton, occurs only once, at the opening of chapter thirteen. In Is˙àq ibn Óunayn’s translation, tÚ aÈtÒmaton is consistently translated as min tilqà”i nafsihì. See Aristotle, a†-ˇabì’ìyàt (1964–5). In the Metaphysics of a“-”ifà”, ittifàq is defined in the following way: “chance comes to be from these clashes (mußàdamàt), and if all matters are analyzed, they [are seen to] rest on the principles that necessitate them, which come from God most high,” (Avicenna, a“-”ifà”: al-Ilàhìyàt (1960a), 439.16–17). This definition contains in a nutshell the main elements of Ibn Sìnà’s view of chance, namely, chance is a coincidence generated by the clash of two different bodies or causal chains, which ultimately go back to God, the cause of all causes. It is important to bear in mind that ittifàq literally means “coincidence.” More on the terminology used by Ibn Sìnà later. All translations are mine unless otherwise indicated.
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