Neoplatonic Thinkers: Ghazali Essays

Neoplatonic Thinkers: Ghazali Essays

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In the history of concepts, there is no concern that Al-Ghazali’s figure emerges as one of the best Western thinkers. Considered as the prominent Sunni theologian that ever lived, Al-Ghazali’s polemic againstNeoplatonic thinkers, mainly Ibn Sina, dealt a fatal rage to philosophy within Islamic world. Written following his period of private study of philosophy, and completed in 1094 CE, Tahafut al-Falasifa carried the purpose of pursuing the analysis of reason that inspired his stint of cynicism, and was attempting to illustrate that reason is not self-reliant in the sphere of metaphysics and is incapable out of itself to construct an absolute world-view. Whereas, as Goldziher (1981) explains, Al-Ghazali uniquely held certain beliefs which he refuted in Tahafut, he wanted to demonstrate that reason on its own cannot establish that the world has the creator, two gods are unfeasible, God is not an entity or a body, and that he understand both himself and others, that the spirit is a self-resilient body. This paper will analyze Al-Ghazali’s argument on the eternity of the world, as found in his first areas of debate with philosophers and evaluated against Ibn Rushd’s answers.
Al-Ghazali started his first argument by stating that historically, there are three philosophical perceptions on the past eternity of the world. The most generally held point is that of maintaining (the world’s) earlier eternity: that it has never stopped to be present with God, glorified be He, being a consequence of His, to prevail along with Him, and not being subsequent to Him over time (Jackson, 2002). Another position that is related to Plato, proposed that the world was created and

begun in time. Out of these, Al-Ghazali turned his polemic toward the mos...


... middle of paper ...


...premise is indubitable. Thus, it became significant to show the truth of the premise that the world is finite and started to exist. So as to do this, Al-Ghazali utilized two important lines of attack: the first by demonstrating that the theorists had failed to show the impracticality of creation of the worldly body from an eternal being; the second that the start of the world is demonstrable.
Al-Ghazali started his verification of argument one by summarizing the claim between philosophers and theologians, and began with his over arching assertion: that it is hard for temporal to ensue from an eternal. He recorded the argument of the philosophers, which without recognizing that the universe emerged from God co-eternally, the universe would linger in the sphere of real possibility, because continuation would have had that which offers [it] predominance
(Dutton, 2001).

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