Illuminationist Texts and Textual Studies

Essays in Memory of Hossein Ziai


The late Professor Hossein Ziai’s interests focused on the Illuminationist (Ishrāqī) tradition. Dedicated to his memory, this volume deals with the post-Avicennan philosophical tradition in Iran, and in particular the Illuminationist school and later philosophers, such as those associated with the School of Isfahan, who were fundamentally influenced by it. The focus of various chapters is on translations, editions, and close expositions of rationalist works in areas such as epistemology, logic and metaphysics rather than mysticism more generally, and also on specific texts rather than themes or studies of individual philosophers. The purpose of the volume is to introduce new texts into the modern canon of Islamic and Iranian philosophy. Various texts in this volume have not been previously translated nor have they been the subject of significant Western scholarship.

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Ali Gheissari D. Phil. University of Oxford, is Professor of History at the University of San Diego with research interest in the intellectual history of modern Iran. He has written extensively in Persian and English on modern Iranian history and on modern philosophy and social theory. His publications include Iranian Intellectuals in the Twentieth Century 1998; reissued, 2008; Persian translation of Immanuel Kant’s Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Ethics with Hamid Enayat, 1991; new edition with revisions, 2015, amongst numerous other books and articles. Ali Gheissari is also Editor-in-Chief of the journal Iranian Studies.

John Walbridge, Ph.D. Harvard, is Professor of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures and Adjunct Professor of Philosophy and of History and Philosophy of Science at Indiana University Bloomington. His academic specialty is post-classical Islamic philosophy, particularly the Illuminationist school, though he has also published on Islamic science and medicine and Islamic studies more generally. He is the author, co-author, or translator of nine books, including three monographs on Suhrawardī and the Illuminationist school.

Ahmed Alwishah, Ph.D University of California, Los Angeles, is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Pitzer College, Claremont Colleges and a life member of Clare Hall College at Cambridge University. His research focuses on Islamic philosophy and philosophy of language in Islamic tradition. He is the co-editor of Aristotle and the Arabic Tradition, 2015, and Ibn Kammūna Refinement and Commentary of Suhrawardī’s Intimations, 2002 amongst other publications.

Eiyad S. al-Kutubi, Ahmed Alwishah, Charles Butterworth, Khaled El-Rouayheb, Ali Gheissari, Malihe Karbassian, Mohammad Karimi Zanjani Asl, Christian Lange, Y. Tzvi Langermann, Jon McGinnis, Nasrollah Pourjavady, Reza Pourjavady, L.W. Cornelis van Lit, John Walbridge

"This volume delivers what the editors promise at the outset: to introduce “new texts into the modern canon of Islamic and Iranian philosophy” (p. ix). It puts together scholarly editions of many texts which have not been available to Western readers, along with highly engaging introductions, helpful notes, and detailed bibliographies. For this, the editors and contributors deserve our gratitude." - Rasoul Namazi in Iranian Studies (2020)
Note on Contributors
I. Introduction

1. Ali Gheissari, “Hossein Ziai, Professor of Philosophy and Iranian Studies: A Bio Bibliographical Introduction”
2. John Walbridge, “Hossein Ziai and Suhrawardī Studies”

II. Suhrawardī and the Philosophy of Illumination

3. John Walbridge, “Illuminationist Manuscripts: Rediscovery and Reception of Suhrawardī”
4. Mohammad Karimi Zanjani Asl, “Some Observations on the Kashf al-Ghitā’ li Ikhwān al-Safā.” Translation of Kashf al-Ghiṭā’ by John Walbridge
5. John Walbridge, “Suhrawardī’s Creed of the Sages
6. Malihe Karbassian, “The Meaning and Etymology of Barzakh in Illuminationist Philosophy”
7. Nasrollah Pourjavady, “Concept of Sakina in Suhrawardī”

III. The Illuminationists or Suhrawardī’s Commentators

8. Ahmed Alwishah, “Suhrawardī and Ibn Kammūna on the Impossibility of Having Two Necessary Existents”
9. Y. Tzvi Langermann, “Ithbāt al-Mabda’ by Saʿd ibn Manṣūr ibn Kammūna: A Philosophically Oriented Monotheistic Ethic”
10. L.W.Cornelis van Lit and Christian Lange, “Constructing a World of Its Own: A Translation of the Chapter on the World of Image from Shahrazurīi’s Rasā’il al-Shajarah al-Ilāhīiyya”
11. Reza Pourjavady, “Shihāb al-Dīn Suhrawardī’s “Postscript” to His Tablets of ʿImād al-Dīn and Najm Dīn Nayrīzī’s Commentary on It”

IV. The Wider Tradition

12. Khaled El-Rouayheb, “Takmīil al-Mantiq: A Sixteenth Century Arabic Manual on Logic”
13. Charles Butterworth, Fārābī’s Purposes of Aristotle’s Metaphysics and Avicenna’s ‘Eastern’ Philosophy”
14. Jon McGinnis, “Mind the Gap: The Reception of Avicenna’s New Argument against Actually Infinite Space”
15. Eiyad S. al-Kutubi, “Translation of Mullā Sadrā’s The Traveler’s Provision (Zād al-Musāfier)”

All those interested in Islamic and Iranian intellectual history and philosophy and those working in the field of comparative philosophy. In addition to those scholars interested in Suhrawardī studies with particular reference to metaphysics, logic, and epistemology.
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