Philosophical Theology in Islam

Later Ashʿarism East and West


Volume Editors: and
Philosophical Theology in Islam studies the later history of the Ashʿarī school of theology through in-depth probings of its thought, sources, scholarly networks and contexts. Starting with a review of al-Ghazālī’s role in the emergence of post-Avicennan philosophical theology, the book offers a series of case studies on hitherto unstudied texts by the towering thinker Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī as well as specific philosophical and theological topics treated in his works. Studies furthermore shed light on the transmission and reception of later Ashʿarī doctrines in periods and regions that have so far received little scholarly attention. This book is the first exploration of the later Ashʿarī tradition across the medieval and early-modern period through a trans-regional perspective.

Contributors: Peter Adamson, Asad Q. Ahmed, Fedor Benevich, Xavier Casassas Canals, Jon Hoover, Bilal Ibrahim, Andreas Lammer, Reza Pourjavady, Harith Ramli, Ulrich Rudolph, Meryem Sebti, Delfina Serrano-Ruano, Ayman Shihadeh, Aaron Spevack, and Jan Thiele.

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Ayman Shihadeh, DPhil, is an intellectual historian of the pre-modern Islamic world. His publications include The Teleological Ethics of Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī (Brill, 2006) and Doubts on Avicenna (Brill, 2015). He is Editor-in-Chief of BSOAS and Section Editor for Philosophy and Theology on the Encyclopaedia of Islam.

Jan Thiele, Ph.D. (2012), is a scholar in Islamic intellectual history based at the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) in Madrid. He has published monographs and articles on medieval rational theology, including Theologie in der jemenitischen Zaydiyya (Brill, 2013).
“Philosophical Theology in Islam, edited by Ayman Shihadeh and Jan Thiele, is a thirteen-chapter work of robust scholarship into postclassical Ashʿarī theology that boasts papers covering the four corners of the Muslim world. […]Clearly, this volume will be a key resource for those interested in the complex theological legacy bestowed by al-Rāzī to later generations of thinkers and developments in post-classical Ashʿarī kalām right across the Muslim world.” Kayhan Ali Özaykal, in Ilahiyat Studies A Journal on Islamic and Religious Studies (2021)


Ayman Shihadeh and Jan Thiele

Post-Ghazālian Theology
What were the Lessons to be Learned from al-Ghazālī?
Ulrich Rudolph

Al-Rāzī’s Earliest Kalām Work
Eastern Ashʿarism in the Twelfth Century
Ayman Shihadeh

Le commentaire à la sūrate al-Aʿlā attribué à Avicenne
Une épître de Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī
Meryem Sebti

Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī’s Platonist Account of the Essence of Time
Peter Adamson and Andreas Lammer

The Necessary Existent (wājib al-wujūd)
From Avicenna to Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī
Fedor Benevich

Causing an Essence
Notes on the Concept of Jaʿl al-Māhiyya, from Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī to Mullā Ṣadrā
Bilal Ibrahim

Early Mamlūk Ashʿarism against Ibn Taymiyya on the Nonliteral Reinterpretation (ta‌ʾwīl) of God’s Attributes
Jon Hoover

Continuing Conversations
Late Sunni Kalām-Theology’s Ongoing Engagement with Philosophy
Aaron Spevack

Putting Criticisms against al-Ghazālī in Perspective
New Materials on the Interface between Law, Rational Theology and Mysticism in Almoravid and Almohad al-Andalus (Ibn Rushd al-Jadd and al-Qurṭubī)
Xavier Casassas Canals and Delfina Serrano-Ruano

Ashʿarism in the Ḥafṣid Era
Jan Thiele

The Legacy of ʿAḍud al-Dīn al-Ījī
His Works and His Students
Reza Pourjavady

Ashʿarism through an Akbarī Lens
The Two “Taḥqīqs” in the Curriculum Vitae of Ibrāhīm al-Kūrānī (d. 1019/1690)
Harith Ramli

The Mawāqif of ʿAḍud al-Dīn al-Ījī in India
Asad Q. Ahmed

All interested in the history of medieval and early-modern Islamic theology and philosophy, Ashʿarism, Avicenna, al-Ghazālī, Fakhr al-Dīn al-Rāzī, and the dissemination of philosophical theology from the Maghreb to South Asia.
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