Ibn Rushd and Aristotle PhilosophyJune 27, 2021
Logic and epistemology Ibn Rushd is a staunch follower of Aristotle in logic. According to him, logic is a means of ascending from the knowledge of sensible particular beings to abstract truths.
There is a tendency and desire (enthusiasm) in man to rise from simple sensations and imaginary products to rational realities gradually. Although we are not given the knowledge of absolute truth, it is more pleasing that we are given the will and effort to reach it. This idea will later be repeated, in approximate terms, by the German thinker Lessing.
The knowing element of man is his soul called “nafs”. Animals acquire knowledge through senses and imagination, while humans acquire knowledge through reason. Thus, knowledge is gained either by the senses or by the mind; With the first of these, particular information is reached, and with the second, universal information is reached. According to Ibn Rushd, real knowledge is universal. Senses and imagination are mechanisms of the instinct of protection in animals, and animals use senses and dreams to defend themselves and ensure their safety; this is sufficient for their purpose. As for you, because he has a higher faculty of mind, he has the opportunity to reflect on his sensations and dreams. For this reason, the human soul is called “the thinking soul”.
Ibn Rushd warns that human knowledge should not be confused with divine knowledge. “For, he says, man perceives particular objects with the senses, and universal objects with the mind. For this reason, as the perceived thing changes, human perceptions (hence his knowledge) also change accordingly, and the multiplicity of objects means the multiplicity of perceptions. But God’s knowledge is not like ours. Because “our knowledge is formed by the effect of existing things; The knowledge of God, on the other hand, is not affected by them, as it is the cause of beings, on the contrary, it remains active. For the same reason, God’s knowledge is eternal, our knowledge is finite.
The action of the mind consists of perceiving universal concepts and essences. His act of knowing has three stages: abstraction (isolation), combination (composition), and splitting into judgment (judgment). When we perceive an object of knowledge, we isolate it from matter; then we combine it with our other perceptions; Finally, we make a right or wrong judgment about the object or event.
Although Ibn Rushd rightly stated that the theory of “birth” (water), which Farabi and Ibn Sina took from neoplatonist philosophy and attributed to Aristotle, had nothing to do with Aristotle, and thus corrected a very important historical mistake. He also believes in the celestial being called “Active (active) Intellect” and thought to be Gabriel by Islamic philosophers. According to this understanding, the function of our theoretical mind is to connect (push) with this mind. As a person develops mentally throughout his life, his relationship with the Active Mind becomes stronger. However, a mystical conclusion should not be drawn from this view of Ibn Rushd. Because in him, the connection with the Active Mind is the functioning and progress of the human mind in an epistemological field; Contrary to what is thought in Sufism, the human mind is constantly active in the act of knowledge; that is, he is not given information, on the contrary, he receives that information.
Ibn Rushd, stronger and more determined than all Islamic thinkers, believes that the real existence of people is related to the development of their scientific level. In particular, Gazali’s counter-criticism of Philosophers’ Inconsistencies, (Tehâfütü’l-Felâsife), in his book Inconsistency of Inconsistency, “denies the existence of fundamental causes observed in sensible objects”, opposing Gazali’s view that rejects the necessity of natural laws. is fallacy; The person who denies these (Ghazali) is either denying what he has in mind with his tongue (he wants to say that Ghazali is acting hypocritically) or he is caught in a suspicion that is nothing but a fallacy.”
However, it should be noted that while Ghazali argued that the laws of nature were not necessary, he did not really want to deny them; he only said that the necessity of these laws did not arise from cause and effect, but from the will of God. Nevertheless, Ibn Rushd’s thought is of great importance in terms of emphasizing trust in science. Clearly, mental understanding is nothing but perceiving facts and objects with their causes, and with this function, reason separates itself from other perception abilities. Then, whoever denies causes, denies reason”, he was expressing the universal principle and fundamental basis of science.
However, in the face of al-Ghazali’s mystical charisma, which led to his misinterpretation, such rational and scholarly explanations of Ibn Rushd did not find an echo at the eastern end of the Mediterranean. However, these thoughts, mostly through Jewish translators, shed an intense light on those who pioneered the establishment of a new world based on reason and science by being institutionalized under the name of «Averroisme» (Averroisme) in the west of the Mediterranean, beyond the Pyrenees. As a matter of fact, in the XVIII. In the 19th century, 15 of Ibn Rushd’s 38 books had been translated from Arabic to Latin. against this