Who is Ravendi (Abu’l-Husayn Ibn al-Ravendi)?

Who is Ravendi (Abu’l-Husayn Ibn al-Ravendi)?

June 26, 2021 Off By Felso

Ravendi is a Persian Islamic scholar, philosopher and writer.

He is one of the dehri philosophers who lived in Islamic lands. Dehriyyun is the understanding of materialism in Islamic philosophy. According to his views, matter is infinite. (It is eternal) That is, it was not created out of nothing, it was not created. Everything has come into existence by itself over time. Therefore, there is no creator. Time itself is God. An individual can become a prophet by working hard.

He was born in Ravend, Iran, and died in Isfahan. His name is mentioned as Ibn Ravendi in some sources. Since he put forward thoughts contrary to Islamic beliefs, he was described as “heretic” and no information was given about his life. First, he adopted Shiite beliefs, wrote works that are a source for those who work on Shiite theology, then he developed an understanding of the atom by examining Anatolian-Greek philosophers. Ravendi, the founder of the era known as Dehriyyun (Materialism) in Islamic thought, advocated believing in the reality of matter (materialism). Ravendi, who sought solutions to all philosophical problems with a materialist method based on the principles of reason, focused on the universe, God, man, knowledge, creation, reason, death and spirit.

He was born in Rîvend village of Merverruz city of Khorasan. However, he was known as Ravendi, probably because of a false rumor that he was born in Rawand, one of the villages of Isfahan. Ibn al-Jawzi is the first of the authors to call him Riwandi (al-Muntaẓam, VI, 99). He spent the most important period of his life in Baghdad. Although he made close contact with the Mu’tazila intellectual circles when he came here, when he fell out with this circle, a fierce campaign was launched against him because of his views, some of which were of a Shiite character and some of which were considered to be atheists. Due to this campaign, in which many different currents of thought participated, it is seen that the name of Ibn al-Ravendi is almost identified with the concept of ilhad in the history of Islamic thought. Different dates are given for the death of Ibn al-Rawandi, ranging from 243 (857) to 301 (913-14) (Mas’udi, VII, 237; İbnü’l-Cevzi, VI, 99; İbn Hallikan, I, 94; Yâfiî, II, 144; Keşfü’ẓ-ẓunûn, II, 1423).

Henrik Samuel Nyberg admitted that the late dates were correct (Hayyât, introduction to the publication, pp. XXXI-XXXIV), Paul Kraus argued the opposite (Abdurrahman Bedouin, p. 146 ff.), and Georges Vajda joined Kraus. Abdulemir al-A’sem, on the other hand, seems to have accepted the early date given by Mas’ûdî (Târîḫu İbni’r-Rîvendî al-Mülḥid, p. 312). Mu’tazile scholar Ebü’l-Hüseyin al-Hayyât (d. 300/913 [?]), who lived at the same time as Ibn al-Ravendi, uses the past tense in his refutation called al-Intiṣâr, but does not give any information about his death. . It is understood that al-Intiṣâr was written after 269 (882-83), and the name of İbnü’r-Râvendî’s book Kitâbü’d-Dâmiġ, which is the subject of controversy, is not mentioned here. Accordingly, the author must have written Kitâbü’d-Dâmiġ after 269. In addition, the information that Ibn al-Rāvendi read Kitābu’l-Muḳteḍab from Müberred, who was ten years older than him, while he was in Basra, and that this work was written after 269, shows that he died after this date. It seems more likely that Ibn al-Ravendi, as pointed out by Abbasi, reached the age of eighty, so the accuracy of the date 301 (913-14) given by Katib Çelebi gains weight (Ess, XXVII [1978], p. .8-9).

In Ravendi’s system of thought, an understanding that is desired to be reconciled with ancient Iranian beliefs is seen. According to him, the source of belief is reason, and even thoughts that are contrary to reason are the product of reason. Since human reason cannot use it properly, it has been dragged into inconsistencies. Man, who is a natural being, was not created, and there is no supernatural quality in him. The beings thought to be supernatural are made up of sense data. A supernatural power cannot be found in the universe, which is identical in structure to human beings. Man is a being of reason, therefore he must be based on the principles of reason in all his actions and actions.

Reason is a natural ability that is formed and shaped in time, it is the measure of all truths and truths. An opinion that is incompatible with reason is absurd. The works of the prophets are deception as they contradict the principles of reason. The regular functioning of the mind depends on the health of the body. This shows that the mind is formed as a result of a natural development and that it is not a separate entity from the body.

Ibn al-Rawandi, who came to Baghdad at a young age, got on well with the Mu’tazila theologians here, and even gained a respectable place among them with his ability to criticize and argue. But later, the anti-Shiite sectarianism in this sect, which Câhiz made almost official with his work Fażîletü’l-Mu’tezile, played a role in his stance against the Mu’tazila. According to Josef van Ess, especially Sümama b. Eşres and Bishr b. Since Mu’temir’s presence in Caliph Me’mûn’s palace in Merv, the Mu’tazila sect began to organize in Khorasan as well. Unlike the Baghdad Mu’tazila, the Khorasan milieu probably represented a Shia-Mu’tazila alliance. Ibn al-Rawandi, on the other hand, made a name for himself as a Mu’tazila theologian in Baghdad.