Notes On ' Ibn ' Ī

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Ibn Abī Jumhūr in the Kitāb Mujlī mirʾāt al-munjī departs from the aforementioned standard view offered by Ṭūsī and Ḥillī to reconcile the philosophical doctrine of necessitation with that of the theologians. Kitāb al-Mujlī is written toward the end of the fifteenth century and discusses a wide range of philosophical, theological and Sufi themes with the intention of bringing together the views which until then were considered incompatible. This work is a three-layered commentarial text. The author first wrote the Kitāb Masālik al-afhām fī ʿilm al-Kalām, then commented upon it under the title of the Kitāb al-Nūr al-munjī min al-ẓalām, and eventually wrote an extensive commentary on the later under the title of Kitāb Mujlī mirʾāt al-munjī.…show more content…
But from Aḥsāʾī’s point of view, both of these definitions are deficient. In the first definition an existential divine wish is attached to a non-existential matter. He asks how could it be the case that an existential matter attaches itself to a non-existential matter? For the second definition, non-existence of the divine wish cannot cause something or be caused by the non-existence of something.
According to the theologians, the attribute of power means that God is capable of doing (fiʿl) and of not-doing (tark) an action. Ibn Abī Jumhūr asks theologians about the role of the proper circumstances of action, and immediately replies that some theologians believe that not only the circumstance of action must concur in order to do it, but also there must be no obstacle in the way of acting. Another group of the theologians may say that there is nothing outside the domain of God’s power. He does whatever He wishes through His attribute of power.
Aḥsāʾī’s next move is to show that both philosophers and theologians agree on God being a free agent. He asserts that the above-mentioned definition of necessitation which is attributed to the philosophers is not commonly held among the verifiers of them. Rather by necessitation they simply mean that the proper circumstances of action must be concurrent when an act proceeds from God. If these circumstances are not present, then no one can claim that it is necessary upon an agent to issue an act.
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