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Science and Mystical Cosmology in Ibrahim Hakki’s Marifetname
Dr. Ali Akbar Ziaee
International Institute of Islamic Thought and Civilization International Islamic University Malaysia
Science and Mystical Cosmology in Ibrahim Hakki’s Marifetname1 Dr. Ali Akbar Ziaee
The Marifetname which carried his reputation and fame to the climax in his time and in the present day deals with classical scientific subjects such as mathematics, astronomy, medicine and physics, also offers discussions on modern scientific concepts and presents certain contradictory statements on “Islamic science” and “science. Ibrahim Hakki believed that there is no contradiction between Religion (Quran and Sunnah) and sciences. Religion and science are two aspects of social life. There has been a prolonged conflict between religion and science for a long time, but, as a matter of fact, as far as their ultimate goal is concerned, there is no contradiction between the two. Both science and religion aim for the Reality, but the means of knowledge differ. Science is the attempt first, to discover, by means of observation and reasoning based upon it, particular facts about the world, and then laws connecting facts with one another and making it possible to predict future occurrences. This theoretical aspect of science is connected with the scientific methods which utilize scientific knowledge for the cause of man, due to which people, who, though not scientists, give importance to it In contrast to this the sources of religious knowledge are spiritual experiences which are firsthand, immediate and incommunicable and as such are not verifiable like scientific laws
KEYWORDS: Cosmology, Mysticism, Science, Astronomy, Ottoman Empire.
This paper is a part of research grant given by IIUM, April 2010.
Ibrahim Hakki Ibrahim Hakki of Erzurum, was born in the township of Hasankale, a district of the Erzurum city, Turkey, on May 1703AD/1115H and died in 1780AD/1193H.2 His father, Dervish3 Osman HusnÊ Bin MullÉ4 Bakr Bin Dursun Mehmed, also known as HaqÊrullÉh, was a famous Dervish in the district of Erzurum. In 1703, Dervish Osman left his hometown and settled in Erzurum. His mother is Sherife Hanife, daughter of Dede Mahmud from Kındığı village of Hasankale. He explains his birth in Marifetname5 as the following: “May it be known, Dervish effendi,6 was surprised and despondent for the deceased, and reached the year of HijrÊ 1115. He prayed ÎalÉt al-IstikhÉrah with great commitment as discretion on the first Friday of Muharram, and in his dream, he was ordered to leave all the worldly niqmah behind and dedicate his life working for akhirah. When he woke up from his sleep, he filled up with the joy of starting his journey to find the Murshid KÉmil7. And on the Friday morning, at the hour of Ðuhr8 when the sun was rising, his son was born. His was named Ibrahim Hakki. His soul and body was filled with love and joy of his son’s arrival. He found peace with the blessing of Allah from his physical and spiritual burdens and sorrows. Ibrahim Hakki, who took lessons from his father Osman Effendi, also took lessons from the local
Baghdadi, Isma’il Basha, Hadiyyah al-‘Arifin (Beirut: DAr al-Fikr, 1982), 1/39. A Dervish is someone treading a path or TarÊqah, known for their extreme poverty and austerity. Dervishes have been known as sources of wisdom, medicine, poetry, enlightenment, and witticisms. 4 MullÉ is generally used to refer to a Muslim man, educated in Islamic theology and sacred law. 5 Ibrahim Hakki, Marifetnameh, 3/1118. 6 Effendi or Efendi (Arabic: أﻓﻨﺪيAfandī; Persian: ) آﻓﻨﺪیis a nobility title meaning a lord or master. It is a title of respect or courtesy, equivalent to the English Sir, which was used in Turkey. It follows the personal name, when it is used, and is generally given to members of the learned professions and to government officials who have no higher rank, such as bey or pasha. 7 The Perfect Guide, who dedicates his life for Allah, His Love, and His course to enlighten people. 8 On Fridays, 7 am in the morning.
Íodjas9 and Sarı Gümrükçü Dervish Effendi, an old friend of his father in Erzurum. He lost his mother at the age of 7. His father Dervish Osman Effendi was deeply shattered upon his (Dervish Osman’s) father’s demise with his hour of death in Kefe10 when he joined the campaign of Azak.11 As a result, this event turned Dervish Osman’s good virtue and behavior into a bad character and manner, which deeply saddened him day by day. In order to make himself a better person and get rid of the effects of his father’s demise, he started to look and reach for Murshid KÉmil. He travelled to Erzurum city. In Erzurum, Gümrükçü Dervish effendi, whom he was acquainted some time ago, offered Dervish Osman to become master of his son. However Dervish Osman, kindly refused his offer, and met HabÊb Effendi and learned the knowledge of Islamic mysticism from him. HabÊb Effendi, appointed Dervish Osman as an imÉm to the mosque that he had had constructed in Mehdi street. One day, feeling the deep grief and sorrow of his father’s demise, Dervish Osman Effendi, met the Uzbek preacher who was visiting the LÉle PashÉ Mosque in Erzurum at that time, and he told his story, and even wanted to come along with the preacher. But the Uzbek preacher replied to him: “O, Muslim brother! We would have welcomed you among us. However, our sultan and master had chosen you beforehand. You have a great master who is the most Murshid Kamil, he is as the red sulfur. He had been yearning to meet you for six years and you are destined to meet him in two years.” Upon receiving his words as good news, he travelled to Bitlis region (1716) with his companion Sheikh Eyyub Effendi in
×odja, also spelled as Hoca, is a title of respect in some Central Asian and Middle Eastern cultures. Hodja can also refer to a folkloric character known for his sharp wit. It is often used to refer to Muslim Imams or the Muezzin. 10 Feodosiya (Ukrainian: Феодосія, Crimean Tatar Kefe, Russian: Феодосия, Armenian: Թեոդոսիա, Turkish: Kefe) is a port and resort city in Crimea, Ukraine, located on the Black Sea coast. The name is sometimes spelled as Feodosia οr Theodosia, according to transliteration from the Greek: Θεοδοσία. During much of its history the town was known as Caffa or Kaffa. 11 Azov
order to look for his Murshid Kamil. In that time, as his wife Hanife passed away, he left his son Ibrahim to his siblings. After visiting the tomb of MullÉ Mehmed Avrasi, Sheikh of Eyyub Effendi, and staying two weeks in Bitlis and Müküs12, they travelled to Siirt, towards the destination of the Ka’aba, intending to perform their Hajj. They heard about the person who was known as Sheikh Ismail in the Tillo (Aydinlar) village of Siirt from the folk of the caravan travelling from Hizan to Siirt, and they visited him. Dervish Osman, didn’t realize that Ismail FaqÊrullÉh was the Murshid Kamil that he was looking for at the beginning of their acquaintance. However, after sometime, he started to feel that his grief and deep sorrow was fading away day by day. Then he figured out that, Ismail FaqÊrullÉh was the Murshid Kamil that he had been longing for a long time, and he decided to stay with him. Ibrahim Hakki, also came to Tillo where his uncle and father used to stay when he was 9 years old, and met Ismail FaqÊrullÉh. Then he and his father stayed ten years with Ismail FaqÊrullÉh. On the tenth year of their stay, his father Osman Effendi passed away and Ismail FaqÊrullÉh took the responsibility of him. Ibrahim Hakki, going through from a spiritual education of his Sheikh during his stay with FaqÊrullÉh, collected some of his master’s wise advices in his book (Marifetname). “MullÉ Ibrahim, everything comes from Allah, and returns to Allah. MullÉ, Everything is with Allah, and for Allah. MullÉ, everything is with the power of Allah and His work. MullÉ, whoever loves Allah, also loves reciting the Quran. MullÉ, reciting the Quran is nourishment for the soul. MullÉ, reciting al-fÉtiÍa is alluring and repelling. MullÉ, whoever loves Allah, practices the Quran. MullÉ Ibrahim, whoever
A district in the city of Van.
loves Allah, also complies with His Beloved One13. MullÉ, whoever loves Allah’s Beloved One (HabÊb), also implements his Sunnah in his life. MullÉ Ibrahim, silence is an eloquent divine wisdom and a delightful character. MullÉ, silence of the tongue is a reason for silence of the heart, as silence of the heart is for the knowledge of the God. MullÉ Ibrahim, the best dhikr is “LÉ ilÉha illallah”. Repeating His name leads to love of Allah. Allah also cites (dhikr) and loves the one who only cites (dhikr) His name. The true dhikr is to forget everything other than Allah. MullÉ, putting yourself and your trust in the hands of Allah, and submitting yourself to Allah and the patience are the methods on the path of acceptance by Allah, the methods of reaching to Allah. MullÉ, patience is an inspiration from Allah, hurry is a craft from the Satan, and endurance is safety and immunity to fear. MullÉ, wisdom is by learning, and a good character is by constraining the heart towards it. Knowledge is a great degree, and a good character is a great gift to Him." On the death of his father in 1132H/1720, Ibrahim Hakki, who was educated in Islamic knowledge and mysticism, travelled to Erzurum twice between 1719 and 1735 and stayed 9 years in his first visit and continued his education. He learned Arabic and Persian from Muhammad Hazik, the famous poet and the mufti of Erzurum. He became expert in Turkish, Arabic and Persian and was able to write beautiful poetry in all three languages. In 1728, he return to Tillo in Siirt and continued the Ismail FaqÊrullÉh lectures and eventually married the daughter of AbdulqÉdir, the grandson of his master, Sheikh FaqÊrullÉh, becoming his teacher's son-in-law. He then undertook the duties of his master, such as delivering lectures and teaching when his master passed away. Sheikh
Prophet Muhammad (saw)
FaqÊrullÉh, who educated his student Ibrahim Hakki with those advices, passed away on a Friday after the second half of Shawwal in 1734AD/1147H at the age of 80. He travelled to Istanbul in 1738, then Hedjaz in 1763, and he stayed in Egypt for a while on the way back. He travelled to Istanbul in 1745 and 1754, and two more times to Hedjaz in 1763 and 1767. On returning from Hajj, he wrote his book, Lubb alQutb. This volume consists of extracts from the works of great Islamic scholars from the past. During his stay in Istanbul, he was able to use the Library of Palace with the permission of Sultan Mahmud I. He engaged in exchanges of information with famous Islamic scholars in Aleppo, Damascus, Mecca, Medina and Quds; relations he had established during his second hajj, the holy pilgrimage to Mecca. On the way back from his travels, he wrote his famous book, the Marifetname.He stayed in Erzurum between the years 1754 and 1764. Ibrahim Hakki who spent most of his life since childhood, stayed in the Tekke14 of FaqÊrullÉh from 1764 until his demise (1780). During this time, he began writing his works and remained there until he passed away. He completed his Divan, Marifetname, IrfÉniyya, IÍsÉniyya and MajmË’ah al-Ma’ÉnÊ, his first five main books, during his stay in Erzurum. His grave is located nearby the feet of his Sheikh FaqÊrullÉh. b) His Works Ibrahim Hakki who is a Sufi, thinker, sociologist, physiologist, innovator, scientist, scholar of astronomy and kalam15 is also a poet. He discussed multi-faceted matters such as mathematics, anatomy, geometry, astronomy, geography, medicine, science (principals) of etiquette, method of education in his works, and also studied many
A building designed specifically for gatherings of a Sufi brotherhood, or tarÊqa, and is a place for spiritual retreat and character reformation. In the past, and to a lesser extent nowadays, they often served as hospices for Sufi travellers (SÉlik) and Islamic students. 15 Islamic theology.
topics ranging from the roundness of earth to times of sexual intercourse and what effects the appearance of an unborn baby. The cumulative result in his works is to teach his readers how to become a perfect person in branches of the Islamic sciences. He also wrote 54 important books such as: Dīvān Iālhiyyāt ,دﯾﻮان اﻟﮭﯿﺎتMairifetnāme ,ﻣﻌﺮﻓﺘﻨﺎﻣﮫTadhkira al-AÍbāb ,ﺗﺬﻛﺮة اﻷﺣﺒﺎب HiÎn al-Ārifīn ,ﺣﺼﻦ اﻟﻌﺎرﻓﯿﻦKalemāt FaqÊrullāh ,ﻛﻠﻤﺎت ﻓﻘﯿﺮ اﷲIrfāniyyah , ﻋﺮﻓﺎﻧﯿﺔ Quwwat Jān ,ﻗﻮت ﺟﺎنMuntakhabāt ManÐūmah ,ﻣﻨﺘﺨﺒﺎت ﻣﻨﻈﻮﻣﮫRāz Nāmah ,راز ﻧﺎﻣﮫ Insān Kāmil ,اﻧﺴﺎن ﻛﺎﻣﻞRisālah Hakki dar TaÊiq NaqshbanÊi ,رﺳﺎﻟﮫ ﺣﻘﻲ در ﻃﺮﯾﻖ ﻧﻘﺸﺒﻨﺪي Ilāhi Nāmah ,اﻟﮭﻲ ﻧﺎﻣﮫIqbāl Nāmah ,اﻗﺒﺎل ﻧﺎﻣﮫA’māl Falakiyyah bi al-Rub’ al-Mujīb
,اﻷﻋﻤﺎل اﻟﻔﻠﻜﯿﺔ ﺑﺎﻟﺮﺑﻊ اﻟﻤﺠﯿﺐOlfah al-AnÉm ,اﻟﻔﺔ اﻷﻧﺎمTarÊib al-‘ulËm ,ﺗﺮﺗﯿﺐ اﻟﻌﻠﻮمJala’ alGolËb li tajalÊi al-MaÍbËb , ﺟﻼء اﻟﻘﻠﻮب ﻟﺘﺠﻠﻲ اﻟﻤﺤﺒﻮبSafinah al-NËÍ min WaridÉt alFotËÍ ,ﺳﻔﯿﻨﺔ اﻟﻨﻮح ﻣﻦ واردات اﻟﻔﺘﻮحWaÎlat NÉmah ,وﺻﻠﺖ ﻧﺎﻣﮫHay’at al-Islam ,ھﯿﺌﺔ اﻻﺳﻼم ManÉzil al-Qamar ,ﻣﻨﺎزل اﻟﻘﻤﺮIkhtiyÉr al-Qamar ,اﺧﺘﯿﺎر اﻟﻘﻤﺮUrwah al-Islam ﻋﺮوة
,اﻻﺳﻼمMakhzan al-AsrÉr ,ﻣﺨﺰن اﻷﺳﺮارMurshid al-Muta’allihÊn ,ﻣﺮﺷﺪ اﻟﻤﺘﺄھﻠﯿﻦetc.16
Science and Mystical Cosmology in Marifetname: The Marifetname17 which carried his reputation and fame to the climax in his time and in the present day deals with classical scientific subjects such as mathematics, astronomy, medicine and physics, also offers discussions on modern scientific concepts and presents certain contradictory statements on “Islamic science” and “science.” This great book was completed in 1765. The issues in this book pertaining to the ways of knowing Allah are: the verses of Quran that cites Allah and proves His
BaghdÉdÊ, Isma’Êl BÉsha, Hadiyyah al-‘ÓrifÊn, 1/39, 2/272, 406; Omar RiÌÉ KaÍÍÉla, Mo’jam alMo’allifÊn (Beirut: Dar ‘IÍyÉ’ al-Turath al-‘ArabÊ), 1/25. 17 Gazi Husrev Bek’s manuscript remained the most valuable copy of this scientific and Islamic encyclopedia in the Ottoman Empire.
existence; the states of Islamic Theology18 and the positive sciences as astronomy, earth sciences, physics, biology, mathematics, medicine, method of education that discovers the Universe whose creator is Allah and as characterology and physiology which leads the person to the very existence of Allah and His endless power. Meanwhile, when he was taking up the issues in the book, especially about the Islamic mysticism, he did not neglect to embellish it with some poetry and he presented many geometric drawings pertaining to science of astronomy. It is an interesting Islamic and scientific encyclopedia in Turkish. Ibrahim Hakki was an eighteenth-century Turkish saint and religious scholar who was an expert in anatomy, astronomy and mysticism. The author presents the fundamental theories of Islamic cosmology concerning heaven, hell, Barzakh, skies, earth, planets of our solar system, solar eclipse, lunar eclipse, seas, mountains, and the function of human organs, diseases and other medical issues as well as Islamic mysticism. The most important feature of Ottoman science of the eighteenth century was that its approach shifted from East to West under the influence of the newly established educational institutions;19 hence, Ibrahim Hakki attempts to connect Islamic science with modern science in this book. However, during this century, Hakki’s mathematics remained faithful to the classical mathematical tradition. In the preface, dedicating this book to his son Ahmed Naimi, he explained the reason why he wrote the book, after giving his endless praises (×amd )ﺣﻤﺪand (Shukr) ﺷﻜﺮ thanks to Allah as follows:
The Islamic thinking History of the Ottoman State, Society & Civilization, Edited by: Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu (Istanbul: 2002), p. 593.
“May Allah bless you with glory in DunyÉ and Akhira. First of all, may it be known that Allah announced to everyone that He created the Two Worlds20 for the mankind, and He created the mankind, so that they get to know Him better. As a matter of fact, he said, with kindness and grace: ‘I was a hidden treasure and I liked to be known, so that I created the creation (mankind)’. Therefore, the main purpose and the holy decision which is behind the creation of universe and the mankind is the knowing of God. This endless power and infinitive bliss comes before everything. However, it depends on your knowledge of yourself (Nafs) which depends on knowing of your body. The acknowledgement of your body is acquired by the knowledge of the universe. The knowledge of universe is in the Real Knowledge.21 Because of this reason, I have written and assorted this beautiful work, translating into Turkish Language, as one introduction part, three chapters and an epilogue after extracting and taking up the topics benefiting some from the science of anatomy and philosophy, and also from some information that I gathered and choose from the science of astronomy, and some from the science of heart and irfan.22 This Islamic and scientific encyclopedia consists of an introduction, three chapters and conclusion. It contains extensive information on mathematics, geography, biology, anatomy, and astronomy. In the introduction, the author presents fundamental theories of Islamic cosmology such as heaven, hell, Barzakh, skies, earth and the quality of their creation. The states and levels of being and intellects that are metaphysical and independent of astronomy were correlated with the Ptolemaic scheme as modified by
DunyÉ and Akhira. Real knowledge/science is known to accept not only the physical science which is depending on only the physical experiments which can be measured physically, but also the metaphysical science which can not be calculated but still can be known with a different dimension or point of view (like angels and devil) in evaluating the universe and the science. 22 Irfan also spelt erfan (Arabic/Persian/Urdu: )ﻋﺮﻓﺎنliterally means knowing. Sometimes it is transliterated as Erfan. It is used to refer both to Islamic mysticism as well as the attainment of direct spiritual knowledge. In the latter sense it is often translated in English as gnosis. Those with the name are sometimes referred to as having an insight into the unseen.
Ibrahim Hakki. This cosmological scheme began with the first Intellect, included nine other Intellects, each of which generated a particular heavenly sphere that possessed its own soul and ended with the Tenth Intellect, which governs the sublunary region. Since each Intellect was generated by the Intellect above it, the Divine Reality (FayÌ Muqaddas) reached all levels of existence and in fact generates those levels. It is interesting to know that during the 18th century, approximately 374 works were written by Ottomans on astronomy; of these, and 116 were in Turkish.23 Marifetname is considered an important source in Islamic astronomy. In its first chapter, he writes about the planets of our solar system, the solar eclipse, the lunar eclipse, and the seas and mountains etc. In the second chapter, he writes about anatomy and the human organism of regarding organ functions, diseases and other medical issues. He made major contributions to the development of Ottoman medicine with the book he wrote on the subject. He and other doctors such as Ö mer Şifâî (d. 1155/1742-1743), Bursalı Ali Münşî Efendi (d. 1160/1747) and Abbas Vesim Efendi (d. 1173/1759-1760), were responsible for making available to Ottoman doctors many subjects about which they had not been informed and played a role in changing the conceptual framework of Ottoman medicine.24 The third chapter, which is the longest, deals with mysticism, sayr wa sulūk (the stages of Contemplation and Action); dhikr (remembrance; Sufi chanting); tawakkul (self-confidence, trust in God); nafs mutma'innah (the peaceful self, the contented self); nafs mulhamah (inspiration towards piety and God-consciousness); nafs marÌiyyah (the Gratified Self); and nafs ammÉra (the station of Commanding the Self). He said in this chapter that the only way to obtain peace of mind and rest without going to extremes and being exposed to spiritual trouble and pain is to seek
Ibid, p.583. Ibid, p.588.
the love and pleasure of God, and then order one's life around this aim. In this chapter, the author introduced the biography of his master, Sheikh FaqirullÉh, and his father, Dervish Othman. Ibrahim Hakki finished this work in 1170H/1756. Cosmology or the study of cosmos is closely related to the philosophy. The philosophy itself is related to the principle of religion because the immutable revealed principle emerges and manifests itself everywhere as well as in the cosmos. The Islamic cosmology integrate the diverse phenomena of nature into the realm of revelation.25
Fol. 50-Marifetnameh- Gazi Husrev Bek Library-Bosnia
According to Ibrahim Hakki, at the top of the hierarchy of beings is the Divine Being or the creator. From this emanates a second being which is the First Intellect. This being is an immaterial substance. The nine intellects emanate from the First Intellect. The First Intellect comprehends God and, in consequence of that comprehension, produces a third being, which is the Second Intellect. The First Intellect also comprehends its own essence, and the result of this comprehension is the production of the body and soul of al-samÉ' al-ËlÉ, the First Heaven. Each of the following emanated intellects are associated with the generation of similar astral phenomena, including the fixed stars, Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, the Sun, Venus, Mercury and the
Seyyed Hossein Nasr, An Introduction to Islamic Cosmological Doctrines, (GB: Thames and Hudson, 1978), pp.1-2.
Moon. Of particular significance in the emanationist hierarchy is the Tenth Intellect: it is this intellect which constitutes the real bridge between the heavenly and terrestrial worlds. This Tenth Intellect (variously called by the philosophers the active or agent intellect in English, the nous poiétikos in Greek, the dator formarum in Latin and the 'aql al-fa'Él in Arabic) was responsible both for actualizing the potentiality for thought in man's intellect and emanating form to man and the sublunary world. With regard to the latter activity, it has been pointed out that here the active intellect takes on the role of Plotinus' Universal Soul.26 Science and Religion: The opposition towards the integration of religion and Pure sciences became a big challenges in the Era of Late Ottoman Empire. Ibrahim Hakki who was educated in the madrasah and taught Islamic mysticism, surprised many scholars in his era. This is because he performed great success in Islamic Ideology, poetry, anatomy, physiology, astronomy, characterology, climatology and psychology. He lived his life in the square of four cities only which are the cities of Tillo, Hasankale, Erzurum and Istanbul (where he had been only two twice) in the era where people were not able to think contrary to the worn ideas of the time and far behind the advancement of the West. Ibrahim Hakki reached such success as he was able to think as a scientist, without the dogmatic influence of his environment. Whereby many secular scientists prolonged their frowning upon religion, regarding Ibrahim Hakki who is a religious scholar as well as a scientist, as a secularist.27 However, The Allah, who created the
Netton, I.R. (1989) Allah Transcendent: Studies in the Structure and Semiotics of Islamic Philosophy, Theology and Cosmology,(London and New York: Routledge), pp 99-148. 27 Secularist: the concept that government or other entities should exist separately from religion and/or religious beliefs.
rules of the religion and the “laws of nature” so called by the rationalists;28 who put the universe in an order, creating the earth, the sky and the substances within, according to a systematic harmony and who is arranging their movements is the same Allah. God created and gave the universe to the utilization of the mankind. Ibrahim Hakki was learning all branches of sciences in mosques and madrasah. A religious institution in Islam means the mosque and a religious school. As far as Islam is concerned, its basic source of knowledge is the Holy Qur'an, which forms its creed. This is illustrated by the Sunnah. After Ibrahim Hakki describes some elementary roles of geometry, he points to this verse:
ﻗﺎل اﷲ ﻋ ّ و ﺟ ّ: "أوَﻟﻢْ ﯾَﻨ ُ ُواْ ﻓِﻲ ﻣَﻠ ُﻮتِ اﻟﺴﻤَﺎوَاتِ وَا َرْضِ وﻣَﺎ ﺧَﻠَﻖَ اﻟﱠ ُ ﻣِﻦ ﻠﮫ َ ﻷ ﱠ َﻜ َ ﻈﺮ ﻞ ﺰ ،ﺷَﻲْءٍ وَأَنْ ﻋﺴَﻰ أَن ﯾ ُﻮنَ ﻗَﺪِ اﻗْﺘ َبَ أﺟَُﮭﻢْ ﻓَﺒِﺄَ ﱢ ﺣَﺪِﯾﺚٍ ﺑﻌﺪَ ُ ُﺆﻣِ ُﻮنَ"، )اﻷﻋﺮاف َْ ه ﯾْ ﻨ َﺮ َ ﻠ ُ ي َﻜ َ .(185
“Do they not look in the dominion of the heavens and the earth and all things that Allah has created, and that it may be that the end of their lives is near. In what message after this will they then believe?" and he considered that verse as a reason to write about the structure of the universe, because it will assist our great desire to know God better. Ibrahim Hakki believed that there is no contradiction between Religion (Quran and Sunnah) and sciences. Religion and science are two aspects of social life. There has been a prolonged conflict between religion and science for a long time, But, as a matter of fact, as far as their ultimate goal is concerned, there is no contradiction between the two. Both science and religion aim for the Reality, but the means of knowledge differ. Science is the attempt first, to discover, by means of observation and reasoning based upon it, particular facts about the world, and then laws connecting facts with one another and making it possible to predict future
In epistemology and in its modern sense, rationalism is "any view appealing to reason as a source of knowledge or justification".
occurrences. This theoretical aspect of science is connected with the scientific methods which utilize scientific knowledge for the cause of man, due to which people, who, though not scientists, give importance to it In contrast to this the sources of religious knowledge are spiritual experiences which are firsthand, immediate and incommunicable and as such are not verifiable like scientific laws.29 On the contrary to the ideas that religion is opposing to the usage of intelligence and thought on the way of discovering the great wisdom behind the existence of everything and the secrets of the Universe; the religion orders humankind to think and use their intelligence in order to discover the secrets of the unknown and to discover the knowledge of the Creator of the universe by looking at and thinking of His work and every single thing created. We hope that the verses of Quran that are ending with warnings such as; “Perhaps you will understand.”, “It is hoped that you might give thought”, will lead the people who so-calls themselves to be rationalist, to Allah who created the Universe and the brain and to His wonderful religion. As a result, hopefully these people will realize the truth that the religion and the pure sciences are not in a conflict with each other; on the contrary they come from the same divine source. Ibrahim Hakki states the following: "Knowledge of science and astronomy and machinery and factories is based on experiments and intellectual activity. Therefore, by the passage of time new information proves that the old information was wrong. Old or new, wrong or right all scientific knowledge points out that the Universe was created out of nothing and that it is a necessity to believe in a Creator who has infinite knowledge and power."
Majid Ali Khan, Islam on Origin and Evolution of Life, (Delhi: Idarah-I Adabiyat-I Delli, 2009), pp.4-5.
If some laws of science are absolutely true today, it is possible these may change, say, in the next decade. But the laws of a universal and true religion are unchangeable, absolutely and most absolutely true, right and sure without any doubt.30 As Ibrahim Hakki describes above, sciences are the most important sources, which have changed our world and made it so different from that it was. He means that science demands induction from facts and not deduction from dogmas, it insists on the reign of law. Despite of the fact that he mentioned about the utility of sciences and the role of causality and inductive reasoning, yet when they are not able to reconcile and understand completely a certain thing, they put forward theories. This means that there are facts whose laws we have not yet been able to discover and as such further work of exploration is necessary.31 The shift in science from deductive to inductive reasoning was prompted by the various writings of Francis Bacon, and perhaps more forcefully by the results obtained by Galileo32 and Newton.33 The same basic approach used then is still followed today in most research. The reliability of scientific results we have come to expect is due to the inductive approach. When studying a part of Nature the observer does so with a certain set of loose preconceived ideas, a certain amount of background knowledge that he/she uses to make sense of the observations. This is often called a paradigm. This background knowledge can range from the very basic to the complex. Using this background knowledge, the observer attempts an explanation of the phenomena and produces a hypothesis. It is important to note that
Majid Ali Khan, p. 6. Ibid, p. 27. 32 Galileo Galilei (1564-1642), was born near Pisa, Italy on the day of Michelangelo's death; died near Florence, Italy. See: Jose Wudka, p. 109. 33 Isaac Newton (born Jan. 4, 1643, Woolsthorpe, Lincolnshire, Eng. died March 31, 1727, London) English physicist and mathematician. Newton is regarded as one of the greatest scientists of all time. See: ibid, pp.125-126.
this hypothesis, though created within the context of a certain body of knowledge, need not agree with that knowledge. Thus Einstein34 studied the properties of light using Newton's ideas of motion, but the hypotheses that flourished into the Special Theory of Relativity disagreed with Newton's basic assumptions about space and time, which were almost universally accepted as providing the basic description of the workings of Nature; Harvey35 obtained his revolutionary description of blood circulation only after careful anatomical observations motivated by Galen's ideas,36 etc. Scientific theories have a limited applicability. When accurate measurements of Mercury's orbit showed a small deviation from Newton's predictions, several hypotheses were proposed to explain these observations. These included the possibility of the Sun being not quite spherical, being surrounded by a tenuous gas cloud, etc. All such attempts were unsuccessful. Finally, in 1916 Einstein showed that the General Theory of Relativity accurately predicts planetary motion, including that of Mercury. The range of applicability of Newton's theory was shown to be inadequate for sufficiently large gravitational forces and high experimental precision.37 Ibrahim Hakki was not a secular scientist. He knew all about the limitations of ancient sciences and modern sciences. He says, “Thought mathematicians and geometrician, have explained and acknowledged the distances of planets and starts and sizes of objects in details after calculations and comparisons, however, after confessing and
Albert Einstein (14 March 1879 – 18 April 1955) was a theoretical physicist, philosopher and author who is widely regarded as one of the most influential and best known scientists and intellectuals of all time. He is often regarded as the father of modern physics. 35 William Harvey is famous for having accurately described how blood circulates around the body and the part the heart plays in this. 36 Aelius Galenus or Claudius Galenus (September AD 129 – 199/217; Greek), better known as Galen of Pergamum (modern-day Bergama, Turkey), was a prominent Roman physician and philosopher of Greek origin and probably the most accomplished medical researcher of the Roman period. 37 Jose Wudka, Space-Time, Relativity, and Cosmology, (Cambridge University Press, 2006), pp.6, 1011.
repeating their inability and failure of calculating and comparing the enormous size, wideness and length of the Great Universe; and the distance between the centre of the universe and its curve point; they said that it can be only known by God. As mathematicians and geometricians, were able to observe and measure the other universes, constant stars and planets by devices, it was appropriate to mention these things in this section. So that, it will be an easiness for people who are able to think, in order to know God, to think about His work of art and secrets of His wisdom, to observe his magnificence and power, which is already our goal, that they will see and know well all of it in the structure of their body. In fact, it looks very impossible and unlikely to calculate and appreciate the universe and the starts for people who are unaware of calculations of algebra. However, these calculations are the rules of ration which are structured according to the rules of accurate sciences that is in fact real and constant.”38 For understanding Ibrahim Hakki’s position to sciences it is better to refer to his comments on Ghazali’s view of science and philosophy. He says in Marifetname: “The matter of fact, the rules of this science had been founded upon those principals. The alternate way is impossible. If this philosophic view thought to be against the sharÊ’ah: the translation of Arabic statements which are written in the TahÉfut alFalÉsifah, of Imam Muhammad Ghazali, who is our endless source of wisdom, in order to satisfy the hearts and not to worry. Imam says, “May it be known, the dispute between the philosophers and the people are in three chapters: In the first chapter, the disputes are made according to the abstract statements. For instance: the philosophers, they call the creator of the universe as “the essence”, then explained it as free from location and as a being which is self
Ibrahim Hakki, ibid.
existing. The disputes in the second chapter are on issues which are not related to any principal with regards to religion. So to dispute with them does not require the necessity of accepting the Prophet.
Fol. 88- Marifetname, Gazi Husraw Bek Library-Sarajevo
Therefore, accepting those kinds of things does not require contradicting them or otherwise. For example: the lunar eclipse happens as a result of disappearance of moon’s light by earth’s movement in between the moon and the sun. In fact, the moon gets the light from the sun. The earth is a sphere and the sky surrounds it from every direction. Whenever the moon gets into the shadow of earth, the sunlight is blocked from reaching the moon, as they say. The meaning of solar eclipse is: moon’s coming in between the man who is looking at the sun on earth and the sun which makes shadow on earth. These occasions happen at the moment moon and the sun are placed on one line, as they say. It is not even possible to change these points of views of philosophers by dispute. In that case, if a person presumes that it is necessary to disproof those views because of religious reasons, that person harms the religion great deal. In fact, those events happen according to the geometrical and mathematical proofs. Even though a person who knows, is able to verify, gives information regarding its reason, schedule, time and amount regarding these events, is told: “This is against sharÊ’ah”, that person never have doubts about what he knows precisely, that maybe he doubts about the sharÊ’ah; start to have second thoughts, saying: “how can sharÊ’ah be against the real
knowledge?” As a result, the harm to the sharÊ’ah, which is given by the people without knowledge, is far greater than by the people with knowledge. As a fact, they say: “wise enemy is better than stupid friend.” Following this, Ghazali, after mentioning the hadÊth regarding the lunar and solar eclipses: “as it is stated at the end of the hadÊth: “Lunar eclipse is a respect as a sign of divine manifestation” and he stated that; it is not accurate (ÎaÍÊÍ) to convey this part of the hadÊth. Its harmless\better not to insist on (misinterpretation of) usage of these type of hadÊth in especially (scientifically) explicit\certain matters. The obvious proofs\evidences had been misinterpreted\explained in the matters which are not certain. Let alone the ones which are not accurate or ÎaÍÊÍ. The issue which is being discussed between the philosophers and Islamic scholars is: whether the universe pre-existed or not. As long as the fact that the universe isn’t preexisted is accepted\fixed, there is no harm to the religion in discussing whether it is shape is round or flat; the planets and other components of the universe consist from 13 levels or more or less, as they can be discovered. No matter how the universe is believed to be, the most important thing here is, the fact that it came into existence by the power of Allah. In the third chapter, the dispute or discussion is related to one of the principles of religion: the post creation of universe, the Attributes of Allah and the recreation of corpses (demised). It is compulsory to discuss with them and to proof them wrong by all means. For example: they say: “the universe is not post-created (the universe is self existed\timeless\eternal), it will last eternally. As a matter of fact, it depends on eternal (forever) and what depends on eternal is forever.” We say, disproving these statements: the universe is post-created (not self existed\eternal), it is not self created,
because it is altering. Whatever is objected to change\alternation is postexisted\created. The words of Ghazali had been written here. So that people who are religious would not choose the way of denial, as they might tent to assume that it is normal to deny (religiously) the facts which might be looking extraordinary to them. Ibrahim Hakki gives a clear vision of philosopher’s view of the high objects, universes, and starts. According to the old philosophers, all these objects are simple: It is neither light or hot, or cold, or wet, or dry; they are neither able to burn or stick; they are quite pure and graceful. In the matter of fact, Allah ordered: “Assuredly the creation of the heavens and the earth is a greater (matter) than the creation of men: Yet most men understand not.”
ﻗﺎل اﷲ ﺗﻌﺎﻟﻰ: "ﻟﺨَﻠْ ُ اﻟﺴﻤَﺎوَاتِ وَا َرضِ أﻛْﺒ ُ ﻣِﻦْ ﺧَﻠْﻖِ اﻟ ﱠﺎسِ وَﻟﻜ ﱠ أﻛْﺜﺮَ اﻟ ﱠﺎسِ ﻻ َ ِﻦ َ َ ﻨ ﻨ ﻷ ْ َ َﺮ َ ﻖ ﱠ .(57 ،ﯾﻌْﻠ ُﻮنَ" )ﻏﺎﻓﺮ َ َﻤ
Almighty Allah who has power and glory is free from everything. Allah, who created the whole universe solely and uniquely, who created the uniquely movements of the planets, day and night to follow each other is exempt from anything. “Our Lord! not for naught Hast Thou created (all) this! Glory to Thee! Give us salvation from the penalty of the Fire.”
ﻗﺎل اﷲ ﺗﻌﺎﻟﻰ: "اﱠﺬِﯾﻦَ َﺬﻛ ُونَ اﻟﱠﮫ ﻗِﯿَﺎﻣًﺎ وَﻗ ُﻮدًا وَﻋَﻠَﻰ ُ ُﻮﺑﮭﻢ وَﯾَﺘَﻔ ﱠ ُونَ ﻓِﻲ ﺧَﻠْﻖ ِ َ ﺟﻨ ِ ِ ْ َﻜﺮ ُﻌ َﻠ ﻟ ﯾ ْ ُﺮ اﻟﺴﻤَﺎوَات وَا َرْض رَ ﱠ َﺎ َﺎ ﺧَﻠَﻘﺖَ َﺬَا ﺑَﺎ ِﻼ ُﺒﺤَﺎ َﻚ ﻓَﻘِﻨَﺎ َﺬَابَ اﻟ ﱠﺎرِ"، )آل ﻨ ﻋ َ ِ ﻷ ِ ﺑﻨ ﻣ ْ ھ ﻃ ً ﺳ ْ ﻧ ﱠ .(191 ،ﻋﻤﺮان
May you make us your slaves who think the creation of skies and earth, change of day and night! Evolution: Ibrahim Hakki also mentioned about “The Theory of Evolution” in his Marifetname, giving the views of Muslim Scholars. The secular scientist, who read those statements
in his book, alleges that Ibrahim Hakki was a supporter of the Theory of Evolution long before Darwin.39 They are pleased in their inner worlds that they think to have found support from a Muslim scholar in their opposition to the historical acknowledgement of the Religion which illustrates the mankind was created from the earth. However, only heaven knows why, they tend to overlook below the lines which comes after the explanation of the Theory of Evolution: “The divine light (NËr) and the endless prosperity over-flowingly descends from the level of highness, over the wisdom, and over the Nafs and then over the skies. This descending is called “the beginning” and the “arched descending”. Then this divine light ascends (rises) from the earth to the minerals, to the plants, to the animals, and to the perfect human (insÉn kÉmil) and even to Allah. Finally it (nËr) returns back where it came from, completing a circle. It is the divine light, that returns back to where it came from with a circular move after coming out of its starting point and diverse evolutions. The coming out of its origin is called qaws-i rujË’ (arched return).”40 According to him, the presence of God in creation from the First Intellect to the archangelic, psychic and physical realm constitute the cosmogonic arc of descent (alqaws al-nuzËlÊ) and man’s conscious and active participation in the divine knowledge through his return (rujË’) journey to God by ascending through the various levels of being within himself, represents the arc of ascent (al-qaws al-Øu’ËdÊ).41 In Hakki’s cosmology, the universe is found once again, in a complete but miniature model, in man considered as the microcosm.
Charles Robert Darwin (12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882) was an English naturalist who established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestors, and proposed the scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection. He published his theory with compelling evidence for evolution in his 1859 book On the Origin of Species. 40 Ibrahim Hakki, pp. 91-117. 41 For more information about the two arcs see: Zailan Moris, Revelation, Intellectual Intuition and Reason in the Philosophy of MullÉ Øadra: An Analysis of the al-hikmah al-'arshiyyah, (US:Routledge, 2003), p. 59; Nasr, p. 102-104.
The evolution stated here is not the kind of evolution which Darwin has alleged i.e. that the ancestor of mankind is monkey (mankind comes from monkey).
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