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Muslim Legends

Abu Nasr Muhammad al-Farabi

Muslim Scientist

Abu Nasr Muhammad al-Farabi was an early Islamic philosopher who was crucial in bringing Plato and Aristotle’s theories to the Muslim world. Later Islamic thinkers, such as Avicenna, were greatly influenced by him.

He was a brilliant linguist who translated Aristotle’s and Plato’s Greek writings and added significant additions to them. Mallim-e-Sani, which means “second master” or “second teacher,” became his nickname.

Al-Farabi had previously completed his schooling at Farab and Bukhara. He afterward proceeded to Baghdad for higher education, where he studied and worked for several years. He learned multiple languages, as well as various disciplines of knowledge and technology, throughout this time. Farabi made significant contributions to science, philosophy, logic, sociology, medicine, mathematics, and music, among other fields. He is well known for his contributions to philosophy, logic, and sociology, for which he is known as an “Encyclopedist.”

Farabi was the first philosopher to distinguish philosophy from theology. From the Middle Ages forward, it’s uncommon to find a Muslim or Christian philosopher who hasn’t been inspired by his ideas. He believed in a Supreme Being who had created the universe using balanced wisdom. He also said that this same rational capacity is the only component of the human being that is immortal, and thus he made the development of that rational faculty the most important human objective. In comparison to any other Islamic philosopher, he paid far greater attention to political philosophy.

Farabi later laid out the traits required of a monarch in Platonic way later in his book. He argued that a ruler should be inclined to rule by virtue of a native character’s positive qualities, as well as possess the appropriate attitude for such authority. The concept of happiness, in which individuals cooperate to achieve fulfilment, is at the centre of Al-political Farabi’s theory. Following the Greek model, he assigned the highest level of happiness to his ideal sovereign, whose soul was “connected as it were with the Active Intellect.” Farabi was a great source of inspiration for Middle Ages intellectuals, and he made significant contributions to knowledge in his day, paving the way for succeeding Muslim philosophers and thinkers.

Both a Neoplatonic and an Aristotelian dimension can be found in Farabian epistemology. Farabi’s Kitab ihsa al-ulum is the finest source for his knowledge classification. This work effectively conveys Farabi’s esoteric and exoteric views. The main Aristotelian accent on the importance of knowledge goes through all of them. As a result of what has been explained, al-epistemology Farabi’s might be defined as encyclopaedic in scope and sophisticated in articulation, employing both a Neoplatonic and an Aristotelian voice.

Farabi also contributed to the publication of works on early Muslim sociology and Kitab al-Musiqa, famous literature on music (The Book of Music). Although it was marketed in the West as a book on Arab music, this book is actually a study of the theory of Persian music at the time. In addition to contributing to the knowledge of musical notes, he invented various musical instruments. He was said to be able to play his instrument so effectively that he could make people laugh or cry at will. Farabi’s treatise, Meanings of the Intellect, was about music therapy, and he talked about how music may help the soul.

Farabi has many adventures and travelled to many different places throughout his life. As a result, he produced numerous contributions for which he is still renowned. Despite numerous setbacks, he worked tirelessly and became one of history’s most well-known scientists. At the age of 80, he in Damascus in 339 A.H. /950 A.D.

The philosophical thinking of Al-Farabi was fostered by the Arabic Aristotelian teachings of Baghdad in the 10th century. His greatest contribution to Islam was to explain how the Greek heritage, as it had become known to the Arabs, might be used to address questions that Muslims were grappling with. Philosophy, according to al-Farabi, had come to an end in other areas of the world but had the potential to resurrect in Islam. However, Islam as a religion was unable to meet the needs of a philosopher.

Human reason, he believed, was superior to revelation. Nonphilosophers who were unable to comprehend reality in its purer forms were given truth in a symbolic form by religion. Most of the writings of Farabi’s were devoted to the issue of proper state organisation. He ties the political upheavals of his day to the philosopher’s divorce from the government, just as God dominates the cosmos and the philosopher, as the most ideal kind of man, should rule the state.


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