What did Plato and Aristotle Have to Say Anyway?

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I don’t know that much about the teachings and studies of Plato and Aristotle but I’m keen to learn more…

Basically, I’m impressed at ancient scholars who seemed to delve into and understand create insights into all sorts of intellectual areas: philosophy, rhetoric, politics, logic, hardcore math, etc. That’s amazing to me. True polymaths. I’d like to see more such interdisciplinarity…

It’s also fascinating looking at how ancient scholars built on each other’s work, and how some works were “lost” or overlooked for centuries, some were destroyed, others considered lost then rediscovered. It’d be neat to see some visual map or representation of what cultures had what inventions and ideas and tools (physical and intellectual) at what periods in time throughout history and in the present…Maybe such info is included in some of these World History Maps?  It’d be neat to display this info in another manner too…

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3 Responses

  1. Well it is very easy to learn more, loads of material can be found on the internet. I believe that the thoughts of Plato and aristotle often conflict, but the neoplatonists were able to bring both together.
    Hail Zeus!

  2. ARISTOTLE AND WESTERN CIVILISATION The Western World is proud of its roots in Greek Philosophy, and prides itself with persons of the calibre of Aristotle and Plato. Today, in the western world [and also in the minds of some Muslims] it has become a common belief that the writings of “Aristotle” ought to be quoted, as if one could derive from it some useful information. Yet, if “Aristotle” really existed, then he could not have been such a knowledgeable scholar / philosopher; as will be observed from the following statement made by a great scholar, an embryologist, by the name of Professor Keith Moore, who states the following: “As far as we know, Aristotle wrote the first embryology book in the 4th century BC. In it he recorded some observations on comparative embryology, especially on the general progress of the developing chick. He promoted, however, the incorrect idea that the human embryo developed from a formless mass that resulted from the union of semen with menstrual blood. Scientific knowledge of embryology did not progress significantly for nearly 2000 years.” [Our emphases] This statement is a clear indictment of Aristotle’s ignorance of Divine Guidance, if he really existed. In other words, if he existed, then, he was either a pagan or an atheist, and also a fool. However, it appears as if the writer of ‘The Classical Heritage in Islam’ became too busy promoting Greek philosophy and dreams. Therefore, to understand their reasoning, let us look at the condition of the people in one of the most advanced Christian countries today, where Christianity at that time may have been established for about one thousand two hundred and seventy-five years. In the book ‘Religion and the Decline of Magic’ we find a well-documented account of their religious activities. We refer to the historical comment made in it, which highlights the important mental condition of the English people during the ‘sixteenth and seventeenth-century.’ On the very first page of the book, it states: “Witchcraft, astrology and every kind of popular magic flourished in sixteenth and seventeenth-century England. At the same time men began to reach for a scientific explanation of the universe , and the Protestant Reformation attempted to take the magic out of religion.” These opening remarks made in support of the author, a great historian, proving the weakness of Christianity and the effect it had on the minds of the Christians after about sixteen hundred years, could be the reason for attacking the Muslims. We must, therefore, be aware of the mind-set of these people who concocted the history books. It could be argued that these conditions were applicable only to the poor and uneducated. Keith Thomas, however, gives an example of some the traditions of the élite: “The one kind of magical healing to which official indulgence was liberally extended was the cure by the royal touch. At a special religious service conducted by leading Anglican clergy the monarch laid his hands upon each member of the long queue of sufferers. The patients approached one by one and knelt before the monarch, who lightly touched them on the face, while a chaplain read aloud the verse from St Mark: ‘They shall lay hands on the sick and they recover’. They then retired and came forward again so that the King might hang round their necks a gold coin strung from a white silk ribbon. This was the healing ritual for the King’s Evil, the name given to scrofula or struma, the tubercular inflammation of the lymph glands of the neck. In practice the term was employed more loosely to comprehend a wide variety of complaints affecting the head, neck, and eyes, particularly swollen lips, tumours, sores and blisters. Scrofula itself was probably caused by infected milk, and a steady stream of deaths from the evil was recorded in the seventeenth-century London Bills Mortality.” With this background knowledge of Christian history of the 1700s, it is clear why the Muslim discoveries and their progress had to endure the onslaught of the Christians. In other words, knowing their own ignorance, they believed that the best defence was to attack. What we Muslims cannot understand today is why they continue with their attacks against Muslims, knowing the truth. Their utterances are mind boggling, for example the following comment made by Martin Plessner: “Islamic science was of course not the only factor that led to the revival of Western science…” [Our emphasis] This statement is an attempt to make it appear as if the ‘Western science’ was in place at the time when the Muslims began their analysis and developments. What they refuse to admit is the fact that the pre-Muslim Arabs [who were pagans] were arguably the most primitive and barbaric people of the world at that time. And it was their acceptance of Islâm, [accepting the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân as the revealed word of Allâh] which led directly to their amazing transformation into the world’s leaders in every facet of human progress. Paul Johnson chastises the modern Western historians: “Unfortunately, historians are rarely as objective as they wish to appear. Biblical history, which for Christians, Jews and atheists alike involves beliefs or prejudices which go to the very root of our being, is an area where objectivity is peculiarly difficult, if not impossible, to achieve.” [Our emphasis] And so does John William Draper in his momentous work, The History of the Intellectual Development of Europe, which we recommend to non Muslims to read: “I have to deplore the systematic manner in which the literature of Europe has contrived to put out of sight our scientific obligations to the Mohammedans. Surely they can not be much longer hidden. Injustice founded on religious rancour and national conceit can not be perpetuated forever. What should the modern astronomer say when, remembering the contemporary barbarism of Europe, he finds the Arab Abdul Hassan speaking of tubes, to the extremities which ocular and objective dioptres, perhaps sights, were attached, as used at Meragha? ……The Arab has left his intellectual impress on Europe, as, before long, Christendom will have to confess; he has indelibly written it on the heavens, as any one may see who reads the names of the stars on a common celestial globe.” He goes on to say that: The Arabs have given the world advanced knowledge in every field, be it in Botany; irrigation; textile fabrics; iron; steel; rice; sugar; breeding of sheep, cattle and horses; flood gates; wheels; pumps; the compass; time keeping pieces and the list goes on and on. Both submissions are truthful! It is for this reason that we ought to verify the claims made by most of the old and modern non-Muslim Western writers. One would like to believe that the pagan Greeks, whom the Western world claims inspired intellectual and scientific developments in Europe, could not have been in the same state (after becoming Christians), as that of the English in the 1700s. But, the following was documented: “The revenue from the property of the Greek Church in 1877 was £10,571. The prelates receive a salary from the state, the bishops £145, and the archbishops £180. The inferior clergy receive none, but are entirely dependent on the fees they earn for various spiritual services and superstitious observances, praying for the sick, exorcising the evil eye, consecrating a new house or fishing boat, or purifying one bought from a Turk.” Clearly they are not regarding the aforementioned facts as a history of their ignorance. About superstition, it is said that the pre-Muslim Arabs were not inclined to it. Our opinion however, is that this is true of the early Muslim Arabs: “Nor are Arabs, generally speaking, superstitious in other respects: of dreams and omens they make little account; nor does the apprehension of ghosts, spectres, apparitions, demons, and the like often disquiet their hours of loneliness or darkness; stories of such a character, though embodied here and there in Arab literature, in the Thousand and one Nights for example, are less frequently of Arab than of foreign origin, generally Persian.” This fact reveals an important trait of the Arabs. It uncovers a part of the reason for their amazingly rapid progress. Muslims are not shy to reveal that they were ignorant before they became Muslims, which is opposite to the pagan European nations. This is made clear from what follows: The Contrast Muslims are commanded in the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân to be just, even if it is against them. The guidance of the Divine Book states: “O you who believe! Stand out firmly for Allâh, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice. Be just; that is next to Piety; and fear Allâh, for Allâh is well acquainted with all that ye do.” [Al-Qur’ân 5:8] The non-Muslims never mention this command, especially when they write about the Muslims and non-Christians. It is clear that the non-Muslim Europeans suppressed the achievements of the early Muslims. Refer to Draper above. The original documents of the Europeans, which chronicled their earlier achievements, were not preserved. In fact they are untraceable. Is it not convenient to quote from lost books? To be blunt the non-Muslim European claims cannot be substantiated by the production of original works. It is claimed that the Muslim Arabs were awakened by the works of the “great” men of Greece, namely Plato and Aristotle. Today, Plato (427-347 BC?) – Aristotle (384-322 BC?) are quoted freely and yet there are no original works of them in existence. They were only acclaimed to have been great Greek “philosophers” from the 12th century CE. Their “works” seem not to have been preserved in its original form but some claim that part of it was preserved in the language of the Muslim Arabs, who made these translations from some lost originals and preserved only the translations. What is of importance to know is the following, – although it causes great problems: “Honesty and accuracy, as we understand them, did not exist in those days. For three hundred years prior to Nicæa no historical records existed, so there was no great difficulty in deluding the people as to the past story of the cult. Anything could be added to or subtracted from its past beliefs without undue comment.” They have many problems, which seem difficult to overcome. Let us ponder over the following: (1) It is claimed that the Jews were one of the oldest offspring of the monotheistic tribes in the world with a developed culture and could have been considered civilised. If they were compared with the Greeks before the Children of Isrâ’îl were raped by them and thereafter by the Romans, which made them either Greek or Roman subjects, but not a nation or a tribe. (Today, the “Jews” actually should be called Greek-Roman subjects or ‘The sons of Darkness’ – this conclusion is as a result of the secret history of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Therefore, people are wondering who were the Essenes – in fact the Essenes were the last of the children of Isrâ’îl and the followers of the prophets [Allâh is pleased with them]). They (the Jews) have forged the practice of circumcision and the washing of their bodies. They only introduced vowels into their language from the fifth (?) century CE to the tenth century CE. What then was the condition of the pagan Greeks when the Bible had no vowels? Was the Greek language ever compatible with monotheism? The cultured Allâh-fearing Muslims crossed into Spain from North Africa in the eighth century (711 CE) and met up with a barbaric race who knew, inter alia nothing about personal hygiene. The Muslims taught the Europeans how to wash and bathe. We substantiate this statement to allay all suspicion of bias, by referring to one of the most learned Professors of the West viz. the renowned author, John William Draper. He describes the conditions of the Europeans (when the Muslims crossed the Mediterranean, entered Spain and transformed them) as follows: “From the barbarism of the native people of Europe, who could scarcely be said to have emerged from the savage state, unclean in person, benighted in mind, inhabiting huts in which it was a mark of wealth if there were bulrushes on the floor and straw mats against the wall; miserably fed on beans, vetches, roots, and even the bark of trees; clad in garments of untanned skin, or at the best of leather – perennial in durability, but not conducive to personal purity – a state in which the pomp of royalty was sufficiently and satisfactorily manifested in the equipage of the sovereign, an ox-cart, drawn by not less than two yokes of cattle, quickened in their movements by the goads of pedestrian serfs, whose legs were wrapped in wisps of straw ; from a people, devout believers in all the wild fictions of shrine-miracles and preposterous relics ; from the degradation of a base theology, and from the disputes of ambitious ecclesiastics for power, it is pleasant to turn to the southwest corner of the continent, where, under auspices of a very different kind, the irradiations of light were to break forth. The crescent in the West was soon to pass eastward to its full.” (2) It is claimed that the Greeks had one common language since the days when their habitat was known as Hellas. Then surely, this language (which was their primary means of communication), would have developed to a level where the Hellenic people themselves could easily have comprehended the “teachings” of their “great Philosophers”. Why, then, was it not possible for them to have used the works of “Plato” and “Aristotle” in the same manner as it were used by the Muslim Arabs as claimed? (3) The existence of “Plato” and “Aristotle”, is sometimes said to have been derived from ‘legends’, therefore, we must ask, “Was there really a “Plato” and an “Aristotle”?” And if they existed, were their theories based on man made ideas without the guidance of the Almighty Creator? (4) There are many reasons for questioning the authenticity of their works. Here we will only deal with one part of the question viz. why would Muslims make translations but not keep the Greek originals or why was it not found amongst the Arabic versions? It is a known fact that the Muslims, as it is claimed, have no Greek original works in their possession. From where and from whom did the Muslims derive their philosophy? Muslims would violate Qur’ânic injunction if they were to make claims without substantiation. Muslims are commanded in 2:111: “Bring your proof if you are truthful”. The “missing original works” remain a problem. The reader is reminded here that much of the literature of the early Muslims was obliterated: [Refer to J. W. Draper’s Book] “As an architect may judge of the skill of the ancient Egyptians in his art from a study of the Pyramids, so from these relics of Saracenic learning we may demonstrate the intellectual state of the Mohammedan people, though much of their work has been lost and more has been purposely destroyed.” [Our emphases] There are many other reasons for not believing their stories. We, however, will have to analyse some of the reasons, which caused the early Muslims to reject their theories. It is also necessary to examine the possibility of the Muslims using and following the pagan “philosophy”. The reason for doing so is to find out if their theories were compatible with that of the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân. Could it have been possible for the Muslims to agree with the pagan beliefs and the belief in a man god (Trinity)? None of the rational Muslim thinkers could have accepted those pagan ideas. It would not have benefited them in any way. This is strongly supported in the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân: “…Say: Are those who know and those who know not alike? …” [Al-Qur’ân 39:9] The Pagans were oblivious of the Qur’ânic guidance revealed by Allâh, in contrast to the Arabs who, according to Draper, were guided by revelation in pursuit of their achievements: “With a pride perhaps not altogether inexcuasable, the Arabians boasted of their language as being the most perfect spoken by man. Mohammed himself, when challenged to produce a miracle in proof of the authenticity of his mission, uniformly pointed to the composition of the Koran, its unapproachable excellence vindicating its inspiration. The orthodox Moslems – the Moslems are those who are submissively resigned to the Divine will – are wont to assert that every page of that book is indeed a conspicuous miracle. It is not then surprising that, in the Arabian schools, great attention was paid to the study of language, and that so many celebrated grammarians were produced. By these scholars, dictionaries, similar to those now in use, were composed; their copiousness is indicated by the circumstance that one of them consisted of sixty volumes, the definition of each word being illustrated or sustained by quotations from Arab authors of acknowledged repute. They had also … cyclopedias such as the Historical Dictionary of Sciences of Mohammed Ibn Abdallah, of Granada.” [Our emphases] It is clear from history that the West could not have been the source from which the Muslims developed their achievements. It is for this reason that we shall show how and what caused their development, under the following heading. THE REASON FOR THE BIRTH OF THE MUSLIM PURE-THINKERS “Say! If the sea were ink for the words of my Rabb, the sea would surely be exhausted before the words of my Rabb were exhausted, though We brought the like of it to add (thereto).” [Al-Qur’ân 18:109] It is necessary to examine a few of the arguments, to understand the birth of the Muslim pure-thinkers. It is, however, important today, that we remind one another that the main purpose for using the term pure-thinking is to restore the original unity of Muslims, as taught in the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân. It should be borne in mind that Islâm transformed everyone who accepted Islâm, whether a person was a pagan, atheist, sun-worshipper, Hindu, Buddhist, Christian or a “Jew”, after they became Muslims. They became able to use the created things, as it ought to be used. One may argue, but why is the Western Nations using the laws of nature so wonderfully? The answer to this question is very simple. After Islâm had opened the doors of scientific inquires and established the method of how to uncover knowledge, people can now advance with that which the Muslims have taught the world by laying the foundation of every branch of knowledge. In fact Islâm taught people how to control and use things, which non Muslim people are wont to worship. Everyone who uses the Muslim principles can advance though they do not obey all the Muslim laws. Let us give the background of how it took place. Firstly, the nature of humankind is such that they learn from what they observe and study. From this method humankind becomes aware that what they have perceived could be understood as true, though they may not know everything about the nature of it. This realisation makes humankind become aware that there are more things to know. Once this becomes known, then, they ought to be aware that their nature is such that they can attain little by themselves. Nay, they realise that they could succeed in understanding the order of most physical things but have miserably failed in understanding all the laws that govern themselves. Therefore, the search for more guidance continues. This was the kind of experience which the Arabs had encountered before they became Muslims. When they were exposed to the first few verses of the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân, they realised that this was the path forward, as humankind learns from the known to uncover the unknown. The difference between the Muslim pure-thinkers and the pagan “philosophers” is that, the Muslim pure-thinkers use Divine revelation and reason, whereas the pagan “philosophers” depend only on reason which is not free from irrational ideas. For the Muslims, Divine revelation is like a microscope that sharpens their reasoning and is the cause of the uncovering of the secrets of nature and rational thinking. The Arabic language is the unique instrument that makes it easier to understand the Divine revelation – as the Arabic words have vast meanings and the Arabic language has a unique root system. One has to admit that Divine Revelation is something that is unique only to Islâm. It was in fact the first few lines of Divine Revelation that made them start the process of analysing the order of the created things, as it made them aware that nothing was created in vain. One of the major factors that a researcher ought to understand about the early Muslims is the fact that the Muslim teachings led them to put logic first. This simple but unique fact is supported as follows: “They (the early Muslim) put logic first” [Our emphasis]. It was with the use of logic that early Muslims discovered the tool, which is called pure-thinking. They used and examined the following verses to the best of their ability. The literal translation of the few Divine verses is: “Read in the name of thy Rabb (The One who fosters a thing in such a manner as to make it attain one condition after another until it reaches its goal of completion) – Who creates Creates man from an ‘alaq (clot or leech like clot or hanging object) Read and thy Rabb is most Generous Who taught by the pen, Taught man what he knew not.” [Al-Qur’ân 96:1-5] [Please, note that we reiterate that we are using the attribute Rabb and have not translated it as Lord throughout this discourse, as lord does not convey its true meaning]. Let us analyse what effect the words of the Arabic verses may convey, if examined and interpreted from within the Divine microscopic point of view. This is important, so that we may understand what the guidance could convey. It is the following verses that we need to translate, so that its inner meanings may become clear. It states: اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ خَلَقَ الْإِنسَانَ مِنْ عَلَق اقْرَأْ وَرَبُّكَ الْأَكْرَمُ الَّذِي عَلَّمَ بِالْقَلَمِ عَلَّمَ الْإِنسَانَ مَا لَمْ يَعْلَمْ “ ’Iqra’ bismi Rabbikal-ladhee khalaq, khalaqal-insâna min ’alaq ’Iqra’ wa Rabbukal-Akram ’Alladhee ‘allama bil-Qalam ‘Allamal-insâna mâ lam ya’-lam” What is important to understand is the fact that these few words contain the purpose of creation and what is beneficial for humankind in a nutshell. Many have written vast commentaries on this subject. Each phrase requires a thorough examination, to understand why the pagan Arabs submitted to Islâm. This would reveal the reasons for their great achievements in such a short time after having received the Divine guidance. We shall have to expound on the method of how we derived a deeper understanding of the first verse, so that our method may become clear. Analysing the first commanding word ’Iqra’, which literally means to ‘read’, ‘recite’ or ‘proclaim’ but in the light of its context, there is room for a more enriched meaning. The reason for wanting to uncover its meaning is to become able to understand why the very people who became Muslims were greatly moved by these verses and became very successful by using its guidance. Their success brings home the fact that they better understood the words, as they must have known the vast meanings of the words. This is clear from history as to how steadfast they were and of their many discoveries they made. Their achievements bear witness that they had a deeper understanding of the meanings of the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân. Hence, this is the cause of their great success in various fields of study. Therefore, it is important that we take a closer look at the root of the word ’Iqra’ in the light of its context. The word ’Iqra’ is followed by the words bismi of which the preposition ‘bi’, in this case, denotes “Seeking the assistance of the One who causes any form of creation”. And, ism here signifies the highest source of intelligence of the One, who caused everything and gave it order – in order that humankind may understand. In other words, bismi cannot be accepted in this case only as meaning ‘in the name of’ or as ‘with the assistance of.’ Furthermore, the word is connected with one of the most important attributes of Allâh, which is the cause that some of the words lose its common literal meaning. Yet, the meaning developed is still within its linguistic confines. In this sense the meaning develops to one of the most important directions, which we ought to understand in the Qur’ânic context with the use of the attribute of Allâh, namely: Rabb. The word Rabb should not be seen in the light of the ordinary linguistic meaning, when it is used for The Almighty Allâh. Hence, the important point to understand is the application of the attribute Rabb, as Allâh has made everything subject to a specific order and purpose. Therefore, everything must go through a process of development. This constitutes the fundamental aspect of the attribute Rabb. This means that the order or the nature of created things will only become known if a study of what is known is made. Let us give an example in order to understand what the attribute of Allâh, namely Rabb caused to be uncovered. If it is applied rationally: ‘Our own needs must be fulfilled with what is required and not by simply saying that it is there but it remains out of reach or hidden – likewise, we cannot just say that Allâh exists but cannot prove it – everyone of us must seek Him. This is why the early Muslims discovered that revelation is the phenomenon with which the Creator becomes known. The combination of the words ’Iqra’, bismi and Rabb – also contains the element in its meaning: To uncover; explore; comprehend; significance; evolution and the use of interpretation to the bismi i.e. highest level of Divine guidance. The root word qara’a by itself contains very important elements for rational development. That is, to read; proclaim; recite; study; comprehend; construe = i.e. to interpret the meaning of (something): you can construe that in different ways; analyse; and explain. In other words, that which is the cause to uncover or causes one to be informed or to be the cause that intelligent information is uncovered. The word Khalaqa also plays a very important role, as the word not only means to create but also to shape; form; mould; formulate; generate and combining – but more important: from nothing. The first phrase that needs to be unlocked, states: “’Iqra’ bismi Rabbikal-ladhee khalaq”, as its deeper meanings needs to be understood. Let us attempt to unlock the guidance of the Arabic phrases into a non-monotheist language, in order to try and understand what it could have meant to the early thinking Arab mind. For them, the inner meaning of verses 1-5, by interlocking the verses, could have meant the following: (1). ‘Study to uncover the order of the creation, of the One who fosters a thing in such a manner, as to make it attain one condition after another until it reaches its goal of completion, in order to understand His creation.’ This must have made them realise that their idols have never revealed anything to them. They themselves were the creators or the Rabb of the idols. Therefore, it must have made sense to them. The next phrase reveals “khalaqal insâna min’ ’alaq”. The early-Muslim Arabs could have understood this at that time as follows: (2). ‘He created – humankind from an ’alaq (a clot which caused the human being to come into existence with love).’ They became aware of the fact that their idols were incapable, lifeless, and useless and therefore it was not possible to have shown such compassion and love. Nor could it have been possible for the idols to create the same. The Arabs themselves had made these lifeless idols with their own hands and worshipped created things. The inspiring words continue: “’Iqra’ wa Rabbukal-Akram”, these words must have caused them to become zealously interested to know more about their Rabb. Let us try to unlock the inner meanings of it, in the light of how the early Arab mind could have understood it: (3). ‘Study to uncover the order of creation, of the One who fosters a thing in such a manner, as to make it attain one condition after another until it reaches its goal of completion, in order to understand His Honourable excellence.’ The awakening of their intelligence by these revelations, made them analyse the created things systematically. No pagan could or have ever revealed such inspiring information to anyone. The Arabs listened with great care to the Holy Prophet Muhammad Mustafâ (Allâh is pleased with him) who proclaimed this inspiring guidance. The second last phrase of the Divine message says, “’Alladhee ‘allama bil Qalam”. These words informed them how their findings could benefit them and others. Let us elucidate this, so that the non-monotheist mind may understand: (4). ‘The Generous Creator reveals the excellent use of the pen for the benefit of humankind.’ The Honourable Creator has revealed that the essence of humankind’s development will depend upon the use of the pen. Every scientist needs to record his or her findings. People’s knowledge seems not to have included the use of the pen until Allâh informed everyone. Before this, the pagan Arabs believed in lifeless things and, never kept records of their findings. Our Rabb revealed the most important law of how to uncover what is unknown to us. He says, “‘Allamal-insâna mâ lam ya-‘lam”. The deeper-inner meaning of it, according to the early Arab mind, could have been as follows: (5). ‘He taught humankind the science of unlocking the unknown, which they knew not.’ The Divine guidance was the cause that after they accepted Islâm and became believers that they began the science of pure-thinking but what is implied by the term pure-thinking? To understand this, one must first develop the understanding why the Arabs, after believing in idols for centuries, could simply give it up and submit to an Unseen Creator. In other words, the law of unlocking the unknown is that, one must first study the known. If this is not sufficient evidence that the above five verses contain the necessary guidance to make such radical changes, then, we might as well not pay any attention to pure-thinking. Therefore, we agree with those Muslims who claimed that the Muslim manner of pure-thinking (and not the pagan “philosophy”) was purely a Muslim development. These verses were the first reasons that the early Muslims examined the created things and unlocked the natural laws that governed the created things. This widened their understanding and thereby strengthened their belief. Their discoveries made them aware and they became more steadfast because they realised that they were on the right path. The exchange of idols for the Unseen Almighty Allâh ought to prove this point. We cannot agree with those who claim that it was the “Greek philosophy” which made the Muslims to develop all their achievements because of the afore-going reasons. If any person objects to this, then we pose a few very simple questions: (I) Why did those who used “philosophy” not accept Islâm? (ii) Could those who knew the truth, by using the instruments of “philosophy” not have been capable to inform their fellow beings that Christianity does not comply with the truth, which ought to emerge through the use of “philosophy”? (iii) Those who used the “Greek sciences” and became aware that, ‘Platonism enjoyed the advantage of being firmly embedded in Christian thought,’ and remained silent about the wrong understanding which emerged from their teachings are they to be followed? (iv). Is it not true that the components, which constitute “Philosophy”, as used by the Muslims do not follow the same sequence as that which was used by the “Greeks” and the West yesterday and today? (v) Are the answers to these questions not the reason the early Muslims could not have followed the pagan Greeks and Romans? Is it not true that the Muslims would only have accepted those things, which were provable and the truth? These questions lead us to the second point: Secondly, once humankind becomes aware that there are things which are not tangible and cannot be perceived with their innate knowledge or by the use of their senses, for example, the life within themselves, then, they start looking for guidance. Once this happens, humankind searches everywhere for the answer and our Rabb gives the answer. The subject could be analysed from chapter 15, verse 29: “So when I have (justly) adapted (the component parts of the mortal) and expanded it by My Divine inspiration, grow submissively (according to Allâh’s Divine Scheme)” This in fact proves that the human being is structured and developed in accordance with the Divine Scheme. The component parts of a mortal are so planned in order for it to become complete. If one wants to disagree with the above Qur’ânic statement as translated, then one must inform us if human beings are only a physicochemical combination of some of the elements of chemistry which developed without a Planner? Or what is it that makes us alive and then die? For Muslims, our creation and resurrection is but like a single function for the Creator. This means that it must be treated as a single entity. The Divine Book states: “Your creation or your raising is only like a single nafs (life essence).” [Al-Qur’ân 31:28] In other words, the function of creating the human beings and their resurrection is simple for Allâh. Knowing that guidance is needed to uncover the knowledge about those things, which are not perceivable with our senses, the Muslims believe that they ought to turn towards their Rabb, as the Holy Prophet Muhammad Mustafâ (Allâh is pleased with him) informed them about things, which they did not know before. It is for this reason that chapter 1 of the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân was revealed, in order for humankind to know how to ask for more guidance. Our Rabb reveals that the following words are the best: “You do we serve and You do we beseech for help. Guide us on the right path, – the path of those upon whom You have bestowed favours.” [Al-Qur’ân 1, 1-4] Some of the ‘favours’ are nothing else but guidance directly from Allâh to us; this is the best of knowledge. Therefore, the early Muslims discovered through the guidance from Allâh that it was His Prophets (Allâh is pleased with them) whom He had sent that showed the path of opening the door of knowledge. This brings us to the third point. Thirdly, what was the reason that humankind had to receive guidance through the Prophets (Allâh is pleased with them), one may ask? The answer is simple the Creator knew that the nature in which He has created humankind is such that after they have used their innate inquisitive mind, they will seek to find Him, though some may deny it. Therefore, the kind of knowledge the intelligent person expects to find from those whom are called Prophets (Allâh is pleased with them) must be such, that it should not be the same as that which humankind themselves could produce. We have not overlooked the question about the Creator; which brings us to the fourth point. Fourthly, we have said that what we can observe and touch are things, which we ought to be able or become able to understand to be true, or that it exists. This knowledge informs us that everything, which is tangible, or what we could perceive through our senses, is subjected to an order. We cannot accept the theory of “Plato” which deals with ‘Forms’ or ‘Idealism’, as it denigrates the Creator. By simply looking at the known things, makes it impossible to comprehend the Creator in a tangible way. The Arabic Glorious Qur’ân reveals: “Wonderful Originator of the samâwât (the entire universe excluding the earth) and the earth! How could He have a son when He has no consort? And He created everything, and He is the Knower of all things. That is Allâh, your Rabb. There is no god but He; the Creator of all things; therefore serve Him, and He has charge of all things. Vision comprehends Him not, and He comprehends [all] vision; and He is the Subtile, the Aware. Clear proofs have indeed come to you from your Rabb; so whoever sees, it is for his own good; and whoever is blind, it is to his own harm. And I am not a keeper over you.” [Al-Qur’ân 6: 102-105] The ‘1926’ Heisenberg’s (1901-76, German physicist) discovery reveals a wonderful fact (for the time being), for example that, ‘no physical measurements can tell you that there is an electron on this table and that it is also lying still’ (Al-Tawhid Vol. IV, No. 4, July-September 1987, p. 66). What does it mean? It means that things that we cannot see are not necessarily non-existent. The research, however, will continue to uncover it, then, something else will come to the fore, which we may not see until it is uncovered then, again the research will continue. It is for this reason that the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân has made humankind aware that they must examine the order of the created things, so that humankind may become conscious of the fact that a Greater Mind is at work. It is important to understand that we ought to realise Allâh, just as we find goodness in things that we cannot see. The Arabic Glorious Qur’ân is replete with various kinds of guidance for humankind, in order to know their Creator. For example, the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân reveals in clear terms that Allâh is not like His creation. This is made very clear in the following (chapter) of the Divine Book: “Say: He, Allâh, is One. Allâh is He on Whom all depend. He begets not, nor is He begotten; and none is like Him.” [Al-Qur’ân 112:1-4] Once humankind study the guidance of the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân, they will become aware that Allâh has not burdened them with information beyond the ability of human intelligence. Allâh reveals: “Allâh imposes not on any nafs a duty beyond its scope.” [Al-Qur’ân 2:286] How is it possible that all the non-Muslim-Europeans who were and are exposed to “philosophy” (meaning those who became able to understand how to uncover the truth about a subject which one is analysing) and acquired “knowledge” and “wisdom” by being exposed to the works of Aristotle have not accepted Islâm? Why could they not have understood the truth of the Qur’ânic revelations? Did they not translate the Arabic Glorious Qur’ân as early as 1143 CE into Latin – with the help of the Muslim dictionaries? Is it not claimed that “Aristotle’s works” became known first through the Arabic works and thereafter in other European languages? For example the works which were claimed to have been translated into Latin? We can understand that “Plato’s” works are in direct conflict with Islâm and rational thinking as will become clear later – that is if we can find the proof that his works really existed. This brings us to the story of how “Aristotle’s works” is supposed to have reached us: “After his [Aristotle’s] death his works had a strange and remarkable history. His library, containing all his own autographs, many of them being MSS. [MSS = manuscripts] of unpublished and unfinished treatises, was bequeathed to Theophrastus, his chief disciple, who, dying thirty five years later, bequeathed them in turn, together with his own books and writings, to Neleus, a Peripatetic scholar. Neleus took the whole precious collection with him to his home at Scepsis, in Asia Minor, and his heirs concealed it in a vault to prevent its being seized by the king of Pergamus, who was then levying contributions for his royal library. The Aristotelian MSS. were thus lost to the world for 187 years. About the year 100 B.C. they were brought out of their hiding place and sold to a wealthy book collector, named Apellicon, who carried them back to Athens. In the year 86 B.C., on the taking of Athens by Sulla, the library of Apellicon was seized and brought to Rome. There some learned Greeks obtained access to it; Tyrannion, the friend of Cicero, arranged the MSS.; and Andronicus of Rhodes undertook the task of furnishing a correct text, and a complete edition of the philosophical works of Aristotle, out of the materials at his disposal. He arranged the different treatises and scattered fragments under their proper heads, and published what was henceforth received as the authorised edition of the works of Aristotle. It seems reasonable to believe with Grote that “our Aristotle,” that is, the collection of writings which under this name has come down to modern times, is none other than the edition of Andronicus, and thus dates from about the year 50 B.C.,” [Our emphases]. [The Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition 1875 p. 512.] After analysing the above anecdote very meticulously and bearing in mind the consequences of what was said, we would like to know who of the truthful Muslims would believe this amusing story. Let us rather analyse the reported statement as follows: It appears as if we have an irrevocable problem, as the books and writings of Theophrastus, appears to have been mixed with that of Aristotle’s library, which contained all Aristotle’s autographs and manuscripts of which some were unpublished and unfinished treatises. What this means is that, at the time when Andronicus arranged it, he could not have known which of the material belonged to Aristotle or to Theophrastus, as no mention was made of how one would be able to identify it. We do not know if Theophrastus could have been the scribe of Aristotle. When the precious collection was seized and taken to Rome, what guarantee is there that it was not mixed or to say that nothing got lost or mixed? There is another problem, that is, when Neleus gave it to some unknown heirs of him, they, it is claimed, put it into a vault. This causes us to question if the vault was an arched structure, which was a room in a house or if it was a cellar having an arched roof down to floor level or was it a burial chamber underground? Whatever one wants to answer, the fact remains that some damage must have occurred. Irrespective of what the vault was made of or where it was situated, the documents must have been damaged after such a long period. Even the ink could not have been so good that it never faded. Nor could the material have been so good that no part of it could have become rotten or affected by bacterial or fungal action. Ponder over the following old non-Muslim-European custom as it may uncover some of the reasons, which may have contributed to the fungal action: “To these Saracens (Muslims) we (Christian-Europeans and today we must include the agnostics and atheists of European descent) are indebted for many of our personal comforts. Religiously cleanly, it was not possible for them (Muslims) to cloth themselves according to the fashion of the natives of Europe, in a garment unchanged till it dropped to pieces of itself, a loathsome mass of vermin, stench, and rags” [Our emphases]. Therefore, we believe that there must have been some damage caused by their clothing, hence, the need for Textual Critics to rectify and reconstruct the damaged and the missing parts, that is, if it really existed. There is a further problem, that is, in 86 BC was it not part of the Roman custom not to preserve literature which they could not read? If the answer is no, why then in 48 BC did they burn the great Ptolemaic Library and again in 389 CE they did the same with the ‘Daughter Library?’ Does it not appear as if the Roman custom was such, that they did not like the literature of other people? In Bosnia (1995) we were shown on SATV what the Christian-European-Serbs have done to the Libraries belonging to the Muslim Bosnians. Be that as it may, we cannot believe that the Romans would have allowed it to be preserved. Furthermore, it is stated that Andronicus ‘undertook the task of furnishing a correct text, and a complete edition of the philosophical works of Aristotle, out of the materials at his disposal. He arranged the different treatises and scattered fragments under their proper heads, and published what was henceforth received as the authorised edition of the works of Aristotle’. Yet, no mention was made that he separated the works of Theophrastus and undertook only to furnish a correct version of Aristotle’s works. Therefore, we cannot agree that one may say that it was the works of “Aristotle” alone, after Andronicus reconstructed it. Could it be that it does not include any parts of the works of Theophrastus? Would anyone be able to say truthfully, that the autographs and manuscripts only belonged to Aristotle after they had analysed the above quotation? The important fact is that no one could have been able to develop Aristotle’s works until 50 BC. If, however, it is argued that they used it thereafter, why then did the Greeks and the Romans accept Christianity? Nevertheless, let us ponder over the submission of Alfred Guillaume: “The West really knew no more of Plato than they knew of Aristotle by direct contact; but Platonism enjoyed the advantage of being firmly embedded in Christian thought. The earliest (but incomplete) version of the Metaphysics to reach Paris came in c.1200 from Byzantium; a few years later another incomplete version translated from the Arabic arrived. The complete work was not in the hands of scholars till after 1260. The Nicomachean Ethics arrived first from Greek sources, then from Arabic, and lastly in its entirety, translated direct from the Greek, about 1250. The Physics and De Anima were received first from Greek” [Our emphases]. The last part of the above quotation is a fable: “The complete work was not in the hands of scholars till after 1260. The Nicomachean Ethics arrived first from Greek sources, then from Arabic, and lastly in its entirety, translated direct from the Greek, about 1250. The Physics and De Anima were received first from Greek.” Compare it with the following words: “It seems reasonable to believe with Grote that “our Aristotle,” that is, the collection of writings which under this name has come down to modern times, is none other than the edition of Andronicus, and thus dates from about the year 50 BC” After one has given this thought, one must go back to the first line of the above quotation, “The West really knew no more of Plato than they knew of Aristotle by direct contact…” It ought to be made clear that the whole fable of Aristotle must be rejected. To understand the argument in greater detail, one ought to examine the following argument to understand the non-Muslim-European style of creating evidence for something which they have: “…Bedouin shepherds came across in a cave in Wadi Qumran…a 23 foot leather scroll containing the complete text of the book Isaiah in Hebrew. Expert examination of the document revealed beyond doubt that the Isaiah text dated from 100 B.C. …This copy of Isaiah, over 2,000 years old, is a unique proof of the reliability of the holy Scriptures that have been handed down to us, for the text agrees exactly with what we have in our present day Bible… The oldest and fullest MS. in Hebrew was the Codex Petropolitanus, dating from A.D. 916. By the discovery of the leather scroll of Isaiah at the Dead Sea the Hebrew text has been carried back to almost exactly 1,000 years before… These old MSS. are the most convincing answer to all doubts as to the genuineness and reliability of the text that we have in our Bibles today” [Our emphases]. Unfortunately, the book of Esther which is one of the Old Testament’s books was not found amongst The Dead Sea Scrolls to support the authenticity of the Bible or Keller’s view. Nevertheless, when one considers the definition of Metaphysics, it ought to become clear that if it was claimed that the Greeks knew the purpose of Metaphysics. (Here, we are not referring to the meaning of ‘meta’ meaning ‘after’ and what physics mean but the important meaning of the complete word which means: ‘the branch of philosophy that deals with first principles, especially of being and knowing’), then we have a major problem. That is, if the definition is correct. Before we analyse the problem, let us first make it clear, that, if Aristotle improved Plato’s works, then it could mean that a very large portion of the early “Greek élite” ought to have known of their theories. The reasons being, once a person was exposed to Metaphysics then the process of thinking ought to begin. The claim which should be remembered is that Plato’s works were used in the Christian Bible. Therefore, it had to be well known for this reason, hence, if they improved it by using Aristotle’s works, then why was Aristotle’s works not well known in the same way as that of Plato? This would have attracted the thinking mind. Let us analyse the statement, which says: “…Platonism enjoyed the advantage of being firmly embedded in Christian thought.” This statement is problematic. The reason is, if it means that there were followers of Plato’s theory who saw to it that their theory be incorporated into the ‘Christian thought’, then it means that ‘Christian thought’ could not have been Divinely inspired. On the other hand, if it means that the divinely inspired Biblical message was conformable with that of Plato’s theory – then the problem still remains. The reason is obvious, because of the following: The theory of materialism claimed that nothing but space-filling physical objects are ultimately real. Therefore, if it is claimed that Plato’s belief was based on the idea that something real must have ‘Forms’, then, this could have led to the formation of the Biblical ‘Christian thought.’ What does it mean? It means that the theory of Jesus of the Bible, which says that Jesus, is man and god at the same time, or that: ‘When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God’, in order to comply with Plato’s theory. It could well be true, therefore, this could be the reason we could only trace the New Testament manuscripts to the 13th century, for during that time the works of Plato and Aristotle became well known, as claimed. With these arguments, it ought to be clear why the Muslims could not have copied or used Plato’s works as a guide for them, if it [ever] existed before Islâm. If any Muslim may have used such theories on the basis that it is correct, then they have erred seriously. The following argument was created to support the idea that the Greek works were in use at the beginning of Islâm or during the early period of Islâm. Let us refer to the statement of M. Montgomery Watt, who made the following claims: “When the Muslims conquered Iraq, they found themselves in contact with a living tradition of Hellenistic learning. Several colleges had been established, mostly by Christians, the most prominent being one at Gondeshapur near the head of the Persian Gulf. This latter was run by Nestorian Christians, and was famous for both medical and religious studies” [Our emphasis]. Let us pause for a moment and ponder over the above claim. Could the term medical have meant something to the Christians? To answer the question truthfully, we ask pardon for our frankness. Anyone who is engaged in medical science ought to know the importance of being clean, as it is one of the most important practices in medical science. To explain the importance of this, it would be appropriate to use the words of a great savant of South Africa, Ahmed Deedat. He says: “Let us say that where you have an “input”, you must allow for an “output.” The one who eats, must have the call of nature the toilet or the bush.” Therefore, to be healthy, one ought to wash after he or she had answered ‘the call of nature’. If this were instituted, only then we would have believed that they knew the science of it. One may argue that today, they still do not wash after ‘the call of nature.’ The answer to this is, it was and still could be, regarded as a Muslim ritual, and therefore Christians could abhor it. This fact proves that they were not as knowledgeable as the early Muslims. Nay, the difference between man and animal is a factor that needs to be considered. Animals do not wash when they use the bush or do they have some other means? Humankind ought to wash, as they are able to distinguish between what is good or bad for health. Today, the Muslims are unique in the world as far as this subject is concerned. Even if the works of Plato or Aristotle were a ‘living tradition’, then, it contributed nothing as far as a clean body is concerned. Even in the 21st century the washing of the private parts after visiting the toilet is a Muslim ‘thing’, as the non Muslims still do not wash their private parts after the ‘output’. A SHORT STORY OF THE IMPORTANT THEORY OF PLATO It is claimed: “The West really knew no more of Plato than they knew of Aristotle by direct contact.” This is the view of Alfred Guillaume, who wrote approximately at the same period when the 14th edition of The Encyclopædia Britannica 1929 was produced. This view seems to be problematic, the reason is that, it is claimed by the West that ‘Platonism enjoyed the advantage of being firmly embedded in Christian thought’. For example, the statement made in the Encyclopædia Britannica: “John 1:18 if the true text is “the only begotten God…which is in the bosom of the Father.” It appears as the authors of this edition translated the words as ‘begotten God’ and not as the translators of the King James Version who translated it as ‘begotten Son’. It seems that the reason for this was that, the New Testament also claims: “No man hath seen God at any time.” [John 1:18 King James Version] This is in conflict with what Plato taught. Nevertheless, they found a way to link it with the “philosophy of Plato”. This was done by the following words: “the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him”. The following evidence widens the problem: “The Church could not, in the end, conciliate Platonist eschatology with the dogmas of the resurrection of the flesh and the final judgment…” It appears from the following statement that the Christians have interfered with the works of Plato. There however, is a further important factor, which we should take into consideration, that is, the date of some of the parts of Plato’s works and that: ‘they enjoyed an immense authority based on their attribution to an immediate convert of St. Paul’. It states: “A further powerful influence was exerted by the writings of the so called Dionysius the Areopagite, which laid down the main lines of mediaeval mystical theology and angelology. These works are, in fact, an imperfectly Christianized version of the speculations of Proclus, and cannot date before the very end of the fifth century A.D. at the earliest, but they enjoyed an immense authority based on their attribution to an immediate convert of St. Paul.” It could well be true that the evidence which was revealed about the ‘imperfectly Christianized version’ could lead to the uncovering of some of the facts. The story, or rather the legend continues, let’s say from the ‘Charlemagne’ era. (Please note that the term Charlemagne refers to ‘the close of the 10th century’ AD which belongs to the ‘Innumerable legends’ period. It states: “After their translation into Latin in the ninth century by Johannes Scotus Erigena, their vogue in the West was as great as in the East. Apart from this theological influence, Plato dominated the thought of the earlier Renaissance which dates from the time of Charlemagne in another way.” What this could mean is that the early Renaissance (the early Renaissance we understand to mean the time when the West was still learning from the Muslims) began from the close of the 10th century. It could also be that this was the time when the ‘Christian thought’ was developed in order to conform to that of Plato’s theories or the pagan theories. This could also mean that the reconstruction of the Bible began at the end of the 10th century. Hence, the Massoretic Text of 916 CE (?) came into existence. The appearance of new-information of Aristotle emerged within the following quotation: “Since the West possessed the philosophical writings of Cicero, with the Neo Platonic comment of Macrobius on the Somnium Scipionis, as well as the Latin translation of the first two thirds of the Timaeus by Chalcidius, with his commentary on the text, and versions, also, at least of the Phaedo and Meno, whereas nothing was known of the works of Aristotle except Latin versions of some of the logical treatises, the Middle Age, between Charlemagne and the beginning of the 13th century, when the recovery of Aristotle’s physics and metaphysics from Moors, Persians and Jews began, was much better informed about Plato than about Aristotle; in particular in the various “encyclopedias” of this period, it is the Timaeus which forms the regular background. The thirteenth century saw a change.” The Encyclopædia Britannica, Fourteenth Edition 1929, has 28 columns on Plato’s detailed history, and makes no mention that those who possessed Aristotle’s works were Muslim. Ponder over the following legend of Plato: “His family was, on both sides, one of the most distinguished of Athens. Ariston is said to have traced his descent through Codrus to the god Poseidon; on the mother’s side, the family, that was related to Solon, goes back to Dropides, archon of the year 644 BC “ [Our emphasis]. If the statement of A. Guillaume and the argument above were compared, then it only makes one to wonder! What a pity that we could not say the same, only, of some of the parts of the history of the Bible. What was easier to preserve? : The works of one or two persons whom few follow or the Bible, which is claimed to be the words of God? Nevertheless, when a comparison is made between the stories as given in the 1929 edition and compared with the 1875 edition, then one could appreciate the art of novel writing. Of course, we are not saying that the many editions of the Encyclopædia Britannica are novels. What we mean is that the two stories are definitely different. Be that as it may, what is of more importance is the fact that if the story emanated from the original manuscripts of Plato, then, there would not have been two stories about the same subject but only one. The following statement reveals the important contributions of the early Muslim Arabs: “Thus it may be said that the West owed the recovery of Aristotelian philosophy to the Arabs inasmuch as the interest of European scholars in the works of Aristotle was first kindled by acquaintance with Arabian thought. It can hardly be doubted that Europeans took up the study of Aristotle because their zeal for philosophy had been quickened by contact with Arabian thought” [Our emphases]. What does the above statement mean? The reason for asking this question is because it was already said that: “The Physics and De Anima were received first from Greek.” What is the meaning of this? Does it mean that the Greek version was first received from the Muslims? If the answer is yes, then we would like to know why it was not mentioned that the Muslims did not translate it? Or if the answer is no, then both of the sources are wrong. Yet, they claim that the West had knowledge about Aristotle. This is made clear from their own words: ‘The West owed the recovery of Aristotelian philosophy to the Arabs’. What we would like to know is: How was it possible that the West ‘embedded in Christian thought’ and the Platonic ideas but had at the same time no knowledge of the arguments of Aristotle? The reason for this question ought to be obvious was it not said that Aristotle attended the Academy of Plato? Therefore, they should have known that Plato and Aristotle’s theories were compatible with that of the pagan sun-worshippers, and therefore, also had to be compatible with that of Christianity. Now, ponder over the fact that they claimed that the Arabs engendered the ‘recovery’ of Aristotle’s works. Should one not question their claim? We think one should. The reason is once a person analyses the early documented claims, supposedly made by Aristotle, then there should be no difficulty in understanding what we say. We shall now address this problem as follows: (1). “But yet in the system of Aristotle there was a God who was not part of nature” [Our emphasis]. If this was truly Aristotle’s view then we ask, is he still the great “philosopher” of the West? If the answer is yes, then, why have they not followed him? The West has answered this question in this way: (2). “Aristotle’s utterances on this subject are obscure.” Again, ponder over the words: ‘a God who was not part of nature.’ What is the rational meaning of it? Firstly, the reason they could not have followed him on this point was as a result of their belief in the theory of Trinity, which is like that of pantheism. If, Aristotle’s claim was that nature is ‘pervaded by reason’ and therefore, it means that he has thought that reason ought not to be found in nature, as it would be like pantheism, then he has not understood nature. On the other hand, he has said that ‘there was a God who was not part of nature’ therefore, a contradiction emerges. The following statement causes the problem: (3). “Nature, however, is impersonal, and to speak of it as pervaded by reason, has all the appearance of pantheism.” If all this were true, could Aristotle have been a great philosopher? We leave that answer to the West. Nevertheless, what we ought to clarify is that the Greeks, especially during the fourth and third centuries before Christ, were pagans. For this reason they believed that their gods formed part of the material and natural entities of the universe. Hence, if Aristotle’s works really existed during that time and had made the above claim (i.e. that ‘there was a God who was not part of nature’), then it would have caused one of the biggest uproars! In other words, Aristotle’s claim that nature and person are inseparable and distinct phenomena does not allow space for a belief in gods, which were impersonated through naturalism. The Greeks were sun worshippers i.e. they did not separate gods and nature. For Aristotle, God “was not part of nature”. Such an outcry was not recorded anywhere in the history of the Greeks! Their silence is not in compliance with the nature of the Europeans. For example, the known historical facts concerning the protests that brought into existence the council of Nicæa in 325 CE. This was followed by the protest against the Pope, which led to the formation of the Protestant Church. Also the protesting against bathing that was regarded as a Muslim ritual and led to the killing of those who took a bath. The reason was that the Christians believed those bathing were following the Muslims. We shall not bother to mention the problems of men like Copêrn’icus and others who had encountered many problems. Therefore, we hold that the history and the works of Aristotle are causing doubts it could well be that it was not the work of a philosopher. Let us analyse the argument from another viewpoint: If the Muslims had used “Aristotle’s” works, then why have they not mentioned these contradictory problems? The Muslims must have been able to understand the works of Aristotle, that is, if it ever existed. Therefore, we must quote a more detailed part of what is claimed to have been Aristotle’s work, in order that one may understand what is meant. The statement is as follows: “Nature, or the system prevailing from the earth upwards through the planetary sphere, is full of reason; it does nothing in vain. [Please note that this is said to have been drawn from: ‘the whole of book ii. of the Physical Discourse’]. The formal cause, the form, or perfection, of each thing, is generally to be identified with t
    • First of let me say that I stumbled upon this sight looking for an image of Plato, nuff said.
      But the second response just cracks me up! I’ve heard it so many times from many a Muslim over the years and it amazes me that no one seems to ever be able to retort. Now, I’m not going to go over everything that’s wrong with the reply from Sulaiman but note first that no answer was really given to what was asked (in the title of the post). And in fairness neither did Zeus Almighty nor will I for that matter but I will at least give a link (academyofplatonicstudies.com/video) that may help.
      Now on to the order of business, Sulaiman uses a style of argument or rhetoric which is prominent amongst muslims and quite effective against lesser rhetoricians. Though quite easy to refute, alot of people get sucker punched and then whilst they’re still reeling get peppered with a seemingly nonstop litany disparate and apparent facts, but they’re just a string fallacious syllogism ehich may or may not be valid (in logic valid does not equate to truth).
      Before I get too far off subject, let’s get back to Sulaiman’s argument, in particular the sucker punch. Which of course is: if BLANK really existed blah blah blah. When you get into one of these just like the preceding you can just tune out what ever comes after the word EXISTED and just wait until whomever is speaking is done. You probably wouldn’t be able to get a word in edgewise anyways. I mean jeez just look at his/her reply. All the guy asked for was a light elucidation of the philosophy of two philosphers. Damn!, take a chill pill will ya. Oops, I almost veered off-track again. As, I was saying, what was I saying, oh yeah! The sucker its a hallmark of this particular style to take a patent fact (for you and most of the rest of world)and call it into question which of course induces you to question your belief system. Facts are afterall the foundation of a belief system and if your system is wrecked you can’t argue because you need something to stand on to back up your argument, right? And then you get mad and say something stupid and they stay calm and say something smart and you get even angrier etc., or you just acquiesce and do something something else stupid.
      Anyway, for the benefit of those who for whatever reason get into an argument like this, like I said before just wait until they’re finished and then pick it up at ‘exists’. Don’t worry they’ll be waiting for you, most likely with a wry smile. Now, and this is important, hopefully you have patiently waded through their effluvia, because if you haven’t then they’ll have occassion to interrupt you and you’ll get another earful. O.K., picking up on ‘exists’ proceed along the following lines: So, if so and so didn’t exist then why do we have such and such today, which is attributed to so and so. This is what they’ll be waiting for but don’t let them interrupt, now continue: I can concede that so and so did NOT exist but even you can’t deny such and such because here it is. Another attempt at interruption, most likely taking the form of ‘but its a lie’, stand your ground. True or not, the such and such IS here, it does exist. You just detailed the such and such yourself unless of course you yourself are the progenitor of such and such and just made it up on the spot for your argument. And if that’s the case then you might want to see a psychologist because you’ve got problems my friend.
      Unless they’re practiced or otherwise have some experience in this particular mode of argument you will have shut them up but if they have some skill or some experience you’ll have to go on. So, lets get with it, shall we? Picking up where we left off:
      At this point if not sooner you will have been confronted with the task of proving the existence of so and so. Which you may feel obliged to do so (a common beginners mistake) but if you’ve noticed you’ve done a subtle little trick that our may or may not be aware of (keep in mind his/her mode of argument is formulaic, its proper procedure for them to try to take you back to if so and so exists) and that subtlety is that you’ve thrown out the existence of so and so, you dont care, it’s a moot point (or rather you should have made it so in stage one, doesnt matter how you did it just make sure that is the first thing you do). What you have done is steered the argument to the undenible existence of the such and such that IS present NOW (F’ the past so to speak). They’ll try a few more interrupting and stalling tactics at this point so just remind them that you patiently allowed them to ramble on and and now to kindly show you the same courtesy, you can take a jab at them here to if like (I usually do): or does the Holy Koran not teach politeness or civility?
      At this point the argument is either going to get out of control or if they refuse to concede the such and such as I’ve said before then you’ve won. But we’re supposing that they have some skill and they figure that they’ll get you on your next point. After all you’ve just called their sanity into question, which was a low blow I’ll admit, but they’ll probably think that you got a lucky punch in, so to speak, and won’t be able to go any further. Afterall you’re not a Muslem and havn’t been taught what they’ve been taught therefore your mind is inferior to theirs. Right?
      I’ve been using the terms ‘so and so’ and ‘such and such’ as stand-ins for Plato/Aristotle and their philosphy in order to make the argument more generic for those of you who may not have been able to extropolate the key points of the argument which are the source of a thing (Plato/Aristotle) and the thing itself (their Philosophiesand in particular writings). This thing is long enough as it is and I’m not trying teach a class here but suffice it say that the rest of the argument will end with them forced to admit that if so and so does not exist (Aristotle in this case) then Allah is the source of the philosophy with the admonition that they had better go do penence for refuting the word of the Almighty Allah and in particular to not go around making fools of themselves.
      For the slow ones out there, the jist of the thing is that if they disallow for the existence of so and so and such and such exists and all things proceed from Allah then Allah is its source (I wont elucidate, like I said I’m not trying to teach a class). But in any case along the way they’ll have to go do penance or they will admit that something other than Allah did something greater than Allah to wit: if no man wrote the works of the two men in question then they came from a source that needed no intervention of man and as you should know Allah used an angel G’bril and a man the Holy Prophet Mohammed to transmit the Holy Koran and believe me no Muslem worth his/her salt is going to do that. At least that’s my experience and like I said that first little sequence is usually enough (90% of the time) to shut them up but like I hinted at I’m an asshole and if anyone is foolish enough to want to venture past stage one and get verbally sodomized feel free.
      Two more points if I may, for anyone interested you can read Plato’s (or Allah’s) EUTHYDEMUS, no matter which side of the argument you’re on there should be plenty of pointers for either to sharpen their respective techniques. Be forewarned though its not an easy read if you haven’t had any training in debate, logic or rhetoric. Secondly, for any of you overly sensitive bastards (that includes you poytheists and alternate monotheists that may be going rah, rah right about now) this is not a polemic against Muslems. It just so happens that every time I here an argument proceed as such not withstanding that this piece was obviouly written by a Muslem, the locutor is a practicing Muslem and the hapless interlocutor is a hapless layman that wasn’t taught logic or what have you in Sunday school nor anywhere else. And of the times that I’ve heard it elsewhere the locutor was either a Mormon, a Christian Scientist or a Scientologist with a rare atheist/witch/satanist type. The argument if you havn’t noticed is used to shake your belief system and for whatever reason causes some people to at least consider conversion just because they were beaten in a debate in other words its a slick way proselytizing people without exposing you to gobledeegook particulars of their respective beliefs. Damn!, I did it again, the second point is in case is to read the Koran or the Book of Mormon or what have you its not going to change you anymore than reading a cook book will turn you into an Chef or reading Humpty Dumpty will turn you into an egg.
      P.S. For Trickldown
      What Aristotle and Plato had to say concerned Existence, both what they thought it to be and how you could determine it for yourself. Oh, and like I said, I stumbled onto this site looking for a picture of Plato so unless Google brings you up again for something else I probably won’t be back, no slight against your site but … eh whatever, anyway yours was the 10th picture (Yipee! TOP 10 BABY!).

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