Ibn Sina. Metaphysics - Reader in Philosophy

Ibn Sina. Metaphysics

IBN SINA Abu Ali, or AVICENNA (circa 980-1037) is a scientist, philosopher, doctor, musician. He lived in Central Asia and Iran, was a doctor and a visor under different rulers. In philosophy, he continued the tradition of Arab Aristotelianism, in part Neoplatonism. The main philosophical writings - "The Book of Healing", "Book of Instructions and Instructions" and others-also contain natural scientific views, musical and theoretical positions of Ibn Sina. The treatises of Ibn Sina were unusually popular both in the East and in the West; Encyclopedia of Theoretical and Clinical Medicine "Canon of Medical Science" (at 5 o'clock) - a generalization of the views and experience of Greek, Roman, Indian and Central Asian doctors - for many centuries was an obligatory guide, including in medieval Europe (about 30 Latin publications).

The beginning of higher science. The first chapter on the number of philosophical sciences.

In every science there is something that is studied as [a subject] of this science. This object is of two kinds: the first, the existence of which comes from our action, and the second, the existence of which does not come from our action. An example of the first is our actions, an example of the second is the earth, the sky, animals, plants.

Because of this, the philosophical sciences are divided into two types: the first informs us about our own actions and is called practical science, since its benefit is that it teaches us what we must do in order to arrange our affairs in this world and so that you can hope for salvation in that world.

The second informs us about the state of being of things, so that our soul will find its form and be happy in the next world, as it will be explained in its place; this science is called theoretical.

Each of these two sciences breaks up into three [sciences]. Practical science breaks down into the following three [sciences].

The first is the science of managing the people, so that the necessary community for it is organized.

And this [science] is of two kinds: 1) about what religious laws should be, 2) politics. The first of these is the basis, and the second is a branch and consequence.

The second science is about managing the house, so that the community that is formed in the house between the wife and the husband, the father and children, the master and the servant, was ordered.

The third [science] - about myself, i.e. how a person should be in relation to himself.

Therefore, since a person happens either individually or in a community, and the community is either between family members or between fellow countrymen, then practical science should be divided into three types: the first is the science of city management, the second is the science of house management, the third - the science of managing oneself. Theoretical science is also divided into three types. The former is called the highest, or primary, science, it is also called the science of what lies outside nature.

The second is secondary science, mathematics.

The third - the science of nature, or inferior science.

The triplicity of these sciences follows from the fact that things do not go beyond the limits of three kinds: 1) either their existence is completely unrelated to sensory matter, to union and movement, so that they should be imagined outside of the connection with matter and movement, as , for example, reason, being, unity, causality, causality, and the like, for all this can be imagined separately, independently of sensible things, since they are themselves separated from the sensible; 2) either, although their existence is not separated from sensory matter and from things that are in motion, they can be separated mentally, since for their definition there is no need and to connect them with any of sensory matters or with something moving , as, for example, a triangle, a square, a circle, a length (which can be in gold, silver, wood, and clay), whereas humanity can only be in one particular matter, and therefore humanity and everything to it similar can not be determined otherwise, as in connection with the definition and even in imagination it can not be separated from matter. A triangle and a square, in spite of the fact that they do not exist outside any matter, can still be defined without matter and imagined without; 3) or objects that exist in matter and can only be defined and represented in connection with matter and in a state of motion, examples of which we have already cited.

As for science that knows the nature of things that do not necessarily need matter and movement, some of them can never be related to matter, like reason and truth, which you will learn below, and some may be connected with matter and movement, but this does not follow from the necessity of their nature, such as causality, which can be in the body, or perhaps the quality of the mind, this science is called "metaphysics". The same [science that] knows the nature of things whose existence is necessarily connected with matter, but which does not have a certain inherent matter, such as figures or numbers in the sense in which they are studied by science, is called "mathematics".

And the third science is about nature. In this book, our reasoning and our attention will be turned to these three theoretical sciences.

Explanation of the subject of these three theoretical sciences for the discovery of the subject of higher science.

Of these three sciences, the science of nature is closest to humans and to their understanding, but there are especially many ambiguities in it. The subject of this science is the sensory body, since it is in motion and change, is limited and consists of parts. Another science is mathematics, in which there are less ambiguities and confusion, because it is removed from the movement and change and its subject in general is the quantity, and if it is dismembered, then measure and number. Geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, music, optics, mechanics, the science of moving spheres, the science of instruments and the like are part of mathematics.

The subject of the same higher science is not individual things, its subject is an absolute being, for it is absolute. The content of her questions are those states of being that come from the very existence and are inherently inherent in it, as we said about it when studying the proof.

In the future it will be explained that these states are those states of being that do not emanate from its quantity or movement, which, in a word, are not the subject of two other sciences, mathematics and physics, but proceed exclusively from being as such. We give an example of these three [states].

Parity and oddness, roundness and triangularity, length are inherent in being not because it is being; First there must be a number so that there is parity and oddness, just as a value is needed, so that there is roundness, triangularity, and length. The existence of whiteness and blackness does not stem from the fact that they are being, and not because they are number and magnitude, but because they are peculiar to bodies that are subject to movement and change.

Universal and separate, possibility and reality, probability and necessity, causality and causation, substantiality and accidentality exist because they are inherent in being as such, and not because it (being) is quantity or subject to movement. In the same way, unity and plurality, identity and opposite, and the like. In this science, we must study the causes inherent in every being, and not only [objects! mathematics or physics. The knowledge of the creator of all things, of his unity and the dependence of all things on him, is also included in this science, and that part of this science that specifically considers this unity is called theology, or divine science. The principles of all sciences are based on this science, and although it is studied at the end, in reality it is the first.

However, we will try to explain it first and try, with the support of the Almighty God, to show skill in order to make it understandable.

Explaining the state of being and extending it to many things and beginning the explanation of the substance

Being is understood by reason without definition and without description, for it has no definition, because it has neither gender nor species, since there is no thing more general than it, and it is not accessible to the description, since there is no thing more famous , than it is. It happens, of course, that the name is recognized in one language and then explained by an explanation of what is meant by this word.

For example, if they call [being] in Arabic, then explain it in Persian, or indicate that this is what the things are for.

Being originally divided into two types: substance and accident.

Accident is the fact that the existence of something depends on something else that is complete and real without it [accident] either in itself, or through anything else, like whiteness in clothes, because it exists by itself or in the things by which it begins to exist (then whiteness is contained in them). Whiteness and everything like it is called accident, and what it takes is called a subject (maudu), although [in logic] this word we understand in a different way.

Yet what is not accidental, and everything that the existence of which does not involve the subject, but, on the contrary, is an entity and something, the existence of which does not involve some thing (which is its receptacle, as we said) there is a substance (jauhar):

1) or it will be a container by itself;

2) or it will be in another container, but not of this kind (like white in clothes); rather, the substance in order to exist in reality needs this thing that accepts it, which will be explained below;

3) or it will not be a container, nor in another container, which will be explained below.

This is called substance. Every container, the existence of which is complete and actual, due to what it takes, is called matter (haiul, maddah), and in Persian (maya), and all that is accepted by this matter is called form.

In accordance with the above, the form is a substance, and not an accident. Why not be a substance? After all, the substance, actually existing by its own essence in sensible things, becomes a substance due to the form, which is the principle of this substance. And how can [the form] be accidental if the accident is secondary to the substance, and not the principle of substance? Consequently, the substance is of four types:

First - Matter as the basis in which, for example, the nature of fire is laid down.

The second is the form as the nature of fire and its nature.

The third is their unity as a fiery "body."

The fourth is, for example, a soul separate from the body, and the mind.

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