The Ikhwân al-Safâ’ or “Brethren of Purity”, as their name is commonly translated, are the authors of one of the most complete Medieval. The Ikhwan al-Safa’ (Brethren of Purity) were the anonymous adepts of a tenth- century esoteric fraternity of lettered urbanites that was principally based in Basra . The philosophy of the group of Arab philosophers of the fourth or fifth century ah ( tenth or eleventh century ad) known as the Ikhwan al-Safa’ (Brethren of Purity).

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The most convincing hypothesis seems to be that which links the name to the content and goals of the encyclopedia — the salvation of soul through attainment of knowledge and purification of heart Diwald16— For them, learning was much more than mere recollection or reminiscence. Further perplexities abound; the use of pronouns for the authorial “sender” of the rasa’il is not consistent, with the writer occasionally slipping from third person to first-person for example, in Epistle 44, “The Doctrine of the Sincere Brethren”.

God is the most beloved as the everlasting cause of all beings. All subsequent emanations tend to be more and more material and defective. There is also a hint at the doctrine of reminiscence, that is seldom mentioned in Muslim sources; cf.

Chapter Ikhwan al-Safa | A History of Muslim Philosophy Volume 1, Book 3 |

It is, however, the Neoplatonic elements which dominate the articulation of all thought in the writings of the Ikhwan al-Safa’ and their metaphysics are no exception. But through our senses we acquire only the material changes immediately apprehended by us and occurring in space and time. It receives its energy from the intellect. The incorporation of philosophical and theological doctrines in their writings were done teleogically. We know from the epistles themselves that the authors urged their brothers to meet specially at set times, in closed sessions.


It is either soothing or exciting, gratifying or grieving. In these squares are inserted the numbers 1 to 9 in a manner that any row, horizontal, perpendicular, or diagonal, must give the uniform sum of Wikimedia Commons has media related to Brethren of Sincerity.

Ikhwan al-Safa’

McGregorthen Epistle 5: We recognize here a description akin to Aristotle’s usage of the word ‘substance’ in the Metaphysics. If aerial moisture mixes with earth, it becomes mercury, a masculine element; if oily moisture mixes with earth, it changes into sulphur, a feminine element.

La philosophie des Ihwan al-Safa’. The work does profess to contain a systematizedharmonious and co-ordinated view of the universe and life, its origin and destiny, formed out of many discordant, incoherent views; and it does claim to be a ‘complete account of all things’ – to contain, in epitome, all that was known at the time it was written. The authors’ view of embryology Epistle 25 is also a collection from different sources.

Jabir et la science grecqueParis: And in spite of the fact that the data stored in the brain fade gradually, and that some of them are sometimes totally forgotten, they do not annul one another. Not all Pythagorean doctrines were followed, however.

Chapter 15: Ikhwan al-Safa

Rather, sciences explain the underlying reality of the ikhwwan and so allow rational understanding of the contents of Revelation and of religious Law. Organizationally, it is divided into 52 epistles. It serves to confirm the love human beings feel for permanence and their hatred for death: Some people attributed to an Alid Imam, proffering various names, whereas other put forward as author some early Mutazilite theologians.


Metaphysics If metaphysics did not include theology, it would have interested them very little. The next stage of development was mineral life. As for other relatives of his servants, and dependants, he should be bounteous in their maintenance and meek in their treatment.

We are concerned with the soul assigned to a man which is the least unlucky of all the falling souls. Abu Sulaiman Muhammed b. The contexts of such passages are interpreted differently by scholars.

Socrates is admired as a great and wise philosopher who knew how to meet death bravely. When an individual soul is caused to fall, it may be lucky enough to realize its mistake and repent readily.

Ikhwan al-Safa’

Yet Central in their Influence: First, the Ikhwan acknowledged the existence of “sciences and wisdoms,” some divinely inspired, which had been safq by past faith communities, individuals, and learned societies.

The early Greek thinkers conceived of the universe as one living being in which the phenomena and powers ax correlated and governed hierarchically by a single general law. Such an agenda of reform was founded on three assumptions. For example, ikuwan Ikhwan held in one place that substance was something which was self-existent and capable of receiving attributes.

He charged him with the mission as was necessary and asked him to keep his identity concealed. In the Ikhwan doctrine there are similarities between that and the theory of evolution. Macmillan Publishing Company, Everything begins from Him and everything returns to Him.

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