فارسی
Rubaiyat

Awake! for morningin the bowl of night
 
Has flung the Stone that puts the Stars to Flight:
 
 And Lo! the Hunter of the East has caught
 
 The Sultan's Turret in a Noose of Light.

philosophy

Khayyam wrote little, but his works—some fourteen treatises identified to date—were remarkable. They can be categorized primarily in three genres:

mathematics, philosophy, and poetry. His philosophical works which have been edited and published recently are:

“A Translation of Ibn Sīnā's (Avicenna's) Lucid Discourse” (Khutbah al-ghurra’ Ibn Sīnā) (Aminrazavi, 2007, 303–317.)

“On Being and Necessity” (Risālah fī’l-kawn wa'l-taklīf) (Aminrazavi, 2007, 321-342 )

“On the Necessity of Contradiction in the World, Determinism and Subsistence” (Ḍarurat al-taḍād fi'l-‘ālam wa'l-jabr wa'l-baqā’) (Aminrazavi, 2007, 344-368 )

“The Light of the Intellect on the Subject of Universal Knowledge” (Risālah al-ḍiyā’ al-‘aqlī fī mawḍū‘ al-‘ilm al-kullī) . This treatise has also been called “The Treatise on Transcendence in Existence” (Al-Risālah al-ūlā fi'l-wujūd).

“On the Knowledge of the Universals Principles of Existence” (Risālah dar ‘ilm kulliyāt-i wujūd).

“On Existence” (Risālah fi'l-wujūd)

“Response to Three Philosophical Problems” (Risālah jawābān līthulth masā’il) (Mālik (ed.). 412–422 )

Except the first work mentioned above which is a free translation and commentary on a discourse by Ibn Sīnā, the other six philosophical treatises represent Khayyam's own independent philosophical views. It is noteworthy that Khayyam's philosophical treatises were written in the Peripatetic tradition at a time when philosophy in general and rationalism in particular was under attack by orthodox Muslim jurists—so much that Khayyam had to defend himself against the charge of “being a philosopher.”


“A philosopher I am,” my enemies falsely say,
But God knows I am not what they say;
While in this sorrow-laden nook, I reside
Need to know who I am, and why Here stay.

 (translation by the author.)

In “On Being and Necessity”, Khayyam defines “philosophy” along the Peripatetic line: “The essential and real issues that are discussed in philosophy are three, [first], ‘is it?’…second, ‘what is it?’…third, ‘why is it?’” (Mālik (ed.), 335).

While these are standard Aristotelian questions, for Khayyam they have a wider range of philosophical implications, especially with regard to the following topics:


The existence of God, His attributes and knowledge
Gradation of being and the problem of multiplicity
Eschatology
Theodicy
Determinism and free will
Subjects and predicates
Existence and essence

 
 
Khayyam Scholar
 
2018 November
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