By Seyyed Hossein Nasr, Mehdi Aminrazavi
The culture of philosophy within the Persian-speaking global is awfully wealthy, artistic and numerous. This anthology, that is divided into 3 volumes, goals to speak anything of that richness and variety. The time period "philosophy" is known to in its widest feel to incorporate theological debate, philosophical Sufism and philosophical hermeneutics (ta'wil). Extending over a interval of greater than millennia, and showcasing translations by means of well-established students, the anthology deals complete bibliographical references all through. For someone drawn to exploring, in all their various manifestations, the interesting philosophical traditions of Persia, this type of wide-ranging and impressive paintings may be an integral source. quantity 2 covers 5 centuries of Ismaili philosophy, and comprises extracts from remarkable Ismaili works together with the Rasa'il Ikhwan al-Safa (Treatises of the Brethren of Purity) and the philosophical odes of Nasir Khusraw. it's of serious importance that, within the early centuries of Islam, philosophers have been encouraged by means of Pythagorean and airtight principles, that are frequently linked to Shi'i suggestion more often than not and Ismailism specifically. Ismaili philosophy at the present used to be capable of combine strands of Greco-Alexandrian idea reminiscent of Hermeticism and Neo-Pythagoreanism, in addition to features of Mazdaeism and Manichaeism. It additionally confirmed marked curiosity in Neo-Platonism.
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Extra info for An Anthology of Philosophy in Persia, Volume 2: Ismaili Thought in the Classical Age
Bāqir replied, ‘Alif [corresponds to] the Spirit [whose seat is] the brain. It is called the Spirit of Faith (rūḥ-i īmān) and is above the Vital Conscious Spirit (rūḥ al-ḥayāt-i nāṭiqah). It testifies to eight other Spirits which are above it and are interconnected within the Spirit of Faith which englobes [everything] from the earth to the heaven. The first one is the Spirit of Preservation (rūḥ-i ḥifẓ) of the Guarded Tablet of the Exalted King. It is concealed within the Spirit of Faith.  The next one is the Spirit of Reflection (rūḥ-i fikr) of the Pen of the [Guarded] Tablet.
There he put his foot on the rock, and from there he crossed the seven heavens and reached at ‘two bows’-length’. From there he ascended to the throne, then to the Pedestal, Tablet, and Pen and then he crossed five thousand veils and reached in the presence of the Exalted King where he spoke and listened to ninety thousand words. Then he returned to his house. Umm al-kitāb 27 His bed was still warm. The news [of his ascension] spread among the Arabs  who did not believe it. [Its interpretation:] The Sublime Spirit sent the revelation to the heart of Muḥammad, that means to the heart of the believer.
An extraordinary number of colours are displayed to symbolize different theurgies and the corresponding levels of consciousness that man must realize within himself. This text, which remains part of the corpus of the Central Asian Ismaili literature to this day, is held in high esteem particularly by the Nizārī Ismaili communities 16 Umm al-kitāb 17 living in Afghanistan, Tajikistan and northern areas of Pakistan and more generally in the Pamir range. The selection deals primarily with the subject of man and the esoteric and philosophical significance of the Qurʾān and the symbolic significance of worship in Islam.
An Anthology of Philosophy in Persia, Volume 2: Ismaili Thought in the Classical Age by Seyyed Hossein Nasr, Mehdi Aminrazavi