Al-Ash'ari's discussion of the philosophical problem of free will and predestination

Bin Hussain, Mohammed Yusoff (1979) Al-Ash'ari's discussion of the philosophical problem of free will and predestination. MLitt(R) thesis, University of Glasgow.

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"Al-Ash'ari's Discussion of the Philosophical Problem of Free Will and Predestination" is designed to explore the discussion of one of the controversial issues in Islamic theology and philosophy. The problem of Free Will and Predestination, without doubt, poses contradictory positions in Islamic thought. The upholders of the concept of Free Will will surely' be able to maintain the justice of God, but will face the problem of the absoluteness of God. Whereas, the upholders of the concept of Predestination will surely be able to establish the sovereignty of God but will face the problem of the justice of God. The important question emerging from this contradiction is that of the human share of responsibility for what has been done. It is to be believed that man will be punished in the life hereafter for his wrong doings and he will be rewarded for his good works. This study will try to introduce one of the solutions given by a medieval Muslim scholar, al-Ash'ari, who was trying to reconcile these contradictory positions through a theory which he developed, that is, 'the theory of acquisition'. The study is presented by producing various chapters which are relevant to the problem concerned and under which this problem is treated. Through this study, we shall not only discuss al-Ash'ari's arguments and positions, but we shall also see the comparison between al-Ash'ari and various scholars from the upholders of Free Will (the Mu'tazilites) as well as the upholders of Predestination (the Jabarites). In the introduction to the study, we shall introduce al-Ash'ari as an orthodox middle path scholar who valued highly the use of philosophical arguments, but in addition, prized even highly the revelation of the Holy Book, al-Qur'an. Al-Ash'ari was at first a follower of the Mu'tazilites, but finally turned to orthodoxy. This study will only touch on al-Ash'ari's position when he became the orthodox middle path scholar. The remaining five chapters will directly deal with the problem of Free Will and Predestination. Through this theory and with the help of the previous discussions, al-Ash'ari claims that the concept of the human share of responsibility is not inconsistent with the concept of the foreknowledge of God, God's omnipotence and the concept of God's Will. Finally, it is hoped that this study will give an introduction to the study of al-Ash'ari's ideas in the circle of Islamic thought. (Abstract shortened by ProQuest.).

Item Type: Thesis (MLitt(R))
Qualification Level: Masters
Additional Information: Adviser: A Alistair Kee
Keywords: Philosophy of Religion, Islamic studies
Date of Award: 1979
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:1979-72396
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 24 May 2019 15:12
Last Modified: 24 May 2019 15:12

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