2.2.6 Greek Sources (Supplemental)

Odeon of Herodes Atticus, Athens, Greece. Rohan Travellin, 2007.

An excellent scholarly and free online resource is the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. This article on “Greek Sources in Arabic and Islamic Philosophy” by Christina D’Ancona is more detailed than necessary for this survey, but those who spend time here will be rewarded. Note the extent of deep entanglement between “Medina and Athena,” as another recent Renovatio article by Hamza Yusuf puts it. Also note the impressive bibliography that appears at the end of this entry.





Guiding Questions:

  1. Why were Islamic elites interested in translating texts during the reign of al-Ma’mun, according to the author?
  2. What Qur’anic doctrine did al-Kindi reconcile with Greek philosophy? This is in section three.
  3. In section four the author notes, “The translation of Alexander’s treatises On the Principles of the All and On Intellect helped to shape the metaphysical cosmology and noetics of Medieval Arabic philosophy.” Other major Islamic thinkers were deeply influenced by Aristotle’s Metaphysics. How did al-Farabi use Aristotelian teachings in his understanding of Islamic theology?


Photo: “Odeon of Herodes Atticus, Athens, Greece.” Photo Credit: Rohan Travellin, 2007. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.