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Distributed for Brigham Young University

Abu Hatim al-Razi: The Proofs of Prophecy

A Parallel Arabic-English Text

Translated, Introduced, and Annotated by Tarif Khalidi
This book is the record of a debate that took place in the early tenth century between the famous Ismaili missionary Abu Hatim al-Razi and the even more celebrated Abu Bakr al-Razi , a physician and philosopher who was known to medieval Europe as “Rhazes.” These two were towering figures of premodern Islamic thought, and their debate over the dogmatic lines between Sunni and Shi’i theological positions serves to illuminate some of the most intellectually exciting topics of medieval Islamic culture. Abu Hatim, in particular, marshals evidence for his position from the Quran, the hadith, and pre-Islamic Arabic poetry as well as from the Jewish and Christian scriptures. This fresh, vivid debate still holds excitement for modern readers who are interested not merely in medieval Islam but in Christian thought as well.

400 pages | 6 x 9 | © 2012

Brigham Young University - Islamic Translation Series

Religion: Islam

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The Proofs of Prophecy is an important contribution to the burgeoning body works in Islamic intellectual history, and as such, it would be of interest to both students and scholars of Islamic philosophy and comparative religion.”

Ilahiyat Studies

Table of Contents

Foreword to the Series
Notes on Conventions
Translator’s Introduction

Part One
Chapter One: An account of what transpired between me and the heretic
Chapter Two: Concerning the Five Eternals and the debate over imitation and independent investigation
Chapter Three: Concerning his argument that the five are eternal, with no other eternal except them, and the debate about time and space
Chapter Four: That the world is created
Part Two
Chapter One: [On reason, religion, and imitation]
Chapter Two: Returning to the subject of rational investigation and inquiry
Chapter Three: A discussion of the phrase "profound reflection"
Chapter Four: A discussion of contradiction
Chapter Five: That when believers in religious law are asked for proof, they become abusive
Chapter Six: His saying, "They are deceived by the imposing beards of these jackasses"
Chapter Seven: His statement that the truth is buried very deep and falls totally silent
Chapter Eight: His statement concerning feeble-minded men and women
Part Three
Chapter One: Regarding his statement, "We shall now examine the speech of these people and its contradictory nature"
Chapter Two: The Prophet’s demeanor and virtues
Chapter Three: Concerning the speech of prophets and their laws
Chapter Four: Concerning parable and meaning
Chapter Five: Concerning what the heretic stated that is in the Torah
Part Four
Chapter One: A brief discussion regarding differences among so-called philosophers and the contradictions in their speech
Chapter Two: Conflict among philosophers regarding principles
Chapter Three: A summary of divergences among views of philosophers
Chapter Four: Which of the two groups is more deceitful?
Chapter Five: There is no divergence among prophets regarding principles
Chapter Six: All religious laws are true, but falsehood has been mixed with them
Part Five
Chapter One: Further views of the heretic
Chapter Two: On oppression and victory
Chapter Three: The difference between miracles and signs
Chapter Four: The mention of the signs of Muḥammad in revealed books
Chapter Five: The signs of Muḥammad in Islam
Part Six
On the matter of the Qur’ān
Part Seven
Chapter One: Prophets as originators of the sciences and testators of philosophers
Chapter Two: The origin of the stars and of astronomical observations
Chapter Three: The origin of the science of pharmacology
Chapter Four: Every knowledge stems from the First Sage

Notes to the English Text
Glossary and Index
Index of Scripture Verses

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