Frasi di Ibn Khaldun

Ibn Khaldun foto
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Ibn Khaldun

Data di nascita: 4. Giugno 1332
Data di morte: 19. Marzo 1406

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Ibn Khaldūn, il cui nome completo è Walī al-Dīn ʿAbd al-Raḥmān ibn Muḥammad ibn Muḥammad ibn Abī Bakr Muḥammad ibn al-Ḥasan al-Ḥaḍramī, in arabo: ولي الدين عبد الرحمن بن محمد بن محمد بن أبي بكر محمد بن الحسن الحضرمي‎ , è stato il massimo storico e filosofo del Maghreb, e viene considerato un sociologo ante litteram delle società araba, berbera e persiana. È uno dei padri fondatori della storiografia e della sociologia, ed è considerato uno dei primi economisti..

Ha introdotto la nozione di "storia ciclica", fondata su fattori profani generati dalla naturale tendenza ad indebolirsi delle generazioni sedentarizzate, eredi dei conquistatori nomadi, trascinate però in una progressiva e inesorabile decadenza ad opera della ricchezza e dal modo di vita urbano. Molto apprezzato in Occidente per la modernità delle sue concezioni.

L'attività principale di Ibn Khaldūn fu quella di uomo politico, cortigiano e ministro, al servizio uno dopo l'altro degli Hafsidi tunisini, dei Merinidi del Marocco, degli Zayyanidi di Tlemcen, dei Nasridi del Sultanato di Granada e dei Mamelucchi burji d'Egitto. Fu anche ambasciatore presso il re di Castiglia, Pietro I di Castiglia, detto Pietro il Crudele, e presso il temibile Timur Lang . Ebbe così la possibilità di conoscere da vicino e porre a confronto tra loro i diversi modi di esercitare il potere, misurandone la precarietà.

I diversi sovrani, impressionati dalle sue grandi capacità e dalla sua grande cultura, gli perdonarono a più riprese la sua versatilità e i suoi tradimenti.

Frasi Ibn Khaldun

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„(Unlike Muslims), the other religious groups did not have a universal mission, and the holy war was not a religious duty to them, save only for purposes of defence... They are merely required to establish their religion among their own people. This is why the Israelites after Moses and Joshua remained unconcerned with royal authority for about four hundred years. Their only concern was to establish their religion... The Israelites dispossessed the Canaanites of the land that God had given them as their heritage in Jerusalem and the surrounding region, as it had been explained to them through Moses. The nations of the Philistines, the Canaanites, the Armenians, the Edomites, the Ammonites, and the Moabites fought against them. During that time political leadership was entrusted to the elders among them. The Israelites remained in that condition for about four hundred years. They did not have any royal power and were harassed by attacks from foreign nations. Therefore, they asked God through Samuel, one of their prophets, that he permit them to make someone king over them. Thus, Saul became their king. He defeated the foreign nations and killed Goliath, the ruler of Philistines. After Saul, w:David became king, and then Solomon. His kingdom flourished and extended to the borders of the land of the Hijaz and further to the borders of Yemen and to the borders of the land of the Byzantines. After Solomon, the tribes split into two dynasties. One of the dysnaties was that of the ten tribes in the region of Nablus, the capital of which is Samaria(Sabastiyah), and the other that of the children of Judah and Benjamin in Jerusalem. Their royal authority had had an uninterrupted duration of a thousand years.“

— Ibn Khaldun
Muqaddimah, Translated by Franz Rosenthal, pp.183-184, Princeton University Press, 1981.

„Arabic writing at the beginning of Islam was, therefore, not of the best quality nor of the greatest accuracy and excellence. It was not (even) of medium quality, because the Arabs possessed the savage desert attitude and were not familiar with crafts. One may compare what happened to the orthography of the Qur’an on account of this situation. The men around Muhammad wrote the Qur’an in their own script which, was not of a firmly established, good quality. Most of the letters were in contradiction to the orthography required by persons versed in the craft of writing.... Consequently, (the Qur’anic orthography of the men around Muhammad was followed and became established, and the scholars acquainted with it have called attention to passages where (this is noticeable). No attention should be paid in this connection with those incompetent (scholars) that (the men around Muhammad) knew well the art of writing and that the alleged discrepancies between their writing and the principles of orthography are not discrepancies, as has been alleged, but have a reason. For instance, they explain the addition of the alif in la ‘adhbahannahU "I shall indeed slaughter him" as indication that the slaughtering did not take place ( lA ‘adhbahannahU ). The addition of the ya in bi-ayydin "with hands (power)," they explain as an indication that the divine power is perfect. There are similar things based on nothing but purely arbitrary assumptions. The only reason that caused them to (assume such things) is their belief that (their explanations) would free the men around Muhammad from the suspicion of deficiency, in the sense that they were not able to write well. They think that good writing is perfection. Thus, they do not admit the fact that the men around Muhammad were deficient in writing.“

— Ibn Khaldun
Muqqadimah, ibn Khaldun, vol. 2, p. 382

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