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Concept of Wisdom in the Qur’ān

  • M. Ashraf Adeel
Chapter
Part of the Sophia Studies in Cross-cultural Philosophy of Traditions and Cultures book series (SCPT, volume 29)

Abstract

This chapter examines those verses of the Qur’ān which talk about ḥik’mat or wisdom. It is argued that elements of wisdom for the Qur’ān are knowledge, understanding, and best possible ways to argue, as they combine to lead us to overall righteousness. For the Qur’ān wisdom is some form of knowledge and understanding that produce comprehensive righteousness in one’s life. It is a virtuous state that the Qur’ān takes to be a product of knowledge and understanding but also involves best possible argument or reasoning. Wisdom looks like an epistemic or cognitive state, but a state that produces overall righteousness or virtue; hence it might be taken as both a cognitive state and an acquired disposition or virtue. It is noted that understanding as it reflects upon itself to sharpen our taqwā (or epistemic and moral conscience) produces wisdom in us. It strengthens our conscience for living well. This position is elaborated through noting some linkages between episteme and wisdom in Plato and Aristotle as well as through the views of contemporary writers like Sharon Ryan and Jason Baehr.

Keywords

Wisdom Overall righteousness taqwā episteme 

References

  1. Baehr, Jason. 2014. Sophia: Theoretical Wisdom and Contemporary Epistemology. In Virtues and Their Vices, ed. Kevin Timpe and Craig A. Boyd. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Guthrie, W.K.C. 1975. A History of Greek Philosophy: IV, Plato: The Man and His Dialogues Early Period. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Moline, Jon. 1981. Plato’s Theory of Understanding. Madison/London: Wisconsin University Press.Google Scholar
  4. Prior, William J. 1998. Plato and the “Socratic Fallacy.” Phronesis 43 (2): 107.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Ryan, Sharon. 2012. Wisdom, Knowledge, and Rationality. Acta Analytica 27 (2): 99–112.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Zagzebsky, Linda. 2012. Recovering Understanding. Reprinted in Virtue Epistemology: Contemporary Readings, ed. John Greco and John Turri, 354–355. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Ashraf Adeel
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyKutztown University of PennsylvaniaKutztownUSA

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