Arguing Soul through Poetry: Samarqandī’s Epistemological Resolution between Ibn Sīnā and Rāzī

Yavuz A. F.

After Avicenna, Jyvaskyla, Finland, 2 - 03 June 2021, pp.1

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Summary Text
  • City: Jyvaskyla
  • Country: Finland
  • Page Numbers: pp.1
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Arguments on the soul (nafs) convey the primary quest of epistemology: the knowing-self. Thus, debates on perception, knowledge and soul, as well following approaches in logic form the outlines of an epistemological framework in philosophical works. However, one of unusual cases regarding this debate can be observed in Samarqandī’s (d. 722/1322) Qasīdah al-Qāfiyyah in response to Ibn Sīnā’s Qasīdah al-‘Ayniyyah where he addresses the problem also by composing a structurally similar versification. This paper tends, firstly, to revisit the reception of this qasīdah focusing on Samarqandī’s correspondence and to restore the prominence of this unique philosophical debate on the soul by means of poetry. Secondly, it aims to analyse his efforts to reconcile Avicennian and Rāzīan theories on the soul by also utilising two of his major works: al-Ma‘ārif fī Sharḥ al-Ṣaḥā’if and ‘Ilm al-Afāq wa’l-Anfus.