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Ghazali (Algazel)
Bornc.1058 C.E. (450 AH)
Died1111 C.E. (505 AH)
EraMedieval era (Islamic golden age)
RegionMuslim Persian scholar
SchoolSufism, Sunni (Shafi'ite), Asharite
Main interests
Sufism, Islamic Theology (Kalam), Islamic Philosophy, Islamic Psychology, Logic, Islamic Law, Islamic Jurisprudence, Cosmology

Abū Ḥāmid Muḥammad ibn Muḥammad al-Ghazālī (1058-1111) (Persian: ابو حامد محمد ابن محمد الغزالی), often Algazel in English, was born and died in Tus, in the Khorasan province of Persia. He was an Islamic theologian, jurist, philosopher, cosmologist, psychologist and mystic of Persian origin,[3][4] and remains one of the most celebrated scholars in the history of Sunni Islamic thought.

He is considered to be a pioneer of the methods of doubt and skepticism, and in one of his major works, The Incoherence of the Philosophers, he changed the course of early Islamic philosophy. He changed the early Islamic philosophy away from an Islamic metaphysics influenced by ancient Greek and Hellenistic philosophy. The new way was towards an Islamic philosophy based on cause-and-effect that was determined by God or intermediate angels, a theory now known as occasionalism.

Legacy[change | change source]

Ghazali has sometimes been celebrated in both the East and the West as the greatest Muslim after Muhammad, according to Montgomery Watt (in his book from 1953).[5]

References[change | change source]

  1. The Influence of Islamic Thought on Maimonides Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, June 30 2005
  2. Muslim Philosophy Archived 2007-09-28 at the Wayback Machine, Islamic Contributions to Science & Math,
  3. "Ghazali". The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition 2006. Archived from the original on 2008-10-11. Retrieved 2009-09-11.
  4. "ḠAZĀLĪ entry in Encyclopædia Iranica". Böwering, Gerhard. Retrieved 2009-11-09.
  5. Montgomery Watt (1953). The Faith and Practice of Al-Ghazali. London: George Allen and Unwin Ltd. p. 14.