Islam and Science; the intellectual career of Niẓām al-Dīn al-Nīsābūrī By
 Robert G. Morrison
Publisher Routledge Pub Date 2007 Pub Location None Isbn 9780415772341 Course(s)


Islam and Science: The Intellectual Career of Niẓām al-Dīn al-Nīsābūrī (D.C. 1330), a Shiite scholar of the Qur’ān, astronomy, kalām (Islamic theology), and fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence) investigates the relationship between religion and science in pre-modern Islamic civilization. Nīsābūrī lived and worked at the nexus of seminal developments in both science and religious studies. This book breaks new ground in the study of the relationship between science and religion in pre-modern Islamic civilization because I examine in detail the relationship between the metaphysics of Nīsābūrī’s science and statements he made in his Qur’ān commentary. The book uses a diachronic approach, to the extent that the sources allow, to argue that Nīsābūrī began his scientific career due to the inclusion of basic science in a religious (madrasa) education. By mid-career, he had become attuned to the methodological similarities between theoretical astronomy and Islamic jurisprudence. I carefully read his Qur’ān commentary to show that his scientific work affected the way he understood the Qur’ān’s statements about God’s power. The book concludes that while Nīsābūrī believed that science could give one a taste of God’s knowledge, the study of science and natural philosophy alone could not lead to a spiritual union with God. Only ṣūfī practice and ṣūfī theory could accomplish that.