عنوان مقاله [English]
Logicians, such as Avicenna (or Ibn Sīnā), give moral propositions (like “injustice is bad” and “justice is good”) as examples of “popular” (mashhūrāt) propositions and praised opinions in the section of dialectics. However, Islamic theologians (those adhering to justice or ‘adliyya) cite these propositions in their discussion of rational goodness and badness. This can be discussed in different respects: Are goodness and badness propositions primitively self-evident propositions or just popular propositions? Are they rational or legislated propositions? Do they admit of truth and falsity? Are they realistic or irrealistic? If they are popular propositions, then can their goodness or badness still be essential? In this paper, we are concerned with this latter question. To begin with, according to passages from Avicenna, these propositions are admittedly popular, but then the question arises of whether this is compatible with their goodness and badness being essential. This is because the essentiality of goodness and badness implies their reality, whereas a merely popular proposition does not have a reality beyond an agreement among rational agents. In the first case, popularity or general interests are at stake, whereas essentiality amounts to being detached from general interests or popularity within the society, in the sense that an act is immediately described as good or bad, but this is at odds with what logicians have suggested. The question of this research is to reveal a conflict between essentiality and rationality of such propositions on the one hand, and their popularity, on the other. We begin with an introduction of epistemological and ontological dimensions of the problem, and then consider the problem in terms of logic, referring to passages from Avicenna in this regard, and after an elucidation of the conflict, we finally formulate Muẓaffar’s solution to the conflict. The idea is that although the popularity of such propositions is incompatible with essentiality or rationality of good and badness as widely understood by theologians, a more refined understanding of essentiality and rationality will help resolve the conflict.