عنوان مقاله [English]
Throughout the history of human thought, the question of innate inclinations (fiṭrat) has given rise to many debates. Regarding its significance, it needs to be said that the question is the cornerstone and substance of moral psychology, such that if we eliminate it from discussions about moral psychology, the whole building of the knowledge will collapse. Hence knowledge about innate inclinations is the mother of knowledge about human questions.
There are two theories on whether or not human beings have innate inclinations. According to the first, there is no such thing as an innate inclination in human beings, human nature at birth being like an empty and shapeless container taking the shape of whatever society pours into it. According to the second theory, human nature is not like an empty container, but, rather, there are needs and inclinations in human beings on the basis of which they live and these needs and inclinations are realized if put in favorable conditions.
In this article, we study viewpoints on innate inclinations of famous mystic Rumi and contemporary thinker Morteza Motahhari, both belonging to the area of philosophical and mystic thought in Islam. The article’s main point is that the idea of the innate in the thoughts of both of the great men was inspired by the religion of Islam, and that they believed in a divine origin for the innate, as well as in the fact that human existence is a battle field for the innate against carnal and sensual forces. Hence human beings always struggle with their material dependencies, longing for return to their divine origins, and they will calm down only when set free from the snare of their whims and material dependencies and when they return to their divine innate inclinations. In spite of the commonalities in their premises (Islamic teachings), each of these two thinkers has adopted different methods. Rumi has benefited from visionary and intuitive methods as well as from exegesis, and Motahhari has benefited from philosophical and argumentative methods. Interestingly, however, they have drawn same conclusions. Motahhari’s theory is more meticulous than Rumi’s and has analytic categorizations, which is typical of philosophical method. Both of them had detailed meditations on innate inclinations, and the comparison between them is worthwhile because it shows what use these thoughts have and that their main points and origins are Islamic teachings.
This article has discussed, first, the significance of moral psychology, especially in the modern world, and then the significance and status of innate inclinations in human existence. The term fiṭrat was differentiated from instinct and other natural affairs and its distinctive features were presented, citing the verse 30 of Chapter al-Rum in the Qur’an.
The conclusion from the examination and analysis of Rumi’s Masnavi is that by invoking Koranic verses he describes human beings as having two divine and corporeal aspects. Citing the verse of Covenant, he says that human beings have their origins in their divine innate inclinations, and depicts an eternal relation with God which is metaphorically described in the poems of his Masnavi as a reed bed, associating the separation from the world of fiṭrat with lack, despair, and confusion in this earthly world. In his In It There is What Is In It (Fi hi Ma Fi h), Rumi regards individuals as enjoying varying degrees of knowledge about God, and prophets and those who are close to God as people who can draw aside the material veil and through their hearts become connected to God and aware of his being. In every tale of Masnavi human beings’ clean, and ugly and hideous faces are depicted and all human beings struggle between the opposites, and as long as they have not returned to their clean and original innate inclinations they do not feel excellence and triumph. Here, there is a serious distinction between Rumi and other mystics: the latter basically consider the human soul as deplorable and human beings as debased, spoiled, and aggressive. They did not see in humans anything but brutality and atrocity, which is why they tried to suppress inclinations and carnalities, whereas Rumi believed in the high status of human beings and the spiritual aspect of their existence and their connection with the divine world, and sought to show how this part of human beings can overcome their material aspects.
In Motahhari, fiṭrat is used with two specific and general meanings. He thinks that all innate affairs in the general meaning have their origins in divine innate inclinations. Ultimately, he introduces only one authentic fiṭrat which is absolute perfection. Since human beings are always seeking perfection and any perfection comes with a flaw, the only perfection towards which human innate inclinations can be directed is the perfection above which there is not any perfection. Because in this small material world that perfection cannot be achieved, human beings keep feeling disenchantment and restlessness. Motahhari thinks of human perfection-seeking innate inclination as having varying degrees, and that there are factors affecting its realization, the most important of which are prophets. Prophets can save not only human beings who are distanced from their fiṭrat but also those who are suffering from the metamorphosis of their fiṭrat, which was what motivated Moses to go to Pharaoh: innate inclinations are not destroyed, therefore, there is room for the hope that human beings will return to their fiṭrat. Motahhari considers human beings as involved with two existential aspects, heavenly and earthly, and believes that they will triumph only when they rein in their soul and make it subject to their true self.
Citing Koranic verses, both Rumi and Motahhari as Islamic thinkers regard human existence as two-sided: innate affairs have their origins in the spiritual aspect and instinctive tendencies in the corporeal aspect. Invoking the verse of Covenant they both see the knowledge about God as innate and dating back from before creation of human beings. Furthermore, human beings’ distance from their origin and their imprisonment in the small material world has caused human distress, sadness and grief. Another point is the conflict between two human existential forces namely innate and sensual forces, deriving from two-sidedness of human existence. And human beings will triumph if they make their desires subject to the transcendent aspect of their existence. To convey his meaning, Motahhari sometimes uses couplets composed by Rumi. Referring to the significant role of prophets in precluding deviation from fiṭrat and placing human beings in the course of their human nature are among other commonalities between these two great men.
33 .واعظی،احمد (1394) انسان از دیدگاه اسلام، تهران: انتشارات سمت.