Critique of Interpretation of Human Final Perfection: a Critical Study

Document Type : Research Paper




Theistic philosophers have special view on human nature. They define it in terms of rational faculty and thus regard human final perfection and ultimate felicity dependent on the activity of this faculty and actualization of it. There are philosophers, such as Plato, Plotinus, and Zakariya al-Razi (Rhazes), who maintain explicitly that human felicity is based on his becoming philosopher. Other philosophers, including Farabi, Ibn Sina (Avicenna), Suhrawardi, and Mulla Sadra, who define human felicity in terms of acts of theoretical reason and activity in accordance with it, attempt to describe the felicity of those who fail to attain the status of traditional philosopher in following and believing in holy Prophets - the true “Philosophers” par excellence in the strict sense of the term. According to these analyses, if philosophy is taken in its broad meaning which includes both conceptual and intuitive knowledge, one can say that human felicity lies partly in philosophy.  Human felicity, however, is not restricted in it, since existential dimensions of human being is not confined to reason. Nor is this stage of felicity attainable for the masses at large. So these analyses are not completely acceptable. The bodily resurrection and physical pleasures and pains, which are clearly understood from holy Quranic verses and hadiths, show the shortcomings of philosophers’ analysis of final felicity of human being.