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History and Systems of Psychology

PSYCHOLOGY IN THE 5TH TO 12TH CENTURY:Al-Ghazali, Ibn-Rushd, Averroes

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History and Systems of Psychology ­ PSY502
VU
Lesson 05
PSYCHOLOGY IN THE 5TH TO 12TH CENTURY
Al-Ghazali
Al-Ghazali was a great philosopher/psychologist. His ideas hold a unique position in the
development of philosophy/psychology. Al-Ghazali was born in 1058AD and died in 1111AD. He studied
Greek philosophy gaining mastery over it, and then studied religion and acquired a vast knowledge on that
as well. Having a thorough knowledge of the subjects led Al-Ghazali to see a conflict between religion and
philosophy. This conflict could only been seen by someone who had a vast knowledge of both the fields
such as Al-Ghazali. The conclusion he drew, created so much stress and affected him so badly that he
became physically ill. He continued his study for more than ten years and after much reflection on the
subject, he was able to resolve the conflict for himself. He then gradually started to recover from his bad
health.
Al-Ghazali had a unique idea about the soul of human beings. He taught that the soul was like God
and said that "Allah has breathed His own spirit into man." This entailed the soul being a higher expression
of man's existence. Therefore, Al-Ghazali also differed from Aristotle on the concept of unity of body and
soul.
Another contribution of Al-Ghazali is that he distinguished between positive and negative virtues.
In his views:
·
Positive virtue is doing a good deed. For example if someone helps the poor that would be a
positive virtue.
·
And negative virtue is to avoid a bad deed. For example person avoids indulging into a criminal
act.
Related to his idea of the soul being the higher expression of man's existence, Al-Ghazali also
distinguished between three stages of being which are:
·
Lowest, the material world of existence
·
The second is the physical world
·
The third is the world of divine.
Al-Ghazali also gave a long list of vices such as hunger, sex, vice of speech, self assertion, love of wealth
and hypocrisy. The vices of hunger and sex are physical needs. The vice of speech is to use bad words or to
say such words which would harm someone. Another vice described by Al-Ghazali was a unique idea of self
assertion which means that being over assertive and trying to dominate others and not listening to what they
have to say. That is over asserting one's own beliefs and thoughts. The next is the vice of love of wealth.
According to Al-Ghazali like all other vices it makes a person forget about all moralities and values and he
pursue his desires blindly. The last vice described by Al-Ghazali is the vice of hypocrisy which means that a
person appears differently from what he actually is.
Al-Ghazali also described four kinds of love:
·
Self love
·
Love of a benefactor
·
Love of beauty
·
Love of harmonious interaction.
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History and Systems of Psychology ­ PSY502
VU
Self love is the love that an individual has for himself while the love for a benefactor is the love that an
individual has for some one who takes care of his needs. For example the love for one's parents is the love
for a benefactor. Third is the love for beauty which is possessed by every individual. Man has innate sense
to love and admire beauty. This has been identified by Al-Ghazali. Last is the love for harmonious
interaction which is the love for association with people. It is another of man's instincts which has been
identified by Al-Ghazali.
One of Al-Ghazali's greatest contributions is that he proposed two kinds of selves:
·
Nafsay-Ammarah; the primitive self or the negative, bad self
·
And Nafsay-Mutminah; the satisfied self or positive good self.
Nafsay-Ammarah is original state of self in which man is dissatisfied. Nafsay-Mutminah is the satisfied self
when the individual has achieved his potentials and desires and gotten rid of the bad self.
According to Al-Ghazali, man can change and improve himself from Nafsay-Ammarah to Nafsay-
Mutiminah by doing the right things which according to him are six:
·
Masharaqa
This means to put oneself straight. When the person decides that he would change himself and
do those things only which are right or which are deemed right by the society.
·
Maraqaba
This means to guard oneself from evil and bad things.
·
Mahasaba
This means to criticize oneself for anything which is not good, which would ultimately lead to
the improvement of that habit or doing.
·
Maaqaba
This means to punish the self for the wrong doing and forcefully restraining the self from it.
·
Mujahida
This means to express the self in fully and properly and not keep anything hidden.
·
Maataba
This means to cleanse oneself of any bad deed or doing.
In view of these ways of self discipline Ghazali is considered by many as a psychotherapist.
Ibn-Rushd, Averroes
Averroes is regarded as one of the greatest philosopher/psychologist of the Middle Ages. He is also
known as Ibn-Rushd in Urdu. He was born in 1126AD and he died in 1198AD. Unlike some of the
previous philosopher/psychologists, he followed the Aristotelian tradition of observation and empiricism
and based his ideas upon logic, far removed from speculation and Socratic and Platonian way of gaining
knowledge by insight.
Averroes's views were different from that of Al-Ghazali and he held the view that soul is not
spiritual but material and mortal. He further stated that soul does not survive at death. Therefore he rejected
and ancient view of the soul being eternal and the body being mortal. That is what Socrates used as a basis
for his method of gaining knowledge by insight.
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History and Systems of Psychology ­ PSY502
VU
Averroes divided soul into five categories:
1. Nutritive
The nutritive part of the soul is responsible for the growth and development.
2. Sensitive
The sensitive part of the soul is responsible for emotions and feelings.
3. Imaginative
The imaginative part of the soul is responsible for the thinking process of the individual.
4. Cognitive
This part is responsible for association of ideas and for the process of solving problems.
5. Appetitive
This part of the soul is responsible for bodily needs such as hunger thirst etc.
Averroes taught that animals gain knowledge by sense organs, whereas man does it by intellect and
knowledge gathered by intellect is the true and correct knowledge. Therefore his method of gaining
knowledge was a combination of the Socratic and the Aristotelian tradition where Socrates thought that
sensory organs were a hindrance to the acquisition of knowledge while Aristotle was of the view that
knowledge needs to be gathered through empiricism rather than looking inwards.
Averroes further asserted that when a change occurs in the world, knowledge also changes.
Therefore, knowledge is in a constant flux. Hence, man needs to constantly update his knowledge.
Averroes was of the opinion that all events have causes and denial of causes is denial of knowledge.
This is known as determinism. He concluded that knowledge could therefore be gained by looking at causes
of objects and events. In light of this theory, even accidents which apparently do not have a cause actually
have a cause. For example a car colliding into a tree has apparently no cause, but there has to be a cause for
the accident in the view of Averroes. The cause therefore may be that the car was being driven at a high
speed or the steering wheel was turned in the wrong direction.
Averroes practiced the Aristotelian way of observation and rejected speculation as a way of
acquiring knowledge avoiding unnecessary speculation even in religious matters. Later Europeans adopted
Averroes's ideas and rejected speculation which was the reason for their civilization to advance at a rapid
pace.
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Table of Contents:
  1. INTRODUCTION:Methodology, Grading, Course Overview up to Midterm
  2. ANCIENT GREEK PHILOSOPHY/PSYCHOLOGY:Socrates, Plato
  3. GREEK THINKERS:Aristotle, Contiguity, Contrast
  4. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE 5TH TO 12TH CENTURY:Saint Augustine, Avicenna
  5. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE 5TH TO 12TH CENTURY:Al-Ghazali, Ibn-Rushd, Averroes
  6. RENAISSANCE:Rene Descartes
  7. ASSOCIATIONISTS:Thomas Hobbes, John Locke
  8. ASSOCIATIONISTS:David Hume, FRENCH REVOLUTION, Denis Diderot
  9. GERMAN CONTRIBUTION:Wilhelm Liebniz, Immanuel Kant, Friedrich Hegel
  10. INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION:RUSSIAN CONTRIBUTIONS
  11. RUSSIAN CONTRIBUTIONS:Ivan Pavlov, Reflex, Acquisition
  12. RUSSIAN CONTRIBUTIONS:Vladimir Bekhterev
  13. IMPACT OF PHYSICAL SCIENCES ON PSYCHOLOGY:Charles Darwin, Gustav Fechner
  14. STRUCTURALIST SCHOOL OF PSYCHOLOGY:Wilhelm Wundt
  15. FUNCTIONALISM:William James, John Dewey
  16. EUROPEAN FUNCTIONALISTS:David Katz, Edgar Rubin, Jean Piaget
  17. BEHAVIORISM:Edward Lee Thorndike, Law of belongingness
  18. BEHAVIORISM:Albert Weiss, Edwin Holt, Learning, Canalization, Walter Hunter
  19. BEHAVIORISM:J.B.Watson
  20. NEO-BEHAVIOURISTS:Clark Hull, Edward Tolman, Edwin Gutherie
  21. NEO-BEHAVIORISTS:B.F. Skinner, Karl Lashley, Donald Hebb, Hobart Mowrer
  22. GESTALT PSYCHOLOGY:Max Wertheimer, Similarity, Proximity, Closure
  23. GESTALT PSYCHOLOGY:Wolfgang Kohler, Kurt Koffka, Edward De Bono
  24. GESTALT SCHOOL AND DYNAMIC PSYCHOLOGY:Kurt Lewin, DYNAMIC PSYCHOLOGY
  25. HISTORICO-EVOLUTIONARY PSYCHOLOGY:Leon Vygotsky, Sergei Rubenstein
  26. HISTORICO-EVOLUTIONARY PSYCHOLOGY:Alexei Leontiev, K.M Bykov
  27. SCIENTIFIC LOOK AT MENTAL DISORDERS
  28. SCIENTIFIC LOOK AT MENTAL ILLNESS:Philippe Pinel, Sameul Tuke
  29. SIGMUND FREUD AND THE PSYCHOANALYTIC MOVEMENT:The Superego
  30. SIGMUND FREUD AND PSYCHOANALYTICAL MOVEMENT:Anna Freud
  31. CARL JUNG AND ANALYTICAL PSYCHOLOGY:Carl Gustav Jung
  32. JUNG’S ANALYTICAL PSYCHOLOGY:Carl Gustav Jung
  33. ALFRED ADLER AND INDIVIDUAL PSYCHOLOGY:Alfred Adler
  34. NEO-FREUDIANS:Harry Stack Sullivan, Karen Horney
  35. NEO-FREUDIANS:Karen Horney, Erich Fromm
  36. ERIKSON and MORENO:J.L. Moreno, Protagonist, Audience, Role playing
  37. HUMANISTIC PSYCHOLOGY:Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers, Positive Psychology
  38. MODERN TRENDS IN PSYCHOLOGICAL TREATMENT
  39. MODERN TRENDS IN PSYCHOLOGICAL TREATMENT:Biological Approaches
  40. ANTI-PSYCHIATRY MOVEMENT:D.L. Rosenhan, R.D. Laing, Aaron Esterson
  41. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE THIRD WORLD:Frantz Fanon
  42. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE THIRD WORLD CHINA AND PAKISTAN
  43. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE 21st CENTURY
  44. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE 21ST CENTURY:Consumer Psychology
  45. PSYCHOLOGY IN THE 21ST CENTURY:Sports Psychology, Positive Psychology