Abū al‐Barakāt al‐Baghdādī (d. 1164 or 1165) was one of the most original thinkers of the medieval period. Born a Jew in about 1080, but converted late in life to Islam, Abū ’l‐Barakāt was a prominent physician and natural philosopher who achieved considerable fame during his own lifetime, as his appellation awḥad al‐zamān (Unique of His Age) attests. His numerous insights into physics and metaphysics have been elucidated by the late Shlomo Pines in a number of brilliant studies, on which this résumé depends in large measure.
Abū ’l‐Barakāt's contributions are all contained in his chef d'æuvre, al‐Mu˓tabar(That Which has been Attained by Reflection). Although there may be some doctrinal discrepancies between various passages in the book, which may be due to the fact that the work is actually a collection of notes compiled over a considerable period of time, each section by itself displays a very clear and systematic exposition, surveying earlier opinions on the subject, objections to...
- Abū ’l‐Barakāt. al‐Mu˒tabar (That Which has been Attained by Reflection). Ed. Serefeddin Yaltkaya. 3 Vols. Hyderabad: Osmania Publication Bureau, 1938–1940.Google Scholar
- Pines, Shlomo. Studies in Abu ’l‐Barakāt al‐Baghdādī, Physics and Metaphysics (The Collected Works of Shlomo Pines, Vol. 1). Jerusalem/Leiden: Magnes Press/E. J. Brill, 1979.Google Scholar