Tuesday, July 9, 2013

010 - Apollonius - 'Aruj

Apollonius (in Arabic, Balinus). Name used for both the mathematician Apollonius of Perge in Pamphylia (c. 200 B.C.T.) and for Apollonius of Tyana in Cappadocia (of the first century of the Christian calendar).

Apollonius of Perga [Pergaeus] (ca. 262 B.C.T. – ca. 190 B.C.T.) was a Greek geometer and astronomer noted for his writings on conic sections. His innovative methodology and terminology, especially in the field of conics, influenced many later scholars including Ptolemy, Francesco Maurolico, Isaac Newton, and René Descartes. It was Apollonius who gave the ellipse, the parabola, and the hyperbola the names by which we know them. The hypothesis of eccentric orbits, or equivalently, deferent and epicycles, to explain the apparent motion of the planets and the varying speed of the Moon, are also attributed to him. Apollonius' theorem demonstrates that the two models are equivalent given the right parameters. Ptolemy describes this theorem in the Almagest XII.1. Apollonius also researched the lunar theory, for which he is said to have been called Epsilon (ε). The crater Apollonius on the Moon is named in his honor.

Apollonius of Tyana (ca. 15? – ca. 100? C.C.) was a Greek Neopythagorean philosopher and teacher. He hailed from the town of Tyana in the Roman province of Cappadocia in Asia Minor.

Apollonius's dates are uncertain. His primary biographer, Philostratus the Elder (c.170–247 C.C.) places him c. 3 BC.T. to 97 C.C.. Others agree that he was roughly a contemporary of Jesus of Nazareth. states that his date of birth was three years before Jesus, whose date of birth is also uncertain. Philostratus, in his Life of Apollonius of Tyana, places Apollonius as staying in the court of King Vardanes I of Parthia for a while, who ruled between c.40–47 C.C.. Apollonius began a five year silence at about the age of 20, and after the completion of this silence travelled to Mesopotamia and Iran. Philostratus also mentions emperors Nero, Vespasian, Titus, Domitian, and Nerva at various points throughout Apollonius’ life. Given this information, a timeline of roughly the years 15–98 C.C. can be established for his adult life..

By far the most detailed source is the Life of Apollonius of Tyana, a lengthy, novelistic biography written by the sophist Philostratus at the request of empress Julia Domna. She took her own life in 217 C.C., and he completed it after her death, between 217 and 238 C.C.. Philostratus’ account shaped the image of Apollonius for posterity and still dominates discussions about him in our times. To some extent it is a valuable source because it contains data from older writings which were available to Philostratus but disappeared later on. There are strong indications that Philostratus fabricated many of the stories and dialogues in his biography. On the other hand, some excerpts and letters are preserved which provide us with a more accurate picture of the historical Apollonius. Among these works are an excerpt (preserved by Eusebius) from On sacrifices, paraphrased selections from Moirogenes' and Maximus' works (preserved in Philostratus' work) and certain letters. Apollonius may really have written some of these works, along with the no-longer extant Biography of Pythagoras. Some modern scholars challenge the credibility of Philostratus' work. Some scholars dismiss most of it as pure invention (invented either by Philostratus or by his sources). Philostratus’ chronology, for instance, is often questioned. According to Philostratus, Apollonius lived from ca. 3 B.C.T. to about 97 C.C., while many contend that he was born more than four decades later and died more than two decades later, perhaps around 120 C.C.

One of the essential sources Philostratus claimed to know are the “memoirs” (or “diary”) of Damis, an acolyte and companion of Apollonius. Some scholars believe the notebooks of Damis were an invention of Philostratus, while others think it was a real book forged by someone else and used by Philostratus. It has been claimed to be a literary fake. Philostratus describes Apollonius as a wandering teacher of philosophy and miracle worker who was active in Italy, Spain and Ethiopia and even travelled to Mesopotamia, Arabia and India. In particular, he tells lengthy stories of Apollonius entering the city of Rome in disregard of emperor Nero’s ban on philosophers, and later on being summoned, as a defendant, to the court of emperor Domitian, where he defied the emperor in blunt terms. The latter charge had regarded the foretelling of a certain plague, to which Apollonius attributed to his prayer to Heracles and not to any sorcery on his part, arguing "[what wizard] would dedicate his personal achievement to a god?"

Apollonius may have never left the Greek East. Some contend that he never came to Western Europe and was virtually unknown there until the third century of the Christian calendar, when empress Julia Domna, who was herself an Easterner, decided to popularize him and his teachings in Rome. For that purpose she commissioned Philostratus to write the biography, where Apollonius is exalted as a fearless sage with supernatural powers, even greater than Pythagoras. Philostratus implies that upon his death, Apollonius of Tyana underwent heavenly assumption. Subsequently Apollonius was worshipped by Julia’s son emperor Caracalla and possibly also by her grand-nephew emperor Severus Alexander.

At least two biographical sources earlier than Philostratus are lost: a book by emperor Hadrian’s secretary Maximus of Aegaeae describing Apollonius’ activities in the city of Aegaeae in Cilicia, and a biography by a certain Moiragenes, as well as others.

Little can be derived from sources other than Philostratus. Hence if we dismiss Philostratus’ colorful stories as fiction, the figure of the historical Apollonius appears to be rather shadowy. Perhaps the most that can be said is that Apollonius appears to have been a wandering ascetic/philosopher/wonderworker of a type common to the eastern part of the early empire. What we can safely assume is that he was indeed a Pythagorean and as such, in conformity with the Pythagorean tradition, opposed animal sacrifice, and lived on a frugal, strictly vegetarian diet. He seems to have spent his entire life in the cities of his native Asia Minor and of northern Syria, in particular his home town of Tyana, Ephesus, Aegae, and Antioch. As for his philosophical convictions, we have an interesting, probably authentic fragment of one of his writings (On sacrifices) where he expresses his view that God, who is the most beautiful being, cannot be influenced by prayers or sacrifices and has no wish to be worshipped by humans, but can be reached by a spiritual procedure involving nous, because he himself is pure nous and nous is also the greatest faculty of mankind. The life of Apollonius of Tyana is often compared to that of Jesus of Nazareth.

Philostratus implies on one occasion that Apollonius had extra-sensory perception (Book VIII, Chapter XXVI). When emperor Domitian was murdered on September 18, 96 C.C., Apollonius was said to have witnessed the event in Ephesus "about midday" on the day it happened in Rome, and told those present "Take heart, gentlemen, for the tyrant has been slain this day...". The words that Philostratus attributes to him would make equal sense, however, if Apollonius had been informed that the emperor would be killed at noon on September 18th. Both Philostratus and renowned historian Cassius Dio report this incident, probably on the basis of an oral tradition. Both state that the philosopher welcomed the deed as a praiseworthy tyrannicide.

Philostratus devoted two and a half of the eight books of his Life of Apollonius (1.19–3.58) to the description of a journey of his hero to India. According to Philostratus' Life, en route to the Far East, Apollonius reached Hierapolis Bambyce (Manbij) in Syria (not Nineveh, as some scholars believed), where he met Damis, a native of that city who became his lifelong companion. Pythagoras, whom the Neo-Pythagoreans regarded as an exemplary sage, was believed to have travelled to India. Hence such a feat made Apollonius look like a good Pythagorean who spared no pains in his efforts to discover the sources of oriental piety and wisdom. As some details in Philostratus’ account of the Indian adventure seem incompatible with known facts, modern scholars are inclined to dismiss the whole story as a fanciful fabrication, but not all of them rule out the possibility that the Tyanean actually did visit India.

On the other hand, there seemed to be independent evidence showing that Apollonius was known in India. In two Sanskrit texts quoted by Sanskritist Vidhushekhara Bhattacharya in 1943 he appears as "Apalūnya", in one of them together with Damis (called "Damīśa"). There it is claimed that Apollonius and Damis were Western yogis who held wrong Buddhist views, but later on were converted to the correct Advaita philosophy. Classical philologists believed that these Indian sources derived their information from a Sanskrit translation of Philostratus’ work (which would have been a most uncommon and amazing occurrence), or even considered the possibility that it was really an independent confirmation of the historicity of the journey to India. Only in 1995 were the passages in the Sanskrit texts proven to be interpolations by a modern (late 19th century) forger.

Several writings and many letters have been ascribed to Apollonius, but some of them are lost; others have only been preserved in parts or fragments of disputed authenticity. Porphyry and Iamblichus refer to a biography of Pythagoras by Apollonius, which has not survived; it is also mentioned in the Suda. Apollonius wrote a treatise On sacrifices, of which only a short, probably authentic fragment has come down to us.

Philostratus’ Life and the anthology assembled by John Stobaeus contain purported letters of Apollonius. Some of them are cited in full, others only partially. There is also an independently transmitted collection of letters preserved in medieval manuscripts. It is difficult to determine what is authentic and what not. Some of the letters may have been forgeries or literary exercises assembled in collections which were already circulated in the 2nd century of the Christian calendar. It has been asserted that Philostratus himself forged a considerable part of the letters he inserted into his work, others were older forgeries available to him.

In the second century the satirist Lucian of Samosata was a sharp critic of Neo-Pythagoreanism. After 180 C.C. he wrote a pamphlet where he attacked Alexander of Abonoteichus, a student of one of Apollonius’ students, as a charlatan, and suggested that the whole school was based on fraud. From this we can infer that Apollonius really had students and that his school survived at least till Lucian’s time. One of Philostratus’ foremost aims was to oppose this view; although he related various miraculous feats of Apollonius, he emphasized at the same time that his hero was not a magician, but a serious philosopher and a champion of traditional Greek values.

When emperor Aurelian conducted his military campaign against the Palmyrene Empire, he captured Tyana in 272 C.C.. According to the Historia Augusta he abstained from destroying the city after having a vision of Apollonius admonishing him to spare the innocent citizens.

In Philostratus’ description of Apollonius’ life and deeds there are a number of similarities with the life and especially the claimed miracles of Jesus. Perhaps this parallel was intentional, but the original aim was hardly to present Apollonius as a rival of Jesus. However, in the late third century Porphyry, an anti-Christian Neoplatonic philosopher, claimed in his treatise Against the Christians that the miracles of Jesus were not unique, and mentioned Apollonius as a non-Christian who had accomplished similar achievements. Around 300, Roman authorities used the fame of Apollonius in their struggle to wipe out Christianity. Hierocles, one of the main instigators of the persecution of Christians in 303, wrote a pamphlet where he argued that Apollonius exceeded Christ as a wonder-worker and yet was not worshipped as a god, and that the cultured biographers of Apollonius were more trustworthy than the uneducated apostles. This attempt to make Apollonius a hero of the anti-Christian movement provoked sharp replies from bishop Eusebius of Caesarea and from Lactantius. Eusebius wrote an extant reply to the pamphlet of Hierocles, where he claimed that Philostratus was a fabulist and that Apollonius was a sorcerer in league with demons. This started a debate on the relative merits of Jesus and Apollonius that has gone on in different forms into modern times.

In Late Antiquity talismans made by Apollonius appeared in several cities of the Eastern Roman Empire, as if they were sent from heaven. They were magical figures and columns erected in public places, meant to protect the cities from afflictions. The great popularity of these talismans was a challenge to the Christians. Some Byzantine authors condemned them as sorcery and the work of demons, others admitted that such magic was beneficial; none of them claimed that it did not work.

In the Western Roman Empire, Sidonius Apollinaris was a Christian admirer of Apollonius in the 5th century. He produced a Latin translation of Philostratus’ Life, which is lost.

Apollonius was a known figure in the medieval Islamic world. In the Arabic literature he appears as Balīnūs (or Balīnās or Abūlūniyūs). Arabic-speaking occultists dubbed him "Lord of the talismans" (Ṣᾱḥib aṭ-ṭilasmᾱt) and related stories about his achievements as a talisman-maker. They appreciated him as a master of alchemy and a transmitter of Hermetic knowledge. Some occult writings were circulated under his name; among them were:

the Kitᾱb Sirr al-ḫalīqa (Book on the Secret of Creation), also named Kitᾱb al-῾ilal (Book of the Causes)
the Risᾱla fī ta ṯīr ar-rūḥᾱnīyᾱt fī l-murakkabᾱt (Treatise on the influence of the spiritual beings on the composite things)
al-Mudḫal al-kabīr ilᾱ risᾱlati aṭ-ṭalᾱsim (Great introduction to the treatise on the talismans)
the Kitᾱb ṭalᾱsim Balīnᾱs al-akbar (Great book of Balinas’ talismans)
the Kitᾱb Ablūs al-ḥakīm (Book of the sage Ablus)
Medieval alchemist Jabir ibn Hayyan's Book of Stones According to the Opinion of Balīnās contains an exposition and analysis of views expressed in Arabic occult works attributed to Apollonius.

There were also medieval Latin and vernacular translations of Arabic books attributed to “Balinus”.

The Tablet of Wisdom written by Bahá'u'lláh, the founder of the Bahá'í Faith, names "Balinus" (Apollonius) as a great philosopher, who "surpassed everyone else in the diffusion of arts and sciences and soared unto the loftiest heights of humility and supplication."

In Europe, there has been great interest in Apollonius since the beginning of the 16th century, but the traditional ecclesiastical viewpoint still prevailed. Until the Age of Enlightenment, the Tyanean was usually treated as a demonic magician and a great enemy of the Church who collaborated with the devil and tried to overthrow Christianity. On the other hand, several advocates of Enlightenment, deism and anti-Church positions saw him as an early forerunner of their own ethical and religious ideas, a proponent of a universal, non-denominational religion compatible with Reason. In 1680, Charles Blount, a radical English deist, published the first English translation of the first two books of Philostratus' Life with an anti-Church introduction. Voltaire praised Apollonius.

As in Late Antiquity, comparisons between Apollonius and Christ became commonplace in the 17th and 18th centuries in the context of polemic about Christianity. In the Marquis de Sade's "Dialogue Between a Priest and a Dying Man", the Dying Man compares Jesus to Apollonius as a false prophet. Some Theosophists, notably C.W. Leadbeater, Alice A. Bailey, and Benjamin Creme, have maintained that Apollonius of Tyana was the reincarnation of the being they call the Master Jesus. In the 20th century, Ezra Pound evoked Apollonius in his later Cantos as a figure associated with sun-worship and a messianic rival to Christ. Pound identifies him as Aryan within an anti-semitic mythology, and celebrates his solar worship and aversion to ancient Jewish animal sacrifice. In the Gerald Messadié's "The man who became god", Apollonius appears as a wandering philosopher and magician of about the same age as Jesus. The two of them supposedly met.

Balinus see Apollonius

Aprigio.  Black slave leader who organized an unsuccessful revolt of Hausa Muslim slaves in Bahia, Brazil, in 1835. 

Aqa Khan Kirmani
Aqa Khan Kirmani (Bardasiri) (1853-1896).  Modernist thinker of Iran.  He was a Pan-Islamic activist, but was nevertheless anti-religious and quite hostile to many traditional practices.
Bardasiri see Aqa Khan Kirmani
Kirmani, Aqa Khan see Aqa Khan Kirmani

Aqa Najafi
Aqa Najafi (1845-1931).   Member of an important clerical family of Isfahan and himself an influential and wealthy religious authority.

Aqasi, Mirza
Aqasi, Mirza (1783-1849). Chief minister to Muhammad Qajar Shah, ruler of Iran, from June 1835 to September 1848.  His tenure in office was marked by encouragement of the shah’s Sufi proclivities, which led to the total alienation of the 'ulama' (clerics); maladministration of state finances; and a series of foreign policy disasters, including the loss of Herat and the granting to Russia of a seafaring monopoly on the Caspian Sea.  He is nonetheless affectionately remembered for his witticisms and for his eccentric enterprises, such as the shoeing of camels like horses.  
Mirza Aqasi see Aqasi, Mirza

‘Aqqad, ‘Abbas Mahmud al-
‘Aqqad, ‘Abbas Mahmud al-.  See ‘Abbas Mahmud al-‘Aqqad.

Arabi.  African slave, probably a Muslim, who in 1757 and 1761 led several insurrections against colonists in Dutch Guiana.  By the Treaty of Auca, he was granted the right to found a republic on the condition that he give no further asylum to African fugitives.

Arafat, Yasir
Arafat, Yasir (Yasir Arafat) (Yassir Arafat) (August 24, 1929-November 11, 2004).  Palestinian Arab nationalist who became the President of Palestine.

Mohammed Abdel Rahman Abdel Raouf Arafat al-Qudwa al-Husseini, popularly known as Yasser Arafat or by his kunya Abu Ammar, was a Palestinian leader. He was Chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization, President of the Palestinian National Authority, and leader of the Fatah political party, which he founded in 1959. Arafat spent much of his life fighting against Israel in the name of Palestinian self-determination. Originally opposed to Israel's existence, he modified his position in 1988 when he accepted UN Security Council Resolution 242.

Born in Jerusalem (other sources say Cairo, Egypt or Gaza).  After his mother's death, when Arafat was four years old, Arafat shuttled back and forth among relatives in Cairo, Gaza, and Jerusalem throughout his childhood.  In 1947, during the wars with the Jews, Arafat fought on the side of the grand mufti of Jerusalem.  He fled after the establishment of the nation of Israel in 1948, settling in Cairo.  He later studied engineering in Cairo (at the University of Cairo), and also trained as a fedayeen (commando).  

In 1952, Arafat joined the Muslim Brotherhood and the Union of Palestinian Students, of which he became president.  In 1956, he participated in the Suez campaign as a member of the Egyptian Army.

In 1956, Arafat founded the commando group known as al-Fatah ("the Conquest") and for the next few years, while working as an engineer with a construction firm in Kuwait, repeatedly led fedayeen raids deep into Israeli territory.  As the leader of al-Fatah, Arafat launched a series of high-profile acts of anti-Israel terrorism.  According to Middle East experts, it was Arafat who was the mastermind behind the kidnapping that resulted in the deaths of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Germany.

In 1964, Arafat linked al-Fatah with similar groups in the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).  In 1967, Israel defeated Arab countries in a war and occupied the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, lands where many Palestinians had lived since 1948.  The Palestinians had moved into these regions after Israel officially came into being and was immediately attacked by surrounding Arab countries.  

Israel's occupation of Gaza and the West Bank after 1967 further inflamed Arab-Israeli tensions, causing Palestinian nationalism to become more radical.  After the war, al-Fatah and guerrilla groups gained control of the PLO, which Arab leaders had established to represent the Palestinians.  In 1969, Arafat was elected chairman of the PLO, which he controlled for the rest of his life.

After becoming the leader of the PLO, Arafat worked on bringing the PLO from an ideology of Pan-Arabism to Palestinian nationalism.  After the Arab League recognized the PLO as the sole representative of Palestinian Arabs in 1974, Arafat worked ceaselessly, and with some success, to win the organization international recognition.  At the same time, Arafat made a strong effort to shed his terrorist image for that of the moderate statesman.

Arafat's self-reinvention from guerrilla fighter to statesman began in 1974, when he became the first person to address the United Nations as a leader of a liberation movement rather than a United Nations member state.  After his appearance before the General Assembly, the United Nations recognized the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people.

In 1982, the PLO was forced to move from Lebanon, the site of the organization's headquarters, after Israel attacked the country.  The headquarters of the PLO were re-located to Borj Cedria in the Gulf of Tunis, Tunisia.  

On November 15, 1988, the State of Palestine was proclaimed at a meeting in Algiers, Algeria.   Subsequently, in 1989, Arafat was elected president of the State of Palestine by the Central Council of the Palestine National Council.

In 1991, United States led talks began in Madrid, but were unproductive.  

In 1993, the Oslo Agreement (the Oslo Accords) brought the peace process significantly forward.  The basis for the prospective peace was to be a “land for peace” principle.  Based upon this agreement, Arafat recognized Israel’s right to exist. By signing the Oslo Agreement, Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin established a framework and timetable for the Middle East peace process.  The process included the gradual transfer of control of parts of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to the Palestinian Authority, which Arafat headed.  That year, both men shared the Nobel Peace Prize along with Israeli leader Shimon Peres.

In May 1994, Israeli forces withdrew from the town of Jericho in order to relinquish control to the Palestinians.  In July of 1994, Arafat returned to Palestine.

On January 20, 1996, Arafat was elected president of the Palestinian Authority in public elections with 88% of the vote.  

In the year 2000, Arafat turned down a peace proposal from the Israeli prime minister, Ehud Barak, which would have given Palestine control over more than 90% of the territory of the West Bank.  This peace proposal was the biggest compromise Israel had ever offered.

Later that year, Palestine entered a situation of civil unrest, where Palestinians threw stones at soldiers, who retaliated with bullets.  Hundreds of Palestinians were killed.

In December 2000, reports of new negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians were announced.

In 2001, the dialogue between Israel and Palestine disintegrated following numerous terrorist attacks from Palestinian groups on Israeli civilians followed by Israeli attacks on Palestinian militants, their leaders and many Palestinian civilians.  By Christmas, Arafat had been stripped of much of his power by Israel’s Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and had been placed under virtual house arrest.

Arafat’s international profile changed during his more than 40 year career.  During the 1960s, he was looked upon as leader and conductor of several terrorist attacks into Israel.  In the 1970s, the international society came to regard him as being a politician without country, but still associated with the activities performed in the 1960s.  In the 1980s, Arafat started to gain more important support in the West, mainly because of increasingly questionable Israeli military actions (e.g., attacks in Lebanon, massacres in Sabra and Chatila).

In the 1990s, Arafat came to be considered a pragmatic moderate, and by many foreign observers as a wiser politician than his Israeli opponents.  

By 2001, Arafat’s position had weakened, as well as his popularity.  There were several reasons for this.  Other more radical groups became far more active as well as representative of public opinion.  Israeli actions against the Palestinian infrastructure, like the police, made it virtually impossible for Arafat to exercise much power, hence creating an image of him as weak and ineffective among his own supporters.  There were also indications that Arafat himself was sympathetic with certain radical groups, and gave said groups sufficient room for their uprising -- their intifada --  and their terrorist attacks on Israeli soil.  

Arafat’s rule over the small territories that had been given autonomy was not very successful.  There were many violations of human rights and economic growth was stunted.  Much of this was ascribed to Arafat, who was accused of being too weak to prevent corruption and nepotism amongst the new leadership of Palestine.

During the same period, Israel made it more difficult for Palestinians living in occupied territories who worked in Israel to keep their positions.  The result was that living conditions became worse for most of the Palestinians.  

Ultimately, Arafat's legacy is ambiguous at best.  He died without achieving any of the goals he had championed at various times in his life -- the destruction of Israel; then peace with Israel, which he backed after 1988; and an independent Palestinian nation with Jerusalem as its capital.  He did, however, succeed in forging a nationalist movement among Palestinians, and he placed his people and their situation at the absolute center of world politics.

Yasir Arafat see Arafat, Yasir
Yassir Arafat see Arafat, Yasir

‘Arif, 'Abd al-Salam
‘Arif, 'Abd al-Salam.  See 'Abd al-Salam 'Arif.

‘Arif, Mirza Abu ’l-Qasim
‘Arif, Mirza Abu ’l-Qasim.  See Mirza Abu ’l-Qasim ‘Arif.

Aristotle (in Arabic, Aristu(talis)).  Greek philosopher whose writings, with a very few exceptions, became known to the Arabs in translation.  Most Arab philosophers regard him as the outstanding and unique representative of philosophy.  Ibn Rushd called him “the example of what nature invented to show final human perfection.”

Aristotle (Greek: Ἀριστοτέλης, Aristotélēs) (384 B.C.T. – 322 B.C.T.) was a Greek philosopher, a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. He wrote on many subjects, including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, politics, government, ethics, biology and zoology.

Together with Plato and Socrates (Plato's teacher), Aristotle is one of the most important founding figures in Western philosophy. He was the first to create a comprehensive system of Western philosophy, encompassing morality and aesthetics, logic and science, politics and metaphysics. Aristotle's views on the physical sciences profoundly shaped medieval scholarship, and their influence extended well into the Renaissance, although they were ultimately replaced by Newtonian Physics. In the biological sciences, some of his observations were confirmed to be accurate only in the nineteenth century. His works contain the earliest known formal study of logic, which was incorporated in the late nineteenth century into modern formal logic. In metaphysics, Aristotelianism had a profound influence on philosophical and theological thinking in the Islamic and Jewish traditions in the Middle Ages, and it continues to influence Christian theology, especially Eastern Orthodox theology, and the scholastic tradition of the Catholic Church. All aspects of Aristotle's philosophy continue to be the object of active academic study today.

Though Aristotle wrote many elegant treatises and dialogues (Cicero described his literary style as "a river of gold"), it is thought that the majority of his writings are now lost and only about one-third of the original works have survived.

Aristu see Aristotle
Aristutalis see Aristotle

Arkam.  An early Meccan convert to Islam.

Arkoun, Mohammed
Arkoun, Mohammed (b. February 1, 1928).  Algerian Islamic scholar and writer.  One of the leading Arab Muslim intellectuals of his time, Arkoun was involved in the sensitive task of re-interpreting and recasting the classical religious, legal, and philosophical traditions through a sophisticated hermeneutical system inspired by contemporary Western critical methodologies, a task that made him a controversial participant in the creation of a modern Arabo-Islamic critical discourse.

Arkoun was born on January 2, 1928, in the Berber village of Taourirt-Mimoun in Kabylia.  From his modest beginnings as the son of a spice merchant, Arkoun went on to become a highly successful international scholar and thinker.  He began Arabic studies in his native country and completed them in Paris.  He was associated with the Sorbonne where he was the Professor of the History of Islamic Thought and was formerly Director of the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies there.  He was also the editor in chief of the French scholarly journal Arabica for many years.  Arkoun’s international visibility has brought lectures and visiting appointments at academic institutions worldwide, including the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.  His adopted homeland appointed Arkoun Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur and Officier des Palmes Academiques.

What distinguished Arkoun from many other contemporary Arab and Muslim intellectuals was precisely what qualified him to be editor of Arabica – his serious training as a medievalist.  Arkoun established himself as a foremost student of medieval Islamic thought with his work on the philosopher and thinker Miskawayh (d. 1030).  He edited two treatises by Miskawayh and translated his Tahdhib al-akhlaq, a work whose close relationship to Aristotle’s Nichomachean Ethics compels anyone attempting to deal with the Arabic text to also grapple with Greek philosophy.

With this philosophical background combined with the resources of French criticism, Arkoun began his own intellectual crusade.  His re-readings of the rich Islamic religious and legal traditions are an extension of this dual intellectual allegiance to the modern humanities and social sciences and to medieval studies.  Arkoun also wrote widely on topics ranging from the twelfth-century Andalusian philosopher and physician Ibn Tufayl to Orientalism.  

Arkoun’s Lectures du Coran was perhaps his most challenging and important work.  The author pled eloquently and passionately for clear analytical distinctions in dealing with the Muslim holy book.  According to Arkoun, too many levels of production of the sacred text are amalgated under the title of the Qur’an.  There is the word of God, the Logos, of which the revelations of the three monotheistic religions are but fragments.  There are also the Qur’anic discourse, the actual written text of the Qur’an, and the commentaries on this text.  These distinctions permit a much more sophisticated reading of the scriptures.  

Arkoun’s ideas did not go unchallenged by the intellectual leaders of the contemporary Islamist movement.  An impassioned debate occurred between Arkoun and the Egyptian Shaykh Muhammad al-Ghazali in Algeria.  Almost as quickly as the works of al-Ghazali became available to an international audience, so Arkoun’s works were re-edited in French in North Africa, translated into Arabic, and published in London.  Arkoun’s impact on the contemporary Arab Muslim intellectual scene became increasingly important as the Islamist movement grew in strength.  Arkoun defined the Islamic concept of the jihad al-nafs (personal jihad) as the work of the intellectual who feels a sense of solidarity with the society to which he belongs.  This jihad al-nafs was Arkoun’s mission.  

Arkoun was decorated as an Officer of the French Légion d'honneur in July 1996. In 2001, Professor Arkoun was asked to deliver the Gifford Lectures, which enable a notable scholar to contribute to the advancement of theological and philosophical thought and was announced as the recipient of the Seventeenth Georgio Levi Della Vida Award for his lifelong contribution to the field of Islamic Studies.

Mohammed Arkoun see Arkoun, Mohammed

Arruma.  Afro-Brazilian leader of the revolts of the Muslim Hausa slaves from 1807 to 1816.  The revolts were centered around Bahia. 

Arsuzi, Zaki
Arsuzi, Zaki (Zaki Arsuzi) (Zaki Arsuzi) (June 1899 - July 1968).  Syrian politician, thinker and counsellor.  He was born in Antioch (now part of Turkey) into a lower middle class family.  In the late 1920s, he was educated at the University of Sorbonne in Paris, France. In 1931, he received a degree in philosophy.  In 1932, Arsuzi established himself in Antioch, where he became a school teacher. During the 1930s, slowly, Arsuzi turned his attention towards nationalistic politics.  In 1939, after the annexation of Antioch by Turkey, Arsuzi moved to Damascus.  There he soon started his own political groups, aiming at a renaissance in the Arab world.  The reaction of the French authorities was to terminate him from his job.  In 1947, following talks that started the preceding year, Arsuzi joined forces with the Ba‘th movement led by Michel Aflaq and Salah al-Din Bitar.  Together they founded the Arab Ba‘th Party.  In 1963, Arsuzi became the counsellor to the commander of the air force, Hafez al-Assad, who set out to impregnate the Syrian military with the ideology of the Ba‘th Party.  Arsuzi died in Damascus in 1968.

Zakī al-Arsūzī was born to an Alawi family in Lattakia on the Syrian coast of the Ottoman Empire, but moved soon afterwards to Iskandarun province in the Sanjak of Alexandretta (now Hatay). He was educated in a religious school and a primary school in Antakya and then received his secondary education in Konya. After completing his education he was appointed a secondary school teacher in Antakya and later became director of education in Arsuz province.

In 1927, al-Arsuzi traveled to Paris to study in the Department of Philosophy in the Sorbonne. During this period, he came under the intellectual influence of French thinkers such as Henri Bergson and of the German idealists. He was also impressed by the works of Ibn Arabi and Ibn Khaldun.

Al-Arsuzi returned to Syria in 1930 and worked as a teacher in Antakya, Aleppo and Deir ez-Zor. In this period, he began his career of political militancy. In 1934, he was dismissed from his teaching post by the French authorities and returned to Iskandarun province. At the time, there was considerable agitation over demands from the province's sizable Turkish minority that it be handed over to Turkey. Al-Arsuzi established his first political organization, the National Action League, in opposition to these demands, and was intensely active from 1936 to 1938 when the French authorities granted the province to Turkey.

In 1938, the League was dissolved, and al-Arsuzi founded the Arabism Club and opened a bookshop with the name "Al-Ba'th al-Arabi" ("The Arab Renaissance"). This appears to have been the first use of the term ba'th in Arab nationalist circles.

In 1940, al-Arsuzi travelled to Baghdad where he took up a new job, but he was dismissed before the end of the year and returned to Damascus, where in November he decided to establish a group under the name of the Arab Renaissance (al-ba'th al-'arabi).  In 1944, some of al-Arsuzi's followers deserted him, and later, in June 1945, they joined the Arab Resurrection (al-ihya al-'arabi) group led by Michel Aflaq and Salah al-Din al-Bitar. Thus, Arsuzi's part in the foundation of the Ba'th Party was of two kinds: his intellectual contribution in itself, and his role in mobilising an active group of young men, many of them refugees from Iskandarun like himself, who would form one of the nuclei of the new party. It is suggested that al-Arsuzi played a direct role in the formation of the Ba'th organisation itself. When the Ba'th Party was formally established by 'Aflaq and Bitar in Damascus in 1947, Arsuzi was not a member.

Al-Arsuzi paid considerable attention to cultural matters, and the only condition of membership in his organization was to write or translate a book contributing to the resurrection (ba'th) of Arab heritage. He was described as a proponent of the linguistic image of Arab nationalism, and, in 1942, published one of his most important works, Abqariyyat al-'arabiyya fi lisaniha (The Genius of Arabic in its Tongue). His approach was distinguished by its emphasis on philology, but he did also pay attention to problems of the modern state and to questions of democracy and the locus of power. Al-Arsuzi was also described as having a racialist outlook which proved in the end intellectually sterile and unsatisfactory to his followers, and as having been deeply influenced in his thought by the tenets of his Alawi religious background. However, others have been more positive in their assessment of al-Arsuzi's contribution to the ideology of Arab nationalism.

After his return from Baghdad in 1940 al-Arsuzi gained a position teaching philosophy but he was soon dismissed from it. From 1945 until 1952, he worked again as a secondary teacher, first in Hama and then in Aleppo, and from 1952 until his retirement in 1959 he taught in a teacher training college. In 1963, in the wake of the Sixth National Congress of the Ba'th Party and the party's gradual alienation from its founders Aflaq and Bitar, Hafiz al-Asad arranged for Arsuzi to help with Ba'thist ideological formation in the army, and later ensured that he was granted a state pension.

Zaki al-Arsuzi died in Damascus in July 1968.

Zaki Arsuzi see Arsuzi, Zaki
Zaki al-Arsuzi see Arsuzi, Zaki

‘Aruj (c.1474-1518).   Turkish corsair who, together with his brother Khayr al-Din Barbarossa, seized possession of Algiers at the beginning of the sixteenth century.  

'Aruj (also called Barbarossa or Redbeard) (Turkish: 'Aruj or Oruç Reis, Spanish: Arrudye; c. 1474 – 1518) was a Turkish privateer and Ottoman Bey (Governor) of Algiers and Beylerbey (Chief Governor) of the West Mediterranean. He was born on the island of Midilli (Lesbos) in today's Greece and was killed in a battle with the Spaniards in Algeria. He became known as Baba 'Aruj or Baba Oruç (Father 'Aruj) when he transported large numbers of Mudejar refugees from Spain to North Africa. He was known through folk etymology in Europe as Barbarossa (which meant "redbeard" in Italian).

He was the older brother of the famous Turkish privateer and Ottoman admiral Khayr al-Din (Hayreddin) Barbarossa.

"Aruj was one of four brothers who were born in the 1470s on the island of Lesbos to their Muslim Turkish father, Yakup Ağa, and his Christian Greek wife, Katerina. Yakup Ağa was a Tımarlı Sipahi, i.e. a Turkish feudal cavalry knight, whose family had its origins in Eceabat and Balıkesir, and later moved to the Ottoman city of Vardar Yenice, now Giannitsa, near Thessaloniki. Yakup Ağa was among those appointed by Sultan Mehmed II to capture Lesbos from the Genoese in 1462, and he was granted the fief of Bonova village as a reward for fighting for the cause. He married a local Greek girl from Mytilene named Katerina, and they had two daughters and four sons: Ishak, 'Aruj (Oruç), Hızır and Ilyas. Yakup became an established potter and purchased a boat of his own to trade his products. The brothers helped their father with his business, but not much is known about the sisters.

All four brothers became seamen, engaged in marine affairs and international sea trade. 'Aruj was the first brother to be involved in seamanship, soon joined by the youngest brother Ilyas. Hızır initially helped their father in the pottery business, but later obtained a ship of his own and also began a career at sea. Ishak, the eldest, remained on Mytilene and was involved with the financial affairs of the family business. The other three brothers initially worked as sailors, but then turned privateers in the Mediterranean, counteracting the privateering of the Knights of St. John of the Island of Rhodes. "Aruj and Ilyas operated in the Levant, between Anatolia, Syria and Egypt, while Hızır operated in the Aegean Sea and based his operations mostly in Thessaloniki.

"Aruj was a very successful seaman. He also learned to speak Italian, Spanish, French, Greek and Arabic in the early years of his career. While returning from a trading expedition in Tripoli, Lebanon, he and Ilyas were attacked by a galley of the Knights of St. John. Ilyas was killed in the fight, and 'Aruj was wounded. Their father's boat was captured, and "Aruj was taken prisoner and detained in the Knights' Bodrum Castle for nearly three years. Upon learning the location of his brother, Hızır went to Bodrum and managed to help "Aruj escape.
'Aruj later went to Antalya, where he was given 18 galleys by Shehzade Korkud, an Ottoman prince and governor of the city, and charged with fighting against the Knights of St. John who inflicted serious damage on Ottoman shipping and trade. In the following years, when Shehzade Korkud became governor of Manisa, he gave "Aruj a larger fleet of 24 galleys at the port of İzmir and ordered him to participate in the Ottoman naval expedition to Puglia in Italy, where "Aruj bombarded several coastal forts and captured two ships. On his way back to Lesbos, he stopped at Euboea and captured three galleons and another ship. Reaching Mytilene with these captured vessels, "Aruj learned that Shehzade Korkud, brother of the new Ottoman sultan, had fled to Egypt in order to avoid being killed because of succession disputes -- a common practice at that time in the House of Osman. Fearing trouble due to his well-known association with the Ottoman prince in exile, 'Aruj sailed to Egypt where he met Shehzade Korkud in Cairo and managed to get an audience with the Mamluk Sultan Qansuh al-Ghawri, who gave him another ship and charged him to raid the coasts of Italy and the islands of the Mediterranean that were controlled by Christian powers. After passing the winter in Cairo, he set sail from Alexandria and operated along the coasts of Liguria and Sicily.

In 1503, 'Aruj managed to seize three more ships and made the island of Djerba his new base, thus moving his operations to the Western Mediterranean. Hızır joined "Aruj at Djerba. In 1504, the two brothers asked Abu Abdullah Mohammed Hamis, sultan of Tunisia from the Beni Hafs dynasty, for permission to use the strategically located port of La Goulette for their operations. They were granted this right, with the condition of leaving one third of their booty to the sultan. "Aruj, in command of small galliots, captured two much larger Papal galleys near the island of Elba. Later, near Lipari, the two brothers captured a Sicilian warship, the Cavalleria, with 380 Spanish soldiers and 60 Spanish knights from Aragon on board, who were on their way from Spain to Naples. In 1505, they raided the coasts of Calabria. These accomplishments increased their fame and they were joined by a number of other well-known Muslim corsairs, including Kurtoğlu (known in the West as Curtogoli). In 1508, they raided the coasts of Liguria, particularly Diano Marina.

In 1509, Ishak also left Mytilene and joined his brothers at La Goulette. The fame of "Aruj increased when between 1504 and 1510 he transported Muslim Mudejars from Christian Spain to North Africa. His efforts of helping the Muslims of Spain in need and transporting them to safer lands earned him the honorific name Baba 'Aruj (Father 'Aruj), which eventually— due to the similarity in sound— evolved in Spain, Italy and France into Barbarossa (Redbeard in Italian).

In 1510, the three brothers raided Cape Passero in Sicily and repulsed a Spanish attack on Bougie, Oran and Algiers. In August 1511, they raided the areas around Reggio Calabria in southern Italy. In August 1512, the exiled ruler of Bougie invited the brothers to drive out the Spaniards, and during the battle 'Aruj lost his left arm. This incident earned him the nickname Gümüş Kol (Silver Arm in Turkish), in reference to the silver prosthetic device which he used in place of his missing limb. Later that year, the three brothers raided the coasts of Andalusia in Spain, capturing a galliot of the Lomellini family of Genoa who owned the Tabarca island in that area. They subsequently landed on Minorca and captured a coastal castle, and then headed towards Liguria and captured four Genoese galleys near Genoa. The Genoese sent a fleet to liberate their ships, but the brothers captured their flagship as well. After capturing a total of 23 ships in less than a month, the brothers sailed back to La Goulette.

There the brothers built three more galliots and a gunpowder production facility. In 1513, they captured four English ships on their way to France, raided Valencia where they captured four more ships, and then headed for Alicante and captured a Spanish galley near Málaga. In 1513 and 1514, the three brothers engaged Spanish squadrons on several other occasions and moved to their new base in Cherchell, east of Algiers. In 1514, with 12 galliots and 1,000 Turks, they destroyed two Spanish fortresses at Bougie, and when a Spanish fleet under the command of Miguel de Gurrea, viceroy of Majorca, arrived for assistance, they headed towards Ceuta and raided that city before capturing Jijel in Algeria, which was under Genoese control. They later captured Mahdiya in Tunisia. Afterwards they raided the coasts of Sicily, Sardinia, the Balearic Islands and the Spanish mainland, capturing three large ships there. In 1515, they captured several galleons, a galley and three barques at Majorca. Still in 1515, "Aruj sent precious gifts to the Ottoman Sultan Selim I who, in return, sent him two galleys and two swords embellished with diamonds. In 1516, joined by Kurtoğlu, the brothers besieged the Castle of Elba, before heading once more towards Liguria where they captured 12 ships and damaged 28 others.

In 1516, the three brothers succeeded in liberating Jijel and Algiers from the Spaniards, but eventually assumed control over the cities and surrounding region, forcing the previous ruler, Abu Hamo Musa III of the Beni Ziyad dynasty, to flee. The local Spaniards in Algiers sought refuge in the island of Peñón near Algiers and asked Emperor Charles V, King of Spain, to intervene, but the Spanish fleet failed to force the brothers out of Algiers.

After consolidating his power and declaring himself the new Sultan of Algiers, 'Aruj sought to enhance his territory inlands and took Miliana, Medea and Ténès. He became known for attaching sails to cannons for transport through the deserts of North Africa. In 1517 the brothers raided Capo Limiti and later the Island of Capo Rizzuto in Calabria.

For 'Aruj, the best protection against Spain was to join the Ottoman Empire, his homeland and Spain's main rival. For this he had to relinquish his title of Sultan of Algiers to the Ottomans. He did this in 1517 and offered Algiers to the Ottoman Sultan. The Sultan accepted Algiers as an Ottoman Sanjak (province), appointed 'Aruj as the Bey (Governor) of Algiers and Beylerbey (Chief Governor) of West Mediterranean, and promised to support him with janissaries, galleys and cannons.

The Spaniards ordered Abu Zayan, whom they had appointed as the new ruler of Tlemcen and Oran, to attack 'Aruj by land, but 'Aruj learned of the plan and pre-emptively struck against Tlemcen, capturing the city and executing Abu Zayan. The only survivor of Abu Zayan's dynasty was Sheikh Buhammud, who escaped to Oran and called for Spain's assistance.

In May 1518, Emperor Charles V arrived at Oran and was received there by Sheikh Buhammud and the Spanish governor of the city, Diego de Cordoba, marquess of Comares, who commanded a force of 10,000 Spanish soldiers. Joined by thousands of Bedouins, the Spaniards marched overland on Tlemcen where 'Aruj and Ishak awaited them with 1,500 Turkish and 5,000 Moorish soldiers. They defended Tlemcen for 20 days, but were eventually killed in combat by the forces of Garcia de Tineo.

The last remaining brother, Hızır Reis, inherited his brother's place, his name (Barbarossa) and his mission.

'Aruj established a Turkish presence in North Africa that lasted for four centuries until the loss of Algeria to France in 1830, of Tunisia to France in 1881, of Libya to Italy in 1912 and until the official loss of Egypt and Sudan to the United Kingdom in 1914, after the Ottoman Empire joined World War I on the side of the Central Powers. The Republic of Turkey officially renounced the remaining disputed Turkish rights in some territories of Egypt and Sudan with the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923.

Several submarines of the Turkish Navy have been named after 'Aruj (Oruç Reis).

Barbarossa was the influence behind the character, Captain Hector Barbossa from the movie Pirates of the Carribean. It was revealed that costar Johnny Depp played a decisive part in providing the name. His last name is both a pun on the surname of Portuguese origin "Barbosa" and is based on Barbarossa, the Ottoman privateer. The word is a combination of the Italian words barba (beard) and ossa (bones) which is very consistent with his skeletal look shown in the first movie.

'Aruj Reis see ‘Aruj
Oruc Reis see ‘Aruj
Arrudye see ‘Aruj
Barbarossa see ‘Aruj
Redbeard see ‘Aruj
Baba 'Aruj see ‘Aruj

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