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By Averroes

The Incoherence of the Incoherence, Volumes I and II, translated from the Arabic.

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Extra info for Averroes: Tahafut al Tahafut: The Incoherence of the Incoherence, Volumes I and II

Example text

And suppose it is asked: Are the numbers of these revolutions even or uneven or both even and uneven or neither even nor uneven? If you answer, both even and uneven, or neither even nor uneven, you say what is 43 evidently absurd. If, however, you say ‘even’ or ‘uneven’, even and uneven become uneven and even by the addition of one unit and how could infinity be one unit short? You must, therefore, draw the conclusion that they are neither even nor uneven. I say: This too is a sophistical argument.

The moment when God willed it. But conventional things do not behave like rational. The Literalists, comparing these conventional things to rational, say: This divorce is not binding and does not become effective through the realization of the condition which is posterior to the pronouncement of the divorce by the divorcer, since it would be a divorce which became effective without connexion with the act of the divorcer. But in this matter there is no relation between the concept drawn from the nature of things and that which is artificial and conventional.

But there are also changes which are inadmissible, especially according to certain ancients, though not according to others. e. so far as the need for a new determinant is concerned. Further, is this division into two agents complete, or does demonstration lead to an agent which resembles neither the natural agent nor the voluntary agent of human experience? All these are multifarious and difficult questions which need, each of them, a special examination, both in themselves and in regard to the opinions the ancients held about them.

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