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Riyadh Newspaper | “Arabic Narration”… A project to revive Arab history and heritage

Organized by the King Faisal Center for Research and Studies

“Arabic Narration”… A project to revive Arab history and heritage

Prince of Riyadh and Turki Al-Faisal during the inauguration of “Arabic Narration”

George Saliba, a Lebanese-born thinker and professor of Arab and Islamic sciences at Columbia University and the American University of Beirut, called for non-recognition of the European narrative classic in interpreting beginnings and endings with regard to the origins of science references and sources in the world and in Europe in particular, and demanded the necessity of presenting an alternative interpretation based on facts to correct conditions and restore the right to normal.

Saliba, in a lecture he gave as part of the “Arabic Narration” event organized by the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies, questioned the narrative that claims that the modern scientific era was built on the shoulders of Europeans in the Renaissance, indicating that it talks about the European Renaissance as if it were the era of the establishment of modern science, explaining That is contrary to the truth, based on the scientific reference of a number of scholars from the era of the Renaissance who refer to Arab origins.

Saliba stressed the need to criticize this erroneous narrative, stressing that it is not explained by what we know about the sources in the beginnings, as those who adopt this narrative believe that there was no interest in science at the beginning of the Abbasid era, and in his opinion – Saliba – this narrative classic does not explain or answer the question. The question: Why did the era of science end in the Abbasid era? Why is it based in Europe? Nor does it see any reason for any other civilization to enter into the element of the modern era to which they claim to belong.

Shehata: Arab and Islamic philosophy is rich and not well studied

Saliba reviewed the problems of beginnings, through the message of Al-Biruni (who is the Muslim researcher Abu Al-Rayhan Muhammad bin Ahmad Al-Biruni, one of the greatest scholars known to the Islamic era in the Middle Ages, who was a traveler, philosopher, astronomer, geographer, geologist, pharmacist, historian and translator, and was described as among the greatest minds that Islamic culture knew And he said about the rotation of the earth around its axis in his book: The Key to Astronomy, and he also wrote more than one hundred and twenty books).

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Where Saliba explained that the sources tell us about these problems through that message. In the book “The Remaining Antiquities of the Empty Centuries”, he discussed the establishment of the Abbasid state itself and the city of Baghdad itself, about which he says that the foundation stone for it was laid in the year 762 AD by the Abbasid caliph. Abi Jaafar Al-Mansur, but before laying the foundation stone he consulted scholars including: Al-Fazari, Abu Muhammad Al-Hassan bin Musa Al-Nawbakhti, and Ibn Athari Al-Yahudi, who is a Jewish astronomer and astrologer born in Basra, Iraq.

According to Saliba, the astronomer Al-Fazari explains the horoscope, the movements of the planets, and the ways to place the planets in drawings in their places, indicating that the movements of the planets are considered a complex process of accurate astronomical calculations, asking: Who taught these scientists these sciences, the movements of the planets and the mathematical astronomical calculations, knowing that they were In the early Abbasid era?!

Based on that, Saliba says: “So the general conclusion confirms that these scholars and the sciences that they learned were from before the Abbasid era and were not from the occult,” stressing that there is a conclusion that there were sciences before that that taught these scholars the method of arithmetic operations, and therefore there were sciences A precedent for the Abbasid era, and he noted that the Abbasid era witnessed an author such as Abi Abdullah Muhammad bin Musa Al-Khwarizmi, a Muslim mathematician, astronomer and geographer, and he is considered one of the first Muslim mathematicians and nicknamed Abu Jaafar, and it was said that he was born around 164 AH 781 AD. And the interview), and he is the owner of the word (algebra), and (algebra) is a word that did not appear in the Greek sciences or in the Indian sciences from which they derived civilization.

Saliba: The narrative of the establishment of the scientific age on the shoulders of Europeans is wrong

A new historical resurrection

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For his part, Dr. Joseph Kchichian, a non-resident researcher at the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies, emphasized that the “Arabic Narration” project is a new revival of the history, heritage and awareness of the Arab world, not only for the current new but also for all future generations, to present a true history in honor of the ancestors, their glories, their civilization and what they have achieved. They presented it from sciences in various fields over time.

Kechichian stressed the importance of the “Arabic Narration” project, which lies in the fact that it will be the source of nourishment for the new generation and will provide it with experiences, information and skills that were absent from it for a long period of time, so that it can arm itself with evolutionary tools and keep pace with the future vision, focusing on history, heritage, culture and science.

Kchichian: History is a living being that runs in the veins of the Arab nation

And he stressed that whoever loses his culture will not be able to develop himself and influence the lives of others and the world, calling for the importance of gaining good experience and the ability to apply new ethics and values ​​by benefiting from history, heritage, science and heritage, indicating that history does not die, and it is a living organism that runs in the veins of the nation Arabic for generations.

Keshchian noted the importance of young people not relying solely on the Google search engine, because – in his opinion – it is not sufficient to provide explanations for many cultural, civilizational and historical legacies.

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For his part, researcher Dr. Ayman Shehata from South College at the University of London commented: “I work in the field of Arabic philosophy, which had a role in Arab and Islamic history, and I find a link between it and the idea of ​​(Arabic narrative) adopted by the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies. Pointing out that Arab and Islamic philosophy is very rich, but it has not been studied enough, as the interest in it in the Arab world did not find sufficient luck, stressing the need to allocate greater support for it to benefit from it in such a project as “Arabic Narration.”

The researcher Shehata expected that the idea of ​​”Arabic narration” would enrich the Arab library with new studies to preserve and authenticate the Arab heritage, explaining that there is a wide scope for linking heritage with political and intellectual history.

George Saliba

Joseph Kchichian