A classic polymath-philosopher, physician, astronomer, mathematician, and poet, Abu Bakr Mohammad Ibn Yahyah Ibn Al Sayigh Al Tujibi Ibn Bajjah, better known as Ibn Bajjah -- Avempace in the Latinised version -- was a master of logic.
Ibn Bajjah worked in Court as a minister [wazir] and served the sultan's brother-in-law Abu Bakr aACAyAli Ibn Ibrahim Al Sahrawi, better known as Ibn Tifilwit, then the Governor of Saragossa.
Notwithstanding his checkered life, which was typical of thinkers in medieval times, and giving credit to the Almoravids whose leaders "based their legitimacy on religious observance and were therefore hostile to philosophy and other disciplines that could challenge their concept of orthodoxy", Ibn Bajjah found solace in their court bon in al-Andalus as well as North Africa.
The Almoravids in particular believed that Al Andalus was the perfect crucible for the development of fresh ideas, which was why Ibn Bajjah and others were encouraged to proceed with their work.
According to Ibn Bajjah, philosophy embraced all beings "insofar as it knows them with convincing science" that, by necessity, required the existence of certainty in knowledge and universality in scope.
Saeed Bin Suroor, able to boast a 50 per cent strike-rate (five winners from ten runners) with two-year-olds on this course in recent seasons, added to that tally, courtesy of Ibn Bajjah
in the 1m maiden.
One wonders, for example, why nothing is said of Ibn Tufayl and his delightful philosophical novel, Hayy ibn Yaqzan (Living the Son of Awakened), or of Ibn Bajjah
and his Tadbir al-Mutawahhid (Governance of the Solitary).
Ibn Sina's views were added to those of Ibn al-Haytham, who spoke of momentum, as well as the theories of Ibn Bajjah
and others, and they played a critical role in showing the weakness of Aristotelian physics in explaining projectile motion and in preparing the ground for Galileo's rejection of that physics.
Islamic Philosophers in the Western Lands of Islam" covers Ibn Masarrah, Ibn Bajjah
, Ibn Tufayl, Ibn Rushd, Ibn Sab in, and Ibn Khaldun.
In his introduction, the author presents useful summaries of views held by major philosophers, ranging from Al Farabi to Ibn Sina, and from Al Gazzali to Ibn Bajjah
Although duty required that he study the law and serve his masters as a jurist, Ibn Rushd was attracted by the philosophy of Ibn Bajjah
, who may have tutored him, and actually enrolled in medical school under Abu Ja'far Ibn Harun in Trujillo, a key Arab fortress southwest of Madrid.
Important scholars, such as Ibn Tufail, Ibn Bajjah
and Ibn Rushd -- the two latter also known in the West as Avempace and Averroes respectively -- introduced and developed physics, political science, philosophy, jurisprudence, medicine, architecture, psychology, music, poetry and literature.