Difference Between Greek and Muslim Philosophers.

Any attempts to answer the question posed must be complimented with an appropriate understanding of the schools of thought that are under discussion. It is for this purpose that I will begin by underlining the fundamental thought processes involved in Muslim and Greek philosophers and then assimilating the various approaches.

The Greek philosophers, namely Socrates depended on the method of scientific induction, reasoning and this extended to the application of logic in the later philosophers. His avowed purpose was "to fulfil the philosopher's mission of "searching into myself and other men." Socrates described the soul not in terms of mysticism but as "that in virtue of which we are called wise or foolish, good or bad." In other words, Socrates considered the soul a combination of an individual's intelligence and character.

The method of dialectic was the primary lance of the Greek method of philosophising and incurred a complete breakdown of the issue at hand to expose its nature and therefore capture an understanding. The quest for knowledge consisted a complete examination and cross-examination of the processes in the problem till a time that all reasoning was exhausted. At more times then one, religion, or the attributes of God were involved. The discussions involved took a long and arduous path that would sometimes result in recursive questioning.

Logic involved the application of inference and its application. If it is known that something is inanimate, then it is logical to assume that it will not move or evolve on its own. The method if induction relies on the fact that if the past has proved the occurrence of event A and event B always accompanying each other, then it is assumed that in the future the occurrence of A will entail the presence of B. Russell in his article refutes this assumption reducing it to mere probabilities and the fact that some probability exists that they might not occur together and therefore the principle of induction in his opinion doesn't hold. The approaches of Russell and Bacon are rational and do not depend on any sort of religious or sacred beliefs. They take a straightforward approach to their arguments and develop them accordingly.


The Muslim schools of thought are different in essence to the above mentioned. The Koran is the quoin of Muslim thought and all arguments are based in light of, or on the principles explained in the Koran. The unity of God is a central and a cardinal fact ingrained in Muslim doctrine as opposed to the polytheist and many faceted, Gods of the Greeks. Greek nature is defined to be ruled by different Gods each of whom has a different role to play in the working of the world, fire, earth, air and water, each of them have their rulers and the attributes associated with them are more or less human. This approach paves the way for an easy way out of intricate problems that arose. What was unexplainable was thought to be an unknowable event caused by the Gods, if that explanation did not hold, a explanation on the nature of God would be hatched. Muslim thought is very different in respect that it holds sacred the one-ness of God. It explains the unknowable in light of HIS word that is given in the Koran and if need be, it takes help from the Sunnah. However, some conflict arises within the Muslim structure of thought. The Asha'rite tradition makes it unacceptable to include original thought in phenomenon that the Koran or Sunnah is silent about. It is considered deviation from religion to delve in to topics that have not been discussed. Other less fundamental traditions among the Muslim thought schools allow for more freedom quoting from the Koran verses that exhort one to 'think' on matters not already explained. Greek thought, unlike the Asha'rite tradition doesn't bound itself to any such limitations. It is free to philosophise on any and all subjects since the God are not held in such high esteem to be unexplainable, as is the Muslim tradition.


Muslim theory rests on factual explanations and help is taken from the doctrine of Islam, while the Greeks rest mainly on induction, logic and perception of the world as seen by humans. The concepts of infinite and undboudness are