Ajam Podcast #15: In Defense of Satan

Episode 15 June 24, 2019 00:28:10
Ajam
Ajam Media Collective Podcast
Ajam Podcast #15: In Defense of Satan
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Show Notes

In this episode, Rustin speaks with Mohammed Rustom, Associate Professor of Islamic Studies at Carleton University. He is the author of The Triumph of Mercy: Philosophy and Scripture in Mulla Sadra (State University of New York Press, 2012). Dr. Rustom sheds light on the figure of Iblis (or Satan) in the writings of 'Ayn al-Quzat Hamadani, the 12th century Sufi mystic and jurist. While many believe Iblis to be a force of evil in Islamic theology, 'Ayn al-Quzat argued that he is, in fact, the ultimate embodiment of selfless divine love. After outlining the role of Iblis in Islamic mysticism, Dr. Rustom compares 'Ayn al-Quzat's representation with other religious and literary traditions-- including Satan of the Christian Bible, Paradise Lost, and the Brothers Karamazov. The conversation concludes with how and why 'Ayn al-Quzat was killed by the Seljuk State, as well as what we can learn about human agency and determinism from his defense of Iblis.

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