[Q-ID0087] Mind & Body – two different entities or the same thing?

QUESTION:

What does Islam say about the mind and the body? Does Islam say that the two are different or that they are the same thing? Different philosophical ideals emerged which are on both sides of the argument. For example a famous non-Muslim philosopher, Descartes, stated that both are different entities in which the mind is the immaterial object while the body is just an extension meaning just the limbs which has no meaning. . 

ANSWER:

The intellect is an intrinsic essential nature (jawhar) that is free from a body, however it is attached to the body. Where it dwells is a matter of dispute, some stating it is in the brain and others saying it is in the heart.

It has also been stated that it is a light in the heart by which the truth and falsehood is determined. Variant definitions have been forwarded by different scholars and this is a matter of dispute and not agreement (ijma’). For further simple definitions see al-Ta’rifat of Sayyid A’li bin Muhammad Sharif Jurjani (رحمة الله عليه).

Allah knows best.

Answered by Shaykh Muhammad Asrar Rashid

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