NAFS (a.), soul. Nafs, in early Arabic poetry meant the self or person, while ruh means
breath and wind. Beginning with the Qur'an, nafs also means soul, and ruh means a special
angel messenger and a special divine quality. Only in post-Qur'anic literature are nafs and ruh
equated and both applied to the human spirit, angels and Jinn. Since the two concepts of
nafs and ruh are so closely connected, both will be considered here.

I. The qur'anic uses.

A. Nafs and its plurals anfus and nufus have five uses:

1. In most cases they mean the human self or person, e.g. III, 54: 'Let us call ... ourselves
and yourselves'; also XII, 54; LI, 20, 21. 2. In six verses nafs refers to Allah: V, 116b, 'Thou
[Allah] dost know what is in myself [says 'Isa], but I do not know what is in Thyself
(nafsika)'; also III, 27, 28; VI, 12, 54 and XX, 43. 3. One reference, XXV, 4 (cf. XIII, 17), is
to gods: 'They [aliha] do not possess for themselves (anfusihim) any harm or benefit at all!' 4.
in VI, 130 the plural is used twice to refer to the company of men and djinn: 'We have
witnessed against ourselves (anfusina)'. 5. It means the human soul: VI, 93: 'While the angels
stretch forth their hands [saying,]. Send forth your souls (anfus)'; also L, 15; LXIV, 16;
LXXIX, 40, etc. This soul has three characteristics: a. It is ammara bi 'l su', commanding to
evil (XII, 53). Like the Hebrew nefesh, the basic idea is 'the physical appetite', in Pauline
usage cuxÆ, and in the English New Testament 'flesh'. It whispers (L, 15), and is associated
with al-hawa, which, in the sense of 'desire', is always evil. It must be restrained (LIXXIX,
40) and made patient (XVIII, 27) and its greed must be feared (LIX, 9b). b. The nafs is
lawwama, i.e. it upbraids (LXXV, 2); the souls (anfus) of deserters are straitened (IX, 119). c.
The soul is addressed as mutma'inna, tranquil (LXXXIX, 27). These three terms form the
basis of much of the later Muslim ethics and psychology. It is noteworthy that nafs is not
used in connection with the angels.

B. Ruh has five uses:

1. Allah blew (nafa¦ha) of His ruh, a. into Adam, giving life to Adam's body (XV, 29;
XXXVIII, 72; XXXII, 8), and b. into Maryam for the conception of 'Isa (XXI, 91 and
LXVI, 12). Here ruh equates with rih and means the 'breath of life' (cf. Gen. ii, 7), the
creation of which belongs to Allah. 2. Four verses connect ruh with the amr of Allah, and the
meanings of both ruh and ¬mr areqdisputed. a. In XVII, 87, it is stated: 'They ask thee [O
Muhammad] about al-ruh; say: al-ruh min amri rabbi, and ye are brought but little knowledge'. b.
In XVI, 2, Allah sends down the angels with al-ruh min amrihi upon whomsoever He wills of
His creatures to say: 'Warn that the fact is, There is no God but Me, so fear'. c. In XL, 15,
Allah 'cast al-ruh min amrihi upon whomsoever He wills of His creatures to give warning'. d.
In XLII, 52: 'We revealed (awhayna) to thee [O Muhammad] ruhan min amrina; thou knewest not
what the book was, nor the faith, but We made it to be a light by which We guide
whomsoever We will of Our creatures'. Whatever meanings amr and min may have, the
contexts connect al-ruh in a. with knowledge; in b. with angels and creatures, to give warning;
in c. with creatures, for warning, and in d. with Muhammad, for knowledge, faith, light and
guidance. Therefore this ruh is special equipment from Allah for prophetic service. It reminds
one forcibly of Bezalel, who was 'filled with the spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding
and in knowledge' (Exodus, xxxv, 30, 31). 3. In IV, 169, 'Isa is called a ruh from Allah. 4. In
XCVII, 4; LXXVIII, 38 and LXX, 4, al-ruh is an associate of the angels. 5. In XXVI, 193,
al-ruh al-amin, the faithful ruh, comes down upon Muhammad's heart to reveal the qur'an. In
XIX, 17, Allah sends to Maryam 'Our ruh', who appears to her as well-made man. In XVI,
104, ruh al-qudus sent the qur'an to establish believers. Three other passages state that Allah
helps 'Isa with ruh al-qudus (II, 81; ii, 254; v, 109). This interrelation of service and title imply
the identity of this angelic messenger, who may be also the ruh of 4. Thus in the qur'an ruh
does not mean angels in general, nor man's self or person, nor his soul or spirit. The plural
does not occur.

C. Nafas, breath and wind, cognate to nafs in root and to ruh in some of its meanings, does
not occur in the q

ur'an, but is used in the early poetry (F. Krenkow, The poems of Tufail and at-Tirimmah, London
1927, 32). The verb tanaffasa (sura LXXXI, 18) is derived from that meaning, while the only
other qur'anic forms from the same radicals are fa-l-yatanafasi 'l-mutanafisuna (LXXXIII, 26)
and are derived in al-Tabari, "ami' al-bayan, Cairo 1321, xxx, 57, probably correctly, from
nafisa 'he desired'.


Umayyad poetry first uses ruh for the human soul (Kitabal-Aghani, xvi, 126, last line; Cheikho,
Le Christianisme, Beirut 1923, 338) where the qur'an had used nafs as in no. 5 above.


Of the early collections of traditions, Malik's al-Muwatta', Cairo 1339, i, 126, uses nasama,
which does not occur in the qur'an, and nafs (ii, 262) for the soul or spirit, while Ibn Hanbal's
Musnad uses nasam (vi, 424), nafs (i, 297, ii, 364, vi, 140) and nafs and ruh (iv, 287, 296).
Muslim, al-Sahih, Constantinople 1331, viii, 44, 162-3, and al-Bu¦hari, al-Sahih, Cairo 1314,
iv, 133, both use ruh for the human spirit.


The Tadj al-'arus (iv, 260) lists 15 meanings for nafs and adds two others from the Lisan
al-'Arab, as follows: spirit, blood, body, evil eye, presence, specific reality, self, tan,
haughtiness, self-magnification, purpose, disdain, the absent, desire, punishment, brother,
man. It states that most of these meanings are metaphorical. The Lisan (viii, 119-26) finds
examples of these meanings in the poetry and the qur'an. Lane's Lexicon faithfully reproduces
the material (2827b). The lexical treatments of nafs disclose these facts: 1. Any attribution to
Allah of nafs as 'soul' or 'spirit' is avoided. 2. In man, a. nafs and ruh are identified, or b. nafs
applies to the mind and ruh to life, or c, man has nafsani, two souls, oneqvital and the other
discriminative, or d. the discriminative soul is double, sometimes commanding and
sometimes forbidding.

V. The influences that affected the post-qur'anic uses of both nafs and ruh were the Christian
and Neo-Platonic ideas of ruh with human, angelic and divine applications, and the more
specifically Aristotelian psychological analysis of nafs. These influences are clearly shown in
the records of the religious controversies.

A. Al-Ash'ari [q.v.] (H. Ritter, Die dogmatischen Lehren der Anhaenger des Islam von Abu 'l-Hasan 'Ali bin Isma'il al-As'ari, Istanbul 1929) reports the Rafidiyya doctrines of the incarnation of ruhAllah in Adam
and its transmigration through the prophets and others (6, 46), as well as the conflicting
positions that man is body (djism) only, body and spirit, and spirit (ruh) only (61, 329 ff.). His
creed of the orthodox (290-297) omits any statement about the nature of man.

B. Al-Baghdadi [q.v.] (al-Farq bayn al-firaq, Cairo 1328) records the same heretical doctrines about man's
nature (28, 117 ff., 241 ff.), says the transmigration theories were held by Plato and the Jews
(254) and describes the incarnation beliefs of the Hululiyya sects [see hulul] among whom
he includes the Halladjiyya (247). His position is 'The life of Allah is without ruh and
nourishment and all the arwah are created, in opposition to the Christian doctrine of the
eternity of the Father, Son and Spirit' (325).

C. Ibn Hazm [q.v.] uses nafs and ruh interchangeably of man's soul (Kitab al-Fisal fi 'l-milal, Cairo
1317-21, v, 66). He excludes from Islam all who hold metempsychosis views, among
whom he includes the physician-philosopher Muhammad b. Zakariyya' al-Razi (i, 90 ff., iv,
187-8). He rejects absolutely the doctrine of some of the Ash'ariyya of the continual
recreation of the ruh (iv, 69). He taught that Allah created the spirits of all Adam's progeny
before the angels were commanded to prostrate to him (sura VII, 171), and that these spirits
exist in al-Barza¦h [q.v.] in the nearest heaven until the angel blows them into embryos (IV,

D. Al-Shahrastani [q.v.] (Kitabal-Milal wa 'l-nihal, ed. Cureton, i, London 1842), in his description of the
belief of the pagan Arabs concerning survival after death, does not use the terms nafs or ruh,
but says the blood becomes a wraith-like bird that visits the grave every hundred years. One
of his most important sections (203-40) deals with the orthodox and heterodox doctrines of
al-ruh. Al-Hunafa' [see hanif], or true believers, debate with al-Sabi'a [q.v.], who are dualists,
emanationists and gnostics. His account of the views of the Sabi'a faithfully reflects the
doctrines of the I¦hwan al-Safa' (Rasa'il, Bombay 1305), who taught that man is a whole
compounded of a corporeal body and a spiritual nafs (i/2, 14), and that the substance
(djawhar) of the nafs descended from the spheres (al-aflak). But al-Shahrastani rejects the
Neo-Platonic idea that human souls (nufus) are dependent upon the souls of the superhuman
spirit world (al-nufus al-ruhaniyyat) (210, 224-5), and the Hermetic doctrines that the nafs is
essentially evil (236) and that salvation consists in the release of the ruh from material bodies
(226-7). He applies the term ruhani to all spirits, good and evil (213). His description of the
natural man (216 ff.) with three souls, vegetative, animal and human, each with its own
source, place and powers, resembles that of the I¦hwan al-Safa' (Rasa'il, i/2, 48 ff.). Indeed,
the Aristotelian analysis of the human soul as given in De Anima, and handed on by
Alexander of Aphrodisias and Porphyry, had been adopted with little modification by the
Muslimqphilosophers, such as al-Kindi [q.v.], al-Farabi [q.v.] each of whom wrote a Kitab
al-Nafs, Ibn Sina [q.v.] who wrote two, and Miskawayh [q.v.], whose Tahdhib al-a¦hlaq has the
same immaterial (1) and functional (7) psychology for its ethical basis. Al-Shahrastani
achieved the long-needed interpretation of the conflicting usages of nafs and ruh in the Greek
and Christian heritage, and in the qur'an and Muslim tradition. But the philosophers, even
with his support, were not able to force the Greek psychology upon orthodox Islam. The
mutakallimun [see kalam] and the great majority of Muslims broadened the qur'anic
terminology, but retained the traditional views of the nature of the soul as a direct creation
of Allah having various qualities.


Aristotle's principle of the incorporeal character of spirit had nevertheless found a
permanent place in Muslim doctrine through the influence of Islam's greatest theologian,
al-óhazali [q.v.]. In al-Tahanawi's Dictionary of the technical terms, ed. Sprenger, Calcutta 1862,
are extracts of the doctrines of al-óhazali on man's ruh and nafs. He defines man as a spiritual
substance (djawhar ruhani), not confined in a body, nor imprinted on it, nor joined to it, nor
separated from it, just as Allah is neither without nor within the world, and likewise the
angels. It possesses knowledge and perception, and is therefore not an accident (547 at top;
cf. Tahafut al-falasifa, Cairo 1302, 72). He devotes the second section of al-Risala al-laduniyya
(Cairo 1327, 7-14) to explain the words nafs, ruh and qalb (heart), which are names for his
simple substance that is the seat of the intellectual processes. It differs from the animal ruh, a
refined but mortal body in which reside the senses. He identifies the incorporeal ruh with
al-nafs al-mutma'inna and al-ruh al-amin of the qur'an. He then uses the term nafs also for the
'flesh' or lower nature, which must be disciplined in the interests of ethics.


This position of al-óhazali's was that of the theistic philosophers in general, as well as some
of the Mu'tazila and the Shi'a, but it has never dominated Islam. The great analytical
philosopher and theologian, Fa¦hr al-Din al-Razi [q.v.], could not bring himself to accept it.
In his Mafatih al-ghayb, v, 435, commenting on sura XVII, 85, he quotes as the opinion of
al-óhazali the statement that is in the latter's Tahafut (72; cf. also al-Razi's Muhassal, Cairo
1323, 164), but on 434 (l. 9 and 8 from below) of the Mafatih, he acknowledges the strength
of the corporeal doctrine, and in his Ma'alim usul al-din, on the margin of the Muhassal, 117, he
definitely rejects as baseless (batil) the view of the philosophers that the nafs is a substance
(djawhar) which is not a body (djism) and not corporeal.


Al-Baydawi's [q.v.] system of cosmogony and psychology is given in his Tawali' al-anwar
(lithograph ed. with commentary by Abu 'l-øhana' al-Isfahani and gloss by al-"urdjani,
Istanbul 1305, 285 ff.; Brockelmann, I2, 533, S I, 742-3). He discusses 1. the classes of
incorporeal substances; 2. the heavenly intelligences; 3. the souls of the spheres; 4. the
incorporeality of human souls; 5. their creation; 6. their connection with bodies; and 7. their
survival. His cosmogony follows: Allah, because of his unity, created only one Intelligence
('aql). This Second Intelligence, that emanated first (al-sadir) from Allah, is the cause ('illa) of all
other potentialities and is not body (djism), nor original matter (hayula) nor form (sura). It is the
secondary cause (sabab) of another intelligence with soul (nafs) and sphere (falak). There
emanates from the second a third intelligence and so on to the tenth (288) who is the ruh of
sura LXXVIII,q38 (cf. al-Baydawi's Anwar al-tanzil, ed. Fleischer, ii, 383, l. 4), whose effective
influence is in the world of the elements and who is the producer of the spirits (arwah) of
mankind. Below these intelligences are the high or heavenly angels, which the philosophers
call al-nufus al-falakiyya, and the low nufus, which are in two classes: earthly angels, in control
of the simple elements and the earthly souls, such as the reasoning souls (anfus natiqa)
controlling particular persons. In addition (285), there are the incorporeal substances,
without effect or control, who are angels, some good (al-kurubiyyun) and some evil (al-shayatin)
and the djinn, who are ready for both good and evil. This is the classification he refers to in
his comment on sura II, 28 (ed. Fleischer, i, 47, 25). His psychology resembles that of
al-óhazali, whom he mentions (294). For the incorporeality of the soul (tadjarrud al-nafs) he
presents five arguments from reason, four qur'anic verses and one tradition. His
commentator remarks (300) that these prove only that the soul differs from the body. He
then argues that all nufus are created when their bodies are completed. The nafs (303) is not
embodied in and is not close to the body, but is attached as the lover to the beloved. It is
connected with that ruh which comes from the heart and is generated from the finest
nutritive particles. The reasoning nafs produces a force that flows with that ruh through the
body, producing in every organ its proper functions. These functional powers are
perceptive, which are the five external senses, and the five internal faculties of the sensus
communis, imagination, apprehension, memory and reason, and the active (al-muharrika) which
are voluntary (i¦htiyariyya) and natural (tabi'iyya, 308).


The dominant Muslim doctrine concerning the origin, nature and future of al-ruh and al-nafs
is most fully given in the Kitab al-Ruh of Ibn qayyim al-"awziyya [q.v.] (Haydarabad 21324). Of
his 21 chapters, Ibn qayyim devotes the 19th to the problem of the specific nature of the nafs
(279-342). He quotes the summaries given by al-Ash'ari (op. cit., 331-5), and by al-Razi
(Mafatih al-ghayb, v, 431-4). He denies al-Razi's statement that the mutakallimun consider man to
be simply the sensible body, and says all intelligent people hold man to be both body and
spirit. The ruh is identified with the nafs, and is itself a body, different in quiddity (al-mahiyya)
from this sensible body, of the nature of light, high, light in weight, living, moving,
interpenetrating the bodily members as water in the rose. It is created, but everlasting; it
departs temporarily from the body in sleep; when the body dies it departs for the first
judgement, returns to the body for the questioning of Munkar and Nakir [q.v.], and, except
in the cases of prophets and martyrs, remains in the grave foretasting bliss or punishment
until the Resurrection. He rejects (256) Ibn Hazm's doctrine that Adam's progeny are in
al-Barza¦h [q.v.] awaiting their time to be blown into embryos. He presents 116 evidences
for the corporeality of the ruh, 22 refutations of opposing arguments and 22 rebuttals of
objections. He represents traditional Islam.

X. The earlier Sufis had accepted the materiality of the ruh. Both al-Kushayri [q.v.] (al-Risala,
with commentary of Zakariyya' al-Ansari and gloss of al-'Arusi, Bulaq 1290, ii, 105 ff.) and
al-Hudjwiri [q.v.] (Kashf al-mahdjub, ed. Nicholson, London 1911, 196, 262) call the ruh a fine,
created substance ('ayn) or body (djism), placed in the sensible body like sap in green wood.
The nafs (al-Risala, 103 ff.; Kashf al-mahdjub, 196) is the seat of the blameworthy characteristics.
All together make the man.

In addition to the philosophical position of theqimmateriality of al-ruh that al-óhazali had
made orthodox, another interpretation of spirit developed which is essentially philosophical.
Ibn al-'Arabi [q.v.] (H.S. Nyberg, Kleinere Schriften des Ibn al-'Arabi, Leiden 1919, 15, 11, 7 ff.)
divides 'things' into three classes: Allah, Who is Absolute Existence and Creator, the world,
and an undefinable tertium quid of contingent existence that is, joined to the Eternal Reality
and is the source of the substance and the specific nature of the world. It is the universal and
common reality of all realities. Man likewise is an intermediate creation, a barza¦h (22, 42)
between Allah and the world, bringing together the Divine Reality and the created world
(21, 42) and a vicegerent connecting the eternal names and the originated forms (96). His
animal spirit (ruh) is from the blowing of the divine breath (95), and his reasoning soul (nafs
natiqa) is from the universal soul (al-nafs al-kulliyya), while his body is from the earthly
elements (95-6). Man's position as vicegerent (45-6) and his resemblance to the divine
presence (21) come from this universal soul, who has various other names, holy spirit (ruh
al-qudus), the first intelligence (51), vicegerent (¦halifa), the perfect man (45) and the ruh of the
world of command ('alam al-amr), which al-óhazali held to be Allah's direct creation (122,1).
In his Fusus, lith. ed., with commentary by al-qashani, Cairo 1309, 12 ff., he says that Allah
appears to Himself in a form which thus becomes the place of manifestation of the Divine
essence. This place receives a ruh, who is Adam, the ¦halifa and the perfect man. He discusses
(Nyberg, op. cit., 129 ff.) the essence and properties of the ruh, quoting among others the view
he says is 'attributed' to al-óhazali which is in al-Tahafut (as above). He finds the differences
of doctrine harmless, since all agree that the ruh is originated. In his tractate on the nafs and
ruh (M. Asin Palacios, Tratado acerca del conocimiento del alma y del espiritu, in Actes du XIVeme
Congres international des Orientalistes, Paris 1906, iii, 167-91), he describes how men may reach
the distinction of 'the perfect man' through the cultivation of the qualities of the ruh and the
suppression of the nafs.

Ibn al-'Arabi's contemporary, the poet Ibn al-Farid [q.v.] (Nicholson, Studies in Islamic
mysticism, Cambridge 1921, ch. iii), at times identifies his own ruh with that from which all
good emanates (al-Ta'iyya al-kubra, on margin of Diwan of Ibn al-Farid, Cairo 1319, ii, 4-5) and
with the 'pole' (qutb) upon which the heavens revolve (113, 115). Al-Kashani, the
commentator of al-Ta'iyya, explains that this identity is with the greatest spirit (ruh al-arwah)
and the greatest 'pole'. The compiler of the commentaries on the Diwan states (ii, 196) that
incarnation (hulul) and union (ittihad) with Allah are impossible, but there is real 'passing
away' (fana') and attainment (wasl) of the ruh and nafs in the nafs of Allah, for His nafs is their

'Abd al-Karim al-"ilani carries his position of existential monism on to straight animistic
pantheism. In al-Insan al-kamil, Cairo 1334, the terms ruh al-qudus, ruh al-arwah and ruhAllah stand
for a special one of the aspects of the Divine Reality (al-Haqq), not to be embraced under the
command 'be' nor created. This spirit is the divine aspect in which stand the created spirits
of all existences, sensible and intelligible (94). Existence itself subsists in the nafs of Allah, and
His nafs is His Essence (dhat). Moreover, every sensible thing has a created spirit (ruh) (194).
One of the aspects of the angel of sura. XLII, 52, who is named the command (amr) of
Allah, and who is an aspect of Allah as above, is given to the ruh mentionedqin the verse.
That angelic and divine ruh thereby becomes the Idea (haqiqa) of Muhammad (95-6) and he
thereby becomes the 'perfect man' (96, 131 ff.). The ruh which is the specific nature of the
human nafs has five names: animal, commanding to evil, instinctive (al-mulhama), reproving,
and tranquil. When the divine qualities actually describe the nafs, then the names, qualities
and essences of the gnostic ('arif) are those of the One Known (Ma'ruf) (130-1).


In geomancy ('ilm al-raml), the first 'house' (bayt) of the ummahat is called nafs because it guides
to problems concerning the soul and spirit of the inquirer, and to the beginning of affairs
(Muhammad al-Zanati, Kitab al-Fasl fi 'ilm al-raml, Cairo n.d., 7; cf. Henr. Corn. Agrippae,
Opera, Leiden, n.d., but early 17th century, 412: nam primus domus personam tenet quaerentis).
(E.E. Calverley)
(I.R. Netton)
More recent works:

R. Eklund, Life between death and resurrection according to Islam, Uppsala 1941; M.G. Zubaid
Ahmad, The Islamic conception of the soul, in Jnal. of the Ganganatha Kha Res. Inst., i (1943), 165-75;
E.E. Calverley, Doctrines of the soul (nafs and ruh) in Islam, in MW, xxxiii (1943), 254-64; L.
Massignon, L'idee de l'esprit dans l'Islam, in Eranos-Jahrbuch, xiii (1945), 277-82; Kindi, R. fi
'l-qawl fi 'l-nafs al-mu¦htasar min KitabAristu wa-Flatun wa-sa'ir al-falasifa, in M.A.H. Abu Rida (ed.),
Rasa'il al-Kindi al-falsafiyya, Cairo 1950, i, 270-80, see also 281-2; F. Rahman, Avicenna's
psychology, Oxford 1952; A.F. Al-Ahouani, Ahwal al-nafs, R. fi 'l-nafs wa-baqa'iha wa-ma'adiha, in
Les etats de l'ame par Avicenne, Cairo 1952, 45-142; idem, R. fi 'l-kalam 'ala 'l-nafs al-natiqa, in ibid.,
195-9; idem, R. fi Ma'rifat al-nafs al-natiqa wa-ahwaliha, in ibid., 181-92; H.Z. Ülken, Masa'il 'an
ahwal al-ruh, in Les opuscules d'Ibn Sina et le livre de la difference entre l'esprit et l'ame par Qosta b. Luqa,
Istanbul 1953, 68-70; idem, R. fi 'l-nafs wa-baqa'iha wa-ma'adiha, in ibid., 109-54; S.H. Ma'sumi
(tr.), A treatise on the soul ascribed to Ibn-i-Sina [incs. Ar. text of the Risala fi 'l-nafs] in S.M.
'Abdullah (ed.), Shafi' presentation volume, Lahore 1955, 139-44; Al-Ahouani, Treatise concerning
our knowledge of the rational soul and its different states, in Islamic philosophy, Cairo 1957, 157-72;
Rahman (ed.), Avicenna's De Anima (Arabic text) (being the psychological part of Kitab al-Shifa'), London
1959; M.E. Marmura, Avicenna and the problem of the infinite number of souls, in Mediaeval Studies,
xxii (1960), 232-9; M.S. Evrin, Eschatology in Islam, Istanbul 1960; F. Refoule, Immortalite de
l'ame et resurrection de la chair, in RHR, clxiii (1963), 11-52; R. 'Ubayd, al-Insan ruh la djasad, Cairo
1964; L.E. Goodman, A note on Avicenna's theory of the substantiality of the soul, in Philosophical
Forum, i (1969), 547-54; A.S. Trit-qton, Man, nafs, ruh, 'aql, in BSOAS, xxxiv (1971), 491-5;
Susanne Diwald, Die Seele und ihre 'geistigen' Kraefte im K. Ikhwan as-Safa, in S.M. Stern, A.
Hourani and Vivian Brown (eds.), Islamic philosophy and the classical tradition, Oxford 1972,
49-61; Ibn Sina, Avicenna Latinus: Liber De Anima seu Sextus De Naturalibus I, II, III, ed. crit. de la
trad. Latine medievale par S. van Riet, Louvain-Leiden 1972; Parviz Morewedge, Ibn Sina's
concept of the self, in Philos. Forum, iv/1 (1972), 49-73; Mustafa Mahmud, al-Ruh wa 'l-djasad, Beirut
1974; J.R. Michot, 'L'epitre de la resurrection' des Ikhwan al-Safa', in Bull. de Philos. Medievale
(Louvain), xvi-xvii (1974-5), 114-48; Goodman, Razi's myth of the fall of the soul: its function in his
philosophy, in G.F. Hourani (ed.), Essays on Islamic philosophy and science, Albany 1975, 25-40;
Diwald, Arabische Philosophie und Wissenschaft in der Enzyklopaedie Kitab IÉwan as-safa' (III). Die Lehre
von Seele und Intellekt, Wiesbaden 1975; R. Arnaldez, L'ame et le monde dans le systeme philosophique
de Farabi, in SI, xliii (1976), 53-63; H. Corbin, Spiritual body and celestial earth, Princeton 1977,
esp. 176-9, 180-9; P. Nwyia, Corps et esprit dans la mystique musulmane, in Studia Missionalia, xxvi
(1977), 165-89; M.S. Seale, An Arab's concern with life after death, in Qur'an and Bible. Studies in
interpretation and dialogue, London 1978, 90-8; J.I. Smith, The understanding of nafs and ruh in
contemporary Muslim considerations of the nature of sleep and death, in MW, xlix (1979), 151-62; J.I.
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Muhammad Abul Quasem, Salvation of the soul and Islamic devotions, Bangi-London 1981-4;
Michot, Avicenne et la destinee humaine. Apropos de la resurrection des corps, in Revue Philos. de Louvain,
lxxix (1981), 453-83; idem, Les questions sur les etats de l'esprit: problemes d'attribution et essai de
traduction critique, in Bull. de Philos. Medievale, xxiv (1982), 44-53; Therese-Anne Druart,
Imagination and the soul-body problem in Arabic philosophy in A.T. Tymieniecka (ed.), Soul and body in
Husserlian phenomenology, in Analecta Husserliana. The Yearbook of Phenomenological Research, xvi
(1983), Dordrecht, Boston and Lancaster, 327-42; O.N. Mohammed, Averroes' doctrine of
immortality: a matter of controversy, Waterloo, Ontario 1984; S. Gomez Nogales, Averroes (Abu-l
Walid Mohammed ibn Rushd), Epitome de Anima, Madrid 1985 [contains Spanish tr. of Ibn
Rushd's text]; Michot, Avicenna's letter on the disappearance of the vain intelligible forms after death, in
Bull. de Philos. Medievale, xxvii (1985), 94-103; idem, 'L'epitre sur la connaissance de l'ame rationelle
et de ses etats' attribuee a Avicenne, in Revue Philos. de Louvain, lxxxii (1984), 479-99; idem, Prophetie
et divination selon Avicenne. Presentation, essai de traduction critique et index de l'epitre de l'ame et de la
sphere, in ibid., lxxxiii (1985), 507-36; idem, La destinee de l'homme selon Avicenne, Louvain 1986;
Abderrahman Tlili, La psychologie 'al-nafs' chez deux Mu'tazilites: al-'Allaf et al-Nazzam, in
Al-Muntaka/Al-Muntaqa, iii/I/9 (1986), 29-39; idem, Sur la transmigration et l'immortalite en terre
d'Islam, in ibid., iii/II-III/10-11 (1987), 85-98; Arnaldez, La doctrine de l'ame dans la philosophie
d'Abu l'Barakat al-Baghdadi, in SI, lxvi (1987), 105-12; Ch. Genequand, Platonism and hermetism
in al-Kindi's Fi al-nafs, in Zeitschr. für Geschichte der arabisch-islamischen Wissenschaften, iv (1987-8),
1-18; Druart, The soul and body problem. Avicenna and Descartes, in eadem (ed.), Arabic philosophy
and the West. Continuity and interaction, Washington 1988, 27-49; C. Glasse, Nafs and Ruh, in
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Toten, in Kaàkul, eds. E. Wagner and K. RKhrborn, Wiesbaden 1989, 141-56.


In addition to the references in the article, see especially D.B. Macdonald, The development of
the idea of spirit in Islam, in AO, ix (1931), 307-51 (repr. in MW, xxii [1932], 25-42, 153-68)
upon which much of the present article is based

Muslim philosophical psychology goes back to Aristotle's De Anima (best ed. by R.D.
Hicks, Cambridge 1907)

for the early metempsychosis beliefs, see I. Friedlaender, The heterodoxies of the Shiites, in
JAOS, xxviii (1907), 1-80, xxix, 1-183

for the relation between Aristotle and Ibn Sina, see S. Landauer, Die Psychologie des Ibn Sina,
in ZDMG, xxix (1875), 335-418

English tr. by A.E. van Dyck, Avicenna's offering to the Prince, Verona 1906

M. Horten, Die philosophischen Systeme im Islam, Bonn 1912

T.J. de Boer, The history of philosophy in Islam, London 1903.

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Source: from the Encyclopedia of Islam --© 1999 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands