The Philosophical Exegesis of Mullā Ṣadrā: Analyzing Philosophical Accounts of Tafsīr Āyat al-Kursī

  • Asep Nahrul Musadad UIN Sunan Kalijaga


The main purpose of this paper is to describe an intersection between Qur’anic exegetical tradition and Islamic philosophy, with special reference to the Tafsīr Āyat al-Kursī, one of the Mullā Ṣadrā’s works on Qur’anic commentary. Ṣadrā is one of the representative exponents of a philosophical school called ḥikmah (theosophy), which developed after Ibn Rusyd period in the eastern part of the Islamic world. In order to know the unique form of interaction between Al-Qur’an and Islamic philosophy, Tafsīr Āyat al-Kursī is a representative work to be explored, particularly by studying philosophical materials in it. This research shows that the book was written when Mullā Ṣadrā had just completed the ascetic phase in Kahak, along with the tension happened between exoteric and esoteric groups. Tafsīr Āyat al-Kursī is also one of two earliest Ṣadrā’s works on Qur’anic commentary. In addition to previous commentaries, the material sources of this book consist of sufism, kalam (dialectics), and philosophy. In the philosophical frame, this book encompasses metaphysical, cosmological and eschatological issues, as well as some of the Qur’anic sciences issues discussed in an onto-epistemological way.