Al-isharat wa al-tanbihat

Al-Isharat wa’l-tanbihat (Arabic: الإشارات والتنبيهات, "The Book of Directives and Remarks") is apparently is the one of the last books of Avicenna which is written in Arabic .[1]


Main article: Avicenna

Avicenna was born in Afsanah at 980, a village near Bukhara. His father counted as ruler of a region by the name of keramaytan. Avicenna along with his family after moving to Bukhara, continued his studies. According to Nasr, Avicenna had many teachers including Nātelī physicians Abū Manṣūr Qomrī and Abū Sahl Masīḥī. Avicenna wrote nearly 250 works on diverse sciences in medieval period including long and short treatises such as the Daneshnameh Alaei (The Book of Science Dedicated to 'Alii' al-Dawlah). Avicenna wrote Isharat when he was under the criticism of certain literary scholars, showing his skill in Arabic language by a philosophy book as Isharat. Nasr refers to the book of Isharat as the last and greatest masterpiece of Avicenna.[2]


Isharat described as comprehensive and mature book by Avicenna. This book wholly divided into two parts. The first part is about logic which in turn divided to ten subparts. Second part is about philosophy which is in turn separated into ten subparts.Avicenna himself calls the subparts of logic as Nahj or style and philosophy part as Namat .Inanti divided it to four parts namely logic,physics, metaphysics and Sufism. the titles of Al Isharat is drawn from the titles of the majority of chapters in the whole work.[3]

Title of book

The word of isharat is a synonym of signs, remarks, indications and hints. Also Tanbihat is synonym with words such as admonitions, warnings and caution. According to Inati, isharat signifies on Avicenna own views. In other words, when Ibn sina refers to isharah, he shows his opinion. When he refers to Tanbihat, he shows the faults of other philosophers in one subject. Sometimes Avicenna refers to isharah by words like A follow up, a closing comment and wish . also he refers to tanbiha by a word like delusion.[4]


Ibn Sina wrote the book such a way that just philosophers understand it. Avicenna himself points out that this book is not suitable for non-philosophers and those who are of sharp-mind has right to dealth with the book.[5]


Many commentaries have been written about this book and most famous ones are Nasir al-Din al-Tusi Tusi (Sharh al-isharat) and Imam Fakhr Razi and an explanation and description of Allame Hassan Hasanzadeh Amoli.[6]


This book is translated into Persian and English and other languages. Shams Inati and keven brown translate some parts of book to English.[7]


  1. Sharaf Khorasani,great encyclopedia of islam, vol 1, p.6.1367 solar
  2. seyyed hossein Nasr, three Muslim Sages, p.23,1997
  3. Shams Inati,1996.p.1
  4. Shams Inati,1996.p.1
  5. Shams Inati,1996.p.2
  6. (Salavati Abdollah & 1382 solar p.170)
  7. (Inati 1996)


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