Allameh Tabātabāi (1904-1981)

Seyed Mohammad Hossein Tabatabai

Seyed Mohammad Hossein TabātabāiSeyed Mohammad Hossein Tabatabai, born 17 March 1904 a Tabriz, known as Allameh Tabatabai, was an Iranian exegete, philosopher, jurist, mystic and Islamologist.

Its importance is due to the revival of philosophy and exegesis in the Shiite theological schools after the period Safavid.

Seyed Mohammad Hossein, after elementary studies that included the Koran and literature texts and also learning the techniques of calligraphy, he devoted himself to the study of religious sciences in Tabriz and that of Islamic sciences and not as jurisprudence and principles, philosophy , mathematics, ethics and mysticism in Najaf where he remained ten years.

Due to economic problems he was forced to return to Iran and devote himself to agriculture for ten years in the village of Shādābād near Tabriz.

Later he began the lessons of exegesis of the Qur'an and of philosophy at Qom and precisely the topics of these commentary classes of the Qur'an constitute the introduction of the collection of "Tafsir Al-mizān", an extraordinary exegesis that engaged him for almost 17 years .

At that time he also took part in Tehrān in scientific and philosophical study sessions on philosophical, mystical, religions and Islamology issues that took place under his supervision.

These meetings were attended by Henry Corbin, Seyed Hossein Nasr, Dāriush Shayegān and others and were presided over by Allameh Tabatabai.

During these continuous trips to Tehrān he came into contact with lovers of Islamic philosophy and culture and sometimes even discussed with opponents of religion and philosophy.

The meetings between him and Corbin were organized for twenty years each autumn in the presence of a group of philosophical enthusiasts and in them were discussed crucial topics concerning religion and philosophy.

According to Dr. Seyed Hossein Nasr, these meetings were at such a high level and with such a vast horizon in today's Islamic world that they have no equal; one could even say that since the Middle Ages, when the encounter between thought and the original spirituality between Islam and Christianity was interrupted, such contact between the Islamic East and the West had not been realized.

His students such as Ayatollah Motahari, Ayatollah Javādi Āmeli, Ayatollah Mesbāh Yazdi and Ayatollah Behehsti can be considered among the most influential and well-known contemporary exponents of Shiite clergy in Iran.

His scientific sessions with Henry Corbin, a French philosopher and Islamist, prepared the ground for making known to Shiism to Europeans.
There are many scientific works of Tabātabāi, of which a part is reported below:
"Tafsir-e Al-mizān" (20 volumes in Arabic)
"Osul-e falsafe va ravesh-e realism" (Principles of philosophy and method of realism, which includes 14 philosophical articles)
"Hāshiye bar Asfār-e Sadr al Din Shirāzi" (Glosse ad Al-asfār)
"Sanan Al Nabi" (Traditions of the Prophet) (S)
"Shi'ah dar Eslām" (Shiite Islam)
"Hāshiye bar Kifāye al-osul" (Glosse at work Al- Kifāyah)

Numerous treatises on the following topics: power and act, divine attributes, divine acts, on the means, on the morphology, on the syntax, on the man before the world, in the world and after the world, on the prophecies and the interpretation of dreams, on Islamic government etc .. (collection of 26 treated).

"Dialogue with Professor Henry Corbin", "Islamic teaching", "Social relations in Islam", "Man and society and social growth", "Islamic analysis", "Teaching of religion", "Poem on the method of writing Nasta'liq calligraphy "," The Qur'an in Islam "," Exegesis of "Ravāii Al-bayān", "Glosse al Behār Al-anwār", "Canzoniere of Persian poems" Mehr-e afrukhte ", "Bidāyat al-hikmah" (beginning of philosophy) "Nihāyat al-hikmah", (End of philosophy), "Revelation or esoteric conscience", "Islam and contemporary man", "Government in Islam", "Ali and the Metaphysics".

Numerous articles appeared in various journals such as "The Shia Doctrine, Lectures on Islamic Doctrine and Guide to the Holy Book".
After the death of Allāmeh Tabātabāi, numerous conferences were held with the aim of studying, making known his life and his thoughts. Every year the national award that bears his name is attributed to the authoritative professors of the Universities and to the best researchers of Iran.

A television series has been produced about the life and activity of this character and also squares and streets, some teaching and study centers bear his name and among these the most important is the Allāmeh Tabātabāi University of Tehrān.

Many books have been written about him. Tabātabāi switched off the 15 November 1981 to Qom and was buried in the same city next to the Hazrat-e Masoumeh mausoleum.




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