Investigating two of Al-Ghazali’s Views on Architecture based on Iḥyaʾ ʿŪlum al-Dīnʾ: Luxury and Ornaments; Materials and Components
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Abu Hamed Mohammad al-Ghazālī was a mystic, jurist and theologian, who lived in the fifth century AH, and significantly influenced Iranian culture. His greatest work is Iḥyaʾ ʿŪlum al-Dīnʾ, written in his seclusion period to revive religious knowledges, with the subject being applied knowledge, and hence the wealth of architectural information in it. The book is partly about ornaments, materials, and their ordinances. These are referred to in various parts of the book with various kinds of materials and ornaments examined. The present article starts with introducing Al-Ḡazālī’s views and thoughts, in order to better understand subsequent parts of the research. What follows is about ornaments and its sanctity or otherwise. Next comes a discussion about luxury in buildings with regard to building height and properties. In the next part the use of materials and their durability is discussed.
The research is based on interpretative approach, mainly reading and interpreting the original text of Eḥyāʾ. Other works of Al-Ḡazālī’s and other sources are used as subsidiaries, though. What this article finds is that short-lasting materials are positively considered by Al-Ghazali in Zuhd realm. Furthermore, whilst he does not mind ornamentations subject to certain conditions, they are seen as at odds with ascetic life. Ornaments in the mosque is legitimate as it is the house of God, and materials are agents for judging the building and its founders.

Article Type:
Research/Original Article
Language:
Persian
Published:
Pages:
5 - 16
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