Mir Fendereski

Mir Fendereski

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Mir Fendereski (From 1562 to 1640) was a renowned Iranian philosopher, poet and mystic of the Safavid era. His full name is given as Sayyed Mir Abulqasim Astarabadi (Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

: سید ابولقاسم استرآبادی), and he is famously known as Fendereski. He lived for a while in Isfahan at the same time as Mir Damad
Mir Damad
Mir Damad , known also as Mir Mohammad Baqer Esterabadi, or Asterabadi, was an Iranian philosopher in the Neoplatonizing Islamic Peripatetic traditions of Avicenna and Suhrawardi, a scholar of the traditional Islamic sciences, and foremost figure , of the cultural renaissance of Iran undertaken...

, spent a great part of his life in India among yogis and Zoroastrians, and learnt certain things from them. He was patronized by both the Safavid and Mogul
Mughal Empire
The Mughal Empire ,‎ or Mogul Empire in traditional English usage, was an imperial power from the Indian Subcontinent. The Mughal emperors were descendants of the Timurids...

 courts. The famous Persian philosopher Mulla Sadra
Mulla Sadra
Ṣadr ad-Dīn Muḥammad Shīrāzī also called Mulla Sadrā was a Persian Shia Islamic philosopher, theologian and ‘Ālim who led the Iranian cultural renaissance in the 17th century...

 also studied under him.


Mir Fendereski remains a mysterious and enigmatic figure about whom we know very little. He was probably born around 1562-1563 and that he died at the ripe age of eighty.

Mir Fendereski was trained in the works of Avicenna
Abū ʿAlī al-Ḥusayn ibn ʿAbd Allāh ibn Sīnā , commonly known as Ibn Sīnā or by his Latinized name Avicenna, was a Persian polymath, who wrote almost 450 treatises on a wide range of subjects, of which around 240 have survived...

 as he thought the Avicennian medical and philosophical compendiums of al-Qanun (The Canon) and Al-Shifa (The Cure) in Isfahan.


A number of works are attributed to him, although these have not been studied in detail. He made extensive commentary on the Persian translation of the Mahabharata
The Mahabharata is one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India and Nepal, the other being the Ramayana. The epic is part of itihasa....

 (Razm-Nama in Persian) and the philosophical text of the Yoga Vaishtaha. "Resâle Sanaie" , "Resâleh dar kimiyâ" and "Šahre ketabe mahârat", in Persian language, are some of his most famous works. Also his criticism of the Persian translation of Yoga Vaishtaha indicates he was familiar with Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...


He was also a poet and composed a long philosophical ode (qaṣida ḥekmiya) in imitation of and response to the Persian Ismaʿili thinker Nasir Khusraw
Nasir Khusraw
Abu Mo’in Hamid ad-Din Nasir ibn Khusraw al-Qubadiani or Nāsir Khusraw Qubādiyānī [also spelled as Nasir Khusrow and Naser Khosrow] Abu Mo’in Hamid ad-Din Nasir ibn Khusraw al-Qubadiani or Nāsir Khusraw Qubādiyānī [also spelled as Nasir Khusrow and Naser Khosrow] Abu Mo’in Hamid ad-Din Nasir ibn...

. His best-known work is titled al-Resāla al-ṣenāʿiya, an examination of the arts and professions within an ideal society. The importance of this treatise is that it combines a number of genres and subject areas: political and ethical thought, mirrors-for-princes, metaphysics, and the critical subject of the classifications of the sciences.

External links

Encyclopædia Iranica, "Mir Fenderski" by Sajjad. H. Rizvi http://www.iranica.com/newsite/articles/ot_grp8/ot_mirfenderes_20050615.html

Fazlur Rahman, The Philosophy of Mullā Ṣadrā (Ṣadr Al-Dīn Al-Shirāzī), SUNY Press, 1975

"The Place of the School of Isfahan in Islamic Philosophy and Sufism," in The Heritage of Sufism, Volume III: Late Classical Persianate Sufism (1501–1750), ed. L. Lewisohn and D. Morgan, Oxford, 1999, pp. 3–15.

See also

  • List of Iranian scientists
  • Iranian philosophy
    Iranian philosophy
    Iranian philosophy or Persian philosophy can be traced back as far as to Old Iranian philosophical traditions and thoughts which originated in ancient Indo-Iranian roots and were considerably influenced by Zarathustra's teachings...

  • Philosophers