M.F.Akhundov’s view on J.S.Mill’s “On Liberty”

The English philosopher, John Stuart Mill (1806 –1873) writes in his book analysing freedom:

In the world of lively human beings, progress demands freedom of expression, without which progress is itself not possible.

The result of progress is called civilisation in our time. Civilisation is the general conception that, all professions, subjects, powers of state, tranquillity of the nation, and conditions of culture have been summed up by its substance. But does this progress find opportunities to develop, if individuals in society will not be prudent in their thoughts; saying whatever they want and doing whatever they please? And if his word, or work, has been accepted by other individuals in a common society, yet others will affirm this idea after thinking about it and thereby profit from it; if they do not agree, such persons will only prove their incapacities. Continue reading

Thoughts on the life of M.F. Akhundov

Mirza Fatali Akhundov (1812 – 1878) is a great author, playwright, and philosopher. Indeed, he is founder of the national theatre, literary criticism, realist narrative, democratic philosophy and aesthetics in Azerbaijan, as well as the first reformer of the Azeri alphabet. Following Nizami Gancavi and Muhammed Fuzuli, Akhundov started a “new era” in Near Eastern literature. He is the person, who opens new levels of philosophical reflection in the Islamic cultures of this region. After six comedies, not to mention a short story “Deceived Stars”, Akhundov worked as a social reformer from the 1960’s till the end of his life. This is evidenced in his fight concerning alphabetical reform as an attempt to enlighten and raise Azeri culture and language. Continue reading

Does London exist?

“The Grammar of Witchcraft” by David Parry

Mandrake of Oxford, PO Box 250, Oxford, OX1 1AP, 92pp £8, 99

A haunting conceit  – Iain Sinclair

Revolution takes many forms. It can be political, artistic and even spiritual. Perhaps, that is why this collection of poems and mini-sagas by the British Anarchist and Heathen, David Parry, is so compelling. Indeed, there is a sense of discontent with the current scheme of things on every page; a feeling that the twin evils of a stale orthodoxy and meaningless social hierarchy are somehow at the very root of every problem faced by the United Kingdom, today.

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Hurufis – Heretics of Islam

By origin, the term Hurufism comes from the Arabic word “Harf” (حرف), meaning “a letter” of the alphabet. The plural form “Hurufun” (حروف) signifying many letters, seems to be the etymological basis of Hurufism. The academic discipline, or morphology, therefore, investigating the secret of letters is called in Arabic “Ilmu-l Huruf” (الحرف علم) – or in other words, a Lettrist Science; or educational principle. But “Hurufism” has a number of semantic layers in its system of abstractions. For example, that letters and numbers can be calculated in a variety of ways to solve the mysteries of both, past and present time, as well as the future. For the Hurufis, alphabets have a power which transcends mere script. The source of Hurufism disappears into ancient ages. Some investigators have classified this ideology as an independent religion, while others describe it in terms of a mystical sect inside Islam. In which case, modern observes need to explore this school in two quiet distinct ways: Esoteric and Lettrist. This may be why Hurufi scholars tended to work in either an academic manner, or as magicians probing beneath the veil of material surfaces. On one hand, this philosophy raised the human mind to the stars. On the other hand, it gave comfort to those seeking solace in a complicated world. Either way, alphabetical letters formed the foundation upon which these enterprises were built.

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Pagans, Socialists and Humanism

king_arthur

A few evenings ago, I watched the revisionist film version of the King Arthur story; starring Clive Owen and Keira Knightley. Interestingly, even in this remake of the life of Briton’s national hero, the theme of Freedom was paramount. Indeed, in poetry, as well as legend, the tales told about this 6th Century patriot are revealing. He seems to have been a man who wore his kingship very well. He also seems to have been a warrior who fought to defend his people, his Country and his friends against violent invaders: qualities which are too often lacking in 21st Century politics; social attributes sadly still unknown in some countries and nation states.

However, I do not wish to discuss the retelling of this ancient legend, but talk about one of the topics raised by this film; the subject of nature warship commonly called “Paganism.” Continue reading

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