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Encyclopedia > Mohsen Kadivar
Mohsen Kadivar
Mohsen Kadivar

Mohsen Kadivar (محسن کدیور, born June 7, 1959) is an Iranian Islamic philosopher, Shia cleric and activist. Image File history File links Mohsen Kadivar 2004 © Iran Daily, permission to use with credits given. ... June 7 is the 158th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (159th in leap years), with 207 days remaining. ... 1959 (MCMLIX) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Shiʻa Islam (Arabic شيعى follower; English has traditionally used Shiite) makes up the second largest sect of believers in Islam, constituting about 30%–35% of all Muslim. ... A cleric is: A member of the clergy of a religion, especially one that has trained or ordained priests, preachers, or other religious professionals; or A member of a character class in Dungeons & Dragons and similar fantasy role-playing games. ...

Kadivar married in 1981 and has four children. 1981 (MCMLXXXI) was a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Education and academic carrier

After completing his primary and secondary education in Shiraz, Mohsen Kadivar was admitted into electronic engineering at Shiraz University in 1977. During this time, Kadivar became active politically and was arrested in May 1978 in Shiraz because of his political beliefs. He switched his focus to religious education and began attending Shiraz Seminary in 1980. He moved to Qom in 1981 to pursue his studies in fiqh and philosophy. In Qom, he was taught by prominent teachers like Ayatollah Hossein-Ali Montazeri. Kadivar graduated with a degree in ijtihad in 1997. Then he went on to get his PhD in Islamic philosophy and theology from Tarbiat Modares University in Tehran in 1999. Eram Garden, Shiraz most popular garden. ... Qom is famous for the shrine of Hazrat Masoumeh, first built in the late 8th century. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Qom is famous for the shrine of Hazrat Masoumeh, first built in the late 8th century. ... Ayatollah Hossein-Ali Montazeri (حسینعلی منتظری in Persian) was one of the leaders of the Islamic Revolution in Iran. ... Tarbiat Modares University Logo Tarbiat Modares University is located in Tehran, Persia (Iran). ... Tehran (IPA: ; Persian: تهران, also transliterated as Teheran or Tehrān), population 7,160,094 (metropolitan: 14,000,000[citation needed]), and a land area of 658 square kilometers, is the capital city of Iran and the center of Tehran Province. ...

Kadivar started his career as a teacher teaching fiqh and Islamic philosophy at Qom Seminary. Later he began teaching Islamic philosophy and theology at Imam Sadegh University, Mofid University, and Shahid Beheshti University. Currently, he is a faculty member of the Department of Philosophy at Tarbiat Modares University. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Imam Sadeq University is a university in Tehran, Iran. ... Mofid University Logo Mofid University is a university located in Qum, Iran. ... Shahid Beheshti University is a university located in north of Tehran. ... Tarbiat Modares University Logo Tarbiat Modares University is located in Tehran, Persia (Iran). ...

Kadivar has been writing extensively in various Iranian journals and he has 100 articles to his name. He has published twelve books including the Theories of State in Shiite Fiqh, which has been translated into Arabic. He is also a prominent critic of the Islamic Republic system in Iran. Because of his criticisms, he was arrested by the government of Iran and was sentenced to 18 months at Evin Prison, Tehran. He was released on July 17, 2000. Currently, he is active within the various reform movements of Iran. An Islamic republic in its modern context has come to mean several things. ... Evin Prison (زندان اوین) is a prison in Iran, located in the north of Tehran. ...

Research works and contributions

Of nine published books of Kadivar, four are on political theology. Of these, three comprise a trilogy: The first volume of the trilogy, entitled "The Theories of State in the Shiite Jurisprudence" (Nazarrieh haye Doulat dar Figh'h e Shi'eh) encompasses a broad typology of religious opinions on the desired or permissible types of government in Shiite theology. Every single instance in this typology is either proposed or endorsed by the highest authorities in Shiite jurisprudence. Here is a summary of this typology:[1] Theology (Greek θεος, theos, God, + λογος, logos, word or reason) means reasoned discourse concerning religion, spirituality and God. ...

A. Theories of State based on Immediate Divine Legitimacy Four theocratic types, in chronological order:

1. "Appointed Mandate of Jurisconsult" in Religious Matters (Shari'at) along with the Monarchic Mandate of Muslim Potentates in Secular Matters (Saltanat E Mashrou'eh) Advocates: Mohammad Bagher Majlesi, Mirza ye Ghomi, Seyed e Kashfi, Sheikh Fadl ollah Nouri, Ayatollah Abdolkarim Haeri Yazdi.

2. "General Appointed Mandate of Jurissonsults" (Velayat E Entesabi Ye Ammeh) Advocates: Molla Ahmad Naraghi, Sheikh Mohammad Hassan Najafi (Saheb Javaher) Ayatollahs Borujerdi,Golpayegani, Khomeini, (before the revolution)

3. "General Appointed Mandate of the Council of the 'Sources of Imitation' " (Velayat E Entesabi Ye Ammeh Ye Shora Ye Marje'eh Taghlid) Advocates: Ayatollahs: Javadi Amoli, Beheshti, Taheri Khorram Abadi

4. "Absolute Appointed Mandate of Jurisconsult" (Velayat e Entesabi ye Motlaghe ye Faghihan) Advocate: Ayatollah Khomeini (after revolution)

B. Theories of State Based on Divine-popular Legitimacy Five democratic types, in chronological order:

5. "Constitutional State" (with the permission and supervision of Jurisprudents) (Dowlat e Mashrouteh) Advocates: Sheikh Esma'il Mahllati, Ayatollahs: Mazandarani, Tehrani, Tabataba'i, Khorasani, Na'ini

6. "Popular Stewardship along with Clerical Oversight" (Khelafat e Mardom ba Nezarat e Marjaiat) Advocate: Ayatollah Mohammad Bagher Sadr

7. "Elective Limited Mandate of Jurisprudents" (Velayat e Entekhabi ye Moghayyadeh ye Faghih) Advocate: Ayatollahs Motahhari, Montazeri

8. "Islamic elective State" (Dowlat e Entekhabi ye Eslami) Advocate: Ayatollah Mohammad Bagher Sadr

9. "Collective Government by Proxy" (Vekalat e Malekan e Shakhsi ye Mosha)" Advocate: Ayatollah Mehdi Ha'eri Yazdi

The significance of this typology in the context of the contemporary Iranian political discourse cannot be overestimated. Shiite political theology, which the ruling clerics present as a monolith, an obelisk on which the hieroglyph of absolute mandate of the jurisconsult "Velayat e Motlaghe ye Faghih" is etched, turns into a beguiling prism in Kadivar's nimble hands, reflecting no less than nine distinct possible forms of government, all proposed and supported by most revered religious scholars and texts. Having revealed a spectrum of authoritative options for Islamic society, Kadivar launches his criticism of the most absolutist thesis among them, that is Ayatollah Khomeini's theology.[2]

The second volume of the trilogy, is entitled "Hokumat e Vela'i" or Government by mandate. This 432-page opus which Kadivar considers as the heart of his trilogy and the most scholarly book he has written contains a frontal and unabashed attack on the thesis of the "Velayat e Motlagheh ye Faghih" introduced by Ayatollah Khomeini and enshrined in the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The work unfolds in two phases: the first, lays bare the presuppositions of the concept of Velayat, which concerns the meaning of the term, its interpretation in mysticism (Irfan), philosophy (Kalam), jurisprudence (Figh'h), The Qur'an, and Tradition (Sonnat). In every instance, Kadivar discounts political implications of the term. He traces the first indication of the thesis to the writings of eighteenth and nineteenth century jurists namely, Mohaghegh e Karaki, Shahid Thani, and Ahmad Naraghi. Kadivar, thus determines the age of the concept as less than two centuries, a mere blinking of an eye compared to the history of Shiite jurisprudence.[3]

But he reserves his most devastating attacks for the second part of the book that is devoted to the critical analysis of the proofs and confirmations of the principle of government by divine mandate. Here Kadivar proceeds in four sections; following the sources of adjudication in Shiite theology he sets up and knocks down the arguments for the Velayat e Faghih adduced from Quran, Tradition, (Sonnat) consensus of the Ulama, (Ijma') and reason (Aghl), He thus concludes:

"The principle of Velayat e Faqih is neither intuitively obvious, nor rationally necessary. It is neither a requirement of religion (Din) nor a necessity for denomination (Mazhab). It is neither a part of Shiite general principles (Osoul), nor a component of detailed observances (Forou') It is, by near consensus of Shiite Ulama, nothing more than a jurisprudential minor hypothesis." This is a sub-article of Islamic leadership and Jafari jurisprudence. ...

The third volume of Kadivar's trilogy is entitled: Government by Appointment. (Hokoumat e Entesabi.) It deals with practical consequences, disappointments, and disenchantments that the Government based on divine mandate has brought about.[4]

See also

Ayatollah Mahmoud Taleghani was a senior Shia cleric of Iran. ... Image:Soroush. ... Intellectual Movements in Iran mainly refer to Iranian experience of modernism through which Iranian modernity and its associated art, science, literature, poetry and political structures have been evolving since 19th century. ...

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