The Lack of Necessity of Suhrawardi’s “Definite Necessary Proposition”



In the Logic section of the Hikmat al-Ishraq (The Philosophy of Illumination), Suhrawardi innovatively makes the three modes (necessity, possibility and impossibility) part of the predicate, thus considering the mode of all propositions to be ‘necessary’. Insofar as the modes are also discussed in other topics in logic such as contradiction, conversion and syllogism, this innovation also influences these topics. Suhrawardi was aware of this and has shown these influences. This article demonstrates that whether Suhrawardi was aiming for brevity in discussion or whether he was intending to make all the propositions of the ‘real’, or proof-based, sciences necessary, there is no need of this reduction of all the modes to the necessary and this innovation does not solve anything.