Biography of Abenmasarra (883-931)

Arab philosopher, born in Córdoba in 883 and died in 931. The two books in which exposes its doctrine, Kitab el-absar ("book of explanation") and Kitab el-huroof ("book of letters"), have been lost, but it is possible to reconstruct his doctrine from testimonies.

It formed in Córdoba an ascetico-mistico circle made by suspected of heterodoxy, and had to split with some of his disciples to North Africa. He/She came to Medina and Mecca, and returned to Córdoba during the reign of Abd al-Rahman III. School that formed was called "masarri school", and had two main centers in the heart of Muslim Spain: Cordoba and Pechina (Almería). Members of this school, which greatly expanded the doctrine of his master, preached a sort of communism contrary to any type of private property and denied any possibility of divine science.

In particular, the doctrine of Abenmasarra was influenced by the reef and, above all, Plotinus Neoplatonism and Gnosticism. He/She conceived of God as Supreme unit, whose knowledge is only reached via mystical. Before the world, the unit was surrounded by the raw material, which arise after all things; Thus, things do not come directly from God, because the perfection of this would be spotted if he/she is dealing directly with the proceeds. God simply acts on the first matter, and it is then when occur a series of emanations which arises, first, the Universal intellect, holder of all science. Of this, emanates the Universal soul, and this pure nature. Then there is the second matter, from which arise the universal body and the remaining things that populate the world. Thus, Abenmasarra sets the cosmos in five columns: raw, Universal intellect, Universal soul, pure nature and second matter.

Defended human free will and recommended use it so that it will take to achieve eternal happiness or release of personal ties, which proposed a series of rules spiritual as humility, prayer, penance and mortification. The human soul which is characterized in the doctrine of Abenmasarra is held prisoner by the contradictions of the manifold nature, and just wants to return to the primitive purity of God, Supreme light which has been separated and which will in the resurrection, once abandoned the material body that houses it.