Averroës on the Existence of God

This summary is based on my readings in ‘Religion and Philosophy’ (Kitab fasl al-maqal, c. 1190 CE) in which I follow Averroës’s arguments for the existence of God. The main point of departure is the fact that ‘God has invited men to a knowledge of His existence, and informed them of it through the intelligence which He has implanted in their nature’ (Introduction; ‘God has borne witness, that there is no God, but He.’ Qur’an 3.16; see also Russell 2009, 345). That is the business of philosophy, ‘to look into creation and to ponder over it in order to be guided to the Creator.’ A believer needs ‘instruments of observation’ such as ‘various kinds of reasoning’ before he begins to look into creation. If someone follows the purpose of philosophy in investigating the existence of things, it would try to know the cause which led to its creation, and the purpose of it would know the argument of kindness.

Arguments for the existence of God