Sunday, February 8, 2009

Mind Versus Spirit

On a previous post, "Matrix: the Mind of Europe", I received the following very interesting comment:

As you said that these terms ["the spirit of Muslim culture" and "the mind of Europe"] were given by Eliot and Iqbal, did they give these terms for the sake of comparison between them, as we are doing...?

Secondly, ...what is your viewpoint on the mind of Muslim cultures? ...We did hear many times that the spirit of Europe has no conflict with the spirit of Muslim Culture, so logically speaking one question arises whether there is any conflict between the minds of both?

Eliot and Iqbal did not name each other for comparison but since their respective terms ("the mind of Europe" and "the Spirit of Muslim Culture") implied that each was globally applicable, the two giants must have anticipated comparisons at some point (with reference to Iqbal this issue can be explored further in another post).

Not only there cannot be any conflict between the Spirt of Muslim Culture and the Spirit of Europe, but I also suspect that the two are the same.

Minds, however, can be different or so it seems. Each society tends to develop a "collective consciousness" which consists of its tradition, literature, sciences, etc. The structure of Islam is such that in a Muslim society, the collective consciousness (i.e. "the mind") tends to retain a balance with the collective spirit rather than dominating it.

Therefore, I presume that the mind of Europe and the mind of most Muslim communities would be different. We can talk about two conflicts:
  1. Between the mind of Europe and it's own spirit (and that spirit is the Spirit of Muslim Culture, I suspect)
  2. Between the mind of Europe which has overthrown the spirit and insists on devouring it, and the minds of some other societies such as Pakistan which desire to retain a healthy balance with their spirit

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