عنوان مقاله [English]
The purpose of the present study is to combine the two theories of Shabah al-Mohaki (the representative image), and Wojud al-Zehni (the mental existence). In the context of Islamic philosophy, the relationship between mental and external realities has been a controversial issue among philosophers. It is well known that proponents of Shabah al-Mohaki believe that there is a dissimilarity between mental and external realities, and their rivals, the proponents of mental existence, believe that there is an essential identity between mental and external realities. This group claims that objects have two types of existence; "objective" which is the same reality in the external world, and “subjective” which is called "mental existence". It seems that in their view, subjective and objective realities are numerically identical. The representative theorists on the other side reject this claim.
By investigating and analyzing the texts of the two theories, the author found that the two speak of identity but qualitative and not numerical identity.
As far as the mental existence theory is concerned, when we analyze the claim of mental existence theorists and numerical identity, it turns out that they do not say anything better and more than what representative theorists claim. This analysis is done through the two principles of indiscernibility of identicals and identity of indiscernibles. According to the first, if two things are identical then they must be not be different from one another with respect to all of their properties. The principle speaks of numerical identity. The second principle (although it is controversial) states that if two things have the same properties in every respect then they are identical. This principle does not have the logical truth and speaks of qualitative identity.
If one considers the case of mental existence, the claim that mental existence and objective reality are numerically identical, then he identifies that these two are not only identical but they have different properties. For instance, the subjective reality such as the image of a book or fire has the property of being mental and the objective reality of that image, the book or fire in the external world, has the property of being external. This shows that they are two different things because they have different properties. Therefore, the only way to say that these two are the same (identical), is that they are qualitatively but not numerically, identical.
On the other side, the identity claim (qualitative identity) between subjective and objective realities is found in the texts of proponents of representative theorists. For instance, Shamsuddin Isfahani argues that what is ascribed to mental existence is an image of objective reality and the image of that particular object is contrary to the objective reality itself, although in some respects it is identical to that external reality in such a way that what is obtained from the object in the mind is the same as the external reality.
This shows that representative theorists also accept the claim of identity in some respect but qualitative and not numerical identity between subjective and objective reality.