Volume 5, Issue 2 (summer96 2017)                   2017, 5(2): 20-33 | Back to browse issues page

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Mozafar F, Nadimi H, Salehi A. The Ontology of Historic Places: An Ontological Contemplation on Historic Places in the Light of the Doctrine of Principality of the Existence. Iran University of Science & Technology. 2017; 5 (2) :20-33
URL: http://jria.iust.ac.ir/article-1-769-en.html
Abstract:   (2570 Views)
A review of the history of architectural conservation implies that ontological attitude of scholars and theorists in the field of historic places› conservation is one of the most important principles of conservation theories. Those features of historic places which are considered as more significant at the moment of recognition are often turned into an issue for conservation. However, there is not a clear understanding of such an issue, especially its theoretical basics, in Iran›s today community.
Accordingly, this paper explores the ontology of historic places by relying on Transcendental Wisdom ascribed to Sadr al-Moto›alehin Shirazi and based on the doctorine of «Principality of the Existence» which offers an explication of the existence of material beings. In this line, the mentioned relations between «material and form», «form and meaning» and «extrinsic and intrinsic aspects of things» in the system of Transcendental Wisdom and also the theory of Substantial Motion and its explanation apropos the fluid existence of material beings and finally transcendentalism›s conceptualization of the relation between «existent» and «being» in the world›s system are the main views taken from such a philosophy. In all, since this study is in line with Sadraei›s philosophy it enjoys analytical-philosophical nature and employs logical reasoning and analogical methodology.
Respectively, the historic place is scrutinized from three aspects. The first aspect refers to such a place «as a single measurable totality» whereas the other two aspects regard it «as a changeable totality» and «as an element within the contextual measures».
With respect to the first aspect, the existence of the historic place is considered as a measurable element enjoying several levels of emergence. These levels constitute the triple aspects of meaning, form (and its extrinsic determinations) and material. Also, corresponding to each aspect, the historic place gains some measures. Consequently, regarding the measures of any historic place, we can talk about the measures referring to meaning, form (intrinsic and extrinsic measures) and material.
Moreover, among these levels, each level is more significant than the lower levels representing the existence of the historic place. In other words, the existence of the historic place is manifested in its intrinsic form and meaning more than anything else and the material as well as the extrinsic determinations of the form are simply the manifestations or, in a word, the context for the emergence of the historic place›s existence. However, a historic place is finally a single entity which has existential integrity and the aforementioned levels are not separate from each other in reality.
Then, the temporality and mixing of the historic place›s existence with change is considered. In this respect, relying on the theory of Substantial Motion, the historic place is regarded as a «changeable totality» and evolving issue mingled with time. In this respect, the historic place is a fluid entity, not an object, which is a permanent becoming; it is a gradually-occurring matter and is like an entity scattered in time whose past and future constitute different parts of a single entity. Thus, in reality, we cannot talk about persistence and consistency in the existence of the historic place and just the issue of continuity in its existence can be raised. This continuity is possible due to the becoming on the orbit of measures referring to its particular existence. But the question that other than the measures of the historic place in the mentioned triple aspects what other measures referring to its particular existence can be found paves the way for paying attention to another aspect of its existence.
In this aspect, the historic place is considered not as a single totality but as a part of its surrounding world which can be the world in the broadest scope. It is argued that simply recognizing the elements within the existence of the historic place cannot provide full knowledge of it and it is necessary to consider its inevitable relation to the environment or more general context. Accordingly, the historic place as an entity becomes the manifestation of «being» and its validity depends on such a manifestation. In this aspect, the historic place becomes the manifestation (relatively speaking) of the names and attributes of the being and the regularities originated from it and, consequently, it is located under the existential systems of the world and its manifestations in the natural as well as the cultural world. These systems or orders have some manifestations in the nature such as a number of laws referring to qualitative and quantitative aspects of the place (meaning, form and material). In this respect, the cultural measures and orders receive their validity via corresponding to existential systems and thus they can be used as a criterion for the existence of the historic place.
In general, from the perspective of this study, the historic place is first and foremost an «integrated totality and objective measurable entity which changes permanently» while its particular measures (in the triple levels of meaning, form and material) are located under the existential systems manifested in the natural as well as cultural rules. It should also be considered that the validity of the historic place›s existence depends on its capacity to manifest the existential systems. Thus, the constant and necessary matter in it is the very orders or existential measures manifested in it which can be called «the aspect of being» or «Allah›s aspect» in a word.
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Type of Study: Research | Subject: Subject- oriented researches in Islamic architecture and urbanism, eg. Spatial-geometrical ideas, symbols and ornaments
Received: 2017/09/27 | Accepted: 2017/09/27 | Published: 2017/09/27

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