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Sunlight in Architecture

Shadi Keighobadi


Sunlight has important position in Persian thoughts and architecture. In Islamic era and pre-Islamic time Iranians used the sunlight to create emotional and spiritual performance by using architecture elements which could expose the light as a sensible and appreciable form of beauty, such as using shape of shadows by meshed walls (FarkhroMadin) or colorful windows. (see: Nasir al Mulk mosque).
Philosophy of light and illumination refers to one of the most famous philosopher Sohrevardi (also: Suhrawardi) and his thoughts, in spite of this fact that Zoroaster (Persian prophet) and other ancient Iranian religions emphasized the importance of light.


Biography: Suhrawardī (1154–1191) was va Persian philosopher and founder of the Iranian school of Illuminationism, an important school in Islamic philosophy. The "light" in his "Philosophy of Illumination" is a divine and metaphysical source of knowledge. He is referred to by the honorific title Shaikh al-ʿIshraq "Master of Illumination" and Shaikh al-Maqtul "the Murdered Master", in reference to his execution at age 38 for heresy and injustice about him by radicalize Islamism. He left over 50 writings in Persian and Arabic despite of his short life.

Thoughts: Suhrawardi thought of himself as a reviver or resuscitator of the ancient Persian wisdom. He states in Hikmat al-'Ishraq that:There was among the ancient Persians a community of people guided by God who thus walked the true way, worthy Sage-Philosophers, with no resemblance to the Magi (Dualists). It is their precious philosophy of Light, the same as that to which the mystical experience of Plato and his predecessors bear witness, that we have revived in our book called Illuminationist Philosophy (Hikmat al-'Ishraq), and I have had no precursor in the way of such project. Suhrawardi uses pre-Islamic Iranian gnosis, synthesizing it with Greek and Islamic wisdom. The main influence from pre-Islamic Iranian thought on Suhrawardi is in the realm of angelology and cosmology. He believed that the ancient Persians' wisdom was shared by Greek philosophers such as Plato as well as by the Egyptian Hermes and considered his philosophy of illumination a rediscovery mof this ancient wisdom. According to Nasr, Suhrawardi provides an important link between the thought of pre-Islamic and post-Islamic Iran and a harmonious synthesis between the two.In northwestern Iran, Sohravardi (d. 1191) carried out the great project of reviving the wisdom or theosophy of ancient pre-Islamic Zoroastrian Iran.


In his Philosophy of Illumination, Suhrawardi argued that light operates at all levels and hierarchies of reality. Light produces immaterial and substantial lights, including immaterial intellects (angels), human and animal souls, and even 'dusky substances', such as bodies.
Suhrawardi's metaphysics is based on two principles. The first is a form of the principle of sufficient reason. The second principle is Aristotle's principle that an actual infinity is impossible.
The essential meaning of “Ishraaq” is "rising", specifically referring to the sunrise, though "illumination" is the more common translation. It is used both Arabic and Persian philosophical texts as means to signify the relation between the “apprehending subject and the “apprehensible object”; beyond philosophical discourse, it is a term used in common discussion. Suhrawardi utilized the ordinariness of the word in order to encompass the all that is mystical along with an array of different kinds of knowledge, including “Elhām”, meaning personal inspiration.

Concept and Design

This Design is based on Illuminationism philosophy that make people creative and they invent new ways in knowledge, science and arts by inspiring. The power of inspiring comes from inside (self) and outside (universe).
The consequence of both insider and outsider source of positive energy is: talent (or gift)

People who study in this new school of Illumination can increase their level of creativity and being more talented by learning the communication between different fields of study and providing gatherings or meetings to promote their creativity by the light of wisdom.

Sun path and dance of the light

Sun path, sometimes also called day arc, refers to the daily and seasonal arc-like path that the Sun appears to follow across the sky as the Earth rotates and orbits the Sun. The Sun's path affects the length of daytime experienced and amount of daylight received along a certain latitude during a given season.

The various patterns are created by the parametric geometry. They can be extended. The dance of shadows and sunlight can inspire people and promote the ambient.

The school of Illumination

Communication between philosophers, scientists and artists, can be a “rising” in the thoughts of new century. (see this painting: The school of Athens by Raphael) The relationships and similarities will be appeared and unanswered questions will be discussed in many ways of views.
In light of wisdom, every talent can be improved, every quote can be a torch of the way of truth. Hoping for better days, in peace and shining.


“All forms of being in this conceptual world are images of pure lights which exist in the spiritual world.” (Suhrawardi)

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