Philosophy and Wisdom in Islamic-Iranian Architecture, with Respect to External Veil in Architecture
1Department of Civil Engineering, Islamic Azad University, Collage of Civil, Kermanshah Branch, Kermanshah, Iran .
The result of centuries of experience of this country’s ancestors and great artists, are Memorabilia that nowadays referred to as Islamic architecture. Increasing crisis of identity and irregularities in the feature of contemporary cities and buildings, reveal the latent values of past experiences more than ever. Various definitions have been proposed to explain Islamic architecture, which mostly address its material and superficial aspects. This paper attempts to address the wisdom in Islamic architecture. Based on this view work of art that lies between the audience and the author, as the medium, contains spiritual teachings, and architect as a wayfarer seeking for spiritual growth and moral virtues, and by acquiring real knowledge of the world and reaching the perdition rank for the sake of god, revives the flow of god’s wisdom in his being and makes the grace of god appears in this worldly bodies (of architecture). In principle, this attitude toward Islamic architecture is endogenous in that it can redefine a leading Islamic architecture. This paper also purports to, extra to describing wisdom in Islamic architecture, investigate the internal and external views of Islamic wisdom toward architecture. Hence, this paper first describes the characteristics of Islamic art and then conducts an investigation on the internal and external aspects of Iranian architectural wisdoms, by defining the philosophy of Islamic architecture. Then the architecture of mosques, as the feature of Islamic buildings, is presented, along with the philosophy of each of its individual components. Finally, the philosophy of the veil in Islamic architecture is, briefly, explained. It should be noted that the future of Islamic architecture is only definable in the light of a philosophical and endogenous approach, the view that is imbedded, in best, in the Iranian style of architecture.
Copy the following to cite this article:
Soltani M. Philosophy and Wisdom in Islamic-Iranian Architecture, with Respect to External Veil in Architecture. Special Issue of Curr World Environ 2015;10(Special Issue May 2015). DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.12944/CWE.10.Special-Issue1.34
Copy the following to cite this URL:
Soltani M. Philosophy and Wisdom in Islamic-Iranian Architecture, with Respect to External Veil in Architecture. Special Issue of Curr World Environ 2015;10(Special Issue May 2015). Available from: http://www.cwejournal.org/?p=9563
The divine art, from the beginning, has been searching for a place where its followers can congregate in. This congregation, basically to worship god, can enrich the social interaction between followers, especially for those religions that have valued social interactions. Man, as an intrinsic being, as to communicate with his god, needs a place that has celestial and spiritual features to make the ascent of soul and its connection to eternal being possible. Among all the religions, Islam puts the most emphasis on the social aspects of worship. As early as the seventh century, Islam was established in the land of Hijaz, and in the year 266 AD the migration of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) became the dawn of Islamic history. The art of great civilizations like Asia, North Africa, and even parts of Europe faced a change, and the foundations of Islamic art appeared, which combines the art of defeating cultures with Islamic culture. In the light of common factors like language, religion, belief and thought, Islamic civilization achieved a united spirit. It acquired an independent song, and out of this unity Islamic art was born. Islamic art goes beyond only material world and its purpose is to express unity. Muslim artist seeks for unity in integrity of religious form of art. Islamic art is a non-realistic art that has nothing to do with the exact realism of nature. Muslim artist attempts to go beyond the appearance, and portray celestial, extra-terrestrial, world.
Formation of Islamic art, almost, coincided with the ascending of the Umayyad dynasty in the year 14 AD. The change of Islamic ruling center directly familiarized the Muslims with foreign art, i.e. Iranian and roman. That was the time when the art of Umayyad dynasty, which was an eclectic art of adjacent nations, headed toward a new direction. Umayyad dynasty involved actively in the construction of religious and non-religious buildings. Dynasties like Taherid, Saffarid, and Samanid each had a significant role in the creation of art in Iran. After these historical periods, Seljuk dynasty made one of the greatest and brilliant eras of artistic innovation and development in Islamic art, and after that Ilkanid dynasty played an effective role in the developing of Islamic art, then Safavid dynasty bestowed beauty and glory to Islamic architecture and put up variety of buildings in different cities.
The mosque was a place that made the social aspect of worship possible and so had a considerable importance. Therefore, mosques have a prominent role, mosque is the beating heart of Islamic cities, and the best places should be provided for building mosques. After the formation of Islamic state, the first act of Muhammad (PBUH) in medina was the construction of Qoba mosque, which became the basic model for all the mosques. This mosque had Islamic spirit, as well as Islamic identity, since it had an Islamic body. Along with arrival of Islam in Iran Islamic spirit breathed into the Iranian buildings. That is a fact that arrival of Islam in Iran replaced the spirit and roughness of Iranian buildings (Zoroastrian temples). In other words, Islamic spirit flowed in the Iranian body. Many of the mosques which were not constructed on the (Zoroastrian) fire templates’ sites kept their Iranian form, along with the Islamic spirit. That is way the Iranian identity reappeared and represented in the mosques. To discover the wisdom behind this process we are going to turn to the relationship between architecture and philosophy of Islamic art and, finally pay attention to one of the apparent aspects of Islamic wisdom, i.e. philosophy of veil in Islamic architecture.
Wisdom in Islamic Architecture (Philosophy of Islamic Architecture)
Spiritual teachings and cultural beliefs are the infrastructure of a valuable and dynamic architecture. Hence the recognition of glorious achievements of Islamic architecture would be impossible without knowledge of intellectual principles and social infrastructures. Those, who unwittingly separate Islamic architecture from spirituality and wisdom, although unconsciously, block its progress and excellence. In order to grasp a better understanding of this evolutionary process, it should be kept in mind that old and mysterious architecture of Iran cannot be understood without literature and culture of the people, who have tried to keep its bricks and paints (colors). Therefore, in recognition of any work of architecture it should be noticed that, on the one hand, dominant spiritual implications in the process of design create the formal features of final building, and, on the other hand, any built space, in general, represents the diversity of design concepts and assumptions. Therefore, cultural principles are the ground for formation of building, spiritual qualities of constructor and the built space, and the essential elements of formation of spiritual concepts within the material body of architectural buildings. (Mahdavi Nejad, 2004)
The wisdom of Islamic architecture is a level where the material and spiritual needs are answered similarly. Sayed Hussein Nasr in his Islamic Culture argued: “considering these definitions, Mulla Sadra provided in his Rasa'il, wisdom is a pure logical knowledge that transforms its knower in the process of gaining knowledge, in a way that the cover converts to rituals that reflects the cosmic hierarchy.” (Nasr, 1997)
This order that Mulla Sadra called order of wisdom is a rank where man qualifies to create architectural merits or any other work of art, and whatever he creates is full of clear and appropriate responses to material demands and spiritual needs. Islamic architecture is the result of a spirituality that flourished, thanks to the virtuous thoughts of Muslim architects; until it reached the highest degree of prosperity in Isfahan school, where one may call the crystallization of wisdom of Islamic architecture. Wisdom of Islamic architecture led to the establishment of a tradition, where the architectural works of this era became eternal and stable monuments of all time. (Nasr, 1991) What is referred as Iranian Islamic architecture, is the continuum of a tradition that had potential, relying on the spiritual teachings, to embody the pure Islamic philosophy, by the language of mystery and allusion, into the material body of world of appearance.
Characteristics of Iranian Architecture in Islamic Era
For any architectural design to be conducted three social elements are necessary: 1. a society in need for that design 2. People who support the design, and provide its financial resources 3. Skillful architects and masons. As to construct the religious and non-religious buildings it is necessary to use the geometrical, mathematical, and architectural symbols. Utilizing these sciences, over the centuries, technicians have been able to create architectural masterpieces. In the history books of Islamic era great and useful subjects have been mentioned, concerning the construction of buildings. The only notable example here is a painting attributed to Behzad in 276 hijri, noted in Zafarname and Khamse by Nezamee. Presently, these paintings are holed by Hopkins University, United States. These paintings illustrated the process of constructing Timur Mosque and Khornagh palace, in a miniature style. Some researchers believe that the reason for the lack of useful information about the architects of Islamic era, as well as information on designing and constructing approaches, is that, comparing to poets and philosophers, less attention was given to architects. That seems untrue, because in different eras skilful architects and masons were the crucial element to construct commercial, residential, and places to worship. Islamic historians such as Ibn Khaldun, Bayhaqi, and others, have written valuable contents about architecture and architects, like the fact that architects were familiar with mathematics and geometry. Architects, masons and other craftsmen, with the full knowledge of architectural science, along with their personal initiatives and innovations, and inspirations from religious ideas bestowed the architecture an everlasting glory.
The responsibility of constructing a building was assumed to be taken by different teams, for example a team was responsible for building the frame, while the other team was responsible for interior design, like plastering and tiling. Being humble, Iranian architects did not inscribe their names on the buildings, except in rare cases.
Iranian Pure Architecture and Wisdom
Islamic architecture is one of the greatest expressions with respect to the manifestation of an artistic reality into a materialistic body. Islamic architecture as one of the greatest branch of Islamic art established a major portion of the characteristics of Islamic art during the different time periods. Historically, architecture is the first art capable of adjusting itself with artistic concepts, which has been utilized by Muslims. Reception of this art by Muslims made it, for many years, the only Islamic art that was used to record the Islamic concepts. It went so far that for the most of the people the Islamic art was equal to Islamic architecture. (Volster, 2001)
The Islamic architecture refers to a wide range of Islamic works, which during years, have been constructed within the Islamic territory. There are apparent differences among them; however we can detect a valuable and dynamic continuum, by looking them in a holistic way, which makes it possible to recognize it as a united form called Islamic architecture. Islamic architecture is the result of full-scale attempts of Islamic architects; while by considering the location of these buildings a wide spectrum comes to view, with the cultural and regional differences, spiritual harmony is apparent among them. What gives the Islamic architecture its unity - in spite of its variety - is the fact that all moral teachings are embedded within the each and every one of these architectural works? In other words, latent principles in these buildings make it possible to consider them as the members of a family, principles known as the unity element. (Nasr, 1996) Unity element is a functional factor to identification of Islamic architectural works, because, on one hand, makes it possible to understand the buildings and, on the other hand, provides a chance to study all the Iranian-Islamic architectural works, as well as those of other Islamic countries.
Islamic architecture of Iran, although like other aspects of Iranian architecture is heavily affected by regional and historical characteristics, is one of the most important and successful schools of Islamic architecture, since during the years, has shown a glorious progress. Iranian architectural approaches each complimented the previous approaches, and pursued the path of success for years, without any problem. Geography of Iran was an effective factor here, since Iran was one of the first nations to accept Islam, and many other nations accept Islam through Iran. Geographical vastness and cultural richness also are effective factors. Hence within current categories, Islamic architecture is considered as one of the most important schools, additionally with respect to form-content issues it has unique characteristics. (Pirnia, 1990)
Islamic Architecture; Common Border of Art and Spirituality
Few people can be found who walk into an Islamic building and don not feel the vastness of its space. Appeal of azure blue, strongly curved anticlines, regular mirror works, gilding the walls with the other-worldly words, etc. all and all are the manifestation of supernatural in nature. Islamic art is a combination of intuition and ideas; it manifests the quality of essences in the form of appearances, and in a word, love creates the art. Burckhardt believes: “if you are obliged to answer the question “what is Islam?” it would be enough for you to refer to one of the masterpieces of Islamic art, like the great mosques of Islamic territory”.
So he believes that Islamic art is thoroughly based on reflection. The artist, by visualizing a raw material, in fact, creates a work of art, and grants soul to that material. So in this sense the artist is a creator. The creators need to be pure and untouchable, so art has always been of great importance in the eyes of Muslims. In Islamic art nothing should be able to separate man and unseen presence of god. That is why the mosques anywhere in the world directed toward the Kaaba. It means the cardinal direction is the direction of the beyond. Thus, the concept of time for such a building, which is directed toward the beyond, is different from countable time. Here is where Islamic art and spirituality come together. (Rahmati, 2004)
The Philosophy (Wisdom) of Architecture of Mosque
Architecture is one of the Islamic arts that contains features of Islamic identity, and almost has in itself all of the characteristics of religious art. In Islamic territories, they built the houses in a way to be appropriate for the man’s short life. The most important factor, in building the houses, was their logical functions, rather than the permanence of the building, and perhaps that is why few of old houses are left, except a small number of them which are protected with respect to spiritual aspects, like the house of Zahra (may god bring peace upon her) in medina, and the house of Ali (PBUH) in Kufa, that again their spiritual status caused their protection. However, the GOD’s houses are different issues. GOD is eternal, so the place devoted to its worship should be eternal. So the architecture of mosques is of great importance, and architects used the most beautiful arts to ornament those places. In fact the mosque is the manifestation of Islamic art. (Aavani, 1978)
Wisdom in the Architecture of Mosques As the GOD’s Houses
The Islamic art is the art of wisdom. Wisdom is the only knowledge capable of grasping and expressing the Islamic art. Architecture and associated ornaments are of great importance in Islamic art. The Islamic architecture is based on wisdom. The philosophy of Islamic architecture, especially the architecture of mosques, can be studied with respect to internal and external (inward and outward) aspects. All the requirements and functions of mosques also can be studied from these two aspects. Also the inward and outward philosophy of architecture of mosques can be viewed with respect to the function of the face of building, physical and practical function, and the inward and outward characteristics. The history of mosques’ architecture illustrates the existence of wisdom in that erea.
The architecture of mosques, since the beginning when Muhammad the prophet (PBUH) built the first mosque to the present, and the mosques with new architecture, more or less, has possessed such manifestation of wisdom. Sometimes these manifestations of wisdom are in full color, while in times less noticeable, and that depends on the political, social, economic terms. Ornaments and decorative designs create a harmonious rhythm that is very useful to understand the spiritual status of mosque. In general it should be noted that the mosque, with respect to rank, is of great importance among different types of buildings in the Islamic art, and has always occupied the minds of artists, and has motivated their talent, creativity, and imagination, and has made them to take actions, in such a way that the greatest masterpieces of Islamic art either are mosques or arts associated with the mosques. (Pirnia, 1995)
According to Islam, the divine art is on first place the manifestation of GOD’s unity into the world’s beauty and order. Unity is reflected in the coordination and coherence of the world of plurality, and the order and balance of the universe. The appearance, in itself, contains all this aspects, and the induction of the unity of the universe, is the same with wisdom. Hence, the Islamic thought necessarily recognizes a link between the art and wisdom. (Burckhardt, 1954) Burckhardt, heavily touched by the Iranian architecture, in his The Art of Architecture said: “in every spot of this architecture you can see the merit of excellence”. He believes the architecture of the mosque annuls any tension between the earth and sky (terrestrial and celestial elements). (Burckhardt, 1954)
The second part of the word architecture, i.e. “tecture” that means “techneh” (technic), in Greek means art and in Arabic means technic. According to Plotinus thechneh is the art of imitation of the eternal forms, and all of these indicate that the art is sacred. The sacred architecture in Islam was the Kaaba. Kaaba is based on two types of (sacred) geometric shapes, a square and a cycle, which is the symbol of imagination, matter and materiality, however the Kaaba’s rites are completed when one goes around it (finish the cycle (Tavaf) around it). Tavaf is cyclical, while the Kaaba is a distinguished and elevated square. Tavaf is a plane. This cyclical symbol, that is the natural part of its architecture, turns to dome (Gonbad) in the architecture of the mosque. The architecture of the mosque is based on a quadrangle shape. In other words the bases are on four directions, yet the spatial structure is dome. All the mosques are tetragonal, hexagonal, or octagonal. However, over these structures is placed a dome. The tetragonal symbolizes a square, cube, and in fact, we trapped in the material world. This is the interpretive foundation of the mosque, so when we enter the mosque, this four directions and the restriction suggest that “for one or two days a cage is made up of my body”; yet when we turn your head toward the top and look up at the altar, which in Surah al’imran (Koran) is introduced as a kind of resort, that the curved shape of it separates us from that restricted concept and takes us to a spiritual realm. (Balkhari, 2002)
The Philosophy of the Components of the Mosque
The building of the mosque is designed and constructed greatly and spiritually. The floor is cobbled with the most beautiful and high quality stones, covered by decorations like mosaic tiles, seven-color tiles, enamel tiles, and beautiful plastering on the walls of floorages and bedchambers, all remind one of the gnostic paradise of GOD. Beautiful carpets with magical colors, adorn the interior space of the mosque. The application of the best decorations in the altar as the leading spot of the mosque, directed toward the GOD’s Kaaba, shows its importance. Applying the koranic inscriptions on the wall, in Kufic, Sols, and Naskh scripts, within the azure blue space of the mosque, that comfort the eyes, all are tools to project and express the innermost meaning of the mosque. Epigraphs and inscriptions always remind the prayer of the GOD, and manifest the true meaning of Koran in his mind, for him to appreciate the unique power of the GOD. Mosque ought to be a quiet place, where heart can find peace, for the prayer to worship the GOD with all his heart. These extensions are designed in a way that if the preacher goes up on the pulpit and preach, with a common voice, all the prayers can hear him, no need to any device to booster the voice. And there is no need for the voice to go out of the mosque. The inscribed words on the internal walls of altar, or adjacent walls, not only remind the prayer of the meaning of words, but make him realize the rhythm of the shape of the words, spiritual forms, and revelation of the GOD’s power. (Burckhardt, 1954)
The Dome A Gift from Iranian Architecture to Islam
Dome is a gift to the Islam world by Iranian architecture, the most obvious symbol of unity in diversity, the most essential part of the mosque with respect to space and meaning. Considering the space the most formal and shape-related events take place in the dome of the mosque. All the components do their best for the architecture to end in dome. The dome is the center of unity. Everything comes from porch and entrance, etc. and concludes in the dome, and dome in turn takes your eyes to one determined direction. The highness is reminiscence of sovereignty and eminence of the GOD. Standing under the dome, you realize how small you are, and that is a scale for you to understand you exist and what is your size. Of course, in the creating of the mosque’s space the positive aspects are more than negative aspects. No religion, as Islam, does give such a great attention to the human dignity. (Maki Nejad, 2002)
Altar is the heart of mosque, a place to fight against self, since the pray is self-fighting and so altar is located one level beneath. With respect to voice, during the prayer, the altar is the source of reflection of GOD’s word that indicates the presence of GOD. The lights are quite minor and in a sense related to the religious traditions. Imam located himself lower than the others to say he is humble, and compensate his standing in front of the congregation by going one level lower. The curves, inscriptions, and patterns on the walls of the mosque indicate the unity in plurality. One of the things that happen in the mosques is the convergence of the patterns and lines in the architectural space. It seems that these two elements are separate, but convergence take place in the architecture, and all of these make sense in one or other ways. The patterns and lines have different functions out of the mosque, but in mosque’s environment they change functionally. (Maki Nejad, 2002)
The altar directed toward the Maaka has a doorway where imam stands and prays while others standing behind him repeat his movements. The first function of this doorway is that it reflects the voice of Imam, and at the same time reminds one of the altar of the church, the most sacred place in the church, in a miniature size. This coincidence becomes strengthen by Meshkat, a lamp hanged in front of the altar, which is the reminiscence of Meshkat in holy Koran (Surah Noor, 33). The Islamic art has always a divine flavor and color. Thankful to the minarets of the mosque, are the hands held toward the heaven. The reflection of the building in the water pond indicates the boundlessness of the space, take us out of the perceptible space, and break all the boundaries between reality and imagination. Yes, from the Islamic building one can smell the odor of spirituality. (Burckhardt, 1991)
Minaret came to exist because in the architecture of mosque we need a high place, which could not be located in the ground of mosque. Historically, two factors have had great influence on the structure of mosque. First, the increased use of spiritual functions of mosque; Azan and minaret. And maybe that is why there seems to exist a commonality between mosques, churches, Jewish synagogues, as well as Persian temples. (Burckhardt, 1954)
The architecture of mosque is a divine architecture based on mathematics, which Greeks utilized in constructing great amphitheaters. Greek theaters were designed in such a way actors voices could be heard all around the stairs. A specific geometric structure, not only issued the voices in a specific direction, but also increased the tone of voice. The example of sacred architecture is Imam Mosque in Isfahan. They placed the pulpit underneath the main dome of this mosque to make the voices louder. (Balkhari, 1991) So a series of new functions appeared, and these functions affected the mosque architecture. And the second factor was the development of spiritual principles of Islam. These spiritual foundations trained architects with commitment letters. These commitment letters include things like: architect should go to work with ablution, he should involve in the Journey of truth, he should start the work with prayer, etc.
At first the muqarnas was made based on the Koran verse “Allah is the lighter of the heavens and the earth. The example of his light is like a tube (Meshkaat) …” It seems Koran gives an architectural illustration in Surah Noor. In different geographical places the muqarnas got variety of forms. However, their essence remained the same as told in the Surah Noor.
The Philosophy of Veil in Iranian Architecture
There were four approaches in the Islamic architecture, including: Egyptian style, Shami style, Morocco style, and Iranian style. The Iranian style is the most valuable and widespread approach which includes Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, India, Indonesia, etc. and all the countries which were conquered by Iran. (Pirnia, 1995)
Originally, it used to be a principle to observe the issue of veil in the constructing the houses, for houses to have proper atmosphere, for example most of the old houses in Iran had a water pond in the middle of the yard, as well as side shoulders in this ponds for washing the feet; trees, and fish. The important issue is the introspection design of the houses. In the built houses, residents were not uncomfortable. Inside the houses, or the place where women and children lived, ought to be multifarious. Kitchen was constructed where easily accessible for the housewife, where no one can see her, in contrast to the current. In the traditional architecture, entries are constructed in a way that no one can see the inside of the house, if the doors are open, in contrast to the modern doors. Another principle of introspection in residential buildings were “hit rings” which were installed the exterior part of the entrance gates, and were formed by two separate pieces of iron, with a cyclical shape for women and a hammer shape for men, to produce different sounds, to declare whether a man or a woman is knocking the door; this type of gates can be fined in the old parts of some cities in Iran, with maze shape corridors leading to inside spaces, so prevent foreigners from taking look into the private space of the house. Interesting functions of this element can be creating a pause, a spatial division, a space for waiting. (Pirnia, 1995)
After passing through the main door and entering the enclosure you have to pass the garden ahead in order to enter interior yard, or pass the two “right angle”. Unlike the entrance gates of current houses that once they are open the garden and yard are exposed to the exterior look. Three-door room was the bedroom, and there was not a direct entrance to these rooms, since there were corridors adjacent to each room. (Kiani, 2008) Finally the word introspection before indicating an architectural meaning, contains moral and mystical values and norms, such that the Iranian architecture on exterior is nothing but labyrinthine paths, and has a simple look covered by adobe and mud, but inside it represents a world of beauty, so it is called introspect. (Kiani, 2008)
The remaining buildings constructed by our fathers are the most useful tools that can help us reread the spiritual foundations of the Islamic architecture. The Iranian architecture is the result of the spiritual view of our virtuous ancestors, therefore if we study these masterpieces, we can reveal the latent concepts within these works of arts, concepts directed from the Iranian and Islamic spiritual teachings, and extended into the material forms. One of the most important teachings of Islamic architecture is “perdition rank for the sake of GOD”. Forgetting self-desires, Iranian architect frees himself from the material boundaries, replaces his desires by GOD’s will in his decisions. He forgets his fame, and instead of his personal tastes, makes use of spiritual teachings in his art. Iranian architect with strong faith in GOD, and by excluding anything but GOD, along with people, involves himself in the art of architecture. Therefore the result is not much associated with the will of the architect, but connected with believes hold by people and the spirituality dominant in their social life. (Pirnia, 1995)
Continuity between the arts can leads the different, divers, and plural components of the universe to a higher unity. In the golden age of Islamic architecture, this unity and harmony was ideal. For example, one can refer to Sheikh Lotfolah Mosque. Here the paintings are the same as Islamic inscriptions, and what can be seen in the appearance is the same as what one can find on the interior walls. The most important point is that the inside looks alike as the outside. The unity among the buildings goes beyond one or two buildings, and in the Safavid Isfahan it seemed all the buildings were expressing one truth, and that is confirming the greatness of GOD. According to Seid Hussein Nasr: “The link between spirituality and art in Safavid Iran, in the arts such as architecture, music, miniatures, etc. is quite evident”. (Nasr, 1996)
This doctrine is of great concern these days, by professors of architecture, where some of them have the students to communicate with other artistic disciplines, in order to compensate for the deficiency of educational system in this area. Continuity between poetry, painting, music, architecture, etc. is so strong that they can be relied on to appreciate, successfully, prevailing secrets and mysteries of the universe. (Pirnia, 1995)
Reflecting on the architecture of mosques, especially great Iranian mosques, man can realize the greatness of current wisdom in these masterpieces and find out how they are constructed. Human and natural geography of a place can affect the construction of buildings, such as houses, palaces, and mosques, by humans, and current and future generations, naturally, inherit these features. It is the combination of natural and human geography that makes the settlements. Foreign models and approaches often are not compatible with this geography, so cause many negative results, unless become optimized and updated under the observation of local models, which in the case of Iran has not been a good experience. Islamic architecture always has had secrets and mysteries; sometimes it is difficult to appreciate these secrets, and sometimes the architecture simply reveals its secret. Veil in the Islamic architecture has a great philosophy, so simple and at the same time rooted in the history of this nation. Nowadays the veil has lost its place in the architecture; for example the introspection which has a long history in the architecture of Iran, now is forgotten and is replaced by open-kitchen and connected rooms (connected living room and drawing room). House constructing is a cultural-social phenomenon; it is the result of old days and old experiences. Days that are apparent all over this territory; experiences that should be protected against the foreign cultures, where the form takes the shape of an incompatible tool. The urban and rural cultures in this country are so great that can be used in the current industrial world, in an optimized form. Perhaps this optimization movement can be called the return movement to self in architecture.
- Aavani, Gh. Wisdom and Spiritual Art, Collection of Articles(Kroos Press, 1978)
- Balkhari, H. Greek Wisdom, Iranian Music. Khial Press. 11, 44-45 (1991)
- Balkhari, H. Manifestation in Islamic Art, Incarnation in Christian Art. Andisheh Press. 2, (2002)
- Burckhardt, T. The Spirit of Islamic Art(Honar Press, 1954)
- Burckhardt, T. The Eternity of Art (Barg Press, 1991)
- Kiani, M.Y. Iranian Architecture in Islamic Era (Samt Press, 2008)
- Mahdavi Nejad, M. J. Philosophy of Islamic Architecture. Fine Art Press. 19, (2004)
- Maki Nejad, M. The Roll of Ornaments in Islamic Art of Iran. Book of Month. 45, (2002)
- Nasr, S.H. Islamic Tradition in the Iranian Architecture (Barg Press, 1991)
- Nasr, S.H. Islamic Art and Spirituality (Religious Press, 1996)
- Nasr, S.H. Sarai Shiraz in History and Philosophy (Nasher Daneshgahee Press, 1997)
- Pirnia, M.K. The Approaches of Iranian Architecture (Art Press, 1990)
- Pirnia, M.K. Islamic Architecture of Iran (Science and Technology Press, 1995)
- Rahmati, E. Art and Spirituality Collections of articles. (Ramin Press, 2004)
- Volster, T. An Introduction to Cultural Geography (Farhang Press, 2001)