The Sound of Silence – William C. Chittick


“I tried to imagine how the authors of the old texts that I read would have reacted to the phrase “the silence of God.” Probably they would have muttered, “Try listening for once.” Or they might have quoted the Qur’anic verse, “They have hearts but they do not understand with them, they have eyes but they do not see with them, theyhave ears but they do not hear with them”(7:179).The word silence (in Arabic,śamt ) is the opposite of speech (kalām). Muslim theologians and philosophers consider speech an essential attribute ot the divine reality. In other words, by definition, God speaks, constantly and forever, whether or not there are listeners to hear. In the”


Sulamī’s Treatise on the Science of the Letters (ʿilm al-ḥurūf)


“The terms, “Sufism” and “the Science of the Letters” ( ilm al-ḥurūf)’ mentioned together frequently awaken associations with the most widely known work on magic in Islam, Shams al-ma’arifwa-lata’i], al-‘awiirif(“The Brilliance of Knowledge and the Subtleties of its Gift”) of Abii l-‘Abbas Ahmad b. ‘Ali al-Buni ( d.622/1225).The author was a native of the town of Bone (i.e., ‘Annaba) on the Mediterranean coast between Algiers and Tunis, an old Phoenician settlement that became known as the Roman city of Hippo, the bishopric of Saint Augustine (395-430 ), which passed into the hands of the Muslim conquerors in the beginning of the second eighth century. The Shams al-ma’iirif exists in three versions, a short one, the oldest ( dated 618/1221), a middle-sized one, and a long one. the work may be best understood as a kind of encyclopedia of magical”

Sulami's Treatise On The Science Of Letters (Bowering)

The Set of the Real: Mathematical Implications of the Metaphysics of René Guénon – Peter Samsel


“René Guénon, the seminal founder of the Traditionalist School, was also perhaps its preeminent metaphysician. More particularly, he was the plenary expositor of a metaphysics through which mathematical conceptualization runs like a golden thread. As Frithjof Schuon, another remarkable metaphysician, has observed, “Guénon was like the personification, not of spirituality as such, but uniquely of metaphysical certainty; or of metaphysical self- evidence in mathematical mode…”2 As is well known, Guénon’s primary intellectual formation prior to his plunge into the esoteric was that of mathematics, which he both studied and taught for many years.3 In this, he followed a well established tradition of linkage between mathematics and metaphysics extending back to such figures as Pythagoras and Plato.4 Indeed, mathematics in”

The Set Of The Real (Samsel)

Vicegerency and Nature:Ibn ‘Arabī on Humanity’s Existential Protection of the World –


“Human beings are the vicegerents of God on earth and thus also are the stewards of nature.1 This paraphrases one of the main themes of the re- lationship between humanity and the natural environment in the Islamic world, as well as in other religious traditions. Vicegerency implies a spe- cific relationship between God, humanity, and nature, as well as a par- ticular metaphysics, which is what I seek to expound here. The Islamic intellectual response to the ecological crisis began with the writings of Seyyed Hossein Nasr. His summary of vicegerency—or of human purpose in relation to God and to the world—constitutes the foundational treatment of vicegrency in the contemporary discourse on Islamic environmentalism, so it is helpful to begin with it here”

Vicegerency And Nature (Murad)



“The fruit of several centuries of rationalistic thought in the West has been to reduce both the objective and the subjective poles of knowledge to a single level. In the same way that the Cogito of Descartes is based on reducing the knowing subject to a single mode of awareness, the external world which this ‘knowing self’ perceives is reduced to a spatio-temporal complex limited to a single level of reality -no matter how far this complex is extended beyond the galaxies or into aeons of time, past and future. The traditional view as expressed in the metaphysical teachings of both the Eastern and Western traditions is based, on the contrary, upon a hierarchic “

Self-Awareness And Ultimate Selfhood (Nasr)

The Sacred and the Post-Modern: An Impossible Convergence

“The sacred is the projection of the celestial Center into the cosmic periphery.”‘ These words by Frithjof Schuon beautifully suggest what the sacred has represented for mankind throughout the ages, and across traditional civilizations.They remind us, first of all, that the world of the sacred is a centered world. The concept of “center,” which is so profoundly at odds with contemporary trends and sensibili­ ties.must be taken herein more symbolically than literally.This symbolic understanding does not, however, weaken in the least the significance of”

The Sacred And The Post Modern (Laude)

Universal Science: An Introduction to Islamic Metaphysics


“These observations on the centrality of philosophy in the human experience, by the author of ʿIlm-i kullī, are redolent with the wisdom of the living Islamic philosophical tradition, a tradition which survives in all its fullness into our own times only among the Shīʿah. Āyatullāh Mahdī Ḥāʾirī Yazdī was not only an authority on all aspects of the Shīʿah intellectual tradition, but he was also among the few such authorities in its history to have acquired the highest phil- osophical credentials from a Western university and written works of great insight in the light of his twin intellectual attainments.2 Glimpses from the ex- traordinary story of Mahdī Ḥāʾirī Yazdī’s life journey are offered herein by way of introduction to the English translation of his Universal Science (ʿIlm-i kullī). In this work his own journey intersected with that of another seeker of knowl- edge, John Yaḥyā Cooper (24 August 1947 – 9 January 1998), who commenced its”

Hairi Yazdi, Universal Science, An Introduction To Islamic Metaphysics (trans. Cooper)

Metaphysical Themes 1274–1671 – ROBERT PASNAU


“The present study seeks to learn something about the metaphysics of substance in light of four rich but for the most part neglected centuries of philosophy, running from the late medieval period to the early modern era. At no period in the history of philosophy, other than perhaps our own, have metaphysical problems received the sort of sustained attention they received during the later Middle Ages, and never has a whole philosophical tradition come crashing down as quickly and completely as did scholastic philosophy in the seventeenth century. My hope is to understand the nature of the late medieval project, and the reasons for its demise”

Pasnau, Metaphysical Themes



“There is a well-known saying of’All ibn Abi ‘falib, the cousin and son-in­ law of the Prophet of Islam and representative par excellence of Islamic esoterism and metaphysics, according to which one should pay attention to what is said and not who has said it. This teaching has been close to my heart since my youth and rarely have I accepted to write something of an
autobiographical nature. But the Library of Living Philosophers requires a work of such a nature from the person with whose thought a particular volume is concerned. Therefore, with some reticence I tum to this task. Once”

Auxier, Hahn, And Stone (eds.), The Philosophy Of Seyyed Hossein Nasr

The Sufi Doctrine of Man – Ṣadr al-Dīn al-Qūnawī’s Metaphysical Anthropology


“Ṣadr al-Dīn al-Qūnawī (d. 673/1274) was the foremost disciple of the great Andalusī mystic, Muḥyī-l-Dīn Ibn ʿArabī (d. 638/1240) and played a pivotal role in disseminating his teachings. Although less famous than his master, Qūnawī has traditionally been recognised both as a key interpreter of Ibn ʿArabī’s work and as a sophisticated metaphysician in his own right. Yet for almost half a century now, since Osman Yahia’s1 and Henri Corbin’s2 respective studies on Ibn ʿArabī first brought the figure of his chief disciple to the wider attention of western scholarship, there has emerged no full-length examination of Qūnawī’s thought.”

Todd, The Sufi Doctrine Of Man

Religious Experience in Traditional Islam – William C. Chittick


‘AYN AL-QUDAT’S QUR’ANIC VISION From black words to white parchment* – Mohammed Rustom


“‘Ayn al-QuঌƗt HamadƗnƯ (d. 1131) was a mystic, philosopher, theologian, and judge who was born in the western Iranian city of Hamadan. He was the student of Aতmad al-GhazƗlƯ (d. 1126),1 the brother of Abnj ণƗmid al-GhazƗlƯ (d. 1111), and is best known as a maverick-like figure who was put to death by the Seljuq government at the tender age of 34, ostensibly on charges of “heresy”.2 Looking beyond the causes surrounding his state-sponsored execution and to his writings, ‘Ayn al-QuঌƗt emerges as a first-rate thinker who was thoroughly con- versant in the Islamic intellectual sciences, along with Arabic and Persian poetry. One of ‘Ayn al-QuঌƗt’s greatest achievements was the original manner in which he tied the seemingly”

'Ayn Al-Qudat's Qur'anic Vision (Routledge Handbook On Sufism) (1)