One Step to God: ‘Ayn al-Qozat on the Journey of the Heart – Mohammed Rustom

Abstract:

An age-old myth is that ‘Ayn al-Qozat was put to death by the “orthodox” Seljuqs because his teachings squarely contradicted mainstream Muslim theology. But as we now know, the reasons for his death had nothing to do with his ideas and were largely political. ‘Ayn al-Qozat, a very prominent voice in Hamadani society and a person of great public influence, was a vehement critic of the Seljuq regime and its injustices towards the poor and the needy. Itwas therefore in the Seljuqs’ best interest to murder ‘Ayn al-Qozat, and to do so by justifying it as a state-sponsored execution of a person proven to have been a “heretic.”

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Jules Janssens’ Review of Al-Ghazali, The Condemnation of Pride and Self-Admiration

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Poised on the Higher Horizon: Seeing God in the Sahara – Ariela Marcus-Sells

Abstract:

“This article presents an Arabic transcription and complete English translation of an untitled text – labelled “Khalwa ” in the manuscript catalogue – attributed to S ī d ī  al-Mukhtār al-Kunt ī , a Saharan scholar and Suteacher of the late-eighteenth century. In the accompanying commentary, I demonstrate how this textdraws together two passages in the Qur’ān: the ambiguous visionary encounters of 53:1-18 and Moses’srequest to see God in 7:142-143 to argue that, unlike Moses, Muḥammad received a direct vision of God. I further argue that, for S ī di al-Mukhtār al-Kunt ī , the question of seeing God was linked to his concern over legitimate and illegitimate knowledge from the realm of the unseen (ʿālam al-ghayb ). Intertextual references demonstrate that S ī d ī  al-Mukhtār understood the friends of God to occupy the same role in thespiritual hierarchy as Muḥammad and the prophets. Read in this context, “Khalwa ” suggests that the friends of God might be able to follow Muḥammad’s example, see God with their own eyes, and thus master the sciences of the unseen”

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Yousef Casewit – The Mystics of al-Andalus: Ibn Barrajan and Islamic Thought in the Twelfth Century.

Abstract:

Gerek popüler kültür gerek akademik camiada ilgi odağı olmaya eden Endülüs mistikleri, bir okul olarak bütüncül ve detaylı bir şekilde çalışılmayı beklemektedir.* Araştırmacılar Endülüs mistiklerinin genel olarak İslam düşüncesi üzerindeki önemli etkilerini vurgulamakla birlikte, sadece İbn Meserre (ö. 319/931) ve İbn Arab (ö. 638/1240) gibi IV/X. ve VII/  XIII. yüzyılın öne çıkan isimleri hak ettikleri ilginin bir kısmını dir.1 Ne var ki bu iki dönem arasında geçiş rolü üstlenen İbn Berrecân (ö536/1142), İbnü’l-Arîf (ö. 536/1141) ve İbn Kasî (ö.gibiVI/XII. yüzyıl teşekkül dönemi temsilcileri kısmen ihmal edilmiştir. Chicago Üniversitsi’nden Yousef Casewit’in The Mystics of al-Andalus: IbnBarraj a n and Islamic Thought in the Twelfth Century  başlıklı çalışması, alandaki boşluğu doldurarak klasik dönem İslam düşüncesini daha iyi kavramak adına dikkate değer ve umut verici bir adımdır.

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Signs on the Horizons: Meetings with Men of Knowledge and Illumination – Michael Sugich

Abstract:

SIGNS ON THE HORIZONS is an enthralling contemporary memoir of one seeker’s interactions with men who have transcended the ordinary and achieved stations of spirituality and enlightenment that in the modern world we only attribute to the Biblical fathers of ancient times or to myth. Michael Sugich, an American writer who was initiated into a traditional Sufi order over forty years ago and who lived for 23 years in the sacred city of Makkah Al Mukaramah, has kept company with some of the greatest Sufi saints of the age from many parts of the world. His book is a unique eye-witness narrative of a mystical tradition that today hides in plain sight, veiled by the turbulence and materialism gripping the Muslim world. It is a spellbinding personal memoir told with eloquence, empathy, self-effacing humor, insight and love

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Sufism and Quranic Ethics – Atif Khalil

Abstract:

The Qur’ān lies at the heart of Muslim spirituality, and provides the fount and wellspring for its doctrines and practices. To the extent that classical Islam as a whole was animated in both form and spirit by its central Scripture, all the way from law and ritual to theology and the arts, it would only be natural to find its reverberations running throughout its mysticism as well.Indeed, some of the most influential literary expressions of Sufism, ranging from Ghazālī’s (d. 1111) Iḥyā’ ‘ūlum al-dīn (Reviving the Religious Sciences) to Rūmī’s (d. 1273) Mathnawī-i ma‘nawī (Couplets of Inner Meaning), took on the form of commentaries of the holy text, albeit in a different key, not unlike medieval Jewish works that were often analogously rooted in th Torah. “Everything of which we speak in our meetings and in our writings,” Ibn Arabī (d. 1240) would write, “comes from the Qur’ān and its treasures.”

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Review of Sufism and Deconstruction: A Comparative Study of Derrida and Ibn ‘Arabi by Ian Almond

Abstract:

When William C. Chittick published his encyclopedic Sufi Path of Knowledge: Ibn al-‘Arabi’s Metaphysics of Imagination almost thirty years ago, he made readily available to the English speaking world,for the first time, lengthy excerpts drawn primarily from the thirteenth century Andalusian thinker’s most comprehensive summation of Sufi thought in the Meccan Revelations. Chittick’s most significant contribu-tion, arguably, lay in the virtually unparalleled lucidity with which he introduced and translated a range of key passages authored by a medieval figure notorious for his often elliptical and allusive style of writing. This was a tremendous accomplishment for a single scholar, the full extent of which can be measured today by SPK’s standing as probably the most widely cited secondary source in the field of Ibn al-‘Arabi studies

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Love and Beauty in Sufism

Abstract:

Love and beauty have been defining elements of Islam from its inception. The introduction to each sūrah of the Qurʾān,Bismill āh al-raḥmān al-raḥī m, repeats two Divine Names that convey God’s omnibenevolence. These names are usually rendered using the terms “Mercy”and “Compassion,” but as some have argued, “In the Name of God, The Ever-Loving,the All-Loving” better captures the meaning of this phrase. In the Qurʾān God also states“My loving-mercy (raḥma)encompasses all things” (Q. 7:156; cf. Q. 40:7) and “He has ordained loving-mercy for Himself ” (Q. 6:12; cf. Q. 6:54). Q. 17:110 equates the Divine Name al-Raḥmān,“The Ever-Loving,” with the supreme Divine Name, All āh: “Say, “Call upon God  (Allāh), or call upon the Ever-Loving  (al-Raḥmān). Whichever you call upon, to Him belong the most beautiful names.”” Beyond these verses that embed love, mercy, and compassion in the Divine Nature,God sends the Prophet Muhammad out of loving-mercy: “ And We sent you not, save as a loving-mercy (raḥma)unto the worlds” (21:107). The Prophet, in turn, enjoins loving-mercy upon the believers: “Show loving-mercy to those on earth, and He Who is in heaven will

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