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  1. fan Per Rumi’s Spiritual Shiism By: Seyed G Safavi London Academy of Iranian Studies, UK Abstract The present paper aims to provide textual evidence in support of Rumi’s spiritual shiism. The evidence will be taken from Rumi’s Mathnawi. Shiism, in its true form, believes in the welayat (authority) of Imam Ali and his eleven descendents following the demise of Prophet Muhammad. Allah has chosen Ali and his descendents, as the true spiritual and religious successors of Prophet Muhammad, after whom there will always be a representative from Ali’s family to guide and lead human kind. This paper deals with three types of welayat: solar, lunar and stellar welayats. Interpretation of the Mathnawi text by ‘conceptual’, ‘synoptic’ and ‘hermeneutic circle’ research techniques – makes clear that Maulana Jalal-Din Rumi honoured the office of the Imamate that is the authority – Wilayah of Allah, the Prophet Muhammad and his 12 Divinely appointed successors. In this context, Maulana focuses on the Wilayah of Imam ‘Ali –the first Divine successor of the Prophet Mohammad. According to Dr Shahram Pazouki “Maulawi is a Shiite, not in the current sense of the jurists or dialectical theologians, but in its true meaning, that is, Allah only appoints the wali, belief in the continuing spirituality and walayah of the Prophet Mohammad in the person of Imam ‘Ali and his sons which appointed by Allah. Allah appointed Ali to be the spiritual successor and wali after the prophet Mohammad and belief that after the prophet there is always a living spiritual guide, wali, from Imam ‘Ali family on the way of love. Then here there is different between spiritual Shiism and jurisprudence Shiism. The Sufis believe that in every period of time there is a divine spiritual guide or wali,and that it is only through him that one cam find the way to Allah. Walayah is the reality of Sufism and inner aspect of islam.the wali is the shadow of Allah on earh.the wali is the perfect of the age and the intermediary of grace from Allah to man. Walayah differs from caliphate .it is possible to engage in choosing the caliph by giving him their vote, but only Allah appoints the wali. Allah appointed ‘Ali to be the spiritual successor and wali after the prophet ohammad”. (Pazouki, Shahram. (2003). Spiritual Walayah. In: SG. Safavi(ed), RUMI’S THOUGHTS. Tehran: Salman Azadeh Publication) ‘Ali appointed as wali by Allah is based on some Qur’an verses and prophet Mohammad narrations such as balegh ma onzel ilaik (Chapter 5:67), alum akmalt lakom dinakom(Chapter 5:3), Hadith Ghadir Khoma and Ttheqlain. What is important is believing that after the prophet, walayah continued in ‘Ali and after ‘Ali ,walayah continued through the other Shiite Imams which are appointed as wali by Allah. Shi’ism is based upon the principle of Imamah or Wilayah (referred to in gnostic – Irfanic literature as ‘The Perfect Man’ – Insan al-Kamil). Qur’anic and ahadith references, narrated by all Muslim sources, confirm that love for the Prophet’s progeny is a basic precept of Islam. The Mathnawi evidences that Maulana believed in the Wilayah of Imam ‘Ali, one of the main principles of Shi’ah Islam. The different levels between Imamah and Wilayah: The Ultimate Guardian – Wali is Allah, followed, in order, by: The Prophet Muhammad and the 12 Imams. As the Prophet and the 12 Imams are all manifestations of ‘The Perfect Man’ who represent Divine Guardianship in their times – Imamah in Shi’ah literature, and ‘The Perfect Man’ in Sufi literature, correspond to the same identity. That the essence of ‘The Perfect Man’ in Sufism is denoted by Imamah – the distinguishing principle of Shi’ism, indicates that Sufis, regardless of the religious practices they follow – taqlid, are, in this respect, Shi’ah Muslims. In the ‘Irfanic view there are two distinct types of Wilayah, “General Wilayah” – “Wilayah ‘Ammah” and “Specific Wilayah” –“Wilayah Khassah”. General Wilayah – Wilayah ‘Ammah (Lit. Stellar), comprises two levels: 1) The first starts with “withdrawal” – “takhliyyah”, and ends with the station of the “nearness of supererogatory works” –“Qorb Nawafil.” When Allah becomes the eyes, ears, and tongue of His servant, the seeker of truth – salik achieves the state –maqam of “the reality of certainty” – “Haq al-Yaqin”. 2) The second level relates to those – annihilated in “the Real” –Haqq – who remain in the Existence of the King of Existence The final stage of this state is referred to as “Maqam Qab Quysayn”. “Specific Wilayah”, Wilayah Khassah, is only held by the Prophet Muhammad and his Divinely appointed successors from his Ahl al-Bayt,Prophet’s Houshold(The family of the Prophet,specificly his daughter Fatima, her husband ‘Ali, and their children Hassan and Hussein). Such Specific Wilayah proceeds from Maqam Qab-e Quysayn, to the achievement of “The Station of Manifestation on Intrinsic Discourser” – “Maqam-e Mazhariyyat-eTajaliya-e Zati” and “Maqam-e Aw Adna”. At that stage, those who hold this Wilayah comprehend the seventh inner level, Battn Haftom of Kalam Allah, i.e. the word of Allah, namely the Qur’an. It is recorded in one narration – hadith, regarding the Qur’an that, ‘The Qur’an has a superficial level and an inner level of understanding that encompasses seven inner depths.’ ( ‘Alama Tabataeai, Tafsir Al-Mizan, Vol. 3, p. 72). Holders of Wilayah Khassah – Wali’s, are like a great tree of which Abdal, Noqaba and Awtad are mere shadows. For every age there is a single Perfect Man – Qutub, with all other spiritual beings of the age under his shadow. (See verses 1924 – 2305 Book 3 of Rumi’s Mathnawi and Mulla Hadi Sabsavari’s commentary on verse 2003 of Book Three of the Mathnaw‡). Maulana said Wilayah Khassah has two aspects, Wilayah Shamsiyyah (Lit.Solar) and Wilayah Qamariyyah (Lit. Lunar). (Book Three verses 3104 – 3106). The manifestation of Wilayah Shamsiyyah is Wilayah Muhammadiyyah – held by Prophet Muhammad Mustafa, while Wilayah Qamariyyah, refers specifically to those of his progeny – Ahl Al-Bayt, who Allah appointed to inherit his authority and succeed him. According to Mathnawi Book One, verses 2959 – 2980, Wilayah Allawiyyah – that is the Wilayah of Imam‘Ali and the inheritors of his authority – falls within Wilayah Muhammadiyyah. According to Book One, verses 3761 – 3766, the Wilayah Qamariyyah of Imam ‘Ali falls within the Wilayah Shamsiyyah of the Prophet Muhammad. Rumi based his repeated comments of Imam ‘Ali’s Wilayah Khassah, on the Prophet Muhammad’s saying, ‘Whomever I hold authority over, ‘Ali holds authority over’ – ‘Man kuntum Mawla fa ‘Aliyun Mawla’. In the first story at the beginning of Book One of the Mathnawi, ‘The King and the Handmaiden’, the Perfect Man – Pir or Hakim Haziq is raised in reference to one of Imam ‘Ali’s titles ‘The Approved One’ – Murtadha, whom he then proceeds to describe as, ‘The One who holds authority over the people – Mula al-Qum’. (Mathnawi Book One verses 99- 100). In the last story of Book One – A Story about Imam ‘Ali, Rumi discusses nafs mutma’nah (verses 3721-3991) and introduces Imam ‘Ali as a holder of Wilayah Khassah. In the last book, Book Six, he again raises the Wilayah of Imam ‘Ali based upon the Prophet’s saying ‘Whomever I hold authority over, ‘Ali holds authority over’, ‘Man kuntum Mawla fa ‘Aliyun Mawla’. Book Six, verse 4538. Thus, the Mathnawi of Rumi both begins and ends with the Wilayah of Imam ‘Ali. Sequential textual evidence in the Mathnawi that supports Rumi’s acceptance of Imam ‘Ali’s Wilayah and spiritual superiority over other companions of the Prophet. 1) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘AMIR AL-MUMININ – COMMANDER OF THE FAITHFUL – TRANSLATED BY NICHOLSON AS PRINCE OF THE FAITHFUL’ – in the story titled Imam ‘Ali. See Book One, heading after verse 3720. 2) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE ONE WHO ACTS SINCERELY’ –‘Learn how to act sincerely from ‘Ali’. Book One, verse 3721 (first part). 3) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali u as, ‘THE LION OF Allah’ – ‘Know that the lion of Allah (‘Ali ) was purged of all deceit’. Book One, verse 3721 (second part). 4) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali u as, ‘THE PRIDE OF EVERY PROPHET’ –‘Ali, the pride of every Prophet’. Book One, verse 3723. 5) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE PRIDE OF EVERY SAINT’ – ‘Ali the pride of every Prophet and every saint.’ Book One, verse 3723. 6) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE FACE BEFORE WHICH THE MOON BOWS LOW’ – ‘He spat on the countenance before which the face of the moon bows low in the place of worship.’ Book One, verse 3724. 7) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE LION OF THE LORD’ – ‘In bravery you are the lion of the Lord: in generosity who indeed knows who you are?’ Book One, verse 3732. 8.) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘ALL MIND AND EYE’ – ‘O ‘Ali you who are all mind and eye, relate a little of that which you have seen.’ Book One, verse 3745. 9) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘FALCON OF THE EMPYREAN’ – ‘Tell, O falcon of the empyrean that finds goodly prey, what you have seen at this time from the Maker.’ Book One, verse 3750. 10) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE LEARNED WHO PERCEIVES THE UNSEEN’ – ‘Your eyes have learned to perceive the unseen while the eyes of the bystanders are sealed.’ Book One verse 3751. 11) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali u as, ‘THE ONE WHO IS APPROVED BY Allah’ – ‘Reveal the mystery O ‘Ali you who is approved by Allah.’ Book One, verse 3751 (part 1). 12 Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as being, ‘GOODLY EASE’ – ‘O you who are a goodly ease after evil fate.’ Book One, verse 3752. 13) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘ORB OF THE MOON (WILAYAH QAMARIYYAH)’ – ‘From you it shone forth on me, how could you conceal it? Without tongue you are darting rays of light, like the moon. But if the moonsorb come to speech, it more quickly leads the night-travellers the (right) way. They become safe from error and heedlessness: the voice of the moon prevails over the voice of the ghoul.’ Book One, verse 3759-3761. 14) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali u as, ‘LIGHT UPON LIGHT’ – ‘In as much as the moon (even) without speech shows the way, when it speaks it becomes light upon light,’ Book One, verse 3762. 15) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘GATE OF THE CITY OF KNOWLEDGE (‘Ali GATE OF WILAYAH MUHAMMADIYYAH)’ – ‘Since you are the Gate of the City of Knowledge, since you are the beams of the sun of clemency (Prophet Muhammad ).’ Book One verse 3763. This verse refers to the Prophet Muhammad saying, ‘I am the City of Knowledge and ‘Ali is its gate, so anyone who seeks knowledge should enter through its gate.’ 16) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘GATE OF MERCY’ – ‘Remain open forever.’ Book One, verse 3765 (part one). 17) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘ENTRANCE-HALL TO ‘NONE IS LIKE UNTO HIM.’ Book One, verse 3765. This is a reference to Surah Ikhlas – Qur’an 112. 18) Rumi refers to Imam ¡Ali u as, ‘THE SUN OF WILAYAH’ – ‘Speak, O Prince of the faithful, that my soul may stir within my body like an embryo. How has the embryo the means (to stir) during the period when it is ruled (by the stars)? It comes (turns) from the stars towards the sun. When the time comes for the embryo to receive the (vital) spirit, at that time the sun becomes its helper. Book One, verses 3773-5. These verses refer to the Ahl al-Bayt’s Wilayah Qamariyyah being within the Wilayah Shamsiyyah of the Prophet Muhammad . Here Rumi clari fies that those who hold general or stellar Wilayah – Wilayah ‘Ammah / Wilayah Najmiyyah are merely stars in comparison to ‘Ali who, being like the sun, represents the Perfect Man or perfect shaykh. Thus, while those who hold Wilayah ‘Ammah may aid a ‘Searcher for Truth’ – Salik, complete guidance is only obtainable via those who hold Wilayah Shamsiyyah – a reference to Imam ‘Ali and his successors. Here Rumi presents the three types of Wilayah described in the introduction – Wilayah Shamsiyyah and Wilayah Qamariyyah –aspects of Specific Wilayah – Wilayah Khassah, and Wilayah ‘Ammah, that is also referred to as Stellar Wilayah – Wilayah Najmiyyah. These may be considered Advanced and Element ary levels of Wilayah. 19) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as ‘HOLDER OF SOLAR WILAYAH – WILAYAH SHAMSIYYAH’ – ‘When the time comes for the embryo to receive the (vital) spirit, at that time the sun becomes its helper. This embryo is brought into movement by the sun, for the sun quickly endows it with ‘spirit’. ‘ Book One, verses 3775-3776. On the spiritual journey towards Allah, the embryo – Spiritual Seeker – Salik, obedient to Wilayah Allawiyyah, arrives at her/his destination. 20) Rumi refers to all Spiritual Seekers having, if they are aware of it not, an inherent connection with Wilayah Allawiyyah, that is, the Wilayah Shamsiyyah of Imam ‘Ali – ‘By the hidden way that is remote from our senses-perception, the sun in the heavens has many ways,’ Book One, verse 3779. It is via that inherent connection, with the Wilayah Shamsiyyah of ‘Ali, that exists beyond the physical senses, that the Spiritual Seeker is able to develop. 21) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as ‘THE ROUTE OF SPIRITUAL GUIDANCE – WILAYAH’, – ‘And the way whereby it makes the Ruby red and the way whereby it gives the lightening-flash to the (iron) horse shoe. And the way whereby it ripens the fruit, and the way whereby it gives heart to one who is distraught.’ Book One verse 3781-82. These verses refer to Qur’an 100 – Surah Al-‘adiyat that was revealed to illuminate the status of Imam ‘Ali. 22) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘A FALCON WITH SHINING WINGS’ –‘Say it O falcon with shining wings,’ Book One verse, 3783 (part one). 23) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE ONE WHO LEARNED FROM AND BECAME FAMILIAR WITH THE TRUE KING OF THE UNIVERSE’ – ‘Who has learned from the King and His fore arm.’ Book One, verse 3783 (part two). 24) Rumi refers to Imam Ali as, ‘ROYAL FALCON OF Allah WHO CATCHES THE ANGA.’ – ‘Say it, O Royal falcon who catches the Anga, O you who vanquished an army all by yourself.’ Book One, verse 3784. 25) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE ONE NATION OF HUMANITY’ –‘You alone are the (entire community) you are one and a hundred thousand. Say it O you to whose falcon your slave has fallen prey’. Book One, verse 3785. This verse refers to an ayah of the Qur’an in which Allah tells us that all people are ‘a single nation’ Qur’an 2:213. While all have the potential, only some actually follow the Wilayah of ‘Ali , the one who is obedient to Allah. 26) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE SERVANT OF Allah’ – ‘He said I am wielding my sword for Allah’s sake. I am the servant of Allah; I am not under the command ofthe body.’ Book One verse 3787. 27) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE LION OF Allah’ – ‘I am the lion of Allah, not the lion of my passions.’ Book One, verse 3788 (part one). 28) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘HE WHOSE DEED WITNESSES HIS RELIGION’ – ‘My deed bears witness to my religion.’ Book One verse 3787 (part two). 29) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE MANIFESTATION OF THE WILL OF Allah’ – ‘In war I am the manifestation of the truth of “ It was not you who threw when you threw”: but the sword and the wielder is the (Divine) Sun.’ Book One, verse 3789. This is a reference to Qur’an 8:17. 30) Rumi refers to Imam ¡Ali u as, ‘ANNIHILATED IN Allah’ – ‘I have removed the baggage of “ self” out of the way.’ Book One, verse 3790 (part one). 31) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE ONE WHOSE TAWHID IS “ESSENTIAL” TAWHID’ – ‘I have deemed (what is) other than Allah to be non-existent.’ Book One, verse 3790 (part two). 32) Rumi refers to Imam ¡Ali u as, ‘SHADOW OF THE DIVINE’ – ‘I am a shadow, the Sun is my Lord.’ Book One, verse 3791 (part one). Ali’s Wilayah is from Allah. 33) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE CHAMBERLAIN OF Allah’ – ‘I am the chamberlain, not the curtain (that prevents approach) to Him.’ Book One verse 3791 (part two). ‘Ali’s function is to guide people to Allah. 34) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘FILLED WITH THE PEARLS OF UNION WITH Allah’ – ‘I am filled with the pearls of union like a (jewelled) sword.’ Book One verse 3792 (part one). 35) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE REVIVER OF SPIRITUAL LIFE’ –‘In battle I revive but do not kill people.’ Book One, verse 3792 (part two). 36) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘ADVANCER OF LEVELS OF SPIRITUAL ESSENCE AND DIVINE MORALITY’ – ‘Blood does not cover the sheen of my sword: how should the wind sweep away my clouds? Book One verse 3793. The great commentator of Rumi’s Mathnawi, Akbar Abadi said that ‘Sword and clouds here refer to the advanced level of the Spiritual Essence of ¡Ali u – wind refers to negative morality (Akhlaq Nafsani) and the sheen of the sword to Divine Morality. Clear reference that negative attributes do not impinge upon the perfected attributes of ‘Ali u.’ See Akbar Abadi, Sharh Mathnawi, Book 1. P. 307. 37) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘MOUNTAIN OF FORBEARANCE, PATIENCE AND JUSTICE’ – ‘I am not a straw, I am a mountain of forbearance, patience and justice: how should the fierce wind carry off the mountain?’ Book One, verse 3794. 38) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘Allah’S BUILDING BEING THE BEING OF ‘ALI ’ – ‘I am a mountain and my being is His building. If I become like a straw, my wind (that which moves me) is the recollection of Him.’ Book One, verse 3797. 39) In reference to Imam ‘Ali , Rumi writes, ¡HIS COMMANDER IS ‘LOVE OF Allah’ – ‘My longing is not stirred save by His wind; my captain is naught but Love of the One.’ Book One, verse 3798. 40) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘REPRESSOR OF ANGER’ – ‘Anger, king over kings is to me but a slave: even anger I have bound under the bridle.’ Book One, verse 3799. 41) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘IMMERSED IN THE LIGHT OF Allah’ – ‘I am immersed in the light although my roof is ruined.’ Book One, verse 3801 (part one). 42) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘A DIVINE GARDEN’ – ‘I have become a gardenalthough I am (styled) Father of Dust – Bu Turab.’ Book One, verse 3801 (part two). This verse refers to the hadith in which the Prophet titled ‘Ali; Abu Turab. 43) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘LOVER OF Allah’ – ‘That my name may be ‘He Loves for the sake of Allah.’ That my desire may be ‘He hates for the sake of Allah’ Book One,verse 3803. 44) Rumi refers to the manifestation of ‘Ali’s ‘generosity’ as, ‘GIVING FOR Allah’ – ‘Thatmy generosity may be ‘He gives for the sake of Allah’ Book One verse 3804 (part one). 45) Rumi refers to the mani festation of ‘Ali’s ‘withholding’ as, ‘WITHHOLDING FOR THE SAKE OF Allah’ – ‘That my being may be “He withholds for Allah’s sake” ’. Book One, verse 3804 (part two). Verses 3803 and 4 refer to a hadith, ‘The faith of any who give for the sake of Allah or withhold for the sake of Allah or love for Allah or hate or marry for Allah, will attain perfection.’ Foruzanfar, Ahadith Mathnawi, P.37, Tehran 1361. 46) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘BELONGING ENTIRELY TO Allah’ – ‘I belong entirely to Allah, I do not belong to any other.’ Book One, verse 3805 (part two). The will and being of Imam ‘Ali is circumscribed by the Will and Existence of Allah. 47) In reference to Imam Ali Rumi writes, ‘ALI’S ACTIONS ARE FOR Allah ALONE DRAWN FROM HIS u ILLUMINATED KNOWLEDGE OF Allah’ – ‘And that which I do for Allah’s sake is (not done in) conformity, it is not fancy or opinion, it is naught but intuition.’ Book One, verse 3806. ‘Ali’s knowledge is intuitive rather than theoretical. 48) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘ATTACHED TO Allah ALONE’ – ‘I have been freed from effort and search, I have tied my sleeve to the skirt of Allah.’ Book One verse 3807. 49) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘SEEING Allah EVERYWHERE’ – ‘If I am flying, I behold the place to which I soar; and if I am circling, I behold the axis on which I revolve.’ Book One verse 3808. 50) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE HOLDER OF LUNAR AND SOLAR WILAYAH, WILAYAH QAMARIYYAH AND WILAYAH SHAMSIYYAH’ – ‘I am the moon and the sun is before me as my guide.’ Book One, verse 3809 (part two). 51) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘GATE OF DIVINE KNOWLEDGE’ –‘Come in! I will open the door for you.’ Book One verse 3841. 52) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘GRANTING ETERNAL TREASURE TO HIS FOLLOWERS’ – ‘What then do I bestow on the doer of righteousness? Know you, I bestow treasures and kingdoms everlasting.’ Book One verse 3843. 53) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘MASTER OF THE SPIRIT’ – ‘But do not grieve: I am intercessor for you: I am the spirit’s master, I am not the body’s slave.’ Book One, verse 3942. 54) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘Sun of The Noble’ – ‘This body has no value in my sight: without my body I am the noble (in spirit) the sun of the spirit.’ Book One verse 3943. 55) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE GUIDANCE OF KINGS’ –‘Outwardly he strives aft er power and authority, but (only) that he may show princes the right way and judgement. That he may another spirit to the Princedom; that he may give fruit to the palm tree of the Caliphate.’ Book One, verse 3946-47. 56) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE DIVINE BALANCE’ – ‘You have really been the balance with the just nature of the One (Allah). Book One, verse 3981 (part one). 57) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘The Balance By Which To Weigh Other Saints’ – ‘Nay, you have been the pivot of every balance.’ Book One, verse 3981 (part two). 58) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE ILLUMINATION OF ¡HIS WILAYAH IS THE LIGHT OF Allah’S WILAYAH’ – ‘I am the slave of that eye-seeking lamp from which the lamp receives its splendour.’ Book One, verse 3984. 59) Rumi refers to Imam ‘Ali as, ‘THE PEARL OF Allah’S OCEAN OF LIGHT’ – ‘I am the slave of the billow of that Sea of Light that brings a pearl like this into view.’ Book One verse 3985. 60) Rumi refers to Imam Hussein as, ‘KING OF RELIGION, ROYAL AND PURE SPIRIT’ – ‘A royal spirit escaped from a prison; why should we rend our garments and how should we gnaw our hands. Since they (Hussein and his family) were Kings of the (true) religion, it was the hour of joy for them when they broke their bounds.’ Book Six verse 797-8. In Book Six of the Mathnawi, Rumi refers, with deep respect, to Imam Hussein son of Imam ‘Ali as Royal Spirit and King of Religion. Although greatly upset by it, he introduces the Day of Imam Hussein’s martyrdom – ‘Ashura, as a day of mourning for his spirit. Rumi regards love for Imam Hussein as the continuation of love for the Prophet Muhammad , in the same way that an ear loves a pearl. He describes Prophet Muhammad as being the ear and Imam Hussein u the pearl, ‘Don’t you know that the Day of ‘Ashura is a day of mourning for a single soul that is more excellent than an entire century. How this tragedy should be lightly estimated by a true believer? Love for the earring (Hussein) is in proportion to love for the ear (Prophet Muhammad). In the view of a true believer, the mourning for that pure spirit is more celebrated than a hundred floods of Noah.’ Book Six verses 790-92. (Verses 776-805 refer specifically to the Shi’ah community in the city of Halab, whom Maulana criticises for having spirits that are asleep. He tells them to mourn for their spirits that are as good as dead. He then refers to the Royal Spirit of Imam Hussein that escaped from prison and is still alive. Some commentators have misunderstood this to imply that Rumi was against Shi’ah which from the above references he clearly was not. From a synoptical understanding of the Mathnawi, each of the six books of the Mathnawi contains 12 discourses – a total of 72. The repetition of 12 discourses was not accidental but rather a tribute to each of the 12 Imams l of Ahl al-Bayt – spiritual inheritors and successors of Prophet Muhammad. The 72 discourses equate to Imam Hussein’s 72 companions who were martyred with him at Karbala. Since their inception, the sama¡ of the Mevlevi order pays respects to the martyrs of Karbala. In Maulana’s shrine in Konya, the names of the fourteen Masumin, the Prophet to the twelfth Imam (Muhammad, ‘Ali, Fatima, Hassan, Hussein, ‘Ali ibn Hassan, Mohammad ibn ‘Ali, J’afar ibn Muhammad, Musa ibn Ja’far, ‘Ali ibn Musa, Muhammad ibn ‘Ali, ‘Ali ibn Muhammad, Hassan ibn ‘Ali, Muhammad ibn Hassan (Mahdi)) are inscribed on the walls of his burial chamber. This textual evidence illustrates that Maulana was a real Shi’ah of ‘Truth Shi’ism’, Tashaya Haqqiqi, and follower of Imam ‘Ali (A.S). As Dr Shahram Pazouki said “the conclusion we would like to draw from this is that the most important principle shared by both Shi’ism and Sufism is the question of Imamate or Wayalaah, and the wali is the divine mediator and guide through whom God saves humanity. The point that should be taken into consideration here is that, contrary to what is commonly asserted, Shi’ism originally is not a political movement against the caliphs or a jurisprudential school, alongside the Sunnite school of jurisprudence, or a school of kalam with affinity to the Mu’tazilites. Shi’ism is a heartfelt way based on the concept of wayalah, and the differences in jurisprudence, politics and theology are secondary issues aside from this main core. Thus, in true Shi’ism, one believes that God is known not by one’s own reasoning and speculations, nor by narrations handed down through others, but by submission to the wali and wayfaring on the path of love. Thus we see that in his Mathnawi, Mawlawi speaks favourably about all the first four caliphs, but his tone of speaking differs completely when he comes to Ali, because he recognises him as being the wali after the Prophet”.(Pazouki, Shahram. (2003). Spiritual Walayah. In: S.G. Safavi(ed), RUMI’S THOUGHTS. Tehran: Salman Azadeh Publication) Bibliography 1- See on Rumi’s Life : Aflaki, Ahmad, Manaqeb al – ‘arefin, Tehran, 1983. Alavi, Mahvash, Maulana, Khodawandegar-e Tariqat-e Ishq, Tehran, 1998. Chittick, William, Me & Rumi, Kentucky, 2004. Foruzanfar, Badi’a al- Zaman, Mawlavi, Tehran, 1971/1354. Golpinarli, Abdulbaki, translated ito Farsi by Sobhani, Tofiq, Mowlana, Tehran, 1996. Iqbal, Afzal, Rumi, Lahore, 1991. Lewis, Franklin, Rumi: Past and Present, East and West, Oxford, 2,000. Sepahsalar, Faridun, Mowlavi, Tehran, 1983. Shams al-Din Shirazi, Maqalat-e Shams Tabrizi, ed. Mohamad ‘Ali Movahed, Tehran, 1990. Zarrinkub, Abdul Hosayn, Pele-pele molaqat ta Khoda, Tehran, 1994. 2- For a full account of Maul ana’s theological and spiritual thought see: Chittick, W, The Sufi Path of Love, SUNY, New York, 1983. Este’lami,Muhammad, edited with commentary,”Masnavi-ye Jalal al-Din Mohammad-e Balkhi”, 7 volumes, (6th edition), Tehran, 2000/1379. Schimmel, A, The Triumphal Sun, Fine Books, London, 1978. Homaei, Jalal al-Din, Mowlawi nameh, Tehran, 1996/1374. Ja’fari, Mohammad Taqi, Mowlawi wa Jahanbinih dar maktabhay-e sharq wa gharb, Tehran, 1992/1370. Safavi, Seyed G., Rumi’s Thoughts, Tehran, 2003. Safavi, Seyed Ghahreman, The Structure of Rumi’s Mathnawi, London, 2006 Turkmen, Erkan, The Essence of Rumi’s Mathnavi Including his Life and Works, Konya, 2004. 3-See on Classical Persian Literature: Arberry, A J, Classical Persian Literature, George Allen and Unwin, London, 1958. Baldick, J, “Persian Sufi Poetry up to the FifteenthCentury” in Morrison, G. (ed) History of Persian Literature, Brill, Leiden, 1981. De Bruijn, J T P, Persian Sufi Poetry, Curzon, Richmond, 1997. 4- See on Rumi’s spiritual shiism: Ashtiani, Seyed, Jalal al-Din, Sharh-e Moqadameh Qaysari, Mashhad, Homaei, Jalal al-Din, Mowlawi nameh, Tehran, 1995/1374 Khowrazmi, Kamal al- Din Hossein b. Hassan, Jawaher al-asrar wa Zawaher al-anwar, Sharh-e Mathnawi, ed. Shariat,M.J., Isfahan, Khowrazmi, Taj al-Din Hossein, Sharh-e Fosos al-hekam, ed. Najib Mail Harawi, Tehran, 1985/1364. Safavi, Seyed, G., Rumi’s Thoughts, Tehran, 2003 Safavi, Seyed, G, The Structure of The Rumi’s Mathnawi, London, 2006. Sufi terms Wali divine spiritual guide Walaya sanctity Awlia the spiritual successors Wali Perfect Man, Shadow of Allah, Divine mediator, Divine guide Baqa subsistence Fana annihilation Qorb-e Nawafil the nearness of supererogatory works Ibadat-e wajib obligatory work/worship Takhalli withdrawal Tahalli Adornment Maqam station Haqq the Real Haqq al yaqin the reality of certainty Qotb poles, absolute pole Zahir manifest, outward, outer Batin non-mani fest, inward, inner Mazhar locus of mani festation Zati(dhati) intrinsic Tajalli discloser Maqam-e Mazhariyat-e Tajalli-e Zati The Station of Manifestation on Intrinsic Discloser
  2. Which Hawza city (Qom, Najaf, etc.) is best for learning Irfan? Which specific program do you recommend? Are these degrees connected to Academic degrees like Masters and PhD. I want to go to Hawza and focus primarily on the science of Irfan. I know it will take many years to master. I want to focus on theoretical and eventually practical Irfan.
  3. Mulla Sadra (Sadr al-Din Muhammad al-Shirazi) (1571/2-1640) THE HISTORIC HOUSE OF MULLA SADRA IN KAHAK QOM Sadr al-Din al-Shirazi (Mulla Sadra) is perhaps the single most important and influential philosopher in the Muslim world in the last four hundred years. The author of over forty works, he was the culminating figure of the major revival of philosophy in Iran in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Devoting himself almost exclusively to metaphysics, he constructed a critical philosophy which brought together Peripatetic, Illuminationist and gnostic philosophy along with Shi'ite theology within the compass of what he termed a 'metaphilosophy', the source of which lay in the Islamic revelation and the mystical experience of reality as existence.Mulla Sadra's metaphilosophy was based on existence as the sole constituent of reality, and rejected any role for quiddities or essences in the external world. Existence was for him at once a single unity and an internally articulated dynamic process, the unique source of both unity and diversity. From this fundamental starting point, Mulla Sadra was able to find original solutions to many of the logical, metaphysical and theological difficulties which he had inherited from his predecessors. His major philosophical work is the Asfar (The Four Journeys), which runs to nine volumes in the present printed edition and is a complete presentation of his philosophical ideas. The primacy of existence The systematic ambiguity of existence Substantial motion Epistemology Methodology1. The primacy of existence Sadr al-Din Muhammad ibn Ibrahim ibn Yahya al-Qawami al-Shirazi, known variously as Mulla Sadra, Sadr al-Muta'allihin, or simply Akhund, was born in Shiraz in central Iran in ah 979-80/ad 1571-2. He studied in Isfahan with, among others, Mir Damad and Shaykh Baha' al-Din al-'Amili, Shaykh-e Baha'i, before retiring for a number of years of spiritual solitude and discipline in the village of Kahak, near Qum. Here he completed the first part of his major work, the Asfar (The Four Journeys). He was then invited by Allah-wirdi Khan, the governor of Fars province, to return to Shiraz, where he taught for the remainder of his life. He died in Basra in ah 1050/ad 1640 while on his seventh pilgrimage on foot to Mecca. Safavid Iran witnessed a noteworthy revival of philosophical learning, and Mulla Sadra was this revival's most important figure. The Peripatetic (mashsha'i) philosophy of Ibn Sina had been elaborated and invigorated at the beginning of the Mongol period by Nasir al-Din al-Tusi, and there existed a number of important contributors to this school in the century before Mulla Sadra. Illuminationist (ishraqi) philosophy, originated by Shihab al-Din al-Suhrawardi, had also been a major current (see Illuminationist philosophy). The speculative mysticism of the Sufism of Ibn al-'Arabi had also taken firm root in the period leading up to the tenth century ah (sixteenth century ad), while theology (kalam), particularly Shi'ite theology, had increasingly come to be expressed in philosophical terminology, a process which was initiated in large part by al-Tusi (see Mystical philosophy in Islam; Islamic theology). Several philosophers had combined various strands from this philosophical heritage in their writings, but it was Mulla Sadra who achieved a true fusion of all four, forming what he called 'metaphilosophy' (al-hikma al-muta'aliya), a term he incorporated into the title of his magnum opus, al-Hikma al-muta'aliya fi'l-asfar al-'aqliyya al-arba'a (The Transcendent Wisdom Concerning the Four Intellectual Journeys), known simply as the Asfar. Mulla Sadra made the primacy of existence (asalat al-wujud) the cornerstone of his philosophy. Aristotle (§§11-12) had pointed out that existence was the most universal of predicates and therefore could not be included as one of the categories, and al-Farabi added to this that it was possible to know an essence without first knowing whether it existed or not, existence thus being neither a constitutive element of an essence nor a necessary attribute, and that therefore it must be an accident. But it was Ibn Sina who later became the source for the controversy as to how the accidentality of existence was to be conceived. He had held that in the existence-quiddity (wujud-mahiyya) or existence-essence relationship, existence was an accident of quiddity. Ibn Rushd had criticized this view as entailing a regress, for if the existence of a thing depended on the addition of an accident to it, then the same principle would have to apply to existence itself. This was merely an argument against the existence-quiddity dichotomy, but al-Suhrawardi had added to this another argument, asserting that if existence were an attribute of quiddity, quiddity itself would have to exist before attracting this attribute in order to be thus qualified. From this, al-Suhrawardi deduced the more radical conclusion that existence is merely a mental concept with no corresponding reality, and that it is quiddity which constitutes reality. It was this view, that of the primacy of quiddity (asalat al-mahiyya), which held sway in philosophical writing in Iran up to Mulla Sadra's time. Indeed, Mir Damad, Mulla Sadra's teacher, held this view. However, Mulla Sadra himself took the opposite view, that it is existence that constitutes reality and that it is quiddities which are the mental constructs. By taking the position of the primacy of existence, Mulla Sadra was able to answer the objections of Ibn Rushd and the Illuminationists by pointing out that existence is accidental to quiddity in the mind in so far as it is not a part of its essence. When it is a case of attributing existentiality to existence, however, what is being discussed is an essential attribute; and so at this point the regress stopped, for the source of an essential attribute is the essence itself. 2. The systematic ambiguity of existence A concomitant of Mulla Sadra's theory that reality and existence are identical is that existence is one but graded in intensity; to this he gave the name tashkik al-wujud, which has been usefully translated as the 'systematic ambiguity' of existence. Al-Suhrawardi, in contrast to the peripatetics, had asserted that quiddities were capable of a range of intensities; for example, when a colour, such as blue, intensifies it is not a new species of 'blueness' which replaces the old one, but is rather the same 'blue' intensified. Mulla Sadra adopted this theory but replaced quiddity with existence, which was for him the only reality. This enabled him to say that it is the same existence which occurs in all things, but that existential instances differ in terms of 'priority and posteriority, perfection and imperfection, strength and weakness' (making reality similar to al-Suhrawardi's Light). He was thus able to explain that it was existence and existence alone which had the property of combining 'unity in multiplicity, and multiplicity in unity'. Reality is therefore pure existence, but an existence which manifests itself in different modes, and it is these modes which present themselves in the mind as quiddities. Even the term 'in the mind', however, is merely an expression denoting a particular mode of being, that of mental existence (al-wujud al-dhihni), albeit an extremely attenuated mode. Everything is thus comprehended by existence, even 'nothingness', which must on being conceived assume the most meagre portion of existence in order to become a mental existent. When reality (or rather a mode of existence) presents itself to the mind, the mind abstracts a quiddity from it - being unable, except in exceptional circumstances, to grasp existence intuitively - and in the mind the quiddity becomes, as it were, the reality and existence the accident. However, this 'existence' which the mind predicates of the quiddity is itself merely a notion or concept, one of the secondary intelligibles. It is this which is the most universal and most self-evident concept to which the Aristotelians referred, and which al-Suhrawardi regarded as univocal. But in reality there are not two 'things', existence and quiddity, only existence - not the concept, but the reality - and so 'existence' cannot be regarded as a real attribute of quiddity; for if this were possible quiddity would have to be regarded as already existent, as al-Suhrawardi had objected. 3. Substantial motion Another of the key properties of existence for Mulla Sadra is its transubstantiality, effected through what he termed motion in substance (al-haraka fi'l-jawhar) or substantial motion (al-haraka al-jawhariyya). The peripatetics had held that substance only changes suddenly, from one substance to another or from one instant to another, in generation and corruption (and therefore only in the sublunar world), and that gradual motion is confined to the accidents (quantity, quality, place). They also held that the continuity of movement is something only in the mind, which strings together a potentially infinite series of infinitesimal changes - rather in the fashion of a film - to produce the illusion of movement, although time as an extension is a true part of our experience. What gives rise to movement is an unchanging substrate, part of the essence of which is that it is at an indefinite point in space at some instant in time; in other words, movement is potential in it and is that through which it becomes actual. Mulla Sadra completely rejected this, on the grounds that the reality of this substance, its being, must itself be in motion, for the net result of the peripatetic view is merely a static conglomeration of spatio-temporal events. The movement from potentiality to actuality of a thing is in fact the abstract notion in the mind, while material being itself is in a constant state of flux perpetually undergoing substantial change. Moreover, this substantial change is a property not only of sublunary elemental beings (those composed of earth, water, air and fire) but of celestial beings as well. Mulla Sadra likened the difference between these two understandings of movement to the difference between the abstracted, derivative notion of existence and the existence which is reality itself. Existence in Mulla Sadra's philosophical system, as has been seen, is characterized by systematic ambiguity (tashkik), being given its systematic character by substantial motion, which is always in one direction towards perfection. In other words, existence can be conceived of as a continual unfolding of existence, which is thus a single whole with a constantly evolving internal dynamic. What gives things their identities are the imagined essences which we abstract from the modes of existence, while the reality is ever-changing; it is only when crucial points are reached that we perceive this change and new essences are formed in our minds, although change has been continually going on. Time is the measure of this process of renewal, and is not an independent entity such that events take place within it, but rather is a dimension exactly like the three spatial dimensions: the physical world is a spatio-temporal continuum. All of this permits Mulla Sadra to give an original solution to the problem which has continually pitted philosophers against theologians in Islam, that of the eternity of the world. In his system, the world is eternal as a continual process of the unfolding of existence, but since existence is in a constant state of flux due to its continuous substantial change, every new manifestation of existence in the world emerges in time. The world - that is, every spatio-temporal event from the highest heaven downwards - is thus temporally originated, although as a whole the world is also eternal in the sense that it has no beginning or end, since time is not something existing independently within which the world in turn exists (see Eternity). 4. Epistemology Mulla Sadra's radical ontology also enabled him to offer original contributions to epistemology, combining aspects of Ibn Sina's theory of knowledge (in which the Active Intellect, while remaining utterly transcendent, actualizes the human mind by instilling it with intellectual forms in accordance with its state of preparation to receive these forms) with the theory of self-knowledge through knowledge by presence developed by al-Suhrawardi. Mulla Sadra's epistemology is based on the identity of the intellect and the intelligible, and on the identity of knowledge and existence. His theory of substantial motion, in which existence is a dynamic process constantly moving towards greater intensity and perfection, had allowed him to explain that new forms, or modes, of existence do not replace prior forms but on the contrary subsume them. Knowledge, being identical with existence, replicates this process, and by acquiring successive intelligible forms - which are in reality modes of being and not essential forms, and are thus successive intensifications of existence - gradually moves the human intellect towards identity with the Active Intellect. The intellect thus becomes identified with the intelligibles which inform it. Furthermore, for Mulla Sadra actual intelligibles are self-intelligent and self-intellected, since an actual intelligible cannot be deemed to have ceased to be intelligible once it is considered outside its relation to intellect. As the human intellect acquires more intelligibles, it gradually moves upwards in terms of the intensification and perfection of existence, losing its dependence on quiddities, until it becomes one with the Active Intellect and enters the realm of pure existence. Humans can, of course, normally only attain at best a partial identification with the Active Intellect as long as they remain with their physical bodies; only in the case of prophets can there be complete identification, allowing them to have direct access to knowledge for themselves without the need for instruction. Indeed, only very few human minds attain identification with the Active Intellect even after death. 5. Methodology Even this brief account of Mulla Sadra's main doctrines will have given some idea of the role that is played in his philosophy by the experience of the reality which it describes. Indeed he conceived of hikma (wisdom) as 'coming to know the essence of beings as they really are' or as 'a man's becoming an intellectual world corresponding to the objective world'. Philosophy and mysticism, hikma and Sufism, are for him two aspects of the same thing. To engage in philosophy without experiencing the truth of its content confines the philosopher to a world of essences and concepts, while mystical experience without the intellectual discipline of philosophy can lead only to an ineffable state of ecstasy. When the two go hand in hand, the mystical experience of reality becomes the intellectual content of philosophy. The four journeys, the major sections into which the Asfar is divided, parallel a fourfold division of the Sufi journey. The first, the journey of creation or the creature (khalq) to the Truth (al-haqq), is the most philosophical; here Mulla Sadra lays out the basis of his ontology, and mirrors the stage in the Sufi's path where he seeks to control his lower nafs under the supervision of his shaykh. In the second journey, in the Truth with the Truth, the stage at which the Sufi begins to attract the divine manifestations, Mulla Sadra deals with the simple substances, the intelligences, the souls and their bodies, including therefore his discussion of the natural sciences. In the third journey, from the Truth to creation with the Truth, the Sufi experiences annihilation in the Godhead, and Mulla Sadra deals with theodicy; the fourth stage, the journey with the Truth in creation, where he gives a full and systematic account of the development of the human soul, its origin, becoming and end, is where the Sufi experiences persistence in annihilation, absorbed in the beauty of oneness and the manifestations of multiplicity. Mulla Sadra had described his blinding spiritual realization of the primacy of existence as a kind of 'conversion': In the earlier days I used to be a passionate defender of the thesis that the quiddities are the primary constituents of reality and existence is conceptual, until my Lord gave me spiritual guidance and let me see His demonstration. All of a sudden my spiritual eyes were opened and I saw with utmost clarity that the truth was just the contrary of what the philosophers in general had held.... As a result [i now hold that] the existences (wujudat) are primary realities, while the quiddities are the 'permanent archetypes' (a'yan thabita) that have never smelt the fragrance of existence. (Asfar, vol. 1, introduction) Therefore it is not surprising that Mulla Sadra is greatly indebted to Ibn al-'Arabi in many aspects of his philosophy. Ibn Sina provides the ground on which his metaphilosophy is constructed and is, as it were, the lens through which he views Peripatetic philosophy. However, his work is also full of citations from the Presocratics (particularly Pythagoras), Plato, Aristotle, the Neoplatonists (see Neoplatonism in Islamic philosophy) and the Stoics (taken naturally from Arabic sources), and he also refers to the works of al-Farabi, and Abu'l Hasan al-'Amiri, who had prefigured Mulla Sadra's theory of the unity of intellect and intelligible. This philosophical heritage is then given shape through the illuminationism of al-Suhrawardi, whose universe of static grades of light he transformed into a dynamic unity by substituting the primacy of existence for the latter's primacy of quiddity. It is in this shaping that the influence of Ibn al-'Arabi, whom Mulla Sadra quotes and comments on in hundreds of instances, can be most keenly felt. Not only is that apparent in Mulla Sadra's total dismissal of any role for quiddity in the nature of reality, but in the importance which both he and Ibn al-'Arabi gave to the imaginal world ('alam al-mithal, 'alam al-khayal). In Ibn Sina's psychology, the imaginal faculty (al-quwwa al-khayaliyya) is the site for the manipulation of images abstracted from material objects and retained in the sensus communis. The imaginal world had first been formally proposed by al-Suhrawardi as an intermediate realm between that of material bodies and that of intellectual entities, which is independent of matter and thus survives the body after death. Ibn al-'Arabi had emphasized the creative aspects of this power to originate by mere volition imaginal forms which are every bit as real as, if not more real than, perceptibles but which subsist in no place. For Mulla Sadra, this world is a level of immaterial existence with which it is possible for the human soul (and indeed certain higher forms of the animal soul) to be in contact, although not all the images formed by the human soul are necessarily veridical and therefore part of the imaginal world. For Mulla Sadra, as also for Ibn al-'Arabi, the imaginal world is the key to understanding the nature of bodily resurrection and the afterlife, which exists as an immaterial world which is nevertheless real (perhaps one might say more real than the physical world), in which the body survives as an imaginal form after death. Philosophy has always had a tense relationship with theology in Islam, especially with the latter's discourse of faith (iman) and orthodoxy. In consequence, philosophy has often been seen, usually by non-philosophers, as a school with its own doctrines. This is despite the assertions of philosophers themselves that what they were engaged in was a practice without end (for, as Ibn Sina had declared that what is known to humankind is limited and could only possibly be fulfilled when the association of the soul with the body is severed through death), part of the discipline of which consisted in avoiding taqlid, an uncritical adherence to sects (see Islam, concept of philosophy in). It is the notable feature of Mulla Sadra's methodology that he constantly sought to transcend the particularities of any system - Platonic, Aristotelian, Neoplatonic, mystical or theological - by striving to create through his metaphilosophy an instrument with which the soundness of all philosophical arguments might be tested. It is a measure of his success that he has remained to the present day the most influential of the 'modern' philosophers in the Islamic world. http://www.muslimphilosophy.com/ip/rep/H027.htm http://www.majzooban.org/en/news-and-exclusive-content/1276-photos-the-historic-house-of-mulla-sadra-in-kahak-qom.html http://www.3nasl.com/contents/view/two-two-six-two-three.aspx
  4. Logic is the assessment of fallacy in thoughts concerning subjects. Then, who wants to be knowledgeable at the school of human thought, first of all should learn logic. Comprehend what Aristotle and other philosophers specified as a logic, after that enter in a scientific/philosophical issues. It is the false way produced by humans and it won’t work on religious topics. Because the source of each way is different from each other. The method of knowing/worshiping must be defined by God for it to be approved and accepted by him. Is it even possible that our creator would not guide us on how to know/worship him? He has sent prophets and ahlulbayt to teach us how to recognize facts. This all suggests that we can’t move as we please and by our false thoughts. We don’t need to learn philosophy or mysticism to understand the true way because it was not the way prophets taught. They have not come to be just for educated people. God has certainly defined the path. This path is engraved in knowing the chosen ones and to surrender to them. One that claims to be a worshipper of God but does not accept the path defined by Him is, in essence, denying God.
  5. What is Religion! We must know about religion, what it is, to develop to know our position to it. How can we practice Islam that is a religion-not any religion but religion to the whole creation beyond derby -, without knowing about what religion is. Sure all are good and excellent followers of Islam, but Islam is a religion so what is religion again! What specific thoughts occur in you, please let us know. If it is not cool to mention I, AGAIN I AM, than maybe we should use 'you'- hmm how logical is this sentence -. Our scholars say religion has three parts-or 3 whatever - that is: Ahklaq, Aqaed and fiqh- respectively Ethic-ethical morality, belief and jurisprudence-Islamic law -. If any religion misses one of these parts, that religion is defected, handicap,or either sick but can we say it is no religion! Why Islam is the last holy religion to humanity? You have probably confronted the above question in your life! In this topic following questions should be dealt with: What is religion? What is a defected religion? If we accept the concept of religion, than why should we accept Islamic religion and not any other Ibrahimic religion; what answer is needed here? Why Islam the final stage, what can we say about the development of religion because we read in the holy Quran, some Prophets Peace upon Them said that we are muslim! Hope this topic is successful Allah will, and this 'riter a excellent host to guests participating in this topic. Please leave your view and thoughts, this servant will be frugal in using posts to develop text in this regard.
  6. Salam 'Alaykum. Hi, guys. I was wondering if any of you have read Karen Armstrong's "The Case for God". I really admire Ms.Armstrong's work and think this book is a good defense of theism in the traditional sense. However, there are a couple of points I can't seem to agree with her on. For the sake of a productive discussion I'd like to limit this conversation to those who've read the book. She says that the physical world cannot tell us anything about God. While I don't have a problem with this per se, I do think this type of doctrine can become a problem. If this is the case, then how can we conclusively say that the good tings that happen to us in life are actually the product of God's mercy. How can someone cultivate an attitude of gratitude towards their creator if concrete reality can tell us nothing about Him. Problem number two arises when she gets to discussing the divinity of Christ. Throughout her book, she makes it clear that religious doctrines cannot be taken literally for that would be anthropomorphic. Ergo, Christian doctrine cannot be taken literally. She illustrates the teachings of Eastern mystics like Denys and the Cappadocians to show that this has generally been the educated Christian's stance. To paraphrase Ms.Armstrong: The trinity was not a rationale doctrine--that was the whole point behind it. By realizing the futility of reason to apprehend the Divine, we would enter a state of transcendence. But Allah(swt) clearly condemns the Trinity in the Holy Qur'an. Therefore, the logical conclusion that us Muslims must draw from this in relation to Armstrong's explanation is that the Trinity DID NOT lead to transcendence. The Qur'an condemns the Trinity on rational grounds, and yet Armstrong says that an irrational doctrine can lead to transcendence. It is quite clear that Armstrong's case is made very weak by the Qur'anic attack on the Trinity since it implies that reason must be present in the contemplation of any doctrine. What do you think? Are these points problematic for Karen Armstrong's polemic? Is there a way around it?
  7. Night 1; Br. Khalil Jaffer, Islamic Sermon Series; The Origin and the Return: GOD
  8. Assalamu Alaykum I've often heard that there are certain things about Islam that Muhammad, pbuh, taught to Ali, ra, alone. Is this true according to Shia and are there any book collections of the teachings he was given? Thanks. Nur
  9. (bismillah) The Mystic is the one who witnesses Allah in everything. Imam Husayn (A.S) says: O my Allah! Through the variety of Your signs (in the world of being) and the changes in states and conditions, I realized that the purpose is to make Yourself known to me in everything, so that I would not ignore You in anything. (The prayer of 'Arafah' in Mafatih al-Jinan) Imam Ali (A.S) says: I saw nothing except that I saw Allah before it, with it and after it. (Al-Asfar vol. 1, p.117, vol. 4, p.479)
  10. Does Mysticism(Irfan), deviant elements in Philosophy and Sufism have a place in Islam? Now one might ask and especially a Sunni would say what is the difference between the stuff being performed in this video and the Shia stuff done in Aushra? The answer is, they are completely different and are no were relevant to one another. The rituals performed in Ashura is generally grieving for Imam Hussien and reviving his message in order to please Allahسُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى. After all, as Allahسُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى mentioned in the Quran , crying and grieving to whom Allahسُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى adores is a type of worship and he set an example for that by showing how he was pleased with prophet Yaqoob(AS) when he used to weep and cry for Yusef(AS) for years until he eventually became blind. However, in regards regards to Suffism and specifically the types in this video, What they believe is basically that there are ways in which you can reach Allahسُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى other than through fasting, ziyarat, haj, praying and making dhikr but by other physical means or actions such as those performed in this video. Moreover, Allahسُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى did not set an example in the Quran that would reflect on these rituals they are performing as he did for Ashura nor any hadith said by the prophet or the infallibles would reflect on them as well. Does that not make these people specifically deviant? Now since I only have a general knowledge on Irfan and Sufism , I cannot immediately label them as deviant or declare takfeer on them. Moreover, I know for a fact that Sufism is broad and that there are other Sufis that reject these types of rituals and even declare takfeer on those that perform them. However, some of our major scholars have openly declared Sufism as a corrupt ideology and out of the fold of Islam. Scholars such as Ayatollah Sayed Sadiq al shirazi and those that reflect on his views. It is also worth mentioning and quote what our imams have said about Sufism in general. Here are a few hadiths below. “Our master Imam al-Askari (peace be upon him) has also been reported to have said to Abu Hashim al-Ja’fari: “O Abu Hashim! There will come a time where people’s faces are laughing and joyous [while] their hearts are dark and indeterminate. The Sunnah amongst them is innovation and the innovation is Sunnah. The believer amongst them is demeaned and the evil one venerated. Their rulers are oppressive and their scholars through the doors of darkness proceed.Their wealthy pillage the provision of their poor. Their young precede their old, and every ignorant to them is an authority, and every assignee to them is poor. They do not differentiate between the sincere and the doubtful, nor do they know the sheep from wolves. Their scholars are the most evil of God’s creation on the face of earth, because they incline towards Philosophy and Sufism. By Allah! They are of the enemies and people of distortion. They exaggerate in their love for our opponents and they misguide our Shi’a and Followers.” (Safinatul Bihar, By al-Muhadith al-Qummi, vol. 2, p. 58) "It has also been reported that Al-Hussain bin Abul Khattab said: “One day, I was with Abul Hassan al-Hadi (peace be upon him) in the mosque of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his pure family) when some of his companions, among whom was Abu Hashim al-Ja’fari, came to him. Abu Hashim was an eloquent man and had a high position near Imam al-Hadi (peace be upon him).While we were standing, a group of Sufis came into the mosque. They sat in a corner of the mosque and began saying ‘La Ilaha Illallah’ (i.e. there is no God but Allah). Imam al-Hadi (peace be upon him) turned towards his companions and said to them: ‘Do not pay attention to these deceivers for they are allies of the Devils and destroyers of the bases of religion." "It has been reported that our pure Infallibles (peace be upon them) condemned the one who adopts the philosophers and Sufi’s path. When Imam al-Sadiq (peace be upon him) was asked about Sufis, he answered: “they are our enemies, whoever is inclined towards them then he's one of them and will be resurrected with them. There will be people who claim they love us but they are inclined towards them and they try to be like them, call themselves with their name, and say what they say, whoever is inclined towards them he's not from us and we are innocent from him and whoever rejects them and refutes them he's like someone who performed Jihad against the disbelievers with the messenger of Allah (peace be upon him and his pure family)” (Safinatul Bihar, by al-Muhadith al-Qummi, vol. 2, p. 57)" By the way, the people seen in this video adhere themselves to Sunnism rather than Shiaism. It can be seen by the way they pray at the end of the video. That being all said, what are everyone's thoughts and opinions on this?
  11. A thousand untold stories Rest in my silence The soul raised to the heavens A body cast down on dust Listen to the whispers in the dark My sleepless dreams And a treasure of tears Thrown into the hidden Please come back Listen to the whispers in the dark Shadows of the heart Unfold frozen lips The cheek on soil Awaiting unseen feet Listen to the whispers in the dark I have become restless A ghost in the tavern Moaning to the moon From the depth of this dungeon Listen to the whispers in the dark Salute the burnt heart Dancing to chanting breaths Be the embodiment of madness Raise beyond the light Listen to the whispers in the dark
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