In her book Sufi Commentaries on the Qur’an in Classical Islam, Kristin Zahra Sands concisely presents the major themes, styles, authors, and issues related to both Sufi and non-Sufi Qur’anic commentaries. She begins her analysis by acknowledging the ambitious endeavor of those academics who have written extensively on the subject before her, adding that she sees the goal of this book to be a further elucidation and examination of these accomplished studies. Since Sufism’s nascent days, the examinations of the Qur’an and reliance on its knowledge have been relevant to Sufi communities and authors, a claim often disputed by classical Europeans Orientalists such as Ignaz Goldziher. In this piece, Sands introduces the relationship between …show more content…
Although the final section of this part relates to the polemical arguments proposed by non-Sufi exegetes such as Ibn al-Jawzi and Ibn Taymiyya and al-Ghazali’s apologetics for Sufi methods and interpretations, throughout all the discussions prior, she carefully introduces non-Sufi perspectives in order to emphasize contrast and difference between traditional tafsir and Sufi commentaries.
In the second half the book, the author focuses on Quranic commentaries regarding select Quranic verses that are relevant to Sufi identity and exegesis. After briefly mentioning the biographical background of some Sufi commentators, she explores the story of Musa and al-Khidr in Surah 18:60-82, the stories regarding the mother of Maryam, Maryam, and Zakariyya primarily in Surah 3 although references are scattered throughout the Qur’an of Maryam, and lastly the Light Verse in Surah 24:35. It is important to note that the author really accentuates the didactic and preachy nature of many of these Sufi commentaries, a theme not typically found in tafsir. Regarding the story of Musa and al-Khidr, Sufi commentaries debate who can and how can people acquire the divine knowledge that al-Khidr exhibits so
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The Sunni Creed of Adud al-Din-Iji and the Zaydi creed of Imam al-Mutawakkil have some major fundamental differences, as you may expect since both come from opposite spectrums of Islam; but, after careful analysis, one may be surprised to find that both creeds hold a fair amount of similarities. In this essay, I plan to compare and contrast the Sunni creed and Zayid creed by showing you evidence of the significant similarities and differences in these two short texts. Even though one branch may have something that the other may not have, one can still see that both creeds of Islam provide the instructions and general beliefs of how a Muslim must act, how God is the most powerful. The biggest
Aisha bint Abu Bakr was a leader, a woman, a wife, a theologian, a scholar and a political activist. She was precocious, loyal, brave and remarkably intelligent. These aspects of her humble life have allowed her to make a powerful impact on the development and expression of Islam that “no woman [has] reached”. Not only did she influence the position of women in Islamic society, Islamic ethics, and the understanding and interpretation of the Qur’an, but she also modelled these qualities for the men, women and children of Islam.
There are few different branches of Islam but the two most prominent branches are Sharia law and Sufism. Sharia law and Sufism both seem to contradict each other. Sharia laws are the Qur’anic rules for the tangible world. The law includes predetermined punishment and rewards for actions, clearly defined by the Qur’an. It also has a spectrum of the lawfulness of actions, ranging from required to forbidden. Sufism, however, takes a more mystical approach to the practice of Islam. Sufism focuses on rejecting the material world and becoming one with God through self-annihilation. Despite the difference, I argue Sharia law and Sufism can be reconciled because although one person cannot practice both at the same time, but both versions of Islam
Chraibi’s book Muhammad: A Novel is a fantastic, powerful read because it is just that: a novel. It is a fictional story, but written by an author who had an unusual, mystical calling himself to write the book. By using original aspects from the traditional biographies of Muhammad and then adding his own personal, esoteric twist on these characteristics, Chraibi creates a work of literature that is truly compelling and shows Muhammad’s journey to becoming a prophet in a mystical light. Two central distinctions, namely Muhammad’s relations with Khadija and Bahira, add the spice in this novel that really help the reader grasp what is mystical about both this literature and most importantly, Muhammad himself.
This book was written by the famous Egyptian Islamist named Sayyid Qutb. He was the known of Muslim world for his work on what he believed to be the social and political role of Islam in modern times. He was known by many as one of the founding fathers of the modern Islamist movements. Amazingly, this book was the last writing that he wrote while in the prison in the year of 1964. Furthermore, he also the writer for another famous book Fi -zilal al-qur'an (In the shade of the Qur'an).
Mevlana Jalal al- Din Rumi is one of the most influential Islamic mystics of all times. It is no surprise that even seven hundred years after his death; he remains to be the best selling poet in North America. His poetry reflects the teachings of Islam and his opinions on various matters such as faith, prayer, love, free will etc. are assembled in a book called “The signs of the Unseen”. Occasionally, commentators dissociate Rumi poetry’s from Islam but the fact is that Rumi’s entire writings are inspired from the Quran and sayings of Prophet (PBUH) and represent the essence of Islam.
The book that we have chosen to review is titled “Lost History, the Enduring Legacy of Muslim Scientists, Thinkers and Artists”. The author of the book is Michael Hamilton Morgan. The book was published in the year 2007 and also holds the same copyright date. The book is a non-fiction. The main subject matter of the book is the history of the Islamic civilization from the birth of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)
The source A History of Medieval Islam was written by John Joseph Saunders in 1965. John Joseph (J.J.) Saunders was a British Historian who was especially knowledgeable of Medieval Islamic. J.J. Saunders taught at the
The book provides an avid engagement with a brilliant Muslim who loves truth more than tradition and comfort. Qureshi provides a window into his notion of the conviction of belief through his childhood, his family’s zeal for Islam, the depths of his search to disprove Christianity, and the people who introduced him to the reliability of Christianity. In the last page of his book, Qureshi notes that his first year in the Christian faith was “unimaginable difficult, without a doubt the most painful period of my life” (287). He then goes on to say that it was also the most powerful part of his life, that his suffering was what transformed him. “My life now is truly blissful, far more wondrous than I could have ever imagined when I was a Muslim.”
Although Ibn Sina wrote his own exegetical piece about the Mi’raj, explaining it within his own philosophical worldview, the Sufi’s still used the Mi’raj to justify their own experiences and knowledge. When al-Ghazali was discussing the need for prophecy, an action philosophers surely debated and refuted, -al-Ghazali defends Prophecy and Sufism though precisely the imagery and social imagination of the Mi’raj. Al-Ghazali states in Deliverance from Error, “And just as one able only to discern, if presented with the things perceptible to the prophetic power and considered them wildly improbably. That is the very essence of ignorance! For such a man has no supporting reason except that it is a stage he himself has not attained and for him it does not exist: so he supposes that it does not exist in itself” (60). Furthermore, al-Tirmidhi performs the same apologetic within his piece as well, dismissing reason as the most powerful and necessary analytical device to understanding the world and God, for “The states of this Unitarian cannot be understood by reason (nazar) or logic (qiyas), for God has favored him in all his states with a power from Himself which cannot be perceived either by faculties of reason (‘uqul) or by the senses (hawass)” (al-Tirmidhi 47). He attempts to relay to his readers that the Intellect of the heart should not be confused with the intellect of the rationalists, who are deluded from the other states of truth that contradict with their own intellect. The rationalists’ arrogance is on display and is refuted because of the potential of the Mi’raj, for the individual ascends through the divine realms, accumulating new information and new perspectives of reality that are hidden from the masses or those who have yet to attain
The lives of Muhammad by Kecia Ali is a modern book that describes the way the life of the prophet has been told by past authors. It looks at the manner in which he lived his life and some of the decisions that he made. However, many other authors who have written about the life of Prophet Muhammad but Kecia Ali bring out the unspoken perspective that many people hardly notice. She shies away from describing the truth spoken by anti-Muslims and Muslims alike. On the contrary, she analyses both factions of the narrations and tells the story of Muhammad in a new light.
hapter three of Malise Ruthven’s book, Islam: A Very Short Introduction, is dedicated to the subject of divine unicity and the fact that, although it is a very important belief in Islam, the Muslim world is characterised by disunity. The word tawhid means unicity, and there is an “insistence that it is unicity above all that defines divinity,” which is not directly mentioned in the Quran, but is implied. The idea can be traced back to 657, when Mu‘āwiya’s soldiers placed pages of the Quran on their lances, symbolizing that they are also Muslims like ‘Alī’s supporters, calling upon this sacred unicity to reach arbitration. Throughout the history of Islam, similarly to Christianity, there have been countless breaks and divisions, ultimately leading
As Sufism had become more and more public to the masses, many Sufis themselves became nervous of the degradation of their spiritual discipline and its embodiment by charlatans posing as Sufis. In the introduction of his Epistle on Sufism, al-Qushayri presents these developments as the reason why preservation of previous Sufi figures and a codification of the states and stations became necessary. He wrote, “Know...that the majority of those true Sufis have become extinct and, in our age, nothing is left of them but their traces...This [Sufi] path has been overcome by weakness, nay the path has in fact completely disappeared” (al-Qushayri 2). Furthermore, one of the groups that appeared to be appropriating and corrupting Sufism was the antinomians and libertines. In his critique, The Idiocy of Antinomians, Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (d. 505/1111) blasted the “false Sufis,” who claim to be Sufis but completely disregarded Islamic law, for “they freely
The essay shall explore the concept of the jahiliyyah and demonstrate the importance and impact it has to understand the origins and development of Islam. The Jahiliyyah is a core and critical part of the foundations of Islam, that certain elements of the jahiliyyah were borrowed, adopted and developed; whilst other elements were discarded as Islam evolved. It is important as aspects of the jahiliyyah period continues to have an influence after the advent of Islam. Elements of the jahiliyyah such as the geographical location; the political, social and religious life; pre-islamic literature, rituals of the Ka 'ba and the role of Women have shaped the understanding of Islam.
Due to its ability to harbor some notable rhyme, it hardly appears as plain prose. Concurrently, the Quran lacks the appropriate meters to categorize it as a piece of poetry. It firmly appears as an ascertained approach that was popularly referred to as Saj in pre-Islamic Arabia, although it was an epoch of heated discussions among scholars (Mir). Although the contents, language, and method of the Quran, as well as the social and legal implications emanating from the same, have been examined since ancient duration, new advances have typically been proposed to investigate the book in the light of the mentioned approaches.