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Introduction to Sufism
This, the first book in English from an authority on Sufism, Éric Geoffroy, introduces Sufism from many angles and from its origins up to the present day. Geoffroy sees Sufism as a unique lens through which we can view the spirituality that lies behind the forms of Islam. Having its source in the Koran and in the prophetic Tradition, Sufism’s goal is to deliver practitioners from the negative human passions, and the illusions, that beset them. This book covers the history of Sufism from its earliest days up until our own times, touching on the many significant people, practices, ideas, and controversies that have shaped it. It also highlights Sufism’s universal aspects, which are a powerful antidote to various fundamentalisms. Geoffroy’s special treatment of the subject balances the voices of long ago (e.g. Ibn ‘Arabī, Rūmī, Hallāj, and Ghazzālī) with many contemporary voices to cover a remarkable scope of topics essential to a full understanding of authentic Sufism. The work concludes with the prospects for contemporary Sufism and with its increasing role in the West.
Transliteration System for Arabic Characters
CHAPTER I: Fundamentals
DEFINITIONS ANO OBJECTIVES
Knowledge and Love
Who is the Sufi?
A Reality without a Name
The Science of Spiritual States
The Initiatory Path
Goals of the Sufi
• Purifying the Soul
• Knowing God
• Union with God, or "Extinguishing Oneself" in Him?
• Dying to Oneself, and Living Again Through Him
DIVERSITY IN SUFISM
A Rich Pallet of Spiritual Types
SUFISM AND SHI'ISM
Two Rival Esoterisms
THE ROLE OF THE FEMININE IN SUFISM
The Eternal Feminine in Islamic Mysticism
The Effects of the Male Ambience
SOME PREJUDICES REGARDING SUFISM
Sufism is a Kind of Quietism, and is the Egotistical Search for Individual Salvation
Sufism is a Popular Religion, Conceived as a Reaction to the Legalism of "Orthodox" Islam
CHAPTER 2: Sufism and Islam
TWO NAMES FOR A SINGLE REALITY
The Fundamentally Koranic Character of Sufism
THE KORANIC MODEL
"To Combine One 's Flesh and Blood with the Koran"
The Sufi Travels His Path Through the Book
A Multitude of Meanings: Sufi Exegesis
The Hadīth Qudsī, or "Divine Utterance"
THE MODEL OF MUHAMMAD
"Sufis are Those Who Follow the Path of the Messenger of God and Strive to Acquire His Noble Virtues"
The Prophet as Primordial Light
The Reality of Muhammad, Mediator between the Divine and Human Realms
The Inner Sunna
Sufism and Prophetic Tradition (Hadīth)
The Master of Masters
Devotion to the Prophet
THE ISLAM OF "EXCELLENCE"
Islam, Īmān, Ihsān
Sufism Illuminates the Five Pillars
Sufism, or Plenary Islam
THE LAW (SHARĪ'A), THE WAY (TARIQA), AND THE REALITY (HAQIQA)
A Law for Sufis Only?
The Science of "Unveiling", the Science of Sharīa
A Living Law
CHAPTER 3: Sufism in Islamic Culture: Historical Perspective
THE PATH OF THE PIONEERS
A Foundational Attitude: The Ascetic Renunciation of the World
The "Path of Blame" (Malāma): From Concealment to Provocation
From Asceticism to Mysticism
Bistāmī, the Archetype of "Intoxication"
The Baghdad "School" of Sufism (Ninth- Tenth Centuries)
Hakim Tirmidhī: Between Prophecy and Sainthood
Successors of Junayd and Hallaj
The Four Founders of the Legal Schools and Sufism
THE CENTURIES OF MATURATION (Tenth- Twelfth Centuries)
Legal Scholars, Traditionnists, Sufis: Assertion of Identities
Radiance from Khurasan (Tenth-Eleventh Centuries)
• Sufism and Shafi' ism
• Manuals of Sufism
Ghazzali: The Supremacy of Spiritual Intuition over Reason
The Persistence of the Mysticism of "Intoxication"
POETRY AND METAPHYSICS
Iranian Mystical Poetry (Twelfth-Fifteenth Centuries): 'Attār, Rūmī, and Others Rūmī: Music and Dance
Turkish Mystical Poetry: Yunus Emre
Arabic Mysticai Poetry: Ibn 'Arabī and Ibn al-Fārid
The Necessity of Interpreting Mystical Poetry
Ibn 'Arabī and the Metaphysics of Being
Ibn Sab'īn, or Oneness Without Compromise
CREATING A STRUCTURE FOR SUFISM (Twelfth-Fifteenth Centuries)
The Formation of the "Initiatory Paths" (Tarīqa)
• Central Asia and Iran
• Muslim Spain and the Maghreb
• Egypt and Syria
• The Caucasus
INTEGRATION AND EXPANSION: "SUFISM, THE HEART OF ISLAM"
Recognition of Sufism by the Ulama
Sufism is Prominent as the Spirituality of Sunni Islam
Hanbalism and Sufism
Places of Sufi Social Interactions
The "Cult of Saints"
The Esoteric Governance of the World
SUFISM AND REFORMISM (Eighteenth-Twentieth Centuries)
A Decline of Sufism?
The Search for Original Purity (Eighteenth-Nineteenth Centuries): Sufism and Wahhabism
The Muhammadian Path
Renewed Paths and New Paths
Lesser Jihād and Greater Jihād
• The Sudanese Mahdi
• Emir 'Abd al-Qādir
Sufi Reformism at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century: Amadou Bamba and the Shaykh al-'Alawi
Sufism: A Fertile Ground for "Salafī" Reformism
Sufism and Islamicism in the Twentieth Century: Politicization
"Sufi Scholars" in Contemporary Times
CHAPTER 4: Sufism As It Is Lived
MASTER AND DISCIPLE
A Necessary Relationship
An Excessive Veneration?
A Reciprocal Code of Conduct A Single Master
A Second Birth
Sufi Psychology, or the "Science of the Soul" Succession and Delegation of Authority
METHODS AND RITES OF AFFILIATION
• The "Investiture of the Cloak" (Khirqa)
• "Making the Pact" ('Ahd, Bay' a)
• "The Secret Teaching of Formulas of Invocation" (Talqīn)
From True Aspirant to Simple Associate A Fluid World: Multiple Affiliations
CODES OF CONDUCT
Correct Inner Attitudes
• Travel Between Brothers
A Rule for Community Life
INITIATORY METHODS The Invocation (Dhikr)
• The Highest Form of Worship
• Formulas of the Invocation
• From the Dhikr of the Tongue to that of "Inner Consciousness"
The Invocation of the Tongue (Dhikr al-Lisān)
The Invocation of the Heart (Dhikr al-Qalb)
The Invocation of the Inner Consciousness (Dhikr al-Sirr)
• Aloud, or in Silence?
• Group Sessions of Dhikr
SPIRITUAL POETRY AND MUSIC: SAMĀ'
The Echo of the Divine Word
• Subtlety and Ambiguity of Samā'
• A Joyful and Widespread Practice Litanies and Prayers
The Retreat (Khalwa)
• Rules of the Retreat
• Not to Stop at Supernatural Phenomena
• The "Retreat in the Midst of the Crowd"
CHAPTER 5: Sufism and Interreligious Openness
Religious Pluralism in Islam
The Transcendent Unity of Religions
The Legacy of Prophetic Pluralism
The "Hidden Idolatry" of Common Believers
The Temptation of Syncretism
The Pressures of Exoterism and History
CONCLUSION: Sufism Yesterday, Sufism Today The "Degeneration of Time"
The Illness of "Brotherhoodism"
Adapting to Cyclical Conditions
Towards a Restructuring of the Roles of Sufism
The Messianic Adventure
Sufism in the West
Glossary and Index of Technical Terms
Index of Proper Names
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