Sufism

Sufism and Modernity by Eiden Pospisil

Sufism and Modernity by Eiden Pospisil

While much of modern dialogue revolving around Islam focuses on violence and inter-religious conflict,  focusing on the universal and mystical nature of Sufism is critical to the healing process.  Much of the Mid-east is involved in conflict regarding interpretation of the Quran, the individual internal approach of Sufi practice is key to ending conflict and(…)

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Sufism and Modernity by perry rubin

Sufism and Modernity by perry rubin

Although the nineteenth century was dominated by a surge of secularism, evolutionism and profane material culture proliferating thought in the public sphere Sufi theology has consistently endured these various sociopolitical climates because of the immutability of the core values addressed and adaptable nature of practice. Through islam one is about to address fundamental elements of(…)

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James Fleming (RELG 373) Mysticism is Essential to Modern Life

James Fleming (RELG 373) Mysticism is Essential to Modern Life

In the contemporary age, Sufism and the paradigms of mysticism are just as relevant as they have ever been. One of the areas this is most apparent is in religious plurality. At the foundation of mysticism is the realization that all religious paths strive for and achieve the same goals on the mystical path. However,(…)

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Andrew Seligson: Eschatology in the Qur’an

Andrew Seligson: Eschatology in the Qur’an

Qur’anic eschatology is defined by few key factors. The first component is the importance of remembrance of the Day of Judgment. The second component which is also linked to remembrance is the idea of resurrection and being held accountable for one’s choices and actions in this life due to the scales. The third component is(…)

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Historical and Social Causes of the Mystical Approach

Historical and Social Causes of the Mystical Approach

  Different external and internal factors can catalyze a realization or shift in thinking that has lead many to take a mystical approach to religion. This phenomenon can occur on a personal and societal level. Famous figures and saints have found mysticism because of unique divine encounters but large scale conversions can often be seen(…)

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Role Model’s and Mentors in Muslim mystical world view

Role Model’s and Mentors in Muslim mystical world view

An important part of the Muslim mystical world view is to have a rich understanding of the historical background and progression of practices with a particular emphasis on understanding the life of those figureheads who best exemplified Sufi ideals. The Quran insists on the importance of studying roll models, chiefly The Prophet Muhammad, in pursuing(…)

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James Fleming (RELG 373) Foundational Concepts of a Sufi Worldview

James Fleming (RELG 373) Foundational Concepts of a Sufi Worldview

As Sufism is not an organized religion with a central authority the idea of finding foundational concepts is a difficult task, to say in the least. For example, figures such as Ibn al-Arabi are revered by many as introducing practice and concepts that many would consider essential to the foundation of a ‘Sufi Worldview’. However,(…)

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Andrew Seligson: The Concept of Kufr and Salih in Muslim Practice

Andrew Seligson: The Concept of Kufr and Salih in Muslim Practice

The words Kufr and Salih point towards the notion of idea-actions. As we have discussed in class, intention plays a crucial role in Islamic theology. The “idea” or “intent” behind an action is almost as important as the action and its consequences: “Morality in Islam had its origin in religion and developed exclusively within its(…)

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Mohit Dubey: The Role of The Role Model in Sufism

Mohit Dubey: The Role of The Role Model in Sufism

The relationship between mentor and student and the idea of a necessary “role model” have been present in Islam since it’s foundation and have had a profound impact on Sufi beliefs and institutions. Beginning with the Prophet’s mentorship of those close to him (“the People of the Bench”, ahl al suffa), the teacher-student relationship has(…)

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Katie Ryan-O’Flaherty: The Importance of the Role Model in the Sufi Tradition

Katie Ryan-O’Flaherty: The Importance of the Role Model in the Sufi Tradition

Role models and connection are important in many traditions. In taoism for example, the practitioner relies on the master for secret knowledge that will give them access to immortality. While in Buddhism, there was a whole branch of the tradition (called zen) traced back to a single moment in which the Buddha shared a facet(…)

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James Fleming (RELG 373): Necessity of the Role Model

James Fleming (RELG 373): Necessity of the Role Model

The role of a mentor is essential for the Sufi worldview, for as discussed in class, in this view God is the “first lover” and the most intimate of beings. Therefore transmission of knowledge and practice must be done through contact with another intimate being, just as God revealed the Qur’an to the Prophet in(…)

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Micah Vriezelaar: Liminality and the Cosmos of the Qur’an

Micah Vriezelaar: Liminality and the Cosmos of the Qur’an

Through the knowledge that the Qur’an imparts, humans have a continued sense of the intensity by which God has created and curated the world. The very existence of the Qur’an and the knowledge that Muhammad existed as the Prophet and guide to humanity serves, within one statement, to show that humanity’s own flawed existence is(…)

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Mysticism in Poetry: James Fleming

Mysticism in Poetry: James Fleming

My favorite poems in this selection of Sufi mystics were the Tales from Sa’di because of their ability to encompass many important themes of Sufi beliefs, such as the effort of nothingness in attempt to be a mirror of God’s creation, the importance of wisdom and knowledge, the de-emphasis of materialism, and attempting to understand(…)

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Jesse Miller: Sufi Role Models and The Quest for Unity

Jesse Miller: Sufi Role Models and The Quest for Unity

Sufis seek to succeed in completing a specific narrative throughout the span of their existence in order to reach The Real or The Center, the intangible embodiment of divine truth. This journey originates in the pure, unified love of God’s creation, then passes through the human realm of logical distinction and terminates in an annihilation(…)

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