Download al-Qushayri’s Epistle on Sufism: al-Risala al-Qushayriyya fi by Abu 'l-Qasim Al-Qushayri, Alexander Knysh PDF

By Abu 'l-Qasim Al-Qushayri, Alexander Knysh

Translated by means of Alexander D. Knysh

The writer of the Epistle on Sufism, Abu'l-Qasim al-Qushayri (376-465 H / 986-1074 CE), used to be a well-known Sunni Shafi'i Ash'ari pupil and mystic (Sufi) from Khurasan in Iran. His Epistle is likely one of the preferred Sufi handbook ever. Written in 437 H / 1045 CE, it has served as a first-rate textbook for plenty of generations of Sufi beginners right down to the current. al-Qushayri has given us an illuminating perception into the standard lives of Sufi devotees of the 8th to 11th centuries CE and the ethical and moral dilemmas they have been dealing with in attempting to strike a fragile stability among their ascetic and mystical convictions and the exigencies of existence in a society ruled via rank, wealth, and army strength. In al-Qushayri's narrative, the Sufi 'friends of God' (awliya') are depicted because the precise, if uncrowned, 'kings' of this global, no longer these worldly rulers who seem to be lording it over the typical herd of believers. but, even the main complex Sufi masters aren't take salvation without any consideration. Miracle-working, regardless of how miraculous, can't warrantly the Sufi a 'favorite consequence' within the afterlife, for it can be yet a ruse at the a part of God who desires to try the ethical integrity of his servant. within the Epistle, those and lots of different Sufi motifs are illustrated via the anecdotes and parables that convey al-Qushayri's fellow Sufis in a wide selection of contexts: being affected by starvation and thirst within the wilderness, whereas appearing pilgrimage to Makkah, engaging in 'spiritual auditions', reciting the Qur'an, waging battle opposed to the 'infidel' enemy and their very own wishes, incomes their livelihood, meditating in a retreat, praying, operating miracles, interacting with the 'people of the market-place', their relations and friends, dreaming, and demise.

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Sa∏id said: Ibn Abi al-Dunya related to us that a certain man said that this famous story [is indeed] about Bishr. ”//45 Abu ∏Abdallah al-Harith al-Muhasibi76 He was unique in his age in regard to [religious] knowledge, pious scrupulosity, acts of devotion and mystical states. He came from Basra and died in Baghdad in 67 A famous Sufi of Egypt; on him see pages 19–20. 68 ∏Ibara, a clear, unambiguous expression or speech – as opposed to ishara, a mystical allusion, which is often ambiguous in order to conceal its true meaning from the uninitiated.

He said: Muhammad b. al-Husayn Ibn al-Khashshab said: Abu al-Hasan ∏Ali b. Muhammad al-Misri said: Abu Sa∏id al-Kharraz said: Ibrahim b. Bashshar said: “I was accompanying Ibrahim b. Adham. ”//32 Ibrahim b. Adham was particularly famous for his pious scrupulosity. ” Someone said to Ibrahim b. ” He then recited the following verse: When something becomes too expensive for me, I abandon it. Therefore the more expensive it becomes, the cheaper it is [for me]. 8 On him, see IM, pp. 18–20. 9 Presently in northern Afghanistan.

80 A famous Sufi of Shiraz, who died in 371/982; on him see IM, “Index”, under “Ibn Khafif”. 81 Of the Divine Law. 82 That is, one that was improperly obtained. ABU πL-QASIM AL-QUSHAYRI 29 would. I gave him a piece of dry bread that we happened to have. ’ ” Abu Sulayman Dawud b. Nusayr al-Taπi He was a person of great importance. ] Matar told me: Muhammad b. Musayyib told me: Ibn Khubayq told me: Yusuf b. ” I heard our master Abu ∏Ali al-Daqqaq – may God have mercy on him – say: “The cause of Dawud’s conversion to asceticism was as follows.

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