From Rumi's whirling dervishes in Turkey over 700 years ago, to circles of silent mystics in the West today, this book reveals the history and practices of Sufism, the ancient but still active system of Islamic mysticism which has long been the spiritual current in Islam that counterbalances fundamentalism. Eric Geoffroy is an authority on Sufism, and he shows us this increasingly popular contemplative dimension of Islam, which is little understood in the West.
In this ideal introduction to Sufi wisdom, Shah illustrates how traditional Sufi concepts can resolve our social, psychological, and spiritual problems, drawing on classic texts, the Eastem parables of Jesus, and encounters with contemporary teachers, students, and journalists.
The great thirteenth-century Sufi mystic and poet Jalaluddin Rumi began his life as an orthodox Islamic believer but felt that to fully experience complete union with the divine he must abandon institutionalized religion and its prescribed forms of worship. Surrendering his will to his overriding urge for a much more immediate, intuitive, and compelling union with the divine, he found that by manipulating certain behavioral aspects of his physiology--eating lightly, breathing deeply, moving freely, and gazing raptly--he was capable of loosening the rigid confines of the self, thereby overriding its limitations and achieving a transcendent merging with his own divinity.
In 1244 AD, Jallaludin Rumi met a wandering seeker named Shams-i-Tabriz. The two men immediately went into private retreat together, emerging 90 days later totally transformed. Drawing on Rumis poetry and prose, Will Johnson reveals what brought this about.
When it first appeared in 1964, The Sufis was welcomed as the decisive work on the subject of Sufi Thought. Rich in scope, author Idries Shah explained clearly the traditions and philosophy of the Sufis to a Western audience for the first time. In the five decades since its release, the book has been translated into more than two dozen languages, and has found a wide readership in both East and West. Containing detailed information on the major Sufi thinkers, and literary characters, such as Nasrudin, it is regarded as a key work on both Sufism and Eastern Philosophy. A text in scores of leading universities around the world for courses on Sufism, Eastern thought and Islamic philosophy, The Sufis has been used by psychologists and physicists, by school teachers, lawyers, social workers, and by ordinary members of the public.
This comprehensive introduction to the mystical traditions that arose in the Islamic world includes discussions of the sacred sources of Sufism in the Qurían and the traditions of the Prophet Muhammad.
Why do more than one billion people claim Islam as their religion? American convert John Ahmed Herlihy provides his personal answer and takes readers on a journey to the heart of Islam, the fastest growing religion in the world. Weaving details of Islam's central beliefs and practices-its Five Pillars-with intimate autobiographical details of his more than thirty years in the religion, Herlihy presents readers with an insightful glimpse into a religion that remains so often misunderstood.
In this fascinating study the author explores the idea that unlike medieval Christian art, in which the polarization of such forms and patterns was relegated to a background against which to set sacred images, the geometrical patterns of Islamic art can reveal the intrinsic cosmological laws affecting all creation. Their primary function is to guide the mind from the mundane world of appearances toward its underlying reality.