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Lecture 22

HIST 296 Lecture Notes - Lecture 22: Theosophy, Monism, Sunnah

Course Code
HIST 296
Adnan Husain

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HIST 296 W11L2
Wednesday, November 25th 2015
Mystical Theosophy: Ibn al-Arabi
Andalusian mystic celebrated in Seljuk lands, “The Greatest
Master” (1165-1240), tomb in Damascus
Doctrines: Unity of Being (pantheistic monism – he was arguing
some inherent relationship between some sort of relationship
between being of creator and rest of world, because he created,
arguing infusion of divine spirit within earthly plane ), Human as
microcosm/mirror/theomorphic being (microchasm of
macrochism, human beings themselves share qualities of divine
attributes, spirit anyway, created in such away that everyone
has divine attribute that their nature is most closely associated
with, argued and suggested that particular nature of beings was
that they could become a complete person who uni7ed within
spiritual being all 99 attributes of God) Insan al-Kamil: perfected
or complete person, integrating divine attributes
oSynthesisis of philosophy, theology, Islamic religious
sciences: debating al-Ghazali; familiar with Shi’I
esotericism (about imams, about cycle of prophecies, well
versed in traditional Islamic sciences)
oAllegory and imaginal nature of reality, continuous
creation: Qur’an literally true, world is allegory (inverts
term of relationship, world is actually imaginal, constantly
being created and recreated by God)
o“I was a hidden treasure and wanted to be known” –
Hadith about God’s worth
oStudied theology, Kalam, and philosophy.
oHabit of his thought marks all engagement with diverse
traditions: always inverts them completely, counter
intuitive way.
Continuing (communication) Revelatory Experience: Dream-
vision, Miracles – not just private
oThe Meccan Revelations (visions – happened during his
ritual to Haq, when he was near the black stone, had
number of visions, were walls of gold and silver made of
bricks, and hole in one in gold wall, saw himself being
placed into it), Bezels of Wisdom (given in a dream –
prologue, says didn’t write text, had vision and angel
Gabriel came with book and gave it to him and when woke
up it was written, idea that spirutal xperience reproduces a
continued revelatory experience with god that could be
shared, some people had what Prophet received, revealed
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