By Kristin Zahra Sands
Meeting the ever expanding curiosity in Islam and Sufism, this publication is the 1st entire learn of Sufi Qur’anic commentaries and contains translations of many writings formerly unavailable in English. It examines the shared hermeneutical assumptions of Sufi writers and the variety fashionable of Sufi commentaries. many of the assumptions analyzed are:
* the Qur’an is a multi-layered and ambiguous textual content open to unending interpretation
* the information of deeper meanings of the Qur’an is possible by way of skill except transmitted interpretations and rational proposal
* the self is dynamic, relocating via states and stations which bring about assorted interpretations at assorted occasions.
The types of Sufi commentaries are explored, which variety from philosophical musings to well known preaching to literary narrative and poetry. different commentaries from the classical interval also are investigated to supply context in knowing Sufi techniques and exegetical kinds.
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Extra info for Sufi Commentaries on the Qur'an in Classical Islam
The first is not to aspire to fully know the meaning of these verses. The second is to accept that interpretation is unavoidable because reason does not lie. 25 The best recourse is to say, I know that its literal meaning is not what is intended, because it contains what is contrary to reason. What exactly is intended, however, I do not know, nor do I have a need to know, since it is not related to any action, and there is no way truly to uncover [its meaning] with certainty. Moreover, I do not believe in making judgements by guessing .
And the uplifted roof – the sensory and suprasensory faculties in the head. And the burning sea, that is nature kindled with the ruling fire that necessitates movement. 40 METHODS OF INTERPRETATION Surely thy Lord’s chastisement is about to fall. In other words, something from which the animal self, the command spirit, and the high intellect take refuge but which derives from the self’s nurturing Master, who makes its affair wholesome, is about to fall and come down upon it. For the self possesses the low waystations absolutely in respect to its possibility and relatively in respect to its nature.
Ibn 2Arabi develops this idea further in his writings by comparing the rational and imaginative faculties in man. Ibn 2Arabi and the method of allusion (ishara) Unlike al-Ghazali, Ibn 2Arabi rejects rational interpretation (ta1wil 2aqli) outright. 17 Man has two faculties by which he obtains knowledge of God. The faculty of reason (2aql) in man works by means of reflection ( fikr), using the language of abstraction. It is capable of knowing God’s incomparability, how He is utterly different from His creation.