Tuesday, July 13, 2010


"Whoever has no Master, has Satan as his Master."

Sufism has been part of the corporeal body of Islam for most of its history. The term sufi is known from at least the eighth century C.E.; it is from the word for wool (suf), a symbol of purity by the wearer of such a garment. The suf indicated also that there was an obvious degree of spiritual proximity to God. It is a representation of the ideal mode of worship towards God, with the whole of the heart, mind and body. Sufism is practiced throughout Islamic history as a way to access the divine love, wisdom and knowledge of the Creator which are the basis of mysticism. Sufism then has nothing to do with what authors of the book, Sufism: Love and Wisdom by Jean-Louis Michon, Roger Gaetani call, "the sectarian movements which mostly in the Western world, have used its name, fame, and even some psycho-spiritual practices to attract a naive clientele with the promise of quick spiritual advances."

"The Doctrine of Unity," writes the authors is central to Islamic revelation; 'unity is expressed by the testimony of Faith." Also accompanying the Doctrine of Unity are the concepts of the Universal Man, Mohammad the Prophet and Envoy. All who strive to imitate his virtues, and perfect intellect, pray so as to recover ones' own "pristine nature." Then there is the "Way of Recollection" without consideration or acknowledgment of human free will, places man in a garden, "naturally submitting to the Creator, and thus celebrating His praise..." What is generally known as "The Book of God," the Quran guides the believer to the paths of salvation through the sacred traditions bestowed upon every human community in history.

Finally the Sufis say,"whoever has no Master, has Satan as his Master..." Those who dare to travel to God by their own means are doomed to fail in the Islamic mind. Islam teaches that the "rebellion against God takes place on the level of the psyche, not on that of the body. The flesh is only an instrument for the tendencies originating within the psyche." So then it is the mind and spirit which must be lifted up and trained so as to go the way of truth. These are a few of the topics considered in this book of essays by various authors.

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