Introduction to Sufi Doctrine
EPUB EBook by Titus Burckhardt
EBook DescriptionThe language of symbolism predominates in Burckhardt's treatise on Sufism, and the style of his writing shows the mutual influence of the friendship he had with Frithjof Schuon, another notable traditionalist and Sufi. Introduction to Sufi Doctrine EPUB EBookBurckhardt's symbolism leans heavily on the influence of the conflict of opposites in spiritual progression and awareness.Perhaps this could be said to be a central theme of all esoteric spirituality.
"If the imagination can be a cause of illusion by binding the intelligence to the level of sensory forms it none the less also has a spiritually positive aspect in so far as it fixes intellectual intuitions or inspirations in the form of symbols" (85).
Opposites in this context don't necessarily have to be as polarized as good/evil.They can also represent different dimensions of intelligence, those dimensions that could be said to be a progressive goal of the Sufi path.A prime example of Burckhardt's is on the exoteric/esoteric interpretation of the Qur'an, where in this case the opposites will never contradict themselves on the highest level, as they both are manifestations of universal truth.The Sufis will say that all opposites are relative in the sense that they are only actualized in this lower world of forms.At the higher level, nothing is outside of God, and opposites are reconciled in the divine Essence.Burckhardt refers to the Qur'an as a "concrete symbol...a single succinct form [which] includes meanings indefinite in their variety" (35).The universal nature of the Qur'an and Islam demands levels of understanding suited for all humanity.
The timing of this book once again seems to have been from divine grace as it has served as a perfect summation of all I've been learning to this point.However, without having read prior works on Islam and Sufism, there are certainly numerous instances of terminology and symbolism that would have been difficult to digest.I'd recommend a book like Martin Lings What is Sufism? as a true introduction to the nature of Sufism as it depends less heavily on prior knowledge of concepts while maintaining a challenging and unique perspective for the reader.
Like this book? Read online this: Opposites, Sufi City.
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