Path of God's Bondsmen: From Origin to Return

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9781889999333: Path of God's Bondsmen: From Origin to Return
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As unusally comprehensive survey of the main concerns of Sufism, The Path of God's Bondsmen from Origin to Return is a summation of the Sufi tradition as it had developed by the seventh/thirteenth century. It first discussed the theoretical bases of Sufism, showing in conclusive detail their grounding in the Qur'an and the exemplary model of the Prophet Muhammad. It then turns to an examination of man's inner morphology -- the soul, the heart, and the spirit -- the means of advancement on the Sufi path, and the suprasensory phenomena that accompany spiritual progress. The work concludes with a section on the wayfaring of different classes, valuable for the light it sheds on the structure of classical Perso-Muslim society.

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About the Author:

The author, Najm al-Din Razi (d. 654/1256), was an initiate of the Kubravi order. Fleeing from the Mongol invasion of Iran, he sought refuge in Anatolia, and it was there, is about 620/1223, that he completed this, his materpiece. Written in an elegant Persian, the work enjoyed great popularity wherever the Persian language has been cultivated -- Turkey, India, and Central Asia, as well as Iran. The existence of Turkish and Chinese translations also testifies to its broad influence.

The translator, Hamid Algar, is Progessor of Persian and Islamic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He has published widely on both Sufism and Shi'ism.

Review:

"Algar's translation, as is to be expected, reads very well and relfects the spirit of the original very faithfully. --Annemarie Schimmel, International Journal of Middle East Stdies XV (1983), pp 584-585

"We welcome this long-awaited book with gratitude; it will remain one of the basic works on Sufism in English --Annemarie Schimmel, International Journal of Middle East Studies, XV (1983) pp. 584-585

"Whoever seeks to understand Islamic esoterism owes a debt of gratitude to Algar." --Richard Gramlich, Die Welt des Islams, XXII (1982)

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