The Place of Tasawwuf in Traditional Islam

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Register Here Login Helpdesk Donate Academy Answers Library Bookstore Blog eCampus Home » Library » Articles » The Place of Tasawwuf in Traditional Islam The Place of Tasawwuf in Traditional Islam The Place of Tasawwuf in Traditional Islam © Nuh Ha Mim Keller Perhaps the biggest challenge in learning Islam correctly today is the scarcity of traditional 'ulama. In this meaning, Bukhari relates the sahih , rigorously authenticated hadith that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, "Truly, Allah does not remove Sacred Knowedge by taking it out of servants, but rather by taking back the souls of Islamic scholars [in death], until, when He has not left a single scholar, the people take the ignorant as leaders, who are asked for and who give Islamic legal opinion without knowledge, misguided and misguiding" ( Fath al-Bari , 1.194, hadith 100). The process described by the hadith is not yet completed, but has certainly begun, and in our times, the lack of traditional scholars-whether in Islamic law, in hadith, in tafsir 'Koranic exegesis'-has given rise to an understanding of the religion that is far from scholarly, and sometimes far from the truth. For example, in the course of my own studies in Islamic law, my first impression from orientalist and Muslim-reformer literature, was that the Imams of the madhhab s or 'schools of jurisprudence' had brought a set of rules from completely outside the Islamic tradition and somehow imposed them upon the Muslims. But when I sat with traditional scholars in the Middle East and asked them about the details, I came away with a different point of view, having learned the bases for deriving the law from the Koran and sunna. And similarly with Tasawwuf -which is the word I will use tonight for the English Sufism , since our context is traditional Islam-quite a different picture emerged from talking with scholars of Tasawwuf than what I had been exposed to in the West. My talk tonight, In Sha' Allah, will present knowledge taken from the Koran and sahih hadith, and from actual teachers of Tasawwuf in Syria and Jordan, in view of the need for all of us
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to get beyond clichés, the need for factual information from Islamic sources, the need to answer such questions as: Where did Tasawwuf come from? What role does it play in the din or religion of Islam? and most importantly, What is the command of Allah about it? As for the origin of the term Tasawwuf, like many other Islamic discliplines, its name was not known to the first generation of Muslims. The historian Ibn Khaldun notes in his Muqaddima : This knowledge is a branch of the sciences of Sacred Law that originated within the Umma. From the first, the way of such people had also been considered the path of truth and guidance by the early Muslim community and its notables, of the Companions of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), those who were taught by them, and those who came after them. It basically consists of dedication to worship, total dedication to Allah Most High, disregard for the finery
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This note was uploaded on 10/03/2010 for the course CSE 1234 taught by Professor Cho during the Spring '10 term at Bangladesh University of Eng and Tech.

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The Place of Tasawwuf in Traditional Islam - Register Here...

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