Tafakkur and tadthakkur – two techniques of Islamic spirituality

Raid Al - Daghistani

The present paper focuses on two important “initiatic techniques” of Islamic spirituality or Sufism: tafakkur and tadthakkur. Both concepts have multiple meanings. Tafakkur could be translated as “contemplation”, “spiritual reflection”, or “meditation” on God, whereas tadthakkur could be translated as “remembrance” of God, “recollection”, “evocation” or “invocation” (of His most beautiful Names).[1] These two essential spiritual methods of Sufism are also found on the list of so-called “spiritual stations” (maqāmāt), which a Muslim mystic (Sufi) must acquire on his inner spiritual ascent towards the ultimate Reality (al-aqq). This paper intends therefore to illuminate some of epistemological and ontological aspects of tafakkur and tadthakkur as well as to elaborate on their relationship in the overall structure of the Sufi “initiatic path” (arīqa).[2] However the present paper will neither delve into the etymology of the Arabic word for Sufism, taawwuf, nor will it follow its historical development. These topics are discussed in previous works of the author.[3]

Contemplation and invocation are deeply rooted in the Islamic tradition, supported by the Quran and hadith, the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad. The Quran refers to tadhakkur and tafakkur in many passages and invites believers to observe the universe, to examine their own souls, to reflect on creation and revelation, to be attentive, to be aware, to be mindful – to remember God. Let me point out some verses in this context:

O you who have believed, remember Allah with much remembrance.[4] [This is] a blessed Book which We have revealed to you, [O Muhammad], that they might reflect upon its verses and that those of understanding would be reminded.[5] So have they not traveled through the earth and have hearts by which to reason and ears by which to hear? For indeed, it is not eyes that are blinded, but blinded are the hearts which are within the breasts.[6] So remember Me; I will remember you. And be grateful to Me and do not deny Me.[7] Those who have believed and whose hearts are assured by the remembrance of Allah. Unquestionably, by the remembrance of Allah hearts are assured.[8] Thus do We explain in detail the signs for a people who give thought.[9] Indeed, in the alternation of the night and the day and [in] what Allah has created in the heavens and the earth are signs for a people who fear Allah.[10] And how many a sign within the heavens and earth do they pass over while they, therefrom, are turning away.[11] Indeed in that are signs for a people who reason.[12] He has certainly succeeded who purifies himself, and mentions the name of his Lord and prays.[13]

These are just some examples of how the Quran encourages Muslims to engage with tafakkur and tadhakkur on different levels. Both dimensions are also addressed by the Prophet Muhammad. The following two oft-quoted and much discussed “accounts” (sing. adīth) of the Prophet clearly demonstrate the importance of the cognitive and spiritual aspects of a human being, as well as the epistemic dimension of Islamic belief itself: “One hour (one moment) of meditation [or contemplation, at-tafakkur] is worth more than the good works accomplished by the two species of beings endowed with weight (men and jinns)”;[14] and “‘an hour of deep contemplation is better than seventy years of worship.”[15] There is also a tradition recounting how Muhammad once said to his Companions that the best and purest of their works in God’s eyes is remembering God the Most High![16]

Based on those and many others verses of the Quran, as well as of the prophetic tradition, the Muslim mystics (Sufis) developed their own understanding and practice of contemplation and invocation, and made them an indispensable part of their spiritual rites and efforts. Their intention was to improve religious consciousness and attain absolute self-realization – and thereby the mystical realization of the Ultimate Reality.

 

Contemplation (tafakkur)

Contemplation (fikr or tafakkur), together with invocation (dhikr or tadthakkur), constitutes the inner structure of epistemic ascent in Sufism, which represents a very complex spiritual process with the highest goal being the mystical realization of God (maʿrifa). Contemplation is the intellectual concentration of the absolute divine Reality and, at the same time, it is a testimony of the oneness of its existence.[17] In the act of contemplation the mystic intellectually confirms the fundamental truth of Islamic metaphysical teaching, that “there is no reality but divine Reality.”[18] The sublime object of contemplation is in the last instance Divine Reality itself, which exists necessarily and eternally, and is the ultimate source of all existence. Contemplation, which for the Sufis is usually accompanied by devoted invocation, is an essential aspect of the spiritual path (arīq), because “without fikr, dhikr would be largely inoperative; without dhikr, fikr would serve no purpose.”

A spiritual wayfarer considers the world as a manifestation, as “signs” (ayāt) of the Divine Reality: everything in the visible world becomes a symbol for the Unseen (al-ghayb). One’s observation of the wonders of the Universe and reflection on the mysteries (asrār) and beauties of life, accompanied by constant awareness (murāqaba) of the Divine presence finally leads to the certain knowledge (maʿrifa or ʿilm al-yaqīn) of God’s Infinity (ʾabadiyya), Majesty (jalāl) and Mercy (rama). This profound experience is the very backbone of the positive transformation that the meditator can accomplish in his inner spiritual journey. The recognition of Divine Benevolence, favor, and sublimity is not just a “royal road” to recognition of the Divine itself, which is the epistemic goal of mystical ascent. It is also the key to one`s personal, religious and existential improvement and good deeds, which is the ethical aim of the spiritual journey according to Sufism. In this sense the great Muslim theologian and mystic al-Ghazālī (d. 1111) says:

The way to a cognizance of God is to glorify Him in His creation, to contemplate His wonderful works, to understand the wisdom in His various inventions. […] It is the means to strengthen certainty and happiness, and in this course is seen the difference in the levels of the pious. […] The Almighty created the minds and perfected them with revelation, ordering men with such minds to think of His creatures, to contemplate and learn a lesson from what wonders He has entrusted in His creation.[19]

Malik Badri, a renowned Islamic scholar and professor of psychology, observes that the Sufi practice of contemplation along with the remembrance of the Almighty covers all cognitive, psychological, emotional, and spiritual aspects of the meditator, and therefore shapes his behavior and actions.[20] Contemplation is not merely a rational activity, but rather a mixture of cognition, meditation and imagination. Together with invocation, it “brings about the gradual realization in the self of the virtues of higher order such as repentance (tawbah), patience (sabr), gratitude (shukr), hope (rajā), fear (khawf), divine unity (tawḥīd), trust (tawakkul), and finnaly the highest virtue for the attainment of happiness in worldly life, love of God (maḥabbah).” Taffakur is therefore neither a purely mental process without any relation to emotional aspects, nor simply a state of wonder or even rapture without a link to cognitive dimensions, but rather an act of true spiritual realization that has a transformative power for the human being. In his Revival of the Religious Sciences (Iyāʾ ʿulūm ad-dīn) al-Ghazālī eloquently refers to the fact that knowledge, gained through contemplation, changes the heart of the contemplator:

When knowledge enters the heart, the state of heart changes. When this changes, the functions of the organs change. Functions follow the state of the heart, and this follows knowledge. And knowledge follows thought. Thought, then, is the beginning and key to all good. This will show you the virtue of contemplation, and that it supersedes remembrance, since the thought includes remembrance and more.[21]

There are however different kinds and stages of contemplation: from the stage of observing creation and wondering about its beauty and uniqueness, to the stage on which the contemplator relates his spiritual and aesthetic experience of creation with the almighty Creator Himself, and finally, to the stage which entirely transcends the boundaries between creation and the Creator. If the meditator reaches this level of contemplation, which Malik Badri calls the “stage of spiritual cognition”, then he realizes with absolute certainty that there is no reality save the Real One (al-aqq), no existence save the Necessary, Immutable, Everlasting, Eternal, Absolute and Self-Sufficient Existent (al-bāqiy, aamd), which is also the only ultimate Source of all visible and invisible (al-ʾawal, al-ʾair, al-wāid). For Sufis this stage is the true gnosis or knowledge of God (maʿrifatu-l-aqq/maʿrifatu-l-llāh), “the knowledge of who He is, of His nature and oneness as He has described Himself in Revelation, and this knowledge leads to comprehension of the proper relationship between the self and God.”     

For ʿAbdullāh al-Ansārī (d. 1086/88), a great mystic of Herat, contemplation (tafakkur) arises from the field of steadfastness (istiqāma), and is for the heart (qalb) what effort and striving is for the soul.[22] In psycho-spiritual theories of Sufism the heart (qalb) represents the “subtle divine substance” (laīfa rabbāniyya rūaniyya)[23] and the “seat of true knowledge” (maall al-ʿilm),[24] capable to grasp the “essence of things” (li-maʿrifati-aqāʾiq al-ʾumūr).[25] Al-Ansārī defines contemplation as “the arranging in order of what is known in order to discover and understand what is unknown.”[26] Contemplation is thus an epistemic-spiritual process, which enables a meditator to penetrate into deeper levels of reality. But while intellectual investigation of God’s innermost Attributes, as well as speculation about God’s rewards and punishments, are for al-Ansārī in fact “prohibited” (arām) – because from such activities suspicions about God could arise –, contemplation on the creation of God, His measured allotment, and His bounties is “highly recommended” (mustahab).[27] Al-Ansārīs’ view therewith corresponds to the following saying of the Prophet Muhammad: “Meditate not on the Essence but on the Qualities of God and on His Grace.”[28] But beyond this stage of contemplation, there is “mandatory contemplation” (wājib), which signifies the deep reflection on one’s own self in order to discover his or her own faults. This is supposed to strengthen one’s obedience to God, transforming bad qualities of one’s character and bringing about spiritual purity. “Mandatory contemplation” is thus closely linked to “spiritual introspection” or “examination of conscience” (muāsaba) and to “mindfulness” or “awareness (murāqaba) – another two fundamental techniques of Sufi spirituality.[29]

However, in the Arabic version of his work on spiritual station, al-Ansārī defines contemplation as “the search for insight aiming at setting right the objective.”[30] Here he undertakes a different distinction between three levels of contemplation.[31] The first is the contemplation of the essence of Oneness or Unification (ʿayn at-tawīd), which in its purest and authentic form is possible only in the mystical disclosure (al-kashf), i.e. transcendental, meta-rational realization of the realm of the Unseen, or in the immediate experience of mystical self-annihilation. The second level is the contemplation of the wonders of the Creation (laāiʾf ainaʿa), which is achieved through the recognition and appreciation of principles of the Creator on the one hand, and through deliverance from the enslavement of passions on the other hand. The third is the contemplation of the meaning of the deeds and inner spiritual states (maʿānī al-aʿmāl wa-l-awāl). This kind of contemplation, which involves introspection and mindfulness, can be gained particularly through the occupation with the science of Sufism and through knowing the position of others.  

There are however not only different types and degrees of contemplation, but also different factors and conditions, which define its quality and intensity. Malik Badri differentiates between “at least nine dimensions and variables that seem to interrelate in the formation of these differences.”[32]  These are: (1) depth of faith, (2) depth and length of concentration, (3) emotional and mental state of the contemplator, (4) environmental factors, (5) influence of culture, (6) believers’ knowledge of the subjects of contemplation, (7) good example and influence of companionship, (8) nature of the objects of contemplation, and (9) familiarity of the objects of contemplation. 

Although all mentioned conditions and factors affect the very nature of contemplation to some degree and thereby the nature of the contemplator itself, there is an activity that helps transform the state of mind, creating the higher consciousness more than any other, namely dhikr or tadthakkur – the invocation of God.

 

Invocation (tadthakkur)

By virtue of the Quranic appeal on a believer to “remember God oft”,[33] Sufis developed the practice of invocation (dhikr/tadthakkur) of the Divine Name (asmāʾ al-llāh). Since man cannot concentrate directly on the Infinite, the meditative concentration on the symbol of the Divine helps him reach the Infinite itself.[34] For Sufis, invocation is an indispensable companion of contemplation, which in the best case can help to penetrate metaphysical truths, but cannot guarantee the attainment of ultimate tranquility of the heart. Reflection or contemplation does not bring about calmness, while invocation “has compensations which give joy”.[35] For only in the remembrance of God the hearts find peace.[36] Ash-Shādhilī (d. 1258), a great North-African Saint and founder of the Shadhili Sufi order, recognizes the connection between deep invocation and harmonized ataraxia of the heart on the one hand, and meta-rational realization on the other hand: “The real devotional recitation (dhikr) has to do with what is tranquilized, that is, the heart, and what is revealed in the spiritual realities of the clouds of illumination, on the clouds of the Lord.”[37] Fulfillment of the heart and metaphysical penetration into the realm of spiritual realities can be considered as two effects of true, devoted remembrance of the Divine. According to al-Ansārī, the difference between contemplation and invocation is therefore that the first one is “seeking”, while the latter one is “finding.”[38] For al-Ansārī the field of invocation emerged from the field of contemplation, because remembrance (taakkur) brings to mind what one has already received and accepted.[39] Both activities are however undoubtedly the pillars of religious awareness with profound noetic qualities and therewith the “inner rhythms” of Sufi self-realization.  

A further characteristic of tadthakkur is that its ontological dimension is inseparable from its epistemic dimension; for through the process of repetitive recitation of the Divine Name as the symbol of the ultimate Being, a meditator is approaching the realization of the ultimate Being itself, and thereby the primordial Ground of their own Soul. This realization is not rational or speculative, but meta-rational and existential. The organ of such activity is not the mind (ʿaql), but the subtle heart (qalb). According to a divine saying (adīth qudsī), nothing but the heart of a true believer can embrace the Absolute, the Divine: “The heavens and the earth cannot contain Me, but the heart of my believing servant does contain Me.”[40]

Titus Burckhardt (d. 1984), one of the most remarkable twentieth century experts on Sufism, explains the metaphysical relationship between the epistemic and ontological aspect of dhikr as following: “In invocation the ontological character of the ritual act is very directly expressed: here the simple enunciation of the Divine Name, analogous to the primordial and limitless ‘enunciation’ of Being, is the symbol of a state or an undifferentiated knowledge superior to mere rational ‘knowing’.”[41] Tadthakkur as a way of enunciating the Divine Name gradually establishes the state (āl) of mystical perception (mushāhada or mukāshafa), which is superior to theoretical rational knowledge. The aim of this profound Sufi practice is thus to transcend mental activity mentation and enter a completely different realm of experience, namely a pure spiritual experience (taaqquq), which at its final stage results in the mystical annihilation of individual consciousness into the Divine Consciousness (fanāʾ). A very eloquent description of the process of such an experience is delivered again by Burckhardt:

When the individual subject is identified with the Name to the point where every mental projection has been absorbed by the form of the Name, the Divine Essence of the Name manifest spontaneously, for this sacred form leads to nothing outside itself; it has no positive relationship except with its Essence and finally its limits are dissolved in that Essence. Thus union with the Divine name becomes Union with God (al-waṣl) Himself.[42] 

What is described here is in fact the ultimate stage and the final goal of mystical ascent on the Sufi “Ladder of Perfection” (scala perfectionis): the “annihilation in God” (fanāʾ fi-l-llāh) and subsequently the “subsistence through God” (baqāʾ bi-l-llāh). The fanāʾbaqāʾ experience can be therefore considered as the Sufi version of apotheosis, whereby “Divine become his [believer`s] ears to hear, and his eyes to see and his hands to grasp, and his feet to walk.”[43] The highest level of spiritual self-realization in Sufism manifests therefore as an active self-denial, in which the Divine will “replace” the ego. It is a matter of the condition which belongs to the true Gnostics (al-ʿārifūn), to the “beloved of God” (muibbūn) or “friends of God” (al-awliyāʾ), the condition beyond fear, sorrow and grieve: “Unquestionably, [for] the allies of Allah there will be no fear concerning them, nor will they grieve.”[44]

For al-Kalābāḏī (d. ca. 990) – the author of the famous Sufi manual, Kitāb at-taʿarruf –, the “real invocation” (aqīqa a-dhikr) means absolute awareness of the True One, which requires an emptying of one’s consciousness of everything else.[45] But although tafakkur is ranked lower as tadhakkur in the overall structure of Sufi spiritual psychology and mystical epistemology, in a way, invocation presupposes contemplation. Thus al-Junayd (d. 910), a great mystic of Baghdad, states that if man mentions God without first reflecting on His reality and experiencing contemplation, man is simply a liar.[46]  This means that invocation is authentic only if it is based upon contemplation. In this context another Sufi mystic says: “The heart is for contemplation, the tongue for making expression of the contemplation: if a man gives expression without having contemplated, he is a false witness.”[47]

In general, the Sufi mystics distinguish between different types or levels of invocation. Al-Ansārī differentiates three kinds of remembrance: (1) remembrance through fear of what is hidden and for the unseen outcome, (2) remembrance through hope in respect to “sincere repentance, caring intercession, and luminous mercy,” and (3) remembrance through supplication and neediness in respect to one’s familiarity with pre-eternal divine grace. At this level, the believer gazes upon their Lord with an open heart.[48] So awe, hope and rogation are for al-Ansārī three fundamental elements of Sufis’ invocation.

In his famous manual The Doctrines of the Sufis al-Kalābāḏī also divides tadhakkur into three categories. The first is invocation of the Divine in the heart, meaning that the Divine had previously been forgotten, and then recalled and remembered; the second is the invocation of the attributes of the Divine which are now present in one’s mind and heart; and the third is the invocation that turns into pure mystical vision (shuhūd/mushāhada) of the Divine Reality.[49] The three types of invocation mentioned by al-Kalābāḏī are therefore: (1) invocation of the heart, (2) invocation of the qualities of the Divine, and (3) transcendental invocation, which causes one’s ego to disappear through invocation.[50] Against the background of this categorization it has become clear that there are not just quantitative differences of invocation, but also qualitative differences.     

Al-Qushayrī (d. 1074), the author of the renowned Epistle on Sufism, distinguishes two types of remembrance, mainly the remembrance of the tongue (dhikr al-lisān) and the remembrance of the heart (dhikr al-qalb), whereby “the continual remembrance of the tongue eventually brings the servant to the remembrance of the heart,” or where the true effect lies.[51] But perfection in the personal state of a spiritual wayfarer is achieved only if they are able to perform invocation with both their tongue and their heart.[52] Religious invocation is for al-Qushayrī also a means with which the spiritual seeker fights against their afflictions and impulses of the carnal soul.[53] Thus the remembrance of God as a process of increasing one’s awareness of the Divine is for the believer a way to overcome their own desires, passions and negative emotions and to transcend the ordinary state of negligence and forgetfulness (of spiritual and divine Reality). The Sufis therefore often rank invocation higher than contemplation. One of the greatest Sufi masters and the author of the important work on the “Sufi way of Chivalry” (Kitāb al-Futuwwah), ʿAbd al-Raḥman al-Sulamī (d. 1021), declares: “In my view, remembrance is more perfect than contemplation, for God – praise be to Him – attributed remembrance to Himself, while He never did the same for contemplation. And anything that is attributed to God – praise be to Him – is always better than that which is attributed to His creatures.”[54] The famous early ascetic and gnostic from Basra, al-Ḥasan al-Baṣrī (d. 728), said:“Seek pleasure in three things: the [ritual] prayer, the remembrance of God’s name, and in the recitation of the Quran. If you find pleasure in these, fine. If not, then know that the door is shut.”[55] In short: the invocation as “repetitive recitation of sacred formulas or sacred speech, whether it be aloud or inward”[56] is the very foundation of the Sufi path, “for one can only reach God by constantly remembering His name.”[57]

 

Conclusion

In light of the above findings it is evident that tafakkur and tadhakkur are two complementary methods of Islamic spirituality and two fundamental components of its epistemology. Contemplation and invocation are not just two among many spiritual stations (maqāmāt) that a Sufi wayfarer must gain on their “initiatic” path, but also the existential and epistemic constants, which accompany their inner journey through different stages and states. However, as a meditative invocation of Godʼs names and mindful contemplation of Godʼs manifestations and attributes, tafakkur and tadhakkur are not exclusively features of Sufi practice but also a religious duty for all Muslims who strive for spiritual purification (tazkiyyatu-nafs) and realization (maʿrifa), for certainty of faith (al-ʼimān al-yaqīn) and the knowledge of the hidden (ʿilm al-bāin). Or as al-Ḥasan al-Baṣrī put it: “Men of knowledge have been resorting to thought with the remembrance of God, and to the remembrance of God with thought, imploring the hearts to speak until the hearts responded with wisdom.”[58]

 


[1] “And to Allah belong the best names, so invoke Him by them.” (Glorious Qur’an 7:180, http://quran.com/7/180)

[2] Cf. Geoffroy, Éric, Le Soufisme, Fayard 2003, p. 21–22.

[3] See: Al-Daghistani, Raid, Epistemologija Srca: Kontemplacija – Okušanje – Raz-sebljanje; in: Mistika in Misel (ed. Sebastjan Vörös), Koper 2013, p. 119–154; see also: Al-Daghistani, R., Rešitelj iz Zablode, Kud Logos, Ljubljana 2014, p. 53.

[4] Quran 33:41 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[5] Quran 38:92 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[6] Quran 22:46 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[7] Quran 2:152 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[8] Quran 13:28 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[9] Quran 10:24 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[10] Quran 10:6 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[11] Quran 12:105 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[12] Quran 13:4 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[13] Quran 87:14,15 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[14] Quoted from: Burckhardt, Titus, Introduction to Sufi Doctrine, World Wisdom, 2008, p. 95.

[15] Although the authenticity of this Prophetic account may be questionable, the fact, that it has been widespread transmit, confirms the importance of contemplation in the Islamic tradition. It is also reported Ibn ʿAbbās said:“One hour of contemplation is better than a whole night of vigil worship,” while other authorities taught that, “one hour of contemplation is better than a whole year of worship” (Quoted from: Badri, Malik, Introduction; in: Badri, M., Contemplation. An Islamic Psychospiritual Study, London 2000, p. xi.)

[16] See: al-Qushayri, Abu ʾl-Qasim, Al-Qushayriʾs Epistle on Sufism, Garnet 2007, p. 232.

[17] Cf. Hafizović, Rešid, Temeljni Tokovi Sufizma, Bemust, Sarajevo 1999, p. 239–240.

[18] The shahāda or the witnessing “that, there is no god but God” (lā ʾilāha ʾillā-llāh), reflects the essence of Islamic monotheism, i.e. declaration of belief in the oneness or union of God (tawīd).

[19] Al-Ghazālī, Abū Ḥāmid, Al-ikmah fī malūqāt Allāh; zitiert nach: Malik, Contemplation. An Islamic Psychospiritual Study, London 2000, p. 27.

[20] Cf. Badri, Contemplation, 2000, p. 29.

[21] Al-Ghazālī, Abū Ḥāmid, Iyāʾ ʿulūm ad-dīn, Vol 4; zitiert nach: Badri, Contemplation, 2000, p. 28.

[22] Cf. al-Ansārī , ʿAbdullāh, Stations of The Sufi Path, Archetype, 2010, p. 95.

[23] Cf. al-Ghazālī, The Marvels of the Heart, Fons Vitae 2010, p. 6.

[24] Cf. al-Ghazālī, The Marvels of the Heart, 2010, p. 35.

[25] Cf. al-Ghazālī, Iyāʾ ʿulūm ad-dīn, Vol. 2, Beirut 1998, p. 21–22; al-Ghazālī, The Marvels of The Heart, p. 39.

[26] Al-Ansārī , Stations of The Sufi Path, 2010, p. 95.

[27] Cf. al-Ansārī , Stations of The Sufi Path, 2010, p. 95.

[28] Quoted from: Burckhardt, Titus, Introduction to Sufi Doctrine, World Wisdom, 2008, p. 95.

[29] For more see: Al-Daghistani, R., Murāqaba in Muāsaba: Duhovni Tehniki Sufizma; in: Čuječnost: Tradicija in Sodobni Pristopi (ed. Anja Zalta & Tamara Ditrich), Koper 2016, p. 209–224.

[30] Al-Ansārī , ʿAbdullāh, Stations of the Wayfarers, Dar Albouraq, Paris 2011, p. 52.

[31] Cf. al-Ansārī, Stations of the Wayfarers, 2011, p. 52–54.

[32] Badri, Contemplation, 2000, p. 78–87.

[33] Quran 33:41 (http://quran.com/3/191).

[34] Cf. Burckhardt, Introduction to Sufi Doctrine, 2008, p. 90.

[35]Al-Kalabadhi, Abu Bakr, The Doctrine of the Sufis, 1989, p. 96; Kitāb at-Taʿrruf li-madhhab ʾahl at-taawwuf, Beirut 2001, p. 74. 

[36] “Those who have believed and whose hearts are assured by the remembrance of Allah. Unquestionably, by the remembrance of Allah hearts are assured” (Quran 13:28 (http://quran.com/3/191)).

[37] Al-Shadhili, The Mystical Teachings of al-Shadhili, New York 1993, p. 166.

[38] Cf. al-Ansārī, Stations of the Wayfarers, 2011, p. 54.

[39] Cf. al-Ansārī, Stations of The Sufi Path, 2010, p. 96.

[40] Quoted from: Burckhardt, Introduction to Sufi Doctrine, 2008, p. 86.

[41] Burckhardt, Introduction to Sufi Doctrine, 2008, p. 90.

[42] Ibid.

[43] Bukhari, Hadith Qudsi.

[44] Quran 10:62 (http://quran.com/87/14-15).

[45] Cf. al-Kalabadhi, The Doctrine of the Sufis, 1989, p. 95

[46] Cf. al-Kalabadhi, The Doctrine of the Sufis, 1989, p. 97.

[47] Al-Kalabadhi, The Doctrine of the Sufis, 1989, p. 97.

[48] Al-Ansārī, Stations of The Sufi Path, 2010, p. 96.

[49] Cf. al-Kalabadhi, The Doctrine of the Sufis, 1989, p. 98.

[50] Ibid.

[51] Al-Qushayri, Abu ʾl-Qasim, Al-Qushayriʾs Epistle on Sufism, Garnet 2007, p. 232.

[52] Cf. al-Qushayri, Al-Qushayriʾs Epistle on Sufism, 2007, p. 232.

[53] Ibid, p. 233.

[54] Al-Qushayri, Al-Qushayriʾs Epistle on Sufism, 2007, p. 234.

[55] Al-Qushayri,, Al-Qushayriʾs Epistle on Sufism, 2007, p. 234.

[56] Burckhardt, Introduction to Sufi Doctrine, 2008, p. 90.

[57] Al-Qushayri, Al-Qushayriʾs Epistle on Sufism, 2007, p. 232.

[58] Ibn al-Qazzim, Miftā; quoted from: Badri, Contemplation, 2000, p. 31.