The organs of God: Hadīth al-nawāfil in classical islamic mysticism

Michael Ebstein*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

This article focuses on hadīth al-nawāfil (“the tradition concerning supererogatory works”), which is one of the most quoted traditions in Islamic mystical literature The tradition describes how the believer may draw close to God and gain His love by performing supererogatory works, to such an extent that her organs become divine. The article discusses the significance of the nawāfil tradition in variou mystical writings composed in the formative and classical periods of Islamic mysti cism (third–seventh/ninth–thirteenth centuries), with special attention given to the writings of the influential mystic Muhyī l-Dīn Ibn al-'Arabī (d. 638/1240). The article likewise attempts to demonstrate the relevance of certain Shii conception to the understanding of hadīth al-nawāfil and its interpretations in Sunni mysticism.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)271-289
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of the American Oriental Society
Volume138
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 American Oriental Society. All rights reserved.

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