The aim of this paper is to focus attention on the role of the mutashabbih within the active life of ribat in sixth/twelfth and early seventh/thirteenth century Sufism of late Abbasid Baghdad with its basic source being Abu Hafs al-Suhrawardi's 'Awarif al-Ma'arif. Other concepts and groups are also analyzed such as qalandariyya, majdhubs, takalluf, which is the semblance of ecstasy during sama', and the ambiguous status of khadim. The broad category khadim, according to al-Suhrawardi, seems to have included types of affiliation and function in Sufi collective life that went beyond the specific position of the khadim as a senior disciple of a particular Sheikh. The infinitive form khid-ma would probably have implied categories ranging from a transitory affiliation motivated by some expenditure on the Sufis, through a more robust one in which the same title might designate those who occasionally visited resident Sufis and participated in one or more of their rituals, and on to actual residence of such servants in the ribat. Al-Suhrawardi's tashabbuh theory is based on the essential purpose of creating a popular Sufi system open to one and all, with an inherent dynamic that leads ultimately to the rank of Sheik-hood (mashya-kha).
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cultural Studies
- Literature and Literary Theory