teacher and student


Concerning Muhammad ʿAbduh

Someone wrote of Muhammad ʿAbduh:

He was regarded as a leading purist sunni as opposed to those sufis who used to control the lower uneducated class.

Purist? Muhammad ʿAbduh gave a fatwa which caused furor among the purist Sunnis, permitting the donning of fedoras and top hats by Muslims.

During my last visits to Egypt I got the impression that moslem brotherhood, jamaa islamiya and what the hostile West brands : "fundamentalists" all are anti-sufi and pro Mohammad Abdu.

Muhammad ʿAbduh in the very beginning of Tafsir al-Manar (1:18) calls the Sufi Shaykh Muhyi al-Din ibn ʿArabi: "al-Shaykh al-Akbar" (the greatest Shaykh).

It seems the labels purist and anti-sufi seem just as slipshod as fundamentalist.

GF Haddad


see also:

•   What is Sufism?




latest update: Thu, 12 Feb 2009
* living ISLAM – Islamic Tradition *