HOME BLOG QURANIC HADITH FIQH tGFH English Lang. CONTACT hamburger menubar icon

Sh. Muhyiddin Ibn al-ʿArabī

And the Unfolding of the Islamic Intellectual Tradition

As Interpreted By

Professor William C. Chittick

Edited and Slides by OmarKN

Tweet #omarkn


Slides 01 - 31

31 Perfection Demands Realizing the Real in the Full Expanse

In another account of the ascent to God, Ibn al-ʿArab tells the story in the first person. Here he suggests with a bit more clarity that achieving perfection demands realizing the Real in the full expanse of His self-disclosure within one’s very wujūd, one’s existence/ finding. After spending a few pages describing the stages of his own climb in Muhammad’s footsteps, he concludes with these words:

In this journey I gained the meanings of all the divine names. I saw that they all go back to One Named Object, One Entity. That Named Object was what I was witnessing, and that Entity was my own wujūd. So, my journey had been only in myself. I have provided no indications of anything but myself.[23]

This last sentence can stand for the entire contents of The Meccan Openings, Ibn al-ʿArab’s grand catalogue of the doorways to the Real: ‘I have provided no indications of anything but myself.’

The self in question is the human essence, created in the image of God and receptive to every name taught by the Divine Teacher. Recognizing this self to whatever extent one is able to do so brings forth intimations[24] of the life of the heart. Such recognition will never be found by blindly imitating jurists and theologians, not to speak of the thinkers and dreamers of our own times. It will only come by patient knocking at the door.


Original Title: The Doorway to an Intellectual Tradition, William C. Chittick, [pdf]

next page >


Slides List

01 What Is the Intellectual Tradition?
02 The Final Goal of All Islamic Learning
03 Muhyil-Dīn ibn al-ʿArabī's Living Legacy
04 Statement of tawhīd - No True Reality but the Reality of the Real
05 Passing Beyond Illusory Life & Joining With Real Life
06 The Heart Is the Center of Human Life and Consciousness
07 Achieving The Hearts Life With God: maʿrifa
08 The Distinction Between ʿilm and maʿrifa
09 Knowledge That Comes Inside = maʿrifa = an Unmediated Knowing
10a Knowledge From the Outside: naqlī / ʿaqlī, Intellectual
10b Knowing - - Recognizing
10c Transmitted Knowledge / Intellectual Knowledge
11a Religion Is Based on Transmitted Knowledge
11b In Terms of Being Based on Transmitted Knowledge
12 Metaphysics - Its Subject Matter: The Real
13 Ibn al-ʿArabī's Overall Worldview Rooted in the Real Being
14 The Islamic Worldview: Descent Sustainance Reintegration
15 The Entire Cosmos: the Breath of the All-Merciful
16 The Ascent Back to the One - Human Beings
17a Any Worldview Depends on Transmitted Knowledge
17b Relative, Perspectival Truth in the Context of Absolute Reality
18 Taqlīd - Following the Authority of a Mujtahid
19 The Mindful Acknowledgement of tawhīd
20 Discover the Reality of Things Within Yourself!
21 Discovering the Truth in the Heart: tahqīq, realization
22 Sh. Muhyiddin Ibn al-ʿArabī: muhaqqiq, realizer Of the Truth
23 Translation of ʿaql – Intelligence or Intellect – as Reason - No!
24 Wujūd
25 Ibn al-ʿArabī's Critique of the Philosophers
26a Climbing the Ladder – the miʿrāj – of Inner Realization
26b The Multifarious Dimensions of the Muhammadan Station
27a The Importance of the Prophets as the Source of Guidance for Realization
27b The Ultimate Goal: The Perfect Human Being
28 Seeing the Real With Vision of Transcendence and Immanence
29a On Recognizing the Alchemy of Felicity
29b Seeing With Both Eyes – Intellect and Illumined Imagination
29c Encountering the Spiritual Realities of the Prophets
30 True Insight Into the World of Nondelimited Imagination
31 Perfection Demands Realizing the Real in the Full Expanse

Recognition is intelligence finding the truth and reality of things within itself.
…and it is also the very existence of the mind and heart.
A quote from the presentation

Related texts
link-inMuhyiddīn Ibn ʿArabi, Presentation of 30 Texts

[23] Futht III:350.30; cited in Chittick, Ibn ʿArabi: Heir, p. 25:

”It was from here that I came to know that I am a sheer servant…”

[24] Indications, signs, signals


* Living Islam – Islamic Tradition *