Friday, March 5, 2010

A Jewel of Divine Wisdom

Fusus al-Hikam (The Seals of Wisdom) by Shaikh-ul-Akbar Muhyuddin ibn Arabi (Murcia 1164 - 1240). Translated by Maulana Abdul Qadeer Siddiqui.


The first chapter of the Fusus al-hikam (The Bezels of Wisdom) is entitled 'The Wisdom of Divinity in the Word of Adam'.

It begins with the assertion that the Real created the cosmos as an all-inclusive object in which he could contemplate the entities of his names, but that until he created Adam and breathed his spirit into him, the cosmos remained like an unpolished mirror.


Here Ibn al-'Arabi's idea seems to be that the cosmos as a whole - the totality of existent entities - manifests all the divine names but does so in a diffuse way, whereas man, as a microcosm endowed with consciousness, brings them into sharp focus as a unity.


Here Ibn al-'Arabi's idea seems to be that the cosmos as a whole - the totality of existent entities - manifests all the divine names but does so in a diffuse way, whereas man, as a microcosm endowed with consciousness, brings them into sharp focus as a unity.



Potentially every man is a microcosm, but in practice men differ in their polishing of the cosmic mirror, with only a select few realizing their primordial nature. These are the prophets and saints, all of whom belong to the category of 'the perfect man' (al-insan al-kamil). They alone assume the character traits of God, which are latent in all human beings, and manifest them in perfect equilibrium.


Muhammad is the 'perfect man' par excellence. Basing his argument on the hadith (sayings of the Prophet), 'I was a prophet when Adam was between water and clay', Ibn al-'Arabi propounds the view that as 'the Muhammadan reality' (al-haqiqa al-Muhammadiyya), Muhammad is identical with 'the first intellect' (al-'aql al-awwal), the eternal principle unifying the immutable entities. All the other prophets, beginning with Adam, only became prophets during their historical mission; each was the bearer of a fragment of this Muhammadan reality in a particular place and time, a bezel in which a jewel of the divine wisdom was displayed. None the less, after their mission the prophets continued to exert an influence through the saints who were their spiritual heirs.


Courtesy:

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1 comment:

太可怕 said...

真正的友誼,有如健康失去時,始知其價值........................................