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Al Junayd of Baghdad: The saint hath no fear

Al Junayd of Baghdad: The saint hath no fear
   
Photo: Zeybeks were irregular militia and guerrilla fighters living in the Aegean Region of the Ottoman Empire from late 17th to early 20th centuries. Before the Treaty of Lausanne and the establishment of the Republic of Turkey, larger concentrations of Zeybeks could be found on the Aegean coast of western Anatolia, near the city of Smyrna. After the Greek invasion of Smyrna they fought against the Greek occupation of western Turkey. Following the formation of a Turkish national army, during the Greco-Turkish War of 1919–1922, most of them joined the regular forces and continued their resistance. They also acted, traditionally, as protectors of village people against landlords, bandits and tax collectors. A leader of a Zeybek gang was called Efe and his soldiers were known as either Zeybeks or Kızan. Kızan was generally used for newly recruited or inexperienced Zeybeks. There was generally a tribe democracy in group. Decisions was taken in a democratic way, after the decision was taken Efe has an uncontroversial authority. They followed definite rituals for all actions; for example, the promotion of a kızan to zeybek was very similar to Ahi rituals. Zeybeks had a special dance in which performers simulated hawks. Romantic songs about their bravery are still popular in Turkish folk music. The yatagan sword was their primary weapon, but most of them carried firearms as well. Photo by Pascal Sebah from www.fostinum.org
 
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​'The saint hath no fear because fear is the expectation either of some future calamity or of the eventual loss of some object of desire, whereas the saint is the 'Son of the Moment' ( or 'son of his time' - 'ibn waqtihi'); he has no future that he should fear anything; and as he hath no fear so he hath no hope, since hope is the expectation either of gaining an object of desire or of being relieved from a misfortune, and this belongs to the future; nor does he grieve because grief arises from the rigour of time and how should he feel grief who is in the radiance of satisfaction (rida) and the garden of concord (muwafaqat)?'


(Al-Junayd of Baghdad)
 
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Recommended Reading:

'Early Islamic Mysticism: Sufi, Qur'an, Mi'raj, Poetic and Theological Writings'
by Michael Anthony Sells (Author, Editor)

Purchase Book:

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Description:

The first centuries of Islam saw the development of Sufism as one of the world's major mystical traditions. Although the later Sufi writings by mystics such as Rumi are known and available in translation, access to the crucial early period of Islamic mysticism has been far more limited. This volume opens with an essay on the place of spirituality within the Islamic tradition. Immediately following are the foundation texts of the pre-Sufi spirituality: the Qur'an passages most important to the mystical tradition; the accounts of Muhammad's heavenly ascent (Mi'raj); and the crucial work of early poets in setting a poetic sensibility for speaking of union with the divine beloved. The volume then presents the sayings attributed to the key early figures of Islamic spirituality: Ja'far as-Saddiq, the Sixth Imam of the Shi'ite Tradition; Rabi'a, the most famous woman saint of classical Islam; Muhasibi, the founder of Islamic moral psychology; Bistami, whose sayings on mystical union have generated fascination and controversy throughout the Islamic tradition; Tustari, a pioneer in the mystical interpretation of the Qur'an; Junayd, who helped place Sufi mysticism at the center of the Islamic tradition; Hallaj, famous for his ecstatic utterances and martyrdom; and Niffari, whose sayings are considered among the deepest mystical expressions within Islam. The sayings of these pioneers are embedded in the later stratum of analytical and synoptic writings of later Sufi thinkers: Sarraj; Sulami; Qushayri; and 'Attar. Extensive portions of these writers are translated into English for the first time.

Excellent collection...admirably clear introduction...the real value of this book lies in the quality of its translation.
 
(The Way)
 
Sells is an astute interpreter of mystical texts and a poet.
 
(The Reader's Review)
 

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