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Mawlana Ahmed Ghazali: 'Love, in its true nature, is but an affliction...'

Mawlana Ahmed Ghazali: 'Love, in its true nature, is but an affliction...'
Photo: Zar Zari Zar Baksh Dargah in Khuldabad; 1890s.


Love, in its true nature, is but an affliction (bala'), and intimacy (uns) and ease are something alien to it and are provisionally borrowed. This is because separation in love is indeed duality while union is indeed oneness. Everything short of this is a delusion of union, not its true reality. This is why it is said:

Love is an affliction and I am not about to abstain from affliction, 
(In fact) when love falls asleep I turn to it and raise it. 
My friends tell me to abstain from affliction 
Affliction is the heart, how can I abstain from the heart?

(Mawlana Ahmed Ghazali)


Recommended Reading:

'Ahmad Al-ghazali, Remembrance, and the Metaphysics of Love'
By Joseph E B Lumbard  (Author)

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The teachings of Aḥmad al-Ghazālī changed the course of Persian Sufism forever, paving the way for luminaries such as Rūmī, Aṭṭār, and Ḥāfiẓ. Yet he remains a poorly understood thinker, with many treatises incorrectly attributed to him and conflicting accounts in the historiographical literature. This work provides the first examination of Aḥmad al-Ghazālī and his work in Western scholarly literature. Joseph E. B. Lumbard seeks to ascertain the authenticity of works attributed to this author, trace the development of the dominant trends in the biographical literature, and reconstruct the life and times of Aḥmad al-Ghazālī with particular attention to his relationship with his more famous brother, Abū Hamid al-Ghazālī. Lumbard's findings revolutionize our understanding of Aḥmad al-Ghazālī writings, allowing for focus on his central teachings regarding Divine Love and the remembrance of God.
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