Deciphering the Signs of God: A Phenomenological Approach to by Annemarie Schimmel

By Annemarie Schimmel

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In order to under 1A 2A 117, 16. 110, 3. 3 4 Extravagance (isráf) is forbidden in the Koran, 6, 142; 7, 29, etc. 5 A 134, 9. In another version of this story (A 157, II) the offender is smitten with paralysis. stand their attitude, we must remember the divinity that hedges the Oriental saint not merely in the eyes of mystics but amongst all classes of society. He wields an illimitable and mysterious power derived from Allah, whose chosen instrument he is. As his favour confers blessing, so his displeasure is fraught with calamity.

After a few minutes he bade me be seated and having summoned Bu ‘l-Qásimak, his chamberlain, despatched him to Qá í a‘íd. “Tell him,” said he,“that I withdraw from our arrangement, which was that to-morrow we should bring this Shaykh and the úfís to trial and severely punish them. If he asks why, let him know that last night I resolved to fast. To-day, while riding on my ass to the congregational mosque, I passed through the Kirmání marketplace Studies in Islamic mysticism 24 and saw some fine cakes in a confectioner’s shop.

Apart from several allusions to his corpulence, the only description of Abú Sa‘íd’s personal appearance that his biographers have preserved is the following, which depicts him as he was seen by an old man whom he saved from dying of thirst in the desert: tall, stout, with a white skin and wide eyes and a long beard falling to the navel; clad in a patched frock (muraqqa‘); in his hands a staff and a ewer; a prayer-rug thrown over his shoulder, also a razor and toothpick; a úfí cap on his head, and on his feet shoes of cotton soled with linen-rags (jumjum); light was shining from his face6.

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