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Journey to the Divine: Islamic Mysticism in Thought and Practice
COL 253
Fall 2024
Section: 01  

This course will explore the history, practice, and theory of Sufism, typically understood as the expression of mysticism in Islam. By carefully reading classics of the genre, we will aim to get a deeper understanding of key Sufi principles and priorities. Our survey will extend to Sufi classics such as al-Ghazali's Deliverance from Error, mystical poetry by greats like Jalal al-Din Rumi, and modern Sufi compilations by such diverse figures as the Pakistani thinker Muhammad Iqbal and the British mystic and scholar Martin Lings. We will also delve into philosophical Sufism, with a focus on the insights of the preeminent Andalusian mystic Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi, renowned as the "Greatest Master" of the Sufi path (al-Shaykh al-Akbar). Beyond textual analysis, the course incorporates an experiential dimension by delving into Sufi art, including various musical genres such as qawwali. Themes to be explored include divine love, spiritual purification, and truth according to the Sufi way. While our focus will be on reading the greats of Sufi literature, we will also incorporate history in order to give a historically situated understanding of the development of Sufi thought.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA COL
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Student Option
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None
Past Enrollment Probability: 90% or above

Last Updated on JUL-20-2024
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