Ibn Juzay’s Sufic Exegesis [print]

Front cover

Ibn Juzay al-Kalbī began his exegesis of the Quran with a short introduction to the various disciplines related to explaining the Quran. One of the topics he included is Sufism. The basic concern of Sufism is the heart: knowing its good and bad qualities, how to rid it of bad qualities, and how to instill it with the good. Ibn al-Juzay explained its inclusion, saying that Sufism is “connected to the Quran since the Quran mentions divine knowledge, struggling against the self [nafs], and illuminating and purifying hearts via obtaining praiseworthy character and avoiding blameworthy character.” He then enumerated twelve topics related to Sufism which he would explain in his tafsīr.

The topics Ibn Juzay covered include: thanks [shukr]; Godfearingness [taqwā]; remembrance [dhikr]; patience [ṣabr]; tawḥīd; love for Allah; reliance upon Him [tawakkul]; vigilance [murāqabah]; fear and hope [khawf and rajā]; repentance [tawbah]; and sincerity [ikhlāṣ].

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