further reading

A Recent Discovery

Henry Corbin’s “Creative Imagination in the Sufism of Ibn ‘Arabi” found last week in Washington DC. A longer piece forthcoming.

“Suhrawardi died a martyr at the age of thirty-eight in Aleppo, whither he ahd rashly journeyed (1191), a victim of the rabid intolerance of the doctors of the Law and of Salahaddin, the fanatic known to the Crusaders as Saladin. Thoguh his life was cut off too soon, he succeeded in carrying out a great design: in reviving in Iran the wisdom of the ancient Persians, their doctrine of Light and Darkness. The result was the philosophy, or rather, to take the Arabic term in its etymological sense, the “theosophy of Light” (hikmat al-Ishraq) to which we find parallels in many of the pages of Ibn ‘Arabi… The effects of Suhrawardi’s theosophy of Light have been felt in Iran down to our own time. One of its essential features is that it makes philosophy and mystical experience inseperable: a philosophy that does not culminate in a metaphysic of ecstacy is vain speculation.”