Denis E. McAuley

in Ibn `Arabī’s Mystical Poetics

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780199659548
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191743375 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Oriental Monographs


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This chapter uses a close reading of a single poem to bring together the topics analysed throughout the book. Building on a deft allusion to the Qur'an and a series of surprising images, the poem describes male spirit descending on female matter, an image that also serves as a metaphor for sainthood and poetics. The chapter concludes by evaluating Ibn `Arabī’s influence on later Arabic poetry, focusing in particular on Ibn al-Fāriḍ (d.1230) as understood by his commentators, and on the poets Ibn al-Wafā’ī (d.1477) and Al-Nābulusī (1641–1731). It is argued that while Ibn `Arabī’s Dīwān was largely overshadowed, his principal legacy to later Sufi poetry may lie in his poetic inspiration as something akin to divine revelation.

Keywords: Ibn `Arabī; Dīwān; Qur'an; poetics; Ibn al-Fāriḍ; Ibn al-Wafā’ī; Al-Nābulusī; poetic inspiration; revelation

Chapter.  10969 words. 

Subjects: Islam

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