Shafi’i Scholars on Sufism

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ 

Imam Abu ‘Abdullah Muhammad ibn Idris ash-Shafi’i (r.a.) wrote, in his Diwan: 

“Be both a faqih and a Sufi; do not be only one of them.

Verily, by Allah’s Truth, I am advising you sincerely.” 

The muhaddits, Imam Isma’il ibn Muhammad al-‘Ajluni al-Jarrahi (r.a.) recorded, in Kashf al-Khafa’ wa Muzil al-Ilbas ‘Amma Ishtahara min al-Hadits ‘ala as-Sinat an-Naas, that Imam ash-Shafi’i (r.a.) said, “Three things in this world have been made lovely to me: avoiding affectation, treating people kindly, and following the way of taswawwuf.” 

Imam Shams ad-Din Abu ‘Abdullah Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyyah (r.a.), in Madarij as-Salikin; and Imam Abu al-Fadhl ‘Abd ar-Rahman ibn Abu Bakr ibn Muhammad Jalal ad-Din as-Suyuthi (r.a.), in Ta’yid al-Haqiqah al-‘Aliyyah; quoted him thus: “I accompanied the Sufis, and received from them but three lessons: their statement that time is a sword; if you do not cut it, it cuts you; their statement that if you do not keep your ego busy with truth it will keep you busy with falsehood; and their statement that deprivation is immunity.” 

Imam Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Ghumari (r.a.) wrote, in Tashnif al-Adzan, “The Sufis are often accused of bid’ah, but ash-Shafi’i refuted these individuals: ‘Anything which has a support from the shari’ah is not bid’ah, even if the early Muslims did not do it.’”


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