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Volume 6, No 3, Fall 1996 [back]

From Muhyiddin ibn 'Arabi


[Ibn 'Arabi made the acquaintance of a saintly man called Abu 'Abd Allah al-Tartusi, who during a discussion with Ibn 'Arabi evinced a critical attitude Abu Madyan. At once Ibn 'Arabi -- whose veneration for Abu Madyan knew no bounds -- formed an aversion towards al-Tartusi, but the same night he had a dream in which he saw the Prophet. He relates:]

The Messenger of God asked me: 'Why do you hate so-and-so?'

I replied: 'Because he hates Abu Madyan.'

He said to me: 'Does he not love God and me?'

I answered: 'Certainly he does; he loves God and he loves you.'

He replied: 'Why then do you hate him for hating Abu Madyan rather than love him for loving God and His Messenger?'

I answered: 'Messenger of God, I have committed an error and have been negligent. I now repent, and he is one of the people whom I love the most! You have warned me and counselled me.'

[Quoted from al-Futuhat al-Makkiyya by Claude Addas in Quest for the Red Sulphur, Islamic Texts Society, Cambridge 1993]

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