Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data. Schimmel, Annemarie. Mystical dimensions of Islam. Includes bibliographical referentes, i. Sufism. I. Tule . Mystical Dimensions Of Islam - Annemarie Schimmel. Topics Sufism. Collection opensource. LanguageEnglish. Sufism. Identifier. As Through a Veil Mystical Poetry in Islam Annemarie Schimmel Lectures on the history of Author: Annemarie schimmel Format: PDF.
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MYSTICAL DIMENSIONS OF ISLAM by ANNEMARIE SCHIMMEL MYSTICAL DIMENSIONS OF ISLAM This page intentionally left blank by ANNEMARIE. Annemarie Brigitte Schimmel, who died aged 80 on 26th January , was the Schimmel grew up in a house “permeated with religious freedom and poetry”. By Annemarie Schimmel. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, pp. $ cloth. $ paper. A distinguishing characteristic of the Islamic.
Schimmel is critical of those--especially Western feminists--who take Islam to task without taking the time to comprehend the cultures, language, and traditions of the many societies in which Islam is the majority religion.
Shattering stereotypes, Schimmel reconstructs an important but little-known chapter of Islamic spirituality. With copius examples, she shows the clear equality of women and meni nthe conception of the Prophet Muhammad, the Quran, the feminine language of the mystical tradition, and the role of holy mothers and unmarried women as manifestations of God.
This work is studded with luminous texts from Arabic, Turkish, Persian, and particularly Indo-Muslim cultures, which reveal how physical love can give expression to the highest forms of mysticism. Preface Introduction Chapter 1.
Women and the Prophet 2. Women in Sufism 3. Women in the Quran and in the Tradition 4. Woman or "Man of God": The Education of the Soul nafs 5. The Old Woman 6. The Mothers 7. Woman as Manifesto of God 8. The Brides of God 9. Woman-Souls in Indo-Pakistani Poetry Nevertheless, the open- bed. So too is the fact that he largely promoted the study of Biblical sites but devoted entered upon a poetic dialogue with Hafiz, thereby little attention to the reality of Arab existence.
Even recognising the Persian as his equal. So we can say us forget that the German writer knew little about the that this interest in the Orient was devoted to self-com- Persian poet, and knowledge of the Orient was in gene- prehension rather than to any attempt at penetrating ral very limited. Any rapproche- today; what is important is his basic attitude of open- ment was a by-product rather than the main objective.
Decisive Only a few outstanding scholars went beyond this limi- too is the fact that Goethe was always very much ted relationship with the Orient, demonstrating genu- aware of the differences between Hafiz and other poets ine interest in research on the spot. It goes without saying that this low the established precedent of translating oriental very awareness of difference made dialogue rather poets.
In addition, the already existing versions and than monologue possible. The change in attitude ralleled enthusiasm for such linguistic and literary towards the Orient could also be interpreted as a shift achievements.
In addition, Romanticism, which exten- from the Orient being seen as a partner with whom ded roughly over the first half of the 19th century, was one spoke and by whom one was inspired even the only epoch in German history in which we find a though that was, of course, a bygone, classical Orient great scholar and a great poet united in a single person to the Orient as an object of discussion, something — at least as far as orientalism is concerned. Goethe about which people talked without this influencing himself was not an orientalist as such, rather an ama- their own thinking.
There are many reasons for that teur in such matters.
He did not know any oriental and they are difficult to summarise in a single senten- language and never translated an oriental poem direct- ce, but it is of course no coincidence that the timing of ly from its original language.
For his part, Hammer- this change in German attitudes towards the Orient Purgstall may have been an important scholar but he coincided precisely with the period of colonial rule by was certainly not a great autonomous poet.
Only the other great European powers. Unfortunately the latter is now lar- seriously as a culturally significant partner for dialogue.
The literary tradition to which Annemarie Schimmel began an Oriental Studies course in Berlin at Schimmel belonged also got under way with the much the end of the Thirties. In his own that she was attracted to languages and read a few poems he was also inspired and influenced by the oriental tales. She was particularly impressed by a Orient.
The Orient was outstanding knowledge, and great poetic ability. Now, this mystical wis- gard to cultural encounters becomes particularly appa- dom is certainly much more present in the Orient than rent when compared with the hundred years that fol- in the West; but it is also clear that viewing the Orient lowed, up to the end of the Second World War. Orien- as a bastion of mystical wisdom avoids placing empha- tal Studies may have made great progress as a science sis on the real Orient with all of its problems.
In my during that period, but they remained without in- opinion, this linking of enthusiasm for the Orient with fluence on the larger cultural environment and litera- a need to escape from the real world into an imagina- ture as a whole.
No important writer showed serious ry one is a characteristic aspect of the orientalist epoch interest in oriental literature. No great orientalist felt I am talking about here. In saying this I inclination, ability, and will. Rather we must we can point to an essential aspect of the epoch shaped understand that for her generation it was practically by the two of them.
Responsiveness to the Orient impossible to see the Orient in any other way — as was during the Baroque period was sparked by the crisis of also the case for previous generations. One can mention at least one important rather than wishing to learn from it.
For Goethe the reason why that was the case - why it was virtually crisis came with Napoleon and the post-Napoleonic impossible to do anything other than primarily imag- upheavals; for Annemarie Schimmel it was the econo- ine the Orient. That simple fact also serves to demonstrate my assertion that the epoch to which Annemarie Schimmel belon- ged has meanwhile come to an end.
Today travelling to the Orient is, as we know, no lon- ger a problem. Only the richest of the rich or by Annemarie Schimmel: selves but certainly businessmen could afford to go on such a journey. In Morgenland und Abendland. The tical magazine is complete without a report about the Orient was no longer Orient, back then there was an almost complete lack of comprehended as a helpful complement to the present news and information about that part of the world.
At day as had previously been the case ; it was seen as a that time the Orient was not a reality. In many respects counter-concept and as a means of salvation. If it did occasionally appe- the same time her great weakness that she never re- ar in the news, it was as the subject of a dispute bet- garded the Orient soberly, but always viewed it instead ween the great powers rather than as an autonomous with loving infatuation, an infatuation based on an ide- political force.
Even though she was no within the faith. Her research experience of the Orient she was ahead not only of her on Islam in India and Pakistan was equally unusual in time, but also of course of all previous generations of terms of classical German Oriental Studies.
With it she orientalists. Pre-World War Two orientalists especially drew attention to the fact that Islam was more diverse during the nineteenth century had often never visited than the traditional research focus on areas such as the Orient, let alone lived there for any time. Finally, mention should also be made of the fact continued to travel a great deal, and she certainly saw that Annemarie Schimmel seldom wrote just for speci- more of the Islamic world than most of her colleagues.
Most of her books were also aimed at a more That practical experience which nevertheless did little extensive readership. For many people these books to dissuade her from her idealised view of Islam allows made Islam accessible for the first time, and no other us to see Annemarie Schimmel as someone on the German Orientalist had as many readers. In short, no threshold, marking the end of one epoch and at the one did as much for understanding of Islam in same time preparing the way for the next.
This is con- Germany as Annemarie Schimmel. For this she was firmed by other aspects of her work, aspects that seem deservedly awarded the Peace Prize of the German very progressive to us.
Without her this literature would have death? Taking into account all of her achievements, remained unknown to German readers. Remarkably, should one not instead come to the conclusion that we she also knew and translated modern oriental poetry. Of course we could do this. However, I fear of Oriental Studies, and demonstrates how far that we would then fail to gain a complete view of spe- Annemarie Schimmel was ahead of her time.
She stood cific new difficulties and specific new opportunities in with one foot in the future - in other words, in our pre- the dialogue between cultures.