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Visionaries of SilenceThe Reformist Sufi Order of the Demirdashiya al-Khalwatiya in Cairo$
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Earle H. Waugh

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9789774160899

Published to Cairo Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5743/cairo/9789774160899.001.0001

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Historical and Religious Background of the Demirdashiya

Historical and Religious Background of the Demirdashiya

(p.9) 1 Historical and Religious Background of the Demirdashiya
Visionaries of Silence

Earle H. Waugh

American University in Cairo Press

Theosophy of the Divine Names itself is rooted in the power of mandalalike articulation. The rise of the Khalwatiya seems to reflect the institutionalization of personal withdrawal and the ascendancy of silent meditation within the Sufi tradition. It indicates how malleable the Islamic tradition was in its early history, for the khalwa (retreat) denotes an influence from the periphery of the Islamic world, which gained significance in the heart of the religious establishment. In the fifteenth century, some ideas connected to an international spiritual movement embodied in institutional structures called orders were directed by a distinctive leadership of masters and saints and were each based on an adab (discipline). Spencer Trimingham stressed the impact of eastern spiritual impulses on the Islamic empires as the fulcrum for Sufi life.

Keywords:   theosophy, mandalalike, khalwa, significance, Sufi life

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