Sufism, Sufis, and Sufi Orders: Sufism's Many Paths
Professor Alan Godlas, University of Georgia
Early Shaykhs of Sufism : Abu Muhammad al-Jariri
Sulami stated the following concerning al-Jariri: It is said
that his name was Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn al-Husayn and that his father's
patronymic was Abu al-Husayn. Another report was that his name was
Hasan ibn Muhammad. Although it was said that his name was 'Abd Allah
ibn Yahya, that is incorrect. He was among the great men of those
who associated with Junayd. In addition, he associated with Sahl
ibn 'Abd Allah al-Tustari. He was among the scholars of the shaykhs
of the Folk (al-qawm) [ie. the Sufis]. He was seated after Junayd
in his gathering (majlis), due to the completion of his [spiritual] state
and the correctness of his knowledge. He died in the year 311 AH.
Sulami noted that Jariri said, "I dreamt that someone
said to me, 'For God everything has its right. And the supreme right,
for God, is the right of wisdom (hikmah). God will demand its right
from whomever expresses wisdom to one for whom it is not suitable.
And whomever He demands its right from, he is opposed (khusima)."
Sulami also stated that Jariri said, "Whoever imagines
that one's actions will enable one to reach [both] one's highest and most
mundane hopes has indeed strayed from his path, because the Prophet (sala
Allah 'alayhi wa-sallam) said, 'He will not save you by your actions.'
So how can that which will not save one from what is feared (makhuf) enable
one to reach what is hoped for?! Rather one who truly relies upon
God's grace (fadl) is one for whom attainment becomes a fact (yurha lahu
---From al-Sulami, Tabaqatal-Sufiyah, selected
from pp. 259-63.
(The full chains of transmission of these reports are
the original but have been omitted in the above translation.)
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Translations copyright©1988 by Dr.
A. Godlas. Not for publication
in any media except by written permission
of the translator.