The Language of the Future
Sufi Terminology
by Murshid F.A. Ali ElSenossi


(Afkar). Meditations and contemplations on the Names and Attributes of Allah, the Real. The Essence Itself is Unknowable and it is this aspect of Himself about which Allah warns us in The Qur'an. To reflect upon the Essence is not possible, however is it possible to contemplate His Names and Attributes which are manifested in His creation.

See also: Attribute Concentrated Meditation Essence Friends of Allah Names People of the Essence Reflection Seclusion
(Sifat). An Attribute or Quality by which Allah reveals Himself in a relative manner. A sifat is a radiation from the Divine Essence through which man can approach Knowledge of Allah. The Essence has no manifestation without the manifestation of Attributes (sifat). The Essence is the source of the Attributes and the Attributes are the source of actions.
(Dhat). The Essence. This is Allah in Himself without regard to His creations, His Attributes or His Names. The Essence is beyond knowledge or conceptualization. Allah warns us of this aspect of Himself. The Essence is Absolute Blindness, the Hidden of the Hidden, the Unknown of the Unknown. This is the World of Absolute Non-manifestation.
(Awliya). The friends of Allah. These are His Saints. Their knowledge is not derived from reflection. Allah has purified them of that type of knowledge. They possess the opening of unveiling through Allah, the Real, Himself. The awliya are those with unbroken awareness of Allah. These Perfect Men have attained to the highest of all human degrees.
(Asma). Names. The Names designate permanent 'aspects' of the Essence. Every Name has a meaning and a form. The meaning of every Name is Allah. It is only through the Names, all of which are Allah's, that we have access to Knowledge of Allah. The Divine Names seek the Perfect Man (Insan al Kamil) to be their perfect locus of manifestation. Through their seeking him and their requiring his existence the knower comes to understand the nobility and grandeur of the Perfect Man.
(Al Dhatiyun). 'Those who have realised the Essence' are the slaves of Allah who drink directly from the Fountain of Camphor in Paradise. They are the People of Solitude of the Absolute Essence. Their love of Allah, being total and utter, remains constant in the face of opposites, because for them the opposites are joined. There is only Unity. There is only Allah as He is in Himself.
(Fikr). Reflection or the power of thought and cogitation. It is the ability to put together the details accumulated by the senses and acquired through the imagination. Fikr is a quality possessed only by man, and even though it is one of the means through which he can obtain knowledge of Allah, ultimately, True Knowledge of the Absolute comes through 'unveiling', 'opening', 'taste', 'insight' and 'witnessing'.
(Khalwa). The spiritual retreat and seclusion. Initially seclusion is undertaken by physically withdrawing from those outside disturbances which have the potential of distracting one in his contemplation of Allah's Names and Attributes. Ultimately this withdrawal becomes purely spiritual when the heart is in a state of perpetual presence with Allah . Then the lover of Allah is with his Beloved at all times, regardless of the external conditions within which he is situated. Seclusion is the conversation of one's secret awareness with Allah. This is known as 'Khalwa fi Jalwa' (Seclusion within society) - as you are in a private state of seclusion with Allah while going about your everyday activities.

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