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

Order by: Arabic English


Taking account

(Muhasabah). The constant analysis of the heart and its changing states. During muhasabah the contemplative takes stock of the heart's most secret motions. He calls himself to account, here and now. He does not wait till the Hereafter.


(Hakawi). Literally - a 'jaw wagger'. The one whose Murshid has passed away before his training was completed (or the one who has separated himself from the teaching). His lower self will not allow him to move any further. Instead of seeking a Shayk...


(Sha'n). Task or affair or state. Within every created thing, in each indivisible moment, Allah is upon a new task or state or affair (sha'n). These ever-changing tasks (shu'un) are the renewal of creation in each instant.


(Dhawq). Taste or direct spiritual experience. This is the first stage of the experience of Allah's Self-disclosure. It is followed by 'drinking' and 'quenching' and sometimes by the final stage 'intoxication'. Those who have tasted know. Those wh...

Teach or Instruct

To teach or explain a point. In Tasawwuf, Talqin is used when the Shaykh or Murshid says something and the murid repeats it back to him. This may be used when one enters Islam at the hand of the Shaykh or when entering upon the Path of Allah during b...


(Haykal). Temple or bodily form. The human body is the temple of Allah.

Temporally originated

(Muhdath). Knowledges come to man through Allah's Speech. Man did not have such knowledges before he entered the sphere of Space and Time, therefore these knowledges are said to be temporally originated. He did not know and then he knew. His knowing...


(Mubasharah). The tenderness which was lavished on man when Allah fashioned him between the Two Divine Hands. This is the specific Divine Favour to the human species.


(Istilah). Each science has its own unique terminology through which the people of that science communicate with each other. The newcomer to that science must be taught the terminology which is relevant to his field of study. Tasawwuf, the Science o...


(Rahbah) is the immediate terror of the threat of punishment being realized. It is also the hidden terror of unstable and valueless knowledge and the secret terror that what was known before will become a certainty.

Testimony of Faith
shahadah (kalimah)

(Shahadah). The witnessing or testimony or word. The supreme witnessing that defines Unity is the Islamic Testimony of Faith (Shahadah). 'There is no god other than Allah; Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah'.

That which enters the heart

(Tawariq ). That which enters the heart, either as glad tidings or with rebuke, during the slave's secret converse with Allah.

The One you turn to for help
Al Musta'aan

(Al Musta'aan). The One you turn to for help. One of the beautiful Names of Allah.

The Pen has dried
qad jaffa'l-qalam

(Qad jaffa al Qalam). In other words, the Divine decree cannot be changed. This expression is somewhat similar to the phrase 'As Allah has Willed' (Masha' Allah) and 'It is written' (kana maktub).

The Two Imams

(Imamani). Within the Sufi hierarchy there are two who are called the Imams. One is from the right of the Ghawth and he oversees the invisible world. The other is from the left of the Ghawth and he oversees the material world. The latter acts as depu...