By Usha Sanyal
Introduces the mythical chief of the good 20th-century Sunni flow.
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Extra info for Ahmad Riza Khan Barelwi: in the path of the prophet
When this Orientalist approach gave way, from the 1820s, to the supporters of “reform” and “liberalism,” the purpose of education became to instil British values. ” If this meant that down the road they would also want self-rule – as he thought they must – this was to be welcomed, for the new political order would be one that represented “an imperishable empire of our arts and our morals, our literature and our laws” (Metcalf and Metcalf, 2002: 81). In any event, this was a distant prospect, not something that British policy makers needed to worry about there and then.
He even helped to bring about the remarriage of women he knew. The second phase of Sayyid Ahmad’s career was overtly political, for he decided in the early 1820s to wage a jihad against the new non-Muslim rulers of India (first the Sikhs in Panjab, then the British). He and his associates planned for it carefully. 044 10/12/2004 5:11 PM Page 33 THE MUSLIM RESPONSE 33 many centuries before. The oath of loyalty had a double significance: at once a spiritual tie between master and disciple (and a promise to abide by certain principles of behavior which distinguished the devotee from the larger society around him), it was also a political act, presaging the coming jihad.
1240), the famous Andalusian sufi of the thirteenth century. Ibn al-‘Arabi had argued that creation has no empirical existence in and of itself, that it is but an aspect of God Himself. It follows logically from this position that human beings themselves are but an emanation of God,not independent of Him. Critics of this theory, of which there were many, argued that this position denies tawhid, the Oneness of God, for it makes humans the partners of God. “The whole universe is pervaded by a common existence, he argued, an existence both immanent and transcendent, but beyond that existence is the Original Existence of God” (Metcalf, 1982: 40).